by G. V. Tagare | 1950 | 2,545,880 words
This page describes The Lord Grants Boons to Indradyumna which is chapter 29 of the English translation of the Skanda Purana, the largest of the eighteen Mahapuranas, preserving the ancient Indian society and Hindu traditions in an encyclopedic format, detailling on topics such as dharma (virtous lifestyle), cosmogony (creation of the universe), mythology (itihasa), genealogy (vamsha) etc. This is the twenty-ninth chapter of the Purushottama-kshetra-mahatmya of the Vaishnava-khanda of the Skanda Purana.
1-4. After saying this to the tiger among kings, the Lotus-seated Lord took away the lion form of Viṣṇu that had formerly manifested in the form of light and touched the heart for the sake of the welfare of the worlds.
The four idols that were seen before at the time of placing them down from the chariot were seen again seated on thrones. Brahmā then worshipped Balabhadra with the twelve-syllabled Mantra. He worshipped Nārāyaṇa, free from ailments, with the Puruṣa Sūkta, (Subhadrā) with the Devī Sūkta and the discus with the twelve-syllabled Mantra. After worshipping he submitted the request (to the Lord) to bless the king.
Indeed, O Lord, seeing you is the cause of Sāyujya with you, although he wishes to worship you through the yoga of devotion. So command him to meditate on you through the yoga of devotion, through holy rites, different kinds of offerings and services to be performed in different places on different occasions.
Desirous of imbibing the nectarine juice of your command issuing from your lotus-like mouth, O Lord of the universe, the king looks at you without winking.
9. On being requested thus directly by the Lotus-born Lord, the Lord, though he had only the wooden body, laughingly said thus in a majestic tone:
The holy idol said:
10. O Indradyumna, I am delighted with your devotion and holy rites performed without selfish motive. So much of wealth has never been spent by any person other than you.
11-12a. I shall grant you this boon, O king, that your devotion to me shall be steady. You have spent crores and crores and built my shrine, O great king. Even if it cracks and crumbles, this spot will not be abandoned by me.
12b-18. Even if any other person later, on another occasion, were to build the Mansion, the credit surely shall go to you only. It is due to my love for you that I will stay there. I affirm repeatedly that it is true. I am speaking the truth to you. Even when the Mansion crumbles, I will never abandon this spot. With this wooden body I shall stay here for the period till the second Parārdhaka (the later half of the life) of Brahmā comes to a close.
In the second set of four Yugas of Svāyaṃbhuva Manu, in the first Jyeṣṭha month of the Kṛta Yuga, I was born in the Jyaiṣṭhī (i.e. on the full-moon day in Jyeṣṭha). That is the auspicious birthday of the incarnation.
On that day the sacred ablution should be performed on my idol in accordance with the injunctions for great ablutions. O great king, it should be done profusely with the waters (of the Tīrthas) scented with perfumes. This holy rite will destroy the sins acquired in the course of a crore of births. The benefit of all the Tīrthas and sacrifices and the benefit of all charitable gifts (shall be acquired).
19-21. Benefit is acquired, O great king, even by those who view this.
There is a well to the north of the Banyan tree. Indeed it is filled with all the Tīrthas. It was originally dug up for the purpose of bathing. It has been covered a little by the (falling) earth. I incarnated afterwards. Clear it and bring it to light. It should be consecrated on the fourteenth lunar day after offering oblation in accordance with the injunctions to the Kṣetrapāla (Protector of the holy spot) who protects it and to the Guardians of the Quarters.
23. On the morning of the full-moon day, in the month of Jyeṣṭha, the devotee should perform the ablution of Rāma, Subhadrā and me along with Brahmā. Thereby he will obtain my world.
24. The man who sees me being bathed then, O excellent king, does not become bound with bodies thereafter.
25-29. In the north-eastern corner a sturdy stage [raised platform] be made and placed. It should be well-adorned. A canopy should be put up above it. It should be sprinkled with sandal-paste water. Along with Rāma and Subhadrā I should be bathed and taken there. He who sees me proceeding ahead facing South with great devotion, shall certainly obtain whatever he wishes for.
O king, after placing me (installing me), for fifteen days one should never see ugly or beautiful things (?) By performing this holy ablution of Jyeṣṭha one is liberated from all sins.
30. O lord of the earth, you should celebrate ‘the great procession named Guṇḍicā. The very glorification of this liberates a man from sins.
32. Particularly the second day in the month of Āṣāḍha in conjunction with Puṣya constellation is conducive to salvation. The festival shall be celebrated on the specified lunar day even if the constellation does not coincide. It is pleasing to me always.
33. On the second day, in the bright half of the lunar month of Āṣāḍha, in conjunction with Puṣya constellation, the devotees should place Rāma and me along with Bhadrā on the chariot.
34. For the performance of the great festival, many Brāhmaṇas should be propitiated. The Guṇḍicā pavilion should be where I was born before.
35. At that time the great Altar of your thousand horse-sacrifices was there. There is no spot here on the earth more meritorious than that.
36. There is no other place on the earth more pleasing to me than that place where you performed Homas for five hundred years to propitiate me.
37-38. Just as this Nīla mountain is highly pleasing to me now on account of your Mansion (built) at the instance of the Four-faced Lord, so also in the Nṛsiṃhakṣetra the great altar of your sacrifice, the place of my birth, is eternally pleasing to me.
39. I have stayed there for a great deal of time. I have great pleasure therein. This Lotus-born Lord is my Ātman. My Ātman has been installed by him in the Mansion.
40. Due to his request and your devotion I shall stay here permanently. I shall go (there) for nine days. Then I will come here.
41-42a. There, O great king, is your lake consisting of all the Tīrthas. On its shore I shall stay for seven days with a desire to bless (people). Men who see me stationed there go to my abode.
42b-44a. There are three and half crores of Tīrthas in all the three worlds together. Due to my presence near the lake all those Tīrthas flow into that lake. By taking holy bath there and by seeing me duly with devotional feelings they do not undergo any longer the pain in the womb of a mother.
44b-45. When I return on the ninth day facing the South, the devotees shall see me. Those who see me then, shall attain the benefit of a horse-sacrifice for every step. They being on a par with Indra enjoy the pleasures and in the end enter me (i.e. become one with me).
46. My getting up, my going to sleep, turning on the sides, covering of my path and meritorious bath—all these are occasions for great festivals.
47-50. On the full-moon day in the month of Phālguna, O king, the festival of my sport in the swing (dolā) should be celebrated. Those who see me worshipped facing the South and sporting in the swing shall be liberated from Brāhmaṇa’s slaughter and other sins. There is no doubt about it. Worshipping me in these two (festivals), seeing me and bowing down to me, the devotee shall obtain the benefit of eight thousand horse-sacrifices for each.
On the thirteenth day in the bright half of Caitra, the festival of Karmaprapūraṇam (filling in the Karmas) shall be celebrated. I shall be worshipped with Damana (Artemisia Indica) flowers on the fourteenth day in the bright half of the month of Caitra. All the sins of those people shall be destroyed.
51-52. The third day in the bright half of the month of Vaiśākha is called Akṣayatṛtīyā. On that day I shall be smeared with excessively splendid unguents. It shall please me. Those who celebrate my festivals regularly shall attain all the four aims in life. Each of these is glorified as the bestower of the fourfold aim of life.
53. After granting boons to Indradyumna, O Brāhmaṇas, the Lord said to Brahmā with smiles on his lotus-like face:
54. “O Four-faced One, everything has been accomplished for your delight. Your wish is my wish. Certainly there is no difference between us.
55. This incarnation has been taken by me as a result of your former request to me while I was in the form of Mādhava.
56. By seeing me here, by worshipping me and by casting off their life here, all of them are gradually liberated along with you. Again they will attain Sāyujya:
57. If a man wishes something and serves me here, he will certainly obtain it.
58. Let the king in (your) company go now to Satyaloka. Let the Devas go to heaven. I stay on here as long as you live.”
59. Then those excellent Brahminical Sages and Suras became delighted. After bowing down their heads to the Lord they went to their respective abodes.
60. The Lord, the Lord of the universe having the form of the idol remained silent, delighting all the men.
61. The righteous-souled Indradyumna, the devotee of Viṣṇu, steadfast in his holy rites, followed the Lotus-born Lord. At his behest he returned.
62. Celebrate well all the processions and festivals commanded by the Lord. Whe this Lord of the universe is pleased, all the mobile and immobile beings are pleased.
63. The lord of the earth received this behest of the Lotus-born Lord with bent head. Accompanied by Nārada and Padmanidhi he celebrated all the festivals beginning with Jyeṣṭhasnāna (taking the holy bath in the month of Jyeṣṭha) gorgeously.
Footnotes and references:
Two words ‘daśeti kratusaṃsthitiḥ’ in the original appear to be irrelevant.
sādhivāsam: ‘adhivāsa’ is also interpreted as ‘the necessary arrangement for festive religious duties performed on the previous day’. Then the translation will be... “on that day...for great ablution along with the Adhivāsa ritual”.
The Kalpa tree which stands in the compound of Jagannātha Temple.
Another name for Ratha-yātrā.