The Skanda Purana
by G. V. Tagare | 1950 | 2,545,880 words
This page describes Meditation on the Lord in Different Forms which is chapter 47 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 forty-seventh chapter of the Purushottama-kshetra-mahatmya of the Vaishnava-khanda of the Skanda Purana.
Chapter 47 - Meditation on the Lord in Different Forms
[Sanskrit text for this chapter is available]
The sages said:
1. O holy Lord, conversant with all scriptures, a wonderful account about the greatness of the festivals of the Lord, destructive of sins, has been heard.
2. Now tell us how this Lord grants prosperity on meditation of his glorious attributes by those who desire prosperity. How is he the bestower of all desired objects?
3. All the mobile and immobile beings of the universe are the Vibhūtis (glorious attributes) of Viṣṇu. That one Supreme Lord is the bestower of prosperity and glory. He is the Supreme Vibhūti too.
4-5. It is not possible to measure his greatness by saying “It is this much”. What one gets or becomes is determined by the degree of his devotion to God and his mode of worship. The single path for acquiring all the four aims of life beginning with Dharma is that Lord of wooden form.
6. The path of virtue and piety is incomprehensible. It has become (too) narrow due to numerous restrictions imposed by precepts. O excellent Brāhmaṇas, no one is competent to come to a decision as to its (of Dharma) exact nature.
7. Artha (Wealth) and Kāma (Love) have always gross features. They have their origin in Dharma. The Lord increases all these three without any strain.
8. Indeed Dharma itself is Lord Viṣṇu. This universe has its root in Dharma. Janārdana is the Lord of Dharma and of the universe.
9. If a man’s devotion is well-established in him (the Lord) who is identical with the aims of life, he becomes a contented soul in every respect. He is not affected by (unfulfilled) yearnings. He never feels grief-stricken.
10. If he is worshipped in the form of Śakra, he bestows the wealth and glory of all the three worlds.
If Hari is meditated upon in the form of Brahmā, he causes increase in family.
11. In the form of Sanatkumāra he grants long life. Meditated upon in the form of Pṛthu he bestows employment and riches.
12. Worshipped as Vācaspati he bestows the benefit of bathing in Gaṅgā and other sacred waters. Meditated upon in the form of the Sun he dispels internal darkness.
13. Worshipped as the Moon he will give matchless fortune. One who meditates upon the Lord in the form of Vākpati, becomes conversant with the principles of the eighteen Vidyās (branches, of learning).
14. This Lord identical with the universe, when meditated upon in the form of the Lord of Yajñas, shall bestow the benefits of performing horse and other sacrifices. He is the eternal Lord.
15. Meditated upon in the form of Kubera he will grant immense prosperity.
16. Such is the Ocean of Mercy dwelling on that Nīla mountain. He has come in embodied form under the guise of the Lord with wooden form to bless the wretched and the helpless.
17. Go there, O Brāhmaṇas; stay there with mental and bodily purity and concentration. Seek refuge in the pair of lotus-like feet of the Lord of Śrī.
18. If you wish for perpetual enjoyment of pleasure here and hereafter and, in the end, final emancipation in the form of complete isolation from matter, go to that place.
Footnotes and references:
VV 10-15 describe the specific merits derived from worshipping the different forms of the Lord such as Śakra, Brahmā etc.