The Skanda Purana

by G. V. Tagare | 1950 | 2,545,880 words

This page describes Jalandhara Attains Salvation which is chapter 22 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-second chapter of the Karttikamasa-mahatmya of the Vaishnava-khanda of the Skanda Purana.

Chapter 22 - Jalandhara Attains Salvation

[Sanskrit text for this chapter is available]

Nārada said:

1. On seeing Rudra with wonderful exploits, Jalandhara created (an illusory) Gaurī by means of his Māyā, as though to delude the Three-eyed Lord.

2. Śiva saw that Pārvatī was crying. She was bound above the chariot and was being struck and hit by Niśuṃbha and others.

3. On seeing Gaurī in that plight, Śiva too became agonized in his mind. With his face bent down, he stood motionless forgetting his own valour.

4. Then with great rapidity, Jalandhara pierced Rudra with three arrows which went deep into his head, chest and belly up to their tail-feathers.

5. Then enlightened by Viṣṇu, he (Śiva) understood that it was all Māyā (trickery). Thereupon he adopted a very terrific form, dreadful on account of the clusters of flames.

6. On seeing his excessively terrifying form, the great Asuras being incapable of standing in front of him (fled) and resorted to all the ten quarters.

7. Then Rudra cursed the two Rākṣasas Śuṃbha and Niśuṃbha thus: “You who fled away from the battle with me, shall be killed by Gaurī.”

8. Again Jalandhara showered sharp arrows in quick succession. At that time the vast surface of the earth was covered by darkness due to the (numerous) arrows (so discharged).

9. By the time Rudra quickly cut off the mass of his arrows, that powerful demon immediately hit the bull with an iron club.

10. On account of that blow, the bull turned away from the battlefield. Though it was dragged and pulled by Rudra, it did not stay on the battlegrounds.

11. Thereupon Rudra became excessively infuriated. He adopted a highly dreadful physical form. With great velocity he hurled the discus Sudaraśana that had the refulgence of the Sun.

12. Burning heaven and earth, it rapidly descended on the earth and severed his (Jalandhara’s) head with huge large eyes from his body.

13-14a. His body came with a thudding sound upon the surface of the earth when it fell from the chariot. A refulgence issued forth from his body and it merged in Rudra. The refulgence that had issued forth from the body of Vṛndā got merged into Gaurī.

14b-16. Then the Devas beginning with Brahmā, with eyes beaming like full-blown lotuses due to delight, bowed down their heads before Rudra and spoke of the action of Viṣṇu.

Devas said:

O Mahādeva, Devas have been rescued from the fear arising from the enemies. But a new development has taken place. What shall we do in that respect? Viṣṇu has become deluded by the beauty of Vṛndā, He stands enchanted.

Īśvara said:

17. O Devas, in order to dispel the delusion of Viṣṇu, go and seek refuge in Māyā, the Mohinī (Enchantress) worthy of being sought shelter in. She will do your work.

Nārada said:

18. After saying this the Lord vanished along with all the Bhūtas and the Gaṇas. The Devas then eulogized Mūlaprakṛti (Primordial Prakṛti) fond of her devotees.

Devas said:

19. We bow down to that Mūlaprakṛti from whom the guṇas, Sattva, Rajas, and Tamas, originate and then cause the creation, sustenance and annihilation (of the universe) and at whose will this universe extends and causes its existence and non-existence.

20. We bow down to that Prakṛti which has been said to have twenty-three different manifestations (evolutes or Tattvas?), which is the greatest being that is established in the entire universe, and whose form and activities are not known to even the three foolish Devas.

21. We bow down to that Mūlaprakṛti who is fond of her devotees. Those Puruṣas who have devotion to her do not meet with poverty, fear, delusion, defeat etc.

Nārada said:

22. Poverty, delusion and misery never touch that person who reads and recites this prayer with fully concentrated mind during the three junctions (i.e. morning, noon and at dusk).

23. Even as those Devas were eulogizing thus, they saw a mass of splendour spreading in the firmament. Flames spread in all the quarters and the intervening spaces.

24-25. From its middle all of them heard the speech spreading in (i.e. emanating from) the firmament.

Śakti said:

I alone stand in three different forms characterized by the three Guṇas. I am Gaurī, Lakṣmī and Svarā characterized by the Guṇas of Rajas, Sattva and Tamas respectively. Therefore go to them, O Suras, they will do your work.

Nārada said:

26. Even as the Devas stood listening to this, with surprise evident in their beaming eyes, that refulgence vanished, O king.

27. On being urged by those words (of Śakti), all those Devas went to Gaurī, Lakṣmī and Svarā and bowed down with great devotion.

28. On seeing the Suras bowing down, those deities, fond of devotees, gave them the seeds and spoke these words, O king.

The Devīs said:

29. Sow these seeds in the place where Viṣṇu is present. Then you will succeed in your work.

Nārada said:

30. The groups of Suras and Siddhas took those seeds and scattered them on the earth where Viṣṇu always stays (stayed) following Vṛndā without happiness (in misery).

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