The Skanda Purana

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

This page describes Kalaha Attains Liberation which is chapter 25 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-fifth chapter of the Karttikamasa-mahatmya of the Vaishnava-khanda of the Skanda Purana.

Chapter 25 - Kalahā Attains Liberation

[Sanskrit text for this chapter is available]

Dharmadatta said:

1. By performing charitable gifts and holy rites etc. in a Tīrtha, all the sins perish. But you are not authorized for it because you are a ghost in a dead body.

2. My mind is distressed on seeing your misery. Without redeeming you from the misery my mind will not be at ease.

3. Hence you do attain the good goal by means of half the merit that I have earned throughout my life from Kārttika Vrata.

Nārada said:

4. After saying thus, Dharmadatta sprinkled on her water mixed with Tulasī and repeated the twelve-syllabled Mantra (oṃ namo bhagavate vāsudevāya):

5. Immediately she became liberated from ghosthood. She assumed a divine form comparable to the flames of blazing fire. In beauty she appeared like Indirā.

6. Then she prostrated flat on the ground like a rod and bowed down to that Brāhmaṇa. Then with words choked with delight, she spoke thus:

Kalahā said:

7. O excellent Brāhmaṇa, with your favour I have been redeemed from hell. Certainly you have been like a boat unto me, as I was about to be drowned in the ocean of sin.

Nārada said:

8. As she was speaking thus to the Brāhmaṇa, she saw a sparkling aerial chariot coming from the sky accompanied by attendants who had assumed the form of Viṣṇu.

9. The gatekeepers Puṇyaśīla and Suśīla made her get into that excellent aerial chariot. She was (there) served by groups of celestial damsels.

10. Dharmadatta gazed at that aerial chariot with great wonder. On seeing those two in the form of Viṣṇu he prostrated flat on the ground.

11. Puṇyaśīla and Suśīla raised the Brāhmaṇa who was bowing down. After congratulating him, they spoke these righteous words:

The Attendants said:

12. Well done, well done, O excellent Brāhmaṇa. You are omniscient. You are merciful to the distressed. You are engaged in the holy rites of Viṣṇu.

13. Ever since your childhood you have been performing the excellent Kārttikavrata. Half of the merit thereof you have donated. Hence your merit has become doubled.

14. All the sins of yours that had accumulated in the course of hundreds of births have perished. The sin of this woman arising out of her previous Karmas has been destroyed through the holy baths (of yours, transferred to her).

15. Through the meritorious deeds of Hari Jāgaraṇa (vigil on the Ekādaśī day) etc. she has got into this aerial chariot and is being taken to Vaikuṇṭha. O gentle Sir, she will enjoy different kinds of pleasures.

16. By means of the merit of offering lamps she has attained the Sārūpya of the (Supreme) Refulgence. She has come to the presence of Viṣṇu through the auspicious worships of Tulasī and Kārttika Vratas, all given by you, O storehouse of mercy.

17. At the end of this birth you along with your two wives will go to the world of Vaikuṇṭha, reach the presence of Viṣṇu and attain Sārūpya (indentity of form with Viṣṇu).

18. O Dharmadatta, those people by whom Viṣṇu has been devoutly propitiated like you, are blessed and contented. They have accomplished their object. Their birth is fruitful.

19. What is it that Viṣṇu does not give to the embodied beings when (he is) perfectly propitiate? The son of Uttānapāda (Dhruva) had been established as Dhruva formerly by him.

20. Merely by remembering his name all the embodied beings attain beatitude.

21. The great elephant who had been caught in the jaws of a crocodile, became liberated formerly by remembering his name. He reached the presence of Viṣṇu and has become (the attendant) named Jaya.[1]

22. Since Viṣṇu has been worshipped by you, you will go to his presence accompanied by both the wives. You will stay there for thousands of years.

23-24. Then as the merits dwindle, you will go to the earth. Then you will become a famous king named Daśaratha[2] in the solar race. These two wives will be born as your wives then also. This woman who secured half of your merits will be your third wife then.

25. There also Viṣṇu will come to your presence on the earth for carrying out the task of Devas. He will be born as your son.

26. Neither Yajñas nor charitable gifts, nor Tīrthas are superior to the Vratas performed by you ever since your birth, as the Vratas give satisfaction to Viṣṇu.

27. O great Brāhmaṇa, you are blessed because this Vrata which causes satisfaction to the Sire of the universe has been performed by you. Through half of that merit this woman has become (redeemed and) successful. She is being taken to the world of Viṣṇu and she attains the salvation of Sālokya type.

Footnotes and references:


A reference to Gajendra Mokṣa.


An example of the use of rebirth to explain (a supposed) future event—the background of Rāma story.

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