The Skanda Purana

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

This page describes Candradityeshvara (candraditya-ishvara-linga) which is chapter 72 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 seventy-second chapter of the Caturashiti-linga-mahatmya of the Avantya-khanda of the Skanda Purana.

Chapter 72 - Candrādityeśvara (candrāditya-īśvara-liṅga)

[Sanskrit text for this chapter is available]

Note: Śaṃbara mentioned in RV as the enemy of Indra and said to have been killed by Pradyumna (in Mbh, Anuśāsana 14.28; also Sabhā 38.22), is stated to have been burnt down by this Liṅga at the request of Candra and Āditya. Hence the Liṅga became known as Candrādityeśvara.

Īśvara said:

1. O my beloved, know that the Candrādityeśvara Liṅga is the seventy-second deity. Merely by seeing it a man shall become one having done his duties and contented.

2-9. Formerly, O goddess, Suras were defeated in battle by Śaṃbara. They left the battlefield and fled. They were eager to save their own lives.

After seeing the Moon swallowed (eclipsed) by Rāhu and realizing that he was highly agitated, Sūrya (Sun) spoke to his charioteer, the eldest son of Vinatā: “O Aruṇa, take away the chariot quickly to a place where there is no battle. Candra and Sūrya are well-reputed as stronger than Daityas. But Rāhu, the third one, hideous on account of his curved fangs, is extremely terrible. It is not known whether the Moon is killed in the battle or he has fled or is dead. It is not known where Śakra or Varuṇa has gone. It is not known where Yama is or what has happened to Dhanada.”

On being told chus by Ravi in the middle of the fight, the disabled Aruṇa guided the chariot to a place where there was no fight. In the meantime, Candra came there instantly to the place where the Lord of heaven (Sun) was present, though he was seized by Planet Rāhu.

On seeing Lord Divākara (Sun) suddenly, Candra became momentarily senseless and terrified. His eyes became tremulous.

10-23. “Even the Rudras kept engaged in battle by Śaṃbara fled in terror. Terrified by the leading Asuras, they dispersed themselves in various directions. All the Sādhyas became excessively afraid and they went to a place where there were no Dānavas. The Devas who survived in the battle were also hit. The Asuras assailed all the limbs and armours of the Devas who were fleeing, by means of still more powerful arrows. They were hit from behind and thousands of them were split and wounded. When the Asuras were busy in this, I escaped and fled by adopting the guise of an Asura because I was over-anxious to save my life. It is better that we escape before Śaṃbara returns.”

Thus the Moon, who was afraid said, O Pārvatī. Aruṇa took Candra and Āditya away in the chariot in a trice to the place where Janārdana, the Lord of the universe, was seated on Garuḍa on Mandara, in the caves whereof groups of Suras and Kinnaras had their rendezvous and, therefore, they had scattered themselves; where there were excellent sandalwood trees which delighted the womenfolk of the Suras. O lady of great renown, on seeing the Lord of the universe, holding the conch, discus, and club, the Devas, Candra and Sūrya, eulogized thus: “Obeisance, O Lord, O presiding deity of all the three worlds; (O Lord) who have defeated (surpassed) the Sun by means of your refulgence. Obeisance, O Viṣṇu; obeisance to you, O Jiṣṇu, O slayer of Kaiṭabha. Obeisance to the performer of all rites, to the saviour of the universe. Obeisance to you. Obeisance, O invincible Lord having the discus as the weapon. Obeisance to the slayer of Dānavas. Obeisance, O Lord who have occupied (measured) all the three worlds by means of three steps. O Lord whose origin is hidden, obeisance, O god of death unto the fierce hordes of the leading Daityas, O highly powerful one. Obeisance; O great Lord from whose tank-like navel, the lotus-born Lord Brahmā manifested himself. Obeisance to the Lord who procreated Virañca, the Lord of all worlds. Obeisance to the Lord who fight great battles for the destruction of the enemies of Devas. Obeisance to you, the overlord of Devas; O Lord, be our refuge.”

On hearing the prayer composed by Candra and Sūrya, Lord Janārdana consoled them, encouraging them by praises. Lord Adhokṣaja said to them:

Viṣṇu said:

24-38. Welcome, O Candra and Sūrya. Both of you are worthy of being eulogized. What is the reason for your visit here? Tell me without excitement or hesitation.

On being told thus by Nārāyaṇa, Candra and Bhāskara (Sun) said: “The Devas have been defeated in battle by Śaṃbara, the wicked demon. It is not known where the others have gone. With great effort we two escaped. We have been brought here by Aruṇa. It is our good fortune, O Lord, that you are seen. The Devas have been defeated by Śaṃbara and he is seen everywhere. Śaṃbara, the ruthless being, appears both in water and in the dry ground. As the leading Devas fled, he cut off their armours, umbrellas, bows, shields of diverse kinds, large crowns, big bows, visors of diverse kinds etc., with showers of arrows from behind. Elephants with ichor smeared all over the cheeks and horses with floccules embellished with jewel-set saddles were killed in crores. The Devas were stripped of their equipments, horses and foot-soldiers. The army of the Devas became a veritable mine of all disasters.

Then the proud leader of the Daityas returned from the great battle. Having defeated the enemies, he became highly refulgent like fire with leaping flames. He was bowed to by the groups of sages and eulogized by the great sages. Leading Daityas delighted him with blessings of victory. There in the auspicious mansion the Lord of the Daityas occupied the throne embellished with gold indicating the fullness of prosperity. Seated there the exceedingly famous king of the Daityas appeared resplendent. His limbs appeared to have grown stronger with the application of divine sandal-paste. He shone with the heavenly flowers. His limbs were touched with the lustre of crowns (of those who fell at his feet). He was fanned with white chowries. He was attended upon by the Daityas and leaders of the Daityas resuscitated aner death. The mighty one was served by personified forms of Kratus (sacrifices) with bunches of all kinds of flowers reverberating with the chirping sounds of all kinds of birds. The glory there was incomparable all over the world. There the fortune is unrestricted. Where Dānava Śaṃbara is present, there lustre, splendour and beauty are present. Thus the king of the Daityas rejoices there in the company of his attendants. He himself has become Indra. Candra and Sūrya now are his own subjects.”

39-51. On hearing his words thus, Lord Puruṣottama reflected in his mind for some time, O my beloved, and then spoke thus: “O Candra and Sūrya, the misdeeds of Śaṃbara are known to me. He has to enjoy the benefit of his penance through the granting of the boons by Brahmā. The thunderbolt was hurled at Śaṃbara formerly by Indra. He was hit in the chest, yet the Asura did not die. O Candra and Sūrya, at my bidding, do go to the excellent Mahākālavana. There you will attain Siddhi. There the infinite Mahākāla Maheśvara is present in the form of a Liṅga. In a place to the north of it there is the auspicious I.iṅga that fulfils desires. Merely by seeing it, you will have your object achieved. There is no doubt that the death of Śaṃbara will be brought about by the mass of its flames. Hence, do go there.”

On being told thus by Vāsudeva, O lady of great renown, Candra and Sūrya hastened to Mahākālavana experiencing horripilation. After seeing there Mahādeva, the immutable mass of refulgence, they worshipped him with splendid flowers and praised him with different kinds of hymns. In the meantime a voice issued forth from the middle of the Liṅga and consoled Candra and Sūrya soon, O daughter of Himalaya:

“That Daitya Śaṃbara was slain; those wicked Candra and Bhāskara (Sun) created by the Daityas went away and remained in the Pātāla region. Rāhu and Ketu were assigned positions at the extremity of the Planets with specified conditions. Along with the Devas, undoubtedly Śakra was reinstated in his post. All the Guardians of Quarters joyously returned to their respective places re-endowed with lustre and valour. You two will be moving in the firmament in all the three worlds accompanied by Planets and Constellations. As before, you will continue to be the witnesses of merits and sins.”

52-62. On being told thus by that divine voice, O lady of excellent countenance, Candra and Sūrya became delighted and contented by seeing the Liṅga. In the meantime, the Devas seated in aerial chariots came to the place in the splendid Mahākālavana where Candra and Sūrya were present. After knowing the greatness of the Liṅga, they named it with mental purity and concentration: “This highly refulgent Liṅga has been served by Candra and Sūrya. Hence it will become well-known all over the earth by the name Candrādityeśvara. By the service rendered by Candra and Sūrya, Śaṃbara along with his attendants and followers was burnt down by the mass of flames issuing from this Liṅga.” After saying this all the Devas stood in the vicinity (of the Liṅga) all round and eulogized Śiva named Candrādityeśvara with different kinds of prayers. Candra and Āditya too who were already present there, stood near the Liṅga propitiating the Lord of Devas and attained their position as before. The men who devoutly visit Śiva named Candrādityeśvara go to the region of Sūrya as well as that of Candra by means of aerial chariots resplendent like the Sun and having the auspicious splendour of the Moon. They will have happiness as long as Candra and Sūrya exist.

If men take their holy ablution in the sacred Śiprā and devoutly visit Śiva named Candrādityeśvara at the time of solar or lunar eclipse, hundred generations of their family, maternal as well as paternal, will rejoice in the worlds of Candra and Sūrya for many many years. Even those who casually perceive Candrādityeśvara Deva when Monday falls on a New-Moon day do not go to Yama’s abode.

63. Thus, O goddess, the sin-destroying power of Candrādityeśvareśa has been recounted to you. Let the details of Karabheśvara Liṅga be heard.

Like what you read? Consider supporting this website: