by G. V. Tagare | 1950 | 2,545,880 words
This page describes The Commanding Peak of the Mountain which is chapter 52 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 fifty-second chapter of the Arbuda-khanda of the Prabhasa Khanda of the Skanda Purana.
1. Then the best of kings, proceed to the commanding peak of the mountain. Here Gaurī had undergone penance and earned her well-being. This is how it has been heard of in the world.
2. A man becomes free from all sins by just having a look of it. He also attains fortune of the highest order surpassing a span of seven rebirths.
3. O chief of the Sages! when did the Goddess undergo severe penance there? What for and what is the significance of this? I have a curiosity. Please speak out.
4. O king! listen to the god-given and wonderful story of this as heard of in the world. By merely listening to this one gets relieved of all sins.
5. In olden times, after learning about Śiva’s intense attachment with Gaurī, all gods taken over with fear, sat down in a group and began to consult one another.
6-7. Sitting in separate groups they told themselves that “if the semen of the Three-eyed, i.e., of Lord Śiva fell in the region of Gaurī, definitely ours as well as of the entire world’s downfall would happen. Hence, let all of us step out on the mission of killing the offsprings.”
9. Nandi [Nandī?] said, “The God is spending time with Gaurī in seclusion. Hence all of you please return to your respective abodes.”
10. Without reacting to the attendant, the gods left quickly. But they sent ‘air’ in disguise there asking him to tell (Lord Śiva).
11. They told, “Air, go near Śiva and ask him not to produce offsprings for the gods themselves are pleading for the same out of fear.”
12. Then ‘Air’ hurried to the place where Maheśvara was there for the time being and told him the words aloud as desired of him by the gods.
13. The God (i.e., Śiva) then became very ashamed of himself. He immediately left the company of Gaurī, got up and proceeded ahead saying it would be like that.
14. Gaurī then became too unhappy to curse the gods.
15-16. Gaurī said: “Like the gods having come here, have deprived me of offspring, similarly they would also be deprived of children. As Air has come to this place which is prohibited for people, he will thus remain without body forever.”
17. After saying like this, the Goddess who was full of anger, took a deep breath, left her husband behind and headed for the meritorious Arbuda mountain.
18-20. With her body and mind together, she engaged herself in penance there for a son. Then after a passage of thousand years, Maheśvara along with Indra and other gods came before her. Indra told her with all humility, “The God Śiva out of his own feeling of shame desisted from getting intimate with you. Now he has come back. You evince your greatness by making him your own gracefully.”
21. The Goddess said, “The King of gods, my husband left my side as per your words which was conveyed to me in the flow of time. Only after getting a son that I shall again come near him.”
22. Apprised of her determination in this manner, the God (i.e., Śiva) himself came before her and asked her with a gentle smile to be kind towards him.
23-27. (The God said): O beautiful-faced Pārvatī! the allround welfare of gods has always remained my pursuit either (be it) as a gift of vision on my part or as my words. I have only prevented you from having an untimely son. O Goddess of gods! your efforts at our physical union were only in the direction of having a son. Darling, a son will be born out of your own body. Without any doubt, it is going to materialize on the fourth day (from now) by virtue of my grace. The Goddess of gods, putting together the dirt collected from different parts of your body, you can give shape of a form and appearance as per your sweet will. Assuming many forms, he will be the cause of fulfilment of all gods and especially of the demons as also of the mortals.
28. After the Three-eyed God’s (i.e., Śiva’s) saying like this, the Goddess of gods (i.e., Gaurī) became satisfied and began getting into rounds of conversation with her husband in an effective manner.
30. The given shape got life coincidentally as per the words of Hara. Then the great king, the same turned out and became the leader of all mortals on earth. That is how its fame began to spread.
31. Glorified as Vināyaka, he became an object of worship of the inhabitants of three worlds. From the mouths of all gods, he was named ‘Vināyaka’.
32-36. Then all gods got themselves engrossed in performance of activities dear to the Goddess. Then the king, to bless the Goddess with a boon they said, “This son of yours, the Goddess, will always remain in the forefront of us. After complying with his worship at the first instance that all gods will be fit for acceptance of their respective worship. The very act of worship here in this pleasing summit of the mountain is auspicious. Taking a look of it takes away all sins of humans. Those who take a bath here in the good and welfare-causing water of the pool will attain the ultimate place, devoid of old age and death. A bath here, backed with all sincerity and earnestness on the third day of the waxing period of Moon in the month of Māgha (i.e., January) will be like welcoming happiness beyond the span of seven rebirths.”