The Skanda Purana

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

This page describes The group of Tirthas and their eminence which is chapter 16 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 sixteenth chapter of the Dvaraka-mahatmya of the Prabhasa Khanda of the Skanda Purana.

Chapter 16 - The group of Tīrthas and their eminence

Prahlāda said:

1. Then O the foremost Brāhmaṇas! go to the good place of pilgrimage called Gadā Tīrtha. By a bath here with devotion, a man can obtain the same fruits resulting from making donation of land.

2. Make libations of water to forefathers, gods and sages as per the prescribed order in this regard. A śrāddha here ensures satisfaction/pleasure of one’s forefathers.

3. By worshipping Viṣṇu present in his appearance as boar at Gadā Tīrtha with earnest devotion, a man can attain the superior world of Viṣṇu.

4. Then go to the richly decorated Nāga Tīrtha. By a bath here with all earnestness, a man can attain the abode of Nāga.

5. Then go to the Bhadra Tīrtha, which is worshipped across the three worlds. By only a bath here, a man can get the results same as that of donating a spotted cow.

6. Then go to the very beautiful Citrā Tīrtha. By a bath here only, a man can obtain the same fruits as that accrue from donating a cow, the milk of which is a repository of abundant ghee.

7. O Brāhmaṇas! when Dvārāvat got flooded with sea water, many auspicious centres of pilgrimage there got submerged under the mighty water.

8. While most of them got extinct, some were still visible. O master Brāhmaṇas! I shall now speak all about them.

9. Go to Candrabhāgā there which is a reliever of all sins. By a bath here with devotion a man can obtain the fruits of Vājapeya i.e. a sacrifcial fire conducted with offering of clarified butter to the fire.

10. Candrā—the daughter of Nanda and Yaśodā is worshipped. She is a virgin and carries a spear, a sword and a shield in her hands.

11. She had subjugated demons like Keśī, etc. She happens to be the sister of Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma. All desires get fulfilled by having a look of hers.

12. Then the master Brāhmaṇas, go to the centre of pilgrimage called Mahiṣa Tīrtha. By taking look of it only, one can be free from all sins.

13. Then visit the Mukti Dvāra (i.e. the centre of pilgrimage acting as a door to liberation) which is a reliever of sins.

14. The sage Vasiṣṭha had brought the (river) Gomatī here. A bath here engenders the same fruits as if one has taken a bath in Gaṅgā in the Kaliyuga.

15. Flowing further down, Gomatī has met with the sea here. By a bath here with devotion, a man can attain the fruits of Aśvamedha Yajña (i.e. the sacrificial fire involving sacrifices of horses).

16. By his austere penance Bhṛgu had also founded (the idol of) Ambikā here. Hence, in the world, it has been heard to have acquired fame in conjunction with its being worshipped by Bhṛgu in the first instance.

17. Man can attain that stage of ultimate accomplishment by remembering the Goddess. On the plains of earth here, there are a good number of Śivaliṅgas.

18. Then O the uppermost Brāhmaṇas! proceed to the meritorious Kālindī pod. Kālindī—the daughter of Sun had created this auspicious pod.

19. A man has never to face any difficult situation by a bath with devotion here. Then (the Brāhmaṇas) head towards the Sāmba Tīrtha—an abater of all sins.

20. By doing śrāddha here with all love and application as per prescribed procedure, one can derive the same fruits that result from charities of cow.

21. Then go to the Śaṃkara Tīrtha that is stated to purify the three worlds. By taking a bath here with devotion, a man obtains abundant gold in his life.

22. After this go to the reliever of all sins, i.e. the Nāga lake Tīrtha. Offer of libations of water in honour of one’s forefathers as per prescribed procedure here entitles one to the abode of Nāga.

23. Then proceed towards the Lakṣmī river on its flow ahead towards the sea. A mere look of it takes away all sins.

24. O the master Brāhmaṇas! by performing śrāddha here one’s forefathers obtain liberation. Making charities here results in fulfillment of all desires of the mind beyond doubt

25. Then go to the centre of pilgrimage which destroys sins and is known as the Kambu lake. Making of libaūons here to one’s forefathers as well as performance of śrāddha here in their honour yields the fruits of Agniṣṭoma yajña.

26. After this go to the Kuśa Tīrtha and offer libations of water to forefathers. Charities here as per one’s abilities yields one the sacred world.

27. The reliever of all sins Druma Tīrtha is there in its vicinity. By performing śrāddha here, one can obtain the fruits of Vājimedha yajña (an epithet of the sacrificial fire enjoining upon one to make sacrifice of horses).

28. After this go to the Kuśa Tīrtha for the purpose of promoting and preserving contentment of one’s forefathers. Making libations of water to one’s forefathers as well as performance of śrāddha here ensures the same beyond doubt.

29. Then go to the auspicious and reliever of all sins Jāla Tīrtha. Durvāsā happened to curse the Yadu princes here out of anger.

30. Then Lord Śiva—the husband of Umā—created the Jaleśvara there. Man instantly gets free from sins by just having a look of Jaleśvara.

31. By devoted worship of Lord Śiva here, one also attains the world of Śiva.

32. Then human beings need to go to that beautiful Tīrtha known as Cakrasvāmī Tīrtha. One attains the world of Viṣṇu by taking a bath here first and then following it up with making libations of water to his forefathers.

33. Then the foremost Brāhmaṇas! go to centre of pilgrimage formed by the sage Jagatkāru [Jaratkāru?]. O the best of Brāhmaṇas! by a bath here, a man never encounters difficult situations in life.

34-35. Then O the best of Brāhmaṇas! go to the place of pilgrimage named Khañjanaka. There was a powerful demon named Khañjanaka. It has been heard that the same centre of pilgrimage had been named after the same demon. By a bath there men go to the world of Soma beyond any doubt.

36. O the good Brāhmaṇas! there have been many centres of pilgrimage here lying undisclosed/uncovered. One can raise oneself above all sins by going there.

37. Then O the best Brāhmaṇas! go to the place of pilgrimage known as Dundubhi. A visit here needs to be followed by a visit to the supreme Śiva Tīrtha and Gadā Tīrtha.

38. There is the Gaonlagā [Gāvalgaṇa?—gāvalgaṇasya] and tīrtha of the great soul Akrura [Akrūra?] here. There are also the tīrthas respectively of Balarāma and Ugrasena here.

39. There is also tīrtha of Arjuna as well as of Subhadrā here. There are also a Devakī Tīrtha and a Rohiṇī Tīrtha here.

40. The Uddhava Tīrtha as well as the Sāraṅga Tīrtha are also there. Satyabhāmā and Bhadrā have also made prominent tīrthas here.

41. The great soul Paraśurāma has also made a tīrtha here for (his father) Jāmadagnya. Prominent places of pilgrimage like Bhāsa Tīrtha and Śuka Tīrtha are also there.

42. Tīrthas for Kardama and the great soul Kapila are also there. There are also Soma Tīrtha and Rohiṇī Tīrtha.

43. In this way, I have made a mention of the other centres of pilgrimage here in brief. These also remove all sins and yield liberation for one without any doubt.

44. O the chief Brāhmaṇas! most of the centres of pilgrimage have receded to background with the advent of Kaliyuga. Either they have been innundated by the sea water or have got buried underneath the sand of the sea.

45. O Brāhmaṇas! this is the detailed account of the centres of pilgrimage which I have described to you in brief and based on my self-awareness and imagination. What more do you all desire to listen from me?

46. By listening to the accounts about them with due faith and by undertaking visits to such centres with all earnestness, O Brāhmaṇas, one goes to the abode of Viṣṇu becoming free from all sins.

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