by G. V. Tagare | 1950 | 2,545,880 words
This page describes Importance of worshipping Rukmini 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 Dvaraka-mahatmya of the Prabhasa Khanda of the Skanda Purana.
Śrī Prahlāda said:
1. O adorable Brāhmaṇas, now listen to the way the activity of worship has to be complied with, which I am describing. After bathing the idol of Lord of the universe apply perfumed ointments onto it. Then worship it with basil leaves after decorating the idol with ornaments.
4. Also give alms to the poor, the blind, the miserly and all those who come seeking refuge under you.
5. Then man has to go to the temple having the deity of the daughter of king of Vidarbha, i.e. Rukmiṇī. Worship her by lighting earthen lamps, incense sticks and by making sacrifices as well as of gifts.
7. Fear of diseases, sorrows and losses will continue for a man in his material life till he does not worship the beloved of Kṛṣṇa with devotion in the Kaliyuga.
8. Man will continue to be poor, unhappy and fight shy of strangers till he does not worship the beloved of Kṛṣṇa in the Kaliyuga.
9. A woman will continue to be attended with the sorrows and misfortune of having dead children till she does not get a look (in other words worship) of the beloved of Kṛṣṇa.
10. The male species will continue to be plagued with the fear of enemies, disruptions in family life and idiocy in the Kaliyuga till they do not have a look of the beloved of Kṛṣṇa with faith.
11-57. (Hence) it is desirable to worship Kṛṣṇa and Rukmiṇī as per settled procedure. One needs to bathe both of their idols with a mixture made up of milk, curd, honey and sugar. Offer different kinds of perfume as well as the juice of sugarcane. Bathing of the idols with water collected from different centres of pilgrimage ensures realization, of all desires on one’s part. For him, who bathes Rukmiṇī—the favourite of Kṛṣṇa in this manner, nothing in this as well as the next world appears difficult to obtain. By applying the paste made up of sandalwood, turmeric and musk on the idol of Rukmiṇī, a son begets a son for himself definitely. By worshipping her with the Mālatī flower (i.e. a scented-flower white in colour) and the lotus having one hundred petals, one earns honour of everyone getting blessed with beautiful appearance and tends to enjoy life forever. The Goddess needs to be worshipped specially with flowers like Kaner, Jasmine, Champak (i.e. a fragrant flower predominantly seen of yellow colour) lotuses particularly blooming in water bodies, Ketakī (i.e. a flower of plant called Ketaka) and flowers of pink colour. She has to be worshipped with vapours of the fragrant powder known as Aguru and with fragrant gum resin. While worshipping her, she has to be offered with soft and tender white clothes distinctively found in different regions of the world. As a dress for her covering, one needs to offer Rukmiṇī—the favourite of Kṛṣṇa a robe adorned with ornaments and jewels and especially with pearls. One who worships Rukmiṇī in this manner will never encounter unhappiness, preponderance of unrighteousness and lack of wealth in his family. He will not be childless. He will also not have to serve under people engaged in undesirable and lowly activities having pointers towards deceit. In this way the mother Goddess of the world, Rukmiṇī has to be worshipped by human beings in the Kaliyuga. The Goddess can be pleased through the offer of all edible foods. One can plead the Goddess by offering betel leaves and worshipping her with all faith by vapours of camphor before her after lighting up the same. So the Brāhmaṇas, bearing a fresh fruit with a piece of sugarcane in hand make your offering as a part of the worship as per laid-down procedure and saying a mantra like, “O daughter of ruler of Vidarbha and the beloved of Kṛṣṇa! We bow down to you. O Goddess and giver of all wishes! please accept our offerings of worship and we pay our obeisance to you.” Then guided by sincere feelings light a lamp for the purpose of waving before the idol (i.e. for āratī of the Goddess). It is desirable to do the waving of lights before the Goddess by lighting camphor in particular. Then carrying some water in a conch-shell move it around the idol attended with the requisite feeling. After that put the same conch bearing the purified water on your head. Then O Brāhmaṇas! falling flat on the ground give your reverence to the beloved of Kṛṣṇa. Do also worship other Brāhmaṇas and their wives as per your capacity. Make offering of necklace, Vermillion, clothes and stoles. Worship by fragrant flowers and by applying saffron paint on the idol. Please the Goddess with safflower, collyrium and betel leaves. Offer her eatables like sweetmeats, sugarcane, honey and butter. Along with Rukmiṇī, Keśava gets pleased by this. O best of Brāhmaṇas! Keśava specially gets pleased by offering of fruits. Then Unmattaka—the doorkeeper (of the Goddess) is to be worshipped. After bathing his idol with fragrant substances apply saffron on it. Light up incense sticks and then worship it with flowers. With regard to eatables offer him meat and alcoholic beverages. After making enough of such different kinds of offerings offer the idol grounded rice. Then worship sixty-four female ascetics placed behind his idol. Then worship the bearer of all accomplishment who is also the Kṣetrapāla, i.e. the protector of territory everywhere (i.e. Śiva). Worship the proprietress of embodiment of various forms and the seven female ascetics there. Behind them are seated the eight wives of Kṛṣṇa, viz. Rukmiṇī, Satyabhāmā, the auspicious Jāmbavatī, Mitrabindā, Kālindī, Bhadrā, Nāgnajito [Nāgnajita?] and Lakṣmaṇā who are favourites of Kṛṣṇa. Worship all of them there. They are all worshipable as per desirable procedure by offering of curd and kheer (i.e. a preparation made of rice and milk added with sugar). One needs to stay up for the entire night as a religious duty after lighting earthen lamps accompanied by songs with beating of drums for this purpose. Besides, one also needs to repeatedly proclaim their names while doing this. One who worships these eight wives of Kṛṣṇa in this way gets blessed with children, grandchildren and with wealth as well as good fortune. He also happens to realise all his wishes by the grace of Viṣṇu. So what is the need of making a great number of donations or for that matter of observance of any religious vow with all strictness for him as everything gets attainable for him by having a look of and worship of Rukmiṇī—the mother Goddess of the world and the favourite of Kṛṣṇa. Again, why does he have to conduct a good number of yajñas and comply with the practice of making paramount religious fees for the same as he has already taken a look of and pleased Rukmiṇī—the mother Goddess of the world and the dearest of Kṛṣṇa. He who has taken a look of Rukmiṇī—ṃe mother Goddess of the world and the dearest of Kṛṣṇa can be considered to have made all donations, havans and the repeated utterances of name any God within forever on his part. That individual can be considered to have acquired those eight aspects of perfection/accomplishment without any difficulty who has happened to have had a sight of the favourite of Kṛṣṇa—by visiting Dvārāvat. His life can be assumed to have become successful as well as all wishes of his mind to have actuated in reality who has happened to have taken a look of the darling of Mādhava (i.e. Rukmiṇī) after visiting the abode of Kṛṣṇa in Kaliyuga (i.e. Dvārkā). What value, winning a kingdom or for that matter attainment of liberation can have for him who is yet to have a look of Rukmiṇī—ṃe mother Goddess of the world and the dearest of Kṛṣṇa? Hence with all efforts men must worship and take a look of Rukmiṇī—the beloved of Kṛṣṇa as the same grants fulfillment of all desires. She in particular, is always to be worshipped during the first nine days of the month of Alvina (i.e. September) which are considered sacred for the Goddess Durgā. People who worship the beloved of Hari on the ninth day of the same period by bathing her idol, by offering perfumes as well as adequate edible substances and stay up a night by lighting earthen lamps accompanied by singing religious discourses in her honour to the accompaniments of drums and attempt to proclaim her name loudly, can happen to please her—the daughter of Bhiṣmaka [Bhīṣmaka?], resulting in accomplishment of all of their desires. Besides, a sincere worship of her on the fourteenth day of the month of Kārtika, i.e. October/November on Deepawali [Dīpāvalī?] as per the injunctions of Śāstra results in attainment of all that have been specifically aspired for or willed. Those who worship the mother of Kandarpa (i.e Kāmadeva and Rukmiṇī) with fragrant flowers on the eighth day of the brighter period of moon in the month of Māgha (i.e. January) and present before her idol many gifts can be understood to have made their lives including their wishes successful. Men happening to have a look at the dearest to Mādhava, i.e. the Goddess Rukmiṇī on the twelfth day of the month of Chaitra, i.e March can be understood to have made their material life fortunate. They get blessed with children and grandchildren. They get embellished with wealth and fortune. In life, they get free from diseases. This way, they happen to get that position of good health. Men who worship the beloved of Kṛṣṇa on the eighth day of the month of Jyeṣṭha (i.e. May) get all their wishes fulfilled beyond any doubt. Alternatively by worshipping the Mother in the month of Bhādra (i.e. September) men get free from all sins and attain the passage to the world of Viṣṇu. Those who take a look of Rukmiṇī along with Kṛṣṇa on the twelfth day in the month of Kārtika, i.e. November there will be no room for fear of anything at any time for such people. One who takes a look of Rukmiṇī and Kṛṣṇa present here together in their mutual company can be considered to have made his/her life successful. He/she gets blessed with sons and children having a relatively longer life. He/she happens to get blessed with undecaying wealth and fortune. Poverty/misery hardly ever occur for him/her. As it is, he who takes a look of Rukmiṇī and worships her—the beloved of Kṛṣṇa, goes to the world of Viṣṇu getting free from all sins. It is said that the meritorious fruits attended with taking a bath as well as making donations at all the centres of pilgrimage endure well into the Kaliyuga due to the abiding presence of Kṛṣṇa. O Brāhmaṇas! there can be no scope for liberation in the Kaliyuga without a visit to Dvārāvat. Kṛṣṇa had devised it in ancient times to tie down Bali. O great and foremost Brāhmaṇas! the God by his grace had also granted him that (i.e. liberation). The best of Brāhmaṇas, the great soul Mārkaṇḍeya had happened to say so to Pradyumna in olden times keeping in view his efforts in this direction (i.e. of attaining liberation).