Puranic encyclopaedia

by Vettam Mani | 1975 | 609,556 words | ISBN-10: 0842608222

This page describes the Story of Atharva included the Puranic encyclopaedia by Vettam Mani that was translated into English in 1975. The Puranas have for centuries profoundly influenced Indian life and Culture and are defined by their characteristic features (panca-lakshana, literally, ‘the five characteristics of a Purana’).

Story of Atharva

Among the Vedas, this has the fourth place. It comprises different kinds of incantations of occult powers for the destruction of enemies. Atharvan the son of Vasiṣṭha was the author of this Veda. In Chapter 6 of the third section of Viṣṇu Purāṇa the following reference is made to Atharvaveda: "Sumantu Maharṣi who was of infinite glory, first taught this Atharvaveda to his disciple Kabandha. (Sumantu Maharṣi was the son of Jaimini, who was the disciple of Vedavyāsa). Kabandha divided Atharvaveda into two parts and communicated them to two Maharṣis named Devadarśa and Pathya. Devadarśa’s disciples were: Medhā, Brahmabali, Śautkāyani and Pippalāda. Pathya had three disciples named Jābāli, Kumudādi and Śaunaka. They also made Atharvaveda compilations. Śaunaka divided his compilation into two and gave one part to Babhru and the other to Saindhava. Muñjikeśa learnt it from Saindhava and divided the compilation first into two and later into three parts. The five divisions of the Atharvaveda—Nakṣatrakalpa, Vedakalpa, Saṃhitākalpa, Āṅgirasakalpa and Śāntikalpa, were made by Muñjikeśa. Nakṣatrakalpa contains Brahma’s works: Saṃhitākalpa contains Mantra Vidhi; Āngirasakalpa contains ābhicāra and Śāntikalpa contains taming of horses, elephants etc.

The mantras (incantations) in Atharvaveda and their uses are given below:—



1. Suparṇastava Getting rid of serpents and snakepoison (Sarpa-bādhā-nivāraṇam).

2. Indreṇadatta Fulfilment of all desires (Sarvakāma-siddhi).

3. Imā Devī Attainment of peace (Sarvaśānti-karma).

5. Yamasyālokāt Prevention of bad dreams (Duḥ svapna-śamana).

6. Indraścandraśca pañcavaṇija Prosperity in commerce and business (Vāṇijya-lābha).

7. Kāmojevāji Enjoyment of women (Strīsaubhāgyam).

8. Tubhyamevajavīma Equal to thousand sacrifices (Ayuta-homa-tulyam).

9. Agnegobhinna Strengthening of the intellect (Buddhi-vṛddhi).

10. Dhṛuvaṃdhṛuveṇa Attainment of posts of honour (Sthāna-lābha)

11. Alaktajīva- Profit from agriculture (Kṛṣilābha).

12. Ahan te bhagna Prosperity in general.

13. Ye me pāśā Freedom from imprisonment (bandhana-vimukti).

14. Śapatvaha Destruction of enemies (Śatrunāśam).

15. Tvamuttama Enhancement of fame (yaśovṛddhi).

16. Yathāmṛgavati Enjoyment of women (Strī saubhāgyam).

17. Yenapehadiśa Birth of children (Grabha-lābha).

18. Ayante yoniḥ Getting sons (Putra-lābha).

19. Śivaśivābhiḥ Prosperity in general (Saubhāgyavṛddhi).

20. Bṛhaspatirnaḥ pari pātu Blessings (Mārga-maṅgala).

21. Muñcāvitva Warding off death (Mṛtyunivāraṇa).

When these mantras are chanted several oblations are made to the sacrificial fire. Substances like Camatā, ghee, rice, milk are thrown into the fire as offerings. (Agni Purāṇa, Chapter 262).

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