Trishashti Shalaka Purusha Caritra

by Helen M. Johnson | 1931 | 742,503 words

This page describes Marriage with Vidyadhari Shyama which is the eighth part of chapter II of the English translation of the Neminatha-caritra, contained within the “Trishashti Shalaka Purusha Caritra”: a massive Jain narrative relgious text composed by Hemacandra in the 12th century. Neminatha in jainism is the twenty-second Tirthankara (Jina) and one of the 63 illustrious beings or worthy persons.

Part 8: Marriage with Vidyādharī Śyāmā

Then he set out and reached a terrible forest and Vārṣṇeya, seeking water in it, went to a pool Jalāvarta. An elephant there, like a living Mt. Vindhya, ran at him and the prince, like a lion, tamed it and mounted it. Two Khecaras, Arcimālin and Pavanaṭjaya, saw him mounted on the elephant, took him to the garden Kuṭjarāvarta and released him.

There the Vidyādhara-lord Aśanivega, gave him his daughter, Śyāmā, and he sported with her. Pleased with her playing of the lute, Vārṣṇeya gave her a boon. She asked, “May you never be separated from me.” He asked the reason for the boon and she related:

“Arcimālin was king in the city Kinnaragīta on Vaitāḍhya. He had two sons, Jvalanavega and Aśanivega. Arcimālin installed Jvalana on the throne and took the vow. Aṅgaraka, Jvalana’s son, was borne by Vimalā and I am Aśanivega’s daughter by Suprabhā. Jvalana installed Aśanivega on the throne and went to heaven. Aṅgaraka banished him (Aśanivega) by the power of magic arts and seized the kingdom.

My father went to Aṣṭāpada and there he asked a flying-ascetic, Aṅgiras by name, ‘Will the kingdom be mine or not?’ The muni said, ‘The kingdom will be yours by the power of your daughter Śyāmā’s husband. He can be recognized by his taming of the elephant of Jalāvarta.’ From confidence in the muni’s speech my father founded a city here and sent two Khecaras to be always at Jalāvarta. You were brought here by them when they had seen you tame and mount the elephant and you were married to me by my father, Aśanivega, lord.

In the past this agreement was made between noble Indra Dharaṇa, Indra of the Nāgas, and the Vidyādharas:

‘Whoever kills a man near an Arhat’s shrine, or one with a woman, or an attendant on a sādhu, even if he has good magic arts, shall be deprived of his magic arts.’

For this reason, master, no-separation was chosen by me as a boon. May the wicked Aṅgāraka. not kill you alone. “The tenth son of Andhakavṛṣṇi said, “Very well,” and passed the time with her in amusements from practicing the arts.

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