Jan 27, 2023
Jan 27, 2023
by P C K Prem
As I Know: The Lord of the Mountains – Shiv Purana: 53
Arrival of Virbhadra at Yajna, Brihaspati’s advice, Vishnu’s arrival, words of wisdom, which speak of the eternal truth and ask the chief of ganas to do the assigned duty and thereafter, a fierce war begins and everyone witnesses the consequent destruction
No reasonable issue, in fact nothing sensible existed for negotiation. Ferocious ganas were eager to fight out and were very angry since the great lord met humiliation at the hands of injudicious, irrational and reckless Daksa. A fierce war began between the gods and the terrifying ganas. In the dreadful war, it was difficult for gods to confront the rage and strength of mighty counselors of Shiva. They were badly defeated and therefore, left the idea to help one another and after sometime, deserted the battlefield and went back to respective celestial abodes. It was the only way out to save lives. At that time, mighty Indra and a few gallant guardians of heavens exhibited perseverance and fortitude, and continued to face the challenge of ganas. However, they appeared quite miserable.
When they failed to subdue the forces of Shiva, the lord of gods, Indra along with prominent lords of heavens, went to sage Bhrispati and requested, “O holy guru, O father, the treasure of wisdom, an ocean of mercy, please advise immediately. How we can win war and attain victory? It is important for survival.”
Guru Bhrispati, the teacher of gods, thought of Shiva and said to Indra, who looked devoid of any wisdom at the hour of crisis.
Guru said, “Indra, whatever Vishnu said earlier, it is happening now. I just make it clear. Be cautious. The great god, who lavishes fruit of karmas, also takes shelter of the doers of karmas. He gives fruit of karma to him, who performs karma honestly for the good of everybody. He, who does no karma and is stationary, gets no reward or fruit from god you must know. You know that he, who takes protection at the feet of the great god, and is engaged in virtuous karmas, gets the fruit of labour and karma. You do nothing. God does. Do not take credit for things you do not do. He, who disbelieves god, gets punished.” Guru was clear and curt.
Sage Bhrispati, the guru said again, “Try to understand O Indra. Mantras, medicines, herbs, various karmas, worldly men, earthly efforts, noble deeds, the Vedas, neither past nor analysis of intellect or wisdom nor scriptures equipped with a range of gems of knowledge are competent enough to know the great god. Know the gist of wisdom of learned men of ancient times. One may try hard and adopt different methods or one may study Holy Scriptures and complete study of the Vedas ten thousand times but one will never know lord Shiva appropriately. Lord Maheshwara is impenetrable and unfathomable, the Shrutis tell, O lord Indra. Blessings of Shiva enable devotees to know about the ever calm, tranquil and formless god.”
He continued to say with emphasis but was soft, “With a pious and superb intellect, one knows the great tattva (essence of existence, the soul or the self). What is a true duty? What is not a duty? One ought to know. How one does karma perfectly you know. Keeping in view what you wish, I tell and so listen. O Indra, you came to the yajna with the guardians of heavens innocently. What great feat you want to realise? Just tell. The ganas are the soldiers of Shiva and they came here to disturb yajna. They will complete the work, for Shiva is present at the back. You know I speak the truth. Even gods cannot change the course of destiny. The lord designed and so, it will happen. I find no solution of sufferings you face and so, you cannot avoid annihilation.”
Guru Bhrispati said clearly and after they listened to the sage, the gods and the guardians of heavens were worried. The ganas of Rudra surrounded Virbhadra, and the mighty chief thought of lord Shiva. He was harsh to Indra and the lokapals (the guardians). Without wasting time, he released sharp and murderous arrows at the gods and others and injured grievously the gods of heavens and others who were present. Indra and many gods lost sense and equilibrium of mind after many pointed arrows of Virbhadra hurt and wounded and therefore, without thinking further, they escaped from the battleground, and filled different directions with agonising cries and thunderous noise.
When they ran away, Virbhadra and Rudraganas arrived at the place of yajna. All sages present were dreadfully afraid of the ganas and particularly the leader, who appeared mighty and dreadful. Nervousness and uncertainty haunted men as Virbhadra, an embodiment of destruction stood in anger. They were full of fears and began to pray with bowed heads and then said, “O lord of gods, O Supreme Lord, kindly protect yajna of Daksa. You are the yajna. None doubts. You are the karma, form, body and organ of yajna, and you are the guardian. Therefore, please protect holy karma. One finds nobody, who can protect it.” Thus, the sages and the learned men present pleaded before Vishnu for protection.
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