Shiva Purana: Rudra Samhita: War - 15

As I Know: The Lord of the Mountains – Shiv Purana: 100

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Devotion to lord Shiva is a blessing…if a man is a sinner but later, regrets and is remorseful, the great lord forgives…now, Kumara narrates the tale of daitya Gaja, a son of Mahishasura

Shiva had been kindhearted and generous to devotees. Even if a sinner or a man of brute and violent temper was remorseful and penitent for the sins and crimes he committed lord invariably forgave, and blessed. That virtue Shiva had, the sages emphasised in ancient times. Conduct of many daityas illustrated this aspect. Kumara later narrated the tale of another daitya Gaja, a son of Mahishasura. Goddess had killed his father Mahisha and so to wreak vengeance on gods, he undertook severe tapa and pleased Brahma, who blessed Gaja that none under the control of kama, worldly love and passion would be able to kill him and thus, Gaja would remain invincible and dominant.

Out of pride and conceit, he created difficulties for gods and sanctified souls, and took all lokapalas (custodians of different regions) under control and then, began to torture citizens of Kashi. Gods of heavens prayed before Sankara, who defeated him. He prayed before the lord. Pleased with the devotee, the lord blessed him with the name Kritivasa and gave consent to him to situate ‘the self’ at the place of moksa in the image of lingam – called kritvasaiswara and the lord covered the body with the large skin of devotee daitya Gaja.

Kumara again told that once Diti, the mother of Hiryanakasa was sad on his death. Dundu-bhiniara-lada consoled Diti and said, “Brahmins are strength of gods and if they are destroyed, none will organise yajnas and when yajnas do not exist, gods will not get food, the sacrificial offering and so will become weak and at that time, he will defeat gods.”

In an astute, cruel and sneaky move, he began to kill and eat brahmins. On the day of holy Shivaratri, he tried to kill a brahmin when he had been meditating on Shiva, so he failed but the lord understood and when he wanted to kill the devotee, lord took him in strong armpit and when the devotees noticed they began to praise the great lord. Shiva never allowed wicked forces to grow but on the other hand, granted full protection to devotees against possible attack of evil.

Once Brahma blessed Vidal and Utpal, the powerful daityas, who as wished had blessing from the lord that no man on earth would even be able to kill them and so, they created problems for the gods. Brahma advised them to meditate on Shiva. Destiny played its role. Sage Narada once praised the divine beauty of Parvati before the wicked daityas and the beauty of goddess encouraged them to abduct her. Disguised as ganas they came near Ambika. Shiva gave a hint, so goddess Parvati hit them with a ball, and so they collapsed and thus, the sanctity of Kashi was glorified which was blissful for devotees. Shiva’s images at different locations were sanctuaries for devotees and whoever, genuinely undertook meditation, it destroyed sufferings, provided pleasures and comforts of worldly life and acted as a path to moksa. Kumara averred that it fulfilled all desires of true devotees.

After the coming up of Kritvasaiswara lingam an image of moksa at Kashi, daityas Vidal and Utpal tried to create problems for the gods of heavens but on the signal of lord, goddess ensured sanctity of holy city Kashi and later, killed wicked daityas. In fact, Shiva’s images in different regions of Kashi are tirthas for the pilgrims and devotees.

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More by :  P C K Prem

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