Issuu on Google+

ANCIENT INDIAN TRADITION AND MYTHOLOGY SERIES [VOLUMES RELEASED]

ŚIVA1-4 LIŃGA 5-6 BHĀGAVATA 7-11 GARUDA 12-14 NĀRADA 15-19 KŪRMA 20-21 BRAHMĀNDA 22-26 AGNI 27-30 VARĀHA 31-32 BRAHMA 33-36 VĀYU 37-38 PADMA 39-48 SKANDA, PARTS I-XIII, 49-61 [VOLUMES UNDER PREPARATION]

SKANDA, PARTS XIV-XXIV BHAVISYA BRAHMAVATVARTA DEVĪBHĀGAVATA KĀLIKĀ MĀRKANDEYA MATSYA VĀMANA VISNU VISNUDHARMOTTARA


THE

BRAHMĀNDA PURĀNA Translated and Annotated by

DR. G.V. TAGARE

PART I

M O T I L A L BANARSIDASS P U B L I S H E R S PRIVATE LIMITED • D E L H I


First

Edition:

Reprint:

Delhi,

Delhi,

1983 2000

© MOTILAL BANARSIDASS PUBLISHERS PRIVATE LIMITED All Rights Reserved

ISBN: 81-208-0354-x

Also available at:

MOTILAL

BANARSIDASS

236, 9th Main III Block, Jayanagar, Bangalore 560 011 41 U.A. Bungalow Road, Jawahar Nagar, Delhi 110 0 0 7 8 Mahalaxmi Chamber, Warden Road, Mumbai 400 026 120 Royapettah High Road, Mylapore, Chennai 6 0 0 0 0 4 Sanas Plaza, 1302, Baji Rao Road, Pune 411 0 0 2 8 Camac Street, Calcutta 700 017 Ashok Rajpath, Patna 800 0 0 4 Chowk, Varanasi 221 001

U N E S C O COLLECTION OF REPRESENTATIVE WORKS—Indian Series.

This book has been accepted in the Indian Translation Series of the UNESCO Collection of Representative Works, jointly sponsored by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the Government of India

Printed in India BY J A I N E N D R A PRAKASH JAIN AT SHRI J A I N E N D R A PRESS, A-45 N A R A I N A , P H A S E I, N E W D E L H I 110 0 2 8 A N D P U B L I S H E D B Y N A R E N D R A PRAKASH JAIN F O R M O T I L A L B A N A R S I D A S S P U B L I S H E R S PRIVATE LIMITED, B U N G A L O W R O A D , D E L H I 110 0 0 7


PUBLISHER'S N O T E T h e purest gems lie hidden in the b o t t o m of the ocean or in the d e p t h of rocks. O n e has to dive into the ocean or delve into t h e rocks -to find t h e m out. Similarly, t r u t h lies concealed in t h e language which with the passage of time h a s become obsolete. M a n has to learn t h a t language before he discovers t h a t t r u t h . But he has n e i t h e r the means n o r the leisure to embark on t h a t course. We have, therefore, planned to help h i m acquire knowledge by an easier course- We have started the series of Ancient Indian Tradition and Mythology in English T r a n s l a t i o n . O u r goal is to universalize knowledge t h r o u g h the most p o p u l a r international m e d i u m of expression. T h e publication of t h e P u r Ä n a s in English translation is a step towards t h a t goal.


PREFACE T h e present volume contains the Brahmānda Purāna, P a r t I ( C h a p t e r s 1-38) completing the first-two sections (Prakriyā a n d Anusañga) of t h e text in English Translation. T h i s is the Twenty-second volume in the series which we h a v e planned on Ancient Indian Tradition and Mythology. T h e project of the Series was envisaged a n d financed in 1970 by Lala Sundar Lai J a i n of Messrs Motilal Banarsidass. Hitherto twentyone volumes of the Series (comprising English translation of Śiva, Liñga, Bhāgavata, Garuda, Nārada a n d Kūrma Purānas) have been published a n d released for sale. T h i s P u r ā n a , like all o t h e r P u r ā n a s , is encyclopaedic in c h a r a c t e r . It deals with miscellaneous topics such as Cosmogony, Religion, Philosophy History, Geography a n d Astronomy. It is called Brahmānda since it gives explanation of the real state of affairs a b o u t the universe. It is divided i n t o four sections : Prakriyā, Anusañga, Upodghūta a n d Upasamhāra. It is a c c o m p a n i e d by Lalitā-Māhātmya ( t h e glorification of t h e Goddess L a l i t ā ) in 40 c h a p t e r s . T h e present volume consists of two Sections viz. Prakriyā a n d Anusañga. Section I Prakriyā consists of five chapters which deal w i t h the creation of the universe in the light of the V e d i c metaphysics which it expounds in detail in the P u r ā n i c m a n n e r . T h i s section describes the original state of e q u i l i b r i u m of gunas ( q u a l i t i e s ) , the laying of the Golden Egg, t h e e m e r ­ gence of the creator lord B r a h m a from it. T h e second section Anusañga, which this volume includes, contains 33 chapters ( 6 - 3 8 ) . It is a connected continuation of the theme of Prakriyā p&da inasmuch as it recounts t h e a c c o u n t of the b i r t h as well as the genealogies of Brahmarsis (Brahmanical sages), Devarsis (Celestial sages) a n d Rājarsis (Royal sages). T h e two sections which complete this volume illustrate the two characteristics of a M a h ā p u r ā n a viz., Sarga ( C r e a t i o n ) a n d Vathśa ( g e n e a l o g y ) , a l t h o u g h t h e l a t t e r trait is resumed in t h e third section, n a m e l y t h e Upodghāta of t h e next volume.


(

via )

T h e aim of this series is to universalize knowledge t h r o u g h t h e most p o p u l a r i n t e r n a t i o n a l m e d i u m of expression, namely English. O l d Sanskrit T e x t has been rendered i n t o English as precisely as possible. The translation is based on the standard edition of the Veńkateśvara Press. T h e text is well edited, still it presents problems, h a r d to be overcome by m e r e translation. T h e need of annotations is evident therefore. T h e learned t r a n s l a t o r has a d d e d a m p l e materials in t h e footnotes which facilitate correct interpretation of the text. He has p u t elabo­ r a t e c o m m e n t s in these notes on each a n d every problem of i m p o r t a n c e a n d discussed textual variations in the verses common to other P u r ā n a s . His critical I n t r o d u c t i o n needs no •comment in t h e preface. T h e comparative study of the Javanese text of B r a h m ā n d a P u r ā n a in K a v i language w i t h the Sanskrit text of the present P u r ā n a is a feature t h a t shall be most wel­ comed by the reader. We h a v e included Abbreviations in this p a r t . T h e y will be r e p e a t e d in the succeeding p a r t s too w i t h such additions as are m a d e in t h e notes of those parts. T h e general I n d e x will be a p p e n d e d to t h e last p a r t . Acknowledgement of Obligations It is our pleasant d u t y to p u t on record o u r sincere t h a n k s t o D r . R . N . D a n d e k a r a n d the U N E S C O authorities for their kind encouragement a n d valuable h e l p which render this work m o r e useful t h a n it would otherwise have been. We a r e extremely grateful to D r . G. V. T a g a r e w h o has meticu­ lously a n d delightfully accomplished this onerous task. T h e critical I n t r o d u c t i o n , the lucid translation a n d comprehensive a n n o t a t i o n s are, in fact, his m o n u m e n t a l contributions to the studies i n Indology. W e must t h a n k Shri T . V . Paramesh•war Iyer for his valuable assistance in the p r e p a r a t i o n of this work. We should also express o u r g r a t i t u d e to all those persons w h o have offered suggestions for improving the s a m e .

—Editor


CONTENTS

vn

PREFACE

xiii

ABBREVIATIONS

INTRODUCTION I

xvii xvii

T h e title B r a h m ā n d a

xviii-xix

E x t e n t , Position, Transmission

xix

T h e p l a c e of Composition II

Text-criticism : Materials (i) C h a p t e r Concordance of B r a h m ā n d a a n d Vāyu P u r ā n a s

xx the XX

(ii) T h e B r a h m ā n d a a n d N ā r a d a P u r ā n a s

xxii

(iii) T h e O l d J a v a n e s e B r a h m ā n d a P u r ā n a

xxvi

III

T h e Brahmānda as a Mahā-Purāna

XXX

IV

Religious Sects i n the B r ā h m ā n d a P u r ā n a : Śaivism—Vaisnavism — Sāktism — T h e S u n worship — An obscure c u l t : — G o d h a r m a — Non-Vedic religions

xliv

D h a r m a Ś ā s t r a — A n c i e n t L o r e s — T h e Science of Music

Iviii

Religion a n d Philosophy i n the B r a h m ā n d a Purāna: Vedānta—Sāńkhya—Yoga—Bhakti— T a n t r a — o t h e r points

lxiii

T h e P a r a ś u r ā m a Legend

lxvi

V VI

VII VIII IX X

Historical T r a d i t i o n i n the B r a h m ā n d a P u r ā n a

lxxiv

T h e D a t e o f the B r a h m ā n d a P u r ā n a

lxxix

Appendix to the d a t e of the B r a h m ā n d a P u r ā n a

lxxxi


(

x

)

PART I SECTION

I—PRAKRIYA

CHAPTERS

1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

SECTION

Contents of the B r a h m ā n d a P u r ā n a T h e Legend of N a i m i s ā r a n y a Evolution of the Universe : T h e Creation of Hiranyagarbha Constitution of the world ( T h e Cosmic E g g ) Creation of t h e Universe

28 32 36

II—ANUSAÑGA

55

3 22

CHAPTERS 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15.

K a l p a s and M a n v a n t a r a s ; their D u r a t i o n Knowledge About the World God Brahma's Mental Creation : g o d s , sages, manes, a n d h u m a n beings created Progeny of R u d r a : Birth of Bhrgu and Others Magnificence of God Śiva : Birth of Nilalohita : His eight Names a n d Forms Creation of Sages R a c e of Agni R e a l N a t u r e o f K ā l a — T i m e : Seasons as Pitrs (Manes) R a c e of Priyavrata L e n g t h a n d extent of the E a r t h : Description of J a m b ū d v ī p a

16. Description of B h ā r a t a 17. Varsas o f J a m b ū d v ī p a , H a r i a n d I l ā v r t a 18. J a m b ū d v ī p a ; T h e Bindu L a k e — I t s four streams 19. Plaksa a n d o t h e r Continents 20. Description of t h e Netherworlds 2 1 . T h e Solar System. M o v e m e n t s of heavenly Luminaries : Division of T i m e

57 6586 93 101 109^ 113 120134 141 149 162 165 174 192 19ft


(

xi

)

22.

T h e Divine Luminaries, Varieties of clouds. Divisions of Stratosphere, the C h a r i o t of the Sun-God 23. Information a b o u t Heavenly bodies. The m o v e m e n t of the Polar S t a r 24. T h e a r r a n g e m e n t of the Heavenly L u m i n a r i e s . T h e Sun, the source of Light to L u m i n a r i e s 25.

Origin

of

the

Epithet

214 222 232

N ī l a k a n t h a . Siva

swallowing poison 26. O r i g i n of t h e Lińga-image of Siva 27. Śiva cursed by D ā r u v a n a sages. I n s t a l l a t i o n of Śiva Liñga—Injunctions regarding Ashbāth 2 8 . M e e t i n g of P u r u r a v a s a n d Pitrs. Performance of a n n u a l obsequies on the New Moon D a y 29. Cycle of Yugas. Characteristics of Yugas 30. I n a u g u r a t i o n of the Sacrificial Cult. Fall of K i n g Vasu for denunciation of Sacrifices 31. T h e four Yugas : Castes a n d Stages of Life 32. Yugas a n d Classes of People. Lineage of Sages 33. Characteristics of Sages a n d of M a n t r a s 34. Vyāsa and his Disciples 35. Legends of Yājñavalkya a n d Vyāsa, Description of S v ā y a m b h u v a M a n v a n t a r a

247 258

265 277 287 296 301 313 325 331 338

36.

T h e Lineage o f M a n u , M a n v a n t a r a s Milking of the E a r t h

361

37.

Cāksusa M a n v a n t a r a : Dynasty of Vaivasvata Manu

381

38. " T h e Vaivasvata M a n v a n t a r a : Creation

The

Mārīca 386


ABBREVIATIONS

C o m m o n a n d self-evident abbreviations such a s c h ( s ) — c h a p t e r (s), p — p a g e , p p — p a g e s , v—verse, w — v e r s e s , F t n — footnote, Hist. I n d . Philo—History of I n d i a n Philosophy a r e n o t included in this list. ABORI

Annals of the Bhandarkar Institute, P o o n a .

AGP

S. M. Ali's The Geography of Purānas, P P H , New Delhi, 1973.

AIHT

Ancient Indian Historical Tradition, F. E. Pargiter, Motilal Banarsidass ( M L B D ) , Delhi.

AITM

Ancient Indian Tradition and Mythology Series, M L B D , Delhi, 1972 onwards. Agni Purāna, G u r u M a n d a l Edition ( G M ) , Calcutta, 1957.

AP Arch. S. R e p .

Oriental Research

Archaeological Survey R e p o r t .

AV

Atharva Veda, Svadhyaya M a n d a l , A u n d h .

Bd. P.

Brahmānia Purāna, M L B D , D e l h i 1973.

BG

Bhagavadgitā.

Bh. P.

Bhāgavata Purāna, Ahmedabad.

Br.

Brāhmana (preceded Satapatha).

Bhagavat, by

Vidyapeeth,

name

such as

Bs. P.

Bhavisya Purāna, Vishnu Shastri Bapat, W a i .

Bv. P.

Brahma Vaivarta Purāna, G M , 1955-57.

CC

Caturvarga Cintāmani by H e m ā d r i .

CVS

Carana Vyūha Sūtra by Ś a u n a k a ; C o m . by

DB

Devi Bhāgavata, G M , 1960-61.

Mahidāsa.


( De or G D A M I

«v

)

The Geographical Dictionary of Ancient and Mediaeval India, N. L. D e , Orienta Reprint, Delhi, 1971.

D h . S.

Dharma Sūtra

(preceded by

the a u t h o r ' s

ERE

Encyclopaedia of Religion and Ethics—Hastings.

GP

Garuda

n a m e such as G a u t a m a ) . Purāna,

Ed. R. S. Bhattacharya,

C h o w k h a m b a , Varanasi, 1964. GS

Grhya Sūtra (Preceded by the n a m e of the a u t h o r such as Āpastamba)

HD

History of Dharma

Śāstra

by P. V. K a n e ,

G.O.S. IA

The Indian Antiquary.

IHO_

The Indian Historical Quarterly.

KA

Kaufiliya

KP

MKP MN

Kūrma Purāna, Venkateshwara Press Edt. Bombay, also Kashiraj Trust E d t . , V a r a n a s i 1971. Liñga Purāna, G M , 1960; also M L B D , Delhi, 1981. Manu Smrti. Mahābhārata, Gītā Press, G o r a k h p u r , VS 2014. Mārkandeya Purāna. Mahābhārata Nāmānukramani, G ī t ā Press,

M t . P.

Matsya Purāna, G M , 1954.

MW

Monier Williams Sk. English Dictionary M L B D , Delhi, 1976.

NP

N&radiya or Nārada Press, Bombay.

PCK

Bhāratavarsiya Prācina Caritra koia, Siddheshwar

LP Manu Mbh.

Arthaś&stra.

G o r a k h p u r , VS 2016.

Purāna; Venkateshwar

Shastri, Poona, 1968. P d . P. PE

Padtna Purāna, G M . , 1957-59. Puranic Encyclopaedia by V. Marti, English, M L B D , Delhi, 1975.


(

xv

)

PJ.

Purāna ( J o u r n a l of t h e K a s h i r ā j T r u s t ) , Varanasi.

PR or P R H R C

Puranic Records on Hindu Rites and R. G. H a z r a , C a l c u t t a , 1948.

RV

Rg Veda, Svadhyaya M a n d a l , A u n d h

Śat. Br

Śatapatha Brāhmana.

Customs

SC or S M C

Smrti Candrikā—Dcv&nna. B h a t t a .

SEP

Studies in Epics and Purānas by A. D. Pusalkar B h a r a t i y a V i d y a B h a v a n ( B V B ) , Bombay.


INTRODUCTION 1.

The Title Brahmānda

T h i s P u ŕ ā n a is called ' B r a h m ā n d a ' , as god B r a h m a n a r r a t ­ ed it w i t h special emphasis on the description of the B r a h m ā n d a (the Cosmic Egg) a n d deals with the future Kalpa-periods. 1 K P . states t h a t this P u r ā n a , sanctified by the description of the B r a h m a n was recounted by B r a h m a to Sages engaged in a S a t t r a in Naimisa forest. 2 T h e NP ( N ā r a d a P u r ā n a ) calls it ' a n ancient treatise dealing with the events of the A d i - K a l p a . s T h e B d . P . 4 ( B r a h m ā n d a P u r ā n a ) repeatedly declares its m a i n object to give 'the explanation of the real state of affairs or the reality a b o u t the Universe or the world (loka-tattva). T h e t e r m B r a h m ā n d a connotes a mix of ancient I n d i a n concepts a b o u t cosmography, cosmology a n d cosmogony. T r a d i t i o n a l l y 5 the P u r ā n a is divided into four p a r t s (Pādas) of u n e q u a l length as follows : 1) Prakriyā P ā d a (No. of Chs. 5) 2) A n u s a ñ g a P ā d a (No. of Chs. 33) 3) ' U p o d g h ā t a P ā d a (No. of Chs. 74) 4) U p a s a i h h ā r a P ā d a (No. of Chs. 4) 1.

B r a h m a brahtnānda-māhātmyam adhikrtyā'bravit p u n a h / t a c c a dvādaśa-sāhaśrarh B r a h m ā n d a m dviśatādhikam // B h a v i s y ā n ā m ca kalpānārii śrūyate yatra vistarah /

2

t a d Brahmānda-purānam ca Brahmanā samudāhrtam // Mt.P. 53-54-55. KP. I I . 4 3 . 4 . atra pūrvarh sa B h a g a v ā n rsīnām sattram āsatām / sa vai p r o v ā c a B r a h m ā n d a m P u r ā n a m Brahma-bhāvitam // AP. 272.22 repeats Mt. P. 53.54a, b.c.

3.

N P . 109.1

4.

loka-tattvārtham a k h i l a m V e d a - s a m m a t a m / —Bd.P.l.l.l.1-8. loka-tattva-vidhānārtham—ibid. 12

5.

Bd.P. 1.1.1.39 : E v a m pādāstu catvārah NP. 109.29 calles Bd. P. ' c a t u s p ā d a '


xviii

Brahman da Purāna

This seems to be the original division as followed in the Pūrva Sarhhitā(Fa. P. 11.61.58-59), b u t later on, P ā d a s 1 a n d 2 -were included u n d e r Pūrva bhāga, P ā d a 3 u n d e r the middle p a r t (MadhyaBhāga) a n d P ā d a 4 as Uttara-bhāga (the latter p a r t ) . T h e original B d . P . ended with the 4th C h . of the Upasamhāra Pāda as its concluding verses ( I I I IV.4.41-73) state t h a t all the sages of N a i m i s ā r a n y a , the performers of the sacrificial session, went to heaven. It further gives the genealogy of the teachers of Bd. P. who h a n d e d down the T e x t (and i t — t h e Genealogy—is m u c h m o r e comprehensive t h a n t h a t in the begin­ n i n g — I . i . 1.8-12). Moreover, we find t h a t the Lalitā M ā h ā t m y a starts with a fresh M a ń g a l ā c a r a n a a n d has a new p a i r of interlocutors. Its contents—manifestation of goddess Lalitā to kill Bhandāsura, h e r m a r r i a g e with K ā m e ś v a r a , (Śiva) a n d glorification of M a h ā p a d m ā etc.—show t h a t it is an- i n d e p e n d e n t work a n d not an integral p a r t of the Bd. P. Lalitā M ā h ā t m y a of 40 chapters is thus a later accretion or an Appendix, as it is not m e n t i o n e d in the N P . C h . 109 n o r in the J a v a n e s e version of the Bd. P. 2.

Extent :

As to the extent of the Purāna,majority of the P u r ā n a s 1 regard "Bd. P. as consisting of 12000 verses" (dvādaśa-sāhasrath Brahmāndam). T h o u g h Ml. P. 53.54 gives 12,200 as the n u m b e r of verses in Bd.P., the Venkateshwar Press edition of this P u r ā n a , however, contains 14286 verses. Obviously Venk. Press edition is inflated with an interpolation of 2286 verses. T h e absence of Lalitā m ā h ā t m y a in the J V P . a n d t h a t of the so-called 'Prophetic history of future dynasties' in the Indonesian edition of the Bd.P. show t h a t the original Bd. P. was smaller. 3.

Position

All P u r ā n a s , however, agree a b o u t the. 18th position of Bd. P. in the list of P u r ā n a s (vide KP.III.6.21-24, Bh. P. X I I . 13. 4-8, LP, I.39.6I-63, Mt. P. 53.12ff, SK. P . V I I . 2 . 5 - 7 ) . 1.

e.g. Bh.P. X I I . 13.8., AP. 272.23-


Introduction 4.

xix

Transmission

T h e Bd.P. records the following two lines of transmission Of this P u r ā n a : I. God B r a h m ā - * S a g e Vasistha->Parāśara-»-Jātukarnya D v a i p ā y a n a (Vyāsa) — S ū t a Ro (Lo) m a h a r s a n a (Bd.P. 1.1.1 8-17). JVP. (109.33-36) substitutes Śakti for P a r ā ś a r a a n d adds V ā y u (the W i n d - g o d ) between J ā t u k a r n y a a n d Vyāsa. I I . This is much longer t h a n the I above, a n d is given in the concluding portion of the P u r ā n a (Bd.P. Hl.iv.4.58-66). It is as follows : God B r a h m ā - v M ā t a r i ś v a n (The W i n d - g o d ) - * Uśanas-*Brhaspati-VThe Sun-god-*The G o d of death-»-Indra->Vasistha -+Sārasvata->Tridhāman -^-ŚaradvataTrivista-»-antarīksa-> Trayyāruni->-Dhanañjaya -> K r t a ñ j a y a Bharadvāja --> G a u tama->Niryyantara-»-Vājaśravas->-Somaśusma Trnabindu-*Daksa->Śakti->Parāśara (while in womb)->Jātukamya->.Dvaip ā y a n a (Vyāsa)->-Sūta R o ( L o ) m a h a r s a n a . O n e wonders why Vasistha did not transmit this P u r ā n a directly to his son Śakti a n d Why fifteen generations of teachers or c o n t e m p o r a r y teachers h a d to intervene between the father (Vasisfha) a n d the son ( Ś a k t i ) . T h e VS.P. 103.58-66 gives this very list of teachers who transmitted the text of t h a t P u r ā n a . It must however be conceded t h a t all the teachers in the list are a c c o m m o d a t e d in the longer II list. 5.

The Place of Composition

It is difficult to pin-point the place of the composition of Bd.P. In Bd.P. I.ii. 16.43-44 the a u t h o r states : " T h e region towards the n o r t h e r n extremity of the Sahya m o u n t a i n where the Godāvarī flows is the]most fascinating realm in the whole of the e a r t h . A city n a m e d G o v a r d h a n a was b u i l t there by R ā m a . Heavenly trees a n d divine medicinal herbs were planted there by sage Bharadvāja to please R ā m a . H e n c e t h e region of t h a t excellent city is c h a r m i n g " . '• In my note on G o v a r d h a n a , * I have n o t e d t h a t G o v a r d h a n a •Note 1 on p. 157.


Brahmānda Purāna

XX

was an i m p o r t a n t centre of learning a n d was m e n t i o n e d several times in the famous inscription of U s a v a d ā t a (100 B.C.)—Epi. Ind. V I I I , p. 78. Brahmins hailing from t h a t area are known as G o v a r d h a n a B r ā h m a n a s . Some of the details of the Ś r ā d d h a ritual (Śrāddha Kalpa) in Bd.P. ( H . i i i . Chs. 10 to 20) are c o m m o n to those of the M ā d h y a n d i n Brahmins ( M ā d h y a n d i n Brahmins seem to have colonised the Godāvarī valley right from its source at Tryambakeshwar). K a n e regards this area as the place of composition ofBd. P. (HD.V.ii.895 a n d I V . 710 Footnote 1618), I still think t h a t s o m e m o r e clinching evidence is necessary to support this claim, for in C h . 16 u n d e r reference a n d elsewhere a n u m b e r of places in I n d i a are mentioned in glowing terms. I I . Text-Criticism

: Materials

II. i. Chapter Concordance of the Brahmānda and Vāyupurāna Brahmānda

Vāyu .

Prahriyāpāda 1.1 (174) 2 (48) 3 (38) 4 (34) 5 (141)

1 (205) 2 (45) 4 (92) 5 (54) 6 (79)

Anusańgapāda 6 (77)

7 (80)

Brahmānda 7 (195) 8 (66) 9 (92) 10 (88) 11 (45a) 12 (53) 13.1-86 (86) 13.87-151 (65) 14 (75)

Vāyu 8 (209) 9.1-84 (64) 10.1-67 (67) 27 (60) 28 (39) 29 (49) 30.1-78 (78) 31 (61) 33 (65):


Introduction

XXI

Brahmānda 15.1-51a (50) I5.51a-61b

Vāyu 34.1-57 (57) 43.1-9 (9) 45.1-20a (20) 45.67-13? (71) 46 (37) 47' (80) 49 (186)

Bd.P. 32 (122) 34 (68) 35.1.4a

Vā.P. 59.1-106a (106) 60.1-62 (62) 60.63-66a

l5.61b-80 (20) 16 (69) 17 (37) 18 (84) 19 (197) 20 (58) 21 (176) 22 (84) 23 (108) 24 (152) 25 (117) 26 (65)

50.1-57a (57) 50.57b-224 (167) 51 (76) 52 (99) 53 (123) 54 (117) 55 (68)

II.l (125) 2 (32) 3 (131) 4 (37) 5 (106)

65.1a-120 (120) 65.120b-159 (39) 66

28 (100)

56 (94)

6 (39)

68 (39)

29 ' (92)

57.1-85 (85)

7. (479)

69 (355)

30 (48)

57.86-125 (40)

8. (162)

70 (91)

31 (127)

58 (126)

9 (76)

71 (79)

(*)

S5.4b-215 (211) 36 (227) 37 (60) 38 (33;

61 (186) 62 (193) 63 (56) 64 (31)

Upodghātapāda

(152) 67.1-47 (47) 67.68-135 (88)


xxii

Brahmānda Purāna

Bd.P.

Vā.p.

Bd.P.

V&.P.

10.1 -52a (52)

72 (50)

19 (74)

83.1-107 (107)

10.52b-120 (68)

73 (73)

20 (23)

83.108-129 (22)

ll.l-35a (35)

74 (32)

59 (86)

84 (86)

11.35b-116 (81)

75 (77)

60 (28)

85 (28)

12 (46)

76 (43)

61 (53)

86 (69)

13 (143)

77 (135)

14 (117)

78 (28)

15 (68)

79 (95)

III.l (243)

100 (246)

16 (59)

80 (62)

2 (316)

101 (355)

17 (22)

81 (26)

3 (113)

102 (135)

18 (15)

82 (15)

4 (73)

103 (73)

Upasamhirapida

It is d u e to this close correspondence between t h e texts of Bd. P. a n d Vā P. t h a t I referred to the r e a d i n g in the corres­ p o n d i n g verse in t h e V ā . P . in case the r e a d i n g in B d . P . is corrupt, incorrect or doubtful. * II. ii.

The Brahmānda and the Narada Purānas

T h e N P . , in C h . 109, briefly gives a list of topics in the Bd. P. T h e y are n o t 'a T a b l e of c o n t e n t s ' in the m o d e r n sense of t h e t e r m b u t are found described at various places in t h e Bd.P.


xxiii

Introduction

Below is a comparative table of the topics in the Bd. P. as recorded in the N P . Bd.P. Pūrva bhāga Prakriyā pāda

NP.Ch. 109 V.4

Stipulation of duties

1.1.1.

Story of the Naimisa forest

1.1.2.

T h e origin of H i r a n y a g a r b h a

1.1.3.

T h e conception of different worlds.

1.1.4 Bd.P. Pūrva-Bhāga-Anusańga Pāda

N.P. Ch. 109 V.5

V.6

V.7

V.8

N a r r a t i o n of K a l p a s a n d M a n v a n t a r a s ,

I.ii.6

K r o w l e d g e a b o u t worlds

I.ii.7.

N a r r a t i o n of m e n t a l creation

I.ii.8.

R u d r a ' s offspring

I.ii.9.

Prowess of M a h ā d e v a

I.ii.10.

Creation by Sages

I.ii.ll.

Agnivarhśa

I.ii.12

T h e wheel of T i m e

I.ii.13.

Dynasty of Priyavrata

I.ii.14

T h e extent of the e a r t h

I.ii.15

Description of Bhārata

I.ii.16

Review of other sub-continents

I.ii.17

Description of J a m b ū d v ī p a a n d other continents

V.9

I.ii. 18 & 19.

T h e description of the nether-worlds

I.ii.20

E n u m e r a t i o n of the u p p e r worlds

I.ii.21.20

T h e movements of planets

I.ii.23.

P l a n e t a r y system

I.ii.21,22

ff.


xxiv

Brahmānda Purāna NP

Bd.P.

E n u m e r a t i o n of Divine plants V.10

E x p l a n a t i o n of the n a m e N i l a k a n t h a Prowess of M a h ā d e v a

V.ll

I.ii.24 I.ii.25 I.ii.26, 27

Description of the New M o o n day

I.ii.28

Review of the Principles of Yuga

I.ii.29.

T h e Institution of Yajñas

I.ii.30.

T h e last two Yugas described

I.ii.31

Characteristics of h u m a n beings in different Yugas I.ii.32. Spiritual lineage of Sages I.ii.32 V.12

T h e classification of the Vedas

I.ii.34.

S v ā y a m b h u v a M a n u a n d his M a n ­ vantara I.ii.35. E n u m e r a t i o n of remaining M a n u

V.13

epochs

I.ii.36.

Milking of the E a r t h

I.ii.36.

T h e Cāksusa M a n v a n t a r a

I.ii.37.

JVP. T h e creation of Seven Sages V.14

V.15

Bd.P. HI Upodghāta Pāda H.iii.l.

T h e family of Prajāpati a n d the b i r t h of Devas

II.iii.2, 3

Birth of M a r u t s

II.iii.5

T h e race of K a ś y a p a

II.iii.7

T h e families of Sages

II.iii.8

Pitf-Kalpa

II.iii.9

Śrāddha-Kalpa

H . i i i . Chs.10-20.


Introduction

XXV

NP. V.16

Bd.P.

T h e origin of Vaivasvata M a n u a n d his creation

II.iii.59

T h e family of M a n u ' s sons

II.iii.60

T h e review of G a n d h a r v a s (Science of M u s i c ) V.17

V.18

II.iii.61.

T h e race of Iksvāku

II.iii.63.

T h e race of Atri

II.iii.8

T h e r a c e of Amāvasu

II.iii.66

T h e story of Raji

II.iii.66

T h e story of Yayāti

II.iii.68

T h e race of Yadu T h e story of K ā r t t a v l r y a

II.iii.69

T h e story o f J a m a d a g n i a n d P a r a śurāma II.iii.21-46. V.19

T h e r a c e o f Vrsni

II.iii.71.

T h e b i r t h of Sagara II.iii.47.75-100. T h e story of Bhārgava a n d the killing of K ā r t t a v ī r y a V.2C

II.iii.37-46.

T h e story of S a g a r a

II.iii.45-56

T h e story of Bhārgava again

II.iii.57-58.

Battle between Devas a n d Asuras

II.iii.72.67-195 a n d 73.1-68.

Birth of K r s n a V.21

II.iii.71.195-241.

I n d r a ' s ( P r o b - Ś i v a ' s ) p r a y e r by Śukra II.iii.72.163ff Greatness of Visnu

V.22

II.iii.73.

T h e race of Bali

II.iii.74.26

T h e future kings of Kali Age

II.iii.74

ff.

Bd. P. UttaraBhāga-Upasamhāra V.23 V.24

Pāda

Description of Vaivasvata M a n v a n t a r a I I I . i v . 5 ff. Stories of future M a n u s

III.iv.1.7

ff.


XXVI

Brahniānda Purāna NP

V.25

V.26

Bd.P.

K a l p a a n d Pralaya

I U . i v . l & 3.

Measures of T i m e

III.iv.2.90

14 Worlds a n d their character

III.iv.2.-8-89.

ff.

Description of Hells

III.iv.2.145-195.

Prakritic P r a l a y a

IV.3.

V.27

Description of Siva's city Threefold goals

IV.iv.2.

V.28

Description of B r a h m a n

IV.iv.iv.4.

It will be seen from the above c o m p a r a t i v e T a b l e t h a t Lalitā-Māhātmya does n o t form a p a r t of Bd.P. according to Nārada. II. (Hi) The Old-Javanese Brahmān4a Purāna* T h e first scholar to invite a t t e n t i o n to t h e old-Javanese ( O J . ) Bd. P. was R. Friederich who, in A . D . 1847, n o t e d it in. his 'Provisional R e p o r t of t h e Isle of Bali'. But t h a t P u r ā n a in. Kavi language c a m e to be edited a n d translated in D u t c h by the great scholar Prof. D r . J. G o n d a of U t r e c h t in 1932-33. (Het. oud-javaansche B r a h m ā n d a P u r ā n a Edited a n d a n n o t a t e d , B a n d u n g 1932 a n d I I translated, B a n d u n g 1933). Like other O J . texts (e.g. m a n y Parvans of the M b h . ) the Bd. P. in K a v i L a n g u a g e is an abridged prose translation of t h e S K . Bd. P. or was a translation of an abridged form of t h e original S K . written in the Śloka style. It p r u n e s superfluous adjec­ tives a n d other trammels a n d succinctly presents the story. It follows S K . passages which were borrowed a n d translated very closely. Although it is m u c h shorter, it does not generally speak­ ing, omit, from the chapters w h a t is essential. W h a t is especially

•Based on Prof. D r . J.

G o n d a ' s paper :

alt-jāvānische Brahmānda Purāna in Acta

Oritntalia

to Dr. G o n d a for inviting my attention to 1.12.82).

Einige Mitteibingen uber dasXI.

this

218-259.

article

I am grateful

( H i s letter

dated.


Introduction

xxvii

interesting is t h a t m a n y Ślokas, double or single pādas a r e lite­ rally borrowed a n d interspersed at irregular intervals. T h e s e S K . quotations constitute fragments of an i n d e p e n d e n t t r a d i t i o n of these texts. T h e Javanese Bd. P. is closely r e l a t e d to the B r a h m ā n d a - V ā y u recension though different in m a n y respects from it a n d is a valuable source of knowledge for studying t h e textual tradition of t h e P u r ā n a s . D r . G o n d a examines t h e struc­ t u r e of the J a v a n e s e Bd. P. a n d draws a t t e n t i o n to the following p a r t i c u l a r s w h i c h shed light on its relation with S K . Bd. P. a n d the inter-relation between the S K . P u r ā n a s themselves: 1. T h e introduction mainly agrees with S K . V ā . P . , w i t h the sacrifice of K i n g Adhisīma-Krsna. A m o n g B r ā h m a n a s a n d Sages w h o a t t e n d e d was Bhagavān R o m a h a r s a n a . H e , a t t h e i r request, proceeds to n a r r a t e the Manuvamśakrama i n c l u d i n g P u r a n i c stories. O J . ( O l d - J a v a n e s e ) Bd. P . p . 4 8 . 5 — p , 53.30 correspond t o V ā . P . 1.8-28. V ā . P. 1.1-9 a r e completely missing. 2. R o m a h a r s a n a commences his n a r r a t i o n by describing the creation of t h e universe B d . P . l , 3, 8. After describing P r a d h ā n a , the O J . text informs about the creator : R u d r a , K ā l a a d d i n g some notices of (originally Sāńkhya b u t Puranised c o n ­ cepts like) m a h ā n , a h a m k ā r a , ekādaśendriya, t a n m ā t r a s a n d the origin of t h e cosmic egg.. Then, the creation of nine devar^is,. t h e b i r t h of R u d r a (cf. Bd.P. G h . l O ) , t h e origin of S a ń k a l p a a n d D h a r m a (Gf. V ā . P. 9.7 ff), the creation of gods, Asuras, pitrs. T h e first q u o t a t i o n in O J . Bd. p. corresponds to Bd. P. 1.3.8 a n d the last to 1.8.54-55. 3. After some details a b o u t t h e chronology of c r e a t i o n a n d origin of four V a r n a s , t h e O J . text treats the b i r t h of S v ā y a m bhuva M a n u and Śatarūpā, their marriage and birth of R a t i etc. T h e n a r r a t i v e runs parallel to Bd. P. 1.9.32 ff (Vā. P. 10.8ff) b u t t h e O J . version is shorter a n d presents the topics in different order. While dealing with D a k s a ' s wife Prasūti a n d her twentyfour children ( O J . Bd.P. p. 58.1.21 ff) t h e text agrees with K P . 8.15 r a t h e r than with the m o r e detailed Bd.P. 1.9.47-49 ( V ā . P . 10.23-24) showing t h a t the Javanese a u t h o r h a d a shorter S K . redaction of the Bd. P. T h e text Bd. P. ch. 11 (Vā. P. c h . 28) a n d O J . Bd. P. r u n parallel b u t O J . version drops Agnivamśa-varnana. The


xxviii

Brahmānia Pur an a

short note on Pitrs (Bd. P. 1.13.1 ff. V ā . P. 30.1 ff) is also missing. 4. O J . Bd. P. is silent on Deva-vamśa Varnana (Bd. P. 1.13.87-151, V ā . P. 3 1 ) . 5. Ksattriya-Sarga i.e. the genealogy of M a n u Svāyamb h u v a in O J . Bd. P. p. 68.1.2 ff corresponds to Bd. P. 1.14 a n d V ā . P. 33. In SK. Bd. P. a n d V ā . P. the description of J a m b ū d v i p a (Bd. P. 1.15, V ā . P. 34. 1-57, 53.1-9, 45.1.20a) follows rationally a n d chronologically after n a r r a t i n g the a p p o i n t m e n t of M a n u ' s seven grandsons to seven dvipas, b u t C h s . Bd. P. 15-31, V ā . P. 34-58 are not found in O J . Bd. P. It gives the geography of J a m b ū d v ī p a at a later place. 6. T h e O J . Bd.P. p.72.1,ff. containing yuga-prajS-laksanam a n d Rsi-pravaravarnanam corresponds to Bd. P. 1.32.1 ff). T h e duration of life of gods, demons, m e n , d h a r m a , āśramas etc. a r e discussed to some length. 7. Bd. P. C h . 33 containing sages a n d sacred formula (rs-nām n ā m ā n i , m a n t r a - l a k s a n a m , m a n t r ā n ā m n&nāvidhatvam e t c . ) is missing in O J . Bd. P., t h o u g h the contents are to follow later on (p. 14 ff.). T h o u g h the subject m a t t e r of Bd. P. 34 is generally speaking adequately represented in the O J . text, there is m u c h diversity in details (so in V ā . P . as w e l l ) . 8. T h e episode of the pupils of D e v a m i t r a Śākalya a n d Śākapūni are common to O J . a n d SK. Bd.P. (Ch. 35 of Bd. P . ) ; so are the next subjects such as division of Yajurveda, Vaiśamp ā y a n a ' s brahma-hatyā, behaviour of Yājñavalkya who, after 'vomitting' old Yajurveda, acquires a new (white) Yajurveda a n d names of 86 pupils of V a i ś a m p ā y a n a etc. T h e O J . text spells m a n y names differently. T h e r e is a curious statement in O J . Bd. P. p. 90.1 where Yājñavalkya is shown to refuse V a i ś a m p ā y a n a ' s request to observe p e n a n c e to atone for his B r a h m a h a t y ā . But b o t h SK. Bd.P. 1.35.20 a n d V ā . P. 61.17 state the willing­ ness of Yājñavalkya to obey: aham ekal carisyāmi tisthantu munayas tvime 9. T h e next section on the rsis of four Vedas, the mantras, their use differs considerably in details from SK. Bd. P. C h . 33 b u t V ā . P. too differs a n d so the origin of deviation is I n d i a n a n d not Indonesian.


Introduction

xxix

10. W h e n O J . text (p. 112.30) reaches S K . Bd. P. 1.35.201 a n d Vā. P. 61.172, it ( O J . B d . p . p. 112.30) observes : " L i k e t h a t the n a r r a t i v e goes in the Prakriyāpāda of B r a h m ā n d a samhitā as told by t h e revered V y ā s a " ) . But the Prakriyā-pāda in SK. P u r ā n a s ends m u c h earlier viz. at t h e end of C h . 5 in Bd. P. a n d 6 in V ā . P. It is puzzling how the term Prakriyāpāda is used in t h e O J . T e x t w h i c h shows no knowledge of the four­ fold division (viz. Prakriyā, Anusañga, Upodghāta a n d Upasarhhāra> of t h e mūla-purāna. 11. T h e long section dealing with other M a n u s a n d t h e descendants of Svāyambhuva M a n u esp. t h e V e n a - P r t h u episode r u n s parallel in general with Bd. P.,Vā.P. Kirfel points out t h e difference between redaction of the V e n a - P r t h u episode in Bd. P., V ā . P. a n d in other P u r ā n a s like B r a h m a , H a r i v a m ś a a n d concludes t h a t t h e O J . text betrays t h e activity of the same r e d a c t o r w h o a r r a n g e d the I n d i a n Bd. P.-Vā. P. texts. H e r e ­ after O J . text treats the description of J a m b ū d v ī p a , Bhuvanavinyāsa a n d a p a r t of Jyotihpracāra which constitute Bd. P. C h . 1.15 a n d V ā . P. C h . 34. T h e harmonization of this r e m a r k a b l e transposition of the topics is a problem. 12. Bd. P. 1.15-24, V ā . P. 34-54 a n d M t . P . 112-128 constitute a large coherent treatise of geography a n d cosmogra­ p h y . O J . text (p. 128.22 ff) refers to B h a t t ā r a Bāyu " T h e L o r d V ā y u " as an a u t h o r i t y (cf. t h e beginning of B d . P . 1.15, V ā . 34) a n d deals w i t h J a m b ū d v ī p a , its m o u n t a i n s (esp. M e r u ) t h e S a p t a v a r s a of J a m b ū d v ī p a a n d closes w i t h K u r u v a r s a . 13. Next O J . text (p. 136, 30-143, 4) gives the descrip­ tion of B h ā r a t a v a r s a . T h e order of Stanzas in Bd. P . , V ā . P. is similar to O J . text b u t curiously enough the line Bd. P. 1.16.8 a n d V ā . P. 45, 78 regarding the m u t u a l u n a p p r o a c h a b i l i t y of t h e nine regions of B h ā r a t a - V a r s a is u n t r a c e d in O J . text a n d S K . M t . P. 14. T h e next section deals with other varsas of J a m b ū ­ dvīpa ( K i m p u r u s a e t c . ) , the p e n a n c e of B h a g ī r a t h a , the descent of G a ń g ā , lakes, rivers a n d V a d a v ā m u k h a or Aurvāgni. T h e O J . shows the influence o f M t . P . a n d the q u o t a t i o n i n O J . text p. 152.12 ( y a s y ā m j a m b ū n a d a l i s m r t a h ) has m o r e in c o m m o n w i t h M t . P. 120.67 r a t h e r t h a n B d . P . 1.18.69a a n d V ā . P. 47.66b.


BrahmSnda Purāna

XXX

15. T h e next section deals with other dvipas, Saka, K u ś a e t c . On this cosmographic topic SK. P u r ā n a s resolve into three groups (1) Bd. P., V ā . P. etc. (2) M t . P., V a r ā h a (3) P d . P. a n d M b h . T h e J a v a n e s e version joins the Matsya recension of this cosmography. 16. T h e last section deals with astronomy. Bd. P. 20, V ā . P. 50.1-57 give the description of the nether-worlds. But O J . deletes this a n d goes with M t . P. As to the description of stars, planets, division of stratosphere, the Solar car (Bd.P. 1.22), the O J . text follows m o r e closely M t . P . I n M t . P., Bd. P , V ā . P . t h e n a r r a t i o n (of the stars etc.) continues b u t the O J . text a b r u p t l y comes to a close where the above I n d i a n parallel texts do not even finish the c h a p t e r . F r o m this Prof. D r . G o n d a concludes t h a t the O J . text is incomplete. T h e Vamśānucarita traditionally dealt with in the P u r ā n a is completely absent as it was of little i m p o r t a n c e to J a v a n e s e readers* A p a r t of this O J . text containing the V e n a - P r t h u episode, the geography a n d p a r t of cosmography has come down to us in a metrical a d a p t a t i o n in a MS called Prthuvijaya, the n a m e of the poet being Asta-guna. III.

The Brahmānda as a Mahā-Purāna

It m a y be due to the interpolatory n a t u r e of C h . 1 of our P u r ā n a , t h a t the ancient division of this P u r ā n a in four partsPādas) follows the Pañca-laksana*\\st characterising Mahāp u r ā n a s , as the former is given in W. 38b-39 a n d the latter in W . 37b-38b o f the opening c h a p t e r . B e i t a s i t may, the l a t t e r — the Pañca-laksana definition of a P u r ā n a is very p o p u l a r as it is repeated in a n u m b e r of P u r ā n a s e.g. A P . 1.14, K P . 1.1.12, M K . P.134.13-14, V a r ā h a P. 2.4, V ā . P. 4.10-11. It is interesting to note how this ancient P u r ā n a of " f o u r feet" (Catuspāda) a d a p t s itself to the Pañca-laksana formula * I t is equally possible that the MS of S K . B d . P ' taken to J a v a m i g h t have been at a period before the so-called 'future kings'. H e n c e their n o n mention.


xxxi

Introduction

a d o p t e d by it. T h e five characteristics (laksanas) of a P u r ā n a given by it, a r e : (1) Sarga (creation of the U n i v e r s e ) , (2) Pratisarga (Dissolution a n d re-creation of the w o r l d ) , (3) Manvantaras (Periods of T i m e presided over by M a n u s ) , (4) Vamśa (Genealogies of gods, the P a t r i a r c h s , T h e Sun a n d T h e M o o n ) a n d (5) Vamśānucarita (accounts of dynasties of different ruling families). (1)

Sarga—Creation of the Universe

T h e P u r ā n a gives the following theories of the creation of t h e Universe : (1)

Creation from the Brahman

T h e eternal B r a h m a n , the source of t h e Universe is beginningless a n d endless. It is the source of the beginning a n d the place of u l t i m a t e merging a n d rest (of the U n i v e r s e ) . It is incomprehensible a n d beyond Sat a n d Asat. It pervaded the entire universe which was dark (unmanifested), as the gunas were in a state of equilibrium. At the time of creation, Ksetrajña presided over Pradhāna a n d agitated the gunas which thereby b e c a m e uneven (due to loss of their e q u i l i b r i u m ) a n d the great principle Mahat was evolved. As the Sattva-guna p r e d o m i n a t e d in t h e Mahat, the lińga Sarira psychic-subtle-body) was evolved a n d was presided over by the Ksetrajña. Sañkalpa (thoughtp o w e r ) a n d Adhyavasāya ( d e t e r m i n a t i o n ) are r e m e m b e r e d to be his functions. W i t h a desire to create, he created this great creation (1.1.3.10-24). (//)

The Purānic Theory*

T h e Ksetrajña called B r a h m a who awoke in the egg of Prakrti (Cosmic Egg) is the first embodied being a n d he is called Purusa (One lying in the abode of t h e cosmic e g g l . T h i s god B r a h m a , the first creator of Bhūtas (elements or beings) existed first. T h i s four-faced H i r a n y a g a r b h a a p p e a r e d at first in this (Cosmic E g g ) . Both at the time of creation a n d re-crea­ tion (after d e s t r u c t i o n ) , he is the Ksetrajña called B r a h m a . *A few verses in the text of Bd. P. are corrupt and unintelligible. So this theory is g i v e n on the basis of the corresponding verses of t h e V ā . P. 4. 76-79 as both these PurāBM h o v e identical verse


xxxii

Brahmānda Purāna

In the Vedic tradition, H i r a n y a is the Light-Life principle. He in whom this principle vibrates is Hiranyagarbha*. O u r P u r ā n a states t h a t the Cosmic Egg contains seven worlds, the e a r t h along w i t h Seven continents, oceans—nay everything including the Sun, the M o o n , Stars, Planets a n d the m o u n t a i n Lokāloka (1.1.3.26-31). T h e egg is enveloped from outside with seven sheaths of the fowŕ" elements (water, fire, wind a n d t h V ' e t h e r ) , of the Bh&lādi, Al/that and PradKańa e a c h sKeatīTten times bigger t h a n the former. Sāńkhya influence is obvious here. This is the Prākrtacreation, a vivartaoithe B r a h m a n presid­ ed over by Ksetrajña ( B r a h m a ) . It takes place without preplanning (abuddhipurva) like the flash of a lightening ( I . 1.3.24-37). (///)

Prākrta

Sarga

O u r P u r ā n a presents the Sāńkhya T h e o r y of Creation as follows : Before the creation of the Universe, the Unmanifest was stationed in itself a n d the p r o d u c t (the Universe) was withdrawn. T h e Pradhana a n d Purusa remained w i t h their characteristics T a m a s a n d Sattva respectively. Laya means equilibrium of Gunas a n d Creation means dis-equilibrium of these Gunas. T h r e e divinities viz. B r a h m a , Visnu a n d R u d r a were b o r n out of the qualities Rajas, Sattva a n d T a m a s respectively. But it is Visnu who, as the enlightener a n d revealer of the Rajas, becomes B r a h m a a n d t h a t of the T a m a s adopts the form of K ā l a ( R u d r a ) a n d of these Sattva assumes the form of Visnu. T h u s , the trinity of gods, though separate with separate functions, are b u t one entity. " T h e self-born deity has three states. He has four faces as B r a h m a a n d possessing Rajas exclusively, creates the worlds; as K ā l a , he has the gunas—Rajas and T a m a s , a n d he annihilates. As P u r u s a with a thousand heads, he is exclusively Sāttvika. T h i s is the position of G u n a s in the case of the Self-born d e i t y " (I.i.4.17-19) T h a t Deity is Om. Omniscient, Ādya, (first), Aja ( U n b o r n ) Hiranyagarbha, K ā l a a n d eternal, (ibid.26-34).

" T h e Purānas amplify V e d i c tradition. For the concept 'Hiranyagarbha' v i d e V. S. Agrawala—Hirartyagarbha (Purāna II i.ii.285-306).


Introduction (IV)

XXXLll

The Nine Creations of Brahma

At the beginning, there was one vast ocean (Ekārnava, also called M a h ā r n a v a , Stabdha-Salila or Tugānta-Toya ' W a t e r at the end of Yugas' in other P u r ā n a s ) . T h i s primeval watery flood expresses the infinite unmanifest cause of the Universe (called the Kārana Brahman by N i l a k a n t h a on HV.P.3.9.1-4). B r a h m a n a m e d N ā r ā y a n a w i t h a thousand heads slept there. He r e m a i n e d m e d i t a t i n g for a thousand Yugas. He moved alone in waters a n d knew t h a t the Universe h a d sunk into t h a t vast expanse of w a t e r a n d t h o u g h t of the other eight-fold cosmic body (evolved b y ) O r h k ā r a in the beginning of K a l p a s as before (I.i.5.1-9). He assumed the form of a boar a n d lifted up the e a r t h * a n d re-arranged the m o u n t a i n s , oceans etc. on the e a r t h as before 'again a n d again at the beginning of every K a l p a ' (ibid 9-27). W i t h a desire to create, he m e d i t a t e d a n d as he was m e d i t a t i n g Avidyā w i t h its five 'knots' (parvans) viz. T a m a s ( i g n o r a n c e ) , M o h a (Delusion) M a h ā m o h a (great Delusion a n d ) others (These are the Kleśas in the Togaśāstra) unfolded itself a n d immobile (mukhya or sthāvara) creation took place. B r a h m a was n o t satisfied with this m e d i t a t e d (Vaikrta) creation a n d created the a n i m a l world called Tiryak-srotas as it functioned bliquely. T h i s second creation was T ā m a s i k a a n d B r a h m a being dissatisfied w i t h it created the T h i r d d i v i n e — S ā t t v i k a — of gods (called Urddhvasrotas). These are the three ' m e d i t a t e d ' a n d (ibid. 28-46). Later, god B r a h m a desired set of beings a n d Lo ! a ' d o w n r c u r r e n t e d ' beings full of Rajas a n d T a m a s yet capable goals was created (ibid 47-50).

P r i m a r y creations to create a n o t h e r category of m o r t a l of achieving these

T h e fifth creation is called Anugraha Sarga (favoured crea­ t i o n ) as it was created t h r o u g h the favour of Avyakta or Prakrti. It consists of four classes a n d they a r e b o r n a g a i n a n d a g a i n ( W . 5 1 - 5 2 a n d V V . 100-104). * T h e beautiful allegoric description of Y a j ñ a - V a r ā h a should be read in. the original V V . 11 ff.

J


xxxiv

Brahmānda Purāna

T h e sixth creation is the Bhūta-Sarga (creation of elements, Tanmātras). T h e r e seems to be some confusion (probably d u e to the uncritical n a t u r e of the T e x t ) . But to recapitulating the names of these sargas: /.

Primary Creation : (1)

Creation of Mahat

(2)

Creation of Tanmātras, (called Bhūta sarga here again)

(3)

Vaikārika

(Creation of Aindriya Sarga)

These are the Prākrta (created from Prakrti) Primary crea­ tions a n d //.

Secondary Creation : (4)

Mukhya Sarga

(5)

Tiryak-Srotas mals).

(Creation of insentients or ofimmobiles). (Creation of lower creatures a n d ani­

(6)

Ūrddhva Srotas (Creation of gods a n d divine beings).

(7)

Arvāksrotas

(8)

Anugraha-Sarga

(Creation of h u m a n beings) (Both Sāttvika a n d T ā m a s i k a )

These five (4-8) are called Vaikrta (Secondary) creations a n d these function without consciousness or fore-knowledge (a-buddhi-pūrvaka). III.

Primary-Cum-Secondary (?)

(9) T h e Kaumāra Creation—Creation by mind-born sons. But when S a n a t - K u m ā r a a n d others became Yogins a n d did n o t procreate, B r a h m a created mind-born sons viz. Bhrgu, Ańgiras, M a r ī c i , Pulastya, P u l a h a , K r a t u , Daksa, Atri a n d Vasistha from various parts of his body (I. i.5.70-76). These are termed as nine Brahmās as they participated in creation, b u t his m e n t a l sons S a n a t - K u m ā r a a n d K r a t u b e c a m e Yogins. L a t e r on ( W . 1 0 7 - 1 0 8 ) , the Rgvedic idea a b o u t the creation of four V a r n a s from different parts of the Lord's body, is stated. In spite of the overlapping of these theories, they represent a m e t a p h o r i c a l amplification a n d continuation of Vedic concepts w i t h a strong a d m i x t u r e of Sāńkhya (e.g. the concept of the


Introduction

XXXV

T r i n i t y o f g o d s — B r a h m a , Visnu a n d R u d r a ) . T h e corner­ stone of P u r ā n i c lore, is a m i x of the Vedic Brahman a n d t h e S ā ń k h y a concept of three gunas etc. PRATI-SARGA (DISSOLUTION AND

RE-CREATION)*

T h e Pralaya is of four types : (1)

Nilya—-usual

(2)

Naimittika

(3)

Prākrtika

(4)

Atyantika

(Periodical). (of P r a k r t i , the. p r i m o r d i a l n a t u r e ) (Absolute

or final).

(1) T h e Nitya Pralaya is w h a t goes on deaths of beings.

every d a y e.g.

(2) The Naimittika Pralaya takes place at the completion of a K a l p a i.e. at the end of one thousand sets of (Gatur) Yugas. G o d B r a h m a begins to absorb the subjects in h i m . A continuous d r o u g h t for h u n d r e d years, the Sun w i t h his seven rays burns up everything a n d evaporates the oceans. T h e S a m v a r t a k a fire burns down the four worlds viz. Bhū, Bhuvar, Svar a n d M a h a r . Thereafter, S a m v a r t a k a clouds p o u r down torrential rains a n d everything mobile a n d immobile is destroyed a n d dissolved i n t o one vast expanse of w a t e r a n d god B r a h m a becomes a thou»and-eyed, thousand-headed entity a n d goes to sleep for a period of one thousand sets of four Yugas (God B r a h m a ' s n i g h t ) ( I I . iv. 132-190). At the end of B r a h m a ' s night, he wakes up a n d recreates. T h e day a n d night of B r a h m a i.e. the complete day of B r a h m a is called Viśesa K a l p a (ibid. 190-210) (3) The Prākrlika Pralaya takes place at the end of B r a h m a ' s period. W h e n the P r a t y ā h ā r a ' (withdrawal of the Universe) is i m m i n e n t , Bhūtas (elements, both gross a n d subtle) are a n n i ­ hilated, evolutes of Prakrti beginning w i t h Mahat a h d e n d i n g with Viśesas are destroyed. T h e waters swallow the special quality—smell—of the e a r t h , the fire t h a t of the water u p t o Ākāśa which merges into Bhūtādi. In this way the higher evolute of Prakrti "swallows u p " the lower one, till at last t h e Mahat dis­ solves itself into Guna-sāmya (equilibrium of Gunas). Only, the •Cf. KP.1I.45. 1-10. VP.1.7.41-43, V I . 3 . 2 ff.


xxxvi

Brahmānda Purāna

A t m a n remains. T h i s process of reabsorption of Principles (Tattva-Sāmya) is r e c u r r e n t (II.iv.3-1-24). (4) Ātyantika Pralaya takes place when one becomes liberated t h r o u g h spiritual knowledge. He does n o t take up a n o t h e r body j u s t as a sprout (never comes o u t ) w h e n t h e seed is b u r n t , (ibid. 80-84). This is called "dissolution due to d a w n i n g of knowledge (II.iv.1.131). Manvantaras P u r ā n a s look u p o n T i m e as a form of G o d . 1 His power to create t h e universe by disturbing t h e equilibrium of gunas of P r a k r t i , the destroyer of all beings 2 a n d t h e empirical timesequence. T h e Bd. P. is c o m m i t t e d to the description of all M a n v a n t a r a s a n d K a l p a - p e r i o d s 3 a n d i t describes T i m e f i g u r a ­ tively in terms of units of time : " T h e S a n is his source a n d t h e period of nimefa* (twinkling of an eye or u t t e r a n c e of a short vowel) is his beginning. D a y a n d night constitute his form a n d nimesa-wa.it his limbs. T h e year is his essence. T h i s lord of sub­ jects (Prajāpati) is of t h e n a t u r e of t h e present, past a n d f u t u r e " . 5 T h e m a i n division of time are t h e day, the fortnight, t h e m o n t h , the season a n d Ayanas. 8 T h e M a n v a n t a r a s a r e based o n t h e concept o f Y u g a periods. Originally a Yuga consisted of five years called (1) Samvatsara, (2) Parivatsara, (3) Id or-Idāvatsara, (4) Anuvatsara a n d (5) V a t s a r a 7 . We find t h e same d u r a t i o n of Yuga in M b h . S a b h ā 11.37-38) K a u t i l y a 8 a n d Vedāńga-jyotisa. 8 1.

Yugābhimāni Kālātmā-Rudrafr / I.ii. 13.139

2.

I.ii.13.109.

3.

I.i.1.46

Sarva-bhūtāpahārakah / also see V. 149.

4. It m e a n s e i t h e r ' w i n k i n g of the e y e ' or 'time required short letter, (laghvakfaram) vide Bd. P. I.ii.29.5. nimtsakāla-tulyarh hi vidyāllaghvaksaram ca yat 5.

I.ii.l3.III-113a.

6.

Ibid. 113b-114a.

7.

Ibid. 114b-115.

to utter a

& Pañca-samvafsart yugam—Arlha-śāstra 11.20 p. 109. 9. Paftca-sarrwatsara-mayam Tugādhyaksam Prajāpatim V. 1. H e n c e K a n e conjectures that 'yuga' i n RV.III.26.3,111.55.18 m e a n s *a period of 5 years'.


xxxvii

Introduction

L a t e r on, the period of Yuga came to be extended to 12000 years e.g. Bd. P.I.ii.29.25-29, state 12,000 years as the total n u m b e r of years of four Yugas (including the ' t w i l i g h t ' y e a r s ) — a period endorsed by M a n u 1 a n d M b h . 8 . N o w h e r e is there a h i n t t h a t these are n o t h u m a n years b u t divine ones. But later on, the concept of 'divine' or s u p e r - h u m a n years developed as c a n be seen from units of time given as follows 8 . 15 nimesa «= K ā s t h ā ; 30 K ā s t h ā = K a l a 30 K a l ā s = M u h ū r t a ; 30 M u h ū r t a s = D a y a n d night (24 hours) 30 days = A m o n t h = O n e day a n d night of Pitrs 30 h u m a n m o n t h s = 1 year of Pitrs 360 h u m a n m o n t h s = 1

year o f Pitrs

H u m a n U t t a r ā y a n a =• 1 d a y of the Devas H u m a n D ā k s i n ā y a n a = 1 night of the Devas 1 h u m a n year = A complete d a y a n d night of Devas 30 H u m a n years = A m o n t h of Devas 360 H u m a n years = O n e year of Devas 3030 H u m a n years = 1 Saptarsi year 9090 H u m a n years = 1 D h r u v a year 360,000 H u m a n years = 1 , 0 0 0 years of gods. T h u s the Yuga periods w i t h the twilight period

(San-

dhyāmSa) of each Yuga is as follows:

1. 2. 3. 4.

Krta-yuga : Tretā-yuga : Dvāpara-yuga: Kali-yuga :

Period years 4000 4000 3000 3000 2000 2000 1000 1000

T o t a l period of four yugas (Caturyugi or MahS-yūga) 1.

Manu

2.

V a n a . 188.27.

1.71.

3.

Bd. P. I.U.29.5.-21.

Sandhyā 400 300 200 100

Sandhyāmśa 400 300 200 100

12,000

Total

= =

4800 3600

= -

2400 1200 years.


xxxviii

Brahmānia Purāna

But these are 'divine' years. A n d o u r P u r ā n a converts t h e m into h u m a n years as 4320,000. T h i s n e w concept of Yugas is adopted in P u r ā n a s vide K P . I . C h s . 5 1 , 5 3 N P . I. C h . 4 1 , M b h . V a n a , Chs. 149, 188, V P . 1.3, V ā . P . Chs. 2 1 , 22, 57, 58. T h e d a y of god B r a h m a consists of 1000 catur-yugis in which fourteen M a n u s ruled. It m e a n s a m a n v a n t a r a = catur^yKgtJ 14 or 71T«y catur-yugas or 12000 x 360 x 71 + 17,28000), or 30,67,20,000 h u m a n years 1 . Strangely e n o u g h , this yuga-theory is limited to B h ā r a t a - v a r s a . 2 T h e theory of Yugas a n d K a l p a s began to take shape in 300 B.C. a n d was fully developed in t h e first centuries of t h e Christian E r a . 3 The Characteristics of Yugas : O u r P u r ā n a offers a few remarks a b o u t t h e state of society in Krta-yuga : T h e r e was social equality. People were ever young, equal in b e a u t y a n d longevity. T h e y were w i t h o u t malice a n d h a d no conflicts. T h e institution of Varnāśrama-dharma (classification of Society into Vamas a n d Stages in life) was yet to be established. People lived in n a t u r a l surroundings as the climate was pleasant. Strangely enough, birds, beasts a n d reptiles were non-existant. K n o w l e d g e was valued the most. 4 The Tretā-Tuga : T h o u g h D h a r m a lost 'one leg' Vedic m a n t r a s a n d Siddhis which were 'lost' at the end of the (last) K a l p a , manifested themselves to sages. T h e belief in the eternal n a t u r e of mantras a n d their d i s a p p e a r a n c e at t h e end of a K a l p a only to manifest themselves at t h e beginning of a n o t h e r K a l p a is peculiar to P u r ā n a s . In T r e t ā Yuga, t h e r e was only one Vedic 8 Samhitā. T h e beginning of this Yuga was m a r k e d w i t h rainfall a n d l u x u r i a n t vegetations. People gave up their previous n o m a d i c

1.

Bd. P. 3 8 , 3 9 ; also V P . I. 3.19-21.

2.

Catvāri Bhārate varje yugāni kavayo'bruvan /

3.

Kane—HD.III.888-890.

4.

Bd.

5.

I b i d 74-195 and C h . 29.52-92.

P.

I.ii.7.45-59.

Ibid. 23


Introduction

xxxix

habits a n d settled by constructing houses in m o u n t a i n s , along the rivers a n d also establishing villages, townships etc. T h e y m a i n t a i n e d themselves by products from the trees b u t due to some climatic change, the vegetation was 'swallowed u p ' by the e a r t h a n d the e a r t h h a d to be 'milched' as per god B r a h m a ' s direction (i.e. Agriculture was d e v e l o p e d ) . T h e Social structure based on fixed prescribed duties (Varnāśrama-dharma) came to be established. T h e Saptarsis (Seven sages) laid down Śrauta a n d Smārta dharmas. T h e institution of Kingship a n d of L a w a n d order (Dandaniti) became established. Ritualistic sacrifice c a m e in vogue in T r e t ā . The Dvāpara-Yuga W i t h two 'legs' of D h a r m a lost, this Yuga shows the deterioration a n d confusion of social, religious a n d o t h e r conditions providing the background for the chaos of K a l i Yuga. It is in every D v ā p a r a t h a t a Vyāsa is born to a r r a n g e the floating Vedic hymns into four Sarhhitās. This idea of an i n c a r n a t i o n of a Vyāsa is found in other P u r ā n a s such as V P . I I I . 3, Bh. P. 1.4. 24-25, K P . I. 52, V ā . P. 23.107-213. T h e list of the Vyāsa per each D v ā p a r a is as follows : 2 1. Svayambhū (Self-born god B r a h m a ) , 2. P r a j ā p a t i , 3 . U ś a n a s , 4 . Brhaspati, 5. Savitr, 6. M r t y u , 7. Indra,8.Vasistha, 9. Sārasvata, 10. T r i d h ā m a n , 11. T r i v a r s a , , 1 2 . Sanadvāja 13. Antarīksa, 14. D h a r m a , 15. T r a i y y ā r u m , 16. D h a n a ñ j a y a , 17. Krtañjaya, 18. Rjīsa, 19. Bharadvāja, 20. G a u t a m a , 2 1 . U t t a m a , 2 2 . Haryavarhśa, 23. V e n a , 24. Vājaśravasa, 25. Somam u k h y ā y a n a , 26. T r n a b i n d u , 27. T a t a j a , 28. Śakti, 29. P a r ā ś a r a . 30. J ā t u k a r n a , 3 1 . D v a i p ā y a n a . 32. F u t u r e Vyāsa, D r o n i (Aśvatthāman). So here we have a bonus of three m o r e Vyāsas in lo the prescribed twenty-eight. 3

addition

Kali Tuga :* Almost all P u r ā n a s depict a gloomy p i c t u r e of t h e K a l i Age e.g. M b h . V a n a . Chs. 188, 190, Śānti 69.80-97, 1.

Bh. P. Ch. 3 1 .

2.

Ibid. Ch. 35.116-126.

3.

T h e r e are different n a m e s in t h e list of Vyāsas in K P . I. 52 viz. 11.

Rsabha, 12 Sutejas 14. Sucaksus 18. Rtañjaya 2 2 . N ā r ā y a n a , 2 4 . Vālmiki. 4.

Ibid. C h . 31.33-101.


xl

Brahmānda Purāna

Bh. P. X I I . 1-2, V P . V I . 1, V ā y u 58 a n d 99. 391-428, M t . P. 143.32-78. It a p p e a r s t h a t t h a t was the a c t u a l state of the society when P u r ā n a s were written, though they prophesise it as a future state of society. 1 In a p r o p h e t i c tone, our P u r ā n a says : T h e D h a r m a will be on the last leg. M e n a n d women will be character-less. K s a t t r i y a a n d Vaiśya classes will be practically eliminated. Brahmins will be fallen a n d associate with Sūdras in eating etc. a n d bow to t h e m . Śūdras will be kings a n d act as B r ā h m a n a s . Kings instead of protecting subjects will act like robbers. P r e d o m i n a n c e of Buddhists, J a i n s , K ā p ā l i k a s a n d atheists is predicted. T h e only relieving feature is t h a t a person gets the fruit of his good act immediately in Kali-yuga. 2 At last god Visnu incarnates a n d puts an end to the chaotic conditions. Seventyone such groups of four Yugas constitute a man­ vantara. A M a n u presides over the world for this period of seventyone cycles of four yugas. E a c h M a n u has his separate set of I n d r a , gods, saptarsis (seven sages) etc. All M a n u s a n d their p a r a p h e r n a l i a ( I n d r a etc.) have the same powers, function etc. as those of the previous ones. T h e n u m b e r of M a n u s is fourteen. O u t of t h e m six have already ruled a n d retired. T h e present M a n u is Vaivasvata. T h e n a m e s of the M a n u s are as follows:— (1) S v ā y a m b h u v a , (2) Svārocisa, (3) U t t a m a , (4) T ā m a s a , (5) R a i v a t a , (6) Cāksusa, (7) Vaivasvata (8) M a n u M e r u ( ? ) Sāvarni, (9) D a k s a Sāvarni (10) B r a h m a Sāvarni, (11) D h a r m a - S ā v a r n i , (12) R u d r a - S ā v a r n i , (13) R a u c y a (14) Bhautya. T h e following e x a m p l e of one M a n u S v ā y a m b h u v a 3 will illustrate t h e personnel a t t e n d i n g u p o n a M a n u . 1.

R. C. H a z r a points out that such was the actual condition

of

the

H i n d u Society after A ś o k a a n d before 200 A . D . (Puranic Records on Hindu Rites and Customs II Ch. 1 ) . 2.

Bd. P. I. ii. 3 1 . 31-72b.

3.

V i d e Bd. P . I.ii.36 a n d I I I . i v . l .


xli

Introduction I

Manu-—Svāyambhuva:

(1) G o d s — Y ā m a s , (2) I n c a r n a t i o n of Visnu, Yajña, officiated as I n d r a (3) Seven Sages—Marīci, Atri, Ańgiras, P u l a h a , K r a t u , Pulastya, Vasistha. II

Manu—Svārocisa

( I ) G o d s — 1 2 T u s i t a s a n d 12 P ā r ā v a t a s (2) Indra—Vipas'cit (3) Seven Sages (the descendants of the Saptarsis of the p r e ­ vious M a n v a n t a r a ) — Ū r j a , S t a m b a , P r ā n a , R s a b h a , D a t t a , Niścala, Arvārivan. (4) S o n s — N i n e sons such as C a i t r a , K i m p u r u s a a n d others. F o u r t e e n M a n v a n t a r a s complete the day of god B r a h m a . At the end of god B r a h m a ' s day, there is a deluge. After taking rest'at n i g h t ' of an equal d u r a t i o n as t h a t of the day, god B r a h m a creates the Universe as he did in the previous K a l p a 1 —a fact h a m m e r e d by the a u t h o r of the P u r ā n a every now a n d t h e n . As n o t e d above, the Pralaya after the completion of a d a y of B r a h m a is called Naimittika while t h a t at the end of life of B r a h m " is called Prākrlika Pralaya. (4 & 5) Varhśa and Vamśānucarita Genealogies of ancient dynasties are the chief d a t a for reconstructing history of ancient I n d i a . T h e disbelief of early scholars in P u r ā n i c accounts of these dynasties is now m u c h modified by the works of F . E . Pargiter, 2 S. N. P r a d h a n , 3 H. C. R a y c h a u d h a r y , 4 A . D . Pusalkar 6 a n d others. Scholars like M . K . A c h a r y a 8 D . R . M a n k a d ' a n d others have tried t o recon­ struct the chronology of these ancient events. Pusalkar, in the Vedic Age takes 3102 B . C . — t h e usual d a t e for Deluge or Flood

1. akalpayat 2.

Vide for e x a m p l e Op. cit.

31.118-119.

/

Cf.

D h ā t ā yathā-pūrvam

Mahānārāyanīya

A n c i e n t I n d i a n Historical Tradition.

3.

Chronology of A n c i e n t India.

4.

Political History of A n c i e n t India.

5.

V e d i c A g e (Bharatiya V i d y a Bhavan, B o m b a y ) .

6.

D a t e s of A n c i e n t I n d i a n

7.

Purānic Chronology.

History.

5.7


xlii

Brahmānda Purāna

in M e s o p o t a m i a — a s the definite starting point for the date of M a n u Vaivasvata a n d divides the ancient I n d i a n historical periods as follows : (1)

M a n u Vaivasvata period 3102 B.C.

(2)

Yayāti Period (C. 3000—2750 B.C.)

(3)

M ā n d h ā t ā Period (C. 2750—2550 B.C.)

(4)

P a r a ś u r ā m a Period

(5)

(Dās'arathi) R ā m a c a n d r a p e r i o d ( C . 2350-1950 B.C.)

(6)

K r s n a period

(C. 2550—2350 B.C.)

(C. 1950—1400 B.C.)

Tentatively, I accept this chronological frame work. O u r P u r ā n a describes the dynasties of Vaivasvata M a n u (I.ii.chs. 36, 38, I l . i i i . 59, 6 0 ) . T h e dynasties of sages like K ā ś y a p a , Atri^Vasistha (Il.iii.Chs. 5-8), Dynasties of Iksvāku, N i m i (Ibid Chs. 6 3 , 6 4 ) , of Amāvasu a n d D h a n v a n t a r i (Ibid Chs. 66-67), the L u n a r dynasty (Ibid Chs. 65, 68-71). Despite these a t t e m p t s in fixing period frames a n d deter­ m i n a t i o n of c o n t e m p o r a r y kings (for example D a ś a r a t h a of Ayodhyā a n d Divodāsa of V ā r ā n a s ī ) , the chronology of these kings is comparative a n d a sort of r a t i o n a l guess work ! We are on firmer grounds from the time of Megasthenes. Although Sandrocottus mentioned by Megasthenes is showed to be C a n d r a g u p t a I of the G u p t a dynasty a n d n o t C a n d r a g u p t a M a u r y a , according to K. D. S e t h n a . 1 I, however, still believe t h a t Megasthenes refers to C a n d r a g u p t a M a u r y a . O u r P u r ā n a has given the following dynasties of the K a l i age (i) Pauravas (Parīksit to K s e m a k a ) , (ii) Aiksvākus (Brhadbala to S u m i t r a ) , (iii) B ā r h a d r a t h a s (Sahadeva to Ripuñjaya) Bd.P.II.iii 74-107b—122a. (iv) Pradyotas, (v) Śiśunāgas (vi) N a n d a s 74.139-143. (ibid. 74.122b-127a.) (74.127b-135a) (vii) M a u r y a s (74.144-1449) (viii) Suńgas (74.150-156a.) (ix) K ā n v ā y a n a s (74.156b-160a.) a n d (x) A n d h r a s (74.160b170.)

1.

Trover in A . D . 1858 advocated this

identity in his Rājatarańginī.

This is confirmed by K . D . Sethna, G. C. Bose a n d others (Purāna J a n . & J u l y 1966).


xliii

Introduction

T h e various periods of these genealogies given in this P u r ā n a are roughly correct. 1 T h u s , o u r P u r ā n a supplies i m p o r t a n t m a t e r i a l o n the history of ancient india a n d stands the test of the Paftcalaksana criterion. Pañca-Laksana and Four Pādas So the problem arises : W h a t is the relation between t h e four Pādas of the Bd. P. to these Pañca-laksanas ? O u r P u r ā n a positively states: 'This P u r ā n a as recognised by people consists of four Pādas viz. (I) Prakriyā, (2) Anusañga, (3) Upodghāta a n d (4) Upa-Samhāra?, (III.iv.4.43-44). Roughly these four divisions have a c c o m m o d a t e d the ñveLaksanas of a P u r ā n a as follows: (1) Prakriyā—It means the creation of the Universe a n d corresponds to Sarga. O u r P u r ā n a describes the Vedic m e t a ­ physics of creation in a P u r ā n i c m a n n e r in Chs. 3, 4 a n d 5 of Prakriyā pāda w h e n it deals w i t h the original state of equilibrium of gunas, the laying of the Golden egg a n d emergence of H i r a n y a ­ g a r b h a (Lord B r a h m a , the creator from i t ) . (2) Anusañga-pāda : As its n a m e suggests it is a connected c o n t i n u a t i o n of the previous pāda a n d includes the b i r t h a n d genealogies of Brahmarsis (Brahmanical Sages), Devarsis (celes­ tial sages) a n d Rājarsis (Royal Sages as in Chs. 8-38. (3) Upodghāta Pāda : T h i s seems to have c o m b i n e d in itself the M a n v a n t a r a a n d V a r h ś ā n u k i r t a n a . A sort of overlaping a n d m i x i n g up of topics seems to h a v e taken p l a c e as t h e D y n a s t y of M a n u a n d the topic of M a n v a n t a r a s is given in Chs. 36-38 of the previous section. T h e lineages of Sages w h i c h should have formed a p a r t of the previous section a r e given in the I I I Section C h s . 1-7. T h e topic of Śrāddha a n d an inflated version of P a r a ś u r ā m a legend (which are probably accretions of a later d a t e ) have occupied Chs. 12-58. T h e topic of Vaivas-

1.

For the details of these dynasties see the annotations on that c h a p t e r

( I l . i i i . 7 4 ) . And 2.

infra

Prakriyā

'Historical

prathamah

Tradition

pādah

in Bd. P.'

kathāyās

tu

parigrahah

j

Anusañga upodghāta upasamhāra eta ca // evam

eva

catuh-psdam

purānam

loka-sammatam

/


xliv

Brahmānda Purāna

v a t a M a n u is r e p e a t e d in Chs. 59-60. A n d t h e real Varhśān u k r a m a dealing w i t h the dynasties of Iksvāku, N i m i etc. are c r a m m e d in Chs. 63-71 (which was p r o b a b l y the older portion in t h e original P u r ā n a ) a n d Ch. 74 which deals with the dynasties in K a l i age in a prophetic vein. (4) Upasamhāra Pāda : It deals with t h e dissolution of t h e Universe a n d corresponds to the Pratisarga laksana. A l t h o u g h I have discussed t h e M ū l a P u r ā n a theory in my introduction to t h e N ā r a d a P u r ā n a (pp. 2-9), it is difficult to state which topics formed t h e p a r t s of the original catus-pāda B r a h m ā n d a P u r ā n a in the absence of a critical edition. IV.

Religious Sects in the Bd. P.

A l t h o u g h the Bd. P. believes in t h e P a r a B r a h m a n as the u l t i m a t e principle a n d t h e trinity of g o d s — B r a h m a , V i s n u , Śiva as His manifestation on a lower p l a n e , it testifies to t h e existence of t h e following religious sects at t h a t time. 1.

Śaivism

R u d r a or Śiva as M a h e ś v a r a is the S u p r e m e deity. Śiva on a lower p l a n e is b o r n of god B r a h m a as Nīla-lohita a n d was given the following eight names : (along w i t h t h e explanation of their significence) R u d r a , Bhava, Śarva, ī ś ā n a , P a ś u p a t i {Paśūnām patih in the t e x t ) , Bhīma, U g r a a n d M a h ā d e v a 1 . F r o m the B r ā h m a n a period where (as in t h e Satapatha V I . 1.3.1-18) R u d r a was r e g a r d e d as b o r n from P r a j ā p a t i a n d was given the same list of n a m e s (except Aśani for Bhima in Bd. P . ) . T h e n a m e s Śarva, Bhīma, U g r a indicate t h e terrific or des­ tructive aspect of R u d r a , while the rest, his auspicious n a t u r e . He is credited to have created all the Universe including god B r a h m a a n d V i s n u . 2 Siva's four faces create functions of guar­ d i a n s o f q u a r t e r s such a s I n d r a , K u b e r a a n d V a r u n a . Mythological legends T h e most o u t s t a n d i n g feat ascribed to R u d r a in all the P u r ā n a s (e.g. Bh. P. I V . 5, L P . I. 99 & 100, N P . II.66.5-16, 1. Bd. P. I.ii.10. 2. O p . Cit. I. 2.26.9. Śukra's eulogy of Nilalohita II.iii.72.163-195.


Introduction

xlv

Siva II.1.1-36 V ā . P. 1.30.122-160) is t h e destruction of Daksa's sacrifice. T h e legend dates back to the B r ā h m a n a period w h e r e (as in Ś a t a p a t h a a n d K a u s ī t a k i ) Daksa's m o r a l t u r p i t u d e is given as the cause of destruction. T h e M b h . ( Ś ā n t i 283.26-33) attributes the destruction of D a k s a ' s sacrifice to his denial to give R u d r a his d u e sacrificial share. But in t h e n e x t c h a p t e r (284) sage D a d h ī c i is said to have c o n d e m n e d D a k s a for not inviting Śiva a n d cursed t h a t it would n o t be completed (ibid 284.12-21). But in o u r P u r ā n a ( I . I I . 13.45 ff) D a k s a insults his eldest d a u g h t e r Satī, the wife of Śiva. Satī immolates herself in Yogic fire. R u d r a a n d D a k s a m u t u a l l y curse e a c h other. A n o t h e r miracle a t t r i b u t e d to Śiva is the drinking of H a l ā h a l a poison w h i c h emerged while c h u r n i n g the milky ocean. He was requested by god B r a h m a to save the world from it. Śiva d r a n k it a n d b e c a m e blue-throated as the effect of t h a t deadly poison (I.ii. 24.7-98). T h e M b h . (Śānti 342.114-115) attributes it to the strangling of Siva's t h r o a t by V i s n u in a fight. B d . P . takes every o p p o r t u n i t y to glorify Siva. P a r a ś u r ā m a , an i n c a r n a t i o n of Visnu, is advised by his forbear Aurva to perform p e n a n c e for propitiation of Śiva a n d secure from h i m his secret missiles. P a r a ś u r ā m a performs p e n a n c e , is tested by Śiva a n d g r a n t e d the missiles (Il.iii.Chs. 22-24). F o r avenging his father's d e a t h by killing Sahasrārjuna, P a r a ś u r ā m a a p p r o a ­ ches B r a h m a for guidance a n d is directed to p r o p i t i a t e Śiva by p e n a n c e (Il.iii. Chs. 31-32). As a contrast, M b h . Ś ā n t i , disposes of this episode in a few verses, even t h o u g h it is a 'Bhrguised' version. The

Śiva-lińga M o d e r n scholars hold t h a t the symbol (Liñga) of Śiva is his phallus. As in KP (1.26.66-99) the Liñga of Śiva is the m a n i ­ festation of a c o l u m n of fire (the Skarhbha in A . V . ) t h e beginning a n d e n d of w h i c h were u n t r a c e a b l e a n d hence incomprehensible to gods B r a h m a a n d V i s n u (1.2.25.18-28). T h e y j o i n t l y p r a y e d t h a t L i ñ g a in terms a t t r i b u t a b l e to the Supreme-most power w h o creates, permeates, protects, destroys everything. It is called para Brahman, the highest abode (paramam padam)etc. ( I b i d . W. 3 1 - 5 4 ) . It is as it were a g a r l a n d of the epithets of Siva.


xlvi

Brahmānda Purāna

T h e identification of R u d r a a n d sacrificial fire is found in V e d i c literature (e.g. Tail. Sam. V . i v . 3 . 1 ) . T h e similarity in Lińga-worship a n d fire-worship is significant. H e r e t h e phallusaspect has no place. As in K P . I I . 38-39, Śiva P. I V . 12.4-54, our P u r ā n a des­ cribes the falling of the Phallus of Śiva in D ā r u v a n a ( I . i i . 2 7 ) . G o d Śiva c a m e to bless the sages of D ā r u v a n a a n d d e m o n s t r a t ­ ed to t h e m the P ā ś u p a t a way of reducing sins by inviting public •censure, technically called 'Dvāra' which includes o u t w a r d acts of courting (śrńgārana), irrelevant speech (avitad-bhāsana e t c . ) * . T h e sages were aghast as the behaviour was against dharma as they understood it. T h e y requested h i m to d r o p his p h a l l u s ; c l o t h e himself a n d speak gently. Śiva of his own accord d r o p p e d it a n d disappeared. G o d B r a h m a advised t h e m to p r e p a r e its r e p l i c a a n d worship h i m . T h e words are : drstarh vai y ā d r ś a m tasya lińgam āsīn m a h ā t m a n a h / Tādrk-pratikrtirh krtvā Ś ū l a p ā n i m p r a p a d y a t a // 'After m a k i n g the replica of t h e Liñga of the great soul in the same form as seen by you, resort to Lord with the trident in his hand.' Strictly speaking, this is not the direct advocacy of phallusworship. N o r the Lińga-replica p r e p a r e d by t h e m could include Toni. But the h i n t of phallus-worship is clear, t h o u g h the two panegyrics o f Lord Śiva, one b y God B r a h m a ( W . 47-55) a n d t h e other by the sages of D ā r u v a n a ( W . 63-91) show t h a t our P u r ā n a pays the greatest respect to L o r d Śiva. T h e r e m a i n i n g c h a p t e r is a glorification a n d explanation of the elements of P ā ś u p a t i s m as follows: (i)

T h e P ā ś u p a t a vow is based on Yoga a n d was chro­ nologically p r o m u l g a t e d at first. T h e Varnāśramadharma is a later creation by god B r a h m a (VV. 116-117).

(i)

Bath in holy ashes is essential. H o l y ashes are the semen of god Śiva a n d they reduce to ashes all the sins of h i m w h o besmears himself w i t h it. It has

•For details pp.

18-19.

cf.

vide

KP.

Bhāsarvajña's Ratnatīkā

11.39.15-17.

on

Haradatta's

Ganakārikā


Introduction

xlvii a protective influence against all evils. A person whose self is purified by applying the ashes a n d is self controlled is liberated ( W . 106-115).

Skanda—Kārt tikeya T h e P u r ā n a does n o t explain the K u m ā r a - V i d y ā a n d the yogic significance of the legend of the Śaivite god S k a n d a - K ā r t tikeya. Bd. P. (II.iii.9.22-51) gives the legend as follows: I n d r a being afraid of the child t h a t would be b o r n of Siva a n d U m ā requested Agni (the omnipresent Fire-god) to disturb their sexual intercourse. At the a p p e a r a n c e of Agni, U m ā n a t u r a l l y got up a n d the Semen of R u d r a was spilt on the g r o u n d . Being enraged, U m ā , as a p u n i s h m e n t for his disturbance at such a j u n c t u r e , forced Agni to carry the semen as foetus in his belly. F i n d i n g it u n b e a r a b l e , he requested the river G a ń g ā to carry it. G a ñ g ā also was too m u c h t o r m e n t e d to b e a r it a n d discharged it. His b i r t h was welcomed w i t h j o y by all divine beings. T h e wives of six Saptarsis (except Vasistha's wife A r u n d h a t ī ) fed h i m a n d the god manifested six m o u t h s to suck t h e m a n d c a m e to be known as Sanmukha ( S i x - m o u t h e d ) . He is the defeater of the enemies of gods a n d hence is called Skanda. He was b r o u g h t up by six K r t t i k ā s (Pleids) a n d hence was known as Kārttikeya. W h e n he yawned, a javeline (Śakti) came out of his m o u t h . G o d V i s n u gave h i m two birds, a cock a n d a pea-cock. It is n o t e w o r t h y t h a t K u s h a n seals from t h e - 1st to 3rd cent A . D . represent K ā r t t i k e y a holding a javeline a n d a cock. He was a n o i n t e d as the commander-in-chief of the a r m y of Devas. A seal of the 5 t h C e n t A . D . from M a t h u r a represents h i m as seated on a peacock a n d being installed by god B r a h m a a n d Śiva (?) as the leader of Deva a r m y . O u r P u r ā n a does n o t record his m a r r i a g e w i t h a girl called Devasenā as in M b h . Vana 229. Being a destroyer of the a r m y of enemies of gods he is called Skanda. A n o t h e r r e m a r k a b l e factor is t h a t his a r m y consists of goblins a n d evil spirits (Pramathas a n d Vināyakas) in a d d i t i o n to Devas. T h i s supports the tradition which explains his n a m e s M a h ā s e n a a n d K u m ā r a associated w i t h diseases like d e m o n cough (as in Pāraskara Grhya Sūtra) a n d his permission to the M o t h e r s to be evil spirits ( M b h . Vana 2 2 0 . 2 2 ) . Skanda's inability to intervene in the scuffle between


xlviii

Brakmānda Purāna

P a r a ś u r ā m a a n d G a n e ś a in w h i c h P a r a ś u r ā m a smashed the tusk of G a n e ś a a n d his performance of the role of a r e p o r t e r of the incident to Pārvatī (Bd.P.II.3.41.32-55 a n d ibid 42.1-10) is not creditable to the commander-in-chief of the D e v a army. A cult worshipping the image of S k a n d a , was in vogue at the time of Patañjali (1st C e n t A . D . ) a n d the n a m e s of Skanda were a d o p t e d b y the rulers o f the G u p t a d y n a s t y . T h e n a m e S u b r a h m a n y a is not applied to Skanda in our P u r ā n a (and also in t h e M b h . ) Ganeśa G a n e ś a , the elephant-headed god whose images are found all over Eastern Asia has an h o n o u r a b l e place even a m o n g the Buddhists as a later d e v e l o p m e n t of the V e d i c B r a h m a n a s p a t i . O u r P u r ā n a notes two exploits of this leader of the G a n a s of god Śiva. T h e benevolent G a n e ś a is t h e son of U m ā . W h e n P a r a ś u r ā m a w e n t to L o r d Śiva to report his exploit (the killing of Sahasrārjuna) Śiva a n d U m ā were in their privacy. G a n e ś a a n d S k a n d a were g u a r d i n g the door of t h a t private a p a r t m e n t . G a n e ś a prohibited P a r a ś u r ā m a from i m m e d i a t e e n t r a n c e . W h e n he was forcing his way in, G a n e ś a lifted up P a r a ś u r ā m a , whirled h i m in all the different worlds a n d placed h i m on the ground again. Being over-powered thus by G a n e ś a , P a r a ś u r ā m a h u r l e d t h e axe given to h i m by L o r d Sańkara. In order to respect the axe of god Śiva, G a n e ś a allowed a tusk of his to be cut down (II.iii.42.1-5). Pārvatī became offended at this act of P a r a ś r ā m a a n d r e m o n s t r a t e d w i t h lord Siva for his favouritism to P a r a ś u r ā m a as against his son G a n e ś a a n d w a n t e d to leave Siva's house w i t h h e r children. U l t i m a t e l y Lord K i s n a a n d R ā d h ā consoled h e r a n d b r o u g h t a b o u t a rapproachment between Pārvatī a n d P a r a ś u r ā m a {ibid. 2.3.43.28-54). T h e second episode (Bd. P. I I . 3.67) is n o t creditable b o t h to Śiva a n d G a n e ś a . Siva's mother-in-law did not approve of his u n c o n v e n t i o n a l ways. U m ā , Siva's spouse felt insulted a n d straightway urged Śiva to seek residence elsewhere. Śiva selected V ā r ā n a s ī , the capital of Divodāsa. Śiva commissioned G a n e ś a n a m e d N i k u m b h a or K s e m a or K s e m a k a ) to get V ā r ā n a s ī vacated for his (Siva's) residence. G a n e ś a (i.e. N i k u m b h a ) a p p e a r e d in a d r e a m to a B r a h m i n M a ń k a n a a n d asked h i m to


xlix

Introduction

instal his image at t h e outskirt of the city {nagaryante). M a ń k a n a obeyed a n d G a n e ś a went on giving munificent gifts a c c o r d i n g to the wishes of all his worshippers. At last t h e fame of t h e deity as a dispenser of all desires i n c l u d i n g sons, gold, longevity—in fact everything reached king Sudās. K i n g Sudās who was issueless directed his senior q u e e n Suyaśā to worship G a n e ś a a n d p r a y h i m to g r a n t h e r a son. In spite of her r e p e a t e d services, N i k u m b h a purposely did not g r a n t her t h e b o o n . " T h e god is benevolent a n d m u n i ­ ficent to my subjects b u t is ungrateful e n o u g h to g r a n t me n o t h i n g in spite of our r i c h worship, meals etc. T h i s is no god b u t an evil spirit (Bhuta). I shall destroy t h e shrine of this G a n a p a t i " . (ibid. VV. 51-54). In his desperation t h e king destroyed t h e shrine of N i k u m b h a - G a n e ś a . N i k u m b h a got a fine excuse a n d he cursed t h a t t h e city of V ā r ā n a s ī be totally deserted. W h e n V ā r ā n a s ī b e c a m e v a c a n t N i k u m b h a reported the m a t t e r to god Śiva w h o c a m e to live there w i t h his spouse. (ibidW. 55-62) God Śiva alone knows the m o r a l justification of this act. K s e m a k a alias N i k u m b h a was really a R ā k s a s a . At t h e e n d of t h e period of t h e curse, king M a h ā b ā h u killed d e m o n K s e m a k a a n d r e h a b i l i t a t e d the beautiful city of V ā r ā n a s ī . T h e curse motif for t h e desertion of Vārānasī by Divodāsa is used in t h e H a r i v a m ś a , B r a h m a a n d Vā P. b u t it records it as a p h a s e in the conflict between H a i h a y a s a n d the kings of V ā r ā n a s ī (Pargiter A I H T . , p . 2 6 3 ) . Epithets of Ganeśa D u r i n g reconciliation of Pārvatī, K r s n a explains the signi­ ficance of various n a m e s of G a n e ś a : (1) Ganeśa—The commander-in-chief powerful tribes (groups) of P r a m a t h a s .

of

the

various

(2) Lambodara : He contains within his belly all t h e p a s t , present a n d future B r a h m a n d a s . (3) Gajānana : W h e n b e h e a d e d , t h e h e a d of an ele­ p h a n t was substituted on his torso in its p l a c e . (4) Bhālacandra : W h e n the m o o n was cursed on t h e 4 t h d a y of a fortnight he held the m o o n on his forehead.


1

Brahmānda Purāna

(5) Śūrpakarnaka—When t h e fire-god, being cursed by Saptarsis (Seven Sages), was on the point of extinction, he rekind­ led it by (the flapping of) his ears. ( 6 ) Vighna-nāśa—Before the battle with Asuras, gods worshipped h i m a n d he w a r d e d off all their impediments. (7) Ekadanta—Due to chopping off one tusk by Paraśu­ rāma. (8) Vakra-tunda : In the future creation his snout will be b e n t . Since the T e n t h K a l p a , G a n e ś a got priority of worship before all gods. K r s n a further gives the boon t h a t all auspicious rites such as Jātakarma (consecratory rites after b i r t h ) , Garbhādhāna, in proceeding on a j o u r n e y to holy places or on trade or business missions or military expedition. G a n e ś a will be worshipped first a n d the u n d e r t a k i n g will be successful*. T h e P a r a ś u r ā m a episode is revised a n d enlarged. T h e above 'boons' show t h a t the cult of G a n e ś a was well-established a n d t h e e m i n e n t position given to h i m in H i n d u P a n t h e o n dates prior to the final redaction of this P u r ā n a . Vaisnavism O u r P u r ā n a identifies V i s n u w i t h the B r a h m a n . As the enlightener a n d revealer of the G u n a Rajas he becomes Brahma, t h e creator, a n d of the T a m a s , he becomes K ā l a , the destroyer, a n d t h a t of Sattva, he stands separate as a sustainer of t h e universe (Bd. P. I. i.*4-7). It m e a n s t h a t on the Lower Plane B r a h m a , V i s n u a n d R u d r a are the representatives of the gunas Rajas, Sattva a n d T a m a s (Ibid. I.i.4.6-8). T h e y are t h e three states of the B r a h m a n (ibidW. 17-19). Visnu is called a thou­ sand-headed P u r u s a who is threefold according to gunas, four­ fold according to Vyūhas (manifestations). He is Ādya (First), Aja ( u n b o r n ) , Nārāyana (causing sleep i.e. perfect rest of Naras), omniscient, t h e divine Om (ibidW. 20-30). "It is this great god w h o incarnates for t h e sake of gods to destroy Adharma a n d to establish Dharma (II.iii.72.64., 73.69-70). A n o t h e r reason a t t r i b u t e d to Visnu's descent is t h e curse of Sage Bhrgu. W h e n t h e Asuras took shelter in the h e r m i t a g e of Bhrgu, *Bd. P. I I . iii. 42.30-44.


li

Introduction

I n d r a , Visnu a n d other gods attacked t h e m . Bhrgu's wife rushed forward a n d ordered I n d r a a n d others to get out, other­ wise she would b u r n t h e m down by her power of P e n a n c e . At the instigation of I n d r a , Visnu killed her. T h e sage Bhrgu cursed Visnu to take birth as a h u m a n being seven times a n d in their presence restored his wife back to life (ibid 7 2 . W 116-147). T h e original P u r ā n a h a d ten incarnations of Visnu, three divine a n d seven h u m a n . But later accretions a d d e d two m o r e to the divine i n c a r n a t i o n s a n d one m o r e (that of P r a m a t i ) to the h u m a n incarnations. T h e serial Nos. in R o m a n figures in the table below indicate the original n u m b e r i n g of the P u r ā n a . Incar­ nation No.

Period

Cāksusa Manvantara Vaivasvata Manvantara

Name of the incarnation

Name of his Preceptor and other details

Nārāyana

Son of D h a r m a

P r t h u the Son of V e n a

God Brahma himself be­ came the sacrificial priest of P r t h u ' s yajña. Born within the O c e a n when gods were in distress. For slaying H i r a n y a Kaśipu. Begged of Bali, while he was performing a sacri­ fice, three paces of l a n d . Bali gladly d o n a t e d it when V ā m a n a assumed a refulgent T r i v i k r a m a form, deprived Bali of his kingdom of the three worlds, bound down Bali a n d confined Bali a n d his tribe to P ā t ā l a . And gave the kingdom of t h r e e worlds to I n d r a . (firf.iUI.iii.73.70-86.

V a r ā h a (?)

II-

Narasimha

III

Vāmana


lii

Brahmānda Purāna

He enumerates the following seven incarnations of Visnu a m o n g h u m a n beings. Period Name Details Incar­ nation No. 10th T r e t ā y u g a D a t t ā t r e y a His preceptor's n a m e IV Mārkandeya. King His preceptor, U t a t h y a . 15th T r e t ā V Yuga Māndhātā 19th T r e t ā Preceptor Viśvāmitra, Paraśurāma V I Yuga Annihilated Ksattriyas. Son of Jamadagni V I I 24th T r e t ā R ā m a , Son of P r e c e p t o r Vasistha Yuga Daśaratha Exploit : Killing of Rāvana. Preceptor J ā t u k a r n y a 28th D v ā p a r a Veda-Vyāsa VIII Yuga son of P a r ā ś a r a Preceptor Gārgya a n d I X 28th D v ā p a r a K r s n a (Vā­ m a n a ) son of S ā n d i p a n i . Killed Dai— e n d period Devakī (Aditi) tyas Kamsa, Śālva, a n d Vasudeva J a r ā s a n d h a , Naraka, ( K a ś y a p a ) in cut off Bāna's 1000 V r s n i family arms. Annihilated K u r u s , established D h a r m a . Preceptor Yājñavalkya; X F u t u r e I n c a r ­ Will be b o r n in the Family w i t h his a r m y he will n a t i o n : Kalki conquer a n d extermior Visnuyaśas of P a r ā ś a r a , son of Devan a t e Mlecchas. sena. V i s n u formerly E x t e r m i n a t i n g living beI n the 2 5 t h K a l p a a t the called P r a m a t i ings for 25 years. People end of Kaliin C a n d r a m a s also will kill each other, Yuga. Gotra. usurp properties of others a n d in the twilight of K a l i age the n u m b e r of people will dwindle d o w n ; w i t h the d a w n o f K r t a age h a p p y period will p r e v a i l (cf. Mt. P. 143.61-65).


Introduction

liii

T h i s list of Visnu's i n c a r n a t i o n shows a fluid state w h e n n e w accretions were m a d e t o o u r T e x t . T h a t t h e n u m b e r o f incarnations is ten is the firm belief of t h e a u t h o r w h o e n u m e r a t e s t h e m as 2nd, 5 t h e t c . But some additions were m a d e later as in t h e case of P r a m a t i , the so-called t e n t h I n c a r n a t i o n of V i s n u . T h e verses a r e obviously a d a p t e d from M t . P. 143.61-65, even w h e n the 10th i n c a r n a t i o n K a l k i alias Visnuyaśas is already described. T h e s t a n d a r d list o f t e n incarnations of V i s n u now-a-days does n o t include K i n g P r t h u , M ā n d h ā t ā , D a t t ā t r e y a , Vyāsa. T h e cause of non-mention of the Boar-incarnation is per­ haps d u e to its detailed t r e a t m e n t in I.i.5.1-27. T h e r e too, V i s n u whose abode is waters ( N ā r ā y a n a ) is described as sleeping on the vast expanse of Cosmic W a t e r s a n d he wished to lift up the submerged e a r t h a n d assumed the form of Y a j ñ a - V a r ā h a . As the notes on t h a t c h a p t e r (I.i.5) show, the concept of Yajña V a r ā h a is a c o n t i n u a t i o n of the Vedic tradition presented here in P u r ā n i c form. R ā m a , the son of D a ś a r a t h a , the 7th i n c a r n a t i o n of V i s n u is cursorily treated in a few verses (Il.iii.64. 192-197) recording his killing of R ā v a n a a n d good government for 10000 years. N o t a word a b o u t his defeat of P a r a ś u r ā m a though K r s n a is m a d e to predict it formerly (Il.iii.36.30-33). T h e a u t h o r of o u r P u r ā n a is an a r d e n t devotee of K r s n a or r a t h e r of the R ā d h ā cult. Even w h e n P a r a ś u r ā m a got the secret missiles from god Śiva, he is m a d e to go to Agastya a n d learn from h i m K r s n a ' s eulogy called Krsna-Premāmrta (the n e c t a r in the form of K r s n a ' s love). * W h e n P a r a ś u r ā m a recited the h y m n , K r s n a , the pastoral god w i t h a flute, manifested him­ self to P a r a ś u r ā m a * * ( T h e IX i n c a r n a t i o n of V i s n u favouring an a u d i a n c e to the VI i n c a r n a t i o n of the same god !) Paraśu­ r ā m a glorified K r s n a in V e d a n t i c terms applied to the B r a h m a n ( W . 15-24). K r s n a blessed h i m w i t h success i n his mission t o kill Sahasrārjuna who is an i n c a r n a t i o n of his disc S u d a r ś a n a a n d the slaughter of K s a t t r i y a s . He disappears promising h i m *Bd. P. II.iii.36. T h e h y m n is a list of 108 epithets ( W . 1 6 - 4 1 )of Krsna. » * O p . Cit. Ch. 3 7 .


liv

Brahmānda Purāna

to deprive of his m a r t i a l power in his incarnation as D ā ś a r a t h i Rāma* K r s n a a n d R ā d h ā are shown to be greater t h a n god Śiva a n d Pārvatī. W h e n Pārvatī threatened to leave the house d u e to Siva's inaction against P a r a ś u r ā m a , Śiva meditates a n d invokes Lord K r s n a w h o comes w i t h R ā d h ā . R ā d h ā is shown to have b r o u g h t a b o u t a reconciliation between Pārvatī a n d P a r a ś u r ā m a . * * R ā d h ā is not known to the authors of Harivarhśa a n d t h e Bhāga­ v a t a P u r ā n a . But the pastoral K r s n a , the L o r d of Go-loka (Cow's h e a v e n ) a n d of Gopīs (Cowherdesses) manifests himself w i t h R ā d h ā a n d S u d ā m a n . P a r a ś u r ā m a ' s eulogy o f R ā d h ā (Op. Cit. 43.8-9) especially the epithets u s e d : R&seśi (the chief figure, sovereign of R a s a d a n c e ) , rasikeśvari (Goddess of t h e aesthetes) a n d the m o t h e r of Ativirāf (extremely Superior b e i n g ) , the m o t h e r of the g r e a t Being in whose pores of body t h e cosmic eggs shine. These show t h a t R ā d h ā has a t t a i n e d the status of the high­ est deity in public m i n d . B u d d h a is n o t regarded as Visnu's i n c a r n a t i o n . T h e epithet is applied to god Śiva ( I l . i i i . 7 2 . 1 7 7 ) . M o r e i m p o r t a n t is the declaration of the identity of Śiva a n d Visnu, R ā d h ā a n d U m ā b y R ā d h ā herself: " Y o u ( U m ā ) a n d I are one. T h e r e is no difference between us. You ( U m ā ) are Visnu a n d I am Śiva w h o has duplicated in forms. In the h e a r t of Siva, Visnu has assumed your form a n d in the h e a r t of Visnu, Śiva has assumed my f o r m " . (Op. cit. 42. 48-49.) T h e Synthesis of Śaiva a n d Vaisnava cults was the mission of the P u r ā n a s a n d Bd. P. is not an exception. As c o m p a r e d w i t h t h e passages, K r s n a ' s biography in the description of V r s n i dynasty (Il.iii.71.195-265) is practically the same as in the Bh. P . , b u t our P u r ā n a notes one good act of K a m s a — H e did n o t kill N a n d a ' s d a u g h t e r who was brought as a substitute for K r s n a . He magnanimously says to Vasudeva, " J u s t as she is your d a u g h t e r , she is m i n e too. I w o n ' t kill h e r " . A n d the girl grew up in V r s n i family (II.3.72.219-220). •Op. Cit. 37.26-33. **0p.

Cit.

42.18-56.


lv

Introduction

O n e more point is the m e n t i o n of t h e V y ū h a theory. T h e four manifestations of S ā ñ k a r s a n a , V ā s u d e v a , P r a d y u m n a a n d Aniruddha. *

"Closely connected with the incarnations of Vi?nu is the struggle bet­ w e e n Suras and Asuras- 'Suras' were so called as they a c c e p t e d Surā (goddess w i n e ) w h e n she emerged while churning the ocean, 'Asuras' preferred to be dry teatotaller and did not accept her. H e n c e A-sura. Suras (gods) c o m m i t t e d u n g o d l y acts a n d Asuras showed super-human magnanimity. T h e first three c o m m o n rulers of both Suras and Asuras were Hiranyakaśipu, Bali a n d Prahlāda and they ruled for ten yugas ( I I . i i i . 7 2 . 8 8 - 9 2 ) . Our Purāna indicates that D e v a s and Asuras were cousin-tribes. " T h e r e was great friendship

between

the D e v a s and Asuras. For a full period of ten yugas, the universe was uninter­ rupted. T h e D e v a s and Asuras abided by the behest of Asura

Indras

(Il.iii.

7 2 . 6 9 ) . Hiranyakaśipu, Bali a n d Prahlāda w e r e the three Asura Indras ( N o t e the order of succession in Bd. P. (Op. Cit. 7 2 . 6 8 - 9 2 ) . But due to the mischief, fraud or aggression of Devas, twelve battles were fought

between them in the

V a r ā h a K a l p a and V i s n u ' s incarnation was involved in some. Sr. No. oj

Cause

the battle. I II

X a r a s i m h a and Hiranyakaśipu. V ā m a n a ' s fraud—Bali was cheated and deprived of his empire a n d confined to Pātāla.

III

Varāha.

IV

Churning of the nectar, Daityas cheated by V i s n u a s M o h i n i . Prah­ l ā d a was defeated by Indra.

V

T ā r a k ā m a y a b a t t l e — A b d u c t i o n of Brhaspati's wife T ā r ā by Candra. As Brhaspati's cause was espoused by Devas,

Asuras supported

C a n d r a — I n d r a killed V i r o c a n a . VI

Adi-baka. T h e conflict b e t w e e n Vasisjha a n d V i ś v ā m i t r a (But the sages only fought in the form of birds).

VII VIII

T h e fight for T r i p u r a — Ś i v a massacred Asuras. A n d h a k ā r a — D e v a s and m e n jointly defeated D a i t y a ,

Asura a n d

R ā k s a s a alliance. IX X

V r t r a — V i s n u j o i n e d Indra a n d killed V r t r a a n d his allies. Dhvaja—Vipracitti a n d his younger brother assumed Dhvaja form by M ā y ā — I n d r a penetrated a hundred thousand

Dhvajas

and

killed him. XI XII

H ā l ā h a l a — N o apparent cause. K i n g Raji surrounded b y the gods defeated D a i t y a s ( I l . i i i . 7 2 . 7 2 - 8 8 ) .


Ivi

Brahmānda Purāna

śāktism Although there is a big section of 40 chapters (IV.iii.5-44) called Lalitā Māhātmya appended to the Bd. P., it is apocryphal. T h e concluding verses of Ch. 4 of the Upasamhāra pāda ( I I I . i v . 4 . 41-73) state t h a t all the sages of N a i m i s ā r a n y a , the performers of the sacrificial sessions, w e n t to heaven, gives the genealogy of the teachers of the Bd. P. who h a n d e d down the T e x t a n d the Phala-Śruti — t h e m e r i t accruing from listening to the B d . P . — T h a t clearly shows t h a t the Bd. P. ended here. T h e section on Lalitā Māhātmya starts with a ne-wMañgalācarana (benedictory verses)and a new p a i r of interlocutors, a n d t h e contents—manifestation of Goddess Lalitā to kill the Asura Bhanda, her marriage with K ā m e ś v a r a (Śiva), glorification of the goddess M a h ā p a d m ā a n d K ā m ā k s ī etc.—show t h a t it is an i n d e p e n d e n t work. If Lalilā-māhātmya is treated as an integral p a r t of the Bd. P., Śakti-worship with all its T ā n t r i c details must have been prevalent at the time of the inclusion of the L a l i t ā - M ā h ā t m y a in Bd. P. It is not so m u c h of R ā d h ā b u t r a t h e r K r s n a cult (with its T a n trie aspect as in N P . Chs. 82-83) that is emphasized in Bd.P. (e.g. It is Bhakti in R ā d h ā ' s eulogy by P a r a ś u r ā m a I I . iii. 43.8.ff). [See T a n t r i s m a l s o ] . The Sun-worship T h e r e are references to the Sun-worship or propitiation of the Sun-god. T h u s Yājñavalkya ireturns—"vomits b a c k " — Yajurveda to his teacher V a i ś a m p ā y a n a , propitiates the Sungod who confers on Brahma-rāti (Yājñavalkya) Yajur-mantras, after assuming the form of a horse (I.ii.35. 23-26). H e n c e white Yajurveda is called Vājasaneyi Samhitā. T h e story of Satrājit receiving £>yāmantaka gem from the Sun-god ( I I . Hi.71.21-33) shows how generous the Sun-god is to his devotees. As in other P u r ā n a s , in the Bhuvana-Kośa p o r t i o n — i n Bd.P. there is mythical astronomy describing the position, dimen­ sions of the Sun-god, his chariot a n d -paraphernalia of gods, sages, G a n d h a r v a s , celestial damsels, serpents, demons, the twelve


Introduction

lvii

sun-gods presiding over each m o n t h , t h e different colours he assumes in each season, his function to b u r n down the Universe at the end of K a l p a . C a n we regard this m y t h i c a l astronomy as a p a r t of t h e Sun-worship, as we can say a b o u t it in the Bhavisya Purāna where M a g a Brahmins are found worshipping the Sun ? An Obscure cult T h e r e is an obscure cult called Godharma or t h e Cult of the Bull. In Il.iii.74.53-58 t h e Bull of god Śiva explains to sage D ī r g h a t a m a s : " W e do not distinguish between w h a t should or should n o t be e a t e n or d r u n k or w i t h w h o m one should go (co­ h a b i t ) . No sin is c o m m i t t e d by u s " . D ī r g h a t a m a s followed it a n d was cured of his blindness a n d fear of Age a n d d e a t h by S u r a b h i , t h e Divine Cow. He c a m e to be known as G a u t a m a as his T a m a s (blindness) was removed by a C o w . * T h i s is a crude description of the V r a t a poetically described by K ā l i d ā s a in R a g h u v a m ś a . ( I I . 1 . 2 5 . ) Non-Vedic religions T h e r e are indirect references to J a i n i s m , Buddhism K ā p ā l i k a s a n d Ajīvakas (called Ajīvas). T h e y a r e alllcalled nagnas ' n u d e s ' as they are not covered by the T r i n i t y of V e d a s (II.iii.14.34-36, 39-40). In the description of K a l i Age, t h e ochre-coloured (Buddhists), the nirgranthas ( J a i n s ) a n d K ā p ā l i ­ kas are bracketed with the " m e r c h a n t s " of the V e d a a n d holy places (1.2.31.65-66). T h e P u r ā n a strongly opposes a n i m a l sacrifices. In the T r e t ā Yuga sages declared to I n d r a t h a t the slaughter of animals in a sacrifice was n o t dharma. Hirhsā (Injury to a n i m a l s ) can never be dharma. Sacrifices are to be performed w i t h Seeds which a r e three years old ( u n p r o d u c t i v e ) " . W h e n king ' U p a r i c a r a ' (Heaven-moving) Vasu disagreed w i t h this principle of non­ injury, he fell down a n d sank to P ā t ā l a (1.2.30.9-32). T h i s is t h e U p ā n i s a d i c t h o u g h t - c u r r e n t a n d need n o t be traced to J a i n i s m or Buddhism. T h e institution of Bhiksus is not limited to J a i n s or Bud­ dhists so t h e daśalaksanaka dharma ' D h a r m a characterised by T e n * g a v ā hrta-tamāh so'tha G a u t a m a h samapadyata /

II.iii.74.94


Iviii

Brahmānda Purāna

rules of discipline' in 1.27.177-179 are m e a n t for B r a h m a n i c a l forest-hermits. It is not certain whether the anikitatā-vāda in I.ii.8.64 should be a t t r i b u t e d to Sañjaya Belatthiputra, although it can be taken as a brief unscientific statement of S y ā d v ā d a . T h e classification of living beings as Aupapattika, Māraka (III.iv.2.192-93) is c o m m o n to J a i n i s m a n d B r a h m a n i s m . But m u c h m o r e convincing evidence is regarding the derivation of the n a m e Bhārata from B h a r a t a 1 the son of ( J a i n T l r t h a ñ k a r a ) R s a b h a b o r n of N ā b h i andjMerudevī (1.2.14.59-62). V e d y a r d h a (1.2.15) is a hypersanskritisation of m o u n t V e y a d d h a m e t in J a i n Pkt. literature. But very little information is preserved a b o u t non-Vedic Section of this P u r ā n a . V.

Dharma-Śāstra—Ancient Lores—Science of Music

T h e m e n t i o n of a Bhavisyat P u r ā n a a n d quotations from P u r ā n a s on m a t t e r s p e r t a i n i n g to D h a r m a Śāstra in the Āpastamba Grhya Sutra(II.9.24.6; 1.6.19.13; 11,9.23.3-6) show t h a t materials of D h a r m a Śāstra came to be i n c o r p o r a t e d in P u r ā n a s since the 5 t h C e n t . B.C. 2 In my introductions to KP.p.xliv, N P . pp.52-53,1 p o i n t e d out how P u r ā n a s were looked u p o n as authorities on D h a r m a Śāstra by mediaeval N i b a n d h a writers. T h o u g h the special feature of D h a r m a Śāstra in Bd. P. m a y a p p e a r to be Ś r ā d d h a to which 879 verses (Il.iii.Chs. 9-20) have been devoted, there are some m o r e topics like the duties of different V a r n a s a n d Aśramas (I.ii.7.132-185; I.ii.29.89.90 I.ii.31), the denunciation of a n i m a l sacrifices (I.ii.30-16-48). O n e , however, wonders how this a t t i t u d e to ahimsā is to be recon­ ciled w i t h t h e promised fruits for non-vegetarian articles of food to be served at Ś r ā d d h a (Bd.P. 19.2-11). But Bd.P. is not the only work which prescribes such diet in Ś r ā d d h a . M a n u III.267-72, Yājñavalkya 1.258-60, M b h . Anuśāsana C h . 88, Kātyāyana Śrāddha-SŪtra (Kantfikā 7-8), KP.II.20.40-42, M t . P.17.31-35 do the same a n d specify the period Pitrs are gratified with the flesh of a p a r t i c u l a r a n i m a l .

1. 2.

Tasmāt tu Bhāratam varsam lasya nāmnā vidur budhāh / Intro, t o N P . pp. 6-8.

I.ii. 14.62a..


Introduction

lix

T h e topic of Ś r ā d d h a is so comprehensively discussed t h a t it covers the following topics of D h a r m a - Ś ā s t r a viz. H o l y places of Pilgrimage (II.iii.Gh. 13), Dana (ibid.Ch.)6), Tithis a n d Naksattras (ibid. Chs. 17 & 18), t h o u g h the emphasis is on its suitability to Ś r ā d d h a . As I have discussed these topics in details in my a n n o t a t i o n s giving cross references to various works on D h a r m a Śāstra I do not r e p e a t t h e m h e r e . But I m a y state t h a t all the details of Ś r ā d d h a such as relative superiority of people p a r t a k i n g of t h e feast in Ś r ā d d h a (II.iii.9.66-76) a m o n g w h o m Yogins have a special place of h o n o u r (19.29, 49-52, II.iii.9.70; m e t a l pots to be used in S r ā d d h a , offering oīPinolas, Agni karana 'establishment of fire' (ibid.ch. 11) rites of purification, distinguishing features of a p p r o p r i a t e a n d i n a p p r o p r i a t e features in the r i t u a l of Ś r ā d d h a ; eschewing the sight of naked ascetics, atheists etc, (Op. Cit. C h . 1 4 ) the test of Brahmins a t t e n d i n g Ś r ā d d h a (ibid ch. 15) etc. a r e found practically the same in Smrti a n d P u r ā n a works (see notes on the various c h a p t e r s ) . T h e classification of Pitrs into seven as in V ā . P . 7 3 , P d . P . Srsti 9.2-4 shows a later accretion. T h e superstition of foodpollution by the sight of non-Vedic ascetics Sāńkhyas, Śaivas like K ā r u s a s etc. (19.43-44)is found in Gautama Dh.S. 15.25-28, M a n u 111.239-42, KP.II.22.34-35 VP.III.16.12-14 to m e n t i o n a few. T h e r e is some contradiction in the tests of the B r ā h m a n a invited for Ś r ā d d h a (ch. 15) where Bd.P. instructs t h a t Brah­ mins should not be tested (V.7) a n d also gives qualifications of invitation-worthy Brahmins. It is not understood w h y Orissa, T e l a ń g a n a a n d N o r t h S i n d h were regarded as unfit for performing Ś r ā d d h a (14.313 3 ) . N o t t h a t the contradictions m e n t i o n e d above are limited to Bd.P. (vide annotations on the relevant topics). T h a t is a charac­ teristic of literature of growth (like P u r ā n a s ) where, due to lack of critical editing, b o t h old a n d new portions a r e allowed to r e m a i n despite their non-agreement. In spite of these, Bd.P. was looked u p o n as an a u t h o r i t y on D h a r m a Śāstra. F o r example, Mitāksarā on Yājñavalkya I I I . 3 0 9 a n d Smrticandrikā I.p.l 18 quote Bd.P. to support the purificatory rite of b a t h i n g along w i t h one's dress if one h a p p e n s


lx

Brahmānda Purāna

to t o u c h Śaiva, P ā ś u p a t a or Lokāyata (Materialists). A p a r ā r k a quotes 75 verses from Bd.P. (out of t h e m 43 are on Ś r ā d d h a . ) Smrti Candrikā quotes a b o u t 50 verses on Ahnika a n d Ś r ā d d h a .

Ancient Lores in Bd.P. T h e a u t h o r of t h e B d . P . is n o t exact in information a b o u t our a n c i e n t works: T h u s (i) t h e r e is a difference in the total n u m b e r of M a n t r a s in different V e d a s as stated in Bd.P. I.ii.3570-81 a n d t h e a c t u a l V e d i c Texts. Name of the Veda

1.

Rgveda

2.

Sāmaveda

Total No. as per Bd.P.

8635

8014

Total No. in the Svādhyāya Mana'ala (Satavalekar) edition. 10552 (The same in C V S [Carana Vyūha Sūtra] 1810

(CVS supports ( T h e only 75 Sāman) this) 3.

Adhvaryava (Black Yajurveda)

4.

Vājasaneyī (White Yajurveda)

5.

Atharva Veda

in these 12000

1900 (Kātyāyana supports this) 8880 w h e n Śukriya a n d K h i l a Mantras are added). 6026

12330 3988

5977

2. In statements about Rsis (Sages), their lineage, t h e Śākhās (Branches of the V e d a s ) , there are a n u m b e r of discre­ pancies between Bd.P. a n d C V S . (vide a n n o t a t i o n s on C h a p t e r s 32-35). T h e uncritical n a t u r e of t h e text can be a cause for some, b u t t h e n u m b e r of discrepancies is too large to be explained t h a t way.


lxi

Introduction 3.

Brāhmana Texts

O u t of the ten different characteristics of t h e B r ā h m a ń a Texts, Bd.P. I.ii.34.63-64 explains Purākrti—'a precedent, an instance w h e r e a n o t h e r did something of t h e same kind', a n d Purā-kalpa ' w h a t h a p p e n e d in the past ages, changing t h e m e a n ­ ing after considering the context.' 4.

Mimāmsā

O n P ū r v a m ī m ā m s ā S ū t r a I I . 1.33, S a h a r a quotes Bd.P. I.ii.33.47-48 as the characteristics or function of B r ā h m a n a s * . In Bd.P. 1.2.32.31.22 we find m e n t i o n of Ayurveda, Jyotisa, Arthaśāstra, H e t u - Ś ā ś t r a (Science of Logic.) Science of Music1 T h e r e are seven notes (Svaras) viz. Sadja (Sa), Rsabha (Ri), GāndhSra (Ga), Madhyama (Ma), Pañcama (Pa), Dhaivata (Dha) a n d Nisāda (Ni). T h e r e are three Gramas (basic scales). Grāma m e a n s t h e g r o u p of seven notes. T h e P u r ā n a s m e n t i o n three Gramas viz. Saq*ja-grAma, Madhyama-grāma a n d Gandhāragrāma—The Sa-scale, t h e Ma-scale a n d the Ga-scale. These have Sa, Ma a n d Ga as the starting notes. T h u s the Sa-scale would have notes : Sa, Ri, Dha, Ni. T h e Ma-scale would h a v e the notes Ma, Pa, Dha, Ni, Sa, Ri, Ga. T h e Ga-scale which fell i n t o disuse — " w e n t to h e a v e n " — w o u l d have Ga, Ma, Pa, Dha, Ni, Sa, Ri. T h e n u m b e r of Śrutis (the Micro-tones) in the Saptaka fixed by B h a r a t a is 22. T h e ^ruii-intervals were distributed in t h e notes as follows : Sa scale : 4 Sa, 3 Ri, 2 Ga, 4 Ma, 4 Pa, 3 Dha, 2 Ni— 22 Ma scale : 4 Ma, 3 Pa, 4 Dha, 2Ni, 4 Sa, 3 Ri, 2 Ga—22

*

Hetur nirvacanarh nindā praiarhiā samiayo vidhih / Parakriyā

Parākalpo

Vyavadhārana-Kalpani

Upamānam daSaite vai vidhayo Brāhmanasya lu \\ \.

T h e n o t e is based on the translation a n d annotations of Ch. 61.29-35

a n d C h . 62 by Prof. Dr. G. H. Tarlekar. T h e Sk. text of Bd.P. corrupt. P r o f Tarlekar has d e v o t e d his life to the

study

is extremely

of a n c i e n t

music. W i t h the help o f V ā . P . a n d other texts o n a n c i e n t I n d i a n

Indian

Music

he

has tried to e m e n d a n d translate these verses- I am grateful to Prof. Tarlekar for his h e l p in the matter.


Brahmānda Purāna

Ixii

MSrchanā was the g r a d u a l ascent and descent of the seven notes of the basic scale. As the Murchanās started from each note of the scale, there were seven Murchanās of each scale. T h u s the murchanas of the three gramas n u m b e r e d twentyone. Tana is like Mūrchanā in which one or two specific notes are d r o p p e d . W h e n one specific svara (note)is dropped it is called Sadava Tāna (one consisting of six notes) a n d when two specific notes are dropped, it is called Auduva Tāna ( O n e consisting of five n o t e s ) . According to P u r ā n a s , there were twenty Tānas of Madhyama-grāma, fourteen of Sadja-grāma a n d fifteen of Gandhara grāma. T h u s the n u m b e r of Tānas of three gramas is fortynine—in Pre-Bharata (Nātya Śāstra) State of I n d i a n Music. T h e P u r a n i c concept of Tana is different from t h a t of the present day. T h e T e x t enumerates the names of 31 Tānas only in their corrupt forms, b u t they do not throw any light on their n a t u r e . But they disclose the names of two ancient authors on Music. Bhlmasena (with reference to the Tāna Nāgarapńyā—a form reconstructed from the obscure form Nāgarātānayapriyāh in the text, a n d N ā r a d a . Very obscure names of murchanās a n d their presiding deities a r e given (in 61.43b-53b). O n l y a critical edition of the text will help to clarify it. Alankaras in Music1 As the whole c h a p t e r on Alańkāras (Ch.62) is full of c o r r u p t readings a n d obscurities, readings from C h . 87 of V ā . P . a r e taken as the basis a n d Sañgita Ratnākara, t h o u g h m u c h later in d a t e t h a n Bd.P. or V ā . P . , is used as it preserved some of the P u r ā n i c traditions (But it was found to be of little u s e ) . Alańkāras are to be spoken of along with the Varnas (move­ m e n t s of notes such 'steady', 'ascending' e t c . ) . T h e Varnas are (1) Sthāyin (Sa, Sa, Sa), (2) Ārohin (Sa, ri, ga etc.) (3) Avarohin (Ni, dha, pa) a n d (4) Sañcārin (Sa ri sa ri ga etc.) T h e a u t h o r enumerates four alańkāras such as Sthāpani, Pramāda, Apramāda, promises to explain t h e m b u t the explanations are n o t found in t h e text. T h e t r e a t m e n t is very scrappy a n d obscure. He is however right w h e n he emphasizes the use of the right Alańkāra 1.

Based on II.iii.62.


Introduction

Ixiii

at the right place (62.24-26). T h e a u t h o r gives the local varieties of songs such as M a d r a k a , A p a r ā n t i k a (62.31-36). About Tolas, Bd.P. gives two even measures (caturasra— of four beats a n d eight Mātrās) a n d Tryasra—of four beats a n d six Mātrās). Lastly, he mentions three Vrttis viz. Citrā, Vrtti a n d Dakfinā. T h e Vrttis are styles of r e n d e r i n g songs with a c c o m p a n i m e n t . In Citrā, the music of stringed instrument was p r o m i n e n t a n d the song subservient. In Daksinā, the song was p r o m i n e n t a n d instru­ m e n t a t i o n subservient a n d in the Vrtti, b o t h were employed equally (vide Nātya śāstra (Baroda)Vol. IV, p p . 100-101, Sańgita Ratnākara V.10-16 a n d VI.165-167). VI.

Religion and Philosophy in Bd. P.

Vedānta : In t h e Mañgalācarana (benedictory verses at t h e beginning of the B d . P . ) , the a u t h o r pays obeisance to the omnipresent Selfb o r n Deity called L o r d H a r i who in his threefold form represen­ ting rajas, sattva a n d tamas, creates, sustains a n d annihilates t h e U n i v e r s e . 1 He possesses three gunas a n d is yet devoid of t h e m . He is endowed w i t h unparalleled knowledge, d e t a c h m e n t , s u p e r h u m a n power a n d d h a r m a . Resorting to Yoga he created the world of mobile a n d immobile beings (I.i.1.1-7). L a t e r the creation of the Universe from Prakrti is called a Vivarta (of B r a h m a n ) a n d not Parinama of the Sāñkhya (I.i.3.24). T h e B r a h m a n has neither beginning nor end. It is u n b o r n , subtle, incomprehensible, beyond b o t h Sat and A-sat (existence a n d n o n existence) ( I . i . 3 . 9 - I I ) . It is the source of the world. In concluding the P u r ā n a (III.iv.4.71-73) he pays h o m a g e to t h a t P r i m o r d i a l Deity whose description is like t h a t of the P u r u s a in the Purusa-Sūkta ( R V . X - 9 0 ) . It is t h e P u r a n i c way of presenting t h e V e d ā n t a . Śāńkhya : K a p i l a , the founder of the Sāńkhya school is said to be one of t h e Seven Sons of god B r a h m a a n d a b r o t h e r of Āsuri a n d 1.

V i s n u assumes these forms. I.i.4.6-8.


Ixiv

Brahmānda Purāna

P a ñ c a ś i k h a — o t h e r a n c i e n t teachers of this school a n d K a p i l a ' s followers (III.iv.2.272-274). He is called Paramarsi (I.ii.32.86) as intellectually he comprehends w h a t is still unmanifest, simul­ taneously w i t h its manifestation. T h i s epithet is preceded by the description of the evolution of the Universe (ibid W. 71-76) which is the same as in I.i.Ch.s 3, 4 & 5. B d . P . uses īśvarakrsna's terms a n d process of evolution of the Universe in the Sāńkhya Kārikā e.g. the state of equilibrium of G u n a s , the creation of Mahat, Ahamkāra (Cosmic E g o ) , the elements (Bhūtas , SenseO r g a n s b u t it posits the presence a n d power of V i s n u for this, while ī ś v a r a k r s n a is an atheist. T h e G u n a s — S a t t v a , Rajas a n d T a m a s are personified by Visnu, B r a h m a n a n d R u d r a . This is Theistic Sāńkhya probably posterior to I ś v a r a k r s n a (circa 300 A . D . ) . Toga Yoga as a philosophy is n o t directly discussed in the Bd. P., b u t the i m p o r t a n c e of Yoga is stressed everywhere. Visnu crea­ ted the world t h r o u g h his power of Yoga |(I.i.1.1-7 . In inviting B r ā h m a n a s for Ś r ā d d h a , a Yogi has a iprecedence over learned B r ā h m a n a s (II.iii.9.70; 15-25). A guest at t h e time of Ś r ā d d h a should be received as 'masters of Yoga move in different forms to guide people in D h a r m a ' (ibid V. 9 ) . T h e p a t h of Yoga t h r o u g h P r ā n ā y ā m a , P r a t y ā h ā r a etc. is r e g a r d e d as ' u n d o u b t e d l y the means to M o k s a ' (Il.iii. 13.138-139) Bhakti In Bd.P.II.iii.34.37-41, we are told t h a t d u e to lack of Bhakti, P a r a ś u r ā m a was u n a b l e t o m a s t e r the K r s n a - K a v a c a . T h e r e Bhakti is classified as follows: (i)

Uttamā— T h e best one. T h e devotees in this class are Śiva, N ā r a d a , Śuka, Ambarisa, R a n t i deva, M ā r u t i , Bali, Bibhisana, P r a h l ā d a , U d d h a v a a n d last b u t not the least Gopīs of Braj. M a n y of these Bhaktas are in­ cluded in Nārada-Bhakli-Sūtra 83 b u t t h a t Bhakti-Sutra rates t h e Bhakti of Gopls as the Sinceremost.


Introduction

lxv

(ii) Madhyamā: T h e middle class. Vasistha a n d o t h e r sages, M a n u a n d the like of h i m a n d Paraśurāma. (iii) Prākrta—Common. Of ordinary people. or K a n i s t h ā (lowest) Tantra T h e a n a c h r o n i s m of bringing in K r s n a (and. R ā d h ā ) in P a r a ś u r ā m a legend shows its interpolatory n a t u r e . But it is t h e T a n t r i c cult in which K r s n a a n d R ā d h ā are used for Mantra, Kavaca etc. t h a t is i m p o r t a n t here. God B r a h m a advises P a r a ś u ­ r ā m a to secure t h e m from god Śiva (II.iii.32.37-39). T h e whole c h a p t e r (ibid 33) is T a n t r i c . T h e M a n t r a is t h e core of T a n t r a - Ś ā s t r a a n d K r s n a - M a n t r a of 10 syllables given to P a r a ś u r ā m a is : Gopijanavallabhāya Svāhā T h e sage of this M a n t r a is Sadāśiva; Pañkti is the m e t r e ; K r s n a is the deity. A n d its utilization is for the achievement of everything (33.3-4). T h e M a n t r a is followed by Kavaca (Protective c h a r m with mystical syllables) called Trailokya-Vijaya (33.6-27) imploring Lord K r s n a to protect different parts of the body everywhere, u n d e r all circumstances. Accompanied with mystic syllables like Om Hrim a n u m b e r of epithets of K r s n a express his close association w i t h R ā d h ā . Later, a Stotra, called Krsnāmrta Stotra, a series of 108 epithets of K r s n a reported to have been recited by Śesa, is n a r ­ r a t e d by Agastya to P a r a ś u r ā m a (36.16-50). T h e epithets cover all the episodes in the life of K r s n a a n d t h e i m p o r t a n c e of this Stotra is described at the end of t h a t C h a p t e r . P a r a ś u r ā m a recited the Stotra a n d when K r s n a manifest­ ed himself, he devoutly prayed h i m w i t h a n o t h e r Stotra (37. 15-24). W h e n L o r d Śiva implored K r s n a t o appease t h e w r a t h of goddess U m ā at hacking down t h e tusk of G a n e ś a by P a r a ś u ­ r ā m a , b o t h R ā d h ā a n d K r s n a a p p e a r a n d bring a b o u t a p e a c e , P a r a ś u r ā m a is shown to praise t h e m in V e d a n t i c terms i n t e r -


Ixvi

Brahmānda Purāna

mixed w i t h P u r ā h i c episodes (II.ii.43, W . 8 - 1 0 ) . These Stotras m a y not be T a n t r i c , b u t they show the influence of R ā d h ā cult. Gf. N P . I . C h s . 80, 8 1 , 82. T h e section on Lalitā Māhātmya starts with a new Mańgalācarana (benedictory verses) a n d a new pair of interlocutors, a n d t h e contents—manifestation of Goddess Lalitā to kill the Asura B h a n d a , h e r m a r r i a g e w i t h K ā m e ś v a r a (Śiva), glorification of the goddess M a h ā p a d m ā a n d K ā m ā k s ī etc.—show t h a t it is an i n d e p e n d e n t work. But if Lalitā-Māhātmya is treated as an integral p a r t of t h e Bd.P., Sakti-worship w i t h all its T a n t r i c details must have been prevalent at the time of inclusion of the L a l i t ā - M ā h ā t m y a in Bd.P. Other points A few m o r e points are remarkable : (i) Ahimsa—Though animal sacrifices are c o n d e m n e d on the ground of Ahirñsā (non-injury) which is regarded as ' T h e gate-way to D h a r m a ' (I.ii.30.35) arid though non-retaliation is r e c o m m e n d e d for sages aspiring for Moksa (II.iii.32.9.-12) it is n o t a blind Ahimsā. For Bd.P. (I.ii.36.188) states " I f by killing one, m a n y can lead a h a p p y life, there is no sin, major or m i n o r , i n killing h i m " . (ii) Non-covetousness : T h e tirade against Trsnā (covetousness) in the t r a d i t i o n a l verses ascribed to K i n g Yayāti (Il.iii. 68.96-103) need not be a t t r i b u t e d to Buddhism as this revulsion is expressed i n M b h . Vana 2-36, Śānti 174-46 a n d in other P u r ā n a s . (iii) Free-Will and determination : Bd.P. (I.ii.8.61-62) raises t h e p o i n t w h e t h e r one succeeds in one's efforts d u e to his Daiva (destiny), effort or Svabhāva a n d decides t h a t a combination of Daiva a n d h u m a n efforts yields fruit. Cf. M b h . Śānti 238.4-5 a n d M t . P . 220.8 for similar views.

VII

The Paraśurāma Legend

T h e Legend of P a r ā ś u r ā m a a n d his exploits in killing ' t h e t h o u s a n d - a r m e d ' K ā r t t a v ī r y a Arjuna a n d 'de-Ksattrising the e a r t h ' twentyone times, is a favourite topic of Purāna-writers as can be seen from t h e B h . P . I X . l 5 & 16, P d . P. V I . 241, M t .


lxvii

Introduction

P. 43, 44 Sk. P. (Revā K h a n d a 2 1 8 ) . T h e legend deserves special a t t e n t i o n as o u r P u r ā n a has devoted 37 chapters (chs. 21-58) of the Upodghāta Pāda a n d shown his connection w i t h S a g a r a , K i n g of Ayodhyā a n d e n c o u n t e r w i t h R ā m a , t h e son of D a ś a r a t h a of the same Ayodhyā house ( t h o u g h b o t h Sagara a n d R ā m a (circa 2350 B . C . ) 1 were born m a n y generations l a t e r ) a n d with the r e c l a m a t i o n of land from the Sea from G o k a r n a ( i n ' K a r n a t a k ) to C a p e C o m o r i n , in the South. T h e basic incident of the legend took place in the hoary a n t i q u i t y (circa B.C. 2 5 5 0 ) 2 a n d there is no u n a n i m i t y in the a c c o u n t of the P u r ā n a s . 3 T h e b a r e facts of the case a p p e a r as follows : (1)

J a m a d a g n i ' s royal reception to K i n g K ā r t t a v ī r y a .

(2)

R a i d o n J a m a d a g n i ' s hermitage a n d m a n h a n d l i n g him by officers of Kārttavīrya.

(3)

Paraśurāma's

(4)

As a revenge, K ā r t t a v ī r y a ' s sons killed J a m a d a g n i .

(5)

T w e n t y o n e battles in which H a i h a y a allies.

killing

Kārttavīrya

in

retaliation.

P a r a ś u r ā m a defeated

O u r P u r ā n a magnifies P a r a ś u r ā m a a s a n epic hero. T h e story begins after the Śrāddha-Kalpa (procedure of performing Ś r ā d d h a ) as follows : W i t h the permission of his father, P a r a ś u r ā m a visits his grandfather Rcīka a n d t h e n his great-grandfather a n d so on till he visits Bhrgu the founder of his family. Bhrgu advises h i m to p r o p i t i a t e Lord Śiva a n d o b t a i n from h i m his missiles (Ch. 2 1 ) . Accordingly P a r a ś u r ā m a performs p e n a n c e on the H i m a l a y a s to propitiate Śiva (Ch. 2 2 ) . Śiva, disguised as a h u n t e r tests P a r a ś u r ā m a a n d is satisfied. He imparts the knowledge of secret missiles to P a r a ś u r ā m a for killing d e m o n s , b u t advises h i m to go on pilgrimage a n d perform p e n a n c e to a t t a i n ability to h a n d l e these weapons (Chs. 23 a n d 24) P a r a ś u r ā m a kills a tiger in a H i m a l a y a n cave a n d saves a B r a h m i n boy safe a n d u n i n j u r e d 1. 2. 3

V e d i c Age, p. 2 9 2 . Ibid, p . 2 8 3 . S e e below : W a s Karttavirya a villain ?


lxviii

Brakmānda Purāna

a n d hence the boy is n a m e d 'Akrtavrana'. He becomes his p e r m a ­ n e n t companion. Both of t h e m r e t u r n to J a m a d a g n i ' s hermitage ( R a m a ' s h o m e ) (Ch. 2 5 ) . K ā r t t a v ī r y a of H a i h a y a dynasty visits J a m a d a g n i ' s h e r m i ­ tage a n d gets a royal reception a n d comfortable night-halt to all his men a n d officers d u e to the power of J a m a d a g n i ' s cow ( K ā m a d h e n u ) . On his d e p a r t u r e , t h e H a i h a y a king is insti­ gated by his minister C a n d r a g u p t a to confiscate the K ā m a d h e n u . While P a r a ś u r ā m a is away, C a n d r a g u p t a r e t u r n s a n d in t h e scuffle t h a t follows J a m a d a g n i is killed. T h e K ā m a d h e n u flies away in the sky. C a n d r a g u p t a returns w i t h the calf to the k i n g (Chs. 26-29). P a r a ś u r ā m a ' s r e t u r n a n d R e n u k ā ' s l a m e n t a t i o n beating her breast twenty-one times. P a r a s u r ā m a ' s vow to annihilate Ksattriyas twentyone times. Bhrgu visits the h e r m i t a g e a n d revives J a m a d a g n i . (From Bhrgu's visit a n d resuscitation of J a m a d a g n i to the e n d of C h . 39, the Bd. P. adds new m a t e r i a l (out of which some is anachronistic, n o t found in older P u r ā n a s ) . P a r a ś u r ā m a consults god B r a h m a a n d discusses the strategy to kill H a i h a y a . B r a h m a directs h i m to god Śiva. P a r a ś u r ā m a approaches Śiva, propitiates him a n d gets the secret of the perfect missile (Chs. 31-32). T h e protective m a n t r a (Kavaca) is called Trailokya-Vijaya (conquest of the three worlds) (Ch. 3 3 ) . T h e story of the m a l e a n d female deer illustrating the fruit of the h y m n called Krsnapremamrta (Ch. 3 4 ) , P a r a ś u r ā m a goes to Agastya's h e r m i t a g e a n d listens from h i m the h y m n Krsna-Premamrta (Chs. 35-36). K r s n a , the future 8th incarnation of Visnu, manifests himself to P a r a ś u r ā m a (the 6th incarnation of Visnu, a n d orders h i m to annihilate Ksattriyas 21 times a n d in the 2 4 t h T r e t ā Yuga, K r s n a will i n c a r n a t e as R ā m a (the 7th incarnation of V i s n u ) in R a g h u family w i t h his 4 Vyūhas a n d deprive P a r a ś u r ā m a of his divine power. Bhārgava sends a challenge to K ā r t t a v ī r y a a n d kills h i m b u t he, being an i n c a r n a t i o n of the S u d a r ś a n a discus of Visnu, reassumes his original form (Chs. 36-40). After carrying out his vow P a r a ś u r ā m a goes to Śiva to report his exploits b u t is prevented by Ganeśa to enter, as Śiva a n d Pārvatī were taking rest. P a r a ś u r ā m a strikes G a n e ś a w i t h his axe a n d cuts his tusk. Pārvatī strongly complains against this.


lxix

Introduction

to Śiva a n d w a n t s to leave for her father's house b u t is concili­ a t e d by R ā d h ā . R ā d h a is eulogised by P a r a ś u r ā m a . (This shows t h e p r e d o m i n a n c e of R ā d h ā - c u l t w h e n this p a r t of the Bd. P. was i n t e r p o l a t e d despite its a n a c h r o n i c i m p o r t ) . R e t u r n i n g to his father's h e r m i t a g e , P a r a ś u r ā m a reportes his revenge on K ā r t t a v ī r y a . J a m a d a g n i advises h i m to perform p e n a n c e for twelve years in a t o n e m e n t for his blood-shed. P a r a ś u r ā m a de­ parts a n d in his absence sons of K ā r t t a v ī r y a kill J a m a d a g n i a n d R e n u k ā too dies heart-broken. After completing his p e n a n c e for Twelve Years P a r a ś u r ā m a learns how his father was killed. He recalls his divine charioteer a n d advances against H a i h a y a s , K ā r t t a v ī r y a ' s son Vītihotra hides a n d saves his life. P a r a ś u r ā m a repeats the slaughter of Ksattriyas twenty-one times. In K u r u ksetra, he fills five tanks with K s a t t r i y a blood a n d performs Ś r ā d d h a of his Pitrs. His m a n e s a p p e a r in t h e sky, c o m m a n d h i m to desist from blood-shed a n d perform p e n a n c e . P a r a ś u ­ r ā m a (though u n m a r r i e d a n d u n a n o i n t e d as a king) performs a Horse-Sacrifice (Haya-medha II.iii.47.45-53) a n d gives to K a ś y a p a all the e a r t h except M a h e n d r a M o u n t a i n reserved for his residence. Thereafter, he quietly performs p e n a n c e there (Chs. 41-43). T h e Sagara episode (Chs. 44-50)intervenes here as follows: After P a r a ś u r ā m a ' s r e t i r e m e n t , H a i h a y a s organise them­ selves a n d in alliance w i t h warlike tribes like śakas, H ū n a s a n d o t h e r s they assail Bāhu the king of Ayodhyā, the ally of Bhārgavas. Bāhu flies a n d dies n e a r Aurva's (Bhārgava's ) h e r m i ­ tage * T h i s intervention of Sagara episode is for explaining w h y P a r a ś u r ā m a r e t u r n s to active life a n d reclaims the land from the Sea. P a r a ś u r ā m a is a p p r o a c h e d by B r ā h m a n a s of G o k a r n a as, d u e to the excavation of the e a r t h by Sagara's sons, the Sea engulfed a n d drowned t h e holy place. P a r a ś u r ā m a accompanies t h e m a n d requests t h e Sea-god to recede a n d vacate the holy place G o k a r n a . V a r u n a , t h e Sea-god, does not respond. Paraśu­ r ā m a angrily fixes an arrow to his bow to evaporate the whole ocean. T h e n only V a r u n a appears a n d concedes to vacate. •In fact it was a fight for the control of Indo-Gangetic

plain

kings of the north, the allies of Bhārgavas a n d the H a i h a y a kings.

between


Ixx

Brahmānda Purāna

P a r a ś u r ā m a takes his ladle a n d facing the n o r t h throws it a n d it goes a n d forms the śūrpāraka T ī r t h a (Nālā-Sopārā in T h a n a District of M a h a r a s h t r a ) . T h u s P a r a ś u r ā m a reclaims a strip of land six h u n d r e d Yojanas in l e n g t h (Chs. 57-58). 1 As compared w i t h older P u r ā n a s , this legend of Paraśu­ r ā m a brings in m a n y new elements (as recorded a b o v e ) . T h e sources of these new extra episodes are obscure. But the legend of P a r a ś u r ā m a as amplified in the Bd. P. becomes the source of newer versions in later P u r ā n i c works like the Sahyādri Khania, Datta Purāna, Kerala-Māhātmya a n d the like. Some works like Paraśurama-Kalpasūtra, veda are a t t r i b u t e d to h i m .

Jamadagnya-dhanur-

T h e P a r a ś u r ā m a legend raises a few problems of historical imp or t a n ce . We have to grope for the answer, as P a r a ś u r ā m a probably belongs to the 3rd m i l l e n i u m B.C. 2 We shall try to ascertain the facts which could be d e d u c e d from the conflicting Purānic evidence: (1)

Who were the Bhargavas ?

T h e n a m e Bhrgu ( G K . Phrug us) leads one to believe that they came from Phrygia in West Asia. 3 This migration must have taken place before the Vedic period. T h e Vedas credit the Bhrgus to have brought the fire from the heaven a n d that they were performers of Soma-Sacrifice. 4 T h e y seem to be a m a r t i a l people who participated in the famous Dāśarājña w a r ( R V . V I I . 1 8 . 6 ) . T h e y explored the technique of the use of fire in war, as a Bhārgava sage Aurva is said to have been dissuaded by his Pitrs (probably elderly people of his c l a n ) to desist from per­ fecting his fire-missile. 5 T h e y were advanced in medicine a n d 1.

V i d e Pargiter A I H T

(Ancient

Indian

Historical

tradition),

pp.

197-200. 2. pp.

C. 2 5 5 0 — 2 3 5 0 B.C. is regarded as Paraśurāma period in Vedic Age,

283-288. 3.

A . J . Karandikar states that R o m a n s were a Bhārgava

people w h o

migrated to the W e s t after the fall of T r o y — v i d e Mahābhāratācī P&rśvabhūmi) • Intro, pp. 2-6. 4.

Macdonnel—Keith—Vedic Index, vide reference to Bhrgu and other

Bhargavas. 5.

M b h . Adi.

178.14-22.


lxxi

Introduction

surgery a n d hence the Sañjlvani Vidyā ( T h e lore of re-suscitating the d e a d ) is a t t r i b u t e d to t h e m . Śukra, a Bhārgava p r e c e p t o r of Asuras, is credited to have been restoring the ' d e a d ' Asuras to life a n d gods sent K a c a , the son of their preceptor Brhaspati, to learn t h a t lore from h i m . 1 O u r text (Bd.P.) records t h a t Bhrgu brought back to life J a m a d a g n i (II.iii.30.57-58). Some of t h e m were A t h a r v a n priests. M a n u , a Bhārgava was a law­ giver. T h e y were experts in arts a n d crafts as they are m e n t i o n e d as chariot-buildjers 2 . T h e word 'Bhārgava' came to m e a n a handicraftsman, a potter, 3 archer, a r c h i t e c t — A n d we c a n ' t presume t h a t all of t h e m could be B r ā h m a n a s . T h e y were on the coast of Gujarat at the time of P a r a ś u ­ r ā m a , as his father is associated w i t h Bhrgukaccha (Broach) from which they migrated to Madhya-deśa due to the pressure of H a i h a y a s 4 .

(2) Was Paraśurama a Brāhmana ? N o b o d y has raised this point. But in Mbh.Adi.58.5-6, we are told t h a t when all Ksattriyas were slaughtered by Paraśu­ r ā m a , K s a t t r i y a ladies went to Brāhmanas a n d the children b o r n from t h e m were the Ksattriyas of the new generation. 8 If this matriarchical system was then the accepted custom, J a m a d a g n i , the son of a K s a t t r i y a Princess must be regarded as a K s a t t r i y a . He m a r r i e d R e n u k ā , a K s a t t r i y a Princess of Ayodhyā a n d P a r a ś u r ā m a is a full-blooded K s a t t r i y a a n d not a B r ā h m a n a at all. T h e story of Rcīka's wife ( J a m a d a g n i ' s K s a t t r i y a m o t h e r ) eating up a portion of Caru charged with a specific mantra

1.

Op. Cit. 76.12-18.

2.

RV.IV.16.20.X-39.141.

3.

M b h . Adi.

4.

Pargiter, A I H T . ch. X V I I .

5.

190.47,191.1.

tadā nihksattriye loke Bhārgavena krte sati / B r ā h m a n ā n Ksattriya rājan sutārthinyo' b h i c a k r a m u h " tebhyaśca lebhire garbhara Ksattriyas tāh Sahasraśah / tatah susuvire rājan K?attriyān viravattarān // —Mbh.

Adi.

58.5-6.


Ixxii

Brahmānda Purāna 1

m e a n t for Rcīka's mother-in-law, the queen of K a n o u j , is obvi­ ously intended as an apologetic explanation of the m a r t i a l c h a r a c t e r of P a r a ś u r ā m a , though a B r a h m i n . T h e fact is t h a t the Patriarchical system was well-established in t h e days of M b h . But to justify the refrain in the old ballad on P a r a ś u r ā m a (which the M b h — a Bhārgava version—assimilated) tri-sapta-krtvah vasudhām krtvā nihksattriyām Prabhuh

/

— M b h . Śānti 49.63. the K s a t t r i y a ladies were said to have been constrained to a d o p t the Niyoga m e t h o d for the continuation of their families. To credit a m a n w i t h span of active military leadership for twentyone generations is historically absurd. A n d it shows t h e hollowness of the refrain, if it is taken literally to be t r u e . A n d a com­ plete genocide of Ksattriyas is not implied by the P u r ā n a s as shown below : T h e m a i n point is t h a t P a r a ś u r ā m a was r e g a r d e d as a B r ā h m a n a by the M b h . a n d P u r ā n a s which took for granted the p a t r i a r c h i c a l system. (3) Was Kārttavirya Arjuna a Villain ? N o . He was the greatest K i n g of the N a r m a d ā region. Even t h e M b h . w h i c h is supposed to have been influenced (revised ?) by Bhargavas 2 states t h a t he was a pious king, res­ pectful a n d friendly to B r ā h m a n a s , full of compassion to the n e e d y — a thoroughly religious p r i n c e " 3 . T h e N P . C h . 76 & . 77 deify h i m a n d his Mantra a n d Kavaca are regarded as very effective. P u r ā n a s tell us t h a t he was blessed with a thousand arms by D a t t ā t r e y a . He was t h e sovereign ruler who conquered the e a r t h a n d d o n a t e d it as daksinā. T h e only fault committed by h i m was the raid on J a m a ­ dagni's hermitage w h e n he a n d his entourage were given a royal 1.

Op. Cit. Śānti 49.9-28, also Anuśāsana, Ch. 4.

2.

V. S.

S u k t h a n k a r — " T h e Bhrgus a n d the Bhārata, A] T e x t historic

study" ABORI.XVIII.1-76. 3.

(1936)

Arjurtas tu mahātejā ball nityarh śamātmakah .1 Brahmanyaśca Jaranyaśca data ŚūraSca Bhārata jj —Mbh.-Śānti.

49-44.


Introduction

Ixxii i

reception by J a m a d a g n i . Arjuna was a king of M ā h i s m a t ī . J a m a d a g n i was a p r o m i n e n t Bhārgava whose h e r m i t a g e was either in or on t h e border of Arjuna's kingdom. He knew how powerful was the Bhārgava clan, their m a t r i m o n i a l relations w i t h his rival kings of Ayodhyā, K a n a u j ( K ā n y a k u b j a ) etc. Politically it was not desirable to allow such an inimical centre either in or n e a r the borders of his kingdom. For m a n y years Bhargavas t u r n e d inimical since when his tax-collectors haras­ sed t h e m a n d m a n y fled for life, though they were on friendly terms d u r i n g his father's reign. No sane ruler should allow such an economically powerful inimical centre n e a r his kingdom even t h o u g h he be given a rousing reception a n d treated w i t h sump­ tuous b a n q u e t s etc. But he did not raid the Āśrama. Even the pro-Bhārgava M b h . — a n Itihāsa (Record of facts)—does not hold h i m respon­ sible for taking away the calf of J a m a d a g n i ' s cow (not the cow as stated in other P u r ā n a s ) but his sons did it without his knowledge. T h i s is t h e oldest pro-Bhārgava a c c o u n t of the cause of P a r a ś u r ā m a ' s action. O u r P u r ā n a attributes consent of t h e king to his m i n i s t e r C a n d r a g u p t a ' s plan of carrying away the cow, b u t M b h . recognizes Arjuna's ignorance a n d n o t even his assent on t h e m a t t e r , t h o u g h t h a t was the cause of his d e a t h . T h e M b h . however attributes his d e a t h to Apava Vasistha's curse which t u r n e d the heads of his sons. O t h e r P u r ā n a s offer different versions: T h e Bh. P., a V a i s n a v a P u r ā n a , attributes t h e order of taking away t h e cow to king K ā r t t a v ī r y a ( I X . 15.26). Pd. P. (VI.241.30-38) tells us t h a t w h e n king K ā r t t a v ī r y a a t t e m p t e d to seize the cow, she by t h e dint of h e r power defeated his army, went out of sight a n d a p p ­ roached I n d r a . T h e frustrated king, m a d w i t h rage, killed the sage by the blows of his fist.i S K . P . V (Revā K h a n d a ) C h . 218 •continued

1.

tasya p u t r ā . . . . J a m a d a g n i — d h e n v a s te vatsam āninyuli / ajñātarii Kārtavīryena H a i h a y e n d r e n a dhimatā // t a n n i m i t t a m a b h ū d y u d d h a m J ā m a d a g n e r m a h ā t m a n a h // — M b h . Śānti 49.45-47. sva-sainvarh nihatarh drsfvā so'rjunah Krodha-mūrchitah j musfinā tādayāmāsa Bhārgavarh dvijasattamam // tāditas tena bahuSo ( ) vikalāńgah prakalpitah j Papāta sahasā bhumau mamāra dvija-sattamah 11 ~Pd.P. V I . 2 4 1 . 37-38.


lxxiv

Brahmānāa Purāna

describes the scuffle between J a m a d a g n i a n d K ā r t t a v ī r y a for t h e cow ( K ā m a d h e n u ) in which J a m a d a g n i is killed ( 2 6 ) . T h e lack of u n a n i m i t y in t h e account of t h e P u r ā n a s is significant. VIII

Historical Tradition in Bd.P.

Although as a M a h ā - p u r ā n a , Bd.P. has t r e a t e d the dynas­ ties of Vaivasvata M a n u , the Solar a n d L u n a r races etc., this P u r ā n a like the M t . (50.57-89, 271-273), Vā.99.250-435 a n d Bs.P. (Bhavisya 3.1.3 & 6) P u r ā n a s , presents eight successive dynasties of the rulers of M a g a d h a since the B h ā r a t a W a r . * " It mentions not only the total n u m b e r of years covered by each dynasty b u t also the n u m b e r of years each king (of every d y n a s t y ) reigned—details n o t given for any other kingdom. It is obviously due to the political i m p o r t a n c e of M a g a d h a as a seat of imperial power while the P u r ā n a s were in the formative stage. T h e a u t h o r of Bd.P. assumes t h a t he writes the P u r ā n a in the reign of Senajit of the B r h a d r a t h a dynasty of M a g a d h a (a contempo­ r a r y of Adhisīmakrsna of the P a u r a v a dynasty a n d D i v ā k a r a of t h e Solar dynasty of Ayodhyā a n d uses future tense to all the kings of all the dynasties who ruled after t h e m . T h e details of dynasties t h a t ruled over M a g a d h a since the beginning of t h e K a l i Age are as follows: /

The Bārhadratha Dynasty* (Bd.P.II.iii.74.107-121)

J a r ā s a n d h a - ^ S a h a d e v a (killed in t h e B h ā r a t a War)-*Somāpi (58)-*-Śrutaśravas (67)**-*Ayutāya (26 ) ^ N i r ā m i t r a * * * (100)->-Suksatra (56) B r h a t k a r m ā (23) -> Senajit (The 'Present r u l e r ' for Bd.P.) •Although Bh.P. I X . 1 2 . 9 - 1 6 ; 22.34-49; X I I . 1 . 2 - 3 6 V P . I V . 2 1 ; 2 2 , 2 3 , 2 4 deal with the same topic. Bd., V ā . and to some extent M t . P . form

a

group.

H e n c e 1 h a v e taken them together. Bs.P. is probably their Chief source. •The Arabic figures in brackets after the n a m e of the king denote the n u m b e r of years of the reign of that king. * * * As such a long period is not normally possible, some petty or insigni­ ficant rulers preceding h i m are not m e n t i o n e d and a probably alloted to his reign.

consolidated period

is


lxxv

Introduction

F u t u r e rulers : Śrutañjaya (40)->Ripuñjaya (35)-*Śuci (58)->Ksema (28)->Suvrata (64)->-Dharmanetra* (58)-»Suśarma (38)->-Drdhasena ( 5 8 ) - * S u m a t i (33)-*-Sunetra (40)-*Satyajit (83)->Viśvajit (25)-*Ariñjaya(50). These 22 B ā r h a d r a t h a kings ruled for 1000 years. II

Pradyota Dynasty

(Op.Cit. W . 1 2 2 - 1 2 7 a ) According to Bd.P., Ś u n a k a (Pulaka in M t . P . ) a minister of K i n g Ariñjaya (V.L. Ripuñjaya) killed his master a n d installed his son P r a d y o t i on the M a g a d h a n t h r o n e . T h e following is the list of rulers of P r a d y o t a d y n a s t y : Pradyota

(23)->-Pālaka

(24)->Viśākhayūpa

(50)->-Ajaka

(21) ->-Nandi v a r d h a n a ( 2 0 ) . T h u s the five kings of P r a d y o t a dynasty ruled over M a ­ g a d h a for 138 years. This account in the P u r ā n a is misleading. P r a d y o t a or C a n d a P r a d y o t a , Vāsavadattā's father a n d U d a y a n a ' s fatherin-law ruled from Ujjayinī as has been attested by Bhāsa in his plays a n d also in the M t . P . , while describing future kings. 1 T h i s P r a d y o t a was a contemporary of Bimbisāra of M a g a d h a according to Pali records a n d there is no reliable evidence to presume a P r a d y o t a d ynasty in M a g a d h a . 2 III

Śiśunāga Dynasty

(Op.Cit. 127b-135a) Śiśunāga of V ā r ā n a s ī vanquished the P r a d y o t a rulers a n d his son shifted his capital to Girivraja. T h e following were t h e rulers : Śiśunāga ( 4 0 ) - » K ā k a v a r n a , shifts his capital to Girivraja ( 6 3 ) - * K s e m a d h a r m a n (20)->-Ksattraujas (40) ->-Vidhisāra •Installed as a king w h e n he w a s only five years old. 1.

Brhadrathefvatīkfu

vītihotresvavantisu

/

Pulakah Svāminarh hatvā svaputram abhiseksyati \\ — M t . P . 271.1 2.

The Vedic Age, p. 3 2 9 .


Ixxvi

Brahmānda Purāna

(Bimbisāra) (38) ->Ajātaśatru (25)->Darbhaka (Darśaka) (35) - * U d ā y i n , the founder of K u s u m a p u r a (modern-Patna) to the s o u t h of the G a ñ g ā (33)->-Nandivardhana (40)->-Mahānandi (43). T h e r e is a discrepancy in the total period of this dynasty viz. 360 years (V. 134)—actually it a m o u n t s to 377 years. T h e P u r ā n a s (including B d . P ) . have distorted history. Vidhisāra i.e. Bimbisāra (Seniya in the A M g c a n o n ) occupied the t h r o n e of M a g a d h a immediately after Ariñjaya a n d t h a t Śiśunāga c a m e a few generations (after a n d not before Bimbisāra 1 . IV Nanda Dynasty (Op.Cit. W . 139-143) M a h ā p a d m a ( N a n d a ) , T h e son of M a h ā n a n d i from a Śūdra woman, exterminator of all Ksattriyas, the sole emperor (ekarāt, ekachattra) ruled 88 years—8 sons one after a n o t h e r ruled for 12 years. T o t a l period of N a n d a dynasty 100 years. V Maurya Dynasty (Op.Cit. W . 144-149) A B r a h m i n K a u t i l y a 'will' uproot N a n d a s a n d instal C a n d r a g u p t a M a u r y a as the king. C a n d r a g u p t a (24)-»-Bhadra-Sāra (Bindusāra) (25)-> Aśoka (36)->Kulāla ( K u n ā l a ) (8)->Bandhupālita (8) - >I ndra Pālita (10)->Devavarmā (7 - » Ś a t a d h a n u (8)->-Brhadratha ( 7 ) . T h e n u m b e r of regnal years of B a n d h u p ā l i t a a n d Śatad h a n u are given as p e r emendation in D K A P . 29.Though Bd.P. records 9 M a u r y a n kings, M t . P . , V P . a n d Bh.P. state t h a t the total n u m b e r of these kings as 10. VI Śuñga Dynasty (Op.Cit. W . 1 4 9 - I 5 6 a ) P u s p a - m i t r a ( P u s y a — 0 ) , (60 years)-»Agnimitra (8)-> Sujyestha (7) - W a s u m i t r a ( 1 0 ) - * B h a d r a ( 2 ) - * P u l i n d a k a (3) ->Ghosa (3)-*Vajramitra (7)->Bhāgavata ( 3 2 ) ^ - D e v a b hū mi (10). 1.

The Vedic Age (tSVB), p. 328 and The Age of Imperial Unity, p p . 18-22


Introduction

lxxvii

O t h e r P u r ā n a s agree t h a t Pusyamitra, the c o m m a n d e r of the a r m y o f B r h a d r a t h a M a u r y a uprooted h i m b u t credit h i m w i t h a rule of 36 years a n d not 60. T h u s 10 Śuńga kings are said to have ruled for 112 (Śatam pūrnarh daśa due ca) years in B d . P . V. 156a b u t actually the total a m o u n t s to 142 years. V I I Kānva Dynasty {Op.Cit. VV. 156b-159) As the last Śuńga king Devamiti a was dissolute, his minister Vasudeva overthrew h i m a n d killed h i m . T h e r e were five kings in his dynasty as follows : Vasudeva ( 5 ) - * B h u m i m i t r a (24)-> N ā r ā y a n a (12)-*-Suśarman ( 4 ) . These K a n v ā y a n a kings ruled for 45 years. V I I I Āndhra Dynasty (Op.Cit. W . 160-170) Bd , V ā , Bh. a n d V. P u r ā n a s agree t h a t there were 30 kings in this dynasty b u t actually give only 16, 25, 23 a n d 24 n a m e s . T h e fullest list of 30 kings is in the M t . P. Bd. P. gives the rulers in this dynasty as follows : Sindhuka (Simuka) ( 2 3 ) - * K r s n a , b r o t h e r of S i ndhu k a ( 1 0 ) - > Ś ā n t a k a r n i (56)-»-Apolava (12)-s-Patumān (24)->Anist a k a r m ā (25)->-Hāla (1) (5 according to the text a d o p t e d in DKA.p.41)->-Pattallaka (5)->-PurīsabhIru (v.l. 1. P u r i k a s e n a ) (21)->Śātakarni (1 )->-Śivasvāti ( 2 8 ) - > G a u t a m ī p u t r a (21)-> Ś ā t a k a r n i (1) ->Śivasvāti (2o) -»-Gautamī-putra (21) -^Yajñaśrī Ś ā t a k a r n i (29) -> Vijaya (6) D a n d a ś r i ś ā t a k a m (3) ->Pulomāri (v.l. Pulomāvi) (7). Bd.P. states t h a t the 30 kings of this dynasty will rule for 456 years (Samāh iatāni catvāri pañcāśat saf tathaiva ca) V. 170. T h e n u m b e r of kings e n u m e r a t e d is 16 a n d the t o t a l years of their rule a m o u n t s to 262. T h e total span of these dynasties of K a l i a g e is given as follows : 1050 years : F r o m the b i r t h of P a r ī k s i t to the c o ro na t i o n of Mahāpadma Nanda* 836 years : F r o m M a h ā p a d m a N a n d a to the end of t h e A n d h r a Dynasty. T h e period is re-stated w i t h reference to S a p t a r s i e r a years. •That m e a n s the Bhārata W a r took p l a c e in the 15th Cent. B.C.


lxxviii

Brahmānda Purāna

814 years : 1050 years • 836 years :

F r o m P r a t ī p a to Parlksit F r o m Parlksit to M a h ā p a d m a N a n d a M a h ā p a d m a to the last of Ā n d h r a s .

2700 years. T h u s from P r a t ī p a to the e n d of t h e A n d h r a s comprised a complete cycle of t h e Saptarsis (Great B e a r ) . O u r P u r ā n a presents this m u c h historical d a t a from the beginning of the K a l i Age to the end of the Ā n d h r a dynasty. O t h e r great dynasties like the Solar race a n d t h e L u n a r race are n o t adequately treated. After the description of t h e A n d h r a dynasty, Bd.P. e n u m e ­ rates some local dynasties with the total n u m b e r of Kings per dynasty : No.

of

Kings

in

the

Dynasty

7 10 7 10

A n d h r a s (Prob. A n d h r a b h r t y a s ) Abhīras Gardabhins Śakas

8 14 13 11

Yavanas Tusāras G u r u n d a s (Mlecchas) Maunas

Total No. years of the dynastic rule 300 years. 67 years. 72 years. 380 years. 160 years. 500 years. 300 years. 300 years.

After these, K i l a k i l a clan will rule, after w h o m Vindhyaśakti (300 A . D . ) will rule for 96 years (?) Vindhyaśakti, the founder of V ā k ā t a k a dynasty was a B r ā h m a n a of Visnu-vrddha gotra a n d 96 years is probably not the reign-period b u t his life­ s p a n * . Vindhya-Śakti's son Pravīra i.e. M a h a r a j a PravaraS e n a I ( d e a t h circa A . D . 325) who is credited to have performed n o t only Vājapeya sacrifices b u t four A ś v a m e d h a s . * * It shows t h a t on t h e back-drop of M l e c c h a rule he cham­ pioned the cause of Brahmanism.

*The Age of Imperial Unity, p. 219. * » O p . , cit. p . 2 2 0 .


lxxix

Introduction

The Nāga dynasty of Vidiiā T h e N ā g a dynasty of Vidiśā is recorded only in Bd.P. a n d V ā . P . b u t n o t in M t . P . T h e following is the line of k i n g s — S a d ā c a n d r a Son of Śesa Nāga)-»-Candrāmśu-»-Nakhavān -> Dhanadharman-vBhūtimān. Bd.P. does n o t m e n t i o n the G u p t a dynasty. Bd.P.II.iii.74. 195 which corresponds to Vā.P.99.383 reads Sapta-variiśaj&h instead of Gupta-vamśajāh* as in Vā P. IX.

The Date of the Bd. P.

Like the M b h . a n d other P u r ā n a s , Bd.P. has assimilated a n u m b e r of modifications, interpolations etc. d u r i n g the course of its transmission from the days of K r s n a D v a i p ā y a n a Vyāsa. We can fix the d a t e (s) of t h e different parts of t h e text, the general d a t e being t h a t of its last redaction. Bd.P. states t h a t it was composed d u r i n g the reign of B ā r h a d r a t h a king Senajit ( I I . i i i . 7 4 . 1 1 3 ) — a c o n t e m p o r a r y of P a u r a v a king Adhisīma K r s n a a n d king D i v ā k a r a of Ayodhyā. Adhisīmakrsna was the fourth in descent from Parlksit. Bd.P. states t h a t a period of 1050 years elapsed from the b i r t h of Parīksit (the B h ā r a t a W a r ) to the coronation of M a h ā n a n d a (ibid V . 2 2 7 ) . T h e coronation of M a h ā p a d m a N a n d a took place in 382 B.C. This m e a n s the Birth of Parīksit took place in 1432 B.C. * *. Pargiter's assumption of 950 B.C. as t h e d a t e of t h e Bhā­ r a t a war ( A I H T , p p . 179-183) is not acceptable in view of the u n a n i m o u s tradition of the P u r ā n a s . T h e Vedic Age (p. 273) accepts 1400 B.C.. as the d a t e of the B h ā r a t a W a r . Now Adhi­ sīmakrsna was the fourth in descent from P a r ī k s i t * * * . If 1432 B.C. be the d a t e of t h e b i r t h of Parlksit, a period of 100 or 125 * I however believe (in the absence o f M S S . e v i d e n c e )

that i t should

be regarded as an o p e n question. * * o r in 1397 B.C. if the reading in the P u r ā n a be taken d o n e in the V e d i c A g e , p.

2 7 3 . S.K.

as

(Vikas, D e l h i 1 9 7 8 ) locates Parīksit in the middle o f t h e l O t h Cent. R a y Choudhari in 9 0 0

B.C.

Political

1015as

Chatterji. S e l e c t e d writings, p. History

of India from

the

is

140

B.C. a n d Accession of

Parīksit to the extinction of the Gupta Dynasty, p. 9. * * *Pariksit - > J a n a m e j a y a - > Ś a t ā n ī k a —yAśvamedhadatta-yAdhtsimakrsna.


]xxx

Brahmānda Purāna

years must have elapsed between Parīksit a n d Adhisīmakrsna. T h u s the n a r r a t i o n of Bd.P. in the N a i m i s a forest in the reign of B ā r h a d r a t h a king Senajit took place circa 1300 B.C. according to the Bd.P. As a P u r ā n a is m e n t i o n e d in the Atharva Veda X I . 7 . 2 4 ; XV.6.10-11 a n d in Āpastamba Dharma Sūtra 1.6.19.13; II.9.23.3-6, we need not doubt the existence of the nucleus of Bd.P. in t h a t early period. But the present text is definitely later both in language a n d contents as can be seen from the following : (1) T h e Sk. language of the text is m u c h m o r e m o d e r n t h a n Atharvaveda and Āpastamba Dharma Sūtra. As t h e various etymologies* (noted in annotations) show, people have forgotten t h e root-sense of the words. It means Sk. has ceased to be a language of c o m m o n p a r l a n c e . (2) T h e list of " f u t u r e k i n g s " in Bd.P. II.iii.74 describes the A n d h r a dynasty (3rd cent A . D . ) . T h e evidence given by Pargiter in D K , p. 53 is sufficient to show t h a t G u p t a dynasty is m e n t i o n e d in Bd.P. II.iii.74.195 though the p r i n t e d edition records the r e a d i n g : Sapta-vamśajāh instead of Gupta-vamśajāh in the corresponding verses in V ā . P . 99.383. T h e following verse is the verse in question. anu-Gańgā Prayāgam ca Sake tarn Magadhāmś tathā / etān jānapadān sarvān bhoksyante Gupta- (Sapta-Bd.P.)Vamśajāhj Bd.P.II.iii.74.195 a n d Vā.P.99.383. T h e verse describes correctly the region ruled by G u p t a s . But now the m e n t i o n of G u p t a s in Bd.P. is accepted a n d Pargiter's claim (DKA 53-54) t h a t contemporary dynasties of the early fourth Century A . D . in V ā . P . a n d Bd.P. is n o t t h a t controversial. (3) T h e m e n t i o n of Bhīmasena a n d N ā r a d a on Chs. on Music shows t h a t this portion m a y be located between 400-600 A . D . T h e same applies to t h e m e n t i o n of V a r a r u c i a n d N ā t y a sāstra. (4) C h a p t e r s on P a r a ś u r ā m a legend show the strong influence of R ā d h ā - K r s n a cult in its T a n t r i c aspect (vide Supra V i d e the A p p e n d i x to this note.


Introduction

Ixxxi

T a n t r i s m in B d . P . ) . T ā n t r i s m was very p o p u l a r between 8th to 11 th C e n t . A . D . in East I n d i a . And it was d u r i n g t h a t period t h a t R ā d h ā cult flourished in t h a t region. N P . 109.19 mentions the legend of P a r a ś u r ā m a in its table of contents of Bd.P. But we c a n n o t say definitely whether the a n a c h r o n i c R ā d h ā - K r s n a element is implied in N P . As N P . itself contains the T a n t r i c worship etc. of R ā d h ā - K r s n a (Chs. 80, 81 a n d 8 2 ) , Bd.P. might have these chapters even before the NP a n d the N P . m a y be presumed to imply the existence of these chapters before it. As most of the c o n t e n t s of Bd.P. (except those on Lalitā M ā h ā t ­ m y a ) are recorded in N P . 109, Bd.P. definitely belongs to the p r e - N P . period (700-1000 A . D . ) (5) T h e Javanese version of the Bd.P. does not contain the c h a p t e r on V a m ś ā n u c a r i t a section of the Bd.P. Prof. J. G o n d a attributes this to the lack of interest of the Indonesian translator in I n d i a n dynasties. But w h e n the Indonesian translator sum­ marises or translates the major portion of the Bd.P., he would n o t have disregarded the V a m ś ā n u c a r i t a portion h a d it existed in his Sk.Ms. It must have been an incomplete copy which reached Indonesia in the early centuries of the Christian era. In spite of the interpolatory portion, the Bd.P. is one of the oldest P u r ā n a s as it follows the old Catuspāda structure a n d its m a i n body belongs to the pre-NP. period (700-1000 A . D . ) . Appendix to the date of the Bd. P. Some etymologies T h e a u t h o r of the Bd.P. takes pleasure in etymologies j u s t to serve his purpose a n d pleasure. Although most of t h e m a r e discussed in the annotations, here are a few specimens : 1. 2.

nara 'a m a n ' <na4-vTr—1.1.5.135; 1.2.6.56-57 ambhas ' w a t e r ^ ^ b h ā 'tos hine'—1.1.5.133

3.

R u d r a from y/ru—and y/dru (i.2.9.78). N o r m a l l y derived from y/rud—'to cry'

4.

D e v a ^div—to play 1.2.8.10; ' a god'

5. 6.

raksas 'a d e m o n ' -y/raks—to protect 1.2.8.33 G a n d h a r v a y/dhi<dhay ' t o d r i n k ' I.ii.8.41

also -y/div—to shine

it

is


Q

I—l

as

zo

(3d

H O W

<

I

U •< M

I

o


lxxxii 7. 8. 9.

Brahmānda Purāna Pulaha :

'Keśair lavaih s a m u d b h ū t a h / 'Born of h a i r ' — I l . i i i . 1.45 Vasistha—'possessor of VastC (wealth) or 'Vaśi' self-controller I I . i i i . 1.46. Medinī ' T h e earth'—medas 'fat' 'overspread with the fat of M a d h u a n d (body)

Kaitabha' I.ii.37.2

10.

K u b e r a < A u (bad )+bera God of wealth

II.iii.8.44.'ugly' Deform-bodied

11.

Hetu\/han<.to kill (the a r g u m e n t ) 'cause', ' t h e middle T e r m in Logic' •sj hi — to go ( m e a n i n g arrived a t ) I.ii.33.49.

12.

C a r a k a • 'A Class of B r ā h m a n a s ' < y/car— (performed a t o n e m e n t for G u r u ' s B r a h m a h a t y ā ) I, ii.35.27.


CHAPTER ONE Contents of the Brahmānda Purāna1 [ A r r i v a l of Sūta R o m a h a r s a n a at the sacrificial session at K u r u k s e t r a — R e q u e s t e d by sages thereof, to recite the P u r ā n a S ū t a recites the Brahmānda Parana beginning w i t h its Contents.] 1. Obeisance, obeisance to the Self-born deity consisting of the quality of sattva on (the occasions of) annihilation, creation or sustenance (of the universe) . Obeisance to the selfb o r n deity of three-fold forms viz. Sattva, Rajas a n d Tamas. 2. Victorious is Lord H a r i w h o sustains t h e worlds, w h o is u n b o r n , who is omnipresent a n d possessed of the ( t h r e e ) qualities yet is (also) devoid of them.

1. ' T h e present Purāna is called the Brahmānda ( B d . P . ) , as god Brahma narrated it w i t h special reference to Brahmānda'. T h e term Brahmānda connotes a mixture of ancient Indian concepts about Cosmography, Cosmo­ logy and Cosmogony. In the Nārada Purāna ( N P . ) 109.1, it is said to be an ancient Purāna dealing with the events of the Ādi-Kalpa. It contains a

number

of verses and chapters c o m m o n to the Vāyu Purāna ( V ā . P . ) which led Kirfel to propose a theory of c o m m o n origin of the Bd.P. and V ā . P . (Purāna PañcaLaksaria). Perhaps the wording of the Kūrma Purāna(K.P.) 1.1.15 might have led h i m to thin!: so, but it misled M. Ali to believe that 'The geographical section of this Purāna (Bd.P.) appears to be a late copy (about 1030 A . D . ) of the V ā y u with slight alterations and modifications introduced by the co­ pyist.'

(Geography of the Purānas P.8.) But the statement in the Bd.P. and the

N . P . about the oral transmission of the Bd.P. makes it clear that this is

an

independent work w i t h V ā y u as a narrator of this P u r ā n a and it need not be confused with the V ā . P . T h e problem however will be discussed in the Introduction. But I must acknowledge that the text of the identical and similar verses

in

Vā.P.

and

Bd.P., helped me to e m e n d or correct a number of printing mistakes in the Bd.P. which would have otherwise remained obscure.


4

Brahmānda Purāna

3. (I seek refuge in g o d ) Brahma, the creator of the world, who is omniscient, unvanquished, who is the lord of (everything) past, present and future a n d who is the real Master of all. 4. F o u r things are to be resorted to by the good—namely, the unparalleled knowledge a n d d e t a c h m e n t , a n d super-human power a n d virtue (found in full form in case) of the lord of the universe. 5. T h e Lord (knowing) t h a t these h u m a n dispositions always consist of the good a n d the evil, (created) them again, indeed, without hesitation (aviśañkah) for the sake of performance of (religious) actions. 6. T h e creator of the world who knows full well the reality about the world and is conversant with Yoga, resorted to Yoga a n d created all living beings mobile a n d immobile. 7. I am desirous of knowing the P u r ā n i c narrative a n d so I seek refuge in the m i g h t y L o r d ( t h e creator of the universe), the witness of the worlds a n d the supreme all-pervading R u l e r . 8. T h a t Prajāpati ( L o r d of all creatures), Lord (Brahma) recounted to Vasistha 1 , the entire P u r ā n a t h a t is on a p a r with the Vedas a n d the m a i n theme of which is t h e real state of the universe. 9. T h e holy sage Vasistha taught to his grandson, Parāś­ ara, the son of Śakti, this sacred ( P u r ā n a ) which is the n e c t a r of the knowledge of reality. 10. T h e holy lord P a r ā ś a r a , at first, t a u g h t sage J ā t u karnya this divine P u r ā n a t h a t is on a p a r with the Vedas. 1. W . 8 - 1 7 give the line of transmission of the B d . P . as follows : G o d Brahma—sage Vasistha—Parāśara—Jātukainya — Dvaipāyana (Vyāsa)— Sūta L o ( R o ) m a h a r s a n a . An important point to note is the missing link of Vāyu here. N . P . 109.35 states : Vyāso labdhvā tatai'caitat, Prabhañjana-mukhodgatam T h a t is according to N . P . Jātukarnya—Vāyu or P r a b h a ñ j a n a — V y ā s a , is the proper Paramparā (line of oral transmission.). T h i s lacuna is however indi­ rectly supplied in V . 3 6 b below where the W i n d g o d ( M ā t a r i ś v a n ) is stated to be a narrator. Another point is the emphatic claim of the P u r ā n a to a status equal to the V e d a . A n d the third point is about the m a i n object of the P u r ā n a viz. to explain the real state or reality of the world (Loka-taltva, VV 1-8, 12

etc.).


5

I.I.I.11-17

1

11. After learning t h e P u r ā n a , the learned J ā t u k a r n y a transferred the knowledge of the supreme, eternal B r a h m a n to D v a i p ā y a n a 2 . 12. D v a i p ā y a n a was delighted thereby. T h a t self-contro­ lled sage passed on the kuowledge of t h a t extremely wonder­ ful P u r ā n a t h e content of which was t h e knowledge of the real state of t h e world. 13-14. F o r the sake of p r o p a g a t i n g it in t h e worlds, he taught this P u r ā n a which is (highly esteemed) like the Vedas a n d which contains m a n y topics, to J a i m i n i , S u m a n t u , Vaiśampāyana, Pailava who was t h e fourth among, them a n d L o m a h a r ­ sana the fifth. 3 He ( L o m a h a r s a n a ) was (otherwise called) Sūta. He was h u m b l e , righteous a n d pure. His modes of n a r r a t i o n were extremely wonderful. 15-17. After learning t h e p u r ā n a , L o m a h a r s a n a became h u m b l e r . He became extremely intelligent and virtuous. He was a p p r o a c h e d and questioned by a sage like you (?) (regard­ ing m a t t e r s of mythology etc.) He h a d t h e most excellent selfcontrol. Along with (the other) sages, he used to bow down to the sages after c i r c u m a m b u l a t i n g them. He was endowed with great devotion. After acquiring learning, he b e c a m e satisfied 1.

Jātukarnya or J ā t ū k a r n a was a self-controlled s a g e — a m e m b e r of

Yudhisthira's Court

( M b h . S a b h ā . 4 . 1 4 ) . O n e wonders w h y the M b h . a n d

other Purānas do not furnish more details about h i m w h o taught this Purāna to D v a i p ā y a n a Vyāsa. Secondly, Parāśara teaches this Purāna to Jātukarnya and not to his own son Vyāsa. 2. as

D v a i p ā y a n a — T h e son of Parāśara and Satyavatī, popularly

known

V y ā s a (the arranger) due to his classification of the floating traditional

M a n t r a s into four V e d a s . He w a s n a m e d D v a i p ā y a n a as he was kept in an island

in

the

Yamuna. nyasto tasmād

dvlpe

sa

yad

Dvaipāyanah

bālas smrtah —Mbh.

Adi

63.86

In the Pali canon also, we are told that one of the eight ways of n a m i n g a person is his geographical residence. 3. to

his

V y ā s a seems to have taught this P u r ā n a (presumably others also) five

disciples

but Jaimini, S u m a n t u ,

V a i ś a m p ā y a n a and Pailava

( P a i l a ) took interest in the V e d a , leaving the

preservation

Lore to S ū t a

to

L o ( R o ) maharsana.

R o m a h a r s a n a as he m a d e the narration.

According

hair of his

of

V ā . P . 1.16,

the he

Purānic is

called

audience bristle by his eloquent


6

Brahmāna'a Purāna 1

a n d went t o K u r u k s e t r a . H e (humbly) a p p r o a c h e d t h e p u r e sages who were performing t h e elaborate-sacrificial session. 18. T h e performers of t h e Satra met R o m a h a r s a n a (i.e. L o m a h a r s a n a ) with great humility. He excelled t h e m in intel­ lect ( b u t ) as laid down in t h e scriptures 2 , ( h e bowed down) duly to them. 19. On seeing R o m a h a r s a n a then, all those sages were extremely pleased. T h e y were glad a n d their minds became happy. 20. T h e y worshipped h i m with all necessary requisites of hospitality, such as Arghya ( M a t e r i a l s of worship), Pādya ( w a t e r for washing t h e feet) etc. He paid respects to all t h e sages. He received the permission of the king ( ? ) . 2 1 . After p e r m i t t i n g him, t h e sages enquired h i m of his health. He a p p r o a c h e d all those sages (individually) (consider­ ing t h e m to b e ) t h e eternal B r a h m a n , the great splendour. W h e n t h e assembled persons indicated their consent, he sat on a beautiful well-covered seat. 22-23. W h e n he h a d taken his seat, all t h e sages of praise­ worthy, holy vows, well-disciplined according to (religious) rules, a n d of calm a n d concentrated m i n d s , became delighted a n d surrounded h i m w h o was an observer of great (religious) vows. W i t h deep love ( a n d r e v e r e n c e ) , they spoke to h i m ( a s follows) : 24. " W e l c o m e *to you, O highly fortunate one. H o w glad are we, the residents of this place, to see you, t h e best of sages, of excellent vows, hale a n d hearty, O intelligent one !

1.

T h i s Purāna is (re-)narrated at Kuruksetra where sages held

sacrificial 2.

a

session. T h i s Sūta is n o t a Brahmin. He is the Pratiloma offspring of a

Ksattriya father and a Brahmin mother vide Gaut.Dh.S.4.15, B a u d h ā y a n a (1.9.9)

and Smrtis of M a n u

(10-11), Yājñavalkya

( 1 . 9 3 ) . H e n c e this for-

mality on his part. In V . 2 1 , the term of greeting h i m is

anāmaya

and

kuSala used in the case of Brāhmanas. According to Gautama Dharma (Gaut.

Dh.S.)

should

be

M a n u also

V V . 37-38,

respectively (11:127)

guests

greeted

not Sūtra

of Brāhmana, Ksattriya, V a i ś y a castes

with

the words Kuśala, anāmaya and ārogya.

prescribes : Brāhmanam

kuśalam

prcchet

Ksattra-bandhum

anāmayam


I.I.1.25-37a

7

25. T h a n k s to you t h e performer of meritorious h o l y rites. I no longer consider this e a r t h a void, O S ū t a , you a r e t h e disciple of t h a t noble-souled sage Vyāsa. 26. You a r e intelligent a n d you are always worthy of his blessings. You a r e fully epuipped w i t h t h e good qualities of a genuine disciple. You a r e learned a n d educated. Since you a r e worthy of being blessed, O holy lord, you have understood t h e principles. 27. After having a t t a i n e d vast knowledge, you are free from d o u b t s in every respect. O wise one, it always behoves you to r e c o u n t to us, everything t h a t we ask you. 28. We wish to hear t h e divine story of t h e P u r ā n a t h a t is on a p a r w i t h t h e Śrutis and t h a t is full of righteous topics. This has already been h e a r d by you from V y ā s a . " 29.

On being requested t h u s by t h e sages

then, the

excessively intelligent Sūta, endowed w i t h humility, offered an excellent reply full of modesty thus : 30. " W h a t e v e r intellect I possess is d u e to the service I rendered to t h e sage. It is certainly t r u e t h a t my ( i n t e l l e c t ) should be utilised for serving ( o t h e r s ) . 3 1 . T h a t being t h e situation, O excellent B r ā h m a n a s (I shall r e c o u n t ) whatever is possible for m e . It behoves you to ask questions on a n y topic w h i c h you desire to k n o w . " 32. On h e a r i n g his sweet u t t e r a n c e , t h e sages again replied to S ū t a whose eyes welled with tears ( o f j o y ) . 33. " Y o u a r e particularly well-versed in t h e details (of this t o p i c ) . You have seen Vyāsa personally. H e n c e you explain t h e origin of t h e world completely. 1 34. We wish to know who was b o r n in which family. ( W e wish to know t h e details of the family and ancestry of t h e kings, sages e t c ) . K i n d l y recount the wonderfully diversified creative activity of Prajāpati during the days of y o r e " . T h u s was t h e excellent a n d noble-souled R o m a h a r s a n a requested after offering h i m d u e hospitable reception. 35-37a. T h a t excellent-most Sūta n a r r a t e d everything in detail a n d in d u e order. 1.

T h i s is indicative of the title 'Brahmānda Purāna'.


8

Brahmānda Purāna

S ū t a said : — "O excellent Brāhmanas, I shall recount in d u e order t h a t sacred story which D v a i p ā y a n a , w h o was pleased with me, had n a r r a t e d to m e . O B r ā h m a n a s , I shall expound the P u r ā n a t h a t h a d been related by M ā t a r i ś v a n 1 ( t h e wind-god) on being asked by t h e noble-souled sages of N a i m i s a forest. 2 37b-39. A P u r ā n a is characterised by five topics 3 . Viz. Sarga( P r i m a r y cveauon), Pratisarga (Dissolution and R e c r e a t i o n ) , Varhśa (Lineage of Kings e t c . ) , Manvantaras ( t h e regions of M a n u s or Manu-periods) a n d Vamśānucarita (chronological description of kings a n d sages). T h e first pāda (section) (of this P u r ā n a ) is called Prakriyā-Pāda (section on rites). In this section there is the summing 1.

It m e a n s the Wind-god did not teach it to D v a i p ā y a n a . Secondly

the present text is a rehp.sh of the Purāna narrated at Naimioāranya. 2.

This is modern Nimsar at a distance of 20 miles from

Sitapur

45 miles to the N W . of Lucknow. T h e word Naimisa is derived different words ( 1 ) Nimisa 'the twinkling of the eye' a n d

from

and two

( 2 ) Nemi—'the felly

of a wheel'. According to ( 1 ) , this place c a m e to be called N a i m i s a as V i s n u killed an army of Asuras within the twinkling of an e y e at this place

(vide

Śridhara on Bh.P.I.1.4 where he quotes V . R . P . as his authority). According to ( 2 ) w h i c h is accepted here in infra 1.1.2.8, g o d Brahrnā, to ensure a sacred place for a sacrifice for sages created mentally a wheel w h i c h went on running till it reached the vicinity of the G o m a t i river near w h i c h its felly broke d o w n and it stopped. T h e sages w h o followed it to that place accepted it for their sacrificial session. This popular etymology from Nemi is endorsed by Vā.P.I.2.8, Devi Bh.P. 1.2.28-32 where it adds that Kali cannot enter that place. It was at this place that R ā m a performed his horse-sacrifice

(V.R.

7.91.15). Although there was another N a i m i s ā r a n y a in Kuruksetra

(vide Chān-

dogya Upa. 1.2.13 and Kā(haka Samhitā 10.6) and although the Aryan expan­ sion was from the West to the East, the N a i m i s ā r a n y a on to be the 'birth-place' 3.

The

five

the Gomati appears

of Purānas.

characteristics of a Purāna as found in V . 3 7 b a n d 38a

(which should h a v e formed one continuous verse as is found in other P u r ā n a s ) are

mentioned

in

AP.1.14,

BS.P.1.2.4-5 B V . P . I V . 1 3 3 . 6 , G P . I . 2 1 5 . 1 4 ,

K P . I . 1 . I 2 , S K . P . V I I . 2 . 8 4 and V P . I I I . 6 . 2 5 . A m a r a S i m h a (5th Cent. A . D . ) has recorded this verse in his Amara Kośa 1.6.5. Although these characteristics have been unanimously accepted as essential parts of the Purānas, ' T h e Purāna T e x t s that h a v e c o m e d o w n to us hardly conform to this definition"

(The

Hist, and Culture of the Indian People V o l . I I I P . 2 9 2 ) . If the original Purāna texts conformed to this description, the present texts of the Purānas must have been revised or mutilated during

their transmission.


I . I . 1.40-47

9

up of the story; the other sections are Anusañga ( C o n s e q u e n c e ) , Upodghāta ( I n t r o d u c t i o n ) a n d Upasamhāra (Conclusion). T h u s the four sections are briefly mentioned by m e . 40. I shall n a r r a t e t h e m in detail later on a n d in the proper order. At the outset, the P u r ā n a a m o n g the sacred scriptures, was h e a r d by B r a h m a . 1 4 1 . Thereafter, the Vedas c a m e out of his m o u t h s . Simi­ larly, the Vedāñgas (ancillary subjects), the D h a r m a ś ā s t r a s ( L a w codes), the sacred rites and holy observances (also c a m e out). 42. T h e n the decision 2 " I will create( the entire universe) beginning with Mahat ( t h e G r e a t Principle) a n d ending w i t h ViSesa (the p a r t i c u l a r creations of worldly o b j e c t s ) " by the unmanifest cause which is eternal a n d of the n a t u r e of Sat (Existent) and Asat (Non-existent). ^ 43-44. T h e golden (Cosmic} Egg a n d the excellent birth of B r a h m a ^ T h e Avarana ( T h e covering ' s h e a t h ' ) of the Egg (was) the ocean. T h e (covering) of the waters by the Tejas ( t h e fiery e l e m e n t ) . T h e (enclosure of the Tejas) by the gaseous element. T h e n the encircling of the gaseous element by the Ether. Its covering by Bhūtādi ( E g o ) . T h e Bhūtādi is encircled by Mahat ( T h e G r e a t Principle) a n d the Mahat is encircled by Avyakta ( T h e unmanifest o n e ) . 45. T h e Egg itself has been described as situated within the (enclosure of t h e ) elements. T h e a p p e a r a n c e of the rivers a n d the mountains"is described here. 46. T h e r e is the description of all the M a n v a n t a r a s a n d t h e K a l p a s . T h e n a r r a t i o n of the tree of B r a h m a n . T h e b i r t h of B r a h m a is t h e n recounted. 47. After this is t h e description of the creation of the 1.

T h e Purāna-writers claim their priority in

creation

superiority to the Vedas. T h a t some tract of literature called

and

hence

Purāna

existed

at the time of the Atharva V e d a is clear from A V . X I . 7 . 2 4 , X V . 1 . 6 , but

the

tall claim of being heard by g o d Brahma before he heard any śāstras before the creation of the V e d a is historically hardly justifiable. 2.

V V . 4 2 - 4 4 treat briefly the evolution of the universe obviously

on

the basis of Sāńkhya system. As the following topics are given as table of con­ tents their special explanations will be given in their respective chapters.


10

Brahmūnda PurSntt

subjects by B r a h m a . H e r e the Avasthās ( s i t u a t i o n s ) a r e descri­ bed, of god B r a h m a whose birth is unmanifest. 48. T h e occurrence of the K a l p a s ; the stabilisation of the Universe; H a r i ' s lying down in the waters a n d the uplift of the E a r t h . 49-50. T h e particular (description) of the cities etc., the classification of castes a n d stages of life. T h e positions of the stars and the planets a n d their transit from one Zodaical sign to a n o t h e r a n d the a b o d e of the Siddhas a n d their distance in yojanas in details a n d the allocation of places in the heaven to m e n of auspicious conduct. 5 1 . T h e n a r r a t i o n of (the different species of) trees, medicinal herbs a n d creepers. T h e two paths viz. of the Devatās (deities) a n d of the sages are ( t h e n ) described. 52. T h e creation and manifestation of M a n g o a n d other trees. T h e origin of animals a n d h u m a n beings is ( t h e n ) narrated. 53. T h e definition as well as its total components of K a l p a are m e n t i o n e d . T h e n the nine types of intentional creations by god B r a h m a are described. 54. T h r e e of the intentional creations (are m e n t i o n e d in d e t a i l s ) . T h e a r r a n g e m e n t of the worlds. T h e origin of D h a r m a etc. from the limbs of B r a h m a . 55. ( T h e description of) the twelve t h a t a r e b o r n again a n d again in the Prajākalpa; Pratisandhi ( t h e period of transi­ t i o n ) between two K a l p a s is m e n t i o n e d . 56. T h e origin of A d h a r m a due to god Brahma's enve­ l o p m e n t by T a m a s a n d the creation .of P u r u s a from his ( B r a h m a ' s ) b o d y with p r e p o n d e r a n c e of Sattva g u n a . 57. Similarly, (the b i r t h o f Ś a t a r ū p ā ) a n d the birth of the two sons, viz. Priyavrata, U t t ā n a p ā d a as well as t h a t of the auspicious Prasūti a n d Akrti (Ākūti) . 58. Those who h a d rid themselves of sins a n d are well established themselves in the t h r e e worlds are glorified. After­ wards t h e b i r t h of twins in Akūti from Ruci, the Prajāpati. 59-60. T h e auspicious births of Daksa's d a u g h t e r s from Prasūti. T h e n the p r o c r e a t i o n b y t h e great-souled D h a r m a from Daksa's d a u g h t e r s like Śabdā ( r a t h e r Ś r a d d h ā as in.


11

I.I.1.61-69

Vāyu P.), a race characterised by S a t t v a - g u n a a n d was ( a s if) t h e d a w n (?) of happiness : As well as the r a c e of A d h a r m a ( E v i l ) from Hirhsā (Violence) characterised by T a m o - g u n a a n d inauspiciousness. 6 1 . T h e description of t h e creation of subjects by Bhrgu a n d o t h e r sages, where-in t h e lineage of the B r ā h m a n a sage Vasistha is recounted. 62. T h e b i r t h of t h e p r o g e n y of Agni from S v ā h ā is recounted t h e r e . Thereafter, t h e b i r t h of subjects of the two types of Pitrs in S v a d h ā (is also m e n t i o n e d ) . 63-64. In t h e context of the description of t h e line of t h e Pitrs, t h e curse of D a k s a by M a h e ś v a r a , Satī a n d Bhrgu a n d other intelligent ones, (is m e n t i o n e d ) . So also the r e t u r n curse u t t e r e d b y D a k s a . T h e protest against the e n m i t y b y R u d r a of wonderful feats, because defects were seen is described. 65. I n t h e context o f M a n v a n t a r a s , T i m e (with its u n i t s ) is recounted in detail. T h e auspicious characteristics of t h e d a u g h e r of K a r d a m a , the Prajāpati. 66. T h e details of the sons of P r i y a v r a t a a r e described t h e r e . T h e i r a p p o i n t m e n t on different continents a n d l a n d s severally (are r e c o u n t e d ) . 67. T h e n a r r a t i o n of t h e creation of S v ā y a m b h u v a ( M a n u ) . So also t h e description of the Varsas (sub-continents) a n d rivers a n d t h e i r different types. 68. H o w thousands of t h e different continents com­ prise t h e g r o u p of seven Dvīpas. T h e detailed description of the M a n d a l a (Encircling z o n e ) o f J a m b ū d v ī p a a n d t h e ocean. 69. T h e m a g n i t u d e a n d extent o f t h e J a m b ū d v ī p a , t h e ocean a n d t h e m o u n t a ins, is m e n t i o n e d in t h e form of Yojanas ( ' Y o j a n a = 12 K m s ) . T h e following seven m o u n t a i n s , 1 viz. 1.

T h e m o u n t a i n system of the Purānas as

recorded

here

is repre­

sented under the following n a m e s t o d a y : (i)

H i m a v ā n — T h e great H i m a l a y a n

Range.

(ii)

Hemakūta—Ladakh—Kailash—Trans-Himalayan

(iii)

Nisadha—Hindukush—Kunlun

(iv)

Meru—The

(v)

Nila.

Pamirs.

chain.

chain.


12

Brahmānda Purāna

H i m a v ā n , H e m a k ū t a , Nisadha, M e r u , Nila, Śveta a n d Śrñgin, a r e glorified. 70-73. T h e distance between pairs of these, the girth, height and extent of these mountains, all these are mentioned is so m a n y Yojanas. T h e inhabitants of these mountains are recounted. B h ā r a t a a n d other sub-continents are described, alongwith the rivers a n d m o u n t a i n s therein. H o w they are inhabited by the mobile a n d the immobile living beings. J a m ­ būdvīpa a n d other islands (continents) are surrounded by seven oceans. Thereafter the golden e a r t h a n d Lokāloka ( m o u n t a i n ) is described. These worlds have definite extents a n d magnitudes, consist of seven continents. 74. R ū p a (form, colour) etc. are described because they are also m a d e alongwith the P r ā k r t a s (effects of the P r a k r t i ) . All these a r e partial transformation of the P r a d h ā n a . 75. T h e m o v e m e n t , extent etc. of the sun, the moon a n d the e a r t h a r e succinctly yet completely stated (without leaving out anything of i m p o r t a n c e ) . 76-77. T h e dtmerttions are mentioned. T h e extent of these is m e n t i o n e d in so m a n y Yojanas. M a h e n d r a and other splendid a n d sacred ( m o u n t a i n s ) on the summit n o r t h of the M ā n a s a lake (are described) along with t h e present beings that are in possession of t h e m a n d t h a t identify themselves with them. T h e sun's movement above these, like a firebrand moving in a circle, has been mentioned. T h e characteristics of Nāgavīthi a n d Aksavīthi a r e m e n t i o n e d . 78. T h e description of the two kāsthās (kosfha—amisprint) quarters (or courses of w i n d s ) , the two Lekhas, horizons (or Lekhas—deities) a n d the zones in Yojanas; of the Lokāloka ( m o u n t a i n ) of the twilight, of the d a y a n d of the Visuvat (Equinox). (vi) (vii)

Śveta—Nura

Tau—Turkistan-Atbashi

Śrńgin or Ś r ń g a v ā n — K a r a

chain

T a u — K i r g h i z - K e t m a n chain. (For

details vide M.Ali—Geog. of the Purānas C h . I I I ) T h e progressive contraction of Bhārata up to 1947 A . D . blinds us to the fact that a large part of w h a t is Central Asia today was an integral part of the B h ā r a t a of the Puranic world.


I.I.1.79-89

13

79. T h e Lokapālas (guardians of t h e q u a r t e r s ) w h o stay on it in t h e four q u a r t e r s a r e described. T h e southern a n d t h e n o r t h e r n path-ways of t h e Pitrs ( m a n e s ) a n d gods (are described). 80. ( T h e goal) of householders a n d those w h o r e n o u n c e (i.e. sannyāsins) d e p e n d e n t on Rajas a n d Sattva ( i s m e n t i o n e d ) . T h e region of Visnu w h e r e D h a r m a a n d others a r e stationed is m e n t i o n e d . 8 1 . T h e movement of the sun a n d t h e m o o n as well as t h a t of t h e planets a n d luminaries is described. It has t h e efficacy of according auspiciousness as well as inauspiciousness to t h e subjects. 82-83. T h e chariot of t h e sun built by B r a h m a him­ self for t h e sake of a dwelling u n t o t h e sun is m e n t i o n e d . T h e chariot whereby t h e lord goes to his abode from t h e heaven is presided over by t h e Devas, the Adityas, t h e sages, t h e G a n dharvas, t h e Apsaras, the G r ā m a n ī s , t h e serpents a n d t h e Rāksasas. 84. T h e Rasa (juice) t h a t exudes from t h e chariot evolved out of t h e essence of the waters, is m e n t i o n e d : T h e waxing a n d t h e w a n i n g of t h e m o o n caused by S o m a are mentioned. 85. T h e m o v e m e n t of t h e chariots of t h e sun a n d others begins from D h r u v a ( t h e pole s t a r ) . T h e heavenly porpoise a t t h e tail end of which t h e pole star is stationed is also described. 86. All t h e constellations of stars along w i t h t h e planets wherein t h e gods of meritorious acts h a v e their abodes are described. 87. T h e t h o u s a n d rays of t h e sun, t h e asylum of rain, chillness a n d h e a t , t h e different classes of rays w i t h reference to names, functions a n d places of o p e r a t i o n — ( a l l these a r e mentioned). 8 8 . T h e m a g n i t u d e a n d t h e m o v e m e n t o f t h e planets d e p e n d i n g on t h e sun a r e m e n t i o n e d . T h e origin of t h e Mahat ( G r e a t P r i n c i p l e ) from t h e Pradhāna, t h e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of which are c o m p a r e d to SL d a n c i n g girl. 89. T h e n a r r a t i o n of t h e greatness of P u r u r a v a s , the son of Ilā. T h e greatness of t h e Pitrs of two types as well as t h a t of the d e a d .


14

Brahmānda Purāna

90-91. T h e n t h e Parvans ( i m p o r t a n t days in the transit of t h e m o o n such as first q u a r t e r , full m o o n , last q u a r t e r , New m o o n ) as well as t h e Sandhis ( j u n c t i o n s ) , of t h e Parvans are n a r r a t e d . T h e great blessing of the two types of Pitrs by m e a n s of Śrāddha; t h e Pitrs w h o h a v e gone to t h e heaven a n d those w h o have h a d a downfall. T h e i r n u m b e r a n d extent of Yugas as well as t h e Yuga called K r t a are described. 92. T h e introduction and c o m m e n c e m e n t of agricultural activities e t c . as m e a n s of livelihood in t h e T r e t ā y u g a as a result of the lowering of s t a n d a r d s ; t h e establishment of castes a n d stages of life b a s e d on D h a r m a ( d u t y ) . 93. Establishment of t h e institution of Yajña*. T h e conversation of Vasu a n d the sages; t h e downfall of Vasu—all these a r e recounted * *. 94. T h e penance is praised a n d so also the situations of the Yugas entirely. T h e succinct description of the D v ā p a r a a n d K a l i ages. 95. M a n v a n t a r a is recounted a n d its n u m b e r (of years) is n a r r a t e d according to h u m a n calculation. T h i s alone is t h e characteristic feature of all M a n v a n t a r a s . 96. T h e past, present a n d future M a n v a n t a r a s are recounted. So also is t h e definition of Pratisandhāna (Period of transition between two M a n v a n t a r a s ) . 97. T h e past a n d the future (reigning members) in the S v ā y a m b h u v a ( M a n v a n t a r a ) are r e c o u n t e d . T h e m o v e m e n t o f the sages is mentioned. So also t h e way of t h e knowledge of Kāla (Time). 98. T h e extent of t h e n u m b e r of D u r g a s (fortresses) a n d t h e c o m m e n c e m e n t a n d t h e different professions for livelihood in the Yugas ; t h e b i r t h a n d characteristic features of t h e emperors in the T r e t ā . •

This v e r s e = V ā . P . ( V ā y u Purāna) 1.111, but it

tana. This baseless **

is

reads

the proper reading a n d h e n c e accepted, as

and h e n c e probably

Tajña-Pravar-

Vajra-Pravartana is

a misprint.

T h e text translated a b o v e : Sabdatvarh ca Pradhānāt tu Sviyambhuvam

ii$ Manum is confusing. T h i s v e r s e = V ā . P . 1.112 w h i c h however gives a better reading: PraSnānām

durvacastoam

ca

svāyambhuvam

rtt

Manum

/


1.1.1.99-UO

15

99. T h e b i r t h of P r a m a t i ; the d i m i n u t i o n by Ańgulas of the living beings in the K a l i y u g a — t h e s e a r e m e n t i o n e d . 100. T h e e n u m e r a t i o n of the different Śākhās (Branches) of t h e V e d a s ; t h e i m p o r t a n c e of the disciples ; t h e seven types ofVākyas (sentences) a n d n a r r a t i o n of the spiritual lines of the sages. 101. T h e characteristic features of the sons of charioteers a n d those of t h e B r ā h m a n a s (are described) in full. T h e classi­ fication of the Vedas by t h e noble-souled Vedavyāsa (is also given). 102. T h e n a r r a t i o n of the Devas a n d the lords of subjects in the M a n v a n t a r a s ; the d u e order of the M a n v a n t a r a s and t h e knowledge of K ā l a ( T i m e ) : all these are recounted. 103-104. T h e grandsons of Daksa ; the splendid progeny of his beloved d a u g h t e r ; the children procreated by B r a h m a a n d others a n d the children begot by t h e intelligent D a k s a ; the S ā v a r n a M a n u s who h a d resorted to M e r u are also recounted here. T h e description of the creation of subjects by D h r u v a , the son of U t t ā n a p ā d a . 105. T h e creative activity of Cāksusa M a n u , the descrip­ tion of the prowess of the subjects; the act of milking the e a r t h by the lord ( K i n g P r t h u ) , t h e son of Vena. 106. T h e special m e n t i o n of the vessels, milks and calves; (the fact) t h a t this e a r t h h a d already been milked by B r a h m a and others. 107. T h e birth of D a k s a the intelligent Prajāpati from the ten Pracetasas in M ā r i s ā as occurring t h r o u g h e q u a l p a r t of everyone of t h e m is described. 108. T h e lordship over the past, present and future things of M a h e n d r a s is recounted. T h e M a n u s a n d others who are covered with M a n u narratives will be described. 109. T h e detailed creative activity of Vaivasvata M a n u is recounted. T h e origin of Bhrgu a n d others in the V e s t u r e s * of Brahma a n d others is n a r r a t e d . 110. As distinguished from t h e splendid Prajāsarga (creation of the subjects) of Cāksusa M a n u , t h e creation t h r o u g h *

Vā.P. 1.128 reads Brahma-Śukrāt 'from the semen of g o d Brahma'.


16

Brahmānda Purāna

meditation by Daksa in the Vaivasvata M a n v a n t a r a is recounted^ 111. N ā r a d a , the m e n t a l son of Brahma, engaged t h e extremely powerful sons of Daksa in convex sation and destroyed t h e m and was cursed (as a r e s u l t ) . 112. T h e r e u p o n Daksa begot t h e well-known daughters n a m e d V a i r i n ā s . * T h e birth of M a r u t in the n o b l e lady Diti in the course of the continuous blowing of t h e w i n d . * * 113. T h e seven times seven (49) groups of M a r u t s are recounted here. T h e y acquired Devatva (state of being Devas) because of their staying a l o n g w i t h I n d r a . T h e i r residence is the shoulders (?) of V ā y u ( ? ) . 114-115. T h e origin of t h e Daityas, D ā n a v a s , Yaksas, G a n d h a r v a s , Rāksasas, ghosts a n d evil spirits, of the Yaksas, birds, creepers etc. is ' recounted. T h e origin of the Apsaras is n a r r a t e d in great details. T h e entire sphere of t h e sun is described a n d also the b i r t h of the e l e p h a n t Airāvata. 116. T h e b i r t h of V a i n a t e y a ( G a r u d a ) as well as his installation as a K ng (of b i r d s ) . T h e detailed narratives of t h e (races of) Bhrgus a n d t h e Ańgiras a r e recounted. 117. T h e detailed description of t h e progeny of K ā ś yapa, Pulastya, noble-souled Atri a n d sage P a r ā ś a r a . 118. T h r e e girls in w h o m t h e worlds are stabilised are glorified. T h e detailed description of I c c h ā * * * of Āditya (is found) thereafter. • 119. T h e story of K i n k u v i t j is m e n t i o n e d . T h e an­ nihilation of B r h a d b a l a s by D h r u v a J is m e n t i o n e d . Iksvāku a n d others are glorified briefly. 120. T h e creation of the king Nisi etc. is mentioned in detail along with P a l ā n d u h a r a n a e t c ; t h e story of the king Yayāti's r a c e : * **

begot from V i r i n i — V ā . P . l . 1 3 1 . Vā.P.

1.133,

reads:

Mirul-Prasāda.

* * * T o be a m e n d e d as Ilā as in Vā.P.1.141 as there is no person called I c c h ā in this context in (he Purūnas. f

(Vińkuksi in VA.P.)

X

Vā.P.I.141b-142a reads:

'The

destruction of D h u n d h u ,

Iksvāku

a n d others ending w i t h B hadbala are described ? D h r u v a is not credited w i t h destroying Brhadbalas, vide P E . (Puranic encyclopaedia on D h r u v a & Brhadbala.)


I.I.I.121-131

17

121. T h e description o f Y a d u ' s r a c e a n d t h e detailed n a r r a t i o n of H a i h a y a after K r o d h a . * Afterwards t h e details of t h e race are m e n t i o n e d . 122. T h e greatness of J y ā m a g h a and his creation of subjects is recounted. So also of D e v a v r d h a , A n d h a k a a n d noble-souled D h r s t i . 123-124. T h e lineage of A n i m i t r a ; t h e false accusation of t h e two V a i ś y a s ; * * T h e ascertainment a n d t h e acqui­ sition of t h e jewel by the intelligent S a t r ā j i t ; in t h e course of t h e creation of progeny by t h e saintly K i n g D e v a m ī d h v a n , the birth a n d story of t h e noble-souled Śūra is m e n t i o n e d . 125. T h e wickedness of Kariisa a n d t h e b i r t h of Vasudeva Visnu of u n m e a s u r e d splendour in Devakī, d u e to t h e unification of t h e families ( ? ) * * * 126-127. Afterwards t h e creative activity of t h e sages; the description of t h e creation of the subjects; w h e n t h e war of t h e Devas a n d t h e Asuras s t a r t e d ; a w o m a n was slain by Visnu while protecting Śakra from d e a t h a n d a curse was obtained by him from Bhrgu. Bhrgu resuscitated the divine m o t h e r of Śukra. 128. D u e to the concurrence of t h e Devas a n d t h e sages twelve battles were c o n d u c t e d . 1 N a r a s i m h a a n d others, t h e destroyers of sins are glorified. 129. T h e propitiation o f S t h ā n u (Śiva) by Śukra by m e a n s of severe penance. Śarva eulogised by h i m who was cut off (krtta) for boons. 2 130-131. Afterwards t h e m a t e r i a l activity of t h e Devas a n d the Asuras is recounted. W h e n t h e noble-souled Śukra was a t t a c h e d to J a y a n t ī , t h e intelligent Brhaspati, assuming t h e form of Śukra deluded Asuras for which a c t Śukra cursed Brhaspati. f * T h i s should be K r o s t u a n d not K r o d h a vide V ā . P . 1 . 1 4 4 . ** Vā P. 1.146. (in identical verse) reads: Vifnor divyābhiSarhsanam, ' T h e divine e u l o g y of g o d Visnu'. * * * V ā . P . 1 . 1 4 8 reads: 'ekāntena'. 1. V ā . P . 1 . 1 5 1 (identical w i t h this verse) reads: T w e l v e wonderful battles between gods and demons. 2. V ā . P . 1 . 1 5 2 readsiVaradānaugha-lubdhena 'extremely desirous of getting boons). f T h e corrupt text has resulted in this confused version. It should be as V ā . P . l . 1 5 3 - 1 5 4 reads:


Brahmānda Purāna

18

132-34. T h e greatness of Visnu is n a r r a t e d . It is express­ ed at the b i r t h (i.e. i n c a r n a t i o n ) of lord Visnu. T u r vasu w h o was t h e younger brother of Y a d u was t h e grandson (of Śukra) . A n u , D r u h y u and others as well as their sons ( w h o were) t h e kings a r e described. T h e descendants of A n u were noble-souled. Excellent kings a m o n g t h e m are fully described. T h e y h a d plenty of wealth a n d their splendour was m u c h . Ātithya (hospitality) to a Brahmanical sage is classified i n t o seven as resorting to D h a r m a . 135. T h e r e t h e curse of Brhaspati by the poets 1 (?) is described. T h e fame of H a r a ' s ( H a r i ' s ) family is slightly tou­ ched. Ś a n t a n u ' s prowess is explained. 136. In t h e concluding portion, the future kings are recounted. T h e description of t h e groups of lords, yet to come, is given in detail. 137. T h e description of t h e annihilation of all, when K a l i y u g a expires at the end of t h e Bhautya m a n v a n t a r a (?). T h e annihilation is divided into Naimittika (at t h e end of a K a l p a ) Prākrtika (after two parārdha years w h e n B r a h m a dies and Ātyantika ( w h e n t h e individual soul merges in the Brahman.) 138. T h e re-absorption a n d dissolution of all living be­ ings in various ways is described. Anāvrsti (absence of r a i n ) a n d t h e terrible S a m v a r t a k a fire of the sun (are m e n t i o n e d ) . 139. (The description of Prākrtika Pralaya is described in t h e S ā m k h y a system of philosophy. T h e n B r a h m a n (is ex-

Jayantyā saha saktt tuyatra Sukre mahātmani / Aswan mohayāmisa Śukrarūpena buddhimān \\ Brhaspatis tu tarn Śukrah śaSāpa sumah&dyutih jj ' W h e n the noble-souled Śukra was attached to Jayanti, the

clever

Brhaspati, assuming the form of Śukra, deluded Asuras for w h i c h act Śukra cursed

Brhaspati'

The

story of the love-affair between Śukra a n d J a y a n t i a n d her subse­

q u e n t marriage w i t h h i m are m e n t i o n e d in other Purānas vide PE p. 3 5 5 , PGK

p. 3 6 5 . 1.

T h e corresponding verse in V ā . P. 1,158 is as follows: Bārhaspatyarh tu surabhir yatra Sāpam ihānudat j Kirtanam Jahnu-vamSasya Śantanor vlrya-sabdanam //


1.1.1.140-147

19

plained) particularly. T h e description of the seven worlds beginning w i t h Bhū. 140. T h e definition is explained by means of P a r a , P a r ā r d h a a n d Apara (?) of the B r a h m a n . T h e fixation of the extent a n d m a g n i t u d e o f B r a h m ā ( ? ) in so m a n y Yojanas. 141. H e r e the hells of the sinners such as R a u r a v a etc. a r e mentioned. T h e ultimate sequel of all living beings is deci­ sively fixed. 142. T h e description of the worldly existence through the Pratisarhsarga (secondary creation) of B r a h m a . T h e move­ ment upwards or downwards as dependent on virtue or evil has been m e n t i o n e d . 143. T h e annihilation of great Bhūtas (elements )in every K a l p a . T h e miseries are i n n u m e r a b l e . Even god Brahma is not eternal. 144. T h e wickedness of worldly pleasures, the p a i n in the course of worldly existence. 1 T h e inaccessibility of salva­ tion (except) t h r o u g h Vairāgya (absence of passion) because defects are seen. 145. (One) abandons the Sattva (living beings) whether manifest or unmanifest a n d is established in the B r a h m a n . Since multiplicity is seen, t h e idea of purity (of the world) recedes. 146. T h e n ( t h e devotee) becomes afraid of the three types of Tāpa (distresses) arising from Rūpa a n d Artha (forms a n d objects). 2 He then becomes Nirañjana (unsullied). After obtaining the bliss of B r a h m a n , he is not afraid of anything. 147. Again the creation by another Brahma as before, is recounted. T h e Vikriyās (changes) of the universe such as crea­ tion a n d annihilation are described.

It was Surabhi (the heavenly c o w ) family of king J a h n u is glorified.

which

uttered

the

curse;

1. Sathhāra emended as Samsāra, otherwise it w o u l d m e a n 'Pain annihilation'.

the of

2. T h e corresponding verse in V ā . P . 1.171 gives a better reading: tatas tāpatrayātīto nirūpākhyo nirañjanah j ' T h e n he transcends three types of miseries a n d he is called formless a n d free from blemishes ( p u r e ) ' .


20

Brahmānda Purāna

148. T h e activities of the living beings t h a t a r e b o r n a n d the fruits (they obtain) a r e described. T h e n t h e creation of the groups of sages is described. It is destructive of sins. 149-150. T h e a p p e a r a n c e of Vasistha a n d the birth of Śakti. His grasping of the b o n e of Ś a u d ā s a 1 as b r o u g h t about by Viśvāmitra. T h e b i r t h of t h e eminent P a r ā ś a r a from Adrśyantī. T h e holy lord, t h e great sage was b o r n of P i t r k a n y ā a n d the holy sage ( P a r ā ś a r a ) . 151. T h e b i r t h of Śuka. T h e h a t r e d towards sage Viśvāmitra of t h e intelligent P a r ā ś a r a along with his son. 152-154. T h e collection of Agni (fire) by Vasistha w i t h a desire to kill Viśvāmitra. T h e (hindrance to i t ) by lord vidhi (Brahma) w h o was t h e well-wisher of V i ś v ā m i t r a as well as by t h e intelligent lord G ī r n a s k a n d h a 2 (?) for t h e sake of a child. W i t h the blessings of Śarva ( Ś i v a ) , t h e saintly lord Vyāsa split one V e d a of four quarters into four V e d a s . M a n y b r a n c h e s of t h e V e d a s were evolved by his disciples a n d t h e i r disciples. 155-159a. (Defective text) T h e y did not t r e m b l e in mak­ i n g p r a c t i c a l use of t h e Vedas. W h e n they were seen by Svayam b h u ( B r a h m a ) those excellent sages desirous of D h a r m a a n d wishing to get a holy p l a c e , asked him. T h e lord w h o wished for their welfare told t h e m like this : " T h e n a v e of this wheel is excellent. Its b e a u t y a n d splendour is divine. It has seven spokes. It is i n c o m p a r a b l e a n d praise-worthy. As it rolls d o w n , all of you follow it alertly, watchfully. T h e n y o u will r e a c h a place where this is broken. T h a t place where t h e r i m of this wheel is broken is a holy land. It should be considered sacred."3 1.

Saudāsāsthi-grahaścāsya in this text is contrary to facts. It was Sau-

dāsa ( K i n g K a l m ā s a p ā d a as a d e m o n ) w h o devoured Śakti (Vasisfha's eldest son) at the instigation of V i ś v ā m i t r a . H e n c e the better reading is in V ā . P . in the. corresponding verse

1-175a viz.

Saudāsān nigrahas

tasya

Viśvāmitra-

kftena ca j 2.

V ā . P . 1.178a reads: Cīrnā Skandena dhīmatā ' I t

( T h e V e d a ? ) was

divided by the intelligent Lord Skanda for the sake of its continuity'. 3.

A popular etymology of ftTaimifāranya vide n o t e 2 p. 8.


I.I.I.159b-171

21

After saying this to all those sages, he b e c a m e invisible. 159b-160. T h e sages of Naimisa forest performed a S a t r a there taking only Tava ( b a r l e y ) as their food along with the w a t e r of G a ń g ā . 161. W h e n S a r a d v ā n died, he was resuscitated, as the sages of N a i m i s a forest were endowed with great kindness. 162. T h e y m a d e this e a r t h boundless. T h e y b r o u g h t K r s n a as king. W i t h great pleasure, a n d hospitality, the king was received a n d h o n o u r e d duly. 163. S v a r b h ā n u , the cruel Asura, c a m e within the S a t r a a n d a b d u c t e d the king. W h e n the king vanished, the sages followed h i m . 164. T h e y saw h i m protected by a G a n d h a r v a a n d abid­ 1 ing in the village n a m e d K a l ā p a . Again the Yajña was begun by the great sages. 165. On seeing everything golden, he h a d an a r g u m e n t w i t h t h e m in the Satra that lasted for twelve years a n d performed by the sages of N a i m i s a . 166-167. Y a d u was installed by them even as they were arguing. After the son of Y a d u , Ayuta was born in the forest. T h e y concluded the Satra a n d began to worship V ā y u . This is the Krtyasamuddeśa (enumeration of contents of the P u r ā n a ) . T h e p a r t of the P u r ā n a has been described. 168. T h e P u r ā n a comes to light in this order alone. Even a great topic is understood easily if m e n t i o n e d briefly. 169-170a. After m e n t i o n i n g the brief outline, I shall now n a r r a t e the details to you. If a person, after conquering t h e sense organs, learns this first Pāda (section) very well, there is no d o u b t a b o u t it t h a t the entire P u r ā n a has been u n d e r ­ stood by h i m . 170b-171. O B r ā h m a n a s , he who knows t h e four Vedas with their ancillary subjects a n d the U p a n i s a d s must increase his knowledge of V e d a t h r o u g h Itihāsas a n d P u r ā n a s . T h e

1. A village in the H i m a l a y a s near Badarikāśrama where M a r u a n d Devāpi, the last kings of the Solar a n d Lunar races respectively performed p e n a n c e to reappear again as kings of Ayodhyā a n d Hastinapur after Kalki. — D e , p. 74.


22

Brahmānda Purāna

V e d a is afraid of a m a n of incomplete knowledge saying "O this m a n will strike m e . " 1 172-174. R e p e a t e d l y learning this c h a p t e r t h a t h a d been directly m e n t i o n e d by the self-born lord B r a h m a one shall never lose sense after getting into an adversity. He will a t t a i n such a goal (hereafter) as is desired by him. Since this h a d been (in existence) before also (Purā api), it is remembered as P u r ā n a m . 2 He who u n d e r s t a n d s the ety­ mological i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of this, is rid of all sins. H e n c e , listen to this summary. N ā r ā y a n a creates the world. It is on t h a t occasion of creation w h e n he makes this entire P u r ā n a . It does not remain at the time of annihilation.

CHAPTER TWO The Legend of Naimisāranya [Greedy K i n g Pururavas killed while confiscating the Golden a l t a r : Prince Ayu installed as K i n g : sages conciliated] 1-3. Those sages who considered the austerities as their wealth asked Sūta once a g a i n : — " W h e r e did t h a t Sattra (sacri­ ficial session) of those persons of miraculous deeds take place ? H o w long did it c o n t i n u e ? H o w was it performed ? H o w d i d P r a b h a ñ j a n a (the Windgod) recount th? P u r ā n a ? R e c o u n t it in detail as we have great eagerness to hear i t " . T h u s urged, S ū t a replied t h e following auspicious (narrative) : 1.

words

= M b h . Adi. 1.267b-268a. T h i s is the traditional stand of Purānas

regarding their indispensability. It is justifiable to some extent as they pre­ serve the unbroken Brahmanical tradition from the V e d a s a n d are some-times useful in interpretation as in Ahalyāyai jārah jaghānendrah 2.

(Śatapatha

1.2.3.2

(Śatapatha 3.3.4.18) or Viivarūpam

etc.).

A popular etymology of the word Purāna.


I.I.2.4-12

23

4. " L i s t e n to the narration as to where those selfpossessed ones performed t h e excellent Sattra, how long it continued a n d how it was performed. 5-7. Desirous of creating the universe formerly, he ( B r a h m a ) discharged (everything) to those who performed the Tajña. T h e y performed the highly meritorious S a t t r a for a thousand years. B r a h m a himself became the Tapogrhapati (Lord of the p e n a n c e h o u s e ) . I d a accepted the status of the Patni (wife of the sponsor of the sacrifice). T h e intelligent M r t y u of great splendour performed the Śāmilra rite ( t h e act of killing t h e sacrificial a n i m a l ) in that Sattra of those noble souls. T h e Vibudhas (Devas) stayed there for a thousand years. 8. T h e place where t h e rim of the whirling Dharmacakra (wheel of righteousness) broke down b e c a m e well known as 1 Naimisa on a c c o u n t of t h a t event. It is a place well-worshipped by t h e sages. 9-10. It is t h e place w h e r e t h e holy G o m a t i river is resorted to by Siddhas a n d C ā r a n a s . T h e G o m a t i h a d a d a u g h t e r in a trice a n d t h a t is the Rohinī. Śakti b e c a m e t h e eldest son of the noble-souled Vasistha a n d A r u n d h a t ī of excellent brilliance* (?) 11. It is t h e place where K i n g K a l m ā s a p ā d a a n d Ś a k r a * * met Śakti. It is the place where enmity broke out between Viśvāmitra a n d Vasistha. 12. It is t h e p l a c e w h e r e sage P a r ā ś a r a was b o r n of Adrśyantī. Against his knowledge, Vasistha h a d to court discomfiture. 2 1. V i d e Ch. 1, p. 8 note 2. It appears that the Bd.P. regards Nimsar near the Gomati as the original Naimisāranya. * T h e t e x t : Sutāyātrādānam uttamatejasah is confusing. Vā.P.2.10 in identical verse reads: Śakti-jyesfhāh samabhavan Vasisthasya mahātmanah j Arundhyatyāh sutā yatra śatam utlama-Ujasah jj ' T h e r e a hundred sons of excellent brilliance of w h o m Śakti was t h e eldest, were born of the noble-souled Vasistha from Arundhati" , ** V ā . P . 2.11 (identical with this N o . 11—verse) reads: 'śaplah' for Sakrah. It m e a n s : It is a place where king K a l m ā s a p ā d a was cursed by Śakti. 2. Parās'ara, while in his mother's (Adrśyantī's) womb, was such a great V e d i c scholar that he surpassed his grandfather Vasistha ( M b h . Adi176.12-15.)


24

Brahmānda Purāna

13. T h e e x p o u n d e r s of B r a h m a n t h o u g h t of a m o u n t a i n in Naimisa at t h a t spot. Since they were born ( r a t h e r — p e r f o r m e d sacrifice—Vā.P.2.13) in N a i m i s a , they are r e m e m b e r e d as Naimisīyas. 14. T h e Sattra of those intelligent persons lasted for twelve years, w h e n the Valorous P u r u r a v a s Was ruling over the e a r t h . 15. We have h e a r d the report that, even when he en­ j o y e d e i g h t e e n islands over the. ocean, P u r u r a v a s was never contented w i t h the jewels, d u e to his covetousness. 16. U r g e d by a divine messenger, Urvaśī m a d e love to h i m . He sponsored this Sattra in t h e c o m p a n y of Urvaśī. 17-19. While K i n g Pururavas ruled, the sages of the Naimisa forest performed t h e sacrificial session.* T h e G a ń g ā conceived a brilliant foetus from the Fire-god. She deposited it on t h e m o u n t a i n a n d it was transformed i n t o gold. G o d Viśvakarmā himself, the god of great imagination who evolved the world, entered t h a t sacrificial session of those sages of u n b o u n d e d (immense) lustre ( a n d ) transformed t h e premises a n d enclosure of the sacrifice i n t o a golden one. 20-21. Pururavas, t h e son of I d a c a m e a-hunting to t h a t region. Seeing t h a t extremely wonderful enclosed place of the sacrifice m a d e of gold, his wisdom was overcome (lit. struck down) by avarice a n d he began to seize it. T h e r e u p o n the residents of N a i m i s a b e c a m e very m u c h infuriated against the king. 22-23. T h e angry learned ascetics ( w h o were devoted to p e n a n c e ) urged by the Devas hit him with K u ś a grasses, charged with t h u n d e r b o l t . P o u n d e d by the a d a m a n t i n e Kuśa 1 grasses t h a t king cast off his m o r t a l body. T h e son of Urvaśī,

* 1.

satre

e m e n d e d as satram (as in V ā . P . 2.17,

an

identical

verse).

This account of Pururavas' death recorded here appears to be correct

historically. Pururavas

was

a

chief from

trans-Himalayan

region—Ilāvrta

varsa, the region round M t . M e r u bounded by M t . G a n d h a m ā d a n a on

the

west and M ā l y a v ā n on the east. He established his kingdom at Pratisthāna (modern Jhusi near A l l a h a b a d ) a n d founded the famous Lunar dynasty. H i s greed for w e a l t h and his attempt to plunder the sacrificial session is recorded in the M b h . Ādi.75.20-23. As he c a m e there a-hunting (and n o t with an army


I.I.2.24-31

25

fought there on the g r o u n d .

1

24-26. Ayus, t h e righteous r u l e r of the e a r t h w h o m they call t h e noblesouled father of N a h u s a , o b t a i n e d a high priority a m o n g those who got purificatory b a t h i n t h e p r i n c i p a l sacrifice of t h a t sacrificial session. H a v i n g pacified t h e K i n g t h a t way, t h e sages, t h e knowers of B r a h m a n , w h o themselves were the m ū r t i s (idols) of t h e calves of the cow in t h e form of the e a r t h 2 ( ? ) , began to perform t h e sacrificial session. In this sattra, t h e noble-souled ones observed celibacy. 27-31. T h e y observed Brahmacarya as in t h e case of Viśvasrjs (creators of t h e universe) formerly, when they were desirous of creating the universe. T h e king b e c a m e endowed with the lustre of t h e sun a n d t h e fire. He shone like I n d r a with t h e sages a n d others a r o u n d h i m , such as t h e anchorites Vālakhilyas fond of their friends, Marīcis; the u n b o r n sages 3 , T h e y worshipped t h e Devas with h y m n s of praise a n d houses ( ? ) a n d t h e Pitrs by means of t h e holy rites befitting t h e Pitrs.

for c o n q u e s t ) , it is more probable that he was overwhelmed by the sages a n d g o t killed in the scuffle. T h e sages' curse a n d the bringing of fire from heaven etc. described in the M b h . is obviously a white-wash by its

the

author as

the episode concerned the founder of the Lunar dynasty to w h i c h P ā n d a v a s belonged. T h e sages wisely installed his son Āyus w h o , like a farsighted states­ m a n trying to consolidate the newly-founded kingdom, e x t e n d e d his patro­ n a g e to the sacrificial session. T h e Bd.P. version is supported by V ā . P . 1.

T h e t e x t : aurvaśeyais tatas tasya yuddham cakre nrpo bhuvi, is syntactically

n o t correct. M o r e o v e r Ayu, the son of Pururavas a n d Urvaśī w h o succeeded h i m is not k n o w n to h a v e fought w i t h the sages. Vā.P.2.23b

(a

corresponding

verse

reads:)

aurvaieyarh tatas tasya putrarh cakrur nrparh bhuvi ' T h e n they m a d e h i s son born of Urvaśī the king over the earth'. 2. ing

For Prthvi vatsātma-mūrtayah in this text, c p . V ā . P . 2 . 2 6 ( a correspond­

verse r e a d s ) :

(satram ārebhire karturh) yathāvad dharma-bhūtaye 'according

to prescribed rites for the prosperity of D h a r m a ' . 3.

T h e reading of these stanzas in Vā.P.2.27/29a. : Vaikhānasaih anyaiica

priya-sakhair

munibhir

jus

(am

Vālakhilyair

marīcikaih

sūrya-vaiśvānara-prabhaih

j lj

( 2 8 b — t h e same a s 2 8 b i n V ā . P . ) Sambhārais tu Subhair juspam fair evendra-sado yathā jj ( T h e sacrificial session) was attended by Vālakhilyas brilliant

like

the

a n d other sages

sun, the fire and by auspicious ( h o l y ) multitudes of Pitrs,

•Cāranas, as in the assembly of I n d r a ) .


26

Brahmānda Purāna:

T h e y duly worshipped t h e G a n d h a r v a s a n d others in a c c o r d a n c e w i t h their species. While p r o p i t i a t i n g , he remem­ bered the G a n d h a r v a s a n d others. Thereafter, in other holy rites t h e G a n d h a r v a s sang Sāman h y m n s ; the groups of Apsaras d a n c e d ; t h e sages spoke words of wonderfully variegated letters a n d of splendid form. 32. T h e l e a r n e d scholars c h a n t e d M a n t r a s etc. T h e y defeated their o p p o n e n t s by means of copious objections. 33-34. T h e sages w e r e . great erudite scholars. T h e y were experts in words, meanings a n d logical arguments. N o t h i n g was seized from t h e m . No Brahmarāksasas entered t h e p l a c e and spoiled t h e Yajña. N e i t h e r the Daityas n o r those with weapons with feather attached to them c a m e there. T h e r e was no occasion for expiatory acts a n d there was no poverty. 35. Due to the combination of efficiency, intellect and steady activity, the injunctions were duly carried out resulting in blessings. T h u s the Sattra (sacrificial session) of those learned persons continued for twelve years. 36-38. T h a t sacrifice of the sages residing in Naimisa was like t h a t of the thunderbolt-bearing I n d r a . T h e elderly heroic a n d other R t v i k s performed the J y o t i s t o m a sacrifices separately. R i d i n g on the backs ( o f h o r s e s ? ) , they concluded all the sacrifices after distributing ten t h o u s a n d (coins) as m o n e t a r y gifts. After concluding their Yajña, all of t h e m asked V ā y u d e v a (the wind god) the great lord of u n m e a s u r e d vitality, O B r ā h m a n a s , w h a t I have been asked by you all. U r g e d (by t h e m ) the lord m e n t i o n e d to t h e m , the m a t t e r of his own race. 1

2

39. (Lord W i n d ) was t h e disciple of t h e self-born deity. He has perfect control over the sense organs. He sees every t h i n g directly. He is endowed with t h e eight powers—Ānimā (minuteness) a n d others. He is equipped w i t h subtle limbs. 40. He sustains all the worlds by m e a n s of rains a l o n g with t h e w i n d s blowing obliquely. T h e branches, the seven 1. V ā . P . 2 . 3 6 reads: Bhrgvādyā rsayo dhiyā: 'intelligent & self possessed sages like Bhrgu & others. 2.

V ā . P . 2 . 3 6 reads:

P r s t h a g a m a n a m ' w h o w e n t after them'.


27

1.1.2.41-48

boughs, h a v e been b o r n e by h i m . (? t h e seven types of wind are p r o b a b l y alluded t o ) . H e protects t h e mobile a n d t h e immobile beings all r o u n d . 41-43. In his realm t h e seven times seven (fortynine) M a r u t s a r e stationed. He is extremely powerful a n d he performs the Sattra of t h e Sūtas with t h r e e V y ū h a s 1 (circular or other types of arrays) He holds t h e remedies of t h e fiery e m b o d i e d beings. T h e five functional o r g a n airs, viz., P r ā n a a n d others sustain t h e body filling it with its i n n a t e activities. T h e wind has e t h e r (ākāśa) as its source of origin. It has t w o qualities. It is end­ owed with the qualities of Śabda (sound) a n d Spar.Sa ( t o u c h ) . 44. He has been called V ā c o r a n i (source of origin of speech like the Arani which is t h e source of fire) by persons w h o are clever in the science of sound a n d phonetics. W i t h soft a n d gentle speech, he a p p e a r e d to delight t h e sages. 4 5 . O learned ones, conversant w i t h t h e P u r ā n a s , O B r ā h m a n a s , well disciplined in t h e knowledge of t h e P u r ā n a s , the lord ( w i n d ) recounted t h e story in a speech befitting t h e basis w h i c h is the P u r ā n a . 46-48. All these narrations, O excellent B r ā h m a n a s , a r e in a c c o r d a n c e with w h a t h a d transpired. This is an excellent great principle of t h e world of t h e sages. T h i s P u r ā n a h a s been formerly recounted by B r a h m a . It contains excellent wisdom of the deities a n d t h e sages. It destroys all sins. I shall n a r r a t e it in detail its contents in d u e o r d e r . 2

1.

Vā.P.2.41

reads:

Vyūhāśrayānāih

bhūtānārh—'Bhūtas

(beings)

w h o d e p e n d o n the V y ū h a ( b o d y ) ' . 2.

W . 36-48 show that this Purāna (Bd.P.) was formerly narrated b y

god Brahma originally. H i s disciple, the W i n d g o d recounted it to sages of N a i m i s ā r a n y a on the occasion of the Sattra of twelve years duration.


28

Brahmānda Purāna CHAPTER THREE Description of Evolution of the Universe : The Creation of Hiranyagarbha

Sūta narrated : 1. Listen to their divine story t h a t rids one of all sins. It is being n a r r a t e d by m e . It is wonderfully variegated. It has m a n y topics ( u n d e r discussion) ; it is esteemed by t h e Vedas. 2. He who retains this ( i n m i n d ) p e r m a n e n t l y or listens to this frequently m a i n t a i n s his family (or propagates his race) a n d he is h o n o u r e d in t h e heavenly world. 3. Listen to t h e topic being r e c o u n t e d in the m a n n e r it h a d been h e a r d a n d it h a d occurred. Listen to the five Tārās ( s t a r s ) * t h a t are five in n u m b e r . Listen to this n a r r a t i v e t h a t is conducive to the increase of the fame of t h e ancestors. 4. T h e glorification of all these persons of meritorious deeds a n d of everlasting fame is conducive to wealth, fame, longevity a n d heaven. It destroys enemies. 5-7. I b o w d o w n to H i r a n y a g a r b h a , the lordly Purusa who is u n b o r n , w h o is the first creator of subjects, w h o is t h e most excellent one, t h r o u g h w h o m t h e K a l p a has b e e n com­ p e t e n t to h a v e its characteristics; t h r o u g h w h o m the fire has been c a p a b l e of being a purifying factor; a n d w h o is t h e self-born B r a h m a administering all t h e worlds. After bowing down to B r a h m a , I shall recount t h e excellent creation of living beings, t h a t begins with Mahat (the great First Principle) a n d ends w i t h Viśefa (special created t h i n g s ) , 1 t h a t has its own charac­ teristic features a n d diversities, t h a t has five authorities (testimonies) ; t h a t calmly rests in t h e six ones (?) a n d t h a t which is presided over by P u r u s a . 8-9. T h r o u g h concentration of mind, I shall describe to you t h e excellent creation of Bhūtas. Avyakta ( t h e unmanifest *

For the above reading

(ViSva-tāra ca yā pañca), Vā.P.4.7a (a corres­

ponding verse) reads : vistārāvayavam tesām ' ( L i s t e n to the narration of) the detailed parts 1. Purānas. 1.3.

The

(of the P u r ā n a ) . Sāńkhya

Compare

the

theory of evolution of the universe is accepted in account of

creation of the Brahmānda

1-45; 42.1-115; Bh.P. 111.20.12-53; KP.I.2.3 ff.; A P .

in

17.2-16.

NP.


29

1.1.3.10-18

o n e ) which is of t h e n a t u r e of Sat a n d Asat (Existent a n d n o n ­ existent) is the eternal cause. Persons w h o discuss a n d p o n d e r over t h e Principles (reality) call i t P r a d h ā n a a n d P r a k r t i . It is devoid of odour, colour a n d t a s t e ; it is w i t h o u t t h e qualities of sound a n d t o u c h . 10. It is the source of origin of t h e universe; it is t h e g r e a t Bhūta (living e n t i t y ) ; t h e supreme a n d e t e r n a l B r a h m a n . It is t h e (cosmic) b o d y of all living b e i n g s ; the unmanifest o n e has b e c o m e so. 11. T h e B r a h m a n has n e i t h e r beginning n o r e n d ; it is u n b o r n a n d s u b t l e ; it has t h r e e Gunas, it is t h e source of origin a n d place of u l t i m a t e m e r g i n g a n d rest. It is Asāmpratika (does n o t b e l o n g to t h e present t i m e ) , it is Ajñeya (i.e. c a n n o t be comp r e h e n d e d . It is t h e B r a h m a n which is beyond Sat a n d Asat. 12. This entire d a r k world was p e r v a d e d by his A t m a n ( s o u l ) . As the G u n a s were in a state of equilibrium, this world full of darkness h a d n o t yet been evolved. 13. At t h e time of creation, Pradhāna is presided over by Ksetrajña a n d since the G u n a s become uneven ( d u e to loss of their e q u i l i b r i u m ) , the great Principle (Mahat) was evolved. 14. T h a t Mahat (Great Principle) is subtle a n d at t h e outset it was enveloped by Avyakta. T h e Mahat wherein there is a p r e d o m i n a n c e of Sattva Guna displays Sattva guna alone. 15. It should be known as M a h a t on a c c o u n t of its Sattva quality. T h a t is r e m e m b e r e d as its sole reason. T h e Liñga (Śarira) (i.e. t h e i n t e r n a l b o d y or t h e psychic m e c h a n i s m ) a l o n e is evolved a n d it is presided over by Ksetrajña ( i n d i v i d u a l soul). 16. Sarhkalpa (Wishful t h o u g h t ) a n d Adhyavas&ya (Determination) are remembered as its two functions. W i t h a desire to create he w h o is beyond measures, creates the g r e a t creation. 17-18. (Defective T e x t ) V i r t u e etc. and the elements are t h e causes of t h e principles of the worlds. T h e m i n d in the 1

1. The text from verse 17-28 is corrupt and the corresponding text of the Vā.P. Ch.4 has little in common with these verses and is of no help in interpretation. Hence reconstruction of emendations could not be hazarded. But Vā.P. 4.76b-79 bear some correspondence to Bd.P.I.i.3.24-27. The Vā.


30

Brahmānda Parana

g r e a t A t m a n is B r a h m a n . T h e discrimination of wicked know­ ledge is t h r o u g h ī ś v a r a ( L o r d ) . T h e P r a j ñ ā s a n d h i (the j u n c t i o n of intellect) is everything t h a t is u n d e r possession. He considers all living beings t h r o u g h Sańkhyāyatanaraśmis (?) (the rays t h a t a r e the a b o d e of t h e n u m b e r ?). Therefore the lord attains t h e desired fruit. 19-20. T h e Manas (Mind) is called Bhoktr (Enjoyer) a n d Trātr (Protector) a n d it remains as separated soul. ( T h e Mahat is so called) because it falls within the collection of principles a n d it is great in m a g n i t u d e . T h e M a h a t principle is r e m e m ­ b e r e d as one having physical body t h a t is g r e a t e r t h a n the remaining Gunas a n d Tattvas (Principles). T h e mind is called M a n a s because it thinks or considers the division (or separateness) or it is t h o u g h t of as a p a r t . 21-22. T h e (individual soul) is r e m e m b e r e d as Purusa because of its relationship with Sat (the Existent i.e. t h e B r a h m a n ) by way of enjoyment of worldly pleasures. Also the supreme soul is called B r a h m a n because it is Brhat (very huge) a n d because it causes all t h e living beings to increase in size ( B r m h a n a t v a ) . ( I t is possible) because it is t h e basis of every­ t h i n g . It is defined as B r a h m a because it causes t h e living beings to increase in- size a n d because it fills all the bodies w i t h blessings. 23. T h e P u r u s a u n d e r s t a n d s all the Bhavas (beings a n d things) separately. It is t h r o u g h it (i.e. P u r u s a ) t h a t the Brah­ m a n achieves all its tasks (lit. doing of the w o r k ) at t h e outset. 24. K n o w t h a t the Prākrta (the creation of P r a k r t i ) is t h e Vivarta ( t r a n s f o r m a t i o n ) (ofBrahman). x T h e Ksetrajña is on a p a r with B r a h m a n . Indeed it is called the first embodied being and Puripurusa ( t h e ancient p e r s o n ) . P. verses m a y be summarised here as follows: 'The Ksetrajña called Brahma w h o awoke in the egg of Prakrti (Cosmic e g g ) is the first e m b o d i e d being and he is called Purusa (one lying in the abode of the cosmic e g g . ) This g o d Brahma, the first creator of Bhātas (elements or beings) existed first. This four-faced Hiranya-garbha appeared at first in this (cosmic e g g ) . Both at the time of creation and re-creation (after destruction), he is the Ksetrajña called Brahma. 1. T h i s purāna supports Vivarta-vāda as distinguished from Parināma.nāda in explaining the Brahma-world relation.


31

I.I.3.25-33

25. T h a t B r a h m a is the primordial creator of the living beings, t h a t existed at the outset. 26-27. T h a t H i r a n y a g a r b h a with four faces a p p e a r e d in the An4a (Cosmic e g g ) . In t h e p r i m a r y creation as well as in the secondary creation, the Ksetrajña is on a par with B r a h m a n . T h e ( I n d i v i d u a l souls) are asked alongwith the Karanas (sense o r g a n s ) . T h e y a b a n d o n ( t h e m ) alongwith the dissolutions. Again they assume physical bodies during the j u n c t i o n s of the jūgas. 28. (Defective t e x t ) Those five (?) who are enlightened m a y take away t h e w a t e r of t h e depression ( p i t ) of t h a t noblesouled one who uplifts the golden M e r u . (?) 1

29-31. T h e s e seven worlds are well established in this cosmic egg; the whole e a r t h along with t h e seven continents, t h e seven oceans, the g r e a t m o u n t a i n s a n d thousands of rivers -are established in the very same cosmic egg. These worlds a r e s i t u a t e d within (the cosmic egg). This universe is within the cosmos. Everything is established in t h a t cosmic egg—viz. t h e m o o n and the sun along w i t h t h e stars, planets a n d t h e w i n d as well as the m o u n t a i n Lokāloka. 32.* T h e waters a r e externally s u r r o u n d e d by the Tejas (fiery e l e m e n t ) ten times as big as themselves. T h e Tejas is externally surrounded by Vāyu (wind) ten times as big as itself. 33. V ā y u is externally surrounded by the Nabhas ( E t h e r ) ten times as big as itself. In t h e same m a n n e r the entire ether is externally surrounded by B h ū t ā d i ( t h e A h a r h k ā r a or e g o ) . 1.

F r o m this verse onwards the Prākrta sarga, the first creation of g o d

Brahma, is described. It takes p l a c e without pre-planning or

is unpremedi­

tated (abuddhipūrva)' like the s u d d e n flash of lightning' as the Bd.P. puts

it.

While the Vaikrta creations (five in n u m b e r ) are planned—buddhipūrvaka. *

F r o m this verse the e l e m e n t a l sheaths that envelop the cosmic egg

are e n u m e r a t e d . As verses 29-38 in Bd.P. here a n d Vā.P.4.81-91 are identical, we c a n substitute the missing line in Bd.P.32. by V ā . P . 8 4 a as follows: adbhir daia-gunābhis tu bāhyato' ridam samāvrtam j ' T h e cosmic egg is e n v e l o p e d from outside w i t h

(the

sheath of)

ten

times (larger) water'. T h i s additional line is essential to make up the n u m b e r s e v e n of these Prākrtic sheaths m e n t i o n e d b e l o w in verse 34 a s : ebhir āvaranair andam saptabhih prākrtair vrtam j


32

Brahmānda Purāna

34. T h e Bhūtādi is enveloped by Mahat a n d the Mahat is enveloped by Pradhāna. T h e cosmic egg is thus enveloped by the seven Āvaranas (coverings) p e r t a i n i n g to t h e Prakrti. 35-37. T h u s willingly these Prakrtis (evolutes of Prakrti) are stationed ready in destroying mutually. T h e y stand ready at t h e time of c r e a t i o n ; they sustain m u t u a l l y a n d they devour m u t u a l l y . Those Vikāras (effects) abide in t h e Vikārins (causes) by way of t h e supporter-supported relationship. T h e Avyakta (the unmanifest o n e ) is called Ksetra a n d B r a h m a n is called Ksetrajña. T h u s the P r ā k r t a Sarga ( c r e a t i o n of t h e P r a k r t i ) ( h a s been e x p l a i n e d ) . It is presided by Ksetrajña. ~. 38. This is t h e first creation a n d it is u n p r e m / d n e d . It appeared just like the lightning. U n d o u b t e d l y he w h o factually understands this b i r t h of H i r a n y a g a r b h a shall become longlived, famous, blessed and intelligent.

CHAPTER

FOUR

Constitution 'of' the world (The Cosmic Egg) [ T h e creation d u e to disequilibrium of gunas—the three states of the self-born god Brahma—Description of K a l p a s ] Sūta said : 1. W h e n t h e unmanifest one is stationed within itself a n d w h e n the effect (universe) h a d b e e n w i t h d r a w n , t h e Pra­ d h ā n a a n d P u r u s a r e m a i n w i t h their similarity of characteristics (retained). 2. These two have T a m a s a n d Sattva gunas. T h e y are stationed on a p a r w i t h each other. H e n c e they a r e said to be m u t u a l pursuers. T h e y a r e not excessive ( i n t h e manifestation of the G u n a s ) .


33

I.I.4.3-11

3. Laya (Dissolution) should be understood to occur when G u n a s are in equilibrium. It is called creation when there is p r e d o m i n a n c e (of one G u n a over the other.) T h e Sthiti (Sustenance) was at the time when Sattva was p r e d o m i n a n t . Certainly, the lotus is stationed at the top (?) 4. W h e n Rajas closely follows a n d stations itself in T a m a s a n d Sattva, it is the Rajas that causes the other things to function in the same way as in the case of the w a t e r causing the seeds to function. 5. T h e G u n a s assume inequality a n d they become stabilized casually. It should be known that three (divinities) were b o r n out of the G u n a s which are a g i t a t e d . 6. T h e y a r e eternal, extremely mysterious; the souls__of everyone and e m b o d i e d ; the Sattva q u a l i l y l s V i s ñ u T t h e Rajas is B r a h m a a n d the T a m a s is R u d r a , the Prajāpati. 7. Visnu the enlightener a n d revealer of the Rajas becomes B r a h m a , a n d a t t a i n s the status of t h e c r e a t o r . It is from him^that being of great vitality^that the variety of creation of the worlds, takes its origin. 1

8. Visnu as t h e enlightener a n d revealer of t h e T a m a s stands separate in the f£om of K ā l a ( T i m e ) .("Vfc S <' / « . '• ~j Visnu as the enlightener a n d revealer of t h e Sattva stands separate as sustenance (i.e. one w h o sustains). 9 . These alone are the three worlds; these alone are t h e three G u n a s ; these alone a r e the three V e d a s ; these a l o n e a r e the three sacred fires. 10. These have m u t u a l inter-association; these a r e m u t u a l l y a t t a c h e d ; they exist by m u t u a l help a n d they impel inter se. 11. These are m u t u a l l y coupled; these are m u t u a l l y inter­ d e p e n d e n t ; these do not become separated even for a m o m e n t ; they do not a b a n d o n each other.

1. T h o u g h this Purāna accepts the Sāńkhya theory regarding the crea­ tion of the universe being due to the imbalance of the three Gunas, the personi­ fication of the Gunas in Brahma (Rajas), V i s n u (Sattva) and Rudra ( T a m a s ) is the puranic w a y of presentation for the understanding of the process by t h e masses.


34

Brakmānda Purāna

12. As a result of t h e unevenness of t h e G u n a s , t h e Prad h ā n a begins to function at the time of creation. At the outset it begins to function (from t h a t Avyakta) of t h e n a t u r e of Sat a n d Asat a n d presided over by Adrsfa (the u n m a n i f e s t ) . 13. T h e pair B r a h m a a n d Buddhi (Cosmic intellect) took their origin simultaneously from t h a t ( P r a d h ā n a ) of the n a t u r e of T a m a s a n d unmanifestness*. T h e Ksetrajña ( a n d ) t h a t which is (also) n a m e d B r a h m a (was born from t h a t p a i r ) . 14. Fully equipped withKārya (effect?) a n d Karana (the instruments; t h e sense-organs) B r a h m a a p p e a r e d (existed) at the outset. He was unparalleled in lustre, intelligent, unmanifest b u t excellent enlightener ( r e v e a l e r ) . 15. (Defective t e x t ) . He is t h e first embodied being stabilised in r e t e n t i o n . He is endowed with unequalled know­ ledge a n d absence of passionate a t t a c h m e n t . 16. On account of his being unmanifest a n d because he h a d kept (everything) u n d e r control, since these a r e three G u n a s a n d because all evolved beings are i n t e r d e p e n d e n t , ( B r a h m a attains) whatever he desires mentally. 17. T h e self-born deity has three states : {He has four faces as B r a h m a as K ā l a ( G o d of D e a t h ) he is Bhava, t h e destroyer; (as V i s n u ) he is t h e P u r u s a with thousand heads. 18. As B r a h m a , he creates the worlds; as K ā l a , he annihilates t h e m ; as Purusa, he is indifferent : these are t h e t h r e e states of the selfborn deity. 1 19. As B r a h m a , he possesses Rajas exclusively; as K ā l a he has Rajas a n d T a m a s a n d as P u r u s a (i.e. Visnu) he is exclusively S ā t t v i k a ; — t h i s is the position of t h e G u n a s in t h e case of t h e self-born deity. 20. B r a h m a has eyes like lotus-petals*; K ā l a has t h e lustre ofcollyrium ever since his origin. Purusa islotuseyed with t h e form of t h e s u p r e m e A t m a n . *

V ā . P . o . 2 3 : F r o m that (Pair of Brahma & Buddhi) was born Ksetrajña

designated as Brahma, full of tamas and unmanifestness. 1.

T h e trinity of gods carrying out the functions of creation,

ance a n d destruction of the universe but the three states of

susten-

one and the same

self-born deity. *

Kamalapatrāksa should

be emended

as Kamalapatrābha

as

3 1 b , as it is the description of the complexions of three deities.

in

Vā.P.5.


I.I.4.21-29

35

2 1 . He is single. He is two-fold. He is three-fold. AgairT he is multifold. T h e lord of Yogins makes a n d un-makes t h e physical bodies. 22. T h e physical bodies a d o p t different kinds of shapes, activities, colours a n d features. Since he has the pastime of 1 r e m a i n i n g threefold in the world, he is called Triguna (one t h a t has three G u n a s ) . 23-24. Since he is divided i n t o four, he is glorified as Caturvyūha (one with four a r r a y s ) . Since at the end of a P a r ā r d h a , the lord lies down (sleeps) ; since the lord enjoys the pleasures of the world, since all living beings always take rest (lie down) normally and comfortably in him, he is defined as A t m a n , He is Rsi because he goes everywhere a n d since the lord enters the physical body. 25. He is Sarva ( a l l ) , because he is the master of a l l ; he is Visnu because he permeates everything. He is Bhagavāh, (since) he devoured the Bhāvas (living beings). He is Nāga because no Āgas (i.e. sin) abides in him. 2 6 . He is Parama, because he is extremely delighted. Since lie h a s D e v a t v a (state of being G o d ) , he is remembered a s O M . He is Sarvajña (omniscient) because he knows everything perfectly. He is Sarva because everything originates from him. 27. B r a h m a causes the sleep (i.e. perfect rest) of Naras ( m e n ) , hence he is remembered as N ā r ā y a n a . He functions after dividing himself into three. He is Sakala ( h a v i n g the full c o m p l e m e n t of digits and p a r t s ) . 28. By means of the three ( G u n a s ) , he himself creates"," devours a n d protects. T h e Prabhu ( L o r d ) himself became H i r a n y a g a r b h a at the outset a n d manifested himself. 29. Indeed he is Ādya (First, foremost) a n d Svavaśa ( h a v i n g himself under c o n t r o l ) . He is r e m e m b e r e d as Aja because he is not b o r n . H e n c e he is defined as Hiranyagarbha in the P u r ā n a s . 1.

T h e author of Bd.P. seems to be fond of giving popular etymologies.

T h e etymologies of Triguna, Caturvyūha, Atmā, Rsi, Visnu, N ā r ā y a n a etc. are interesting. S o m e of these are however grammatically correct e.g., V i s n u —vis—'to

pervade',

rsi—r

'to

go'.


Brahmūnda Purāna

36

30. He is selfborn a n d receding (?), he is K ā l a and t h e foremost a m o n g all t h e castes. It is not possible to specify him exclusively in the course of h u n d r e d s of M a n u ' s y e a r s . * 31. T h e P a r ā r d h a of B r a h m a is r e m e m b e r e d as being reckoned is so many K a l p a s . He has a n o t h e r period of the same d u r a t i o n a n d he wakes up at the end of t h a t period. 32. T h o u s a n d s a n d crores of years t h a t h a d b e e n t h e abode of K a l p a s have passed by. As m a n y a r e yet to come. 33-34. T h e K a l p a t h a t is c u r r e n t now, is V ā r ā h a , know ye all. It is t h e first K a l p a a n d it is the present K a l p a . T h e Kings should govern till thousand Yugas are completed.

CHAPTER FIVE The Creation of the Universe [ T h e Boar i n c a r n a t i o n of V i s n u — P r i m a r y a n d secondary crea­ t i o n — c r e a t i o n of gods, sages a n d their d i s s o l u t i o n ] . Śrl Sūta said : 1. At t h e beginning, t h e waters were present everywhere, on the surface of t h e e a r t h . W h e n this (visible w o r l d ) h a d been annihilated a n d when t h e winds h a d become quiet, n o t h i n g could be known. 2. In t h a t vast ocean-like expanse of water, 1 w h e n t h e whole world consisting of mobile and immobile beings h a d *

For Varnāgratas, Vā.P.5.46b reads Varsāgrajas. If this is accepted as

emendation, the verse w o u l d m e a n : " I t is n o t possible to calculate even w i t h hundreds of M a n v a n t a r a s as a unit of the time etc. 1.

Ekārnava—Also

called

Mahārnava,

agādha

stabdha

salila,

or

Salila

only, Yugānta-toya in M t . P., H V . , Bh.P. V P . a n d other Purānas. T h i s pri­ meval watery flood expresses the infinite unmanifest c a u s e — t h e Kārana Brah­ man as explained by N i l a k a n t h a (on H V . P . 3.9.1-4) 1/2 from w h i c h all life


37

I.I.5.3-10

perished, the only entity present t h e r e was t h a t lord B r a h m a 1 with t h o u s a n d eyes a n d t h o u s a n d legs. 3. At t h a t t i m e B r a h m a n a m e d N ā r ā y a n a lay asleep in the waters. He h a d a thousand heads. He was t h e Purusa with golden colour a n d was beyond the k e n of the sense-organs. 4. P r o h i b i t e d * (?) on a c c o u n t of t h e excess of Sattva, he saw the e m p t y world. In this context, as regards N ā r ā y a n a they cite this śloka ( v e r s e ) . 5. Waters are called Nāras (because) t h e waters are indeed t h e children of (Nara) ( M a n ) ; the waters are his place of resort. H e n c e , he is r e m e m b e r e d as N ā r ā y a n a . 2 6. (Defective t e x t ) . He r e m a i n s m e d i t a t i n g for a period e q u a l to a thousand Yugas. He performs meditation on a ( l o t u s ) with golden petals in order to reach t h e ideal state of Brahman.** 7. Like a glow-worm at night d u r i n g the rainy season, B r a h m a moves about here a n d there in the water, stooping d o w n w i t h his face t u r n e d downwards. 8-9. After knowing t h a t t h e great ( u n i v e r s e ) h a d gone d e e p into t h a t vast expanse"oTwater, h e - t h o u g h t of uplifting the e a r t h with steadiness of composure. T h e n he t h o u g h t of t h e o t h e r eightfold cosmic body (as evolved by) O m k ā r a , in t h e beginnings of K a l p a s as before. T h e n the great soul t h o u g h t of his divine form. 10. On seeing t h a t the e a r t h h a d sunk i n t o the w a t e r he t h o u g h t — " w h a t form shall I assume a n d uplift the earth ?" comes into being. V P . I . 2 . 2 2 states that this Ekārnava doctrine is very ancient and Brahma-vādins have elaborated it to explain the process of creation a n d dissolution. M t . P . 182 identifies N ā r ā y a n a with M a h ā r n a v a . 1.

Cf. Purusa-sūkta

*

nisiddha in the text is illogical. V ā . P . 6 . 4 (an identical verse) reads:

(RV.X.90.1).

Prabuddha 'awakened' by the d o m i n a n c e of Sattva. 2.

T h e usual derivation of N ā r ā y a n a found in other Purānas also b u t

for a different derivation vide supra 4.28"! **

V ā . P . 6 . reads Śarvaryante

~J

: naiiarh kālam upāsya sah / prakurute

Brahmatvarh

sarge-kāranāt

II

' H a v i n g passed the night-time in sleep, at the end of the night, creates g o d Brahma for the creation of the universe'.


38

Brahmānda Purāna

11. He r e m e m b e r e d the form of a Boar 1 t h a t is suitable for the a q u a t i c sports. It was invisible* u n t o all living beings. It is of the n a t u r e of speech termed B r a h m a n . 12. Its girth was t e n Yojanas (1 Y o j a n a = 1 2 K m ) a n d the length was a h u n d r e d Yojanas. It resembled the d a r k cloud, in complexion. It h a d a r u m b l i n g sound like t h a t of t h e clouds. 13. It h a d a h u g e body like a great m o u n t a i n . It h a d curved fangs, white, s h a r p a n d terrible. It bore resembl­ a n c e (in lustre to) l i g h t n i n g a n d fire. Its brilliance was like t h a t of the sun. 14. It h a d thick long a n d r o u n d shoulders. It used to walk with the ( s t e a d y ) steps of Visnu. T h e region of its hips was raised up (well-developed) a n d stout. It was h o n o u r e d with the characteristic features of a bull. 15. Assuming this inimitable form of a boar, H a r i entered t h e n e t h e r worlds for uplifting t h e e a r t h . 16-22. ( T h e description of Tajña-vārāha) . 2 T h e conclu­ sion on the Diksā (initiation) a n d Isfi (sacrifice) were his curved fangs, the Kratu (sacrifice) was his t o o t h . 3 T h e Juhū ( t h e crescent-shaped wooden ladle) was his m o u t h ; . t h e fire was his

1.

VV.8-11 remind «f Tait.Brāhmana 1.2.1.3 which states āpo

vā idamagre salilam āstt /

tasmin

prajāpatir

vāyur

bhūtvā

acarat j sa imam apaiyat j

tārh

varāho bhūtva'harat // Purānas elaborated this statement in the full-fledged description of the Boarincarnation of Visnu. Vide Bh. P. 111.13 17-33, Mt.P.Chs. 246-248; V P . I . 4 . 1-52, M b h . Sabhā 37.29 ff. and Bd. P. infra Ch. 8. 1-10. *

adhrsyam 'unassailable' in V ā . P . 6 . 1 1 .

2.

This

poetic description of the D i v i n e Boar in Yajña terminology is

so beautiful that n o t only Purāna-writers but writers on Smrti works, Tantra works and even Śañkara adopted it. For example, vide Vā.P.Ch.6 (a number of verses identical with B d . P . ) , Bm P. 2 1 3 . 3 3 - 4 2 ; Bh.P. 111.13 34-39, Visnu Smrti

1.3-12; Śańkara on Visnu-sahasra-nāma verse 118 on Tajñāńga. T h o u g h it is a self-explanatory translation some expressions are explained

briefly. 3.

Mt.P.

247.68

reads

differently.

Veda-pādo Yūpa-darhffrah

Kratu-dantas

Citi-mukhah


39

I 1.5.16-22 1

2

t o n g u e ; the D a r b h a grasses were his h a i r s , t h e B r a h m a ( o n e of the four Rtviks employed at a S o m a sacrifice or vedic 3 knowledge of great p e n a n c e was his h e a d . T h e V e d a s were his shoulders; he h a d the fragrance of t h e Havis. T h e Havya, Kavya 1 etc. w e r e his velocity; Prāgvamśa ( t h e sacrificial r o o m facing 6 the east) was his b o d y ; he was brilliant; he was e q u i p p e d w i t h different kinds of Diksās ( i n i t i a t i o n s ) ; he was the m a s t e r of Yoga w i t h D a k s i n ā for his h e a r t ; he was t h e lord full ofŚraddhā 6 (faith) a n d Sattva (good quality) ; he h a d Upākarma (extra 1 study of t h e V e d a s by w a y of e x p i a t i o n ) for his Ruci ( l u s t r e or t a s t e ) ; he h a d Pravargya ( t h e ceremony p r e l i m i n a r y to Soma sacrifice) as his Āvartabhūsancfi ( o r n a m e n t a l whorls of h a i r on his c h e s t ) , the way of t h e different Cchandas ( M e t r e s ) was his p a t h w a y ; t h e Upanisads with their esoteric doctrines consti­ t u t e d his seat. He was assisted by M ā y ā in the capacity of his spouse; he h a d t h e height of t h e peak of a m o u n t a i n ; he had t h e day a n d the n i g h t as his eyes;* he had t h e ancillary subjects 1.

A V e d i c concept. Agni (fire) is the tongue of gods w i t h which they

eat the food (offered in sacrifices), cf. R V . I V . 5 7 . 1 . 2.

darbha-romā. T h e rfariAa-grass spread on the altar is compared to

the shaggy hair on the body of the boar. 3.

Brahma-śīrsah—Brahma means also the V e d i c knowledge and natu­

rally its position is the highest viz. the head. 4.

It

is difficult to understand w h y the velocity of the Divine Boar is

compared to the Havya and Kavya rites meant for gods and Pitrs. Probably Agnihotra and Śrāddha and their association with the sacrifice m a y be the reason. 5.

Prāgvamia-kāya—PrāgvaihSa

also means 'a room in which the

family

and friends performing the sacrifice assemble.' This body (Kāya) of the TajñaVarāha is so m u c h spacious as to accommodate many people. 6.

Vā.P.6.21.

gives

a

better reading viz. mahā-sattra-mayo : Mahā-

sattra is a long (and great) Soma-sacrifice continuing for 13 to 100

days.

V a r ā h a has assumed the form of a great S o m a sacrifice. 7.

The

M t . P . and Śańkara read upākarmostharucakah : Whose p e n d a n t

lower-life was upākarma (recitation of the V e d a s ) . Can we take ruci for rucaka? 8.

The

whorls of hair on the front of horse's chest is regarded as orna­

mental. T h e same on the chest of the boar would be beutirymg. T h e Pravargya ceremony is introductory to the S o m a sacrifice. In this, fresh j n i l k is poured into a heated vessels called Mahivira or Gharma, or i n t o boiling ghee

( M W . P . 6 9 3 . U ) . T h e vapour-fumes coiling up from the gharma

is imagined as circular whorls of the Boar's hair. 9.

Day

and night represent the Sun a n d the M o o n . T h e y are the t w o

eyes of this Divine Boar.


Brahmānda Purāna

40

of the Veclas as the o r n a m e n t u n t o his ears. He h a d the odour of the Ājya (ghee-offering; in the sacrifice) ; the Sruvā ( t h e sacri­ ficial ladle) was his s n o u t ; he h a d the loud p i t c h in c h a n t i n g of the Sāman hymns as his voice; he was glorious, an embodi­ m e n t of t r u t h and v i r t u e ; he was h o n o u r e d by the exploits of his actions; expiation was his claw; he was t e r r i b l e ; he had t h e knee joints of the animals; he was the great sacrifice in­ c a r n a t e ; Udgātā was his e n t r a i l ; 1 the H o m a was his Liñga (symbol) ; he h a d fruits and seeds as great medicinal h e r b s ( ? ) Vādyantara* (Another d i s p u t a n t ) was his own Śastra (sacrifice) ( ? ) . Absence of egotim as well as Soma j u i c e was his blood. 2

2 3 . [ T h e text in Bd.P. is corrupt. T h e corresponding verse in V ā . P. 6.23 is as follows :] b h ū t v ā Yajñn-varāho vai a n t a h sa prāviśat p r a b h u h / a d b h i h s a ñ c h ā d i t ā m ūrvīm sa t ā m a ś n a n prajāpatih upagamyojjahārāśu a p a s tāś ca sa vinyasan // ' I t is reported t h a t he verily b e c a m e Yajña-varāha a n d the Lord entered the waters. T h a t Prajāpati found t h a t e a r t h w h i c h was covered over with waters. R e m o v i n g (displacing) those waters, he seized a n d quickly lifted it u p . ' 24. He allocated the waters of the ocean in the oceans a n d those of the rivers in the rivers. After m a k i n g them separate a n d equal, he gathered the mountains on the e a r t h for its stability. 25. These m o u n t a i n s h a d been b u r n t in the previous Sarga (period of c r e a t i o n ) by the Samvartaka fire (i.e. fire of destruction at the time of universal a n n i h i l a t i o n ) . Along with t h a t fire these m o u n t a i n s h a d got merged in the e a r t h completely.

1.

It is the length of the S ā m a song sung by the U d g ā t r which resemb­

les the long entrail of the animal. 2.

Phala-bīja-mahausadhīh. T h i s reading though accepted in the

trans­

lation is obscure. Mt.P.,Bm.P., V i s n u Smr. read Bījausadhi-mahāphalah. Mahāphala is the scrotum. T h e idea seems to be that the herbs a n d plants which produce the seed are comparable functionally to the testicle of the 3.

This is obscure. T h e reading in V i s n u Smr. (1.6) is

Boar.

Vedyantarātmā.

It means the Vedi, the altar of the sacrifice was the heart of the Boar.


41

I.I.5.26-32

26. (Defective t e x t ) . In t h a t vast expanse of water [due to cold (śaityāt—Vā. P . ) ] . t h e y became stored up by the w i n d . Wherever this (water solution w i t h b u r n t mountains) was sprinkled, a m o u n t a i n cropped up in e a c h of those places. 27. After they h a d been scattered, V i ś v a k a r m a n divided t h e worlds, oceans a n d m o u n t a i n s . He divides like this a g a i n a n d again at t h e beginning of every K a l p a . 1 28. He created again and again this e a r t h consisting of seven continents along w i t h t h e oceans a n d t h e m o u n t a i n s . He (also) created again t h e four worlds beginning with Bhū (earth). 29-31. After creating the worlds, B r a h m a , .the self-born lord b e g a n the creation of Prajās (subjects). Desirous of creat­ ing different subjects ( c r e a t u r e s ) , he created t h e m in the same form as h a d been created before. As he m e d i t a t e d a n d pondered about (the forthcoming) creation preceded by (cosmic) intellect, Avidyā unfolded itself i n t o five forms simul­ taneous w i t h Pradhāna2 ( ? ) . These five forms were T ā m a s i k a . T h e y were darkness, delusion, great-delusion, p i t c h darkness a n d blind darkness. 32. T h u s Avidyā h a d five joints (Parvan).3 It manifest­ ed itself from t h e great-soul. T h u s the c r e a t i o n r e m a i n e d five-fold even as he was m e d i t a t i n g over it a n d identifying himself with it. 1.

T h e Puranic belief about

the n e w creation of the universe

beginning of a n e w K a l p a is that, despite the annihilation of the the end of every Kalpa, g o d Brahma re-creates the

universe

at

the

universe

on

the

at

same

m o d e l of the former universe. It is succinctly stated as Dhātā yathāpūrvam 2.

akalpayat

j

This is the translation of Pradhina-samakāle in the T e x t .

m e n t of the five Parvans of Avidyā simultaneously with the

T h e unfold-

Sāńkhya

principle

called Pradhāna is confusing. V ā . P . 6 . 3 6 gives a better reading viz. Pradhyānasama-kālam "simultaneously with i.e. while he was meditating, there manifes­ ted Avidyā of five knots or Parvans". 3.

T h e five joints

(Parvans) of Avidyā

Tamas, Moha, Mahā-moha, Tāmisra and as ignorance,

delusion,

are

enumerated in 3 1 b viz.

/4n</Aa-tāmisra.

desire of enjoyment,

These

are

rendered

anger and fear of death, vide

C o m . on V P . I . 5 . 5 ) . T h e concept called Avidyā is very c o m p l e x . W i t h Y o g a , it m e a n s "undifferentiated consciousness" ( J . H . W o o d s ) ; V e d ā n t a equates it Avith M ā y ā . H e r e the cosmic aspect of Avidyā is implied.


42

Brahmānda Purāna

33. It is surrounded everywhere by T a m a s like the seed a n d the creeper within a p o t . * Within a n d without, it is devoid of lustre as well as devoid of consciousness. 34. Since they have (well) m a d e intellect, miseries and sense-organs, the Nāgas (i.e. trees, creepers, plants) are glorified as Mukhya (Principal) creations. 1 T h e i r selves have been covered u p . 35 B r a h m a , the self-born lord, was not fully satisfied in his m i n d even after seeing the evolution of Mukhyasarga (principal c r e a t i o n ) . He t h o u g h t of creating (a fresh type of creation) then. 36. Even as he was p o n d e r i n g over it, a n o t h e r creation, the Tiryaksrotas2 (oblique-currented creation, i.e. the a n i m a l world) took its origin. It is remembered as Tiryaksrotas, because it functioned in oblique ( i n non-straight) ways. 37. On account of the excess of the Tamas quality, they are r e m e m b e r e d as Ajñānabahula ( a b o u n d i n g in i g n o r a n c e ) . T h e y a r e Utpādyagrāhinah** ( c o m p r e h e n d i n g w h a t should be p r o d u c e d ) . T h e y fancy themselves wise, despite their ignorance, 38. T h e y possess egotism. T h e y are p r o u d of themselves. T h e y a r e of twentyeight types. 3 T h e sense-organs a r e of eleven, varieties. T h e soul etc. a r e of nine varieties.

* For Bd.P.—bīja-kumbha-latā-vrtah (translated here) V ā . P . 6 . 3 7 b r e a d s : dipah kumbhavad āvrtah 'just as a l a m p lighted in a pitcher cannot emit light outside d u e to the opaque wall-like cover of the pitcher. T h i s simile in V ā . P . is the traditional a n d m o r e appropriate o n e here. For more discussion vide n o t e 2 on P. 57 o f the translation o f K P ( M L B D . ) 1. This 'meditated' (Vaikrta) creation by Avidyā w a s characterised by ignorance as it included immobiles (jVāga)-like mountains, trees. H e n c e it is also called Mukhya. As verse 55 below explains Mukhya means Sthāvara (immobile). 2 . W . 36-40 describe the second type and stage o f "meditated" creation viz. Tiryaksrotas. It is not that the creatures in this creation always m o v e in oblique direction. But, as verse 56 below and V P . 1.5.9-11 and 22a explain, it includes birds a n d beasts w h i c h are by nature mostly ignorant and hence taking to wrong-ways and egotistic. This is the second stage in volution after the immobile one. reading.

V ā . P . 6 . 4 3 a reads: utpatha-grāhinah 'taking to wrong w a y s ' — a better

3. T h e text reads astāvirhśad-vidhātmikāh and the reading by Vā.P.6.44. But V P . I . 5 . 1 1 a reads: as(āvirhiad-vadhāimikāh.

is

supported


43

1.1^.39-47

39. T h e T ā r a k a s a n d others are of eight types, their des­ truction of power is r e m e m b e r e d ( ? ) . T h e y have inner light a n d all of t h e m are again externally enveloped. 40. T h e y are called Tiryaksrotas. T h e y have their selves u n d e r control. T h e y have three appellations. 4 1 . After creating t h e second universal c r e a t i o n ; Tiryaksrotas a n d having observed t h a t type of creation, (following) idea occurred in h i m :

the the

42. Even as he was pondering, t h e final creation of t h e Sāttvika type was evolved. T h i s third creation is Ūrdhvasrotas u p w a r d s c u r r e n t e d . 1 It is based upwards. 4 3 . 'Z Since they r e t u r n e d u p w a r d s they are called Ūrdhva­ srotas. T h e y are of a pleasant n a t u r e w i t h m u c h of gaiety. T h e y are not enveloped within or w i t h o u t . 44-46a. T h e y a r e brilliant w i t h i n a n d w i t h o u t . T h e sub­ jects of Ūrdhvasrotas are r e m e m b e r e d as n i n e . T h e y are D h ā t ā (? c r e a t o r ) a n d others. T h e y are r e m e m b e r e d as wise ones of contented m i n d . This third creation, the Ūrdhvasrotas, is r e m e m ­ bered as Daivika (Divine) i.e. pertaining to gods). W h e n the divine creations of the Ūrdhvasrotas type h a d been created, lord B r a h m a became pleased. Thereafter, he did not p o n d e r over a n y t h i n g else. 46b-47. ( L a t e r o n ) t h e lord was desirous of c r e a t i n g a n o t h e r set of created beings t h a t would be S ā d h a k a (aspirant after spiritual a c h i e v e m e n t ) . Even as he was p o n d e r i n g over creation a n d since he was of truthful (effective) conception, the Bhautasarga ( c r e a t i o n of Bhūtas, i.e. living beings) manifested itself. It was down-

T h e reading is w o r t h noting as the verses concerning the creation in V P . I . 5 , V ā . P . 6 a n d Bd.P. text under translation are c o m m o n and the word Vadha in asiāvimSad-vadkātmakah in V P .

is a

technical

term in Sāńkhya. It means

'weakness.' Iśvara Krsna's Sāńkhya-K&rikā enumerates t h e m as follows: ekādaśendriya-vadhāh sapta-daśa-vadhi

saha buddhi-vadhair

buddher

aSaktir

uddisfā

viparyayāt tufti-siddhindm

j

//49//

1. W . 4 2 - 4 6 a describe the third Vaikrta Creation called srotas or Deva-sarga, creation of heavenly beings.

Urdhva-


44

Brahmānda Purāna 1

w a r d — c u r r e n t e d (arvāk-srotas) as well as competent to achieve t h e goals of his life. 4 8 . Since they function downwards (i.e. on the earth, below heaven) they are (called Arvāksrotas. T h e y a b o u n d in brilliance b u t were c o n t a m i n a t e d by tamas a n d d o m i n a t e d w i t h rajas. 49. H e n c e they have excess of misery. T h e y make re­ p e a t e d a t t e m p t s . T h e y are enlightened within a n d without. T h e y are the m o r t a l beings capable of achieving their goal. 50. T h e y a r e a r r a n g e d into eight classes w i t h hellish characteristics (i.e. such characteristic features as are conducive to h e l l ) . Those m e n w i t h souls of spiritual achievement are similar in characteristic features to the G a n d h a r v a s . 51-52. T h e fifth creation, t h e Anugraha Sarga (creation of blessings) is a r r a n g e d into four classes, viz. i) Viparyaya (Loss of consciousness), ii) Śakti (Efficiency), iii) Siddha (of a c h i e v e m e n t ) a n d iv) Mukhya ( P r i n c i p a l ) . T h e y are b o r n a g a i n and again, they recede a n d they ( c o m e b a c k ) to be present. T h e sixth creation is said to be of Bhūtādi (elements or creatures) e t c . 53-55A. Those creatures should be known as character­ ised by tendency to eat a n d obtain or g r a b . T h e first creation of B r a h m a should be known as t h a t of M a h a t ( t h e g r e a t p r i n c i p l e ) . T h e second creation is t h a t of Tanmātras. It is called Bhūtasarga.2 55B. T h e third Vaikārika creation is called Aindriya Sarga (creation p e r t a i n i n g to the sense o r g a n s ) . These are the Prākrta (of Prakrti) creations t h a t are evolved with consciousness and foreknowledge. 1.

VV.46b-50 describe the fourth creation called

arvāk-srotas—down-

currented i.e. w h o function on the earth below the heavenly region. It is called Manusyasarga in verse 49 and in VP.I.5.23. 2.

There

seems

to

be confusion

or Bhūta-sarga is called the sixth verses below

Vaikrta

in

the

present

text.

Here

Bhūtādi

Creation. But in the recapitulatory

( V V . 5 2 b - 5 8 ) Bhūta-sarga is given as the Second Prākrta Creation

( V . 5 4 a ) and Vaikrta sargas are stated to be five in number Pañcaite

vaikrtāh

sargāh—


I.I.5.56-62

45

T h e fourth creation is Mukhyasarga. creations are r e m e m b e r e d as Mukhyas,

The

immobile

56-57. T h e fifth one is Tiryaksrotasa creation. T h e Tiryagyonis (i.e. the lower creatures a n d animals) constitute it. T h e sixth creation of Ūrdhvasrotas is called D a i v a t a (per­ taining to divine beings). Thereafter, is the seventh creation, t h a t of the Arvāksrotas, the h u m a n beings. T h e e i g h t h creation is Anugrahasarga. It is Sāttvika as well as T ā m a s a . 58. These (latter) five creations a r e the Vaikrta ( M e d i ­ tated) creation. T h e first t h r e e a r e remembered as Prākrta (per­ t a i n i n g to P r a k r t i ) creations. T h e n i n t h creation called t h e K a u m ā r a ( b r o u g h t a b o u t b y K u m ā r a i.e. S a n a t k u m ā r a e t c . ) sarga. ( T h e eight creations m e n t i o n e d before a r e ) Prākrta a n d Vaikrta. 59. (Defective text)* T h e t h r e e P r ā k r t a creations a r e Buddhipūrvas ( c r e a t e d w i t h consciousness a n d foreknowledge). T h e Vikrta creations function Buddhi-Apūrvas ( w i t h o u t consci­ ousness a n d foreknowledge). T h e i r classes p e r t a i n to t h e B r a h m a n (?) 60-62. U n d e r s t a n d all of it even as it is b e i n g r e c o u n t e d in detail. He abides fourfold (in four groups) in all t h e liv­ ing beings, viz by (1) Viparyaya, (2) Śakti, ( 3 ) Buddhi (intellect a n d (4) Siddhi (see verse 51 a b o v e ) . He is stationed a m o n g immobile beings by means of Viparyāsa (i.e. Viparyaya—contra­ riety or loss of consciousness) ; in t h e lower creatures by means of Śakti (physical p o w e r ) ; the h u m a n beings are with souls of spiritual achievement; there is Pusti** (? n o u r i s h m e n t ) wholly a m o n g the Devas. *

T h e text is defective a n d hence the translation is confused. T h e

corresponding verse in V ā . P . 6 . Prākrtās

tu

trayah

sargāh

krtās

te'buddhi-pūrvakāh

/

Buddhi-pūrvam pravartante faf-sargā Brahmanas tu te 11 ' T h e three Prākrta creations were brought about w i t u o u t p l a n n i n g or pre-meditation

(abuddhi-pūrvakāh). But the six creations of g o d Brahma c a m e

out pre-planned **

(with previous m e d i t a t i o n ) .

tufti 'contentment' in V ā . P . 6 . 6 9 .


Brahmānda Purāna

46 Thereafter, himself.

B r a h m a created m e n t a l sons on a

p a r with

63-65. Those (sons) of great splendour a n d strength became Nivrttas (i.e. renounced the world) on account of their knowledge p e r t a i n i n g to Vivarta (unreal a p p e a r a n c e caused by Avidyā e.g. the world instead of B r a h m a n ) . All the three of t h e m (?) addressed the n a m e (? of the world a n d ceased (their activity) without c r e a t i n g the (primary) creation of the sub­ jects or the secondary one. W h e n they were found Viraktas (Devoid of passionate a t t a c h m e n t ) B r a h m a wishing to create o t h e r Sādhakas created those Devas who took pride in their positions a n d identified themselves with the same. T h e n there is the c o m m a n d of B r a h m a once again. U n d e r s t a n d from me those Sthānins (deities in different positions) who were in the condition of non-creation (Abhūtasrs(i). 66-68. T h e y a r e the waters, the fire, the e a r t h , the wind, the intermediate region between the heaven a n d the e a r t h , the ether, the heaven, the quarters, the oceans, the rivers, the vegetable kingdom, t h e souls of medicinal herbs, the souls of trees a n d creepers, the winding plants, the units of time such as K ā s t h ā s , Kalās, M u h ū r t a s etc., the twilights, the nights, the days, the half-years, the m o n t h s , the Ay anas ( t h e period of the tran­ sits of the sun from n o r t h to south a n d vice versa), the years a n d yugas. T h e y take p r i d e a n d identify themselves with their positions a n d c u r r e n t s . T h e y are r e m e m b e r e d as having the names of their respective positions. 69. After creating the souls of different Sthānas (positions), he created other beings, the Devas a n d the Pitrs by w h o m these subjects flourished. 70. He created nine m e n t a l sons, viz., Bhrgu, Ańgiras, Marīci, Pulastya, P u l a h a , K r a t u , Daksa, Atri a n d Vasistha. 71. These are decisively termed nine B r a h m ā s in the P u r ā n a because they were just like B r a h m a ( i n regard to the •creation) of all B r a h m a Yogins their sons. 72.

Thereafter

Brahma

created

R u d r a form out of his


I.I.5.73-82

47

anger. He then created the Samkalpa* (conception) a n d D h a r m a ( v i r t u e ) of all in all directions. 73. T h e n B r a h m a created Vyavasāya ( E n e r g e t i c effort) t h e c r e a t u r e of the n a t u r e of pleasure. F r o m the S a m k a l p a of (he c r e a t o r whose source of origin was the unmanifest one S a m k a l p a was b o r n . 74. F r o m the P r ā n a Daksa was created a n d he (Brahma) created M a r l c i from the speech a n d the eyes. Sage Bhrgu was b o r n of the h e a r t of B r a h m a whose source of origin was water. 75. Añgiras was born of the head a n d Atri from the ears. Pulastya was born of the life-breath called U d ā n a a n d P u l a h a from the V y ā n a . 76. Vasistha was born of life-breath Samāna. He created K r a t u from the A p ā n a . These are remembered as the t w e l v e * * excellent sons of B r a h m a . 77. D h a r m a a n d others should be known a n d they are remembered as the first born sons of B r a h m a , Bhrgu a n d others w h o were created ( l a t e r ) , were not expounders of Brahman. 78. T h e s e twelve sons of B r a h m a are to be known as t h e ancient householders. O B r ā h m a n a , these a r e b o r n along with Rudra. 79. K r a t u a n d S a n a t k u m ā r a , these two lived in p e r p e t u a l celibacy. In t h e previous b i r t h * * * they are elder to all. 80. In the seventh K a l p a , these ancient Sādhakas of the world h a d already passed away. T h e y shine (refulgently) in this world by means of the splendour of their own souls. 81. Both of t h e m were Yogins by n a t u r e . Those two, of great power, carried out the duties of subjects a n d love by superimposing the soul (on the supreme soul) by means of the soul. 82. He continues to be in the same state as he was in, when he was b o r n . So he is called K u m ā r a . T h e r e u p o n , his n a m e S a n a t k u m ā r a b e c a m e well established. * Samkalpa and Dharma born before all. ** Dharma, Samkalpa, Rudra and nine sages = 12. *** If the reading is pūrvolparmau "They were born before'.


48

Brahmānda Purāna

83. T h e i r twelve races a r e divine a n d a r e endowed with the groups of D e v a s ; they performed holy rites; they h a d progeny a n d they h a d great sages o r n a m e n t i n g the race. 84. After seeing those twelve Sāttsika beings b o r n of his vital airs, the lord created the Asuras, the Pitrs, the Devas a n d the h u m a n beings. 85. He created the Devas from his m o u t h ; t h e Pitrs from his chest; the h u m a n beings from his o r g a n of generation a n d he created the Asuras from his buttocks. 86. Carrying on his creative activities d u r i n g the night, the lord of the Devas created souls of h u m a n beings from t h e moonlight. He created t h e Pitrs from the n e c t a r . 87. After creating t h e Mukhya ( p r o m i n e n ŕ ) a n d Amukhya (non-prominent) Devas a n d Asuras, he created from his m i n d the h u m a n beings a n d the great Pitrs who were like their own fathers. 88. H e created the lightning, the t h u n d e r a n d t h e clouds, the red coloured rainbows, t h e Rks, t h e Yajus M a n t r a s a n d the S ā m a n songs for the fulñlment of the Yajñas. 89. T h e living beings, high and low, were born of his splendour. T h e creation of subjects by B r a h m a comprises of the Devas, the sages t h e Pitrs a n d the h u m a n beings. 90. Again he creates living beings, the mobile a n d the immobile ones, the Yaksas, the Piśācas, the G a n d h a r v a s a n d all the Apsaras, all r o u n d . 9 1 . H e created men, K i n n a r a s , Rāksasas, the birds, the animals, t h e deer a n d t h e serpents. He created the two types, the mobile a n d t h e immobile, as well as t h e Vyaya (perishable) a n d the Avyaya (Imperishable) . 92-94. T h e y a t t a i n those activities created formerly by t h e self-born lord. T h o u g h created again a n d again, they b e t a k e themselves to those alone (Viz. t h e i r own previous characteristics) such as violence a n d nonviolence, softness a n d cruelty, virtue a n d evil as well as w h a t is d o n e a n d w h a t is n o t d o n e . 1 T h e y know t h e t h r e e (entities) are n o t separate, though b o r n of t h e m alone as separate (?). This is thus, a n d n o t t h u s ; this is n e i t h e r the p a i r (thus a n d non-thus) n o r the 1. This is the inexorable Law of Karman. Even after Kalpānta, the Karma follows its doer immediately after the new creation of the world.


49

1.1.5.95-103 1

non-pair (of thus and n o n - t h u s ) . People w h o cling to Sattvag u n a a n d who view with equanimity say t h a t K a r m a n has itself as the object. 95-97. T h a t great lord created these five by means of the word Diva (Div—to shine, the heaven t h a t sparkles). He caused the extension of the created five elements by way of names ( ? ) . T h e lord gave t h e m names pertaining to the sages. He gave names to those creations among the Devas t h a t a r e not born during the night. T h u s for the reasons cited above, the creation of the worlds by the self-born lord was effected. T h e evolutes of the Prakrti beginning with Mahat and ending with Vifesa (particularised creations) were thus evolved. 98-99. T h e cosmos has the lustre of the moon a n d the sun; it is embellished by planets and stars; it is equipped with thousands of riyers, seas a n d mountains. It consists of different kinds of beautiful cities and flourishing principalities a n d territories. In this forest of Brahma, the unmanifest one, the omniscient Brahma wanders. 100-103 . This grove of trees of B r a h m a is b o r n of t h e seed viz Avyakta or Prakrti (the unmanifest o n e ) . It is stationed 2

Sāmañña-

1. T h i s reminds us of the stance of Sañjaya-Belatthi-putta in phala-sulta (para 3 2 ) of Dlgha Nikāya (p. 51 of the N a l a n d a Edt.)

2. VV.100-103 give an allegorical description of the universe or Sariisāra as the forest tree of god Brahma. T h e comparison w i t h the tree a n d the universe is as follows, Tlie Tree

The

creation

or

Samsāra

T h e Seed

Avyakta

•Stem Inner hollow

Buddhi (Intellect) Sense-organs

(Prakrti)

Branches (śākhā) in the Bd.P. T h e Mahābhūtas (elements) (but ankura or sprouts in V ā . P.) [PrakāSa in Bd.P. is probably a misprint for Praiākha in Vā.P. ] Leaves Flowers

(patra)

Viiesa (sense categories) Virtue Evil

Fruits

objects

(dharma)

(a-dharma)

Pleasure and pain

or

particular


Brahmānda Purāna

50

u n d e r its blessing. It is full of stems a n d branches in t h e form of the intellect. T h e sense-organs are the i n n e r hollows; the great Bhūtas (elements) are its l u m i n a r i e s ; * it possesses leaves, in the form of the Viśesas (particularised categories) or the objects of senses), V i r t u e a n d Evil are its beautiful flowers; pleasure a n d misery are the fruits (of this tree) ; this eternal tree of B r a h m a is the sustenance of all living beings. This forest of B r a h m a is constituted by a n d belongs to the trees of B r a h m a . T h e eternal, Avyakta (unmanifest one) of the n a t u r e of Sat a n d Asat is the cause thereof. Persons w h o think of the Tattvas (categories) call it P r a d h ā n a , P r a k r t i a n d M ā y ā . 104. Such is the A n u g r a h a 1 creation. It is r e m e m b e r e d as one with B r a h m a as the cause. T h e three creations pertain­ ing to Prakrti are the creations of B r a h m a w i t h o u t the back­ g r o u n d of consciousness or m e d i t a t i o n . 105-106. T h e six creations beginning with M u k h y a are the Vaikrtas (pre-meditated ones) a n d they have b e e n created with the b a c k g r o u n d of consciousness. T h e y function by way of Vaikalpa (i.e. t h r o u g h m e n t ) . T h e y are identified with the B r a h m a n (?)

excite­ ,

T h u s nine creations 2 a r e remembered including the Prākrtas a n d Vaikrtas. These are the creations originating t h r o u g h m u t u a l contact. T h e reason thereof has been r e m e m b e r e d by the wise or learned. 107. It is t h a t Acintyātman (incomprehensible soul) w h o is t h e m a k e r of all living beings. T h e y ( t h e l e a r n e d ) say t h a t the Vedas are his h e a d ( ? ) ; the firmament is his n a v e l ; the sun a n d t h e m o o n are his eyes; the quarters a r e his ears, know t h a t the e a r t h constitutes his feet. *

The

word Prakāia is inapplicable to Bhūtas. T h e r e a d i n g :

mahi-

bhūta-praiākha "The tree has big branches in the form of M a h ā b h ū t a s ' in the V ā . P . is better. 1.

This is called Anugraha creation as it is caused or created

t h e favour of Avyakta or Prakfti as noted in V . l 0 0 above

through

(tasya=avyaktasya

•anugrahe sthitati) 2.

As n o t e d above three are Prākrta

T h i s makes the total of nine creations.

sargas a n d six are Vaikrta ones.


1.1.5.108-118

51

108. It is from his m o u t h (face) t h a t the B r ā h m a n a s were b o r n . F r o m the front p a r t of his chest t h e Ksatriyas were b o r n . It is from his thighs t h a t the Vaiśyas were b o r n a n d the Śūdras from his feet. All the castes were b o r n of his limbs. 1 109. N ā r ā y a n a is greater t h a n and beyond the Avyakta ( t h e unmanifest o n e ) ; t h e cosmic egg is t e r m e d Avyakta, god B r a h m a himself is b o r n of the cosmic egg; the worlds have been c r e a t e d by h i m . 110. * After staying there for ten K a l p a s they go a g a i n to t h e (world of) Satya. (Those w h o reach) the world of B r a h m a a t t a i n the goal from which they never r e t u r n . 111. W i t h the exception of overlordship, they a r e on a p a r with him in regard to AiSvarya (prosperity, power to control etc.) T h e y become equal to B r a h m a as far as form a n d object are concerned. 112. T h e r e they stay endowed with pleasure a n d accompanied by themselves ( a n d their possessions). On account of the inevitability"of t h e T n a t t e r , it (he) e x p a n d s t h e P r ā k r t a (creation) himself. 113-114. T h e n , purified on t h a t occasion, they a r e to be directly connected with the diversity. J u s t as, while one is asleep t h e faculty of u n d e r s t a n d i n g functions without intel­ lectual consciousness. So also their knowledge functions w h e n purified on t h a t occasion, through the withholding of differences, b u t not so in the case of Śusmins (?) (lustrous or powerful o n e s ) . 115-116. T h e causal relations between cause a n d effects function alongwith t h e m in regard to the residents of t h e world of Brahma, who see t h e diversity; whose aberrations h a d receded a n d who stand by their own duties. T h e y are Siddhas of similar (equal) characteristics, of splendid souls a n d a r e free from sullied state. 117-118. As an effect of P r a k r t i , they possess senseorgans a n d organs of action. T h e y a r e well a r r a n g e d in their own souls. After establishing the soul, the P r a k r t i , t h a t a p p e a r s 1. *

An echo from the Purusa Sūkta ( R V . X . 9 0 ) Obviously some lines are missing from the text.


Brahmāna'a Purāna

52

in multifarious forms, a n d t h a t seems to be different from Purusa, does not function. T h e r e u p o n begins to function the creation of those things of the n a t u r e of existing cause. 119. T h e contact of the Tuktas (sages of Yogic p r a c t i c e ) , t h e seers of reality should be known as Prakrti. It is the cause of their Apavarga (salvation) of those persons w h o go on a never to r e t u r n j o u r n e y of those who are not r e b o r n . 120-122. D u e to Abhāva (Absence of r e b i r t h ) t h e y go once again to Satya-Loka as t h o u g h the flames h a v e subsided. T h e r e u p o n , w h e n those persons of joyous souls have gone above t h e three worlds, they by w h o m t h e M a h a r - L o k a was not reached, go along with them. W h e n t h e Kalpadāha ( t h e b u r n i n g of the universe at t h e end of t h e K a l p a ) is i m m i n e n t their disciples stay here. T h e y a r e the G a n d h a r v a s a n d others, the Piśācas, t h e h u m a n beings, the B r ā h m a n a s a n d others, t h e animals a n d t h e birds and t h e immobile beings alongwith t h e reptiles. 123. While on t h a t occasion the residents of the surface of the e a r t h a r e staying there, 1 the thousand rays of the sun perish ( ? ) . T h e y b e c o m e seven rays a n d each one of these rays becomes a sun. G r a d u a l l y they assume a h u n d r e d times in­ creased m a g n i t u d e a n d b u r n t h e three worlds. 124-125. T h e y b u r n t h e mobile a n d t h e immobile beings, the rivers a n d all the m o u n t a i n s : they h a d already been dry d u e to d r o u g h t a n d absence of rain. Now they a r e heated by those rays. T h e n they are completely b u r n t by t h e sun's rays a n d they b e c o m e helpless. These mobile a n d immobile beings, as well as D h a r m a a n d A d h a r m a etc. become completely b u r n t by t h e sun's rays. 126-129a. W i t h their bodies b u r n t a n d w i t h their sins completely washed off at t h e end of t h e Yuga, they become well known ( ? ) . T h e y a r e freed of their distress. (They a r e blessed) by t h e auspicious (stage of boundlessness). T h e n , after t h e night of B r a h m a , b o r n of t h e unmanifest one, has d a w n e d , those people b e c o m e j o i n e d with the people of similar forms

1.

Description of the end of a Kalpa.


1.1.5.129-141

53

a n d in the subsequent creation they become the m e n t a l progeny of B r a h m a . 129b-132. Thereafter, w h e n t h e people living in t h e three worlds have become merged w i t h t h e people, w h e n all t h e worlds have been completely b u r n e d by the seven suns, w h e n t h e e a r t h is flooded by t h e rain, b o t h in the secluded places a n d in t h e seas, t h e oceans, t h e clouds, t h e waters of the e a r t h proceed a h e a d flowing fast like arrows. T h e y are as t h o u g h m o u n t a i n s called by the n a m e Salila (water) ; w h e n m u c h w a t e r c a m e on like this a n d covered this e a r t h it b e c a m e w h a t is called Arnava (sea). 133-135. (Defective t e x t ) . ( W a t e r is called Ambhas, w h y is it so ?) Since it shines (Ābhāti) it is called Ambhas. T h e word Bhā is used in t h e sense of lustre a n d illumination. 1 T h e expanse of water has spread over everything a n d got i n t o t o u c h with all. It is known by its own lustre. Since it stuffs the entire e a r t h all r o u n d within itself a n d makes it extend, it is called Apatanu.2 T h e root T a n o t i m e a n s to extend. T h e waters a r e therefore called Apatanu. T h e word Sara indicates t h a t which is Śirna ( s h a t t e r e d ) . It is a root having various meanings. In t h a t vast expanse of water, t h e waters are not shattered. H e n c e they are called JVāras.3 136-138. In the waters, at the e n d of a t h o u s a n d Yugas, w h e n t h e d a y of B r a h m a comes to a close, when it is his night of the same d u r a t i o n within the waters, w h e n within t h e waters t h e e a r t h has lost all its fires; when it is darkness all r o u n d with not even a glimmer of light, w h e n t h e wind has, subsided—-the lord B r a h m a by w h o m t h e portion of the world is presided over desired once a g a i n to m a k e the division of this world. 139-141. In t h a t vast expanse of water, where the mobile a n d t h e immobile beings h a d perished, B r a h m a lay d o w n , B r a h m a of thousand eyes, thousand legs a n d t h o u s a n d 1.

Bd.P.

interestingly

traces ambhas 'water'

to bhā—'to shine.' It

is "merely a popular etymology. .

2. 3.

M W . does not give a word like Apatanu or Upatanu. Kara

na+śirna=waters,

is

beyond

linguistics.


54

Brahmanda Purāna

heads, the P u r u s a of golden colour, B r a h m a n a m e d N ā r ā y a n a w h o was beyond the ken of t h e sense organs lay asleep. He became awakened d u e to t h e emergence of Sattva. He woke up a n d surveyed the cosmos t h a t was a void. W i t h t h e n a r r a t i o n of this, t h e first P ā d a (section) of the P u r ā n a has been related.


SECTION TWO ANUSAÑGA-PĀDA


CHAPTER

SIX

The Kalpas and Manvantaras1 Their Duration Sūta said : 1. On h e a r i n g the first P ā d a (section) the m a i n t h e m e of which is the P r a k r t i , thus recounted, K ā p e y a ( K ā ś y a p e y a in Vā.P.) who was delighted h a d some doubts. 2-3. After p r o p i t i a t i n g the S ū t a by m e a n s of words ( a n d desirous of h e a r i n g ) a n o t h e r story for t h a t purpose, (he said) — " H e r e a f t e r O Sage conversant with the K a l p a , recount P r a t i s a n d h i t o m e . I wish to know this, viz. : the interim period between t h e two K a l p a s i.e. t h e K a l p a t h a t has passed a n d t h e K a l p a t h a t is c u r r e n t . I wish to know t h e P r a t i s a n d h i ( t h e period of t r a n s i t ) between these two. I n d e e d , you are sufficiently well-versed." 4. On being thus requested by K ā p e y a , Sūta, the most excellent a m o n g eloquent m e n , began to n a r r a t e the origin of the three worlds entirely. Sūta said : 5. Now I shall describe factually, O m e n of holy vows, the K a l p a of the past a n d t h e K a l p a of the future a n d t h e period of transit t h a t is between these two. 6. (I shall also describe) O m e n of holy rites, the dif­ ferent M a n v a n t a r a s in the Kalpas. T h e K a l p a t h a t is c u r r e n t now is V a r ā h a — a n auspicious K a l p a . 1.

Description of Manvantaras is one of the main characteristics of a

Purāna. We have a description of these Manvantaras in Bh.P. V I I I . 1 . 1 - 2 9 . K P . I . 5 1 , NP.I.40-17-37, V P . I I I . 1.1-9 and others. But this chapter like Vā.P. 7 describes the Kalpas and the interim period joining the Kalpas. A number of verses are c o m m o n to Vā.P.7 and this chapter.


58

BrahmSnda Purāna

7. U n d e r s t a n d the intervening transitional stage between this K a l p a a n d the old ( a n c i e n t ) K a l p a t h a t preceded this a n d passed away. 8. W h e n t h e previous K a l p a recedes w i t h o u t a Prati­ sandhi ( i n t e r m e d i a t e p e r i o d ) , a n o t h e r K a l p a begins again with J a n a l o k a a n d others. 9. T w o (consecutive) K a l p a s have a transitional stage separating t h e m mutually. All beings a r e completely annihilat­ ed at the end of a K a l p a . 10a. T h e Period intervening between the end of K a l p a is called* Pratisandhi.1

that

lOb-ll. In a M a n v a n t a r a , the junctions of those periods of time called Yugas are unbroken. T h e M a n v a n t a r a s function with interconnections of the Yugas. T h e previous Kalpas have been recounted briefly (?) in the Prakriyā-pāda. 12-14. E a c h K a l p a has a Pūrva-Ardha (former half) a n d Para-Ardha ( l a t t e r h a l f ) . Therefore, when a K a l p a passes by, its latter h a l f is followed by the former half of the next K a l p a . T h e other K a l p a s also will follow suit with their latter halves increased(?). O B r ā h m a n a s , the K a l p a t h a t is present now is the first a m o n g them. It has a Pūrva-Ardha a n d a Para-Ardha. T h e second one is called Para. This is the period of sustenance. It is r e m e m b e r e d t h a t the period of dissolution is thereafter. 15. Prior to this K a l p a was the ancient K a l p a that h a d passed by at the end of a thousand sets of four Yugas along­ with the M a n v a n t a r a s . 16-18. W h e n the K a l p a comes to a close a n d the time of universal b u r n i n g arrives (?), t h e Devas moving a b o u t in the aerial chariots, the stars, planets a n d the constellations, t h e moon, the sun etc.—all these meritorious souls were twentyeight crores in n u m b e r . T h e i r n u m b e r in all the fourteen *

T h e reading: na vidyate ' T h e Pratisandhi does not exist between the

past a n d the present K a l p a ' is obviously V ā . P . 7.9 1.

( = t h i s verse in Bd.P.)

wrong.

Hence

the

reading

of

is accepted.

This is the definition of Pratisandhi. In Manvantaras, the y u g a period

connecting t w o manvantaras is unbroken but at the end of the Kalpa, the universe gets destroyed-as described in V V . 1 6 ff below.


1.2.6.19-27

59

M a n v a n t a r a s is the same. Therefore their total n u m b e r in all t h e M a n v a n t a r a s together was (14 X 28 = ) 392 crores. 19. F u r t h e r , in everyone of the K a l p a s , t h e Devas moving a b o u t in aerial chariots a r e r e m e m b e r e d to be seventy thousand more. 20. In t h e fourteen M a n v a n t a r a s t h e r e were the Devas, t h e Pitrs a n d t h e sages imbibing n e c t a r ( A m r t a p ā s ) in t h e f i r m a m e n t a n d heaven. 2 1 . T h e y h a d their servants (followers), wives a n d sons. At t h a t t i m e , t h e Devas in the firmament were beyond t h e discipline of the Varnas (castes) a n d the Āśramas (stages in life). 22. Thereafter, w h e n t h e a n n i h i l a t i o n of all living beings along w i t h objects a p p r o a c h e d , all of t h e m b e c a m e persons of equal position a n d c o n d i t i o n w i t h those t h a t h a d a t t a i n e d Sāyujya ( t h e salvation of m e r g i n g with t h e d i v i n i t y ) . 23-25. Thereafter, d u e to t h e inevitability of t h e re­ c u r r e n c e of t h e i n t e l l e c t * of t h e soul (?) t h e Devas, t h e residents of t h e t h r e e worlds, b e c o m e persons identifying w i t h and taking p r i d e in the different positions h e r e . W h e n the t i m e of sustenance was complete, w h e n t h e Paścimottara ( t h e l a t t e r a n d later period) was i m m i n e n t , w h e n t h e a n n i h i l a t i o n arrived, the enthusiasic Devas in the last days of t h e K a l p a , p a r t i a l l y a b a n d o n e d their abodes. 1 Thereafter, they became excited a n d d i r e c t e d their m i n d s towards t h e Maharloka. 26. (Defective t e x t ) . T h e y practise Yoga a n d m a k e use of the great (thing) in t h e b o d y * * (?) All of t h e m a b o u n d in purity. T h e y have achieved the m e n t a l Siddhi ( a c h i e v e m e n t ) . 27. T h e M a h a r - l o k a was a t t a i n e d b y B r ā h m a n a s , Ksattriyas, Vaiśyas a n d o t h e r people b o r n of t h e m , alongwith those residents of K a l p a .

* stood

1. of g o d ** teyuktā

Vā.P.8.23

the

( = Bd.P.

present verse) reads buddhvā ' H a v i n g under­

inevitability.' W . 2 4 - 3 1 describe the progress of gods upto Satya-loka, the region

Brahma. T h e f i r s t line i n the corresponding V ā . P . verse upapadyante

mahasi-sthaih

Śaririkaih'

( 8 . 2 6 ) reads:

j

w i t h their bodies stationed in mahas {Maharloka) they practise

etc.


Brahmanda Purāna

60

28. After going to M a h a r l o k a , the fourteen groups of the Devas b e c o m e agitated. Thereafter, they directed their m i n d towards J a n a l o k a . 29. In this o r d e r t h e residents of t h e K a l p a m u t u a l l y ( ? ) proceeded for thousands of Yugas a c c o r d i n g to t h e reckoning of t h e Devas. 30. All of t h e m a b o u n d e d in purity. T h e y have achieved the m e n t a l Siddhi ( a c h i e v e m e n t o f spiritual p o w e r s ) , t h e J a n a (Loka) was a t t a i n e d by those residents of K a l p a together. 3 1 . After staying there for ten K a l p a s , they go to the Satya ( L o k a ) once a g a i n . After going to the world of B r a h m a , they a t t a i n a goal from where there is no r e t u r n . 32. Except t h e overlordship, they become equal to B r a h m a . 1 T h e y are equal to B r a h m a in regard to features a n d object (of t h e sense organs) (i.e. V i s a y a ) . 33. T h e r e they stay with pleasure in the S a m y a m a s * (? worlds of t h a t n a m e ) . After a t t a i n i n g bliss from B r a h m a n , they become liberated a l o n g w i t h B r a h m a . 34. In view of t h e inevitability of affairs concerning ( t h e course of) P r a k r t i , they r e m a i n ( b o u n d along) with honour, worship etc. as is p r o d u c e d at the same t i m e . * * 35. J u s t as in t h e case of a s l e e p n g person the faculty of knowledge functions without (clearcut) perceptions (Abuddhipūrvam), so also when they a r e purified a n d rendered service, t h e bliss begins to function. 36. (The bliss begins to function) by the withholdings of differences. These are different in regard to lustrous ones. Along with t h e m their effects a n d instruments (sense organs) also d e v e l o p . 37-38. multiplicity

1.

Of those residents of B r a h m a ' s region who observe (and separateness) a n d whose authority has been

Cf. Brahma-sūtra IV.4.17-18 where t h e released soul is stated to have

all the Lordly powers e x c e p t the power of

creation

of

the

universe.

The

powers of the released soul are not unlimited. *

V ā . P . 8 . 3 3 b reads: Prasamgamāt—'due to their close contact

(with

Brahma)'. **

T h e y remain

at that time.

( b o u n d ) in their separateness produced

(retained)


61

1.2.6.39-48

w i t h d r a w n a n d who abide by their righteous duties. Those Siddhis have similar characteristics. T h e y are of p u r e souls a n d are unsullied. In their P r ā k r t a form they are e q u i p p e d with sense organs b u t they are stabilised in their own souls. 39. After proclaiming itself (or the soul), t h e P r a k r t i is factually observed as different from Purusa a n d as multifarious a n d as such it functions. 40. Again when the creation begins to function, Prakrti should be known in its connection with the liberated (?) souls who perceive reality a n d who are identical w i t h the existent causes. ~— y 4 1 . T h e r e , those persons a t t a i n i n g salvation do not J r e t u r n by t h e same p a t h (of Sarhsāra ). There non-existence h a d been caused once again like t h a t of the blazing flames that h a d b e e n extinguished. 1 y 42. While those n o b l e souls h a d gone far above t h e three worlds a l o n g w i t h these, the M a h a r l o k a is not occupied by t h e m . 43. W h e n t h e b u r n i n g of K a l p a is i m m i n e n t , the G a n d h a r v a s a n d others, t h e Piśācas ( v a m p i r e s ) , the B r ā h m a n a s a n d o t h e r h u m a n beings become their disciples.* 44-45. (So also) t h e animals a n d birds, t h e immobile beings a n d t h e reptiles. While those residents of t h e surface of the e a r t h s t a n d t h e r e a t t h a t time, the t h o u s a n d rays t h a t manifest themselves b e c o m e (combined a n d c o n c e n t r a t e d i n t o ) seven rays a n d each one of t h e rays becomes a S u n . 2 46-48. Rising up gradually, they b u r n t h e t h r e e worlds. T h e mobile a n d the immobile beings, t h e rivers a n d all t h e m o u n t a i n s t h a t h a d a l r e a d y been dried u p d u e t o absence of r a i n a r e inflamed a n d afflicted by t h e suns. Completely 1.

Cf. the concept of Brahma-nirvāna in the BG. V V . 2 4 - 2 6 .

*

Śisyāh in Bd.P. is probably a misprint for Śis(āh 'remaining

ones'

(found in V ā . P . in corres. verse 8 . 4 3 b ) . A s this is description of the K a l p ā n t a , Sisfa is a better reading. 2.

V V . 4 3 - 6 0 . T h i s description of the Kalpa-dāha a n d the e n d of the

universe is

a

verbatim

repetition

of VV.121-138

of

the

last

chapter.

T h e popular etymologies of ambhas, salila, JVara oi Nāra all m e a n i n g 'water' a n d the derivation of N ā r ā y a n a h a v e b e e n noted there.


62

Brakmānda Purāna

b u r n t by the rays of the suns, they become helpless. T h e mobile a n d the immobile beings of the n a t u r e of virtue as well as evil get their bodies b u r n e d . In t h e interval between the two Yugas, they get rid of their sins. 49. T h e y are well k n o w n * a n d freed from t h e sunshine by t h e auspicious ( r a i n ) t h a t has great continuity shower­ ing incessantly. Thereafter, those people a r e joined with other people of similar forms a n d features. 50. After staying there d u r i n g the n i g h t of B r a h m a born of the unmanifest one, they become t h e m e n t a l sons of B r a h m a at the time of subsequent c r e a t i o n . 51-56. T h e n , when the residents of t h e three worlds h a d become p r o p e r * *(?) ( o r equipped) with people, w h e n t h e worlds had been completely b u r n e d down by the seven suns, when t h e e a r t h h a d been flooded with r a i n , when the seas h a d become desolate, all the waters of the oceans, clouds a n d t h e e a r t h move a h e a d scattered (like a r r o w s ) . T h e y have the n a m e Salila. T h e y followed (one after the o t h e r ) . T h a t flood of water gathered together in a b u n d a n c e . W h e n t h a t vast sheet of water covered t h e e a r t h , it b e c a m e known by the n a m e Arnava ( s e a ) . This water is called Ambhas because it shone and spread. T h e water reached everywhere. The root y/Bhā has the sense of Vyāpti (spreading) a n d Dipti (shining). Since it spread over t h e entire e a r t h all r o u n d w i t h i n itself, water is r e m e m b e r e d as Tanus. T h e root y/Tan is used in the sense of extension. T h e root \/Śar i.e. Śr has different m e a n ­ ings. I t m e a n s " t o become shattered o r s c a t t e r e d " . 57-62. In the vast sheet of water, t h e waters are not quick in m o t i o n (śighrāh) therefore, they are called Nāras. At t h e end of t h e thousand Yugas, when the d a y of B r a h m a had c o m e to a close, when the night of so m u c h ( = the same) d u r a ­ tion h a d b e e n present within the watery expanse, when the

*

Tonya tayā hyanirmuktāfi 'freed from that species' in V ā . P . 7 . 4 9 is a

better reading. **

apravrtttsu ( V ā . P . 7 . 5 2 a ) 'when all the people, residents of the three

worlds are extinct'. T h i s reading is more suitable in the context t h a n upapannesu of the B d . P . here.


63

1.2.6.63-68

surface of the e a r t h h a d become lost within t h a t water, when all fires were extinguished, w h e n the wind had become totally calm a n d motionless, when there had been darkness all round w i t h o u t any light, this (universe) h a d been presided over by this person. He is Brahma, the lord. He wished again to divide this world. In t h a t vast sheet of water where the mobile a n d the immobile beings have perished, B r a h m a becomes a person with thousand (i.e. i n n u m e r a b l e ) eyes, thousand feet, thousand heads one who has conquered all the sense-organs a n d one with golden complexion. T h e y cite this verse regarding N ā r ā y a n a in this connection. " T h e waters are Nāras. We have heard t h a t they con­ stitute his bodies. T h e y a r e being filled in. Since he stays therein, he is remembered as N ā r ā y a n a . 63. T h e first Prajāpati (lord of subjects) is a person of good m i n d . 1 He has a thousand heads, a thousand feet, a thousand eyes, a thousand faces (mouths) and a thousand arms. He performs a thousand acts. He is explained as a person identical with t h e three Vedas. 64. He has t h e lustre a n d colour of the sun. He is the protector of the universe. He is single. He is the first Virāf (cosmic p e r s o n a g e ) . He is H i r a n y a g a r b h a of noble soul. He is beyond the K e n of m i n d . 65. In the beginning of the K a l p a , the Lord a b o u n d s in Rajas quality a n d after becoming B r a h m a , he b r o u g h t a b o u t t h e c r e a t i o n of the world. In t h e e n d of the K a l p a , he a b o u n d s in T a m a s , a n d after becoming K ā l a , he devoured it again. 66. It is reported t h a t in the cosmic ocean, N ā r ā y a n a with the p r e p o n d e r a n c e of Sattva guna divides himself threefold a n d abides in the three worlds. 67-68. By means of the three (qualities or forms), he creates, devours a n d sees or protects (the w o r l d ) . In the vast

1.

Cf.

Purusa

Sūkta

(RV.X.90). The

V e d i c concept

regarding

Virāj, Hiranya-garbha here identified with Brahma or P u r u s a of the Purusasūkta are the different stages in the evolution. T h a t Purusa is credited with three gunas for the creation, sustenance and destruction of the universe.


64

Brahmānia

Purāna

sheet of water, w h e n the mobile a n d the i m m o b i l e beings have perished, at the end of a thousand sets of four Yugas, w h e n ( t h e earth) is covered on all sides w i t h water, B r a h m a n a m e d N ā r ā y a n a shines himself in the universe. 69. All the subjects of the four types (i.e. Svedaja, Andaja, Udbhijja a n d Jarāyujd) are covered with T a m a s , d u e to t h e Śakti of B r a h m a . In t h e M a h a r l o k a , t h e great sages see K ā l a (God of d e a t h ) sleeping. 70. At t h a t time t h e great sages referred to above a r e Bhrgu a n d others. 1 T h e great sages, w h e n the K a l p a comes to a close, are the eight sages, Satya a n d others. T h e great t h i n g t h a t is surrounded by t h e m when they revolve is t h e Mahat* (1) 71. T h e root \/Rs\\&& t h e sense of Gaīt(movement). T h e above n a m e (i.e. Rsi) is derived from t h a t r o o t . 2 Since they move about with t h e i r Sattva a n d since they are great, they a r e called Maharsis ( G r e a t sages). 72. T h e sleeping K ā l a was then seen by those seven great sages, viz. Sattva (? S a t y a ) a n d others w h o a r e stationed in t h e M a h a r l o k a in t h e previous K a l p a . 73. T h u s B r a h m a ( c o n t i n u e s t o function) i n thousands of nights. T h e great sages w h o were b r o u g h t by h i m t h e n saw t h e sleeping K ā l a . 74. Since, in t h e beginning of the K a l p a , B r a h m a evolv­ ed fourteen assemblages (worlds) (?) of diverse forms, it is 3 defined as K a l p a . 75. He is t h e creator of all living beings again a n d again, in the beginnings of the K a l p a s . T h e great lord is b o t h Vyakta (manifest) a n d Avyakta ( u n m a n i f e s t ) . T h i s entire universe is evolved by him.

1.

T h e concept of Saptarsis ( s e v e n sages) ursa major is astronomical in

the V e d i c period. Varāhamihira in Brhat-sarhhitā also treats t h e m from astro­ nomical point. In the M b h . a n d the Purānas, their status as "mind-born s o n s " of Brahma becomes prominent. But their survival after deluges as stated here, hints at their original astronomical aspect. 2.

A correct etymology.

3.

Definition of K a l p a ; cf. Vā.p.7.77.

*

T h i s verse is obscure. T h e correspondence V. in Vā.P.8.83 reads:


1.2.6.76-77—7.1-5a

65

76. T h u s the inter-relation between two Kalpas has been recounted. T h e present has become the antecedent state in between the two. 77. Everything has been recounted briefly in the previous K a l p a in the m a n n e r as it was factually. Now I shall recount the current K a l p a . U n d e r s t a n d the same.

C H A P T E R SEVEN Knowledge About the World (Geographical divisions of the their d u r a t i o n — G e o g r a p h y and

villages—-Flora

earth—Four

Yugas

and

of c o n t i n e n t s — c o n t i n e n t s , towns

a n d f a u n a — p e o p l e — c a s t e s a n d stages in

Life) Sill a said : 1. He passed a period of time equal to a thousand Yugas as his night. At the end of the night, B r a h m a creates the universe through the cause (potentiality) of creation. 2. At that time, in t h a t vast expanse of water, B r a h m a became wind and moved a b o u t (in that ocean) enveloped in darkness when the mobile and the immobile beings h a d ( a l r e a d y ) perished ( a n d became non-existent). 3-4a. He flooded the surface of the e a r t h all round with water. W h e n the elements had been stationed in S a t y a * ( t r u t h ) along with their divisions, he moved about like the glowworm d u r i n g t h e nights in t h e rainy season. 4b-5a. He was moving about quickly as he pleased, thinking by means of his intellect, about the means of stabiliza­ tion.

*

V ā . P . 8 . 3 samantāt—all

round.


Brahmānda Puārna

66

5b-8a. He was searching for the earth. He realized t h a t the earth was within the water. After knowing t h a t one of them was blind (?) the lord who was capable of lifting up the e a r t h assumed the truthful form of a b o a r as remembered in the beginnings of the previous Kalpas. T h e n he entered the water. T h a t lord of subjects wished to contact the e a r t h covered with waters. He lifted up the e a r t h a n d placed it again along w i t h its c h i l d * (Reference to N a r a k a ? ) . 8b-9a. He deposited the waters of t h e oceans in the oceans a n d the waters of the rivers in the rivers separately. After levelling the e a r t h he picked up and gathered the m o u n t a i n s . 9b-11. As the previous creation was being b u r n e d for­ merly by the S a m v a r t a k a fire, the mountains of t h a t period had been melted by that fire. T h e y were t h e n scattered by the wind. Due to dullness, they became solidified. Wherever the (molten rocks) were spilt there arose a m o u n t a i n . T h e y are called Acalas1 (not-moving or immobile) because their ridges were immovable. T h e y a r e r e m e m b e r e d as Parvatas because they h a d Parvans (or j o i n t s ) . 12-14. T h e y are (called) Giris because they h a d been swallowed. T h e y are Siloccaya because they h a d moved about (Ayana). T h e n , after lifting up the e a r t h from within the waters, the lord created seven times seven subcontinents in its seven continents. After levelling the uneven grounds he created m o u n t a i n s all r o u n d by means of rocks. T h e r e a r e only fortynine sub-continents in those con­ t i n e n t s . 8 As m a n y m o u n t a i n s (i.e. 49) a r e situated at the borders of the sub-continents. *

V ā . P . 8 a reads:

apas

tāsu

tu

vinyasan

'He

deposited

the

waters

(over the surface of the earth'. 1.

T h e s e verses give 'etymology' of the synonyms for

a

mountain.

T h i s Purāna is full of semantic etymologies i.e. etymologies based on the mean­ ing of the word and not its form. Sometimes, they are grammatically (even as phonetic derivation) correct, but that is none of the concern of the Purānawriter.

understandable but ayanāt

tu

stloccayah 'the mountains are called siloccaya because of their movements'

T h u s acala 'a mountain', giri-gri—is

is

phonetically 2.

not

defensible.

Every continent has seven sub-continents. T h u s the number of sub­

continents becomes 7 x 7 = 4 9 . Their list is described later in chs. 18 and 19.


1.2.7.15-24

67

15-20. In h e a v e n * etc. they are enveloped in splendour n a t u r a l l y a n d not otherwise. T h e seven continents a n d oceans encircle one another. T h e y are situated after surrounding one another naturally. T h e four worlds are the Bhū a.nd others. As before, Brahma created the m o o n and the sun along with the planets as well as the immobile beings all round, as B r a h m a created the Devas of this K a l p a , who were Sthānins (persons occupying the a b o d e s ) . He created the following things as w e l l ) : — the waters, the fire, the earth, the wind, the firmament, the heaven, the Dyaus ( t h e ethereal w o r l d ) , the quarters, the oceans, the rivers, the mountains, the souls of medicinal herbs, the souls of trees a n d creepers, the units of time such as Lavas, Kāfthās, Kalās a n d Muhūrtas, the twilight, the nights, the days; the halfmonths,- the months, the Ayanas (transits, one in the six m o n t h s ) , the years and the Yugas. He created the abodes and ( t h e dwellers t h e r e i n ) who take pride in the abodes separately by laying claims to them. 2 1 . After creating the souls for the abodes, he created the period of Yugas namely K t t a , T r e t ā , D v ā p a r a a n d Tisya (i.e. K a l i ) . 22. At the beginning of the K a l p a , he created the sub­ jects at the outset. Those subjects of the previous K a l p a have been recounted to you by m e . 23-24. In t h a t K a l p a that was being dissolved (i.e. t e r m i n a t e d ) , the subjects were b u r n t by the fire. Those t h a t h a d not reached Tapo-loka a n d those t h a t remained on the earth, r e t u r n at the time of the subsequent creation for the sake of being visible. 1 Those subjects who stay there for being visible, do so for the sake of subsequent creation.

*

Vā.P.8.15

reads—sargādau

sannivistās

it

'They

(mountains)

assembled there at the beginning of creation'. This reading is better

were than

that in the Bd.P. here as Svarga ( H e a v e n ) is not relevant in the context. 1.

V V . 2 3 ff. This is the inexorable l a w of Karma. There may be the

dissolution of the universe at the end of a Kalpa, but the beings whose K a r m a s have not been exhausted

(i.e.

w h o have not attained M o k s a )

are reborn

in the subsequent Kalpa. T h i s idea has been emphatically repeated in this Purāna.


Brahmānda Purāna

68

25. Being created, they exist for the sake of their pro­ geny. T h e y are regarded as having achieved the four Purusārthas viz. : D h a r m a , Artha, K a m a a n d Moksa. 26. T h e Devas, the—Pitrs and the h u m a n beings ( a r e c r e a t e d ) in o r d e r ; thereafter, they equipped themselves with p e n a n c e ; they filled the abodes at the outset. 27. I n d e e d , those h u m a n beings become B r ā h m a n a s and souls of spiritual achievement. D u e to their K a r m a n con­ taminated by the faults of hatred a n d too m u c h of a t t a c h m e n t * they went to heaven (?) 28. While r e t u r n i n g in an embodied state, they are b o r n in every Yuga. W i t h the r e m n a n t s of the fruits of their K a r m a n , (they are born again a n d again) ; they are well known as Tadātmakas (? Identified with t h e m ) . 29-30. T h e people bound by the a d v e n t of (a new) K a l p a are born from the J a n a l o k a . T h a t which is their cause in the waters is indicated by means of the K a r m a n * * ( ? ) . From the J a n a l o k a , they are born t h r o u g h auspicious and inauspicious K a r m a n s . T h e y assume physical bodies of diverse forms, in the different species. 31. T h e subjects beginning with the Devas and ending with the immobile beings are b o r n (influencing) themselves mutually. T h e i r p u r e ( o r sanctified) K a r m a n s usually pre­ dominated. 32. Therefore, they attained only those names and features (which they h a d before). Again a n d again they are b o r n w i t h names and forms in the (different) K a l p a s . 33-34. Thereafter, is the creation of B r a h m a who is de­ sirous of creating the Upasrsfi (subsidiary c r e a t i o n ) . Even as he was m e d i t a t i n g on those subjects, since he was of truthful med­ itation, a thousand couples came out of his m o u t h . It is b u t n a t u r a l t h a t they were people of great brilliance with the Sattva quality p r e d o m i n a n t . * For āsañga-dnesa-yuktena, m o t i v a t e d by non-hatred.' ** reads:

For

apsu

yah

kāranam

Vā.P.8

reads:

sañgādvesa-yuktena

'(acts)

tesām bodhayan karmana tu sah / Vā.P.8.30a

āiayah kāranam tatra boddhavyam karmanārh tu sah / ' P l a c e of residence should be known as its cause' etc.


69

1.2.7.35-43

35. He created a n o t h e r thousand couples t h r o u g h his eyes. All of t h e m h a d the Rajas quality p r e d o m i n a n t . T h e y were Sustains (lustrous ones) a n d Amarsins ( i n t o l e r a n t ) . 36. He created a thousand (couples) of Asats ( n o t good ones) from his arms. D o m i n a t e d as they were from Rajas a n d T a m a s , they are r e m e m b e r e d as grha-śila* ( a t t a c h e d to houses). 37-38. T h e couples alone gave birth frequently till t h e end of their lives. Kūtakas (? deceitful ones) a n d Akūtakas (nondeceitful) are born (of those couples) who are mortals ( a b o u t to d i e ) . Since after generating the family, they a b a n d o n e d their bodies. Even since then there is the occurrence of copulation in this K a l p a . 39. In the K r t a age, 1 it is by m e n t a l m e d i t a t i o n t h a t pure objects of senses such as Śabda (sound a n d others) each of which is of five characteristics ( b e c a m e a v a i l a b l e ) . 40. T h u s with m e n t a l emotions, those subjects without progeny stay d e a r * * ( ? ) So also the families were born with which this universe was filled u p . 4 1 . T h e y resort to rivers, lakes and oceans as well as to mountains. T h e n those subjects have very little pleasure in t h a t war(?) but they move in i t . * * * 42. T h e y say t h a t t h e earth with Rasa (juice, water,) is their food. Desirous of m e n t a l siddhis those subjects m o v e a b o u t as they please. 43. In the K r t a y u g a , the subjects ( h u m a n beings etc.) h a d equal length of life, happiness a n d beauty. In the first Yuga, at the beginning of the K a l p a , there was no D h a r m a a n d Adharma. *

ihā-Sila

(indulging in desires)

in Vā.P.7.39.

1.

VV.39-57 give a rosy picture of the K r t a Yuga.

**

T h e corresponding verse viz. V ā . P . 8 . 4 6 a reads: ityevam tnānasi pūrvam prāk-srstir yd prajdpateh

/

'in this w a y formerly the preliminary creation was mental (after that it was born of copulation. T h e whole world is filled w i t h t h a t ) . *** verse

in

Yuddht in the text is strange; it should be Yuge. T h e corresponding Vā.P.

(8.47b) tadā

reads:

nātyambu-śitosnā yuge

etc.

' T h e y wandered (lived) in that Y u g a w h e n there was no excess of heat, cold

or

rain'.


70

a

Brahmān4 Puārna

44-45a. In every Yuga, they were born with their res­ pective rights and a u t h o r i t y . T h e y say t h a t the K r t a yuga at the beginning, h a d four thousand years in accordance with the reckoning of the gods. T h e two periods of j u n c t i o n consisted of four h u n d r e d years. 45b-46a. T h e r e were thousands of subjects of great repute. T h e y had no h i n d r a n c e anywhere. T h e r e were no mutually clashing opposites. T h e r e was no Krama (one gradually succeeding a n o t h e r ) . 46b-47. Those subjects had no regular abodes and resorts. T h e y were residents of m o u n t a i n s a n d seas. T h e y were i m m u n e from sorrow. ( T h e quality called) Sattva was predomi­ n a n t in t h e m . T h e subjects were exclusively h a p p y . T h e y always moved a b o u t as they pleased. T h e y were always delight­ ed in their minds. 48. T h e r e were neither animals nor birds. T h e r e were no reptiles then. T h e r e were no plants etc. T h e r e were no drunkards, m a d and furious persons. This is the m a n n e r of Dharma. 49. For their sustenance, there were flowers and fruits alongwith bulbous roots. T h e time was entirely and exclusively pleasant; it was n e i t h e r too hot n o r too chill. 50. Whatever they desire is achieved everywhere and for ever. By their meditations, everything grows up from t h e n e t h e r worlds through t h e e a r t h . 5 1 . ( T h e vegetation) caused strength a n d fineness of complexion u n t o them. It destroyed their sickness a n d old age, Those subjects had stable (everlasting) youth with their bodies not requiring purificatory rites. 52. In their case, even without copulation^subjects (pro­ geny) are born t h r o u g h mere m e n t a l conception. T h e birth a n d features a r e t h e same ( i n regard to everyone). T h e y are on a p a r (with one a n o t h e r ) a n d they a r e pleased a n d h a p p y . 53. At that time, t h e r e is truthfulness, absence of greed, satisfaction, happiness a n d self-control. In regard to beauty, longevity, aesthetic accomplishments a n d other activities, all of t h e m a r e devoid of a n y m u t u a l difference.


71

1.2.7.54-64a

54. T h e sustenance of the subjects was (abuddhipūrvika) without any conscious intellectual effort. Since the door is open* (i.e. there are facilities to auspicious a n d evil activities) theie is lack of conscious effort. 55. At t h a t time there was no systematic classification of castes a n d stages of life. T h e r e were no thieves. T h e y used to d e a l with one a n o t h e r without a n y i n t i m a t e desire or hatred. 56. In the K r t a yuga, all the subjects a r e b o r n with e q u a l beauty, features a n d s p a n of life. T h e y a r e devoid of in­ feriority a n d superiority. Usually they are h a p p y , they at e free from sorrow. 57-58. T h e y have neither gain nor loss; neither friends nor enemies; no likes or dislikes. Since they are devoid of desire, their sense-object functions mentally. T h e y do not violently injure m u t u a l l y nor do they favour one a n o t h e r t h e n . 59. In the K r t a y u g a , knowledge is the greatest thing. 1 In the T r e t ā , it is said to be the institution of Yajña (sacrifice) (as the greatest t h i n g ) . In the D v ā p a r a , war began to function; a n d in the Kaliyuga, it is stealth alone. 60. T h e K r t a Yuga is characterised by Sattva quality; the T r e t ā Yuga by Rajas quality, the D v ā p a r a by (a m i x t u r e of) Rajas a n d T a m a s qualities, while the Kali, (only) by T a m a s quality. T h u s the situation of the Gunas in the Yugas should be known. 61-64a. 2 This is the time in the Krta Yuga. U n d e r s t a n d ( t h e period of) its j u n c t i o n . F o u r thousand (divine) years con­ stitute the Krta Yuga. T h e parts of its j u n c t i o n a r e eight h u n d r e d years, according to divine reckoning. It comprises of four thousand h u m a n years. ( ? ) T h e n , a m o n g t h e m there a r e *

V ā . P . 8 . 6 1 a (a corresponding verse) reads:

... .hrtayugt

karmanoh

for Krta-dvārs karmanah

in the Bd.P. which is

obscure: T h e verse m e a n s : " I n the Krta Age, there was no inclination both to p i o u s a n d impious d e e d s " . 1.

V V . 5 9 - 6 0 give a comparative statement of the special features of

four Yugas. 2.

VV.61-71

K r t a a n d Tretā.

describe

the

state

in

the period intervening between


Brahmānda Purāna

72

neither sudden clamour and outcry, nor contrarities ( ? ) . T h e n , w h e n t h a t K r t a yuga along with the p a r t of the j u n c t i o n has passed, the entire Y u g a d h a r m a (Duty etc. characteristics of the Yuga) becomes reduced to a quaricr. 64b-65. T h a t is the time of junction of the Yuga, the Sandhyā (transitional p e r i o d ) of what has passed off. T h u s when the Sandhyādharma(Du.ty characteristics of the transitional stage from K i t a y u g a ) is reduced to a q u a r t e r (?) it vanishes within the K r t a y u g a without any vestige*. 66. W h e n the j u n c t i o n has passed away, there was m e n t a l progeny. T h e achievement of spirituality was in a n o t h e r Yuga called T r e t ā , next to K r t a . 67. T h e eight m e n t a l Siddhis that h a d been recounted (as existent) by me in the beginning of the creation, become reduced gradually. 68. In the beginning of the K a l p a , there is one single mental Siddhi, in the K r t a Yuga, in all the M a n v a n t a r a s in accordance with t h e division of the four Yugas. 69. T h e origin of Karmasiddhi (achievement of K a r m a n ) in K r t a is brought about by the conduct of the people of different castes a n d stages of life (?). T h e Sandhyā (junction) of the K r t a is reduced by a q u a r t e r (?) 70. These parts of the junctions of K r t a take tip the three (? other parts) and those Yuga Dharmas as well as penance, learning, strength and longevity decrease a n d decline. 7 1 . W h e n the K r t a yuga and its transitional part have passed, O excellent sages, it is the beginning of T r e t ā yuga along with its parts. 72-73. W h e n the p a r t of K r t a yuga has passed off and those seven (? siddhis) remained lingering at the beginning of the T r e t ā yuga that h a d begun to function in the early p a r t of the K a l p a , the (one remaining) Siddhi perishes d u e to efflux of time a n d not otherwise; when t h a t Siddhi disappeared a n o t h e r Siddhi was b o r n . *

The

corresponding

verse

Vā.P.70b-71a:

' ' W h e n at the e n d of the yuga, w h e n e v e n the transitional period also expires, the quarter of the dharma characteristic of this transitional period of the yuga, remains."


1.2.7.74-84

73

74. (Defective) Parts of waters returned ( t o the firma­ m e n t ) in the form of clouds. F r o m t h e t h u n d e r i n g clouds the showering of r a i n began to function. 75. W h e n the surface of the e a r t h had been perfected (watered) by t h a t r a i n occurring only once the subjects c a m e into being. T h e r e u p o n , the trees b e c a m e designated as their abodes. 76. All kinds of worldly enjoyment of those subjects e m a n a t e d from t h e m ( t h e trees). In the beginning of the T r e t ā yuga, the subjects maintained themselves with t h e m . 77. (Defective) then, after t h e lapse of a great deal of time, due to their own change, they h a d a sudden emotion in the form of a great desire for close contact. 78. In the case of women (of the modern days) mens­ truation occurs till the end of their life (?) But then (i.e. in the T r e t ā y u g a ) , t h a t did not take place on account of the power of the Yuga. 79. But in the case of those women (oflater days), the menstrual flow began to function m o n t h by m o n t h . As a con­ sequence thereof, sexual intercourse also takes place then. 80-81. T h e y had the physical contact every m o n t h because of their emotional feelings at that time. W h e n there is no menstrual flow at the proper time, the conception took place. On account of their contrary n a t u r e (?), all those trees designa­ ted as their abodes a n d evolved at t h a t time, perish thereafter. 82. W h e n they h a d perished, the subjects became be­ wildered a n d agitated in all their sense-organs. T h e y began to meditate on their Siddhi. T h e y were truthful in their m e d i t a t i o n then. 83-84. Those trees designated as their abodes appeared in front of them. T h e y yielded clothes, fruits a n d o r n a m e n t s . Similarly, honey of great potency of metaphysical* significance was produced in every leafy cup. It was a c c o m p a n i e d by the juice of the G a n d h a r v a s ( ? ) . * * [Gandharvānām rasānvitam in Bd.P. It should be Gandha-vama-rasānvitam. ] * ānvikfikam in Bd.P. should be amāksikam ('with no flies in i t ) . ** T h e verse contains misprints. T h e original verse seems to be as in Vā.P.8.90:


Brahmānda Purāna

74

85. Those subjects maintained themselves with t h a t at the beginning of T r e t ā yuga. W i t h t h a t Siddhi they b e c a m e hale, h e a r t y a n d well-nourished. T h e y were free from feverish ailments. 86. Thereafter, on other occasions also, the subjects became overwhelmed by greed thus, once again. T h e y seized the trees a n d took by force the nectar and honey. 87. On account of this misdemeanour on their part brought about by their covetousness, the K a l p a trees (wish-yield­ ing trees) perished here a n d there along with the Lord *(?) 88. W h e n t h a t achievement (Siddhi) was reduced to a very little quantity with the passage of time, they maintained themselves with this. T h e i r Dvandvas (rivalries or m u t u a l opposites) rose up tremendously. 89. T h e dullness, the wind a n d the sunshine were severe. Therefore they were m u c h tormented. Being afflicted by the mutually opposed pairs of feelings and reactions, they bewailed their w o u n d s * * (?) ^ 90-93. (Defective) they h a d been vexed in their minds when formerly they h a d no abodes. T h e y were wandering about as they pleased. After building houses to remedy the (evil effects of) Dvandvas (like heat and c o l d ) , they stayed in the abodes as they pleased as they could secure. ( W h e n they had no abodes) they resorted to difficult passages in m o u n t a i n s and on rivers (?) d r i p p i n g with h o n e y * * * , in plains a n d even in (hilly) regions where water was available. T h e y lived as they pleased and as m u c h as they could enjoy. T h e y began to build those abodes in order to ward off cold (blizzards) and hot ( w i n d s ) . Thereafter, they built hamlets and cities. Tesvtva

jāyate

amāksīkam

tāsārh

gandha-oarna-rasānvitam

mahāvīryam pufake

pufake

madhu

/ jl

T h e h o n e y was e n d o w e d with g o o d flavour, colour a n d taste a n d no

flies * ** ***

in

V ā . P . 8.93b madhunā ' a l o n g with the honey'. V ā . P . 8 . 9 5 cakrur āvarariāni ca 'created shelters and covers.' madhu-dhunvatsu in the text is absurd in the context.

corresponding and

had

it.

verse)

wildernesses*.

appropriately

reads:

marudhaiwasu—'in

Vā.P.8.97 sandy

(a

deserts


75

1.2.7.95-103

94-95. T h e y built villages a n d cities with their due shares, extent a n d dimensions and built other settlements as well, in accordance with their knowledge. After measuring with their own fingers (in the b e g i n n i n g ) , they m a d e thereafter other units 1 also for the sake of measurement. 96-100. (Defective) with A ńgulas (finger-width) as the basis they m a d e the units, Pradeśa, Hasta, Kisku a n d Dhanus. T e n joints of the fingers (Añgulas) constitute what is called Pradeśa. T h e space delimited by the tips of the extended t h u m b a n d index finger is called Pradeśa. T h e same with ( t h e tip of the extended) middle finger is remembered as Tāla. T h e same with ( t h e tip of the extended) ring finger is Gokarna. T h e same with (the tip of the extended) small finger is called Vitasti. It has twelve Añgulas. Twentyone Añgulas make the unit Ratni. Twentyfour Añgulas make one Hasta. T w o Ratnis or fortytwo Añgulas make a Kisku. Four Hastas make one Dhanus o r ( ? ) Danda. T h e same is a pair of arrows (Nālikās). T w o thousand Dhanus make one Gavyūti. This h a d been m a d e by them then. 101. Eight thousand Dhanus m a k e one Yojana as determin­ ed by t h e m . With this Yojana (as the unit of measurement) settlements (i.e. colonies) were m a d e thereafter. 102. Among the four (types of) fortresses, three are n a t u r a l a n d the fourth (type of) fort is artificial. I shall m e n ­ tion its decisive features. 103. It has a thick elevated r a m p a r t (esp. a surrounding wall elevated on a mound of e a r t h ) with cavities ( o r openings). 1. V V . 96-101 give the units of measurements of distance as follows. Ańgula = Finger-breadth. 10 A ń g u l a

=

Pradeśa

12 Ańgulas

=

Vitasti

21 Ańgulas

=

Ratni

24 Ańgulas

=

Hasta

= =

Kiksu D h a n u s or D a n d a (?)

2000 Dhauus

=

Gavyūti

7000 D h a n u s

Yojana

2 Ratnis or 42 Ańgulas 4 Hastas


76

Brahmānda Purāna

It is surrounded with a moat on all sides. It has a beautiful front-door a n d a gynaeceum in which girls are kept. 104. (Defective t e x t ) * T h e moats two Hastas in b r e a d t h are excellent in the case of the K u m ā r ī p u r a . T h e total b r e a d t h of the current of water in ( t h e m o a t ) m a y be eight, nine or ten ( ? ) . 105-106. (I shall m e n t i o n ) 1 the girth and length of ham­ lets, cities, and villages entirely as well as those of the three types of ( n a t u r a l ) forts viz. mountains, waters (i.e. rivers) and waste-lands such as deserts etc., and the artificial forts as well. T h e d i a m e t e r shall be half a Yojana. Its length shall be one a n d one eighth Yojanas. 107. T h e extent of a Pura (city) shall be half of the m a x i m u m l e n g t h ( ? ) . T h e r e must b e a r i v e r ( ? ) flowing to its east or n o r t h . It should be divided into a h y p o t e n u m a n d seg­ ments. It must be laid out in the shape of a spread fan. 108. A city t h a t is long, diamond-shaped or circular is not praiseworthy. A city endowed w i t h the symmetrical parts a n d quadrangles and heaven-like, c o m m e n d a b l e was m a d e by t h e m . 109. T h e Vāstu (site of a building; dwelling place) t h a t is not m o r e t h a n twenty four Hastas is short; t h a t of one h u n d r e d a n d eight (Hastas) is great. In this m a t t e r they praise the middle one a n d the short one which has no (wooden s t r u c t u r e ) . 110. T h e chief settlement should be eight h u n d r e d Kiskus. T h e h a m l e t should be of half the d i a m e t e r of the city. T h e P ā n a * * ( ? Drinking place) shall be above i t ( ? ) . 111. T h e h a m l e t shall be a Yojana ( a b o u t 12 k m ) from the city a n d the village shall be half a Yojana from the h a m l e t . T h e outermost b o u n d a r y shall be two Krośas (1 K r o ś a = 3 k m s ) . T h e b o u n d a r y of a field is four Dhanus. *

T h e corresponding verse in Vā.P.8.110 runs as follows: srotasī samhata-dvāram nikhātam punar eva ca / hastāsfau ca daia iresfhā navāsfau vā'pare raatāh //

Different opinions about the breadth of the m o a t in front of Kumāripura are given here as 2, 8, 9, 10 hastas, the last being the best. 1. **

V V . 105-116 delineate the ancient ideas of town (and village) planning. Vā.P.7.116b

(in the corresponding

verse)

reads

:

Pātiam of the Bd.P. It m e a n s : a grāma should be beyond that'.

grāmam

for


1.2.7.112-120

77

112. T h e pathway along the quarters (i.e. East-west a n d North-south) was m a d e twenty Dhanus wide by t h e m . T h e road in the village was also twenty Dhanus ( w i d e ) . T h e path in the b o u n d a r y was only ten Dhanus ( w i d e ) . 113. T h e glorious royal road was m a d e ten Dhanus wide. T h e movement of (traffic of) men, horses, chariots a n d elephants (shall b e ) w i t h o u t a n y h i n d r a n c e . 114. T h e branch-streets were measured by them (and m a d e ) four D h a n u s (wide). T h e roads joining the high-ways shall be three D h a n u s (wide) and their branches two D h a n u s wide. 115. (Defective text) T h e Jańghāpatha* (? the thighroad) has four Pādas w i d t h ; the passage between rows of houses is three quarters ( w i d e ) . Dhrtimārga** (? p a t h of courage) if m o r e t h a n one sixth. T h e Padiku (Foot-Path ?) is r e m e m b e r e d thus in due order. 116. T h e enclosure lor excrement is a quarter all round. After those places have been m a d e , the houses and dwellings (should be c o n s t r u c t e d ) . 117. T h e y thought over it a g a i n and again about the trees designated as their houses as to how they were before, and b e g a n to build like t h e m . 1 118. T h e branches of trees have gone down. Others have gone this way. Still others have gone u p . In the same way, some have gone obliquely. 119. With their intellect, they have observed carefully how the b r a n c h e s have gone. Apartments were constructed by them in the same way. Hence they (the a p a r t m e n t s ) are re­ m e m b e r e d as Sālūs. 120. T h u s Sāl&s ( a p a r t m e n t s , dwellings) became wellknown from the branches. So also the abodes. Therefore they are r e m e m b e r e d as Śālās. T h a t is remembered as their Sālātva2 (state of being a Ś ā l ā ) . *jañghā-patha is probably a 'misprint' for " g h a n t ā - p a t h a " 'a bell-road' i.e. the chief road through a village or a highway. Pada= 15 fingers' breadth. ** Vrtti-mārga in V ā . P . 8 . 1 2 1 . 1. VV.117-121 refer to construction of buildings. It is interesting to note that the Śāla tree played an important part in ancient ideas of housing. 2. Popular but important etymology of Śālā 'an apartment or dwel­ ling'.


78

Brahmānda Purina

121. Since people are delighted therein (Prasidanti), they are designated as Prāsādas (palaces). Therefore, the abodes, a p a r t m e n t s and palaces are designated as Prāsādas. 1 122. W h e n the wish-yielding K a l p a trees perished along with the h o n e y , ( t h e subjects) a t t a c h e d by the Dvandvas ( m u t u a l opposed pairs of feelings etc.) began to think a b o u t the means of agriculture a n d other occupations for livelihood. 123. T h e subjects created were seen agitated due to ex­ haustion a n d sorrow. Thereafter, the Siddhi a p p e a r e d in front of t h e m in the T r e t ā yuga. 124. Another (type of) rain became the means of achiev­ ing all objects for them. T h e waters of the rain were sweet a n d were as m u c h as they wished for. 125-126. T h u s a ( n e w ) way of life a n d conduct began to function d u r i n g the creation of the second type of r a i n . D u e to the contact of the earth with the small collections of water t h a t g a t h e r e d together on the surface of the earth, the medicinal herbs began to grow. Those medicinal herbs began to p u t forth blossoms, roots a n d fruits. 127. T h e fourteen (types of lands in) villages a n d forests ( b e g a n to flourish) without being ploughed a n d without t h e seeds being sown. T h e trees and the bushes p u t forth flowers and fruits at the p r o p e r seasons. 128. In the T r e t ā yuga, medicinal herbs a n d plants began to a p p e a r themselves on the earth. In the beginning of the T r e t ā yuga, the subjects sustained themselves with those plants a n d herbs. 2 129. Thereafter, due to the inevitability of affairs a n d due to the T r e t ā yuga those subjects b e g a n to have passion a n d covetousness for ever. 130. T h e n , they forcibly seized rivers, fields, m o u n t a i n s , trees, bushes a n d medicinal herbs as m u c h as they could (in accordance with their s t r e n g t h ) .

1.

Etymology of Prāsāda 'a palace'.

2.

VV

128ff show the prevalence of food-gathering e c o n o m y in the

Tretā yuga. T h e evolution of four Varnas is another sociological feature of this Yuga.


1.2.7.131-141

79

131-132. Previously I have already explained to you a b o u t the spiritually enlightened souls in t h e K r t a y u g a . T h e y were b o r n as m e n t a l sons of B r a h m a a n d they h a d come h e r e (to t h e e a r t h ) from t h e J a n a l o k a . T h e y were quiescent lustrous Karmins (devoted to the pursuit of holy rites) a n d ( u n h a p p y a n d dejected). R e t u r n i n g from there (i.e. J a n a l o k a ) , they were b o r n again in the T r e t ā yuga. 133. In the previous births, due to the glory of their auspiciousness (i.e. meritorious acts) as well as sins they were conceived as B r ā h m a n a s , Ksatriyas, Vaiśyas, Śūdras a n d mali­ cious people. 134-135. T h e n ( a m o n g t h e m some b e c a m e ) powerful, truthful in conduct, non-violent, devoid of greed a n d persons who h a d conquered their selves. T h e y used to abide by those t h a t were r e m e m b e r e d * (? Smrti texts ?). T h e y never a c c e p t e d charity. T h e i r .tasks were carried out by those w h o were weaker t h a n they. T h e y (these weaker people) a p p r o a c h e d t h e m speaking to t h e m (?) 136-137. Those others w h o were less brilliant t h a n they, r e m a i n e d serving them. T h u s w h e n they were m u t u a l l y related a n d also resorted to each other, due to t h a t fault the medicinal herbs diminished m u c h t h e n . Like sands they perished on being held in t h e fists. 138-139. T h e n d u e to the power of t h e Yuga, the fourteen (types of people, animals etc.) villages a n d forests began to pluck (and destroy) t h e flowers, fruits and roots (of those trees). T h e n , w h e n they perished the subjects became perplexed. All of t h e m were overwhelmed with h u n g e r ; then they went to the self-born (deity i.e. B r a h m a ) . 140-141. In the beginning of T r e t ā yuga, those subjects desired for some means of livelihood. T h e self-born lord B r a h m a knew their desire. He pondered over this ( s i t u a t i o n ) b y means of his vision t h a t can see everything directly. He u n d e r ­ stood, t h a t the medicinal herbs have been devoured (i.e. d r a w n w i t h i n ) b y the e a r t h . H e m a d e t h e m grow once again. * Vā.P.8.141 reads: sma tesu vai for Bd.P. text here: smrtefu vai. As A* question of memory or smrti text does not arise here Vā.P. reading is better,


80

Brahmānda Purāna

142. After making the Sumeru m o u n t a i n (as) the calf, he milked this earth in the form of a cow t h a t yielded seeds on the surface of the earth in the form of the milk. 1 143. T h e lord m a d e those seeds grow as the medicinal herbs ( a n d other plants) t h a t ended when the fruits became ripe. ( T h a t is, the plants yielded fruits but once a n d then they perished) they are the g r o u p of seventeen. 144-145. T h e following types of seventeen grains a n d pulses constitute the g r o u p of seventeen, viz., Rice, barley, wheat, Bengal-gram, gingelly Priyañgu ( L o n g p e p p e r ) , Udāra (?), Koradufta (a kind of g r a i n eaten by the poor people i.e. Kodrava), Vāmaka (?), the black gram, the green gram, the Masūra (dāl), Nivāra ( r i c e ) , the horse-gram, t h e H a r i k a * (?) a n d the C a r a k a * ( ? ) . 146a. T h u s these were remembered as the species of rural medicinal herbs (Grāmya-Osadhi). 146b-147. Syāmāka (a variety of r i c e ) , Nivāra ( a n o t h e r variety of r i c e ) , Jartila (wild s e s a m u m ) , Gavedhuka ( ?) Kuruvinda (a king of b a r l e y ) , Nenuyava (Bamboo seeds, T ā m ā t ī r k ā t a k a ( ? ) ** etc. are remembered as the fourteen types of medicinal herbs of the villages and forests. 148. All these fourteen varieties (of medicinal herbs a n d plants) peculiar to villages a n d forests grew at the beginning of the first T r e t ā yuga. T h e y are not grown by ploughing. 149. T h e trees, hedges, creepers, winding plants, spread­ ing creepers a n d (various) species of grasses yielded roots, f r u i t s , * * * shoots e t c . u n t o t h e m . T h e y plucked their fruits. 1. milking

This

is the Puranic presentation of the ancient V e d i c concept of

the Virāj c o w recorded in

A V . V I I I . Sūkta 10.

Purāna-writers

used this motif later w i t h g o d Brahma, king Prthu etc. as the milker. Funnily enough M t . P . 10.25 makes Vararuci as the milker and the science of Drama­ turgy

( N ā t y a - V e d a ) as the milk. Here god Brahma milked seeds of medicinal herbs and plants. M e n

gathered food from them for their .livelihood. *

V ā . P . 8 . 1 5 2 a reads : 'ādhakyaś canakai caiva'

which

means:

' T h e pulse cajanus Indicus spreng as well as chick Peas. **

a

misprint

for tathā markatāś ca y e ) . Gf. V ā . P . 8 . 1 5 4 as M W .

gives no word like tāmātirkātaka. markafaka is a species of grain. ***

V ā . P . 8 . 1 4 9 reads: puspaih for pusfāh.


81

1.2.7.150-158

150. Those seeds which were milked out of the e a r t h formerly by the self-born lord, b e g a n to grow as medicinal herbs putting forth iiowerj a n d fruits at the p r o p e r seasons. 151. When the medicinal herbs created before did not grow a n d flourish again, he m a d e m e a n s of livelihood for t h e m by m e a n s of agricultural occupations. 1 152. T h e self-born lord (blessed t h e m ) with the power of working with their own hands a n d achieving great results. Thenceforth, the medicinal herbs became Kr.stapacyas ( p l o u g h e d and grown). 153. After achieving his purpose in the m a t t e r of agri­ cultural occupation, the Prajāpati (lord of the subjects i.e. god B r a h m a established the bounds of decency by means of which they protected one a n o t h e r . 154. A m o n g t h e m some were very powerful a n d they seized the realm. He established t h e m as Ksatriyas a n d it was their d u t y to p r o t e c t others. 155. (Defective) . 2 All those subjects who h a d been created will be worshipping you. 'Tell the t r u t h in accord­ a n c e with the fact'. Those (subjects) who said this were the Brāhmanas. 156-158. Some stood by in the activity of protecting others who were weak. T h e y destroyed Kitas ( w o r m s ) . T h e y were established on the e a r t h . T h e people call them Vaiśyas and cultivators of soil. T h e y were the achievers of liveli­ hood. Those who were engaged in the service (of o t h e r s ) , those who r a n e r r a n d s a n d served others, were devoid of bril­ liance a n d deficient in virility. (Since they were deficient they served o t h e r s ) . He called t h e m Śūdras. L o r d B r a h m a o r d a i n e d and prescribed their respective duties a n d holy rites. 1.

V V . l . ī l f f described

the

transition

from

food-gathering

economy

to the food-growing one by the introduction of Agriculture. T h i s stage crystalized the four-fold classification of the society with their specific duties (vide VV

161-165 2.

below).

V ā . P . 8 . 1 6 2 a gives a better reading: upaiisjhantiye

tin

vaiyāvanto

nirbhayās

tathd.j

' S o long all those w h o worship or respect a n d obey those Ksattriyas, they a r e free from fear'.


82

Brahmānda Purāna

159. Although the establishment of the classification i n t o the four castes h a d been m a d e by him (Lord B r a h m a ) , the subjects, out of delusion, did not conform to those rules. 160. T h e subjects who lived in accordance with the duties of the (different) castes b e c a m e antagonistic to one another. Lord B r a h m a understood everything factually. 161-162. He ordained that meeting out punishments, m a i n t e n a n c e of armies and waging wars should be the means of sustenance for the Ksatriyas. Performance of Yajñas, teaching of the Vedas and acceptance of charitable and monetary gifts—lord Brahma prescribed these as the holy duties and rites for those B r ā h m a n a s . Breeding of cattle, carrying on trading activities and cultivation of the soil—he granted these to the Vaiśyas. 163-165. Again he ordained t h a t arts a n d crafts should be t h e means of livelihood for the Śūdras. To the B r ā h m a n a s , Ksatriyas a n d Vaiśyas he prescribed the common d u t y of performing Yajña and studying the Vedas as well as giving charitable gifts. To the others the common d u t y ordained was performance of their duties for livelihood. After prescribing these duties a n d holy rites, the lord ordained their abodes in the other worlds above : T h e Prājāpatya ( t h a t belonging to Prajāpati or B r a h m a ) world is remembered as the abode of the B r ā h m a n a s who per­ formed their holy rites a n d duties. • 166. T h e world belonging to I n d r a is the abode of Ksatriyas who never flee from the battlefield. T h e abode of the Vaiśyas who sustain themselves by their respective duties is the M ā r u t a world (i.e. the world belonging to the wind g o d ) . 167. T h e a b o d e of the Śūdras who abide by their d u t y of rendering service is the world belonging to the Gandharvas. These are the abodes (after d e a t h ) of the people of the differ­ e n t castes who r e m a i n good a n d m a i n t a i n the conduct of life befitting their respective s t a t i o n in life. 168. W h e n this m o d e of disciplined life of the four castes h a d been well-established, the people of the different castes strictly adhered to t h e duties of their respective castes because they were afraid of p u n i s h m e n t otherwise. T h e n , after the castes h a d been established, he stabilised the stages of life.


83

1.2.7.169-178

169. T h e Lord established as before the following four 1 Āśramas (stages in life) viz. t h e householder, t h e celibate reli­ gious student, t h e forest h e r m i t a n d the ascetic. 170. (Defective text) t h e people of the four castes per­ formed t h e duties of the respective castes. After doing their duties they erected their residences a n d m a i n t a i n e d their stages of life a n d t h e n enjoyed themselves. 171. B r a h m a established those Āśramas. He directed a n d guided those who swerved from these and recounted righteous virtues to t h e m . 172-173. He instructed t h e m in the m e t h o d s of selfrestraint, observances, a n d controls of sense-organs etc. Among t h e four castes, t h e stage of the life of a house­ holder stood at the outset because it was t h e source of origin 1 for the sustenance of the other three Āśramas - (stages of life). I shall m e n t i o n ( t h e duties) in d u e order along with the holy vows a n d observances. 174. T h e following a r e t h e duties of t h e householder in brief : M a r r i a g e , m a i n t e n a n c e of sacrificial fire, hospitability to guests, performance of Yajñas a n d continuation of his race (procreation). 175. T h e duties of the religious student are as follows : He must wear the girdle (of the muñja grass) and hold the staff. He must wear the skin of an antelope. He must sleep on the ground. He must serve his preceptor. He must beg for alms. He must be eager to acquire learning. 176. These a r e the duties of the forest h e r m i t s ; w e a r i n g barks and leaves or skins of antelope (for clothes), m a i n t a i n i n g themselves by means of roots, fruits and medicinal herbs found in the forests, b a t h i n g both at d a w n and dusk and performance of Homa. 177-178. T h e duties of the mendicant (recluse) are as follows : He must beg for alms when the noise of pestles has died down. He must not steal. He m u s t m a i n t a i n cleanliness.

1.

V V . 1 6 9 - 1 8 9 describe the duties of the four Aśram'as or stages in life.

2.

Cf.

tesārh

grhastho yonir

aprajanalvād

iiaresām—Gaut.Dh.S.IlI.3.


84

Brahmānda Purāna

He must not err or be elated. He must refrain from sexual in­ tercourse. He must have mercy on all living beings. He must have forbearance. He must listen to the instructions of t h e preceptor. He must serve the preceptor. He must be truthful. This righteous conduct of ten items (as e n u m e r a t e d above) was laid down by the self-born lord as the d u t y of a recluse. 179. Five of t h e m p e r t a i n to Bhiksus viz. : begging, knowledge (of vedas) and religious vows.* He mentioned their abodes after d e a t h as well as Aśusmi (absence of lus tre) (?) 180. T h e r e are eightyeight t h o u s a n d sages who live in p e r p e t u a l celibacy. T h e place r e m e m b e r e d as their is alone t h e abode of those w h o live with their preceptor (i.e. (Brahmacārins). 181. T h e p l a c e remembered as t h e abode of the seven sages ( t h e great Bear) is (assigned as) t h a t of the forest-dwel­ lers. T h e world of Prajāpati is the abode of house-holders and B r a h m a ' s abode is t h a t of t h e ascetics. 182.** (Defective t e x t ) T h e abode of the Yogins has not been created (?) without conquering them, it does not exist (?) Those abodes of the persons of different stages of life are in­ deed in the abode of B r a h m a . 183. O n l y four paths have been created as Devayānas (paths of t h e D e v a s ) . O n l y four p a t h s are r e m e m b e r e d as Pitryānas ( p a t h s of t h e m a n e s ) . 184. Formerly, in t h e first M a n v a n t a r a (these h a d been created) by B r a h m a who administered the worlds. Ravi (the sun) is r e m e m b e r e d as the e n t r a n c e to those paths t h a t ( a r e known as) Devayānas. T h e moon (Candramas) is mentioned as the e n t r a n c e of Pitryānas. 185-186. T h u s even though t h e castes a n d stages of life h a d been clearly defined, the subjects a d h e r i n g to the duties of t h e different castes did not flourish. T h e n , in the middle of * **

Probably a misprint for amusmin. Vā.P.8.196

(corresponding verse)

reads

as

follows:

yoginām amrtarh sfhānam nānādhīnārh na vidyate / " I m m o r t a l (amrtam) is the abode of Yogins which is not meant for nonYogins.


1.2.7.187-195 T r e t ā yuga he evolved a n o t h e r m e n t a l creation bodies of his own self and similar to himself.

85 from the

187. In t h a t first T r e t ā yuga, when it gradually reached its middle period he began to create m e n t a l progeny other t h a n ( w h a t was before). 188. T h e n t h e same lord created t h e subjects with pre­ d o m i n a t i n g Sattva and Rajas qualities. T h e y h a d the pursuit of virtue ( D h a r m a ) , wealth, love a n d liberation a n d they accom­ plished their professions for livelihood. 189. T h e y were the Devas, the Pitrs, the sages a n d t h e M a n u s ( i . e . h u m a n beings ?) In regard to their characteristics they were in accordance with the respective Yugas. By these, the subjects ( i n the universe) flourished. 190-195. (Defective) F o r m e r l y , I h a d m e n t i o n e d to you a b o u t those people who in the previous K a l p a resorted to J a n a l o k a . As when he m e d i t a t e d u p o n t h e m , all these created beings, a p p r o a c h e d him for the purpose of being born ( a g a i n ) . In t h e course of M a n v a n t a r a s , they were first j u n i o r - m o s t * (?) T h e y were well-renowned by the people of their race (?). T h e y h a d all t h e faculties of cleverness or otherwise, u n i m p a i r e d . T h e y h a d m i n o r calamities due to the defect of the fruits of their own activities. Those who were present consisted of Devas, Asuras, Pitrs Yaksas, G a n d h a r v a s , h u m a n beings, Rāksasas, Piśācas, animals, birds, reptiles, trees, worms of hells etc. For the sake of food of the subjects, he created Vidātm a n s * (knowingsouls) (?)

*

V ā . P . 8 . 2 0 9 reads: ādhlnārtham prajānām ca ātmano vai vinirmame, 'for

the control of the subjects, it is reported that he created h i m s e l f .


86

Brahmānda Purāna CHAPTER EIGHT God Brahma'''s Mental Creation : Gods, sages, manes, and human beings created

Sūta said : 1. Even as he was m e d i t a t i n g , the m e n t a l progeny were born along with those causes a n d effects arising out of his body. 2 - 4 . T h e r e cropped up Ksetrajñas (Individual souls) of the Ksetra (Cosmic b o d y ) of this intelligent person i.e. B r a h m a ) . Thereafter, he was desirous of creating thousands a n d thousands of the four groups of living entities viz. the Devas, the Asuras, the Pitrs and the h u m a n beings. Prajāpati engaged him­ self therein a n d m e d i t a t e d u p o n the creation. While m e d i t a t i n g thus, an effort arising out of his T a m a s constituent was involv­ ed. So, at the outset the Asuras were b o r n as his sons from Prajāpati's loins. 5. Asu is considered by scholars as the vital b r e a t h . Therefore, those who were born of it were Asuras. 1 He discarded t h a t physical body whereby the Asuras h a d been c r e a t e d . 6-7a. T h a t physical body discarded by h i m immediately became N i g h t . Since t h a t physical body h a d the T a m a s ele­ m e n t p r e d o m i n a n t , the night too consisting of three Tāmas (watches of night of the d u r a t i o n of three hours e a c h ) became Tamobahulā ( o n e in which darkness prevails). Therefore at night the subjects enveloped bv darkness.

(people)

a r e themselves

7b-9. After creating the Asuras, he adopted a n o t h e r body t h a t was unmanifest, with the Sattva element predomi­ n a n t within it. T h e n he engaged himself with it. As the lord joined himself to it, he felt very h a p p y . Thereafter from his shining face the D e v a t ā s (gods a n d goddesses) were born. Since they were b o r n of the refulgent face (Divyatah) they are glorified as Devas. (1)

A n o t e w o r t h y derivation of asura as contrasted with the usual a +• sura.


1.2.8.10-20

87 1

10. T h e root \/"Div" is used in the sense of " t o p l a y " . Therefore, the Devas were b o r n of his divine (lit. " s h i n i n g " ) body (and called Devatās). body.

11. After creating the Devas, he discarded t h a t divine T h a t physical body discarded b y him b e c a m e " d a y " .

12. Therefore, people worship the Devas with holy rites performed d u r i n g the d a y t i m e . After creating t h e Devas, he a d o p t e d a n o t h e r body. 13-14. He adopted a n o t h e r body t h a t was solely consti­ tuted by the Sattva element a n d engaged himself therein. T h e lord m e d i t a t e d u p o n those sons considering t h e m like father (of fatherly n a t u r e ) . T h e Pitrs were born of t h a t body in the j u n c t u r e of night and d a y ; therefore those Pitrs are Devas. T h a t state of being Pitrs is declared a b o u t them. 15. He discarded t h a t body whereby the Pitrs were created. T h e b o d y t h a t had been discarded by h i m forthwith b e c a m e the twilight. 16. Hence, the daytime is considered as belonging to t h e Devas a n d t h e night is remembered as belonging to the Asuras. T h e body that belongs to the Pitrs a n d t h a t is in between those two is the most i m p o r t a n t . 17. H e n c e the Devas, the Asuras, the sages a n d the h u ­ m a n beings, while practising Yoga, worship t h a t body w h i c h is in between d a w n a n d m o r n i n g (day-break). 18. H e n c e , B r ā h m a n a s perform sandhyā at the junction of the night a n d day. Thereafter, B r a h m a engaged himself in a n o t h e r body of his. 19. T h a t body which the lord created m e n t a l l y was solely constituted by t h e Rajas element. T h e y (the progeny so created) are his sons through the mind. Since they were begot­ ten (Prajananāt), they became Prajās (subjects). 20. Since, he m e d i t a t e d (before creation) (Mananāt), they are called Manusyas ( M e n ) ; they became wellknown as Prajās because they were procreated. After creating the subjects again, he discarded his own body. 1.

Correct etymology — d i v — m e a n s both 'to play' and 'to shine'.


88

Brahmānda Purāna

21. That body discarded by him became the moonlight immediately. Hence, the subjects become delighted when the moonlight comes out. 22. Thus these physical bodies discarded by that noblesouled person immediately became night, day, twilight and moonlight. 1 23. The moonlight, the twilight, and the day these three are constituted solely of the Sattva element. The night is cons­ tituted of Tamas only. Hence that is Niyāmika* (that which checks, restrains and restricts). 24. So, the Devas were created by means of the shining divine body with pleasure and sportiveness through the face (mouth). Since their birth was during the day time, they are powerful during the day time. 25. Since the lord created the Asuras at night from his loins through the vital breaths, and as they were born during the night, they are invincible during the night. 26-28a. These following, viz.: the moonlight, the night, the day and the twilight—these alone become the causes (of origin) of all future Devas, Manes, human beings along with the Asuras in all the Manvantaras that had passed by and that have not yet come. Since these four spread and shine there, the water is called Ambhas. The root y/bhk is used in the sense of spreading and shining. 2

1. V V . 22-27 summarise the four main

creations

from god Brahma's

body and their other features as follows: *

He e m e n d e d as triyāmikā 'consisting of three Y ā m a s ' as in verse 6

above, Vā.P.9.22 (an identical verse) also reads triyāmikā. Creation

Born from Brahma's

When discarded His Body transformed into

part of the body l.

Asuras

Loins & vital

Night

Prevailing gunas. Tamas

breath ii.

Devas

Shining face

iii.

Pitrs.

Mind

iv.

Human

mind

Day juncture of day and

Predominant Sattva. Pure Sattva.

night moonlight (but d a w n in other Purānas)

beings. 2.

Popular derivation

of ambhas.

Rajas,


89

1.2.8.28b-37

28b-29a. After creating the waters, the lord created the Devas, the D ā n a v a s , the h u m a n beings, the Pitrs and various kinds of other subjects. 29b-30. T h e lord discarded ( t h a t body) t h e moonlight and a t t a i n e d a n o t h e r physical body p r e d o m i n e n t l y constituted of Rajas a n d T a m a s . Thereafter, he engaged himself therein (he united himself to i t . ) . Therefore, he created in darkness tiiose who were overwhelmed by hunger. 31-34. Those created beings, overwhelmed by hunger, a t t e m p t e d to seize the waters. Those a m o n g t h e m who s a i d — " w e shall protect these w a t e r s " , are r e m e m b e r e d as Rāksasas. Those night-walkers (demons) who felt hunger with­ in themselves a n d who said " L e t us destroy t h e waters, let us be delighted in our m u t u a l c o m p a n y " , b e c a m e Yaksas a n d G u h y a k a s of ruthless action d u e to t h a t work. T h e root -\/raksis considered to have the m e a n i n g " t o p r o t e c t . " T h e r o o t \/"ksi" has the m e a n i n g " t o d e s t r o y " . Since they protected (Rakfanāt) they were called Rāksasas. Since they destroyed(KsapanSt), they are called Yaksas. 1 35-36. On seeing t h e m (the ruthless Yaksas), the intel­ ligent self-possessed lord became displeased. D u e to this dis­ pleasure, his hairs b e c a m e shivered. Those shivered hairs moved up a n d ascended again a n d again. Those hairs t h a t dropped off from the h e a d moved a n d crawled u p . T h e y are considered Vyāla, because they were (originally) Bālas or Vālas (hairs). Since they drooped off (Hinatvāt) they are remembered A his serpents) . 2 37. T h e y are P a n n a g a s 3 because they moved a n d wrig­ gled. T h e state of being Sarpas is d u e to t h e fact t h a t they crawled. T h e i r a b o d e of repose is in the e a r t h u n d e r the sun, the m o o n and the clouds*. 1.

Puranic etymology of rāksasa and Taksa.

2.

Another

derivation

of

Vyāla—vāla

and

ahi—hi—generally

ahi

is

derived as follows : a—hart—in sa ca dit āńo hrasvaśca—Apte Sk. H i n d i K o s a P.134. 3.

V V . 37-41 describe the creation of various tribes of demi-gods and

gives popular etymologies *

of Piiāca

and

Gandharva.

T h e text sūryācandramasau ghanāh is obscure. V ā . P .

-verse reads, .sūryācandramasoradhah

(in an identical

'below the Sun and the m o o n ! '


90

Brahmānda Purāna

38. T h e terrible fiery foetus born of his (Brahma's) anger entered in the form of poison in those serpents who were born along with them. 39. After creating t h e serpents out of his anger a set of terrible beings whose diet was flesh a n d w h o were furious by n a t u r e were created. T h e y h a d the tawny colour. 40. Since they h a d been born (Bhūtatvit), they are remem­ bered as Bhūtas; and as they ate flesh [Piśitāśanāt), they were called Piśācas. Even as he ( B r a h m a ) was singing words, the G a n d h a r v a s were born as his sons. 4 1 . T h e root Dhay is recited by poets in the sense of 'drinking'. Since they were born drinking the (musical) words, they a r e r e m e m b e r e d as G a n d h a r v a s . 42. After creating these eight divine beings, he created the Cchandas (Prosody, Vedas) ' as he pleased (Cchandatah). He created t h e birds t h r o u g h his age (? Vayasā). 43. After creating the birds, he created the groups of animals. He created goats out of his m o u t h a n d the sheep out of his chest. 44-45. B r a h m a created t h e cows from his belly a n d the horses, donkeys, Gavayas (a species of o x ) , deer, camels, boars a n d dogs along with the elephants from his sides as well as feet. O t h e r species of animals too were created. T h e medicinal herbs (and plants a n d creepers) with fruits a n d roots were born out of his hairs. 46. Formerly, at the beginning of this K a l p a , at the advent of t h e T r e t ā yuga, he created the five types of medi­ cinal herbs a n d t h e n engaged himself in the sacrifices. 47-48. T h e cow, the goat, t h e m a n , 1 t h e sheep, the horse, t h e m u l e a n d the donkey—these are remembered as seven r u r a l (Grāmya) domesticated animals. T h e r e are other seven forest animals, the beasts of prey, t h e tigers, the elephants, t h e monkey, the birds as t h e fifth of t h e set, t h e a q u a t i c animals as t h e sixth ones a n d t h e reptiles as the seventh ones. 49. T h e buffaloes, the Gavaya oxen, a n d t h e camels, the cloven-footed animals, the Sarabha ( t h e eight-footed fabulous 1.

Strangely enough the Purāna includes the h u m a n species a m o n g

domesticated

animals.


91

1.2.8.50-58

a n i m a l ) , the elephant, with monkey as the seventh of this set, are t h e forest animals. 50. T h r o u g h his first face ( m o u t h ) , he created t h e 1 2 following, viz : the Gāyatrī, the Rk, the Trivrtstoma a n d 3 Rathantara a n d Agnistoma a m o n g the Yajñas. 5 1 . T h r o u g h his right-hand (southern) face ( m o u t h ) , he created the Yajurveda hymns, the T r a i s t u b h a metre, the fifteenth Stoma (hymn) and the Brhatsāman hymn. 52. T h r o u g h his b a c k w a r d (western) face ( m o u t h ) , he created t h e S ā m a n hymns, the J a g a t ī m e t r e , the seventeenth Stoma ( h y m n ) , the V a i r ū p y a a n d A t i r ā t r a (part of J y o t i s t o m a ) sacrifices. 53. T h r o u g h his fourth face ( m o u t h ) , he created t h e twentyfirst (stoma i.e. h y m n ) . T h e Atharva-Veda, the Aploryāma* a n d the A n u s t u b h metre a l o n g w i t h Vairāja. 54. It is wellknown that after creating the great cloud wellknown as Parjanya, the holy lord created lightning, t h u n d e r ­ clouds a n d the red-coloured rainbows. 55. He created the Rk, Yajus and S ā m a n M a n t r a s for the accomplishment of Yajñas. T h e living beings both high a n d low were b o r n of the limbs of Brahma. 56-58. T h e Prajāpati ( L o r d of the subjects) who was creating at the outset the fourfold set viz.: t h e Devas, t h e sages, the Pitrs a n d the h u m a n beings, created the living beings both mobile a n d immobile. After creating Yaksas, the Piśācas, the G a n d h a r v a s , the Apsaras, the h u m a n beings, the K i n n a r a s , the Rāksasas, the birds, the animals, the deer a n d t h e serpents, he created the Ayyayas (changeless ones) and Vyayas

1.

V V . 50-53 give the creation of V e d i c literature, V e d i c metres a n d

special sacrifices from the mouths or faces of Brahma. 2.

Trivrtstoma—A three-fold stoma

(in w h i c h

v e r s e s o f e a c h T r c a o f R v . I X . i l are sung and lasdy the 3rd 3.

Rathantara:

RV.VII.32.22-23 4.

at

together,

first,

then

the

the three 2nd

1st

verses

verses). the verses

abhi

tvā

Śwa

to

be sung according to Sāma-music are

e t c . = S.V.

II.1.1.11.

Āptoryāma is a S o m a sacrifice—an amplification of Atirātra

sacrifice.

According to T ā n d y a B r . X X 3.4-5, it is so called as its performance secures whatever one desires.


92

Brahmānda Purāna

( t h e changeables) beings.

as well as

the

mobile a n d the immobile

59-60. Even w h e n created again a n d again, these beings a d o p t e d only the K a r m a n s t h a t h a d been committed before. 1 T h e previous natures a n d features such as violence a n d non­ violence, softness of h e a r t a n d ruthlessness, virtue a n d evil as well as t r u t h a n d falsehood—all these were a d o p t e d by them ( i n their later c r e a t i o n s ) . Hence, they are liked by them. 6 1 . It was B r a h m a , the creator himself, who ordained t h e diversity in the great elements a n d their allotment to different physical bodies afflicted by the sense-organs (Indrŕyārtesu) *. 62. Some m e n say that t h e m a n l y endeavour (is the sole cause of a c h i e v e m e n t ) . Some m e n say t h a t it is the Karman (previous a c t i o n s ) . O t h e r B r ā h m a n a s say t h a t it is the destiny. TheBhūtacintakas (those w h o think about the elements—perhaps t h e Cārvākas) say t h a t it is n a t u r e and latent instinct. 63. (But real thinkers) know t h a t t h e r e is no difference or superiority a m o n g t h e m a n l y endeavour, previous action and the destiny. T h e same is understood t h r o u g h the n a t u r e of the o u t c o m e of fruits (of actions etc.) 64. ( S o m e s a y ) 2 this is thus a n d not t h u s — t h i s is b o t h nor is it both. But persons abiding by Sattva a n d having impartial vision say ( t h a t t h e Universe) is the object of its own activity. 65. It is only through the words of the Vedas that the great lord created at t h e outset, the different forms a n d features of t h e living beings a n d the development of the created ones.

1.

As n o t e d a b o v e this Purāna emphasizes the law of Karman. T h e

e n d of a K a l p a does not destroy the K a r m a of an individual. *

If

the

reading Indriyārthesu is adopted the m e a n i n g is " a n d their

allotment to different physical bodies a n d the objects of the various sense organs." 2. in

Apparently

the

view

SāmaMa-phala-sulta—Digha

(aniścitatāvāda)

Nikāyo

p.

51

of

Sañjaya Belatthi Putta

(Nalanda

Ed.):

when

asked

about the existence of the other world he states: enarh ti pi me no, tathā li pi me no, aññathā ti pi me no, no ti pi me no, no no ti pi me no. But I think the Purāna probably voices the view of Syādvāda.


93

1.2.8.66—9.1-6

66. T h e names pertaining to the sages a n d the visions belonging to the Devas—these, the u n b o r n lord assigns to those who are b o r n at the end of the night.

CHAPTER NINE The Progeny of Rudra : Birth of Bhrgu and others Sūta said : 1. By means of his mind, the lord then created five Kartrs (doers or agents of c r e a t i o n ) , viz.: R u d r a . D h a r m a , M a n a s ( m i n d ) , R u c i a n d Ākrti. 2. All these are mighty-armed a n d they a r e the causes of the sustenance of the subjects. W h e n the medicinal h e r b s decline again and again, it is R u d r a who sustains t h e m a n d revives them. 3-4. By those who seek benefits, the Lord was well wor­ shipped with whatever fruits a n d medicinal herbs were available (to t h e m ) . He (that God) is called T r y a m b a k a 1 as in times of (impending?) extinction of medicinal herbs etc., sacrifice is offered to h i m by sages with three K ā p ā l a s (plates or potsherds c o n t a i n i n g ) of cakes sacred to h i m ( R u d r a ) . 5-6. It has already been m e n t i o n e d by me t h a t the three Vedic metres, Gāyatrī, T r i s t u p and J a g a t I are t h e sources of origin of the Ambakas (i.e. Kapālas) along with the Vanaspati (i.e. the medicinal h e r b s ) . These three metres join together a n d assume unity (i.e. when they a r e used in M a n t r a s at the t i m e of the consecration of the Purodāśa offerings). T h a t Purodāia is infused with the virility of each of these m a n t r a s . H e n c e the Purodāśa is remembered as Trikapāla ( h a v i n g three vessels to hold i t ) . Therefore the Purodāśa is Tryambaka as well. H e n c e 1.

T r y a m b a k a means 'one having three eyes' and is an epithet of Śiva.

H e r e it is identified with Purodāśa.


Brahmānda Purāna

•94

the lord ( t o w h o m this Purodāśa is offered) is r e m e m b e r e d as Tryambaka. 7. D h a r m a sustains all the subjects. Manas is remembered as t h a t which caused knowledge. Ākrti is the form of splendid beauty. Ruci is remembered as one who inculcates Śraddhā (faith). 8-9. T h u s these protectors of the subjects are the causes of the sustenance of the subjects. Even as he continued the creative activity for the sake of the multiplication of the subjects, those created subjects did not increase at all by any means. Therefore, he racked his intellect that should arrive at a decisive conclusion. 10. T h e n he saw the T a m a s element moving within himself. T h a n k s to its own action, it h a d a b a n d o n e d Rajas and Sattva a n d was existing by itself. 11. T h e r e u p o n , d u e to t h a t sorrow, the lord of the uni­ verse felt grieved. He pushed out the T a m a s element and after­ w a r d s covered it with Rajas. 12. T h a t T a m a s pushed out by him gave b i r t h to a pair. On account of his unrighteous conduct, Himsā (Violence) and Śoka (grief) were born. 13. W h e n t h a t pair in the form of Varana (covering u p ) , was born, the lord b e c a m e delighted. He resorted to this. 14. F r o m a half of the body of the lord who was delighted within himself thus, a w o m a n conducive to great welfare, and 1 c h a r m i n g a n d fascinating to all living beings, c a m e o u t . 15. T h a t beautiful looking lady was indeed created from Prakrti by him ( a s he was) desirous (of p r o g e n y ) and was called Ś a t a r ū p ā . And she was again a n d again called so. 16. It was then t h a t the subjects were born of that noblesouled being in the middle of T r e t ā yuga as has already been m e n t i o n e d by me to you in section-I Prakriyāpāda. 17. W h e n those subjects created by t h a t intelligent selfpossessed being did not increase in n u m b e r , he created other jxiental sons similar to himself. 1.

Cf.

Manu

1.32.


1.2.9.18-29

95 1

18-19. He created these nine m e n t a l sons viz. : Bhrgu, Ańgiras, M a r l c i , Pulastya, P u l a h a , K r a t u , Daksa, Atri a n d Vasistha. In the P u r ā n a , these are decisively called the " n i n e B r a h m ā s " (because they were like) B r a h m a (the c r e a t o r ) u n t o all beings of controlled souls, having the A t m a n as their source of origin. 20. T h e n B r a h m a created again D h a r m a who was •delightful a n d pleasant u n t o all living beings; as well as the Prajāpati Ruci. These two were the eldest of all ancient ones. 21. He created from his intellect, D h a r m a who was delightful a n d pleasant u n t o all living beings. He who is n a m e d Ruci was b o r n of the m i n d of (the lord of) unmanifest birth. 22-24. Sage Bhrgu was born of the h e a r t of the lord whose source of origin was water. B r a h m a created Daksa from his vital b r e a t h and M a r l c i from his eyes. He created R u d r a (also known as) Nīlalohita in the form of Abhimāna (prestige, h o n o u r ) . He created ańgiras from his h e a d a n d Atri from the ears. From his Udāna (?) vital breath (prāna) he created Pulastya and Pulaha from Vyūna. Vasistha was born of Samāna and he created K r a t u from Apāna. 25. T h u s these twelve are r e m e m b e r e d as the sons of B r a h m a at the beginning (of c r e a t i o n ) of subjects. D h a r m a was the first-born a m o n g those Devatās. 26. Bhrgu a n d others who h a d been created are remem­ bered as Brahmarsis (Brahminical sages). T h e y are the ancient house-holders a n d D h a r m a (virtue) was initially established by them. 27-28a. In the K a l p a , these twelve give b i r t h to subjects a g a i n and again. T h e i r twelve races a r c divine a n d equipped with Divine qualities. T h e y perform holy rites and have (i.e. procreate) progeny. T h e y are a d o r n e d ( h o n o u r e d ) by great sages. 28b-29. W h e n the p r o g e n y created b y D h a r m a a n d other g r e a t sages ( w h o themselves) h a d been created ( b y h i m ) d i d not multiply, t h e intelligent a n d self-possessed lord b e c a m e slightly enveloped by T a m a s a n d afflicted by grief.

1.

Cf. M a n u 1.35 also VP.I.8.4-6.


96

Brahmānda Purāna:

30. J u s t as B r a h m a was enveloped by T a m a s elements, so also in the case of his sons too a n o t h e r T a m a s element issued forth. 31-32. A d h a r m a is in the n a t u r e of r e t u r n flow (?) a n d H i m s ā (Violence) is inauspicious by n a t u r e . T h e n when he was obstructed a n d the n a t u r e of the covering was manifest, B r a h m a discarded his own shining physical body. After dividing his own body into two, he b e c a m e a m a n by one half. 33. By ( a n o t h e r ) half he b e c a m e a w o m a n a n d she was Ś a t a r ū p ā . She was the P r a k r t i , 1 the m o t h e r of all living beings ( a n d manifested thus) because the lord was creating out of desire. 34-36. W i t h her grandeur, she pervaded the firmament and the earth and r e m a i n e d steady. T h a t was the former body of B r a h m a who stayed enveloping the firmament. T h e half t h a t was created as a w o m a n b e c a m e Ś a t a r ū p ā . T h a t divine l a d y performed a very difficult p e n a n c e for a h u n d r e d thousand years and obtained Purusa of brilliant fame as her husband. Indeed, he is called M a n u , the Purusa, the earlier son of t h e self-born lord. 37-38a. Seventyone sets of four Yugas constitute what is called his M a n v a n t a r a (reign of a M a n u ) . After obtaining as his wife, Ś a t a r ū p ā who was not b o r n of a n y w o m b , the P u r u s a sported with her. H e n c e it is called Rati (sexual d a l l i a n c e ) . 38b-40. T h e first union took place in the beginning of the K a l p a . B r a h m a created V i r ā t (the immense Being). T h a t V i r ā t became the P u r u s a . H e , accompanied by Ś a t a r ū p ā , is remembered a s Vairāja, M a n u a n d S a m r ā t ( E m p e r o r ) . T h a t Purusa, M a n u , the Vairāja c r e a t e d subjects (begot p r o g e n y ) . F r o m Vairāja, the P u r u s a , S a t a r ū p ā gave b i r t h to two heroic ' sons. 4 1 . T h e y were Priyavrata a n d U t t ā n a p ā d a . These two sons were the most excellent sons t h a t persons possessing sons could expect. (She gave b i r t h to) two d a u g h t e r s also of great fortune. F r o m t h e m these subjects were b o r n . 1.

T h e Sāńkhya pair of Prakrti and Purusa are represented

Śatarupā and M a n u . used

as synonyms.

T h e terms Vairāja, Purusa, M a n u

here as

(and Samrāt) are


1.2.9.42-55

97

42. T h e y were the divine lady n a m e d Akūti a n d auspi­ cious lady Prasūti. Both of t h e m were auspicious. T h e lordly son of the self-born lord gave Prasūti to Daksa. 43. He gave Ākūti to Ruci, the Prajāpati. An auspicious pair was b o r n of Akūti as the progeny of Ruci, the mental son (of B r a h m a ) . 44. T h e y were the twins Yajña and Daksinā. Twelve sons were born to Yajña and D a k s i n ā . 45. T h e y were the Devas n a m e d Yāmas in the Svāyam­ b h u v a M a n v a n t a r a . They were the sons of twins, viz : Yajña 1 and Daksinā. H e n c e they are remembered as Yāmas. 46. ( ?) T w o groups of B r a h m a are remembered viz : Ajitas a n d Śukras. T h e Y ā m a s who have the appellation Divaukas (heaven-dwellers) c i r c u m a m b u l a t e d the former. 47. Lord Daksa begot of Prasūti, the d a u g h t e r of Svāyambhuva Manu, twenty-four daughters who b e c a m e mothers of the world. 48-49a. All of t h e m were highly fortunate. All of them were lotus-eyed. All of them were wives of Yogins a n d all of them were Yogic mothers. All of t h e m were expounders of B r a h m a n a n d all of t h e m were the mothers of the universe. 49b-50. Lord D h a r m a accepted ( t h e following) t h i r t e e n daughters of D a k s a as his wives, viz : Ś r a d d h ā , Laksmī, Dhi ti, T u s t i , Pusti, M e d h ā , Kriyā, Buddhi, Lajjā, Vasu, Ś ā n t i , Siddhi, a n d Kīrti as the t h i r t e e n t h . 51-52. These door-ways of his (creative activity) w e r e ordained by the self-born lord. T h e others t h a t remained were the eleven younger daughters of beautiful eyes, viz : Satī,. K h y ā t i , S a m b h ū t i , Smrti, Prīti, K s a m ā , S a n n a t i , Anasūyā. Orjā, Svāhā a n d S v a d h ā . 53-54. O t h e r great sages accepted t h e m (as wives). T h e y were R u d r a , Bhrgu, Marīci, Añgiras, P u l a h a , K r a t u , Pulastya, Atri, Vasistha, Agni and Pitrs. He gave (in m a r r i a g e ) Sa ī to Bhava a n d K h y ā t i to Bhrgu. 55. To Marīci, he gave Sambhūti, a n d Smrti to Ańgiras.. To Pulastya he gave Prīti a n d K s a m ā to Pulaha. 1.

Derivation of Y ā m a , the gods of the S v ā y a m b h u v a M a n v a n t a r a .


98

Brahmānda Purāna

56. To K r a t u , he gave Sannati a n d the ( d a u g h t e r ) n a m e d Anasūyā to Atri. He gave Ūrjā to Vasistha a n d Svāhā to Agni (the fire-god). 57-58. He gave Svadhā to the Pitrs. Listen from me their children. All these were highly fortunate ladies; their subjects (children) obediently followed them in all M a n v a n t a r a s till the time of ultimate annihilation (of the w o r l d ) . Śraddhā gave birth to K a m a and D a r p a (arrogance) is remembered as the son of Laksmī. 1 59. N i y a m a ( R e s t r a i n t ) was the son of D h r t i ( C o u r a g e ) . Santosa ( C o n t e n t m e n t ) is mentioned as the son of T u s t i (Satisfaction). L ā b h a (gain) was the son ofPusti ( N o u r i s h m e n t ) a n d Śruta (Learning) was the son of M e d h ā ( I n t e l l e c t ) . 60. D a m a (Restraint of sense-organs) a n d Ś a m a (Res­ t r a i n t of the m i n d ) a r e mentioned as the sons of Kriyā (Activity). Bodha (Understanding) a n d A p r a m ā d a (Absence of Errors) were the sons of Buddhi (Intellect). 6 1 . Vinaya (Modesty) was the son of Lajjā (Bashfulness). Vyavasāya (Enterprise) was the son of Vasu. K s e m a (Welfare) was the son of Sānti ( T r a n q u i l i t y ) . Sukha( Happiness) was b o r n of Siddhi ( A c h i e v e m e n t ) . 62. Yaśas ( F a m e ) was the son of Kīrti (Renown) — T h e s e were the sons of D h a r m a . Kama's (Love's) son H a r s a (Delight) was b o r n of the noble lady Siddhi (Achievement). 63. T h r o u g h A d h a r m a (Evil), H i m s ā (Violence) gave b i r t h to the two children Nikrti (Dishonesty, Wickedness) a n d Anrta ( F a l s e h o o d ) . 64. T w o twins were born of Nikrti a n d A n r t a viz Bhaya ( F e a r ) , N a r a k a ( H e l l ) , M ā y ā (Illusion) a n d V e d a n ā ( P a i n ) . 65. T h r o u g h M a y a , M ā y ā gave birth to M r t y u ( D e a t h ) t h a t takes away all living beings. T h e n D u h k h a (Misery) was b o r n of V e d a n ā t h r o u g h R a u r a v a ( H e l l ) . 66. Vyādhi (Sickness) gave birth to J a r ā ( O l d a g e ) , Śoka (Grief), K r o d h a ( A n g e r ) and Asūyā (Jealousy) through M r t y u . All these a r e remembered as characteristics of A d h a r m a (Evil) with misery as the ultimate end. 1. V V . 58-67 personify virtues and vices and state O u t of these V V . 6 3 - 6 8 describe the T ā m a s a creation.

their

parentage.


1.2.9.67-80 67.

99 T h e i r wife, son,—everyone is r e m e m b e r e d as d e a t h ­

less. T h u s this T ā m a s a creation took birth the controlling one.

with A d h a r m a as

68. Nīlalohita was c o m m a n d e d by B r a h m a , "Beget p r o g e n y " . He contemplated on his wife Satī a n d created sons. 1 69. T h e y were neither superior to him nor inferior. T h e y were his m e n t a l sons on a p a r with himself. H e , created thousands a n d thousands of such childern wearing elephant hides. 70-80. All of t h e m h a d these characteristics and features: All of t h e m were on a p a r with himself in form, brilliance, strength a n d learning. T h e y were tawny-coloured. T h e y h a d quivers a n d m a t t e d hair. T h e y were dark blue-red in com­ plexion. T h e y were devoid of tufts. T h e y h a d no hairs. T h e y were killers w i t h eyes ( b y casting a look). T h e y h a d K a p ā l a s (skills) with them. T h e y h a d huge beautiful forms and_J>ideous cosmic forms. Some occupied chariots a n d wore coats of mail. T h e y were defenders wearing a r m o u r s . T h e y h a d h u n d r e d s and thousands of arms. T h e y were able to go through t h e firmament, earth and heaven; they h a d big heads, eight fangs, two tongues a n d three eyes. (Some were) eaters of rice, (some) eaters of flesh, ( s o m e ) drinkers of ghee a n d (some of) Soma juice. (Some) h a d penises of great size; fierce bodies a n d blue necks. Some h a d fierce fury. T h e y h a d quivers a n d armours, bows, swords a n d leather shields. Some were s e a t e d ; some were r u n n i n g . Some yawning a n d some occupying (seats). Some were reciting (the V e d a s ) , some performing J a p a s , Yogic practices and meditations. Some were blazing. Some were showering, some shining a n d some smoking. Some were enlightened. Some were wakeful, alert a n d enlightened. Some h a d the p r o p e r t y of B r a h m a ( ? ) . Some h a d the vision of B r a h m a n . T h e y h a d blue necks a n d thousand eyes. All of t h e m were walking over the e a r t h . T h e y were invisible to all living beings. T h e y had great Yogic power, virility a n d splendour. T h e y were shouting a n d r u n n i n g . O n seeing R u d r a creating 1.

V V . 68-80 describe the Raudri Srsti (creation by R u d r a ) and he

was asked by Brahma to stop creation as he was procreating immortal progeny and R u d r a complied.

• t\

I


Brahmānda Purāna

100

these excellent Devas with these qualities a n d features, in thousands even before the expiry of the period of a Y ā m a , B r a h m a told h i m — " D o not create subjects like these. T h e subjects should not be created on a p a r w i t h oneself or superior to oneself; welfare u n t o you. Create other subjects vulnerable to d e a t h . Subjects devoid of d e a t h do not begin to perform holy rites". 81. T h u s addressed, he ( R u d r a ) said to h i m (Brahma) : " I will n o t create progeny subject t o d e a t h a n d old age. Pro­ sperity u n t o you. I am standing by (i.e. cease to p r o c r e a t e ) ; you please create, O lord. 82. These hideous a n d bluish-red coloured subjects who h a d been created by me in thousands a n d thousands, have come o u t of my own self. 83. These Devas will be known by the n a m e of R u d r a s . T h e y a r e highly powerful. Those R u d r ā n ī s a r e well-known over the earth a n d firmament. 84. E n u m e r a t e d in the (Vedic text) Śatarudra, they will become worthy of Yajñas. All of t h e m will p a r t a k e of t h e Yajñas along with the groups of Devas. 85. Till the end of the Yuga, they will remain, on being worshipped along with those Devas b o r n of Cchandas (Vedas or—born as they are pleased) in the M a n v a n t a r a s . 86. On being told thus by M a h ā d e v a , t h a t lord B r a h m a , the delighted lord of subjects replied to the terrible R u d r a . 87. "O lord welfare u n t o you. Let it be as spoken by you." W h e n it was p e r m i t t e d by B r a h m a , everything h a p p e n e d t h a t way. 88. Thenceforth, the lord S t h ā n u did n o t beget subjects. He r e m a i n e d celibate till the u l t i m a t e annihilation. 89-9la. He is r e m e m b e r e d by learned m a n as S t h ā n u 1 because it was said by h i m t h u s — " 1 am standing b y " . All these qualities are present in Ś a ń k a r a — v i z : knowledge, penance, truthfulness, glorious prosperity, virtue, d e t a c h m e n t a n d com­ prehension of the self. He excels all the Devas a n d sages along

1.

Derivation of Sthānu.


101

1.2.9.91b-92—10.1-4

w i t h the Asuras, by m e a n s of his splendour. H e n c e the lord is 1 remembered as Mahādeva (Great god). 91b-92. He excels the Devas t h r o u g h his glorious pros­ perity, the great Asuras t h r o u g h his power, all the sages t h r o u g h his knowledge a n d all the living beings t h r o u g h Yoga. It is thus t h a t M a h ā d e v a is bowed to by all t h e Devas. After creating the subjects devoid of enterprise, he refrained from creation.

CHAPTER TEN Magnificence of God Śiva : Birth of Nilalohita : His eight Names and Forms* The Sage said.: 1. T h e manifestation in this K a l p a of the noble-souled great lord R u d r a along w i t h the Sādhaka (spiritual aspirants) has n o t b e e n n a r r a t e d by you. Sūta replied : 2. T h e origin of the p r i m o r d i a l creation has been succinct­ ly m e n t i o n e d by m e . I shall now n a r r a t e in detail the names a l o n g w i t h the physical bodies. 3. M a h ā d e v a begot of his wives m a n y sons in the o t h e r K a l p a s t h a t have passed by. Listen to those ( p r o c r e a t e d ) in this K a l p a . 4. In t h e beginning of the K a l p a , the lord c o n t e m p l a t e d on a son on a p a r w i t h himself. Thereafter, the child Nilalohita a p p e a r e d on his lap. 1.

Derivation

of Mahādeva.

•This chapter deals w i t h the eight forms of g o d Ś i v a — a popular concep­ tion in Purānas a n d classical literature. It is an amplification of a similar concept in Śatapatha Brāhmana as n o t e d below. This chapter is textually very close

to

Vā.p.Ch.27.


102

Brahmanda Purina

5-6. He cried loudly in a terrible m a n n e r (voice). He a p p e a r e d as t h o u g h he would b u r n by means of his brillance. 1 On seeing t h e child N i l a l o h i t a crying suddenly, B r a h m a spoke to h i m — " W h y do you cry, O child ?" He r e p l i e d — " G i v e me at the outset a n a m e , O G r a n d f a t h e r . " 2 7 . " O lord, you are n a m e d R u d r a " . O n being told thus he cried again. " W h y do you cry, O c h i l d ? " asked B r a h m a to him. 8. " G i v e me a second n a m e " , said he to t h e self-born L o r d . " Y o u are Bhava by n a m e , O L o r d " . On being told thus he cried again. 9. " W h y do you c r y ? " , enquired B r a h m a of t h e crying child. " G i v e me a third n a m e " . On being told thus, he said again. 10. " O lord, you are Śarva b y n a m e . " O n being told thus he cried again, " W h y do you cry ?", asked B r a h m a again to t h e crying child. 11. " G i v e me a fourth n a m e . " On being told thus, he said again, " O lord, you are I ś ā n a b y n a m e " . O n being told thus he cried again. 12. " W h y d o you c r y " , said B r a h m a t o t h a t crying child again. He replied to the self-born l o r d — " G i v e me a fifth name." 13. " Y o u a r e t h e lord a n d m a s t e r of all Paśus ( A n i m a l s , living b e i n g s ) " . On being told thus, he cried again. " W h y do you c r y ? " said B r a h m a to t h a t crying child, once again. 14. " I n d e e d , give m e t h e sixth n a m e " . O n being told thus h e replied t o h i m — " O lord, you a r e Bhīma b y n a m e " . O n being told thus he cried again. 15. " W h y d o you cry ? " , asked B r a h m a again t o t h a t crying child. " G i v e m e t h e seventh n a m e " . O n being told thus he replied : 1.

T h i s n a m e signifies identification of R u d r a a n d Fire.

2.

W. 5 ff. T h i s episode of crying for a n a m e a n d g o d

Brahma's

assigning eight n a m e s is a reproduction of the same in Śatapatha B r ā h m a n a (SB. 6.1.3.1-18).

It

is from this concept in

SB that Bd.P.

(and

other

Purānas such as V ā . P . , L P ) developed the Asta-mūrli conception of R u d r a . S e e the next note.


103

1.2.10.16-23

16. " O lord, you a r e U g r a b y n a m e " . O n being told thus, h e cried a g a i n . T o t h a t crying child he said— " D o not c r y " . 17. He s a i d — ' G i v e me, O lord, the eighth n a m e " . " Y o u arc M a h ā d e v a b y n a m e " . O n being told thus, h e stopped crying. 18. After securing these n a m e s . Nilalohita requested B r a h m a — " I n d i c a t e t h e abodes of these n a m e s " . 1 19-20. T h e n the bodies were lord u n t o these n a m e s ( a b o d e s ) . water, the e a r t h , the wind, the fire, B r ā h m a n a a n d t h e M o o n . T h u s the ties. T h e lord is to be worshipped, those bodies.

allotted by t h e self-bom T h e y w e r e — t h e sun, the t h e Ether, t h e initiated bodies were of eight varie­ saluted a n d bowed to in

21-23. B r a h m a said again to the child N i l a l o h i t a — " O lord, at the outset, your n a m e has been m e n t i o n e d by me as R u d r a . T h e sun shall b e t h e f i r s t body u n t o thy f i r s t n a m e " .

1. mūrtis)

T h e abodes of the names of Nilalohita are the eight forms of Śiva

and

they symbolize

the

five

Mahā-bhūtas

(asfa-

(gross e l e m e n t s ) ,

the t w o principle vital airs Prāna a n d Apāna and the principle of the M i n d . T h e following tabular statement of the eight forms of Rudra, their abodes, names of their consorts and children will clarify this chapter.

1.

Name or

A b o d e or

Form of

bodies

Śiva Rudra

alloted the sunj (i.e.

Designation of that body Raudri

2.

Bhava

Prāna or Heat) the water Apah

3.

Śarva

the earth

N a m e o f the

N o of the sons

consort Suvarcalā

the

satum

(Śani) Dhātri

T h e Venus (Śukra)

Bhūmi

Vikeśi

The

Mars

(Ańgāraka) 4.

I śāna

the wind

Vāta

Śivā i

i)

Manojava

ii) Avijñātagati 5.

Paśupati

the Fire

Agni

Svāhā

Skanda

6. 7.

Bhima

the Ether

Akāśa

Quarters

Ugra

Svarga

Initiated

Diksita

Diksā

Santāna

Brāhmana

Brāhmana

The Moon

Candramas

Rohioi

Budha

8.

Mahādeva

( A p ā n a ) or cold


104

Brahmānda Purāna

W h e n this was uttered his splendour became an eye, which illuminates, t h e n it entered the sun. H e n c e he ( t h e sun) is r e m e m b e r e d as R u d r a . O n e shall avoid seeing t h e sun while rising or while setting. 24. Since the sun comes into view frequently a n d since it vanishes frequently, one, who desires for longevity, should not directly see the sun. O n e should always be p u r e . 25-26. Worshipping d u r i n g t h e two periods of junctions ( t h e d a w n and t h e d u s k ) , a n d repeating t h e S ā m a n , R k a n d Yajus hymns, the B r ā h m a n a s propitiate a n d strengthen R u d r a of t h e past a n d t h e future. At t h e time of rising, the sun stands on the Rks, at m i d d a y he stands on t h e Yajus a n d in t h e late afternoon, R u d r a lies down a n d takes rest gradually. H e n c e , in fact, t h e fun never rises nor does he set. 1 27. O n e shall never pass urine in the direction of R u d r a (i.e. the sun) in whatever condition he may b e . 28. Lord R u d r a does not oppress the B r ā h m a n a who strictly adheres to these principles. T h e n B r a h m a said again t o t h a t lord N i l a l o h i t a . 29. Y o u r second n a m e has been m e n t i o n e d by me as Bhava. Let t h e waters be the second physical body of this n a m e of yours. 30. On this being m e n t i o n e d , the element of t h e n a t u r e of Rasa ( J u i c e ) (i.e. water) became stationed in his body. Since he entered it, t h e water is remembered as Bhava. 3 1 . Since t h e living beings are born ( b h a v a n ā t ) of h i m , a n d since he evolves (bhāvanāt) the living beings t h r o u g h t h e m (i.e. t h e w a t e r s ) he is called Bhava 2 (due to his creation a n d evolution of beings). 32. H e n c e , one shall never urinate or pass faeces into the waters. O n e should not spit into water, n o r plunge into t h e water in t h e n u d e n o r should a n y o n e have sexual intercourse within the waters.

T h e Soma-yāji B r ā h m a n a Yajamāna is regarded as the principle of the mind. Cf.

mono

vai

Tajamānasya

rūpam—Sat.

Br.1.2.8.84.

1.

T h i s Puranic speculation turned out to be a scientific truth.

2.

T h i s e t y m o l o g y of 'Bhava' is confirmed in V ā . P .


1.2.10.33-44

105

33. N o r should one e n u m e r a t e (?) these w h e t h e r flowing or still. T h e s e bodies of t h e waters a r e declared by t h e sages as Medhya ( P u r e ) a n d Amedhya ( I m p u r e ) . 34. Waters devoid of taste, waters of bad o d o u r a n d colour a n d water in very little q u a n t i t y should be avoided on all occasions. T h e sea is the source of origin of waters. H e n c e waters desire it. 35. After r e a c h i n g t h e sea, t h e waters become sacred a n d Amrta ( n e c t a r i n e ) . H e n c e one should n o t obstruct t h e waters since they love the sea. 36a. L o r d Bhava does n o t oppress or injure h i m w h o treats w a t e r thus. 36b.

T h e n B r a h m a said again to child Nilalohita :

37. " O lord, the third n a m e o f yours t h a t h a d b e e n m e n t i o n e d by me is Śarva. Let this e a r t h be t h e physical b o d y of t h a t third name. 38. O n this being mentioned, t h e h a r d and f i r m ( p a r t ) in his body, n a m e l y bones entered the e a r t h . Therefore, it is called Śarva. 39. H e n c e , one should not evacuate the bowels or uri­ n a t e i n t h e ploughed l a n d . O n e should not u r i n a t e i n t h e shade of trees, or in the p a t h w a y or in one's own shadow. 40. After covering t h e ground w i t h grass a n d covering one's head, one should evacute the bowels. Śarva does not oppress or injure h i m who behaves like this towards t h e earth. 41-43. T h e n B r a h m a said again to child N i l a l o h i t a . " Y o u r fourth n a m e t h a t h a d b e e n declared by me is Iśāna. V ā y u ( W i n d ) should be the fourth physical b o d y of your fourth n a m e . As soon as this was spoken t h a t (vital b r e a t h ) which was stationed in him in five groups a n d is t e r m e d Prāna (Vital b r e a t h ) entered V ā y u . H e n c e wind is Iśāna. H e n c e one should not censure or revile at V ā y u the lord himself as it blows violently. 44. L o r d M a h e ś ā n a does not oppress or injure h i m who properly behaves towards the w i n d and those who h o n o u r •the w i n d by m e a n s of Yajñas and those w h o serve it.


106

Brahmānda Purāna-

45-49. T h e n B r a h m a said again to t h a t lord D h ū m r a (smoke-coloured) I ś v a r a . " T h e fifth n a m e of yours t h a t h a d been m e n t i o n e d by me is Paśupati. Let this Agni (Fire) be the fifth body of y o u r fifth n a m e " . On this being mentioned, the fiery brilliance t h a t h a d been stationed in his body and is t e r m e d Usna ( H o t ) entered the fire. H e n c e it (fire) is Paśu­ pati. Since Agni is Paśu (Animal) a n d since he protects a n i ­ mals, the physical body of Paśupati is designated (defined) as Agni. H e n c e , one should not b u r n i m p u r e o r d u r e nor should one w a r m one's feet. O n e should not place it b e n e a t h n o r should one trespass it. Lord P a ś u p a t i does not oppress or injure h i m who behaves properly like this. 50-54. T h e n B r a h m a said once again to t h a t lord Śvetapiñgala ( W h i t e - a n d - t a w n y - c o l o u r e d ) . "O lord, the sixth n a m e of yours that h a d been mentioned by me is Bhīma. Let Ākāśa ( E t h e r ) be the sixth b o d y of t h a t n a m e " . On this being utter­ ed, the cavity t h a t h a d been in his body entered t h e ether. H e n c e , it is the body of Bhīma. Since the lord is r e m e m b e r e d as existing in the e t h e r . O n e should not evacuate the bowels, u r i n a t e , take food, drink water, have sexual intercourse or throw up leavings of food consumed without having a cover on. T h e lord does not oppress or injure h i m who behaves towards Bhīma thus. T h e n B r a h m a said once again to t h a t lord, who is mighty. 55. O lord, your seventh n a m e t h a t h a d been m e n t i o n e d b y m e was U g r a . T h e initiated B r ā h m a n a becomes the body of t h a t n a m e of yours. 56. On this being uttered, the Caitanya (consciousness, alertness) t h a t was in his body entered the initiated Brāh­ m a n a w h o performs the Soma sacrifice. 57. F o r t h a t d u r a t i o n , the initiated B r ā h m a n a becomes lord U g r a . H e n c e , no one shall abuse or revile at h i m nor shall anyone speak vulgar word s a b o u t him. 58. Those w h o censure h i m take away his sins. Lord U g r a does not: oppress or injure those B r ā h m a n a s who behave properly thus. 59-61. T h e n B r a h m a once again said to t h a t lord with the lustre of the sun, " Y o u r eight n a m e t h a t h a d been m e n -


1.2.10.62-75

107

tioned by me is M a h ā d e v a . L e t the m o o n be t h e physical b o d y of t h a t eighth n a m e of y o u r s " . On this being m e n t i o n e d , t h e mind of the lord t h a t h a d been conceiving a n d c o n t e m p ­ lating entered the Candramasa ( M o o n ) . Therefore, the m o o n is M a h ā d e v a . H e n c e , this great lord is considered to be the Moon. 62. On the new m o o n day a B r ā h m a n a should not cut trees, bushes or medicinal herbs. Soma ( M o o n ) is remem­ bered as M a h ā d e v a a n d his A t m a n (soul) is the g r o u p of medicinal herbs. 63-65. M a h ā d e v a does not slay him who always remains thus on the P a r v a n days ( n e w m o o n , full m o o n e t c . ) a n d w h o understands t h a t lord thus. T h e sun protects the subjects by the day a n d the m o o n , at the night. O n t h e n i g h t (i.e. o n the new m o o n ) the sun a n d the m o o n join together. O n t h a t Amāvāsyā (New M o o n ) n i g h t one shall always be Tukta ( p r o p e r l y performing Yogic exer­ cise) . All this visible universe has been pervaded by R u d r a , t h r o u g h his bodies a n d names. 66. T h i s sun t h a t wanders alone is called R u d r a . It is d u e to the light of the sun t h a t the subjects see with t h e i r eyes. 67-69. R u d r a remains a liberated soul a n d drinks w a t e r t h r o u g h his rays. Food is eaten a n d w a t e r is d r u n k w i t h a desire for food, w a t e r etc. T h e body arising out of water develops a n d nourishes the bodies. T h a t e a r t h e n body of the lord is good as it sustains the subjects. It is t h r o u g h this t h a t the lord upholds all the sub­ jects by means of a steady splendour. 70-75. T h e gaseous body of Iśāna is the vital b r e a t h of all living beings. It is stationed in the bodies of all living beings along w i t h the functions of t h e vital b r e a t h . T h e body of Paśupati cooks a n d digests t h e food consum­ ed a n d t h e beverages drunk, in the bellies of t h e living beings. T h a t which cooks is called Agni (fire i.e. Gastric fire). T h e cavities t h a t are within the bodies for the p u r p o s e of the free movement of the air constitute the body (of t h e lord) called Bhīma.


108

Brahmānda Purāna

T h e existence of expounders of B r a h m a n is, d u e to C a i t a n y a (consciousness) of the initiated ones. T h a t body is of the form of U g r a . Therefore, the initiated one is remem­ bered as U g r a . T h e p a r t of the body t h a t conceives a n d contemplates a n d which is stationed in the subjects is the m e n t a l body, the m o o n — i t is stationed in the living beings. Being b o r n again a n d a g a i n he becomes fresh a n d fresh. It is being d r u n k at the p r o p e r time by the Devas along with t h e Pitrs. T h e m o o n of a q u a t i c n a t u r e w i t h n e c t a r within him is remembered as Mahādeva. 76. His first b o d y has been glorified by the n a m e R a u d r i . Its wife is Suvarcalā a n d her son is Śanaiścara ( t h e Saturn). 77. T h e second body of Bhava is r e m e m b e r e d by the n a m e of Apah. Its wife is r e m e m b e r e d as D h ā t r ī a n d the son is r e m e m b e r e d as U ś a n a s (the V e n u s ) . 78. T h e b o d y of the t h i r d n a m e of Śarva is Bhūmi ( t h e e a r t h ) . Its wife is Vikeśī a n d the son is r e m e m b e r e d as Ańgāraka (the Mars). 79-84. Vāta (wind) is the body of the fourth n a m e of ī ś ā n a . Its wife is Śivā by n a m e . Anila ( W i n d ) has two sons, viz. : M a n o j a v a (Having the speed of the m i n d ) a n d Avijñātag a t i ( O n e of inscrutable m o v e m e n t ) . Agni (Fire) is r e m e m b e r e d by B r ā h m a n a s , as the body of P a ś u p a t i . S v ā h ā is r e m e m b e r e d as its wife. S k a n d a is remem­ bered as its son. T h e E t h e r (Akāśa) is called t h e body Bhīma, his sixth n a m e . T h e quarters are r e m e m b e r e d as its wives a n d Svarga ( h e a v e n ) is r e m e m b e r e d as its son. T h e seventh b o d y U g r a is r e m e m b e r e d as the initiated B r ā h m a n a . Dīksā is r e m e m b e r e d as its wife a n d S a n t ā n a is called the son. T h e b o d y Mahat of the eighth n a m e is remembered as Candramas( M o o n ) . Its wife is Rohinī. H e r son is remembered as Budha. T h u s these bodies of his have b e e n recounted along w i t h the names.


109

1.2.10.85-88—11.l-5a

85-87. T h e lord is to be saluted a n d b o w e d to in those bodies w i t h t h e respective n a m e s for each body. He should be saluted by devotees in the sun, t h e w a t e r s , t h e E a r t h , t h e wind, t h e fire, t h e Ether, t h e i n i t i a t e d one as well as the m o o n . H e should b e h o n o u r e d w i t h g r e a t devotion along with t h e n a m e s . He who knows t h a t lord thus with the bodies a n d n a m e s acquires p r o g e n y a n d attains t h e Sāyujya ( I d e n t i t y ) of L o r d Bhava. T h u s the esoteric fame of Bhīma has been recoun­ ted to y o u . 88. O B r ā h m a n a s , let there be welfare u n t o the b i p e d s . Let there be welfare u n t o the q u a d r u p e d s . N o w t h e names a n d bodies of M a h ā d e v a have been recounted. Listen to t h e progeny of B h r g u .

CHAPTER ELEVEN The Creation of Sages* Sūta said : 1-3. K h y ā t i gave b i r t h to a d a u g h e r a n d two sons. T h e sons were masters of happiness a n d misery. T h e y g r a n t auspi­ cious a n d inauspicious results u n t o all living beings. T h e y were t h e gods D h ā t r ( s u p p o r t e r ) a n d V i d h ā t r (Dispenser of d e s t i n y ) . T h e y used (to live a n d ) w a l k a b o u t t h r o u g h o u t the M a n v a n t a r a . T h e i r elder sister, goddess Sri, purified the worlds. T h e splendid lady attained lord N ā r ā y a n a as h e r husband. Bala ( s t r e n g t h ) a n d U n m ā d a ( l u n a c y ) were b o r n o f her a s t h e sons of N ā r ā y a n a . 4-5a.

Tejas (fiery brilliance) was the

son

of Bala a n d

•This chapter deals with the progeny of the famous seven sages such as Bhrgu, Ańgiras, Atri, P u l a h a a n d others. After mentioning their important descendants we are told that all these races passed away in the S v ā y a m b h u v a Manvantara. T h i s chapter corresponds to V ā . P . c h . 2 8 .


110

Brahmānola Purāna

Sarhśaya ( D o u b t ) was t h e son of U n m ā d a . O t h e r m e n t a l sons too were b o r n of him. T h e y move a b o u t in the firmament. T h e y drive a n d carry the aerial chariots of the Devas a n d persons of auspicious rites. 5b-6. Ayati (future) a n d Niyati ( R e s t r a i n t ) , the d a u g h ­ ters of M e r u * are remembered as t h e wives of V i d h ā t r a n d D h ā t r . P r ā n a a n d M r k a n d a of firm holy vows were their sons. T h e y are eternal a n d Brahmakośas ( t h e treasury of B r a h m a n or Vedas). 7. M ā r k a n d e y a was born of Manasvinī (as the son) of M r k a n d a . His son Vedaśiras was b o r n of D h ū m r a p a t n ī . 8. Sons of Vedaśiras in ( t h r o u g h ) Pīvarī are remem­ bered as Propagators of the race. These sages who are wellk n o w n as M ā r k a n d e y a s (Descendants of M r k a n d a ) were masters of the Vedas. 9-10. D y u t i m ā n was born of P u n d a r ī k ā , as the son of P r ā n a . D y u t i m ā n h a d two sons, viz. : U n n a t a a n d Svanavāta. These two sons h a d sons a n d grandsons through m u t u a l alliances a m o n g t h e descendants of Bhrgu. T h e y passed away d u r i n g t h e Svāyambhuva M a n v a n t a r a . Listen to t h e progeny of Marīci. 11. U n d e r s t a n d t h a t , S a m b h ū t i , the wife of M a r ī c i t h e Prajāpati, gave b i r t h to the son P ū r n a m ā s a a n d the following -daughters : 12. K r s i , Vrsti, Tvisā and the splendid U p a c i t i . P ū r n a ­ māsa begot of Sarasvatī two sons: 13. T h e two were Viraja who was righteous a n d Paravaśa. Viraja's son was a scholar, well known by the n a m e Sudhāman. 14. S u d h ā m a n , t h e son of Viraja a n d Gaurī, resorted to t h e Eastern q u a r t e r . He was a valorous a n d noble-souled guar­ dian of the q u a r t e r , ( r u l e r of the w o r l d ) . 15-16. Parvaśa, of great fame, entered ( t h e task of) *

V ā . P . 8 . 4 reads: dve tu kanye for meru kalpa hereof.

It means accord­

i n g to V ā . P . M e r u was not the father of Ayati and Niyati. M a y we take M e r u as a K a l p a ?


1.2.11.17-28a

111

counting holy occasions (Parva-ganana ? ) . P a r v a ś a * begot of Parvaśā two sons, viz. : Y a j u r d h ā m a n the intelligent a n d Stambhakās'yapa. T h e i r two sons Sanyāsa a n d Niścita stabi­ lised their line. 17-18. Smrti, the wife of Ańgiras, gave b i r t h to these children—four d a u g h t e r s a n d two sons. T h e four daughters w h o were holy a n d well-reputed in the worlds, were viz. Sinŕvāli, K u h ū , R ā k ā a n d A n u m a t i . T h e two sons were B h a r a t ā g n i a n d Kīrtimān. 19. Sadvatī gave b i r t h to Parjanya the son of Agni (i.e. B h a r a t ā g n i ) . (Another) Parjanya (otherwise called) Hira n y a r o m a n was b o r n of M a r l c i . 20-21. He is r e m e m b e r e d as a L o k a p ā l a ( r u l e r of the world, g u a r d i a n of the q u a r t e r ) staying till the ultimate deluge. D h e n u k a gave birth to Carisnu a n d D h r t i m ā n , the two sinless sons of K ī r t i m ā n . Both of them were the most excellent a m o n g t h e descendants of Ańgiras. T h e i r sons a n d grandsons r a n to thousands. T h e y h a v e all passed away. 22-24. Anasūyā gave birth to five Atreyas (i.e. sons of Atri) who were free from sins. She gave b i r t h to a d a u g h t e r also n a m e d Śruti w h o was the m o t h e r of Ś a ń k h a p ā d a . She was the wife o f K a r d a m a , the Prajāpati ( L o r d of subjects) a n d son of P u l a h a . T h e five Ātrcyas were Satya-Netra, H a v y a , Apom ū r t i , Śanaiścara a n d Soma the f i f t h one a m o n g t h e m . T h e y passed away a l o n g with the Y ā m a d e v a s in the S v ā y a m b h u v a Manvantara. 25. T h e sons a n d grandsons of those noble-souled Atreyas were h u n d r e d s a n d thousands. T h e y all passed away in t h e Svāyambhuva M a n v a n t a r a . 26. D ā n ā g n i was the son of Prīti, the wife of Pulastya. He is remembered as Agastya in his previous b i r t h in t h e Svāyambhuva M a n v a n t a r a . 27-28a. T h e m i d d l e one was D e v a b ā h u a n d the t h i r d son was Atri by n a m e (thus Pulastya h a d ) three sons. T h e i r younger sister n a m e d Sadvatī was well-known. She is r e m e m * T h e corresponding verse in V ā . P . 2 8 reads: Sarvaganānām. It m e a n s •Parvaśa entered into all t h e g a n a s (?)


Brahmānda Purāna

112

bered as t h e splendid a n d p u r e wife of Agni (i.e. B h a r a t ā g n i ) a n d m o t h e r of Parjanya. 28b-29. Sujańghī, the wife of D ā n ā g n i , t h e intelligent son of t h e B r a h m a n i c a l sage Pulastya a n d Prīti, gave birth to m a n y sons. T h e y a r e well known as Paulastyas. T h e y a r e remembered ( t o have lived) in S v ā y a m b h u v a M a n v a n t a r a . 30. K s a m ā gave birth to t h e sons of P u l a h a * , t h e Prajāpati. All of them h a d t h e brilliance of t h e three sacrificial fires. T h e i r fame is well-established. 3 1 . T h e y were three viz. K a r d a m a , U r v a r i v ā n a n d Sahisnu. Sage K a n a k a p ī t h a (also was his s o n ) . T h e r e was a beautiful d a u g h t e r n a m e d Pīvarī. 32. K a r d a m a ' s wife Śruti w h o was t h e d a u g h t e r of Atri gave b i r t h to a son n a m e d Ś a ń k h a p ā d a a n d a d a u g h t e r n a m e d Kāmyā. 33. It is r e p o r t e d t h a t this Ś a ń k h a p ā d a was prosperous ruler of t h e world a n d lord of t h e subjects. He was devoted to t h e southern q u a r t e r . K ā m y ā was given in m a r r i a g e to P r i y a v r a t a . 34. K ā m y ā b o r e to P r i y a v r a t a ten sons on a p a r with t h e S v ā y a m b h u v a M a n u a n d two d a u g h t e r s . It is t h r o u g h these t h a t the Ksatriya race spread. 35. Y a ś o d h a r ā , the lady of beautiful waist, gave b i r t h to Sahisnu, the son of K a n a k a p ī t h a . ( S h e gave b i r t h ) to K ā m a deva (also). 36. S a n n a t i b o r e auspicious sons to K r a t u . T h e y were equal to K r a t u . T h e y h a d neither wives n o r sons. All of t h e m were c e l i b a t e . 37. T h e y were well k n o w n as Vālakhilyas and a r e sixty thousand in n u m b e r . T h e y s u r r o u n d the sun a n d go a h e a d in front of A r u n a . 38-39a. A l l o f t h e m a r e ( p e r p e t u a l ) associates of t h e S u n till t h e time of u l t i m a t e a n n i h i l a t i o n (of t h e universe). T h e y h a d two younger sisters, P u n y ā arid Satyavatī. T h e y were t h e daughters-in-law of P a r v a ś ā , the son o f P ū r n a m ā s a .

•Corrected misprint.

from

V ā . P . 2 8 . 25a. as Pulastya in this text is an obvious


I.2.II.39b-45—I2.I-2a

113

39b-40. T h e seven (Vasisthas) were b o r n of Ūrjā as t h e sons of Vasistha. T h e i r elder sister was a d a u g h t e r of beauti­ ful waist n a m e d P u n d a r ī k ā . She was the m o t h e r of D y u t i m ā n a n d the beloved wife of P r ā n a . 41-42a. H e r younger brothers, the seven sons of Vasistha a r e well known. T h e y a r e — R a k s a , G a r t a , Ū r d h v a b ā h u , Savana, P a v a n a , Sutapas a n d Śańku. All of t h e m are r e m e m b e r e d as seven sages. 42b-45. T h e famous d a u g h t e r of M ā r k a n d e y a , the n o b l e lady of excellent limbs, gave b i r t h to R a t n a , the king of wes­ t e r n q u a r t e r . (He was also known as) K e t u m ā n a n d he was a Prajāpati. T h e races of the noble-souled sons of Vasistha passed away in the S v ā y a m b h u v a M a n v a n t a r a . Listen to the p r o g e n y of Agni. T h u s the creation of sages has been recounted along w i t h their a t t e n d a n t s . Henceforth, I shall r e c o u n t the family of Agni in detail a n d in the proper order.

CHAPTER

TWELVE

The Race of Agni* Sūta said : deity

l-2a. A m e n t a l son of B r a h m a is r e m e m b e r e d as t h e identifying itself with fire in the Svāyambhuva M a n v a n *This chapter presents the forty-nine ritualistic functions of the Fire

as so m a n y different Agni gods a n d gives their arrangement or correlations ia a genealogical form. As a matter of fact, it is a V e d i c concept as c a n be seen from

the notes. T h i s section concerning Agnivarhśa must have been possibly

a part of the original ( U r - ) purāna as m a n y verses hereof are textually identical w i t h those in V ā . P . 29, M t . P . 5 1 . T h e Mbh. Vana Chs. 217-22 (Ańgirasa k h y ā n a ) give a detailed description of the ritualistic functions of fire.

upā-


Brahm&n$a Purāna

114 1

tara. Svāhā bore to h i m three sons, viz. : P a v a m ā n a a n d Suci who is remembered as Agni also. 2b-3. T h e P a v a m ā n a fire is t h a t which is obtained by c h u r n i n g ( t h e Arani), Pāvaka is the fire originating from light­ ning. Śuci should be known as the solar fire. These a r e t h e three sons of Svāhā. [ (Repetition) * the P a v a m ā n a fire is t h a t which is obtained by churning ( t h e A r a n i ) , a n d Śuci is r e m e m b e r e d as solar fire.] 4-6. T h e Pāvaka fire has water as the source of origin a n d it originates from t h e lightning. T h e y a r e their respective abodes (viz. : Arani, t h e sun a n d the l i g h t n i n g ) . K a v y a v ā h a n a is said to be the son of P a v a m ā n a . Saharaksa was the son of Pāvaka a n d H a v y a v ā h a was t h e son of Śuci. H a v y a v ā h a is the fire of the Devas; K a v y a v ā h a n a is fire of the.Pitrs; S a h a r a k s a is the fire of the Asuras. T h e r e (thus) t h r e e fires p e r t a i n i n g to the three (i.e. the Devas, Pitrs a n d the Asuras). T h e sons a n d grandsons of these fortynine in n u m b e r . 7.

I shall m e n t i o n their divisions separately along

their names. T h e secular fire is well

the are the are

with

known as the first son of

Brahma. 8. T h e good son of B r a h m a d a t t ā g n i 2 ( t h e fire h a n d e d over by B r a h m a ) is^well known by the n a m e B h a r a t a . Vaiśv ā n a r a was his son, a n d he carried H a v y a for a h u n d r e d years. T h e text repeats this, hence included here. 1. WA-6 : T h e followingg genealogical genealogical tree will clarify the relation of these fires: Agra=Śvāhā

Pavamāna ( = G ā r h a p a t y a )

Pāvaka

I (=Daksināgni) born of Arani (cf. R v . I I I . 2 9 . 2 ) | or source: | Water or Lightening F u n c t i o n s : kavya-vāhana • t P e r t a i t i s to Pitrs) (Vaidyuta) Saharaksa (belongs to Asuras) 2.

Śuci

(=Ahavaniya)

I The Sun Havya-vāhana pertains to D e v a s

V ā . P . 29-7 reads Brahmaudanigni instead of Brahmadattāgni of B D . P.

T h a t reading i s supported b y M t . P . T h e genealogy i s : Brahmadatta o r Brahma-


1.2.12.9-18

115

9-10. Formerly the fire Edhiti was g a t h e r e d by A t h a r v a n 1 in the ocean Puskara. H e n c e t h a t secular fire is A t h a r v a n a . D a r p a h ā is remembered as the son of A t h a r v a n . Bhrgu was b o r n as A t h a r v a n a n d Fire is remembered as A t h a r v a n a (son of A t h a r v a n ) . H e n c e the secular fire is considered D a d h y a ń , 8 t h e son of A t h a r v a n a . 11. P a v a m ā n a , t h e son of Atharvan, is remembered by t h e wise as one t h a t should be generated by churning. It should be known as G ā r h a p a t y a fire. His two sons are r e m e m b e r e d as follows : 12. ( T h e y are Śarhsya a n d Ś u k a * (śukra in V ā . P. 9-11) Śarhsya is A h a v a n l y a fire w h o is remembered as H a v y a v ā h a n a . T h e second son is Śuka (śukra in Vā. P.) a n d he is said to be t h e fire t h a t is gathered a n d carried. 13. Savya a n d A p a s a v y a * * were the two sons of Śamsya. Ś a m s y a , t h e H a v y a v ā h a n a , loved sixteen rivers. 14-18. T h e fire Śamsya w h o is r e m e m b e r e d as A h a v a n ī y a fire as well as one w h o is identified w i t h fire (AbhimSnin, one

udana Bharata Vaiśvānara w h o carried Havya to gods. ŚBr. ( Ś a t a p a t h a Brāh­ m a n a ) 1.4.2.2 explains that Agni is called Bharata as he supplies Havya to

gods:

esa agnir hi devebhyo bharati tasmād bharatognir

ityāhuh

/

In other words this genealogy becomes an equation thus: B r a h m a d a t t a - = B h a r a t a = V a i ś v ā n a r a , the carrier of food to gods. 1.

.

T h i s has a reference to R v . V I . 1 6 . 1 3 where A g n i is said to h a v e b e e n

churned out of Puskara. According to ŚBr. V I . 4 . 2 . 2 , Puskara=Waters

(Āpo

vai Puskaram). ŚBr.VII.4.1.13 explains that w h e n Indra g o t frightened after slaying Vrtra, he resorted to waters w h i c h created a city (Par) for h i m a n d h e n c e came

to

be known as Puskara (asmai puram akurvarhs tasmit puskaram

tat puskaram

ha

vai

ācaksate paroksam).

2.

It is probably the same as Daksināgni.

*

krtuike cārirā dhisnī—the

fireplace

movable in a carriage

(Krttikā).

T h e idea is obscure. T h e V ā . P . 29.16a. reads differently as follows: dhisnyād **

avyabhicirinyas

tāsūtpann&s

tu

dhiīnayah

//

T h i s is a wrong reading as 'savya' a n d 'apasavya' are no fires at

*Sabhya' a n d 'āvasathya' are the names of the

fire.

Vā.P.29.12

reads: tathā

sabhySvasathyau

vai

Śarhsasyāgruh

suUhmbhau.

all.

correctly


116

Brahmānda Purāna

who takes pride) by the B r ā h m a n a s loved these sixteen rivers :* viz. : Kāverī, K r s n a v e n ā , N a r m a d ā , Y a m u n a , G o d ā varī, Vitastā, G a n d r a b h ā g ā , Irāvatī, Vipāśā, Kauśikī, Ś a t a d r u , Sarayū, Sītā, Sarasvatī, H r ā d i n ī a n d Pāvanī. He divided himself into sixteen Dhāmans ( a b o d e s ) a n d in those abodes he deposit­ ed himself. T h e Dhisnis (abodes i.e. fire-places) were caused to move by vehicles (Krttikas) (?) a n d t h e sons were b o r n in those Dhisnīs. H e n c e those sons a r e called " D h i s n i s " . T h u s these sons of t h e rivers were b o r n in the Dhisnis a n d they a r e glorified as Dhisnis. 19. Some of these fires are Viharaniyas, ( p o r t a b l e , those t h a t should be carried or r e m o v e d ) , a n d others a r e Upastheyas2 (those t h a t should be m a d e to sit, deposited (?). T h e y shall be briefly b u t factually r e c o u n t e d . 20. T h e following a r e the sons of Śamsya. All of them are remembered by B r ā h m a n a s as Upastheyas. V i b h u , Pravah a n a a n d Agnīdhra a n d others, Dhisnis ( a l r e a d y deposited f i r e s ) 1. T h i s is a poetic w a y of describing the spread of the V e d i c Y a j ñ a cult. This portable fire was carried from the Sitā (The O x u s — V . S . A g r a w a l a ; the J a x a r t e s — N . L. D e ) in the Central Asia d o w n to the Kāveri in the South India. M o d e r n political m a p s of India blind us to the vast geographical area which w a s India to the Purāna-writers. It was on the Sītā that N ā r a d a m e t his brothers Sanatkumāra etc. and where probably the N . P . was presumed to have been narrated. For the ancient names of the rivers hereof modern names are given in brackets : Vitastā ( T h e J h e l u m ) , Candrabhāgā ( T h e C h i n a b ) , Irāvati ( T h e R a v i ) , V i p ā ś ā ( T h e Bias), Kauśiki ( T h e K o s i ) , Śatadru ( T h e Sutlej), Sītā (the O x u s or the Jaxartes or the T a r i m — Y a r k a n d ) , Hrādinī or Hlādini ( T h e Brahmaputra?), Pāvani ( T h e G h a g g a r ? ) . T h e list of rivers shows that the spread of the Yajña-cult covered parts of Central Asia, the Panjab a n d Kashmir, the U t t a r Pradesh (and probably Bihar), t h e M a d h y a Pradesh, Maharashtra a n d part of Southern Karnatak. ' T h e sons of the rivers' is obviously the riperian population w h i c h followed the Yajña cult. 2. T h e Purāna classifies Dhisnya fires into Viharaniyas and Upastheyas. T h e translation gives only the literal interpretations of the terms. T h e Dhisnya was a side-altar of a h e a p of earth covered w i t h sand. On t h a t altar fire w a s placed.. In the Soma-sacrifice, these fires were placed between the altar ( V e d i ) of the Śrauta Yajña a n d the U t t a r a V e d i m e a n t for the S o m a sacrifice. T h e designation Upastheya is given to those fires as they were to be approached at their fixed place in the Uttara-Vedi. T h e Viharanīya fires are so called as they could be taken to any spot considered necessary on the day of the Yajña.


117

1.2.12.21-30

a r e serially laid down in their p r o p e r places in a Savana (Soma sacrifice) on t h e d a y when t h e Soma-juice is extracted. 21-22. Listen to the d u e order of the fires t h a t a r e to be laid down A n u d d e ś y a * (without being given a n y p a r t i c u l a r d i r e c t i o n ) . B r ā h m a n a s * * worship t h e eight f i r e s beginning with S a m r ā d a g n i . T h e y a r e S a m r ā d a g n i etc. T h e second one is K r ś ā n u a n d it is inside t h e Altar. T h e third one is Parisatpavamāna. It is laid down as directed (anudiśyate) .*** 23. A n o t h e r fire is Pratalka, (otherwise) n a m e d N a b h a s . It is manifested in the Catvara (levelled spot of g r o u n d speci­ ally p r e p a r e d for the sacrifice). Havya t h a t is not besmeared ( w i t h g h e e ) is deposited in t h e fire in t h e Śāmitra vessel ( p a r ­ ticular vessel used in t h e sacrifice). 24. (Thereafter is the fire) R t u d h ā m a n t h a t is glorified as Sujyoti a n d A u d u m b a r y a Viśvavyacas is t h e ocean firef ? a n d is glorified in the abode of B r a h m a . 25-26. ( T h e fire) V a s u r d h ā m a n t h a t is Brahmajyoti is mentioned in t h e abode of B r a h m a . Ajaikapāt t h a t is an Upastheya is also Śālāsukhīyaka. A h i r b u d h n y a is an Anuddeśya fire. T h a t fire is remembered as G r h a p a t i . 27-28. Thereafter, I shall e n u m e r a t e his eight sons who are called V i h a r a n i y a s . 1 [ H e r e there is a repetition of verse N o . 20]. T h e fire H a v y a v ā h a n a is declared as H o t r l y a fire (i.e. f i r e used b y t h e H o t r ) . 29-30. T h e second fire here is n a m e d Pracetas t h a t is a subdued fire. Thereafter is t h e fire Vaiśvadeva. It is called ŚarhsiJ by t h e B r ā h m a n a s . T h e fire Uśik t h a t is K a v i is con­ ceived as Pota fire. It is also conceived as Āvāri fire, V ā b h ā r i a n d Vaisthlya. *

For

vācyānām, ** ed

by

anuddeśya

nivāsyānām

here

cf.

Vā.P.29.19a.

anirdeSyānya-

'undefinable or indescribable'. T h e printed text shows s o m e confusion, verse 2 1 A should be follow­

2 2 a after w h i c h 2 1 b should be taken. T h e translation is of the re­

arranged lines. •**

Vā.P.29.20 atra drśyate, 'is seen here'.

•f In V ā . P . 2 9 . 2 2 viśvasyāyasamudra seems to be the n a m e of the fire. 1. It is not k n o w n w h y there should be a different list of such fires as this list differs from that in M t . P .

t Vā.P.28a—brahma-sthāne sa ucyate. 'is s p o k e n of as being in the abode of B r a h m a .


118

Brahmānda Purāna

3 1 . T h e fire Avasphūrja is also called Vivasvān a n d Asthān. T h e eighth one which is fire S u d h y u is also called Mārjālīya. 32. Those Dhisnyas, the Viharaniyas, a r e being worshipped on t h e Sautya d a y ( t h a t is the d a y on which Soma juice is extracted) by t h e B r ā h m a n a s . It (i.e. S u d h y u ) is r e m e m b e r e d as the source of origin of the waters. I n d e e d it is conceived in waters. 33. T h e fire b y n a m e Pāvaka t h a t is born of waters and t h a t is called Abgarbha ( H a v i n g the waters as the w o m b ) should be known as the fire at the A v a b h r t h a (the holy ablution at the end of a sacrifice). It is worshipped along with V a r u n a . 34. H r c c h a y a (Abiding within the heart) is the fire t h a t is his (Pāvaka's) son. 1 It is the fire t h a t digests (food-stuffs) in the stomach of m e n . M r t y u m ā n is r e m e m b e r e d as t h e scholarly son of t h e Jathara-fire (Gastric fire). 35-36. T h a t fire b o r n m u t u a l l y m a y b u r n all the living beings here. T h e terrible S a m v a r t a k a fire is remembered as the son of the fire M a n y u m ā n (? M r t y u m ā n ) . It drinks water a n d lives in the ocean a n d has the face of a m a r e . Saharaksa is conceived as the son of Samudravāsin (residing within the ocean). 37. K s ā m a , the son of Saharaksa, burns t h e houses of m e n . His son is the fireKravyād a n d it consumes dead persons. 38. T h u s the sons of Pāvaka fire have b e e n described here. Thereafter is the solar fire Śuci. 2 It is called Āyus by t h e Gandharvas. 39. This fire generates other fires on being c h u r n e d in the A r a n i ; this fire is taken from one place to a n o t h e r ; this lord is known by the n a m e Āyus.

1.

VV.34-38 give the list of Pāvaka's sons. But actually they are given

here in the genealogical order as follows: Pāvaka—Hrcchaya—Mrtyumān

( M a n y u m ā n ) — S a m v a r t a k a (Vadavā-

n a l a ) — S a h a r a k s a — k s ā m a — K r a v y ādagni. 2.

T h e fires under group of Śuci are given in a genealogical order as

follows: Śuci or Ayus, M a h i s a , Sahasa, Adbhuta, Vividhi, Arka as enumerated in V . 4 3 .

Arka—nine

sons

of


1.2.12.40-50

119

40. M a h i s a was t h e son of Ayus. His son is n a m e d Sahasa. T h a t fire Sahasa is r e m e m b e r e d as t h e Abhimānin (Identifying itself with it) in the Yajñas of Pāka (cooking). 4 1 . T h e son of the fire Sahasa was A d b h u t a of great fame. Vividhi is r e m e m b e r e d as the great son of t h e fire Adbhuta. 42. (This fire) is one t h a t identifies itself with expia­ tory rites. It always consumes the Havis-offering t h a t is consign­ ed i n t o t h e fire. Arkka was the son of Vividhi. T h e following were t h e sons of t h a t fire ( A r k k a ) . 43. T h e y are—Anīkavān, Vājasrk, R a k s o h ā , Yastikrt, Surabhi, Vasu, A n n ā d a , Apravista a n d R u k m a r ā t . 44. These fourteen fires are the Progeny of the fire Śuci. These fires are said to be those t h a t are consecrated in t h e sacrifices. 45. In t h e M a n v a n t a r a of Svāyambhuva in the first Sarga ( c r e a t i o n ) , these fires t h a t are Abhimānins (those t h a t identify themselves) h a d passed away along with the Y ā m a s , t h e excellent Devas. 46. Formerly in the world, these H a v y a v ā h a n a s (fires) were those t h a t identified themselves with t h e abodes called Viharaniyas, b o t h sentient a n d insentient. 47. These fires were stationed in the holy rites a n d Yajñas. T h e y were (both) Kāmyas (those w i t h t h e fruit desired) a n d Naimittikas occasional ones or t h a t are utilised when cause arises). T h e y h a d passed away in the previous M a n v a n t a r a along with those Śukras a n d Yāgas (?) 48. In the M a n v a n t a r a of the first M a n u , they h a d passed away along with the holy noble-souled Devas. T h u s t h e abodes of these Sthānins (those t h a t identify themselves with the abodes) h a v e been e n u m e r a t e d by m e . 49. T h e characteristics of J ā t a v e d a s (fires) in the M a n v a n t a r a s of t h e past and future are e n u m e r a t e d t h r o u g h them. 50. All of t h e m are r e m e m b e r e d as ascetics a n d Brahmabhrts (those t h a t sustain the knowledge of B r a h m a n ) . All of t h e m were lords of subjects. T h e y are r e m e m b e r e d as L u m i n o u s .


120

Brahmānda Purāna

5 1 . These a r e to be known (as present) in all t h e seven M a n v a n t a r a s beginning with Svārocisa a n d ending with the Sāvarnya M a n v a n t a r a in regard to their names, forms a n d purposes. 5 2 . T h e present f i r e s exist along w i t h t h e c u r r e n t Yāma Devas. T h e future fires ( l i t . those t h a t have n o t y e t c o m e ) shall exist along with the future Devas. 53. T h u s the g r o u p of fires has been duly the p r o p e r order. Now henceforth t h e race in detail a n d in the d u e order.

CHAPTER

described in

of t h e Pitrs will be narrated

THIRTEEN

The Real Nature of'Kāla —Time : Ssatons (Rtuf)

as

Pitrs

(Manes)

Sūta said : 1. Even as B r a h m a was creating sons formerly in the S v ā y a m b h u v a M a n v a n t a r a , the h u m a n beings, the Asuras a n d the Devas were b o r n out of his limbs. 2. T h e Pitrs also were b o r n , considering h i m as their father ( ? ) . T h e m o d e of their creation has been described before. Let it be h e a r d briefly once again. 3. After c r e a t i n g the Devas, Asuras a n d the h u m a n beings, B r a h m a took pride in t h e m . (He conceived of a further c r e a t i o n also). ( T h e Pitrs) w h o were being considered like fathers, were born of his flanks. 4. T h e six seasons beginning with M a d h u ( S p r i n g ) (were b o r n of his flanks). T h e y call t h e m Pitrs. T h e vedic text s a y s , — " T h e seasons are t h e Pitrs a n d D e v a s . " 5. In all the M a n v a n t a r a s , past a n d future ( t h e same is r e p e a t e d ) . Formerly, these were born in the auspicious M a n v a n ­ t a r a of S v ā y a m b h u v a .


1.2.13.6-15

121

6-7a. T h e y are remembered by the n a m e Agnisvāttas a n d Barhisads. Those of t h e m who were householders, w h o did not perform Yajñas are r e m e m b e r e d as the Pitrs of the group Agnisvāttas. T h e y were not Āhitāgnis (those who regularly m a i n t a i n e d sacrificial fires). 7b-9. Those of t h e m who performed Yajñas are the Pitrs (known as) Somapifhins. Those who performed Agnihotras are remembered as the Pitrs called Barhisads. In this sacred lore, it has been decisively mentioned that the Rtus (seasons) are the Pitrs a n d the Devas. T h e months of M a d h u a n d M ā d h a v a (i.e. C a i t r a a n d V a i ś ā k h a ) should be known as Rasas; the m o n t h of Śuci a n d Śukra (i.e. J y e s t h a a n d A s ā d h a ) are Śusmins (Lustrous o n e s ) . T h e m o n t h s of N a b h a s a n d Ńabhsys (i.e. Śrāvana a n d B h ā d r a p a d a ) — t h e s e two are cited as Jivas. 10. T h e months of Isa a n d Ūrja (i.e. Āśvina a n d K ā r t t i k a ) a r e cited as Svadhāvats- T h e m o n t h s of Saha a n d Sahasya (i.e. Mārgaśīrsa a n d Pausa) a r e cited as G h o r a s . 11. T h e months of T a p a s a n d T a p a s y a (i.e. the m o n t h s of M ā g h a a n d P h ā l g u n a ) pertain to the winter, they a r e Manyumats. T h e units of time called Māsas (months) are included in the six periods of time (seasons). 12. These a r e called Rtus. T h e Rtus a r e the sons of B r a h m a . T h e y should be known as those identifying them­ selves with both sentient a n d non-sentient (objects). 13. In the abodes of Māsa (month) a n d Ardhamāsa (fort­ n i g h t ) , the Rtus (seasons) a r e considered the Sthānins ( t h e a b i d e r s ) . By m e a n s of the change of abodes, the Sthānābhimānins( those who identify themselves with the abodes )should be understood. 14. T h e days, the nights, the months, the seasons, the Ayanas ( t r o p i c a l transits of the sun) a n d the years are the a b o d e s ; t h e names of Abhimānins (deities identifying them­ selves) are in the same order. 15. T h e Sthānins (those w h o identify themselves with the a b o d e s ) who a r e established in these, a r e the states of time. T h e y are having those as their own selves, since they a r e of the s a m e essence as they. U n d e r s t a n d as I shall m e n t i o n t h e m .


122

Brahmānda Purāna 1

16. T h e various units (or states) of time are t h e Tithis of Parvans (dates of l u n a r fortnights), the junctions, the fortnights t h a t a r e on a p a r with halves of m o n t h s , t h e moments, the Kalās, K ā s t h ā s , M u h ū r t a s , days a n d nights. 17-18. T w o half-months m a k e one Māsa ( m o n t h ) . T w o m o n t h s m a k e w h a t is called Rtu. T h r e e Rtus m a k e one Ayana a n d t h e two Ayanas, (viz. : t h e southern a n d t h e northern) together constitute a year. These are the abodes for the Sthānins. T h e Rtus are t h e sons of N i m i . Similarly, they should be known as six in n u m b e r . 19-20. T h e five types of subjects (i.e. h u m a n beings, q u a d r u p e d s , birds, reptiles and trees) are remembered as the sons of Rtu. T h e y are characterised by their seasonal change. Since the mobile a n d the immobile beings are born through the Ārtavas (seasonal changes, menstruation etc.) t h e Ārtavas a r e fathers a n d t h e Rtus a r e grandfathers. W h e n they come together, t h e subjects of t h e Prajāpati are born. 2 1 . H e n c e t h e Vatsara ( y e a r ) is considered the great grand-father of t h e subjects. These Sthānins of t h e n a t u r e of the abodes in their respective abodes have been recounted. 22. T h e y are declared as those who have t h e same names, the same essence a n d the same n a t u r e as they ( i . e . units of t i m e ) . It is Samvatsara ( t h e year) t h a t is considered a n d re­ m e m b e r e d as P r a j ā p a t i . 23. Agni, the son of Samvatsara, is called rta by scholars. Since they are b o r n of R t a , they a r e called R t u s . 24-25. Years should be known as having six seasons. To the five types of subjects, viz. : bipeds, q u a d r u p e d s , birds, reptiles a n d t h e stationary beings, there are five Ārtavas (seasonal changes). T h e flower is remembered as K ā l ā r t a v a (seasonal change indicating p a r t i c u l a r period of time of trees. T h e state of being Rtu a n d Ārtava is recounted as Pitrtva ( t h e state of being Pitrs). 26.

1.

T h u s the Rlus a n d t h e Ārtavas should be known as

V V . 16-18 detail the units of time.


123

1.2.13.27-36

Pitrs because all the living beings are b o r n of t h e m t h r o u g h the Rtukāla(the time of Rtu—period favourable for c o n c e p t i o n ) . 1 27. H e n c e these Ārtavas are indeed the Pitrs—so we have h e a r d . These h a v e stayed t h r o u g h o u t the M a n v a n t a r a s as Kālābhimānins (identifying themselves w i t h the Kāla or t i m e ) . 28-30. T h e y are endowed w i t h causes a n d effects; they have p e r v a d e d everything t h r o u g h their s u p r e m a c y a n d i n d e e d these identify themselves with the abodes a n d they stand h e r e in consequence of t h a t special contact (?). T h e Pitrs a r e of various kinds viz. : Agnisvāttas a n d Barhisads. T w o daughters well known in the worlds were b o r n of Svadhā a n d the Pitrs. T h e y were M e n ā a n d . D h ā r a n ī by w h o m the entire universe is sustained. These two were expoun­ ders of B r a h m a n . These two were Yoginīs also. 31-34. M e n ā was t h e m e n t a l d a u g h t e r of those Pitrs w h o are m e n t i o n e d as Agnisvāttas. T h e y are r e m e m b e r e d as Upahūtas too. D h ā r a n ī is r e m e m b e r e d as the m e n t a l d a u g h t e r of Barhi­ sads. These Pitrs, the Barhisads are r e m e m b e r e d as Somapāyins too. 2 These two Pitrs gave their splendid daughters in m a r r i a g e for the sake of righteousness. T h e Agnisvāttas gave M e n ā as the wife u n t o the H i m a v ā n , T h e Barhisads gave the splendid d a u g h t e r D h ā r a n ī as wife u n t o M e r u . U n d e r s t a n d their grandsons. M e n ā the wife of H i m a v ā n gave birth to M a i n ā k a . 35. She gave b i r t h to G a ń g ā also, the most excellent river w h o b e c a m e the wife of the salt sea. K r a u ñ c a is the son of M a i n ā k a . It is d u e to h i m t h a t the c o n t i n e n t K r a u ñ c a h a s been so n a m e d . 36. D h ā r a n ī . the wife of M e r u , gave b i r t h to the son M a n d a r a endowed with divine m e d i c i n a l herbs as well as three well r e p u t e d d a u g h t e r s .

1.

T h i s explains w h y Rtus (Seasons) are regarded as Pitrs ( m a n e s ) .

2.

T h e r e is a difference of o p i n i o n a m o n g the Purānas about the n a m e s

of the daughters of these Pitrs. S u c h differences are reconciled by

presuming

that the events in Purānas refer to different K a l p a s or Manvantaras.


124

Brahmānda Purāna

37. T h e y were Vela, Niyati a n d the third ( d a u g h t e r ) Ayati. A y a t i is r e m e m b e r e d as the wife of D h ā t r a n d N i y a t i t h a t of V i d h ā t r . 38. T h e progeny of these two, formerly in the Svāyam­ b h u v a M a n v a n t a r a h a v e already been recounted. Vela (sea­ shore) gave b i r t h to a praiseworthy (lit. u n c e n s u r e d ) d a u g h t e r of Sagara ( t h e o c e a n ) . 39. T h e d a u g h t e r of t h e ocean n a m e d S a v a r n ā b e c a m e t h e wife of P r ā c ī n a b a r h i s . T e n sons were b o r n to S a v a r n ā of Prācinabarhis. 40. All of t h e m were called Pracetasas a n d were masters of t h e science. L o r d Daksa, the son of t h e self-born lord, assumed t h e status of their son. 4 1 . It was on account of the curse of t h e three-eyed lord ( a n d it took place) in t h e Cāksusa M a n v a n t a r a . O n h e a r i n g this, Śārhśapāyani asked S ū t a . 42. " H o w was it t h a t Daksa was born formerly in the C ā k s u s a M a n v a n t a r a , d u e to the curse of Bhava ? Even as we ask, n a r r a t e t h a t to u s . " 43. O n being told thus, S ū t a addressed Ś ā m ś a p ā y a n i a n d told t h e story connected with D a k s a ( a l o n g with) the cause of t h e curse of T r y a m b a k a . Sūta said : 44. " D a k s a h a d eight d a u g h t e r s who have a l r e a d y been m e n t i o n e d by m e . T h e father b r o u g h t t h e m from their (hus­ b a n d s ' ) houses to his own house a n d h o n o u r e d t h e m . 45-46. T h e n , h o n o u r e d very well thus, all of t h e m stayed in their father's house. T h e eldest a m o n g t h e m was n a m e d Satī who was the wife of T r y a m b a k a (Three-eyed god Śiva) Daksa who h a t e d Śiva did not invite t h a t d a u g h t e r . M a h e ś v a r a never bowed down to Daksa. 47-48. T h e son-in-law who was stationed in his own brilliance did not bow down to his father-in-law. On knowing t h a t all h e r sisters had arrived at her father's house, Satī, too went to h e r father's house a l t h o u g h she had not b e e n invited. T h e father accorded to her an h o n o u r inferior to t h a t accorded to other daughters a n d which was disagreeable to her as well.


125

1.2.13.49-61

49-50. T h a t goddess who h a d b e e n infuriated a n d a n n o ­ yed spoke to h e r father : — " O Lord, by according t o m e a wel­ come a n d h o n o u r inferior to t h a t of my younger sisters, O father, by dishonouring me thus, you have d o n e a despicable t h i n g . I am t h e eldest a n d t h e most excellent. It behoves you to honour m e . " 5 1 . On being told thus, D a k s a spoke to h e r w i t h his eyes t u r n e d red : — " T h e s e girls, m y daughters, are m o r e w o r t h y o f respect a n d m o r e excellent t h a n you. 52. O Satī, their h u s b a n d s also a r e highly respected by m e . T h e y a r e highly proficient in t h e Vedas, endowed with good power of p e n a n c e j possessing g r e a t Yogic power a n d very pious. 53-54a. O Satī, all of t h e m are superior to T r y a m b a k a , on account of their good qualities a n d a r e m o r e praiseworthy. T h e y a r e my excellent sons-in-law, viz. : Vasistha, Atri, Pulastya, Ańgiras, P u l a h a , K r a t u , Bhrgu a n d M a r ī c i . 54b-56. Since Śarva always defies a n d disregards m e , I do n o t h o n o u r a n d welcome you. I n d e e d Bhava is antagonistic to m e . " T h u s spoke D a k s a t h e n , on account of his deluded mind, t h e consequence of which was a curse u n t o himself a n d to t h e g r e a t sages w h o were m e n t i o n e d by h i m . On being told father t h u s —

thus

t h e infuriated

goddess said to h e r

5 7 . " S i n c e you insult me a l t h o u g h I am devoid of defects verbally, m e n t a l l y a n d physically, O father, I am a b a n d o n i n g this b o d y b o r n of y o u " . 58. T h e n , being infuriated a n d aggrieved on a c c o u n t of t h a t dishonour, goddess Satī bowed down to t h e self-born lord a n d spoke these w o r d s . 59-60a. " W h e r e v e r I am b o r n again w i t h a brilliant b o d y w h e t h e r l a m n o t b o r n (of a w o m b ) o r w h e t h e r I a m b o m of a righteous person, I should necessarily a t t a i n t h e status of the virtuous wife of t h e self-possessed three-eyed lord alone." 60b-61. Seated there itself she entered t h e Yogic t r a n c e . She united h e r soul ( t o t h e supreme l o r d ) . W i t h h e r m i n d she r e t a i n e d t h e Āgneyi Dhāranā. T h e n t h e fire b o r n of h e r


126

Brahmānda Purāna

soul rose up from all her limbs. K i n d l e d by the wind it reduced her body to ashes. 62. T h e trident-bearing lord h e a r d a b o u t t h a t d e a t h of Satī. Ś a ń k a r a came to know a b o u t their conversation factually. H e n c e , the lord b e c a m e angry with Daksa a n d the sages. Rudra said : 6 3 . " B h ū r l o k a is spoken of as the first one a m o n g all t h e worlds. At the behest of P a r a m e s t h i n (supreme l o r d ) , I shall sustain it always. 64. All the lustrous worlds stand by on being held on to this e a r t h . At his behest, I shall hold them here always. 65. T h e r e is the fourfold classification of the D e v a s . Still they p a r t a k e of food at one place. I will not p a r t a k e of food along with t h e m . Therefore, they will offer it separately unto m e . 66-68. O D a k s a , since, on a c c o u n t of me sinless Sati h a d been insulted, a n d all other d a u g h t e r s were praised along w i t h their husbands, h e n c e when the Vaivasvata M a n v a n t a r a begins, these great sages who are not b o r n of a w o m b will be b o r n again d u r i n g my second Y a j ñ a " . After announcing this to all of them, he cursed Daksa once again, " I n the Cāksusa M a n v a n t a r a when Śukra's Homa is performed by Brahma (?), you will become a h u m a n king in the family of Cāksusa. 69-71. You will be born as the grandson of Prācīnabarhis a n d the son of Pracetas. You will be born by the n a m e of Daksa itself, as the son of M ā r i s ā , the d a u g h t e r of Śākhins (trees). W h e n t h e Vaivasvata M a n v a n t a r a arrives, there also, O evil-minded one, I will cause obstacles in a holy rite e n d o w e d w i t h virtue t h o u g h it m a y be difficult of a c c e s s " . Sūta said : 72. O n h e a r i n g that, Daksa cursed R u d r a once again : — " S i n c e , on a c c o u n t of me you r e n d e r e d evil to t h e sages, the B r ā h m a n a s will n o t worship you along with t h e Devas in the course of a Y a j ñ a .


1.2.13.73-86

127

73. O ruthless one, after offering the A h u t i unto you in the course of their holy rites, they will touch t h e holy w a t e r a g a i n . At the close of the Yuga, they will a b a n d o n heaven a n d will stay here a l o n e " . 74-75. Thereafter, he ( R u d r a ) is not worshipped along with the Devas. He is worshipped separately. T h e r e u p o n , Daksa w h o was t h u s addressed by R u d r a of u n m e a s u r e d , splendour a n d cursed a b a n d o n e d his body origin a t i n g from the self-born lord, a n d was born a m o n g h u m a n beings. 76. After realising t h e lord a n d deity of Yajñas, Daksa, t h e householder, worshipped him with the entire Yajña along with the other deities. 77. After the a d v e n t of the Vaivasvata M a n v a n t a r a , t h e lord of mountains begot of M e n ā t h e goddess U m ā who h a d b e e n the noble lady Satī previously. 78. She who h a d b e e n t h e noble lady Satī previously b e c a m e U m ā afterwards. S h e is t h e wife of Bhava always. Bhava is never a b a n d o n e d by h e r . 79-80. J u s t as t h e noble lady Aditi follows for ever K a ś y a p a , the son of M a r ī c i ; just as goddess Śrī follows N ā r ā y a n a , just as Śacī follows M a g h a v a n (i.e. I n d r a ) , (so also satī follows B h a v a . ) T h e s e following noble ladies never leave off their h u s b a n d s , viz. : Laksmī does not leave off Visnu, U s ā does not leave off Sūrya (the S u n ) nor does A r u n d h a t ī leave of Vasistha. 8 1 . T h e y r e t u r n a n d are b o r n again a n d again i n t h e K a l p a s along w i t h t h e m . T h u s D a k s a was b o r n as t h e son of Pracetas in t h e Cāksusa M a n v a n t a r a . 82. This has been h e a r d by us t h a t on a c c o u n t of t h e curse he was b o r n second t i m e as king, as the son of M ā r i s ā a n d the ten P r a c e t a s . 83-86. T h e seven g r e a t sages, Bhrgu a n d others were born formerly in the first T r e t ā yuga of the Vaivasvata M a n ­ v a n t a r a . T h e y a s s u m e d b o d y from V a r u n a , a t t h a t sacrifice of the great lord.


128

BrahmānAa Purāna

Between Daksa, the Prajāpati, a n d T r i y a m b a k a , the intelligent self-possessed Lord, there was intense enmity con­ tinued from their previous birth. H e n c e intense enmity should never be pursued at the time of personal antagonism. D u e to merits a n d demerits, the living being does not leave off the awareness of what is intensely conceived in the m i n d , though it m a y pertain to t h e previous birth. T h a t should not be pursued by a learned person. 87. T h u s began the story t h a t rids one of sins a n d 1 t h a t pertains to D a k s a . It has been formerly urged for n a r r a ­ tion by you. 88. This story h a d been recounted in the context of 2 n a r r a t i o n of t h e line of the Pitrs. Henceforth, I shall recount the Devas in the same order as that of the Pitts. 89. Formerly, in the beginning of the T r e t ā yuga in the Svāyambhuva M a n v a n t a r a , there were the Devas well-known as Yāmas a n d they were the sons of Y a j ñ a . 3

90. T h e y were the well-reputed sons of Brahma. Since they were Ajas ( u n b o r n ) , they are Ajitas ( u n c o n q u e r e d ) . These are the mental sons of Svāyambhuva. T h e y are n a m e d Śakta. 9 1 . Therefore, these are r e m e m b e r e d as the three groups of Devas (? Yāma, Ajita a n d Ś a k t a ) . T h e C c h a n d a j a s * were thirty-three in t h e creation of S v ā y a m b h u v a . 92-94. T h e twelve Y ā m a s are recounted as follows : Yadu, Yayāti, Vivadha, T r ā s a t a , M a t i , Vibhāsa, Kratu, Prayāti, Viśruta, D y u t i , V ā y a v y a a n d S a m y a m a . Y a d u a n d Yayāti were two Devas ( ?) T h e twelve Ajitas a r e as follows : Asama, Ugradrsti, Sunaya, Śuciśravas, Kevala, V i ś v a r ū p a , Sudaksa, M a d h u p a , Turīya, Indrayuk, Yukta a n d U g r a . 3. 2.

This a n d a number of verses from this chapter are found inVā.P.Ch.3I Daksa, in the 2 n d incarnation, was a descendant of Pitr-gods

V . 4 0 a b o v e ) . H e n c e the story of D a k s a a n d the destruction of his

(vide

sacrifice

by Śiva is inserted here. 3.

From

*

Vā.P.31.5 reads chandogSh 'Chanters of the Sāma-veda'.

this verse, the section of the race of gods (Deva-vamia) begins.


1.2.13.95-107

129

95-96. T h e twelve Śaktas are recounted as follows : J a n i m a n , Viśvadeva, J a v i s t h a , M i t a v ā n , J a r a , V i b h u , V i b h ā v a , Rcika, D u r d i h a , Śruti, G r n ā n a a n d B r h a t . These were Somapāyins in the S v ā y a m b h u v a M a n v a n t a r a . 97. These Ganas were lustrous, valorous a n d very powerful at the outset; lord Viśvabhuk was t h e i r I n d r a . 98-100. T h e Asuras w h o lived t h e n were their cousins a n d kinsmen. T h e Suparnas, Yaksas, G a n d h a r v a s , Piśācas, U r a g a s a n d Rāksasas—these along w i t h the Pitrs (and the D e v a s ) c o n s t i t u t ­ ed t h e eight Devayonis (divine groups), they passed away in the S v ā y a m b h u v a M a n v a n t a r a . T h e y have thousands o f subjects ( p r o g e n y ) . T h e y were richly e n d o w e d with majestic lustre, b e a u t y , longevity a n d physical strength. T h e y are n o t m e n t i o n e d in detail here, lest there should be irrelevancy of context. 101-102. T h e S v ā y a m b h u v a creation should be u n d e r ­ stood by means- of t h e current o n e . 1 T h e past creation is observed t h r o u g h the present one which is Vaivasvata in regard to t h e subjects, deities, sages a n d Pitrs. U n d e r s t a n d t h e seven sages who h a d b e e n existing before. 103. Bhrgu, Ańgiras, Marīci, Pulastya, P u l a h a , K r a t u , Atri a n d Vasistha, these seven (?) were in t h e S v ā y a m b h u v a Manvantara. 104-105. Agnīdhra, Agnibāhu, M e d h ā , M e d h ā t i t h i , Vasu, J y o t i s m ā n , D y u t i m ā n , H a v y a , S a v a n a a n d S a t t r a — t h e s e were t h e ten sons of S v ā y a m b h u v a M a n u . T h e y were extremely m i g h t y with t h e velocity of the wind. T h e y were kings of g r e a t magnificence in the first M a n v a n t a r a . 106-107. T h a t race along with the Asuras, t h e excellent G a n d h a r v a s , t h e Yaksas, t h e U r a g a s , t h e Rāksasas, t h e Piśācas, t h e h u m a n beings, the S u p a r n a s a n d the groups o f Apsaras c a n n o t be r e c o u n t e d in d u e o r d e r even in t h e

1. T h e author regards the first M a n u ( S v ā y a m b h u v a ) a n d the present M a n u ( V a i v a s v a t a ) as more important a n d gives so to say a comparative statement between the events etc. in these two Manvantaras.


130

Brahmānda Purāna

course of hundreds of years. Since their n a m e s a r e m a n y where is t h e limit to their n u m b e r in t h a t family. 108. Those subjects who were in t h e S v ā y a m b h u v a M a n v a n t a r a w i t h t h e n a m e s of the Yugas ( ?) passed a w a y d u e to the great efflux of t i m e in t h e order of Ayanas, years a n d Yugas. The sages asked :J 109. W h o is this lordly K ā l a ( T i m e ) ? W h o is this a n n i hilator of all living beings? Of w h a t is he the source of origin? W h a t is his beginning, w h a t is the intrinsic essence, his soul ? 110. W h a t is his eye? W h a t is t h e form? W h a t a r e r e m e m b e r e d as his limbs? W h a t is his n a m e ? W h a t is his self ? M e n t i o n these factually. Sūta said ; 111. Let t h e real n a t u r e of K ā l a ( T i m e ) be listened t o . 2 After listening, let it be r e t a i n e d in the m i n d . T h e sun is his source a n d t h e period of t h e twinkling of t h e eye is his beginning. He is called Sańkhyācaksus ( H a v i n g t h e n u m b e r for his eyes). 112. T h e d a y a n d night together constitute its form. T h e J\fimesas(moments)are his limbs. T h e year (Samvatsara) is his essence. His n a m e is Kalātmaka (one whose soul is t h e d i g i t ) . 113-115. T h a t lord of subjects is of t h e n a t u r e of the present, future a n d past times. U n d e r s t a n d t h e condition of the K ā l a divided i n t o five, by m e a n s of t h e day, t h e fortnight, the m o n t h , t h e reasons a n d the Ayanas. T h e first (year) is Samvatsara; t h e second one is Parivatsara; the third one is Itfvatsara ; the fourth is Anuvatsara; a n d the fifth a m o n g t h e m is Vatsara. T h a t p e r i o d of time is t e r m e d Yuga.3 1.

T h i s is a n e w section dealing w i t h the nature of K ā l a ( T i m e ) . Cf.

Vā.P.31.22 2.

ff.

.VV.111-112 describe the person of K ā l a , while V . l 13 gives the five

divisions of K ā l a ( t i m e ) viz. the day, the fortnight, the m o n t h , the

season

a n d the Ayana. 3.

K ā l a is n o w identified w i t h Yuga. It is comprised of five years w h i c h

a r e n a m e d as (1) Samvatsara, ( 2 ) Parivatsara, ( 3 ) Id vatsara, ( 4 ) Anuvatsara


1.2.13.116-126

131

116. I shall explain t h e i r principle (Tattva). Even as it is being recounted, u n d e r s t a n d it t h a t w h i c h is .mentioned as Kratu a n d Agni is considered Samvatsara. 117-120. This sun, the son of Aditi, a n d t h e fire of time is Parivatsara. Soma (the moon) which is of the n a t u r e of t h e essence of waters, which has two movements, t h e b r i g h t a n d the d a r k ones (i.e. t h e bright half a n d t h e d a r k half of the m o n t h ) is Idvatsara a n d has been decisively d e t e r m i n e d so in the Purānas. He w h o purifies the worlds with his seven times seven bodies (i.e. 49 M a r u t s ) ; he w h o blows favourable to t h e w o r l d — t h a t wind is Anuvatsara. He w h o was b o r n of t h e Ahamkāra (ego) of B r a h m a as Udagrudra*—that blue-red (complexioned) R u d r a should be known as their Vatsara. I shall explain his Satattva (essential n a t u r e ) ; u n d e r s t a n d it even as it is being r e c o u n t e d . 121. D u e to the c o n t a c t of limbs a n d m i n o r limbs, t h e K ā l ā t m a n (the soul of time) is t h e great-grandfather. He is t h e lord and source of origin of R k , Yajus a n d S ā m a n ; he is t h e m a s t e r of t h e five ( i . e . day, fortnight e t c . ) . 122-126. He is Agni, Y a m a , K ā l a , S a m b h ū t i a n d Prajā­ p a t i . He is source of origin of t h e sun. He is m e n t i o n e d as Samvatsara by learned m e n . T h e sun should be known as Parivatsara. He is the source of origin of t h e divisions of K ā l a ( T i m e ) , of t h e m o n t h s , seasons a n d t h e t w o Ayanas; of t h e p l a n e t s , stars, chillness, h e a t , r a i n , span of life a n d holy rites; t h e B h ā s k a r a (sun) is t h e source of origin of the smaller divisions a n d t h e d a y s ; he is Vaikārika ( a n evolute ?), of kindly disposition, the son of B r a h m a a n d the L o r d protector of subjects. He is one. He is (in a w a y ) not o n e . He is day, m o n t h , season a n d g r a n d f a t h e r . He is Aditya, Savitr,

and ( 5 ) Vatsara. T h e following verses describe the " p r i n c i p l e " as to h o w a n d w h y ( 1 ) Kratu-Agni, (2) T h e Sun-god, ( 3 ) S o m a or the M o o n - g o d with Pitrs, ( 4 ) T h e Wind-god and (5) Rudra should be associated with these five years. * U d a g r u d r a = U d a g r a Rudra. Or we m a y adopt the reading of Vā.P.31.32a. ahankārād rudan rudrah / ' R u d r a w h o roared out of haughtiness a n d conceit'.


132

BrahmSnda Purāna

Bhānu, J ī v a n a (Enlivener) a n d h o n o u r e d by B r a h m a . He is the Prabhava (source of b i r t h ) a n d Apyaya ( e n d or t h a t in which they merge themselves at d e a t h ) o f all living beings. Therefore, Bhāskara the presiding deity of the T ā r ā s (constellations), should be known as the second Parivatsara. 127-129. Since Soma (the m o o n god) is the lord of all medicinal herbs, since he is the grandfather, since he is t h e enlivener of all living beings, since he is the lord, causing Toga (acquisition of w h a t is n o t a t t a i n e d ) a n d Ksema (preservation of w h a t is a c q u i r e d ) ; since he always looks after a n d upholds the universe by m e a n s of his r a y s ; since he is the source of origin of the Tithis (days of the l u n a r fortnight), j u n c t i o n s of Parvans, full m o o n a n d t h e N e w m o o n ; since he causes the n i g h t ; since he is the Prajāpati w i t h n e c t a r i n e soul—for all these reasons S o m a ( M o o n ) w i t h t h e Pitrs is r e m e m b e r e d as Idvatsara. F o r the following reasons V ā y u (the W i n d g o d ) is Anuvatsara : 130. In t h e world, he is the propeller of all activities of the living beings t h r o u g h the five types of vital winds viz. : Prāna, Apāna, Samāna, Vyāna, and U d ā n a . 131. He causes the unified a n d simultaneous activities of t h e five units of t h e physical body. viz. : t h e sense organs, the m i n d , t h e intellect, t h e m e m o r y a n d t h e strength. 132. He is t h e soul of a l l ; he is the lord of all worlds t h r o u g h the (spatial winds) Avaha, P r a v a h a e t c . He exists t h r o u g h his seven times seven bodies (known as M a r u t s ) t h a t r e n d e r h e l p t o others. 133-134. He is the m a k e r of the destiny of all living beings; he is t h e Prabhañjana ( v i o l e n t gust of wind a l s o ) ; he perpetually causes t h e well-being of all living beings; he is the source of origin of fire, waters, e a r t h , t h e sun a n d t h e m o o n ; t h e wind is P r a j ā p a t i : he is the soul of all t h e worlds; he is the great grandfather a n d he causes days a n d nights. H e n c e , it is t h a t .Vāyu ( w i n d g o d ) is Anuvatsara. 135. All these four ( i . e . K ā l a , the sun, the M o o n a n d the wind g o d ) a r e lords of subjects; they a r e b o r n of t h e flanks ( o f B r a h m a ) ; they a r e t h e fathers of all the worlds. T h e y have b e e n glorified as the souls of the worlds.


1.2.13.136-146 136-137. Bhava c a m e o u t crying, t h r o u g h t h e m o u t h of - £ r a h m ā who was m e d i t a t i n g . T h e g r e a t lord is mentioned (in t h e Vedas)~bf Rsi ( s a g e ) , Vipra ( B r ā h m a n a ) , the soul of t h e living beings, the g r e a t grandfather, the lord of all living beings a n d t h e Pranava ( O m ) . It is t h r o u g h t h e p e n e t r a t i o n of t h e Ātman (soul) t h a t t h e limbs a n d m i n o r limbs of t h e living beings take shape. 138-139. , R u d r a who causes Unmāda (Madness) a n d (at the same time) blesses, is called Vatsara. T h u s t h e sun, t h e m o o n , t h e fire, the wind a n d R u d r a a r e all identifiers with Yuga ( ? ) . L o r d R u d r a who is the soul of K ā l a is always the cause of annihilation. L o r d R u d r a entered this universe by m e a n s of his own brilliance. 140-141. D u e to t h e contact with t h e soul t h a t is t h e support, by means of the bodies a n d t h e appellations^(ne enters t h e u n i v e r s e ) . Therefore, t h r o u g h his own vitality he has t h e status of Deva, Pitr a n d K ā l a a n d this status blesses t h e worlds. It is t h e greatest. So R u d r a is always worshipped by those w h o are t h e knowers of t h a t ( R u d r a ?) 142-144. Since the lord is the master of the lords of sub­ jects, since he is Prajāpati, since he is t h e conceiverof all living beings, since Nilalohita is t h e soul of all, since R u d r a resuscit­ ates the fading a n d declining medicinal herbs a g a i n a n d a g a i n ; since at the time when medicinal herbs decline, t h e lord is worshipped by t h e Devas, t h e leader of w h o m is Prajāpati a n d w h o seek fruits eagerly desired by t h e m — ( H e is worshipped by offering P u r o d ā ś a in three K a p ā l a s ) otherwise called T h r e e 1 A m b a k a s — S o t h e lord is called Tryambaka. 145. T h e three Vedic metres viz. : Gāyatrl, T r i s t u b h and Jagatī are remembered by the name Tryambakas. O u t of love they a r e t h e sources of origin of t h e vegltable kingdom. 146. T h e P u r o d ā ś a offering consecrated by t h e repeti­ tion of those three metrical verses united into one is called Trikapsla because it has three means a n d it is instilled with their virility in three ways. 1. This is a repetition of the explanation of the identification of Tryam­ baka and the three Kapālas (pot-sherds) on which Purodāśa is offered.


Brahman (la Purāna

134

147. H e n c e t h a t P u r o d ā ś a is Tryambaka. Therefore, he ( t h e lord R u d r a ) is also declared as Tryambaka. T h u s the Yuga is m e n t i o n e d by learned m e n as one t h a t consists of five years. 148. T h e Samvatsara t h a t has been mentioned by Brāh­ m a n a s as one having five selves became a unit of six selves 1 with the names of Madhu (spring) a n d other seasons. 149-151. T h e five Ārtavas are the sons of the Rtus. T h u s the creation is recounted briefly. T h u s the u n a t t a c h e d K ā l a with m a n y measures a n d units removes the lives of living beings a n d runs like the rapidly speeding c u r r e n t of water. T h e progeny of these, c a n n o t be e n u m e r a t e d authorita­ tively, because they a r e i n n u m e r a b l e . T h e group of sons- a n d grandsons is endless. Glorifying this family of great lords of subjects of holy rites a n d meritorious fame, one shall achieve great Siddhi (spi­ ritual a t t a c h m e n t ) .

CHAPTER FOURTEEN The race of Priyavrata t. Description of Continents and their Sub-Divisions Sūta said : 1. In all the M a n v a n t a r a s of the past a n d the all the subjects a r e b o r n w i t h similar identification in to names a n d forms. 2 1.

T h e year, said to be of five souls (vide V . l 1 3 ) , is again divided into

six divisions according to season 2.

future, regard

(rtus).

T h i s is the m a i n thesis of the Purāna. T h i s chapter deals with Puranic

cosmography. It associates the names of continents

(dvtpas)

with the descen­

dants of S v ā y a m b h u v a M a n u . For similar description vide A . P . I 0 7 , K P . I . 4 0 Bh. P.V 16.1-26, M t . P . 1 1 2 ,

121,

122.


135

1.2.14.2-9

2. T h e D e v a s w h o are of eight types are t h e overlords in t h a t M a n v a n t a r a . T h e sages a n d the M a n u s — a l l of t h e m serve the same purpose. 3. T h e creation of the great sages was already r e c o u n t e d . Now u n d e r s t a n d t h e race of Svāyambhuva M a n u , t h a t is being r e c o u n t e d in detail a n d in d u e order. 4-5. Svāyambhuva M a n u h a d ten grandsons w h o were similar to him. T h e entire e a r t h consisting of seven continents was colonised by them along with its towns, oceans a n d mines in every sub-continent in the first T r e t ā yuga of the Svāyam­ bhuva Manvantara. 6. T h i s (Earth) was colonised by those sons of Priya­ v r a t a , the grandson of S v ā y a m b h u v a ( M a n u ) w h o were endow­ ed with progeny, strength a n d p e n a n c e . 7. K ā m y ā t h a t extremely fortunate d a u g h t e r of K a r d a m a the P r a j ā p a t i , bore u n t o Priyavrata heroic sons endowed with their own progeny. 1 8-9. She gave b i r t h to two daughters, viz. : S a m r ā t a n d Kuksi. Both of t h e m were splendid. She gave b i r t h to ten sons also. T h e brothers of those two d a u g h t e r s were ten in n u m b e r , valorous a n d similar to the Prajāpatis. T h e y were Agnīdhra, Agnibāhu, M e d h a s , M e d h ā t i t h i , Vasu (later mentioned as Vapusmān), Jyotismān, Dyutimān, Havya, Savana a n d Sattra.

1.

T h e race of Priyavrata :

N a m e s of Priyavrata's Sons

Names

of

the

kingdom . 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.

Agnidhra Agnibāhu Medhas Medhātithi Vasu (Vapusmān) Jyotismān Dyutimān Havya Savana Sattra

Jambū Plaksa Śālmala Kuśa Krauñca Śāka

Puskara

Dvipa

assigned

as


136

Brahmānda Purāna

10. Priyavrata crowned seven of t h e m in seven-continents as kings with d u e religious rites. U n d e r s t a n d t h e m as well as those continents. 11. He m a d e t h e excessively powerful Agnldhra, the lord of J a m b ū d v ī p a . M e d h ā t i t h i was m a d e by h i m the lord of Plaksadvīpa. 12. He crowned V a p u s m ā n (Earlier mentioned as V a s u ) as king in the Śālmala dvīpa. T h e lord m a d e J y o t i s m ā n , the king in K u ś a dvīpa. dvīpa;

13. He coronated D y u t i m ā n as the king in K r a u ñ c a Priyavrata m a d e H a v y a the lord of Śāka dvīpa.

14-17. T h e lord m a d e Savana the overlord of Puskara. In P u s k a r a dvīpa, Savana h a d two sons, viz. : M a h ā v ī t a a n d D h ā t a k i . These two sons were the most excellent ones t h a t parents could desire. In accordance with t h e n a m e of t h a t noble soul, his sub-continent is r e m e m b e r e d as M a h ā v ī t a varsa. In accordance with the n a m e of D h ā t a k i , his sub-conti­ n e n t is called D h ā t a k ī k h a n d a . H a v y a ( t h e lord of Śākadvīpa) begot seven sons, rulers of Sākadvipa. T h e y were, viz. : J a l a d a , K u m ā r a , Sukumāra, M a n ī v a k a , K u s u m o t t a r a , M o d ā k a a n d the seventh one Mahādruma. 18-21 - 1 T h e first sub-continent of J a l a d a is called J a l a d a . T h e second sub-continent of K u m ā r a is glorified as K a u m ā r a . T h e t h i r d one S u k u m ā r a is remembered as the sub-conti­ n e n t of S u k u m ā r a . T h e fourth one is called Manīvaka, the sub-continent of M a n ī v a . T h e fifth sub-continent K u s u m o t t a r a is t h a t of K u s u m o ­ t t a r a . M o d ā k a the sixth sub-continent is glorified as that of Modāka. T h e seventh sub-continent is M a h ā d r u m a in accordance with t h e n a m e of M a h ā d r u m a . All those seven sub-continents there are called after their names. 22-23. 1.

T h e r e were seven

sons b o r n of D y u t i m ā n , the

V V . 18-22. T h e seven sub-divisions of Śākadvipa are n a m e d after

the seven sons of H a v y a .


1.2.14.24-34

137

lord of K r a u ñ c a d v ī p a 1 viz. : K u ś a l a , Manonuga, Usna, P ā v a n a , A n d h a k ā r a k a , M u n i a n d D u n d u b h i . These were t h e sons of D y u t i m ā n . T h e y have after their own names, the splen­ did sub-continents situated in t h e K r a u ñ c a d v ī p a . 24-26. T h e land of K u ś a l a n a m e d K a u ś a l a was very famous. M a n o n u g a is r e m e m b e r e d as the l a n d of M a n o n u g a . U s n a is remembered as the land of U s n a a n d P ā v a n a t h a t of P ā v a n a . T h a t land of A n d h a k ā r a is glorified as A n d h a k ā r a . M a u n i d e ś a was the land of M u n i a n d D u n d u b h i is r e m e m b e r e d as the land of D u n d u b h i . These seven lands in the K r a u ñ c a d v ī p a were r a d i a n t ones. 27-30. J y o t i s m ā n too in the K u ś a d v ī p a h a d seven very powerful sons 2 viz. : Udbhijja, V e n u m ā n , V a i r a t h a , L a v a n a , D h r t i , the sixth one P r a b h ā k a r a a n d the seventh one r e m e m ­ bered as K a p i l a . T h e first sub-continent is called U d b h i j j a ; the second sub-continent was V e n u m a n d a l a ; the third sub-continent was V a i r a t h ā k ā r a ; t h e fourth sub-continent is r e m e m b e r e d as L a v a n a ; the fifth sub-continent was D h r t i m a t ; t h e sixth sub­ c o n t i n e n t was P r a b h ā k a r a ; the seventh sub-continent n a m e d K a p i l a was glorified as t h a t of K a p i l a . T h e i r lands in the K u ś a d v ī p a h a v e the same names as they. 3 1 . T h e L o r d s of Ś ā l m a l a were (as if) embellished with subjects endowed w i t h t h e disciplined conduct of life pertain­ ing to the various A ś r a m a s (stages of life). T h e y were t h e seven sons of V a p u s m ā n . 3 32. T h e y were :—Śveta, H a r i t a , J ī m ū t a Rohita, V a i d y u t a , M ā n a s a a n d S u p r a b h a , the seventh one. 33-34. Śveta was the land of Śveta; S u h a r i t a was t h a t of H a r i t a ; J ī m ū t a was the land of J ī m ū t a a n d R o h i t a t h a t of R o h i t a . V a i d y u t a was the land of V a i d y u t a a n d M ā n a s a t h a t 1.

VV.22-26

enumerate seven sub-divisions of Krauñcadvīpa

which

are n a m e d after the seven sons of Dyutimān. 2.

W . 2 7 - 3 0 . T h e seven sub-divisions of K u ś a d v i p a are n a m e d after

the seven sons of Jyotismān, king of Kuśadvipa. 3.

T h e seven sons of V a p u s m ā n mentioned in the next verse have given

their names to the Varsas or sub-continents they headed.


138

Brahmānda Purāna.

of M ā n a s a . S u p r a b h a was the land of S u p r a b h a . All these seven were t h e protectors of the lands. 35. I shall r e c o u n t Plaksadvīpa after the J a m b ū d v ī p a . T h e seven sons of M e d h ā t i t h i were the kings ruling over Plaksadvīpa. 36-3 7 1 . These were the sons of M e d h ā t i t h i who are men­ tioned ( a s follows :) T h e eldest was n a m e d Ś ā n t a b h a y a ; the second is r e m e m b e r e d as Śiśira: Sukhodaya was the t h i r d ; t h e fourth is called N a n d a ; Śiva was the fifth a m o n g t h e m ; K s e m a k a is called sixth, a n d D h r u v a should be known as the seventh. 38-43. Those seven Varsas (sub-continents) are known after t h e n a m e s of those seven (sons). Therefore the following (are well k n o w n ) , viz. : Ś ā n t a b h a y a , Śiśira, Sukhodaya, A n a n d a , Śiva, K s e m a k a a n d D h r u v a . Those Varsas were all equal ( t o one a n o t h e r ) . T h e y were colonized in t h e different parts formerly in t h e S v ā y a m b h u v a M a n v a n t a r a by those sons of M e d h ā t i t h i who were kings a n d rulers of Plaksadvīpa. T h e subjects in t h e Plaksadvīpa were m a d e to closely a d h e r e to t h e disciplined conduct of life of the various castes a n d stages of life. It is the D h a r m a 2 (piety, virtue) t h a t is t h e criterion for t h e classification of t h e V a r n a s a n d Aśramas in the five conti­ nents beginning w i t h Plaksadvīpa a n d ending with Śākadvīpa ( i . e . Plaksa, Śālmala, K u ś a , K r a u ñ c a and Ś ā k a ) . Happiness, span of life, beauty, strength a n d D h a r m a (Virtue) are remem­ bered to be c o m m o n to all perpetually, in these five Dvīpas. Plaksadvīpa has been described. U n d e r s t a n d t h e J a m b ū d v ī p a . 44. P r i y a v r a t a installed Agnīdhra, the extremely power­ ful son of K ā m y ā a n d his eldest successor as the king and over­ lord of J a m b ū d v ī p a .

1.

VV.36-40 enumerate

kings of seven

seven sons of king Medhātithi,

Varsas—sub-continents—which

were

named

w h o became after

their

founder-kings. 2.

W . 4 1 - 4 3 describe the c o m m o n features of the five continents from.

Plaksa to Śākadvipa.


139

1.2.14.45-58 1

45-47. N i n e sons were b o r n to h i m . T h e y were on a p a r w i t h the Prajāpatis. T h e eldest was well known as N ā b h i . K i m p u r u s a was h i s younger b r o t h e r . Harivarsa was the third a n d the fourth was I l ā v r t a . R a m y a was t h e fifth son, H i r a n v ā n is m e n t i o n e d as his sixth son. K u r u was the seventh a m o n g t h e m . B h a d r ā ś v a is r e m e m b e r e d as the eighth a n d the n i n t h was K e t u m ā l a . U n d e r s t a n d their realms. 48-52 T h e father gave N ā b h i t h e southern V a r s a n a m e d H i m a ; h e gave K i m p u r u s a t h a t Varsa, called H e m a k ū t a . H e gave H a r i v a r s a t h a t sub-continent which is remembered as N a i s a d h a . He gave I l ā v r t a the sub-continent t h a t was in the m i d d l e of Sumeru. T h e father gave R a m y a , the sub-continent t h a t is r e m e m b e r e d as N ī l a . T h e sub-continent Śveta t h a t was situated to t h e n o r t h of it was given by the father to H i r a n v ā n . He gave to K u r u the sub-continent t h a t was to t h e n o r t h of Śrñgavān. Similarly, he allotted to Bhadrāśva the sub-continent M ā l y a v a t . H e assigned the sub-continent G a n d h a m ā d a n a t o K e t u m ā l a . T h u s these nine sub-continents have b e e n n a r r a t e d by me, part by part. 53. Agnīdhra crowned those sons in d u e o r d e r in those sub-continents. Thereafter, t h a t pious-souled one b e c a m e enga­ ged in p e n a n c e . 54. T h u s the entire e a r t h consisting of the seven c o n t i ­ nents was colonized by the seven sons of Priyavrata, who w e r e the grandsons of S v ā y a m b h u v a M a n u . 55. T h u s , when annihilation takes place, these seven settlements (continents) a r e created again a n d a g a i n b y t h e kings in all the seven sub-continents. 56-58. This is the n a t u r e nents a n d the K a l p a s .

of colonization of the conti­

W i t h regard to t h e eight sub-continents beginning w i t h t h a t of K i m p u r u s a (the following things should be n o t e d ) . T h e i r a t t a i n m e n t is n a t u r a l . W i t h o u t effort they a r e generally h a p p y . T h e r e s no annihilation or calamity in t h e m . T h e r e is 1. W . 4 5 - 5 2 enumerate the sub-continents in Jambūdvīpa. For the identification of mountains vide Ch. 1 Footnotes on p p . 11, 12.


140

Brahmānda Purāna

no fear from old age a n d d e a t h . T h e r e is neither D h a r m a (Virtue) n o r A d h a r m a (evil) a m o n g t h e m . T h e r e is no classi­ fication of people as the excellent, t h e middling and the base. In all those eight K s e t r a s (i.e. Varsas, sub-continents) there is no Tugāvasthā ( t h e state of Y u g a s ) . 59-61. I shall recount t h e procreation by N ā b h i in the sub-continent called H i m a . U n d e r s t a n d it. N ā b h i begot a highly lustrous son, of Meru-Devī. He was R s a b h a , 1 the most excellent of all kings. He was the eldest of all Ksatriyas. Heroic B h a r a t a was born of R s a b h a . He was t h e eldest of h u n d r e d sons. R s a b h a crowned his son a n d engaged himself in M a h ā pravrajyā ( t h e great m i g r a t i o n of renunciation i.e. j o u r n e y or pilgrimage till d e a t h ) . He allotted the southern sub-continent named Hima to Bharata. 62-63. H e n c e learned m e n know this sub-continent as B h ā r a t a v a r s a 2 after his n a m e . Bharata's son was a virtuous scholar n a m e d S u m a t i . B h a r a t a crowned h i m in t h a t realm. After transferring the royal glory to his son t h e king entered t h e forest. 64. His son Tejasa was a lord of the subjects a n d con­ q u e r o r of enemies. T h e great scholar, I n d r a d y u m n a is remem­ bered as Tejasa's son. 65-66. P a r a m e s t h i n , his son, was b o r n after his d e a t h a n d his son was P r a t i h ā r a and t h e family came to be known after his n a m e . In his family a son well known as P r a t i h a r t r was b o r n . To t h a t intelligent P r a t i h a r t r , son U n n e t r was b o r n . B h ū m a n is. r e m e m b e r e d as his son. 67. His son was U d g ī t h a . Prastāvi was was t h e son Prastāvi a n d P r t h u was his son.

his

son. Vibhu

68. P r t h u ' s son was N a k t a . G a y a was N a k t a ' s son. N a r a was born as t h e son of G a y a a n d V i r ā t was the son of N a r a . 69. M a h ā v ī r y a was the son of Virāt. D h ī m a n . M a h ā n was the son of Dfaīman and t h e son of M a h ā n . 1.

He is regarded as the first Tirthańkara by Jains.

His son Bhauvana

was was

He is mentioned

in the Bh.P. V.Chs. 4, 5 and in V P . 11.1-28. 2. varsa.

J a i n a traditipn supports this theory regardin

the n a m e of Bhārata­


1.2.14.70-75—15.1-3

141

70. T v a s t r w a s the son of B h a u v a n a . His son was Virajas. Rajas was the son of Nirajas a n d Śatajit was the son of Rajas. 7 1 . He h a d h u n d r e d sons. All of t h e m were kings. T h e i m p o r t a n t one a m o n g them was Viśvajyotis. It is t h r o u g h t h e m , t h a t these subjects flourished. 72. This B h ā r a t a sub continent was m a r k e d by t h e m as one w i t h seven islands. Formerly, this Bhāratī l a n d was enjoyed by those b o r n of their family. 73-75. E a c h set of Yugas consists of K r t a , T r e t ā e t c . ( T h e M a n v a n t a r a consists of) such seventy-one sets of Yugas. People belonging to their family h a d b e e n kings t h r o u g h o u t the past Yugas in the Svāyambhuva M a n v a n t a r a . T h e y were h u n d r e d s a n d thousands. T h u s is the creation (race) of S v ā y m b h u v a by which this universe is filled w i t h sages, deities, Pitrs, G a n d h a r v a s , Rāksa­ sas, Yaksas, Bhūtas, Piśācas, h u m a n beings, animals a n d birds. T h i s is said to be their c r e a t i o n . It undergoes c h a n g e a l o n g with the Y u g a s .

CHAPTER FIFTEEN The length and extent of the Earth : Description of Jambūdvlpa. Sūta said : 1-3. On h e a r i n g a b o u t the settlement of the subjects t h u s , Ś ā m ś a p ā y a n i asked Sūta a b o u t the length a n d extent of t h e E a r t h * a s i t h a d been d e t e r m i n e d — " H o w m a n y continents a r e there ? H o w m a n y oceans ? H o w m a n y mountains are proclaim­ ed ? H o w m a n y are the Varsas (sub-continents) ? W h a t are the *

Vā.P.34.1b reads

Prthivyodadhivistaram. H e n c e

: Prthivyāyima-vistarau. It is better than B d . P . ' s Vā.P.

reading

accepted.


Brahmānda Purāna

142

rivers declared therein ? M e n t i o n all these things to us in detail a n d factually such as the m a g n i t u d e of the great elements, t h e Lokāloka m o u n t a i n , the transits, the extent and the move­ m e n t s of the m o o n as well as the sun. Sūta said : 4-6. O ! I shall recount to you the length a n d extent of t h e e a r t h , the n u m b e r of the oceans a n d the n u m b e r and extent of the islands. T h e r e are thousands of different islands t h a t are included in the seven continents. T h e y c a n n o t be recounted in d u e order, because this world is studded a n d constantly (sur­ rounded by t h e m ) . I shall recount the seven continents along w i t h the moon, the sun a n d the planets. 7-8a. M e n m e n t i o n their m a g n i t u d e s by m e a n s of guess alone. O n e c a n n o t arrive by means of guess alone, at those beings (or things) which c a n n o t be even p o n d e r e d u p o n . T h a t which is b e y o n d n a t u r e is called Acintya ( t h a t which c a n n o t be even pondered u p o n ) . 8b-10. I shall r e c o u n t the j a m b ū d v ī p a as exists actually, consisting of nine V a r s a s . U n d e r s t a n d it t h r o u g h its extent a n d g i r t h in terms of Yojanas. It is m o r e t h a n a h u n d r e d thousand Yojanas all r o u n d . It is full of different rural countries and different kinds of splendid cities. It is filled w i t h Siddhas a n d C ā r a n a s a n d is embellished w i t h m o u n t a i n s . 11. ( I t is full of mountains) endowed with all kinds of minerals originating from clusters of rocks. It is full of rivers flowing from m o u n t a i n s . 12. J a m b ū d v ī p a is immense a n d glorious with huge zones all r o u n d . It is encircled by nine worlds t h a t evolve a n u m b e r of living beings. 13. It is surrounded on all sides by the briny sea the e x t e n t of which is e q u a l to t h a t of J a m b ū d v ī p a itself. 14.* T h e following are the six Varsaparvatas1 ( M o u n t a i n s *

After verse 14

there

read

verse

No.28

which

tells:

the

six

mountains are N i l a , N i s a d h a , Śveta, H e m a k ū t a , H i m a v ā n and Śrńgavān. 1.

T h e Varsa-parvatas are the mountains

(mountain-chains) which

d i v i d e o n e V a r s a (sub-continent) from another. T h u s they m a y be regarded as boundary mountains. T h e names and other characteristics are described in the following verses. T h e i r geographical location is given in supra C h . l Footnotes on pp. 11, 12.


1.2.15.15-24

143

•dividing t h e sub-continents). T h e y have good ridges. On either side they merge i n t o the Eastern a n d Western oceans. 15. H i m a v ā n is practically covered w i t h snow. H e m a k ū t a is full of Heman (gold). T h e great m o u n t a i n N i s a d h a is equally pleasant in all t h e seasons. 16. M e r u is r e m e m b e r e d as t h e most beautiful. 1 It has four colours (like four castes—Varnas). It is golden. On its top its e x t e n t is thirtytwo thousand Yojanas. 17. It is circular in shape. It is symmetrical a n d very lofty. It is endowed with t h e qualities of P r a j ā p a t i . It has different colours at its sides. 18. It is originated from the umbilical cord of B r a h m a born of t h e unmanifest one. In the east it is white in colour. H e n c e , it is on a p a r with the B r ā h m a n a s . 19. Its n o r t h e r n side has a n a t u r a l red colour. H e n c e , t h e Ksatriya-hood of M e r u on account of various reasons a n d purposes. ( ? ) 20-21. In t h e southern side it is yellow. So its Vaiśyatva (state of being a Vaiśya) is evident. In ^he West it is like the Bhrńgapatra (A kind of leaf black in colour) all r o u n d . H e n c e it has t h e state of Śūdra. T h u s t h e colours a r e r e c o u n t e d (as well as t h e castes). Its n a t u r e t h r o u g h colour a n d m a g n i t u d e has been explained. 22. T h e Nīla m o u n t a i n is full of sapphires (has t h a t c o l o u r ) . T h e Śveta is white a n d full of gold. Ś r ń g a v ā n has t h e colour of the peacock's tail a n d it is full of gold. 23. All these lordly m o u n t a i n s are frequented by t h e Siddhas a n d C ā r a n a s . T h e i r i n t e r n a l d i a m e t e r is said to be n i n e t h o u s a n d Yojanas. 24. T h e sub-continent of I l ā v r t a is in the middle of M a h ā m e r u . Its extent all a r o u n d is thus n i n e t h o u s a n d Yojanas. 1.

T h e r e is a consensus a m o n g Purānas like K P . , M t . P . , M k . P . , V ā . P . ,

a n d Bd.P. about the shape and size of M e r u . M. Ali points out that ancient Persians, Greeks, Chinese, Jews, a n d Arabs repeat of M e r u . After discussing the

problem,

he

comes

the traditional nodality to

the

conclusion

that

M t . M e r u is identical w i t h the Pamirs, in central Asia. H i s diagrammatic representation of the J a m b ū d v i p a a n d its cross-section (Fig.4) on p.65 of Geog. of the Purānas is interesting.


144

Brahmāngīa Purāna

25. In its m i d d l e is the M a h ā m e r u like a smokeless fire. T h e southern side of M e r u is like the m i d d l e of t h e altar. I t s u p p e r half is its u p p e r surface. 26. T h e Varsa-Parvatas which b e l o n g to the six are two thousand Yojanas in extent a n d in h e i g h t .

Varsas

27-31a. T h e i r length is said to be in a c c o r d a n c e with t h e extent of J a m b ū d v ī p a . T h e two m o u n t a i n s , (Nīla a n d Nisa­ dha) a r e h u n d r e d t h o u s a n d Yojanas long. T h e other four m o u n t a i n s are shorter t h a n these. T h e m o u n t a i n s Śveta a n d H e m a k ū t a a r e each ninety thousand Yojanas long. T h e m o u n ­ tains H i m a v ā n a n d Śrńgavān a r e each eighty t h o u s a n d Yojanas long. T h e r e a r e J a n a p a d a s (territories or counties) in between t h e m . T h e Varsas are seven in n u m b e r . T h e y are encircled by m o u n t a i n s t h a t are difficult to cross on account of steep precipices. T h e y a r e criss-crossed w i t h different kinds of rivers. It was impossible to travel from one V a r s a to a n o t h e r (lit. they were m u t u a l l y u n a p p r o a c h a b l e ) . 31b. Animals of different kinds live in t h e m . T h i s H a i m a v a t a sub-continent is well k n o w n by the n a m e B h ā r a t a . 32-34. H e m a k ū t a is beyond this. It is r e m e m b e r e d by the name Kimpurusa. Naisadha sub-continent is beyond H e m a k ū t a a n d it is called H a r i v a r s a . I l ā v r t a is beyond H a r i ­ v a r s a (and in the m i d d l e ) of M e r u . Nīla is beyond I l ā v r t a a n d it wellknown by t h e n a m e R a m y a k a . Śveta is beyond R a m y a k a a n d it is wellknown as H i r a n m a y a . T h e sub-conti­ n e n t Ś r ń g a v a t is beyond H i r a n m a y a a n d it is remembered as Kuru. 35. T h e two sub-continents in the south a n d t h e n o r t h should be k n o w n as situated in the form of a bow. F o u r others a r e stationed lengthwise a n d the m i d d l e one is 1 Ilāvrta. 36.

1.

V e d y a r d h a which is on

the hitherside of

Nisadha,

This Purāna supports the Sapta-dvipī (seven-continent) theory about

the earth. T h e distribution of the c o n t i n e n t s m a y be represented as under.


1.2.15.37-41

145

is known as the southern V e d y a r d h a a n d t h a t which beyond the Nllavān is the n o r t h e r n V e d y a r d h a . 1 37. In the southern side of V e d y a r d h a , there are three Varsas and on the n o r t h e r n side of V e d y a r d h a also there a r e three Varsas. M e r u should be known as existing in between t h e m a n d Ilāvrta is in the m i d d l e of M e r u . 38. To the south of the Nīla a n d to the n o r t h of Nisa­ d h a , there is a great m o u n t a i n stretching to the n o r t h n a m e d Mālyavān.2 39. It stretches a thousand Yojanas from N ī l a to N i s a ­ d h a . It is glorified as one, thirtyfour thousand Yojanas in extension. 40. T h e m o u n t a i n G a n d h a m ā d a n a should b e known a s situated to its west. In l e n g t h a n d extent it is reputed to be like M ā l y a v ā n . 4 1 . M e r u , the golden m o u n t a i n , is in the m i d d l e of t w o circles. T h a t golden m o u n t a i n has four colours. It is s y m m e t r i ­ cal a n d very lofty. North:

( U t t a r a ) Kuru V a r s a Śrńgavān M t . H i r a n m a y a Varsa Śveta M t . R a m y a k a Varsa Nīla M t . I I I

Ilāvrta Varsa Meru Mt. Ilāvrta V a r s a

Nisadha Mt. Hart V a r s a Hemakūta Mt. Kimpurusa V a r s a Himavān (Himalaya) Mt. South Bhārata or H a i m a v a t a V a r s a D o e s the bowlike formation of these Varsas suggest the spherical shape of the earth ? 1.

Galled V e y a d d h a in J a i n

2.

Purānas give different locations of G a n d h a m ā d a n a and M ā l y a v ā n .

(Ardha M ā g a d h ! ) canon.

So do modern scholars, as the n a m e s of extra-Indian mountains were adopted by the Indo-Aryans as they penetrated d e e p in the Indian Peninsula. T h u s M ā l y a v ā n d u e t o its association w i t h G a n d h a m ā d a n a a n d M e r u should b e identified with the Sarikol range, as G a n d h a m ā d a n a was the northern ridge of the great Hindukush arch with its northern extension, the Khwaja

Maham-

mad. T h e southern ridge of Hindukush is N i s a d h a which merged into North­ ern Karakorum a n d K u n l u n ( M . Ali.—Geog. of Purārias, p p .

58-59).


146

^^

Brahmānda Purāna

42. T h e brilliant Sumeru shines, established like a king. It has t h e colour a n d brilliance of t h e m i d d a y sun. It is re­ fulgent like t h e smokeless fire. 4 3 . It is eightyfour thousand Yojanas high. It has en­ tered (down the ground level) sixteen thousand Yojanas. Its w i d t h is also sixteen thousand Yojanas. 44. Since it is stationed like a p l a t t e r its w i d t h on t h e t o p is thirty two t h o u s a n d Yojanas. Its girth all r o u n d is three times its w i d t h . 45-47. W h e n t h e mass is circular t h e reckoning is trian­ gular (?) (According to the t r i a n g u l a r reckoning) its girth all r o u n d is fortyeight thousand Yojanas. Now t h e m a g n i t u d e is recounted in t h e triangular reckoning. According to the qua­ d r a n g u l a r reckoning (?) t h e girth all r o u n d is laid down as sixtyfour thousand Yojanas. T h a t m o u n t a i n is highly divine a n d e q u i p p e d with divine medicinal herbs. 48-49. T h e entire m o u n t a i n is surrounded by worlds splendid a n d golden. All t h e groups of t h e Devas, t h e G a n d h a r v a s t h e serpents, a n d the Rāksasas a r e seen on t h a t king of mountains, as well as the splendid groups of Apsaras. T h a t m o u n t a i n M e r u is encircled by worlds causing welfare of living beings. 50-53. F o u r lands ( R e a l m s ) a r e established on t h e four sides. T h e y a r e Bhadrāśvas ( w i t h e a s t ) , Bhāratas ( s o u t h ) , K e t u m ā l a s i n t h e west a n d t h e K u r u s i n t h e N o r t h 1 which a r e the resorts of meritorious persons. At the side of t h e G a n d h a m ā d a n a , there is this a n o t h e r g r e a t G a n d i k ā ( h i l l ? ) . It is c h a r m i n g and fascinating in all t h e seasons. It is auspicious a n d pleasant. E a s t to West it extends to thirtytwo t h o u s a n d Yojanas. T h e (gross) length is 1.

This appears to be the four-continent (Catur-dvipī) theory about the

e a r t h where the distribution of Varsas is as follows: North (Uttara)—Kuru West. K e t u m ā l a

(Mt. Meru) Bhārata South

Bhadrāśva.

East


147

1.2.15.54-63 thirtyfour thousand Yojanas. T h e people auspicious holy rites are established t h e r e .

Ketumālas

of

54. All t h e m e n there are black a n d very strong. T h e y have g r e a t inherent vitality. T h e w o m e n have the colour a n d lustre of the petals of lilies. All of t h e m a r e pleasing to behold. 55. T h e r e is a g r e a t divine jack-tree t h e r e . It has all the six tastes. It is ī ś v a r a (masterly a n d powerful). It is t h e son of B r a h m a . It is as swift as m i n d a n d wanders wherever it pleases. 56. T h e y drink the juice of its fruits a n d live for ten thousand years. At the side of t h e M ā l y a v ā n , in the east there is a wonderful G a n d i k ā Hill ? 57. It has t h e same length a n d extent as t h e western G a n d i k ā . Bhadrāśvas 1 should be known (as the p e o p l e ) t h e r e . T h e y a r e always d e l i g h t e d i n their minds. 58. T h e r e is a forest of Bhadraśālas (excellent silk cotton t r e e s ) . T h e g r e a t tree is the Black M a n g o tree. T h e m e n there are white?complexioned, highly enthusiastic a n d endowed with strength. 59. T h e women have the colour a n d lustre of t h e waterlilies. T h e y a r e beautiful a n d pleasing to b e h o l d . T h e y have t h e l u n a r brilliance a n d h u e . T h e i r faces resemble the m o o n . 60. T h e i r limbs a r e cool of touch like t h e m o o n . T h e y h a v e the o d o u r of lilies. T h e i r span of life is ten thousand years a n d is free from ailments. 61-63. By drinking the j u i c e of the black m a n g o t h e m have p e r p e t u a l y o u t h .

all

of

To the south of the Śveta a n d to the n o r t h of the Nila, 2 there is the Varsa ( s u b - c o n t i n e n t ) R a m a n a k a . H u m a n beings a r e b o r n there. T h e y are free from impurities. T h e y give im­ p o r t a n c e to amorous dalliance. T h e y are devoid of old a g e a n d b a d odour. T h e y are white-complexioned a n d richly endowed with nobility of b i r t h . All of t h e m are pleasing to 1.

This seems to be modern China.

2.

Identified with ancient Sogdiana as the description tallies w i t h the

land, plant-life a n d people of those times, M.Ali—Ibid. p p . 83-84.


Brahmānda Purāna

148

behold. T h e r e also is a great N y a g r o d h a tree (holy fig tree) red (in c o l o u r ) . 64-66. T h e y m a i n t a i n themselves by drinking t h e j u i c e of its fruits. Those highly fortunate ones live for eleven thou­ sand f i v e h u n d r e d years. T h e y a r e excellent m e n a n d a r e always full of delight. To t h e south of the Srńgavān a n d to the n o r t h of the Śveta there is the V a r s a n a m e d H a i r a n v a t a . 1 T h e r e is a river here, the H a i r a n v a t ī . M e n of g r e a t strength a n d good brilliance a r e born there. 67-69. T h e y are heroic Yaksas of great i n h e r e n t vitality. T h e y are rich a n d pleasing to behold. T h e y have g r e a t vigour a n d they live for eleven thousand five h u n d r e d years. In t h a t V a r s a , there is a g r e a t Lakuca (bread fruit) tree of six tastes. By d r i n k i n g the j u i c e of its fruits, they live with­ out ailments. T h e Śrńgavān has three g r e a t a n d lofty peaks. 70. O n e of t h e m ( p e a k s ) is full of Manis (jewels). O n e is golden a n d ( t h e t h i r d ) one all sorts of Ratnas (precious s t o n e s ) ; it is embellished with houses. 7 1 . To t h e n o r t h of Ś r ń g a v ā n a n d to t h e south of t h e sea a r e t h e K u r u s . 2 T h a t V a r s a ( s u b - c o n t i n e n t ) is sacred a n d frequented by t h e Siddhas. 72. T h e trees t h e r e h a v e Madhu ( h o n e y , wine) for its fruit. T h e y p u t forth p e r p e t u a l flowers, fruits a n d sprouts. T h e y yield g a r m e n t s a n d o r n a m e n t s b y w a y of fruits. 73. Some of t h e trees a r e very delightfully c h a r m i n g a n d they bestow all desires. T h e y e x u d e excellent h o n e y full of sweet smell, colour a n d taste. 1.

Hairanvata V a r s a is closely associated w i t h the river Hairanvati

(mod. Zarafshan)both forms of the n a m e of the river m e a n ' T h e scatterer of gold'. In that case it must be presumed to be adjacent to S o g d i a n a — M . A l i . ibid. pp. 8 4 , 8 5 . 1,

'Kuru or U t t a r a k u r u : T h i s region as described here a n d in

other

Purānas includes the basin of rivers—The Irtysh,the O b , the T o b o l , in other words "Western Siberian R e g i o n s ' M.Ali—Op. Cit. p p . 8 4 , 8 5 . As M.Ali points out the m a i n tree w h i c h is supposed to feed the popula­ tion indicates the peculiar climate prevailing there.


149

1.2.15.74-80—16.1-3

74. O t h e r trees are ksīrins ( M i l k y ones) b y n a m e . T h e y a r e very delightful a n d they always exude milk c o m p a r a b l e to n e c t a r h a v i n g six tastes. 75. T h e entire ground is full of jewels w i t h fine golden particles for sand. It richly accords happiness in all seasons. It is devoid of m u d a n d dust. It is splendid. 76. Splendid h u m a n beings displaced a n d d r o p p i n g down from t h e world of the Devas are b o r n t h e r e . T h e y a r e whitecomplexioned a n d richly endowed with nobility of birth. All have steady p e r p e t u a l y o u t h . 77-80. W o m e n on a p a r with t h e celestial damsels give b i r t h to twins. T h e y d r i n k the milk of the Ksīrin trees compar­ able to n e c t a r . T h e twins are born in a trice a n d they grow together. T h e i r conduct of life, habits, forms a n d features a n d lovable qualities are all equal. T h e y love one a n o t h e r a n d have t h e same activities a n d practices as the Cakravāka birds ( R u d d y g e e s e ) . T h e y are always free from ailments a n d devoid of sorrows. T h e y resort to p e r p e t u a l pleasure. T h e y are of great vigour a n d vitality. T h e y live for fourteen thousand five h u n d r e d years. T h e y never carnally a p p r o a c h a n o t h e r men's'wives.

CHAPTER SIXTEEN The Description of Bhārata Sūta said : 1. " T h e (mode of) creation of the sub-continents in t h e auspicious B h ā r a t a had been viewed thus alone, by those w h o were conversant with the greatest principles. W h a t shall I describe once again u n t o y o u ? " The sage said : 2-3. " W e wish to know (more a b o u t ) this sub-continent 1 B h ā r a t a w h e r e these fourteen M a n u s , S v ā y a m b h u v a a n d others were b o r n in t h e course of t h e creation of the subjects. 1. VP.II.3,

T h i s topic is discussed in details in other Purānas also e.g. A P . 1 1 8 , V ā . P . 45.68-137.


150

Brahmānda Pur&na

O excellent one, recount t h a t to u s . " words of theirs

On h e a r i n g

these

Romaharsana said :

4. "I shall r e c o u n t to you all the subjects here in the B h ā r a t a Varsa. This is a mysterious sub-continent in the middle (of the universe) where the fruits ( o f K a r m a s ) are enjoyed w h e t h e r auspicious or inauspicious. 5. T h e sub-continent t h a t is to the n o r t h of the ocean as well as to the south of the H i m a v ā n , is called the sub-continent of B h ā r a t a where the subjects are Bhāratī (pertaining to Bhārata). 6. M a n u i s called B h a r a t a because of his (efficiency in the) m a i n t e n a n c e a n d n o u r i s h m e n t of the subjects. T h a t sub­ continent is thus remembered as B h ā r a t a in view of the expres­ sion defined t h u s . 1 7. It is from here t h a t heaven a n d salvation a r e a t t a i n e d a n d people go to the m i d d l e (?) a n d u l t i m a t e e n d . 2 N o w h e r e else on the E a r t h has the holy rite been enjoined on the h u m a n beings. 8. U n d e r s t a n d t h a t there a r e n i n e different divisions or zones of B h ā r a t a V a r s a . 3 It should be known t h a t they a r e separated by oceans a n d it is impossible to traverse from one t o the o t h e r . 1.

This is a n e w definition of Bharata attributing the credit to M a n u

w h o is called Bharata, as he maintained the subjects. T h i s supersedes the old tradition

which

attributed

this

name

to

Bharata

the son

of N ā b h i . Cf.

M t . P . l 14.5-6. 2.

T h i s is claimed as the special feature of India. D u e to this special

importance, Bhārata is called Karmabhūmi, cf. Bm.P.27.2, Mk.F.55.21-22, M t . P . 114.6-7 also Siddhānta Śiromani I I I . 4 . 3.

Cf. M K . P . 5 7 . 5 , M t . P . l 13.7-9. T h i s is a n e w definition which inclu­

des w h a t is known as 'greater Bhārata' today. It indicates the period w h e n H i n d u culture w a s assimilated by countries in the south a n d south-east Asia. V . S . Agrawala identifies s o m e of the divisions of Bharata as follows: Indra-dvīpa=Indradyumna

or

Andamans

N ā g a d v i p a = N i c o b a r s (Nakkavara in Cola inscriptions) Tāmraparni=Ceylon Varuna-dvipa=Borneo Kaseruman=Malaya-dvipa.


151

1.2.16.9-16

9-11. T h e nine divisions a r e — 1 ) I n d r a d v ī p a , 2) K a ś e r ū m ā n , 3 ) T ā m r a v a r n a , 4 ) G a b h a s t i m ā n , 5 ) Nāgadvīpa, 6 ) S a u m y a , 7) G a n d h a r v a , 8) V a r u n a a n d this 9) is the island surrounded by the sea. T h i s sub-continent (of B h ā r a t a ) extends north-south, from the source of the river G a ń g ā to Cape Comorin, a thousand Yojanas (1 Yojana = 12 K m ) . T h e extent obliquely(i.e. the b r e a d t h ) o n the n o r t h e r n p a r t is nine thousand Yojanas. 12. All r o u n d in the bordering regions the sub-continent is colonized by Mlecchas (barbarous t r i b e s ) . T h e K i r ā t a s live in the Eastern border lands a n d the Yavanas in the Western b o r d e r lands. 13. T h e Brāhmanas, the Ksatriyas a n d the Vaiśyas live in the central areas a n d the Śūdras ( a r e scattered) indifferent parts. T h e y a r e well settled m a i n t a i n i n g themselves by m e a n s of performance of sacrifices, wielding of weapons a n d carrying on trading activities. 14-16. T h e m u t u a l inter-dealings a m o n g those different castes continue (indefinitely), based on virtue, wealth a n d love, in regard to their holy rites. T h e conception of t h e different stages of life as well as of the Pañcamas (outcastes?) is duly maintained here among these people who have the tendency and endeavour to a t t a i n heaven and Moksa (Liberation). T h e ninth division which is an island is said to extend obliquely. He who conquers it completely is called S a m r ā t (Emperor). It is suggested that GaBhastimān and Saumya m a y be identified with J a v a a n d Sumatra (Mt.P.—a study, pp. 191-193). For the different opinions of scholars on the above identifications vide M. Ali: Geog. of Purānas, p p . 126-127. M. Ah contradicts the claim of Agrawala, Majumdar a n d others regarding the inclu­ sion of countries in south East Asia in Bhāratavarsa (Ibid. pp. 128-130). M. A l i identifies t h e m as follows: Tāmravarna=Indian Kaserumat=The

peninsula

coastal

plain

south

of the Kāveri.

between

the

deltas of Godāvari a n d

Mahānadi. Gabhastimān=The

hilly

belt

between

the

S a u m y a = T h e coastal belt west of the Indus. G a n d h a r v a = T h e trans-Indus region. V a r u n a = T h e Western coast of India. But these are mere speculations of scholars.

Narmadā

a n d Godāvari


152

Brahmānia Purāna

17. I n d e e d this world is S a m r ā t . T h e firmament is r e m e m b e r e d as Virāt. T h a t ( o t h e r ) world is remembered as Svarāt. I shall m e n t i o n in detail once again ( l a t e r o n ) . 18-19. T h e r e are seven m o u n t a i n s of excellent knots and ridges wellknown as Kulaparvatas} T h e y are M a h e n d r a , M a l a y a , Sahya, Śuktimān, the R k s a m o u n t a i n , the V i n d h y a and the P ā r i y ā t r a . These seven are Kulaparvatas. T h e r e are thousands of other m o u n t a i n s n e a r these m o u n t a i n s . 20-23. T h e y a r e not well known (i.e. well e x p l o r e d ) . T h e y possess good and essential things. T h e y a r e vast (in e x p a n s e ) . T h e i r ridges a n d peaks are of various shapes a n d sizes. T h e y a r e 2 M a n d a r a , t h e excellent m o u n t a i n , V a i h ā r a , 1.

O u t of the seven mountain ranges mentioned here the Mahendra,

M a l a y a , S a h y a ranges are \v:Il-known. T h e Vindhya of the Purānas included the Satpurā range south of the N a r m a d ā , the M a h ā d e o Hills, the Hazaribagh R a n g e and the Rājamahal Hills. Śuktimān, according to De (p. 196) is

the

portion of the Vindhya-range joining Pāriyātra and R k s a mountains including the hills of G o n d w a n a a n d C h h o t a Nagpur. But M. Ali. in the topographical M a p of Bhārata, shows it as a ring of ranges encircling the M a h ā n a d i basin, very nearly coinciding the present Mahākosala (Purānic

Daksina

Kosala)

region. T h e Pāriyātra m o u n t a i n is the ring of ranges north

of the

Narmadā,

nearly encircling the catchment areas of the C h a m b a l a n d the Betwā and thus corresponds with the Aravallis a n d

(modern)

Western Vindhya.

T h e Rksa mountain represents the modern V i n d h y a from the source of the Sonar to the eastern ranges marking the catchment area of the river Son. ( M . Ali. 2.

Op. Cit., pp.

112-113.)

S o m e of these mountains are identified as follows:

M a n d a r a — A portion of the H i m a l a y a s to the east of Sumeru in Garhwal. T h e hill in the Banka sub-division

of

Bihar is,

however, popularly believed

as M a n d a r a ( D e , pp. 124-125). Vaihāra

(?)

Dardura

= T h e Nilgiri hills ( D e , p . 5 3 )

K o l ā h a l a = T h e Brahma -yont hill in G a y ā ( D e , p. 101) M a i n ā k a = T h e Sewalik range from the G a ń g ā to the Bias (De, p. 121) V a i d y u t a = T h e Gurla range, south of lake Manasasarovar; the Śarayū

is

said to rise in this mountain ( D e , p. 16) Vātandhama

(?)

Krsnagiri = T h e Karakorum mountain,

Mus-tagh

(De,

G o d h a n a = G a r a t h a Hills in Bāna's Harsa-carita VI ( D e , p.

p.104) 70)

Puspagiri = T h e part of the M a l a y a range, the source of the Krtamālā or Vaiga

(De, p. 164).

U j j a y a n t a = M t . Girnar (De, p. 2 1 1 )


153

1.2.16.24-29a

D a r d u r a , K o l ā h a l a , along w i t h Surasa, M a i n ā k a , V a i d y u t a , Vātandhama, Nāgagiri, the m o u n t a i n P ā n d u r a (Palewhite i n c o l o u r ) , T u ń g a p r a s t h a , Krsnagiri, t h e m o u n t a i n G o d h a n a , the Puspagiri, Ujjayanta, the m o u n t a i n R a i v a t a k a , Śrlparvata, C i t r a k ū t a and t h e m o u n t a i n K ū t a ś a i l a . T h e r e are m a n y m o u n t a i n s other t h a n these. T h e y are smaller t h a n these, less well known a n d lesser n u m b e r of living beings d e p e n d e n t on t h e m . 24. T h e regions interspersed with these m o u n t a i n s a r e partially i n h a b i t e d by Aryas a n d partially by t h e Mlecchas (tribal-barbarous-people). T h e following rivers (beginning with) the G a ń g ā , the S i n d h u a n d the Sarasvatī are utilised by them for d r i n k i n g purposes. 25-2 7a. T h e foregoing three a n d the following rivers originate from the foot of t h e H i m a l a y a s , 1 viz. : the S a t a d r u , t h e C a n d r a b h ā g ā , the Y a m u n a , the Sarayū, t h e Irāvatī, t h e Vitastā, the Vipāśā, the Devikā, the K u h ū , t h e G o m a t i , the D h ū t a p ā p ā , t h e B u d b u d ā , the Drsadvatī, the Kauśikī, t h e T r i d i v ā . t h e Nisthīvī, t h e G a n d a k ī a n d the Caksurlohitā. 27b.29a. T h e following rivers are r e m e m b e r e d as depen­ d e n t on (i.e. originating from) the P ā r i y ā t r a m o u n t a i n : 2 T h e R a i v a t a k a = M t . Girnar near J u n a g a r h in Gujarat. Ś r i p a r v a t a = T h e famous hill in Eastern ghat in Kurnool Dist. Andhra Pradesh. C i t r a k ū t a — K ā m p t ā n ā t h giri in Bundelkhand, M a d h y a Pradesh ( D e , p . 5 0 ) 1.

The

watersheds

ranges of mountains

described

in

note 1 p. 152 above are

w h i c h b o u n d wholly or partly the catchment areas of important

rivers in India. H e r e is

a

list

of rivers rising from

the

Himalayas.

The

m o d e r n names of the rivers are given in brackets: The (Ravi),

Śatadru

the

Vitastā

(Sutlej), (Jhelum),

the the

Candrabhāgā Vipāśā

(Chenab),

(Beas),

the

the

Devika

Irāvati (Deeg-

a tributary of the R a v i ) , the K u h u ( K a b u l ) , T h e D h ū t a p ā p ā (Śāradā, w i t h its h e a d streams), the Budbudā (misprint for B ā h u d ā - R a p t i ) , the Drsadvatī (Chitang, a tributary of the G h a g g a r ) , the Kauśikī

( K o s i ) w i t h its three

headwaters. T h e Tridiva (?), the Nisthivi (?) T h e Caksurlohitā ( B r a h m a p u t r a ? ) — M . Ali. Op. Cit. pp.114-115. 2.

T h e modern n a m e s of the rivers are bracketed:

T h e Vedasmrti

(Banās),

U t a n g a n ) . T h e s e were the

big,

Vedavatī perennial

(Berach),

Vrtraghni (Banganga-

rivers of ancient Matsya-desha

{ n o w a part of M. P . ) T h e V a r n ā ś ā is W. Banas w h i c h flows west of Aravallis


154

Brahmānda Purāna

Vedasmrti, the Vedavatī, river V r t r a g h n i , the V a r n ā ś ā , the N a n d a n ā , the S a d ā n i r ā ^ the M a h ā n a d I , t h e Pāśā, the C a r m a n v a t ī , t h e N ū p ā , the Vidiśa, the Vetravatī, the K s i p r a a n d t h e Anantī (Avantī?). 29b-32a. These rivers originate from the Rksa v a n . 1 T h e y a r e sacred a n d their waters a r e crystal-like. T h e y are : T h e Śona, the M a h ā n a d a , the N a r m a d ā , the Surasā, the Kriyā, the M a n d ā k i n ī , the D a ś ā r n ā , the Citrakūtā, the T a m a s ā , the Pippalā, the Śyenā, the K a r a m o d ā , t h e Piśācikā, the Citropalā, the Viśālā, the Vañjulā, the Vāstuvāhini, t h e (Sa) Nerujā, t h e Śuktimatī, M a ŕ i k u t l , the T r i d i v ā a n d the K r a t u . 32b-33. T h e following auspicious rivers of holy waters have originated from the foot-hills of the V i n d h y a ranges. 2

the Nandanā (Sābarmati), the Sadānirā (Sarasvati), the M a h a nadi, the P ā ś ā (If Pārā=Pārbatī), the Carmanvatl (Chambal), the N ū p ā , ( G a m b h i r a ) , the Vidiśā (Bes), the Vetravati ( B e t w ā ) , t h e Ksiprā ( Ś i p r ā ) ; the Anautī (should be Avanti. It rises near M h o w ) M. Ah. Op. Cit. pp. 116-117) 1. T h e Purānic mountain ranges are so m u c h m i x e d up in our times that some rivers are attributed to either of t h e m : The Śona ) ( T h e s e do not rise in the Puranic T h e M a h ā n a d a (mahānadi) ) (' R k s a Parvata. The Narmadā )( T h e Surasā (?) )( T h e Kriyā (?) )( T h e Mandākinī )( T h e Daśārnā ( D h a s a n ) )( ) ( These are rivers T h e Citrakūtā ) ( from BundelT h e T a m a s ā (Tons) T h e Pippalā ) ( Seems to be one river called ) ( khand ( M . P . ) ] I Pippaliśyeni as in M t . P . , (mod. ) ( T h e Śyenā ) ( n a m e : Paisuni) )( T h e K a r a m o d ā (Karam-nāśā) )( T h e Piśācikā )( T h e Citropalā )( T h e Viśālā (Bewas near Sagar in M . P . ) T h e V a ñ j u l ā (As in V ā . P . it should be J a m b ū l ā m o d . J a m m i . T h e Vastuvāhini (Baghain, a tributary of the Y a m u n a ) T h e (Sa)Nerujā (rather Sumerujā as in V ā . P . (Sonar-Bearma) T h e Śuktimati ( K e n ) — M . Ah Op. Cit. pp. 118-119. 2. As noted above Puranic writers include even Satpurā hills in t h e Vindhya ranges. T h e modern names of the rivers are given in Brackets: T h e Tāpī ( T h e T a p t i and T ā p i also) T h e Payosni ( P a i n - g a n g a — D e , p . 150)


155

1.2.16.34-37

viz. : T h e T ā p ī , t h e Payosnī, the N i r v i n d h y ā , t h e Srpā ; t h e river N i s a d h a , t h e Vera, the V a i t a r a n l , t h e K s i p r ā , t h e V ā i ā , the K u m u d v a t ī , the T o y ā , t h e M a h ā g a u r i , t h e D u r g ā , a n d the A n n a ś i l ā . [ P r o b a b l y durgā (difficult to cross) a n d anna—rather anta—śilā (rocky w i t h i n ) a r e adjectives of M a h ā g a u r ī . ] 34-35. T h e G o d ā v a r ī , the Bhīmarathī, the Krsnavenā, the V a ñ j u l ā , the T u ń g a b h a d r ā , the Suprayogā, t h e Bāhyā a n d the Kāverī a r e t h e rivers o r i g i n a t i n g form the foot-hills of t h e Sahya r a n g e . 1 T h e y f l o w t o t h e south. 36. T h e following rivers h a v e originated from t h e m o u n t a i n M a l a y a . 2 All of t h e m a r e auspicious a n d they h a v e cool waters. T h e y are : the K r t a m ā l ā , the T ā m r a p a r n ī , t h e Puspajātī a n d the U t p a l ā v a t i . 37. T h e following rivers r e m e m b e r e d as d a u g h t e r s of t h e m o u n t M a h e n d r a : 3 T h e T r i s a m ā , Rsikulyā, T h e Vamjulā, the Tridivā, t h e (A) balā, t h e Lāńgūlinī a n d the V a m ś a d h a r ā . T h e Nirvindhyā

(Newuj)

R.

mentioned

in

Meghadūta

T h e Srpā or Śiprā T h e N i s a d h a (Sind, on this Narwar, the capital of Nisadhas was located) T h e Veni

(Wainganga)

T h e Vaitarani T h e Ksiprā The Vālā

(Baitarani)

(Probably, the same as iiprā) (?)

T h e Kumudvati The Toyā

(Suvarna-rekhā)

(Brāhmani)

T h e Mahāgauri

(Damodar)

T h e following : Durgā (difficult to cross) and anna (anta-) śilā (full of rocks) are probably the adjectives of the M a h ā g a u r i . — M . Ali—Op. Cit. pp. 120-121. 1.

M o s t of these rivers continue the s a m e o l d

them are modified e.g. T h e Bhīmarathī Vañjulā easiness

(Mañjirā), to b a t h e ) ,

the Suprayogā the B ā h y ā

n a m e s t h o u g h some of

( B h i m ā ) , Krsnavenā ( K r s n ā ) , the

(Vedavatī.

(Varadā,

The

Its original n a m e signifies AP.

correctly reads it as

Varadā). 2.

M o d e r n names of these rivers are bracketed: the K r t a m ā l ā

t h e Tāmraparnī,

the

Puspajāti

(or P u s p a j ā = P a m b i a r ) ,

the

(Vaigai),

Utpalavatī

(Periyar). — M . A l i — Op. Cit. pp. 122-23. 3.

T h e modern names of these rivers are given in brackets:

T h e Trisamā (Ghoda-hada, Bhagava, P a t a m a — t h e s e three headwaters of the Rsikulyā have this collective n a m e ) Rsikulyā

(repeated under rivers from Śuktimān), the V a ñ j u l ā

the Tridivā (collective n a m e for Vegavati, N ā g a v a t i

and

the three headwaters of the Lāńgūlini). T h e Langulini

(Lānguliā) — M . Ah—Op. Cit. p . 2 4 .

(?),

Suvarnamukhi—


156

Brahm&nia Purāna

38. T h e following rivers are r e m e m b e r e d as originating from Ś u k t i m ā n : x T h e Rsikulyā, the K u m ā r i , t h e M a n d a g ā , the M a n d a g ā m i n ī , t h e K t p ā a n d t h e Palāśinī. 39. All these rivers a r e identical w i t h t h e Sarasvati a n d t h e G a ń g ā . T h e y flow i n t o t h e sea. All of t h e m are rem­ embered as t h e mothers of the universe a n d dispellers of the sins of the worlds. 40-42. T h e y have h u n d r e d s a n d thousands of ancillary t r i b u t a r i e s . T h e following territories a n d realms have been founded on ( t h e banks of) these rivers: 2 t h e K u r u s , t h e Pāñcālas, t h e Śālvas, t h e M ā d r e y a s . t h e j ā ń g a l a s , t h e Śūrasenas, t h e B h a d r a k ā r a s , t h e Bodhas, the P a t a c c a r a s , t h e Matsyas, the Kuśalyas, t h e Sauśalyas, the K u n t a l a s , t h e Kāśis, the Kosalas, t h e G o d h a s , t h e Bhadras, the Kalińgas, the M a g a d h a s a n d t h e U t k a l a s . T h e s e a r e t h e realms in the m i d d l e of t h e c o u n t r y 2 a n d most of them have been r e c o u n t e d . 1.

T h e modern names are given in brackets:

T h e Rsikulyā T h e Kumārī Mandagā

(Mand),

(Arpā), Palās'ini 2.

(the same as mentioned a b o v e ) . (Suktel, joins the M a h ā n a d i near Sonpur, O r i s s a ) , T h e The

Mandagāmini

(Mahānadi—proper),

The

(Jonk in Raipur Dist.. M . P . ) — M . Alt—Op. Cit. p.

T h e author of this P u r ā n a includes the following parts of

Krpā 125.

India in

" M a d h y a d e ś a " . T h e s e are originally names of tribes applied to the land where they

settled: : Between the Ghaggar in the West and the G a ń g ā on the east

Kurus

and with forest belt on the north a n d the south. Pañcālas :—coterminus w i t h modern Rohilkhand w i t h the central portion of the G a n g a - Y a m u n a d o a b added to it. Śālvas: N e a r Kuruksetra to the west of the comprised

Matsyadeśa. De thinks it

of some portion of former Jodhpur, Jaipur and Alwai states

(De,

P- 1 7 5 ) . Mādreya or Madra : T h e region between the Ravi and the Chinab in the Punjab ( D e , p. 1 1 6 ) . Jāñgala:—generally Probably

associated

with

Kurus

and

called

Kuru-Jāñjgala.

it occupied the w o o d e d north eastern part of Kurus ( M . Ali.—Op.

Cit. p . 1 3 5 ) . Bhadrakaras a n d Bodhas the M i d d l e country Pataccaras

on

(along w i t h Śālvas) occupied the border land of

(Madhya-desha of Purānas). the

south

bank

of the

Y a m u n a are located in Banda

district ( M . Ali. Op. Cit. p. 1 7 1 ) . T h e Matsyas:—consisted of the territory of the former Alwar state and s o m e adjoining areas from former Jaipur a n d Bharatpur ( D e , p. 1 2 8 ) .


157

1.2.16.43-51a

43. T h e l a n d towards t h e n o r t h e r n extremity of t h e S a h y a m o u n t a i n where t h e river G o d ā v a r i flows, is t h e most fascinating r e a l m on t h e whole of the e a r t h . 44-45. A city n a m e d G o v a r d h a n a 1 was built there by R ā m a . Heavenly trees a n d divine medicinal herbs liked by R ā m a were p l a n t e d there by sage Bharadvāja to please R ā m a . H e n c e t h e region of t h a t excellent city b e c a m e c h a r m i n g . 4 6 - 5 l a . T h e following ones a r e the realms in the n o r t h ­ e r n p a r t s . 2 T h e Bāhlikas, the V ā t a d h ā n a s , t h e Abhlras, t h e 1.

N o w a village in Nasik District of Maharashtra. Formerly

an important centre of learning a n d Brāhmanas c o m i n g from that k n o w n as Govardhana Brāhmanas. It

is

mentioned

several

it w a s

area

times

are

in

the

famous Nasik Inscription of usasadāta (100 B . C . ) — E . I . V I I I p. 7 8 . (Epigraphia

Indica). 2.

Generally realms or countries are n a m e d after t h e n a m e s of

the

tribes or peoples settled there. T h e identifications of the realms on northern part are based on M. Ali's discussion in his Geog. of the Purārms, p p . 137-146. D. C. Sircar's G A M I is also referred to a n d only the p a g e no. is mentioned. The Bāhlikas or

Vāhlikas=People of

Balistan-region

Bolon, Nari a n d G o k h rivers. It coincides w i t h former

covered

by

the

British Baluchistan.

But Balkh ( N . Afghanistan) according to D. C. Sircar, p. 3 2 . The Vātadhanas= probably Waziristan. But Panjab-Rajasthan

region.—

Sircar p. 3 2 . The Ābhīras=South of Sauvira but east of the Indus-Western Part of Hyderabad, District Sind. The Kālatoyakas=Residents of K a l a t region

in

Baluchistan.

The Aparantas=This is the North-Western region called Aparita in V ā . P . The Suhmas ( ? ) = T h i s is in eastern India. The PātoīZ<u=Rohilkhand

(?)

The Carma-mandālas or Carma-khanda at the m o u t h of the river H a b a n d the Churma island. The

Gandharas—Kandahar—lower

Kabul

valley.

The Tavanas— Ionians, Greeks. The

Sindhu-Sauvlra-Mandals=Smdhu

and

Sauvira

are

Sauvira coincides w i t h Rohri-Khairpur region of Sind and

different the

regions.

remaining

portion is Sind. The

Tusāras=Tokharians in north Afghanistan,

but p e o p l e on the T o c h i

according to M. Ali p. 142. The Pallavas or Pahlavas=Region adjoining the H i n g o l V a l l e y on Parikan The

the

river. &j£a=Scythians.

The Kulinda=The S a m e as Pulinda in M t . P. Kunets of K u l u . But formerly they extended to Saharanpur a n d Ambala—Sircar p. 3 3 .


Brahmānda Purāna

158

Kālatoyakas, the A p a r ā n t a s ( ? W e s t e r n e r s ) , t h e S u h m a s , the Pāñcālas, t h e C a r m a m a n d a l a s , the G ā n d h ā r a s , t h e Yavanas, t h e S i n d h u s a u v ī r a m a n d a l a s , the Cīnas, t h e T u s ā r a s , the Pallavas, t h e Girigahvaras (dwellers of m o u n t a i n caves), t h e Śakas, the B h a d r a s , the K u l i n d a s , t h e P ā r a d a s , the Vindhyacūlikas, t h e Abisāhas, t h e U l ū t a s , the Kekayas, the D a ś a m ā l i k a s the Brāhm a n a s , t h e K s a t r i y a s , the Vaiśyas and the families of t h e Śūdras, t h e K ā m b o j a s , t h e D a r a d a s , the Barbaras, the Ańgalauhikas, t h e Atris, along w i t h t h e Bharadvājas, t h e Prasthalas, the Daśerakas, t h e L a m a k a s , the Tālaśālas, t h e Bhūsikas a n d the ījikas. Now u n d e r s t a n d the realms of t h e eastern p a r t s . 1

The Pārada—The s a m e as Parita in V ā . P . = Mithankot region of Dera G a z i K h a n District Pakistan. But Parthians of Khorasan according to D . C . Sircar p. 3 3 . The Kekayas=¥eap\e of the country between the Beas (De, p. 9 7 ) .

and

the

Sutlej

The Kāmbojas=People from Kafiŕstan w h o colonised the Kunar basin. The Daradas=The same ancient tribe living in the valley of the Kiseng a n g a in Kashmir. The Barbaras=People migrated from Barbaiy or N o r t h Africa. The Prasthalas—The district between Ferozepur, Patiala and Sirsa (De, 159). The DaSerakas— M a l w a ? But Marwar region of Rajasthan—Sircar, p.35. The Z.amofcu=Probably the same as Lampāka or L a m g h a n of t o d a y — associated with upper K a b u l 1. T h e ancient tribes and their locations from Eastern India are identi­ fied as follows: 77M Añgas=The country about Bhagalpur including M o n g h y r The Colabhadras=The C o r o m a n d a l Coast (?) to

The Airātas=Tipara a n d M o r u n g west of Sikkim. extreme east. ( D e , p. 1 0 0 ) . The Tomaras=The Garo hills of south west Assam

(De, 7 ) .

T h e y lived from N e p a l (De, p. 2 0 5 ) .

The 7anganar= Country from the R ā m g a ñ g ā river to the upper Sarayū <De p. 2 0 4 ) . The Hūnadarvas— Country round Manasa-Sarovar ? The Mudgarakas—Monghyr and country around

(De, p. 7 8 ) .

(?) ( D e , p.

132).

The .4ntogirii7=Rajmahal hills in Santal Pargana Bengal (De, P. 8 ) . B u t Sircar locates Antārgiri and Bahirgiri towards the north of Assam (p. 3 6 ) . The Maladas=A part of the district of S h a h a b a d — T h e site of Viśvāmitra's Aśrama near Buxar ( D e , p. 100) M a l d a District of Bengal and Rajashahi and West Dinajpur of Bengal ( M . Ali p. 1 5 1 ) .


1.2.16.51b-59

159

51b-55a. T h e Ańgas, t h e Vañgas, the C o l a b h a d r a s , the K i r ā t a tribes, the T o m a r a s , the Harhsabhańgas, the K ā ś m l r a s , t h e T a ñ g a n a s , the Jhillikas, fhe Ahukas, the H ū n a d a r v a s , t h e Andhravākas, the M u d g a r a k a s , the Antargiris ( t h e Bahirgiris, t h e Plavańgus, the M a l a d a s , t h e Malavartikas, t h e S a m a n t a r a s , t h e Prāvrseyas, the Bhargavas, the G o p a p ā r t h i v a s ( c o w h e r d kings), the Prāgjyotisas, t h e P u ń d r a s , t h e Videhas, the T ā m r a liptakas, .the ,Mallas, t h e M a g a d h a g o n a r d a s . These a r e re­ m e m b e r e d as the realms in the E a s t . 55b-59. T h e n , there a r e t h e other realms of t h e dwellers of the southern territories. 1 T h e y are the Pāruiyas, t h e K e r a l a s , The

District

Prāgjyotifas=K.āmaiūpa.

in

Assam.

The Pundras= Between A ñ g a and V a ñ g a a n d on the north side of the G a ń g ā (De, p. 155) ( M . Ali, p. 1 5 1 ) . The Videhas=T'vr)mX

country

between the Kosi and the Gandak to the

north of the G a ń g ā ( D e , p. 3 5 ) . The

in

Timraliptakas—Tamluk

Midnapur

District

including

Kontai

(De, p. 2 0 3 ) , ( M . Ali, p. 152). The

Mallas=Country

round

the

Paraśnath

hills

(parts.of Hazaribagh

a n d M a n b h u m Districts), but at Buddha's time they were at P ā v ā a n d Kusinagar (De, p. 123). The Magadha-Gonardas= M a g a d h a is South Bihar.

De identifies Gonarda

•with G o n d a in O u d h ( p . 7 1 ) , but no such combined n a m e is found in De a n d Sircar. The Bhargava-Ańgaya. was

the Y a m u n a - M e g h n a D o a b

(M.Ali,

Op. Cit.

p. 152), but he does not mention merely Bhārgava as in this text. 1.

T h e following identifications are based on D e .

The CW<u=The Coromandal Coast to the South of the Pennar including Tanjore

(p. 5 1 ) .

The Afūfti<M=Travancore on the Malabar coast

( p . 1 3 4 ) . But Sircar

suggests that they were probably people living on the Muri river (p. 3 6 ) . The Mahisikas = Southern M y s o r e ( p .

1 2 0 ) . also Sircar p. 3 9 .

Setukas—People of Setubandha, Rāmeśvara.—Sircar p.

38.

The Kaliñgas—South Orissa. (Puri a n d G a n j a m Districts)—Sircar p. 3 9 . The Ābhīras=South-eastern portion of Gujarat about the m o u t h of the Narmadā The

(Sircar p . l . ) . a

Vaidarbhas=Vid&rbha,

part

77K Dotwfoit<u=Dandakāranya The Maulika=\£ { p . 133). Mod.

'Mūlaka',

Aurangabad

a

District

of Maharashtra.

(Maharashtra) part

of

(—Sircar

(p.52).

Maharashtra p.

near

Aśmaka

39).

The Aśmakas=Aurangabad district and B o d h a n country round about in N i z a m a b a d District—(Sircar

p.

40.


Brahmāna'a Purāna

160

t h e Colas, t h e Kulyas, the Setukas, t h e Mūsikas, t h e forest dwelling K s a p a n a s , t h e M a h ā r ā s t r a s , the Mahisikas, the entire r e a l m of t h e K a l i ń g a s , t h e Abhīras, t h e Aisīkas, t h e Atavyas (Forest-dwellers), the Sāravas, t h e Pulindas, the Vindhyamauliyas, t h e V a i d a r b h a s , t h e D a n d a k a s , t h e Paurikas, t h e Maulikas, the Aśmakas, the Bhogavardhanas (those w h o increase sensual pleasures), the K o ń k a n a s , t h e K a n t a l a s , the Andhras, the K u l i n d a s , t h e Ańgāras a n d t h e Mārisas. T h e s e are t h e lands of the s o u t h ; u n d e r s t a n d t h e western regions. 60-63a. (Now) know t h e realms in t h e western regions. 1 T h e y a r e t h e Sūryārakas, t h e Kalivanas, the Durgālas, t h e K u n t a l a s , t h e Pauleyas, t h e K i r ā t a s , t h e R ū p a k a s , t h e T ā p a k a s , Karītis, t h e whole of K a r a m d h a r a s , t h e Nāsikas, t h e others w h o are in the valleys of t h e N a r m a d ā , t h e ( S a h a ) K a c c h a s , t h e (Sa) māheyas, t h e Sārasvatas, t h e K a c c h i p a s , t h e Surāstras, t h e A n a r t a s a n d t h e Arbudas. T h e above realms a r e t h e western ones. N o w listen to those w h o reside on t h e V i n d h y a s : 2 The (Sircar,

Bhogavardhanas= ( M o d . Bhokardan T a l u q a of Aurangabad District p.

40). Maharashtra

The Ka(Ku)ntalas—Southern

a n d N o r t h e r n C a n a r a District

— n o w a part of K a m a t a k a . The Ifu/imftu=Garhwala ( p . 1 0 6 ) . But it is surprising t h a t it is m e n t i o n e d as a state in the S o u t h . 1.

S o m e of these c a n be identified as follows: The Kirātas=Possibly a reference to K i r ā t a settlement in the West. The 7VaitAas=Nasik, n o w in Maharashtra. The Kacchas—Cutch,

now

in

Gujarat

State.

-77M Ānarta=Gujarat a n d a part of M a l w a ( D e , p. 8 ) . The Arbuda=Country around mt. Abu 2.

( D e , p.

16).

T h e following c a n be identified as per De and M. Ali. 77K Karūsas—The country around R e w a ( D e , p. 9 5 ) . The Mekalas= Country round Amarkaijtaka, the source of the N a r m a d ā

( D e , p. 1 3 0 ) . The

I/M:a/as=Orissa.

77i« DaJārpa^ Modern Eastern M a l w ā — ( S i r c a r , p. 4 3 ) . The Bhojas=Country around Bhilwara in

the

C h a m b a l basin

(M.Ali

p. 1 5 9 ) . Sircar identifies t h e m w i t h the people of Vidarbha w h o founded a K i n g d o m i n G o a (p. 4 3 ) . 77i« Kiskmdhakas= Kikarava

in

other

Purānas. Sircar

identifies

Kiskandhā w i t h m o d . Kalyanpur, S o u t h o f U d a i p u r Division (p. 4 3 ) .

this


161

1.2.16.63b-69

63b-66. T h e M a l a d a s , t h e Karūsas, the Mekalas, t h e Utkalas, the D a ś ā r n a s , a m o n g t h e excellent ones the Bhojas, the Kiskindhakas, the Tośalas, the Kośalas, the T r a i p u r a s , the Vaidiśa, the T u h u n d a s , the Barbaras, the Satpuras, t h e Naisadhas, t h e Anūpas, t h e T u n d i k e r a s , the Vītihotras a n d the Avantis. All these realms a r e founded on the ridges of t h e Vindhya. Hereafter, I shall recount the realms founded on t h e m o u n t a i n s (Hill-tribes). e T ^ a . 1 T h e y a r e t h e Nihiras, t h e Harhsamārgas, the K u p a t h a s , t h e T a ñ g a n a s , the Śakas, t h e Apaprāvaranas, t h e Ū r n a s , the Darvas, the H ū h u k a s , the Trigartas, t h e M a n d a l a s , the K i r ā t a s a n d the T ā m a r a s . 68b-69. Sages have said t h a t there are four Yugas, in t h e Bhārata sub-continent, viz. K r t a , T r e t ā , D v ā p a r a a n d T i s y a ( K a l i ) . I shall m e n t i o n their detailed divisions wholly later on.

Continued The Tolalas—It is the Southern part of K o s a l a or G o n d w a n

District

round Tosali ( M o d . D h a n t i ) in Puri District (De, p. 4 3 ) . The Kosdlas— Sircar identifies with D a k s i n a

(Southern) K o s a l a — M o d .

Raipur, Sitapur, Santalpur Districts. The Vaidiia= Eastern M a l w a w i t h Vidis'ā or Bhilasa as the capital. The

Tripura=The

region

round

Tewar—This

covers

upper

Narmadā

valley (present J a b a l p u r a n d parts of M a n d l a a n d Narasimhapur Districts.) The Naisadhas=Ma.rwax w i t h N a r w a r as the Capital The Anūpas= S o u t h M a l w a .

(De, p.141).

Country on the N a r m a d ā

about N i m a r

( D e , p. 8 ) . The Vītihotras=The country is

founded

in the S o u t h by

the

Narmadā

a n d N o r t h East, West by the Vindhya. T h e centre was Satwas 30 miles N o r t h West

ofHarda. The

Āvantis=Country

around

Ujjain.

The Tundikera=tA. Ali locates it within the N a r m a d a basin around t h e town

Sainkheda

(p.161).

The Nihāras= Location uncertain, D. C. Sircar G A M I , p. 4 5 . The Harhsa-mārgas=Peopleot H u m z a i n

N o r t h W e s t Kashmir.

This tribe

h a d a location t h e r e — D . C. Sircar Ibid. p. 38 a n d 4 3 . The Kupathas=Hill tribes in 1.

the N o r t h West of India.

T h e Mountain-system described in this w i t h M t . M e r u as the centre

is substantiated by the geographer M. Ah. in Geog. of the Purānas, pp. 47-59. For the m o d e r n n a m e s of the Puranic mountains vide Supra Ch. 1. p.l 1 F N . K


Brahman (la Purāna

162 CHAPTER SEVENTEEN

Varsas of Jambūdvipa, Kimpurusa, Hari and Ilāvrta* The sages said : 1. Recount to us the sub-continents of K i m p u r u s a a n d H a r i v a r s a as actually they a r e really. T h e sub-continent of B h ā r a t a has already been recounted by you. Sūta said : 2. Listen attentively, O B r ā h m a n a s , to what you are •desirous of hearing. T h e r e is a very large grove of Plaksa trees in the sub-continent K i m p u r u s a . It can be compared with the ^heavenly) N a n d a n a p a r k . 3. It is remembered t h a t the span of life in K i m p u r u s a is for ten thousand years. T h e m e n have golden complexion a n d the w o m e n are comparable to celestial damsels. 4. All people there, are free from ailments a n d sorrows. T h e y are perpetually joyous in their minds. T h e y have the lustre of hot glowing gold. 5. In the holy sub-continent of K i m p u r u s a , there is an auspicious tree oozing out (exuding) honey. All t h e K i m p u r u s a s •drink its excellent j u i c e . 6. T h e y say t h a t the sub-continent H a r i v a r s a is beyond K i m p u r u s a . T h e people there a r e b o r n resembling gold in the colour of their complexion. 7. All the people in the sub-continent of H a r i v a r s a are those w h o have been d r o p p e d d o w n from the Devaloka (Region of the D e v a s ) . All of t h e m h a v e the characteristics and racial features of the Devas. T h e y d r i n k the auspicious sugarcane juice. 8. In t h e sub-continent H a r i v a r s a , all the people live for eleven thousand years w i t h o u t a n y ailment. All of t h e m are joyous in their m i n d s . 9-10. O l d age prematurely.

does

not

affect

t h e m n o r do they die


163

1.2.17.11-20

T h e middle land which had already been described by m e , is known by the n a m e I l ā v r t a . T h e sun does not blaze very h o t t h e r e . T h e m e n d o not become aged. I n Ilāvrta, the m o o n a n d t h e sun as well as t h e stars are not very bright. 11. M e n are born there with the lustre of t h e lotus. T h e y have t h e colour of their complexion resembling t h a t of the lotus. T h e y have eyes like lotus a n d fragrance like t h a t of t h e lotus petals. 12. T h e i r diet consists of the fruit and j u i c e of the rosea p p l e . T h e y do not have sweat trickling down from their bodies. T h e y are sweet-smelling. T h e y a r e intelligent. T h e y enjoy all sensual pleasures, a n d the fruits of their meritorious actions. 13-14a. T h e y are fallen down from the world of the Devas. T h e y have golden g a r m e n t s . T h e excellent m e n who live in the sub-continent I l ā v r t a have a span of life extending to thirteen thousand years. 14b-15. It ( I l ā v r t a ) extends to nine thousand (Yojanas) in every direction from t h e M e r u . Its overall a r e a is thirtysix thousand It is situated like a platter.

Yojanas

square.

16-17. T h e G a n d h a m ā d a n a m o u n t a i n is nine thousand Yojanas away from the M e r u on the western side. It extends to thirtyfour thousand Yojanas from n o r t h to south. It extends as far as the Nīla a n d N i s a d h a m o u n t a i n s . Its height above the g r o u n d level is fortythousand Yojanas. 18. It goes down a thousand Yojanas deep into the e a r t h . Its girth also is the same. T h e m o u n t a i n M ā l y a v ā n is to its ( i . e . M e r u ' s ) east a n d its dimensions have been a l r e a d y r e c o u n t e d (as the s a m e ) . 19. T h e Nīla m o u n t a i n is in the south a n d the N i s a d h a is in t h e n o r t h . T h e M a h ā m e r u is well established in their midst with its dimensions. 20. In t h e case of all these m o u n t a i n s , t h e girth is t h e same as the extent to which they go deep d o w n into t h e e a r t h . It is r e m e m b e r e d t h a t their total length is a h u n d r e d thousand Yojanas.


164

Brahmānda Purāna

21*. (?) T h e i r outward a p p e a r a n c e is circular (spherical) like t h e e a r t h e r n sphere (within t h e enveloping) ocean. T h e lengths dwindle down a n d they are t h e n r e m e m b e r e d ( m o r e or less) equal to a square. 22. T h e r e is a river composed of t h e j u i c e of t h e rose apple. It flows t h r o u g h the m i d d l e of t h e oblong-shaped I l ā v r t a dividing it ( i n t o t w o ) . It has the colour of t h e fresh collyrium. 23. On the southern side of the M e r u a n d to t h e n o r t h of the N i s a d h a , t h e r e is an ancient eternal Rose-apple tree n a m e d Sudarśana. 24. It is perpetually laden w i t h blossoms a n d fruits. It is resorted to by Siddhas a n d C ā r a n a s . T h e whole continent is called J a m b ū d v ī p a after t h e n a m e of t h a t tree. 2 5 . T h e height of t h a t noble-souled lordly tree is one thousand a n d one h u n d r e d Yojanas. Everywhere it touches t h e firmament on all sides. 26. T h e thickness ( d i a m e t e r ) of its fruit is calculated by the sages with visions of principles (of reality) as eight h u n d r e d a n d sixty one Aratnis (I Aratni = 18-20 C m s . ) 2 7 . As they fall on t h e g r o u n d , these fruits m a k e a l o u d sound. T h e j u i c e of the fruits of t h a t J a m b ū (Rose apple) tree flows as a river. 28. This river c i r c u m a m b u l a t e s t h e M e r u a n d p e n e t r a t e s into t h e ground deep down a t the root o f the J a m b ū tree. T h e delighted ( i n h a b i t a n t s ) of I l ā v r t a always drink t h e j u i c e of the Jambū. 29. W h e n t h e j u i c e of t h e J a m b ū is d r u n k n e i t h e r old age n o r hunger, n e i t h e r weariness n o r d e a t h n o r .languor oppresses t h e m . \ 30. A type of gold n a m e d J ā m b ū n a d a is p r o d u c e d t h e r e . It is a glowing o r n a m e n t of t h e gods. It has t h e resemblance of I n d r a so far in lustre. 3 1 . T h e auspicious j u i c e of t h e fruits of t h e respective representative trees of all t h e sub-continents is hailed by all.

* Vā.P.46.21b and 22a is found combined here as Bd.P.I. 2.18.21. This being the translation of Bd.P., the text of the Bd.P. (though slightly confusing) is followed. . ,•/


165

1.2.17.32-37—18.1

W h e n it (the juice) becomes scattered over it ( t h e alluvial remains of it) become shining gold, an o r n a m e n t fit for gods. 32. It is d u e to the grace of god t h a t their ( — of the i n h a b i t a n t s ) u r i n e a n d faeces scattered over all directions as well as bodies of the dead a r e swallowed up by (absorbed i n ) the e a r t h . 33. It is declared t h a t the Rāksasas, Piśācas a n d the Y a k s a s — a r e all 'the residents of the H i m a v a t . It should be known t h a t the G a n d h a r v a s live on the H e m a k ū t a along w i t h the groups of t h e Apsaras. 34. Śesa, Vāsuki, T a k s a k a — ( y e s ) all the serpents (live) on the N i s a d h a . T h e thirty three (groups of) Devas (gods) authorised to p a r t a k e of the shares in the Yajña, sport a b o u t on the Mahāmeru. 35. T h e Siddhas a n d the B r a h m a n i c a l sages devoid of impurities live on the Nīla full of V a i d u r y a (Lapis L a z u l i ) . It is mentioned t h a t the m o u n t a i n Śveta belongs to the Daityas a n d the D ā n a v a s . 36-37. T h e excellent m o u n t a i n Śrń^ga-vān is the place w h e r e the Pitrs frequently move a b o u t . Living b e i n g s — b o t h t h e mobile a n d the i m m o b i l e — a r e settled in these nine sub­ continents with their different divisions duly s i t u a t e d . T h e i r prosperous growth, b o t h divine a n d h u m a n , is seen in diverse ways. It c a n n o t be a d e q u a t e l y e n u m e r a t e d . It should be believed by those w h o wish to b e * (?)

CHAPTER EIGHTEEN

The Description of the Jambūdvlpa The Bindu Lake—source of the Gańgā : Its four streams Sūta said : 1. prehend.

In t h e midst of the H i m a l a y a n ridges, there is a

Vā.P.46.38b—anububhūsata—(be believed) by o n e desirous to c o m -


166

Brahmānda Purāqa 1

m o u n t a i n n a m e d K a i l ā s a . T h e glorious a n d prosperous K u b e r a ^ lives there along w i t h t h e Rāksasas. 2-3. T h e king, the overlord of A l a k ā , rejoices (there) with the celestial damsels a t t e n d i n g on h i m . T h e sacred splen­ did a n d chill water originating from the foot of t h e K a i l ā s a m o u n t a i n has formed a lake n a m e d M a d a 2 ( M a n d a , in V ā . P . 4 7 . 2 ) . It abounds in white lilies and it resembles a sea. T h e auspicious river M a n d ā k i n ī 3 (the G a ń g ā ) rises from t h a t divine (lake). 4-5. On its banks t h e r e is t h e great divine park called N a n d a n a v a n a . To t h e North-east of t h e Kailāsa, in front of t h a t divine m o u n t a i n of all medicinal herbs, the m o u n t a i n full of jewels a n d minerals, t h e powerful m o u n t a i n of wonderful mysteries, there is a m o u n t a i n n a m e d C a n d r a p r a b h a . 4 It is perfectly white a n d it resembles splendid jewels. 6. At its foot there is a great divine lake n a m e d Svacchoda. F r o m t h a t divine lake rises a river n a m e d Svacchodā. 7-8a. T h e r e is a g r e a t splendid divine p a r k on its banks called C a i t r a r a t h a . O n t h a t m o u n t a i n lives M a n i b h a d r a along w i t h his followers. He is t h e ruthless lord of t h e armies of Yaksas. He is surrounded by the G u h y a k a s . 1.

T h e description of m o u n t Kailāsa, t h o u g h a poetic one, shows that

the Purāna writer w a s conVersant w i t h the topographical features of t h e Mānasa-sarovara basin.—vide M. Ali. op.cit., pp. 55-58. 2.

For understanding the Purānic presentation of the ancient river-

system, the following points are to be n o t e d : (1)

According to Purānas, a river normally originates from a lake either

(2)

T h e y believed that r i v e r s c a n penetrate through

over-ground or under-ground and is associated w i t h a mountain. channels, mountain-ranges a n d can flow in

subterranean

more than o n e current,

if intervened by ridges. (3) 3.

A river with all its tributaries is sometimes treated as o n e river. U n l e s s m e n t i o n e d otherwise all the references are to M. Ali's. Geog.

of Purāpas. Probably this is the river U m ā and the Z h o n g C h h u w h i c h flows through Gauri K u n d a on the eastern flank of Kailāsa into the R ā k s a s a T ā l (the twinlake of M ā n a s a S a r o v a r a ) — M . Ali, p. 6 5 . 4.

T h i s is probably the Surange La, the north-east range of Kailāsa

from w h i c h water flows into Lake K o n g y s T s o or Lake G o u n c h e — M . Ali. p . 6 5 .


167

1.2.18.8b-18

8b-9a. T h e holy rivers the M a n d ā k i n I a n d t h e Svacc h o d a k ā enter the great ocean t h r o u g h the middle of the sphere of the e a r t h . 9b-10. To the south-east of the Kailāsa, in front of the m o u n t a i n a b o u n d i n g in medicinal herbs a n d auspicious animals, the divine m o u n t a i n of diversified and wonderful components, the m o u n t a i n full of red arsenic, there is the great m o u n t a i n S ū r y a p r a b h a (having the lustre like t h a t of t h e s u n ) . It is red 1 in colour a n d it has golden peaks. 11. At its foot there is a great divine lake n a m e d L o h i t a . T h e great holy river n a m e d L a u h i t y a rises from t h a t (lake). 12-13a. On its bank is the great p a r k n a m e d D e v ā r a n y a which is devoid of sorrow. On t h a t m o u n t a i n lives M a n i d h a r a , the Yaksa of good self-control. He is surrounded by the Guhyakas who are gentle a n d highly virtuous. 13b-14. To the southern side of the Kailāsa is the m o u n ­ tain a b o u n d i n g in medicinal herbs a n d cruel, wild animals. In front of the three peaked Añjana that originated from the body of V r t r a , there is that very great m o u n t a i n V a i d y u t a possessing all sorts of minerals. 2

15. At its foot is the holy lake M ā n a s a , frequented by the Siddhas. F r o m it rises the holy river Sarayū t h a t is well known in all the worlds. 16-17. On its banks is the well-reputed divine forest n a m e d Vaibhrāja. T h e r e lives the son of P r a h e t i , w h o is a Rāksasa of self-control, a follower of K u b e r a , a n d of unlimited exploits ( b u t ) w h o is B r a h m ā p e t a (far removed from the V e d a s ) . He is surrounded by h u n d r e d s of Y ā t u d h ā n a s (demons) who a r e very terrible a n d who can traverse the skies. 18. To the west of the K a i l ā s a is the m o u n t a i n a b o u n ­ ding in medicinal herbs a n d auspicious animals, A r u n a 3 ( P i n k 1. This red-coloured mountain is K a n g l u n g Kangri (a south-east range of K a i l ā s a ) a n d the river Lauhitya is the Brahmaputra. From a smalt lake at the foot of the mountain, the Brahmaputra enters T a m c h o k K h a m b a h , the headwater o f the Brahmaputra. — M . Ali.—p.66. 2. This is the peak Gurla M ā n d h ā t ā , since Lake M ā n a s a Sarovara lies below its northern face a n d the river Karnāli ( M a p C h h u of T i b e t a n s ) — a major tributary of the Sarayū rises h e r e — M . Ali.—p. 6 6 . 3. T h i s is the Ladakh or L e h r a n g e — ( I b i d ) .


168

Brahmānda Purāna

in colour) the splendid a n d excellent m o u n t a i n full of gold a n d minerals. 19. This glorious m o u n t a i n is a favourite resort of Bhava. It resembles clouds(in c o l o u r ) . It is covered with splen­ did clusters of cliffs of gold. 20. T h e m o u n t a i n M u ñ j a v ā n is highly d i v i n e . It a p ­ pears to scrape the heaven by means of its hundreds of golden peaks. It is very difficult to climb or pass t h r o u g h as it is enveloped by show. 21-22. T h e r e stands Girīśa ( K i n g of m o u n t a i n s ) , called D h ū m r a - l o c a n a 1 (of smoke-coloured eyes). T h e Lake n a m e d Śailoda 2 is at its foot. It enters the a n d Sītā. 23-24. 'Surabhi'.

On its

briny sea in between the (rivers) Caksus banks is

the

well known divine forest

To the left a n d to the n o r t h of the K a i l ā s a is the auspi­ cious m o u n t a i n a b o u n d i n g in medicinal herbs a n d animals. In front of the excellent m o u n t a i n n a m e d G a u r a , full of H a r i t ā l a (yellow orpiment) there is the m o u n t a i n H i r a n m a y a . 3 This m o u n t a i n is divine, very great a n d full of precious gems a n d jewels. 25-26a. At its foot is the highly divine, splendid and c h a r m i n g lake n a m e d Bindusara. 4 It has golden sandy bed.

1. T h i s is N a n g a Parbat. (For details vide M. Ali.—Op. cit. p. 66-67. 2. T h e lake Ś a i l o d a seems to be the Wular lake w h i c h o n c e covered the w h o l e of Kashmir valley. T h e river Ś i l o d a is the J h e l u m w h i c h still flows through it a n d runs towards the west between the I n d u s a n d the Sutlej (the C a k s u and Sitā in the P u r ā n a ) — M . Ah', p. 67. 3. Gaura, H i r a n m a y a a n d S o m a ( m e n t i o n e d later in v.27 and in V ā . P . ) are the T i b e t a n ranges north of Kailāsa and are called n o w T a n g l h a , Aling Kangri a n d N y c h e n t h a n g l a — M . Ali. ( p . 6 8 ) . 4. Bindusara c a n be explained in two w a y s : ( 1 ) a collection of drops of water: T h e basin between M t . Aling Kangri a n d K a i l ā s a T a n g l h a is dotted w i t h innumerable small and large lakes. ( 2 ) a lake of frozen particles of snow. In the past , the basin AlingK a n g r i a n d K a i l ā s a — T a n g l h a w a s a n extensive snow-field. T h e P u r ā n a writer must h a v e known it through hearsay etc. According to De ( p . 3 8 ) it is on the R u d r a H i m a l a y a , t w o miles south of Gangotii.


169

1.2.18.26b-34

For t h e sake of getting the G a ń g ā , king B h a g ī r a t h a , the saintly king spent m a n y years n e a r it. 26b. He t h o u g h t — " M y ancestors will go to heaven on being b a t h e d in the waters of the G a ń g ā . " After d e t e r m i n i n g t h u s , he performed p e n a n c e with -the c o n c e n t r a t i o n of his m i n d in Śiva. 27. T h e divine river T r i p a t h a g ā ( t h e G a ń g ā ) (lit. the river with three courses) was at t h e outset established there as t h e deity. T h a t river originating from the foot-hills of Soma flows in seven channels. 28. G o l d e n sacrificial posts studded with jewels have b e e n scattered there. Śakra performed a sacrifice "there along w i t h all t h e Devas and a t t a i n e d Siddhi (spiritual e n l i g h t e n m e n t ) . 29. T h e luminous Milky way t h a t is seen at night in the firmament n e a r clusters of stars is t h e divine goddess, t h e T r i p a t h a g ā 1 (the G a ń g ā ) . 30. Sanctifying the heaven a n d t h e firmament, the celestial river fell on the head of Bhava (god Śiva) a n d got blocked up by m e a n s of his Yogic M ā y ā . 3 1 . T h e lake Bindusaras was formed by those few drops of w a t e r t h a t fell from the infuriated G a ń g ā . Therefore it is r e m e m b e r e d as Bindusaras. 32. Being i m p e d e d smilingly by B h a v a ( Ś i v a ) , the river goddess m e n t a l l y t h o u g h t of h u r l i n g d o w n Ś a ń k a r a . 33-34. " I shall pierce ( t h e e a r t h ) " , she t h o u g h t (to herself), " a n d e n t e r the netherworlds t a k i n g Ś a ń k a r a too along w i t h my c u r r e n t " . He understood w h a t she was desirous of 1.

Are the three ways of G a ń g ā its three stages ?

(1)

M i l k y w a y in the sky,

( 2 ) S n o w y or glacial G a ñ g ā .

( 3 ) Fluvial

Gańgā. T h e s e are the three stages of the formation of that river w h i c h are symbo­ lised

in

the legend of the descent of G a ń g ā

(Gańgāvatarana). T h e heavenly

G a n g e s (Akāśa G a ń g ā ) is a poetic n a m e for the galaxy in the north. But t h e blocking up of the G a ń g ā in the tresses of Śiva

(mentioned in V . 3 0 and 3 5 )

is the S n o w y or glacial stage and the melting of the snow-fields and glaciers is t h e release of the G a ń g ā . T h e legendary part played by king Bhagiratha in bringing the G a ń g ā to the scorched plains of northern Bhārata is still shrouded in mystery.


170

Brahmānda Purāna

doing a n d having realized her cruel i n t e n t i o n , he intended to conceal (absorb) the river within his limbs. 35-38. He blocked the river on his head as it fell on the ground with great force and velocity. In t h e m e a n t i m e he saw t h e king (i.e. Bhagīratha) in front of him, weary with p r o t r u d i n g network of veins a n d with all his sense-organs overtaken by hunger. T h e n he remembered the boon g r a n t e d to him. He t h o u g h t — " I have been propiti­ ated by this king earlier for the sake of the river ( G a ń g ā ) " . T h e n he recollected the words of B r a h m a t h a t he h a d h e a r d — " H o l d the celestial r i v e r " ; t h e r e u p o n he controlled his anger. On being propitiated by means of severe p e n a n c e , he set river free for the sake of Bhagiratha. He released t h e river t h a t h a d been blocked by his own prowess. 39-41. On being released, the river began to flow in 1 seven channels. T h r e e of t h e m flowed towards t h e east a n d three to t h e west. T h e river G a ń g ā flows t h r o u g h seven chan­ nels. T h e NalinI, H r ā d i n ī a n d Pāvanī a r e those which flow towards the east. T h e Sītā, the Caksus a n d the Sindhu flow towards the west. T h e seventh a m o n g t h e m followed Bhagira­ tha towards the south. 42. H e n c e t h a t river is Bhāgīrathī. It joined the salt sea. All these seven (channels, rivers) sanctify the sub-conti­ nent named Hima. 43-45. O r i g i n a t i n g from the lake Bindusaras, those seven splendid rivers flow over different climes almost all of t h e m being the lands of the Mlecchas (Barbarous tribes) a n d reach the place where Vāsava ( I n d r a ) showers, n a m e l y the lands of Śilīndhras, K u n t a l a s , Cīnas, Barbaras, Yavarias. Andhakas, Puskaras, Kulindas a n d Añcoladvicaras* ( ? ) . After dividing

1.

M. Ali.

(p. 6 9 ) identifies Nalini, Hrādini and P ā v a n i — t h e east-

flowing rivers—with the Yangtse, M e k o n g and Salween, the rivers flowing to the west, viz. the Sitā, the Caksus and the Sindhu with the Yarkand, the Shyok a n d the Indus, while the southern river Bhāgīrathī is the G a ń g ā . De however identifies

Sītā w i t h

t h e j a z a r t e s (p. 181) and the Caksus w i t h the O x u s or

Amudaria (p. 4 3 ) . *

Ańga-loka-varāS caye, in Vā.P.48, 4 3 a .


171

1.2.18.46-57

t h e land of sirhhavān in three parts, the river Sitā flowed i n t o the western ocean. 46-47a. T h e river Caksus flows over the following climes viz. C i n a m a r u s , the T ā l a s , the Camasamūlikas, the Bhadras, the T u s ā r a s , t h e Lāmyākas, the Bāhlavas, the Pāratas a n d the K h a ś a s . T h e n it falls i n t o the sea. 47b-49a. T h e S i n d h u flows over the following territor­ ies, viz. the D a r a d a s , along w i t h the Kaśmīras, the G a n d h ā ras, the R a u r a s a s , t h e K u h a s , the Śivaśailas, the I n d r a p a d a s , the Vasati, (?) the Visarjamas* ( ? ) , the Saindhavas, the R a n d h r a k a r a k a s , the Ś a m a t h a s , the Abhiras, the R o h a k a s , t h e Ś u n ā m u k h a s a n d the Ū r d d h v a m a r u s . 49b-52. T h e G a ñ g ā sanctifies the following praiseworthy countries (climes) viz. t h e lands of t h e G a n d h a r v a s , K i n n a r a s , Yaksas, Rāksasas, V i d y ā d h a r a s a n d the N ā g a s , the residents of K a l ā p a g r ā m a , the Pāradas, the T a d g a n a s (their cousin t r i b e s ) , the K h a ś a s , the K i r ā t a s , t h e Pulindas, the K u r u s , t h e Bharatas, the Pāñcālas, t h e Kāśis, the Matsyas, t h e M a g a d h a s , the Ańgas, the S u h m o t t a r a s , t h e V a ñ g a s and the T ā m r a l i p t a s . Thereafter, obstructed by t h e V i n d h y a (?) it falls i n t o t h e briny sea. 53-55. T h e n the sacred H r ā d i n ī flows towards the east flooding t h e banks on either side, the territories of the N a i s a dhas, the T r i g a r t a k a s , the Dhīvaras( fishermen), the Rsīkas, t h e N ī l a m u k h a s (bluefaced) the Kekaras, the Austrakarnas, the K i r ā t a s , the K ā l o d a r a s , the V i v a r n a s (outcastes), t h e K u m ā ras a n d the S v a r n a b h ū m i k a s * * (the golden grounds) t h a t h a d b e e n covered up to the extent as far as the sea shore on t h e east. 56-57. T h e n , the river Pāvanī too flows towards the east f l o o d i n g the Sup athas, the I n d r a d y u m n a lake, t h e K h a r a p a t h a s a n d t h e V e t r a ś a ń k u p a t h a s . T h r o u g h the middle o f J ā n a k ī * * * it flows over the K u t h a p r ā v a r a n a s . It enters the ocean of I n d r a d v ī p a , the briny sea. *

Vā.P.48.45

** ments. ***

reads:

vadātimSca visarjayan

/

V ā . P . 4 8 . 5 2 : Svarnabhūfitān, 'who are beautified w i t h Vā.P.48.55a. Madhyenodyāna-makarān

gold

orna­


172

Brahmānda Purdapa

58-6la. T h e n the river Nalinī flows rapidly towards t h e east sanctifying the countries of the T o m a r a s . t h e H a m s a m ā r g a s a n d the H a i h a y a s ; piercing through the m o u n t a i n s in various places it flows over various eastern territories. After reaching the K a r n a p r ā v a r a n a s , it flows over the Śvamukhas because they are contiguous. After flowing over desert regions a b o u n d i n g in sand dunes, it flows over the V i d y ā d h a r a lands. It enters the briny sea after flowing t h r o u g h the m o u n t a i n o u s territories. 61b-62. These rivers have h u n d r e d s a n d thousands of tributaries. All of t h e m flow there where Vāsava showers. T h e r e is a well-known fragrant (Surabhi) forest on the banks of the Vasvaukasā (?) 63. T h e scholarly K a u b e r a k a (son of K u b e r a ) of great self-control stays on H i r a n y a ś r ñ g a (Golden P e a k ) . He practises the performance of Yajñas. He is very great a n d valorous and his strength a n d splendour cannot be m e a s u r e d . 64. He is surrounded by those scholarly Brahma-Rāksasas who stay there. It is declared t h a t these four followers of K u b e r a are on a p a r with one a n o t h e r . 65. T h e prosperity of the residents of the m o u n t a i n should also be known in the same m a n n e r . In regard to virtue, love a n d wealth each is double t h a n the former (?) 66-67a. On the top of the H e m a k ū t a there is a lake n a m e d V a r c o v ā n . 1 T w o rivers viz. the Manasvinī a n d the J y o t i s m a t ī rise from it a n d they flow on either side falling into the eastern a n d the western seas. 67b-68a. T h e r e is a lake n a m e d V i s n u p a d a 2 on the ex­ cellent m o u n t a i n N i s a d h a . T w o rivers rise from it. Nākull.

T h e y are the G ā n d h a r v ī a n d the

68b-69a. T h e r e is a great d e e p lake at t h e M e r u called C a n d r a - P r a b h a .

1.

Noted

side of the

as Lake Ś a y a n ā or N ā g a in other Furānas is the Lake ' N ā k

T s o ' w h i c h w i t h P a n g o n g T s o forms an extensive water-sheet—M.Ali.p.71. 2.

M o d e r n Lake Chakmaktin, the source of the W a k h a n

river

which

flows west in the land of Gandharvas. It is in the W a k h a n region that M e r u a n d N i s a d h a c o m e closest t o e a c h other. — M . Ali.

(p. 7 1 ) .


173

1.2.18.69b-77

T h e sacred river J a m b ū rises from it. It is r e m e m b e r e d t h a t J ā m b ū n a d a (gold) is obtained from it. ( T h e gold obtained from it is called J ā m b ū n a d a ) . 69b-70a. T h e lake P a y o d a 1 i s o n t h e m o u n t a i n N ī l a . I t is very clear a n d it a b o u n d s in lotuses. T w o rivers rise from it, viz. the P u n d a r ī k ā a n d the P a y o d ā . 70b-71a.

T h e sacred Sarayū flows from the

mountain

Sveta. It is indeed from the M ā n a s a lake t h a t J y o t s n ā a n d M r g a k ā m ā have originated.

the

two rivers

71b-73. In the K u r u s i s the lake well k n o w n as R u d r a k ā n t a . 2 It a b o u n d s in lotuses, fishes a n d ( a q u a t i c ) b i r d s — I t is created by Bhava. T h e r e a r e twelve other d e e p lakes here. T h e y a r e well known b y the n a m e J a y a . T h e y a b o u n d i n lot­ uses, fishes a n d (aquatic) b i r d s a n d they a r e like seas. F r o m t h e m two rivers, t h e Ś ā n t ā originated.

and the Mādhvī

have

74. In the sub-continents K i m p u r u s a etc., t h e lord does not shower rains. Excellent rivers flow here, with waters t h a t pierce t h r o u g h the ground. 75. T h e following three m o u n t a i n s of great knotty ridges extend towards the east. T h e y are immersed u n d e r the b r i n y sea. T h e y a r e the R s a b h a , t h e D u n d u b h i a n d t h e great m o u n ­ tain D h ū m r a . 76. T h e m o u n t a i n s of great lofty cliffs—the C a n d r a , t h e K ā k a a n d t h e D r o n a extend towards the n o r t h . I n the nor­ t h e r n e n d they are immersed u n d e r the salt sea. 77. T h e m o u n t a i n s Somaka, V a r ā h a a n d the N ā r a d a extend towards the west w h e r e they have e n t e r e d t h e b r i n y sea.

1.

M.Ali.

( p . 7 1 ) identifies it w i t h the K a r a K u l of northern Pamirs.

It is a twin-lake mentioned as P a y o d a and Pundarika (like lakes Mānasasarovara a n d Rāksasa T ā l in the Kailāsa r e g i o n ) . 2.

These

are lakes in Siberia. It shows that the Puranic authors h a d

some idea that there were big lakes in that region. I doubt Ali's identification of the Balkash a n d the Baikal with the J a y a lake.


174

Brahmānda Purāna

78. T h e s e great m o u n t a i n s — t h e C a k r a , the Balāhaka a n d t h e M a i n ā k a , extend towards the southern sea. 79-81. I n between t h e C a k r a a n d the M a i n ā k a i n t h e south-east q u a r t e r , t h e r e is t h e fire n a m e d Samvartaka. It drinks t h e w a t e r . T h i s sub-marine fire is known by t h e n a m e Aurva. It has t h e face of a m a r e . T h e s e twelve m o u n t a i n s h a d entered the b r i n y sea formerly because of the fear of getting their wings c h o p p e d . T h e y were terrified by M a h e n d r a . This is seen in t h e white (i.e. circular m o o n on t h e full M o o n night) m o o n in the shape of a black r a b b i t ( o r d e e r a n d a r a b b i t ) . 82-84. T h e different divisions of B h ā r a t a have been re­ counted. T h e y are nine. W h a t has b e e n n a r r a t e d here is seen elsewhere too. T h e sub-continents vie w i t h one a n o t h e r in r e g a r d to good qualities, h e a l t h , span of life, piety, love a n d wealth. T h e living b e i n g s ' are endowed w i t h merits. In the different sub continents different classes of people live in the different p a r t s . T h u s this e a r t h sustains t h e cosmos stationed in the universe (i.e. the whole of this universe).

C H A P T E R NINETEEN

The Description of Plaksa and other Continents Sūta said : 1. I shall succinctly recount (information about) t h e 1 c o n t i n e n t of P l a k s a in t h e m a n n e r it really is. Listen to this, O excellent B r ā h m a n a even as I speak a b o u t it factually. 2. Its w i d t h is t w i c e t h e w i d t h of J a m b ū d v ī p a . Its r o u n d girth ( p e r i m e t e r ) is twice its w i d t h . 1. This dvīpa is next to J a m b ū d v i p a . Its n a m e Plaksa (a fig tree) indi­ c a t e s a l a n d of w a r m temperate climate. M.Ali, 'without hesitations', identi­ fies this w i t h the basin of the Mediterranean (Geog. of Purāpas, p. 4 1 ) . T h e s a m e Plaksa still persists as Placia, a town in M y r i a .


1.2.19.3-14

175

3. . T h e salty sea is encompassed by t h a t c o n t i n e n t . T h e r e the J a n a p a d a s ( t h e countries or rural regions) a r e all sacred. People do not die for a long time. 4. W h e n c e is the fear of famine there ? (i.e. there is no fear of famine t h e r e ) . W h e n c e is the fear of old age and sickness ? T h e r e too, there a r e seven holy m o u n t a i n s bedecked i n jewels. 5-6. T h e y are the receptacle of precious gems. T h e r e a r e rivers also. I shall m e n t i o n their names. In those five continents, viz. : Plaksadvīpa a n d others, there a r e seven long and straight Varsaparvatas (mountains belonging to the sub­ continents) stationed in every q u a r t e r . I shall m e n t i o n the seven extremely powerful (sub) continents in the Plaksadvīpa. 7. H e r e the first m o u n t a i n is G o m e d a k a . It is like the clouds. It is on account of its n a m e t h a t the sub-continent is also named Gomeda. 8. T h e second m o u n t a i n is t h e G a n d r a , which is endow­ ed with all types of m e d i c i n a l herbs. I t x is from here t h a t medicinal herbs were collected by t h e b r o t h e r s (Aśvins) for t h e sake of A m r t a ( N e c t a r ) . 9. T h e third m o u n t a i n is high a n d unscalable. It is n a m e d N ā r a d a . I t was o n this m o u n t a i n t h a t N ā r a d a a n d P a r v a t a were born formerly. 10-1 la. (Text partially defective) T h e fourth m o u n ­ t a i n there is n a m e d D u n d u b h i . It was on this m o u n t a i n t h a t the Asura D u n d u b h i , who h a d the boon of having d e a t h as he pleased, was formerly overpowered by the Devas. T h i s d e m o n h a d a great desire for swinging in a rope-swing on a Ś ā l m a l i (silk cotton) tree a n d this b r o u g h t a b o u t his d e a t h . l i b - 1 2 a . T h e fifth m o u n t a i n is n a m e d Somaka, where n e c t a r was formerly collected by the Devas. It was also b r o u g h t by G a r u t m a n ( G a r u d a ) for the sake of his m o t h e r . 12b-13a. T h e sixth leading m o u n t a i n is called by the n a m e S u m a n a s . I t was o n this m o u n t a i n t h a t H i r a n y ā k s a was killed by the divine Boar. 13b-14. T h e seventh m o u n t a i n t h e r e is V a i b h r ā j a . It is luminous. It is very lofty. It is crystalline. Since it shines w i t h its rays, it is r e m e m b e r e d as V a i b h r a j a .


176

Brahmānda

Purāna

I shall m e n t i o n their sub-continents in d u e order a n d by their names. 15. T h e first sub-continent is G o m e d a . It is r e m e m b e r e d by t h e n a m e Ś ā n t a b h a y a (having all fears s u b d u e d ) . T h e sub­ continent of (the m o u n t a i n ) C a n d r a is n a m e d Śiśira. T h a t of t h e N ā r a d a is S u k h o d a y a . 16. Ananda is t h e sub-continent of t h e D u n d u b h i . Śiva is r e m e m b e r e d as t h e sub-continent of t h e Somaka. K s e m a k a is t h e sub-continent of t h e leading m o u n t a i n ( S u m a n a s ) a n d D h r u v a t h a t of the V a i b h r ā ja. 17. In all these (sub-continents) the Devas, t h e G a n ­ dharvas a n d t h e Siddhas play a n d sport about along w i t h t h e C ā r a n a s . T h e y a r e being seen along with them. 18. T h e r e are seven rivers in every one of the sub-conti­ nents. T h e y flow i n t o t h e seas. I shall m e n t i o n these seven Gańgās by n a m e , O ascetics. 19. T h e following a r e t h e seven excellent rivers, viz. t h e A n u t a p t ā , t h e Sukhī, t h e V i p ā ś ā , the T r i d i v ā , t h e K r a m u , the Amrtā and the Sukrtā. 20. Those rivers grow towards those places where Vāsava (i.e. I n d r a ) showers ( r a i n s ) . T h e y have plenty of water a n d (swift) currents. T h o u s a n d s of o t h e r rivers flow i n t o t h e m . 21-22. T h e delighted people of these territories always drink (the waters o f ) these rivers. Those people, viz. the splendid Śāntabhayas, t h e joyous auspicious Śaiśiras, the Śivas, t h e Ā n a n d a s , t h e Sukhas a n d t h e K s e m a k a s along w i t h t h e Dhruvas. T h e subjects w h o have settled in them are endowed with t h e disciplined c o n d u c t a n d behaviour of t h e V a r n a s (castes) a n d Aśramas (stages in life). 23. All t h e subjects were strong a n d free from ailments. T h e y are devoid of sickness. A m o n g t h e m n o n e deteriorates a n d no one goes high up in arrogance (or there is no evolution­ ary a n d involutionary eras. 1 1. T h e terms Utsarpirā a n d Avasarpirti are the J a i n terms to indicate timecycles. Utsarpipi is the ascending cycle a n d Avaiarpinī is the descending cycle. T h e y are divided into six stages e a c h viz. good-good, good, good-bad, bad-good, bad, bad-bad ( M W p. 1 0 5 ) . T h e use of J a i n a terms like those of the Buddhists in a Brahtnanical work is not impossible. T h e n e x t verse ex­ plains this by assuming the existence of a perpetual Tretā yuga.


1.2.19.24-34

177

24. T h e r e is no peculiar state of affairs as p e r t a i n i n g to the Yugas, conditioned by the four Yugas. A period like T r e t ā yuga is perpetually present there. 25. T h e s e are the things to be understood in t h e five continents, Plaksadvlpa etc. T h e assignment of period is in conformity with the conditions of the region. 26-27. It should be known t h a t t h e people in these conti­ nents beginning w i t h Plaksadvlpa a n d ending with Sākadvīpa, are h a n d s o m e , well-dressed, strong a n d free from sickness. T h e y possess adequately happiness, long span of life, strength, h a n d s o m e features, health a n d virtuousness. M e n live u p t o five thousand years. 28-30. T h e continent of Plaksadvlpa is prosperous a n d vast. All r o u n d , it abounds in wealth and food-grains. It a b o u n d s in divine medicinal herbs a n d fruits. It possesses all types of medicinal plants and herbs. T h o u s a n d s of r u r a l a n d wild animals of all varieties surround t h e regions. O excellent B r ā h m a n a s , in its middle there is a great tree n a m e d Plaksa. It has been reckoned on a p a r with the J a m b ū tree (in t h e continent J a m b ū d v ī p a ) . T h e continent is n a m e d after t h a t tree. In a place in the middle of t h e inhabited country, it is worshipped by all the people. 31-32. T h a t continent of Plaksadvlpa is surrounded by a sea of sugarcane juice. 1 This sea is equal to Plaksadvīpa in length a n d extent. T h u s t h e position of Plaksadvlpa has been recounted to you all succ nctly a n d in the proper order. Now u n d e r s t a n d the c o n t i n e n t Śālmala. 33-34. Thereafter, I shall (now) recount t h e third excel­ lent c o n t i n e n t Ś ā l m a l a . 2 T h e ocean of sugarcane juice is encompassed by t h e con­ tinent Śālmala that is twice as m u c h as Plaksadvīpa in extent. It should be known t h a t there too are seven m o u n t a i n s t h a t are the sources of precious stones. 1.

T h e Iksu is the river O x u s . T h e river is taken as a s e a ( D e , p . 1 7 9 ) .

C a n it be regarded as a boundary surrounding Plaksadvīpa ? 2.

Puranic description of Ś ā l m a l a dvīpa leads,

M. Ali to identify it

w i t h tropical Africa bordering on the Indian ocean, including Madagasgar.


Brahmānda Purāna

178 35. In those seven sub sources of precious gems.

continents even the rivers are

T h e first m o u n t a i n is n a m e d K u m u d a . It resembles sun in brilliance. 36-37a. It stands with lofty and rugged with clusters of cliffs.

peaks

the

full of all minerals

T h e second m o u n t a i n here is well known by the n a m e U t t a m a . It encircles the firmament w i t h its peaks full of Haritala (yellow o r p i m e n t ) . 37b-38a. T h e third m o u n t a i n there is well reputed as Balāhaka. It encircles the firmament with its peaks full of n a t u r a l collyrium. 38b-39a. T h e fourth m o u n t a i n is D r o n a a n d it is here t h a t the great medicinal herbs Viśalyakaranl and Mrtasañjivini (are found). 39b-40a. magnificently.

K a ń k a is the fifth m o u n t a i n t h e r e .

It is perpetually endowed with flowers a n d surrounded by tree a n d creepers.

It rises up

fruits.

It

is

40b-41a. T h e sixth m o u n t a i n there is M a h i s a . It is like a cloud. On it t h e water-originating fire n a m e d M a h i s a lives. 41b-42. T h e seventh m o u n t a i n there is called by the n a m e K a k u d m ā n . It is there t h a t Vāsava saves duly from the subjects m a n y precious gems a n d keeps them to himself and approaches Prajāpati with them43. T h u s , these are the seven m o u n t a i n s in the Śālm a l a continent. T h e y are bedecked in jewels. I shall m e n t i o n their splendid sub-continents. T h e y are only seven (in number). 44-48. T h e sub-continent of the m o u n t a i n K u m u d a is remembered as Śveta; t h a t of U t t a m a is L o h i t a ; t h a t of Balāhaka is J ī m ū t a ; H ā r ī t a is remembered as (the sub-continent) of D r o n a . • T h e sub-continent of K a ñ k a is n a m e d V a i d y u t a and t h a t of M a h i s a is M ā n a s a . T h e sub-continent of the K a k u d m ā n is S u p r a d a by n a m e . These a r e the seven sub­ continents a n d ( t h e connected) m o u n t a i n s . U n d e r s t a n d the rivers in t h e m .


179

1.2.19.49-57

T h e y are t h e J y o t i , Śānti, T u s t ā , C a n d r ā , Śukrā, Vimocanī a n d Nivrtti the seventh a m o n g t h e m . T h e y are r e m e m b e r e d as the rivers in the different sub-continents. T h e r e a r e ' hundreds a n d thousands of other rivers flowing n e a r t h e m . No m a n is c a p a b l e of counting their n u m b e r . T h u s the situation of the continent Śālmala has been recounted to you. 4 9 . In its middle there is a great Śālmali (silk cotton) tree reckoned on a p a r with the Plaksa tree. It has large b r a n ­ ches. T h e continent is n a m e d after the tree. 50. T h e Śālmala continent is surrounded on all sides by the sea of liquor t h a t is equal to Śālmala in extent. 5 1 . Listen to the subjects in the northern continents, O sages conversant with piety. U n d e r s t a n d t h e m even as I recount properly in the m a n n e r I have h e a r d . 52-53. I shall recount the fourth continent K u ś a d v ī p a 1 succinctly. T h e sea of liquor is surrounded on all sides by K u ś a d v l p a t h a t is twice as m u c h as Śālmala in extent. U n d e r s t a n d the seven m o u n t a i n s there as they are being described. 54. It should be known t h a t the m o u n t a i n V i d r u m a is t h e first m o u n t a i n in the K u ś a d v ī p a ; t h e second one is the mountain Hema. 55. T h e n a m e of the third m o u n t a i n is D y u t i m ā n . It is a m o u n t a i n resembling clouds. T h e fourth m o u n t a i n is n a m e d P u s p a v ā n a n d t h e fifth one is Kuśeśaya. 56. T h e sixth one is Harigiri by n a m e a n d the seventh is remembered as M a n d a r a . T h e word (Manda means 'waters' a n d the m o u n t a i n is called M a n d a r a because it pierces or splits w a t e r . 57. T h e i r internal diameter is twice as m u c h as the cross-section (Pravibhāga). T h e first sub-continent is U d b h i d a a n d the second one is Venumandala. 1. that

After

detailing the m a i n features of K u ś a dvipa

M. Ali conclude*

it is identifiable with the tropical grass-lands viz. Iran, Irac and the

fringing lands of hot desert, o p . cit. (pp. 4 0 - 4 1 ) .


180

Brahm&nda Purāna

5 8 . T h e third sub-continent is R a t h ā k ā r a a n d the fourth one is r e m e m b e r e d as L a v a n a . T h e fifth one is D h r t i m a d V a r s a a n d the sixth Varsa is P r a b h ā k a r a . 59. T h e seventh one is n a m e d K a p i l a . In all those (sub­ continents) t h e Devas a n d the G a n d h a r v a s a r e the sanctifiers of the Varsas a n d the subjects* a r e the lords of t h e universe ( ? ) 60. T h e y play a n d sport a b o u t everywhere in great d e ­ light. T h e r e are neither robbers n o r M l e c c h a (barbarous) tribes in t h e m . 61-62. T h e people a r e mostly white-complexioned a n d they pass away in the d u e order (i.e. the y o u n g e r ones only after the older o n e s ) . T h e r e too the rivers a r e seven. T h e y a r e — D h ū t a p ā d ā , Śivā, Pavitrā, Santati, Vidyut, D a m b h ā a n d M a h ī . T h e r e are hundreds a n d thousands of rivers o t h e r t h a n these. T h e y a r e not well known. 63-64. All those flow to that place where Vāsava showers : Externally the K u ś a d v ī p a is incircled by the sea of ghee (clari­ fied b u t t e r ) . It should be known that the sea of ghee is equal to K u ś a d v ī p a in e x t e n t . T h u s the situation a n d position recounted to you all.

of K u ś a d v ī p a has b e e n

65. Hereafter, I shall recount the extent of K r a u ñ c a dvīpa. 1 It is r e m e m b e r e d to be twice as m u c h as K u ś a d v ī p a in extent. 66-69. T h e sea w i t h ghee as its liquid content is in contact with K r a u ñ c a d v ī p a . In t h a t continent, the excellent m o u n t a i n K r a u ñ c a is the first m o u n t a i n . Beyond the K r a u ñ c a is the V ā m a n a a n d beyond V ā m a n a is the A n d h a k ā r a . Beyond A n d h a k ā r a is the m o u n t a i n n a m e d Divāvrt. T h e excellent m o u n t a i n Dvivida is *

Vā.P.49.54a. reads prabhāsu

(they are like the lords of the universe)

in brilliance. A better reading. 1.

M. Ali examines the description of this Dvipa from different sources

and concludes that 'the K r a u ñ c a d v i p a of the Purānas is represented by the basin of the Black Sea. (op. cit. pp. 4 5 - 4 6 )


181

1.2.19.70-79

beyond Divāvrt. T h e great m o u n t a i n P u n d a r ī k a is beyond Dvivida. T h e D u n d u b h i s v a n a is m e n t i o n e d as the m o u n t a i n beyond P u n d a r ī k a . These are the seven m o u n t a i n s of the continent K r a u ñ c a dvīpa. T h e y are full of precious gems. 70. T h e y are covered with different kinds of trees a n d creepers endowed with plenty of flowers a n d fruits. T h e y are twice as m u c h as e a c h o t h e r in extent. T h e y increase the delight of residents. 71-74. I shall recount name. Understand them.

the

sub-continents

thereof by

T h e land (i.e. V a r s a ) pertaining (adjacent) to K r a u ñ c a is K u ś a l a ; that of V ā m a n a is M a n o n u g a ; U s n a is mentioned as t h e t h i r d V a r s a a n d it is beyond M a n o n u g a . Pīvaraka is beyond U s n a a'nd A n d h a k ā r a is beyond Pīvara. M u n i d e ś a ( l a n d of the sages) is r e m e m b e r e d by the learned m e n as the land beyond A n d h a k ā r a . D u n d u b h i s v a n a is m e n t i o n e d as the land beyond M u n i d e ś a . T h e land is p o p u l a t e d by Siddhas a n d C ā r a n a s . T h e people are remembered as mostly white complexioned. T h e r e too the rivers a r e r e m e m b e r e d as seven in n u m b e r in every sub-continent. T h e y are splendid. 75. T h e seven rivers Gaurī, K u m u d v a t ī , S a n d h y ā , R ā t r i , M a n o j a v ā , K h y ā t i a n d P u n d a r ī k ā are r e m e m b e r e d as Gańgā. 76. T h e r e are thousands of o t h e r rivers flowing n e a r t h e m a n d a p p r o a c h i n g t h e m (i.e. flo wing into t h e m like t r i b u t a r i e s ) . T h e y are large w i t h p l e n t y of w a t e r . 77. T h e glorious K r a u ñ c a Dvīpa is surrounded on all sides by the sea w i t h curds a n d whey as its liquid c o n t e n t . T h i s sea is e q u a l to the K r a u ñ c a D v ī p a in extent. 78-79. T h e Plaksadvīpa a n d o t h e r continents have been succinctly r e c o u n t e d . It is impossible to describe in d u e o r d e r the n a t u r a l features of all these continents in detail even in t h e course of h u n d r e d s of years according to divine reckoning. It is difficult to describe in detail the creation a n d annihilation of t h e subjects therein.


182

Brahmānda Purāna

80. I shall recount Ś ā k a d v ī p a 1 definitely as it exists. Listen even as I recount factually a n d realistically. 8 1 . Its extent is twice as m u c h as t h a t of K r a u ñ c a Dvīpa. It stands encircling the sea w i t h curds and whey as its liquid content. 82. T h e r e the territories of t h e general public are very sacred. T h e people die after a long life. W h e n c e is there famine among t h e m ? (i.e. they do not experience f a m i n e ) . W h e n c e is the fear from old age a n d sickness ? 83. T h e r e too t h e r e are only seven splendid mountains bedecked in jewels. T h e seven rivers a r e sources of origin of precious gems. Listen to their names from m e . 84. T h e first m o u n t a i n M e r u is said to possess (i.e. to be inhabited b y ) the Devas, the sages and the G a n d h a r v a s . T h e m o u n t a i n n a m e d U d a y a is golden a n d it extends towards the «ast. 85-86. T h e clouds take their origin there or go there for the sake of rain. To the west of it is t h e extremely great high m o u n t a i n J a l a d h a r a from which Vāsava perpetually receives a large supply of water. Therefore, it pours showers a m o n g the subjects d u r i n g the r a i n y season. 87. To t h e n o r t h of it is t h e R a i v a t a k a , where t h e con­ stellation Revatī is perpetually established in the firmament as ordained by Lord B r a h m a . 88. To the west of it is the extremely great m o u n t a i n n a m e d Śyāma. D u e to it, it is said, t h a t the subjects here attained darkness of complexion formerly. 89. To t h e west of it, it is r e m e m b e r e d , is t h e great silvery m o u n t a i n Astagiri. To the west thereof is t h e " i m p o s s a b l e mountain" [Durgaśaila), the great m o u n t a i n belonging to Ambikā (Ambikeya) ( b u t Ambikeya in V ā . p . 49.83) 90. To t h e west of Ambikeya is the beautiful m o u n t a i n Kesarin equipped w i t h all medicinal herbs. It is from this t h a t Vāyu, the Prajāpati, b e c a m e possessed of K e s a r a * ? 1. Strangely enough, two scholars c o m e to different conclusions about the location of Śākadvipa. M. Ali identifies it with the M o n s o o n lands of Asia where teak abounds viz. M a l a y a , Siam, Indo-China a n d southern China, while De identifies it with Tartary including Turkestan in central Asia (pp. 172-173). * V a . P . 4 9 . 7 4 reads : sa caiva Keśarītyukto yato Vāyuh prāvāyati. ' T h a t moun-


183

1.2.19.91-100

9 1 . T h e first V a r s a (sub-continent) is (away) from the m o u n t a i n U d a y a . T h a t great V a r s a i s r e m e m b e r e d a s ' J a l a d a ' . T h e second (Varsa) of J a l a d h a r a is remembered as S u k u m ā r a . 92. T h e ( V a r s a ) of R a i v a t a is K a u m ā r a ; t h a t of Ś y ā m a is M a n ī v a k a . T h e splendid sub-continent of the Asta m o u n t a i n should be k n o w n as K u s u m o t t a r a . 93-95. T h e sub-continent of the m o u n t a i n Āmbikeya is M o d a k a a n d t h a t of K e s a r a is M a h ā d r u m a . T h e dimensions of the continent such as narrowness, length etc. is to be reckon­ ed in a c c o r d a n c e with the K r a u ñ c a Dvīpa. T h e great tree, the e m b l e m of t h a t continent is Śāka by n a m e a n d it has great height. It has great following (?) It deserves w o r s h i p * . T h e territories of the r u r a l folk are holy. T h e y are endowed with the system of Cāturvarnya ( h a v i n g the four castes). T h e rivers too are extremely sacred (like) G a ń g ā . T h e y are of seven varieties (i.e. they are seven in n u m b e r ) . 96. T h e y are :—Sukumārī, K u m ā r ī , Nalinī, Iksu, V e n u k ā * * (?) a n d the seventh one G a b h a s t i .

Venukā,

97. T h e r e are other rivers too, thousands of t h e m w i t h sacred waters a n d cool currents. T h e y are splendid rivers flowing in the places w h e r e Vāsava showers. 98. N e i t h e r their names nor their m a g n i t u d e can be adequately understood or fully e n u m e r a t e d . Those excellent rivers are very holy. 99. T h e delighted folks of the clime, O Ś a m ś a p ā y a n a , drink the (waters of those) rivers. This continent is vast a n d is situated in the form of a wheel. 100. It is covered with the waters of the rivers a n d m o u n t a i n s that'resemble clouds,'that are wonderful a n d variegat­ ed by means of all sorts of minerals a n d t h a t are embellished w i t h jewels a n d corals.

tain is designated as Kesarin, w h e n c e the wind blows (all over the w o r l d ) . * Vā.P.49.77b reads mahānugāh. **

:

Tasya pūjām prayunjate for Bd.P.'s tasya pūjyā

T h o u g h the list of the seven rivers of this continent is

somewhat

different in V ā . P . 49.91-94., the reading Dhenukā from that list m a y be accept­ ed here to avoid repetition of Vertukā in the list of seven rivers in this text.


184

Brahmānda Purāna

101. It is endowed with different kinds of cities a n d flourishing r u r a l territories. T h e trees therein a r e laden with flowers a n d fruits all r o u n d ( t h e year) a n d the c o n t i n e n t a b o u n d s in wealth a n d food grains. 102. It is surrounded on all sides by t h e sea with milk for its liquid c o n t e n t . T h e sea is equal to Śākadvipa in its extent. 103. T h e r e i n , the r u r a l regions, the m o u n t a i n s , a n d the rivers are splendid a n d sacred. T h e lands (sub-continents) are fully inhabited by persons following t h e discipline of the four castes a n d the stages of life. T h e y (the sub-continents), a r e seven in n u m b e r . 104. In those sub-continents there is no clash of castes or mixed castes. Since D h a r m a is practised unswervingly, the subjects enjoy exclusive happiness. 105. T h e r e is no greediness amongst t h e m nor the eagerness for deception as a result of rivalry a n d jealousy. T h e r e is no adversity a m o n g t h e m . Everything is extremely n a t u r a l a n d timely. 106. In t h e m there is no acquisition (imposition) of taxes. T h e r e is neither p u n i s h m e n t nor persons worthy of being p u n i s h e d . T h e y are conversant with virtue a n d piety. T h e y protect one a n o t h e r by means of their a d h e r e n c e to their own respective duties. 107. O n l y this m u c h c a n be described in regard to t h a t c o n t i n e n t . O n l y this m u c h need be h e a r d in regard to the resi­ d e n t s of Śākadvīpa. 108-111. I shall describe P u s k a r a 1 t h e seventh continent. U n d e r s t a n d it. T h e ocean with milk as its liquid content is externally surrounded on all sides by the continent P u s k a r a 1 which is twice as m u c h as the Śākadvīpa in extent. T h e r e is only one glorious m o u n t a i n w i t h huge rocky cliffs. It possesses peaks, clusters of cliffs of various (sizes a n d shapes), full of precious jewels. It is extremely lofty and it has variegated

1.

Puskara is identified by M.

South-eastern Siberia o p . cit.

Ali with J a p a n , M a n c h u r i a and

(pp. 4 2 - 4 4 ) , while

De

identifies

it with

the a

portion of central Asia from the north of the O x u s including Western Tartary. Puskara is a Sanskritisation of Bhushkara or Bokhara, op. cit. (p. 1 6 3 ) .


1.2.19.112-122

185

ridges. T h i s great m o u n t a i n has diversified ridges in t h e eastern half of the continent. It is very extensive—of twentyfive t h o u s a n d ( Y o j a n a s ) — w i t h a n u m b e r of ridges. It rises up from t h e g r o u n d level u p t o thirtyfour thousand (Yojanas). 112. T h e m o u n t a i n r a n g e M ā n a s o t t a r a covers half of t h e c o n t i n e n t . It is situated n e a r the sea-shore just like the rising m o o n . 113. It rises u p t o a height of'fifty thousand Yojanas. I t s circular extent all r o u n d is also the same ( n u m b e r of Yojanas.) 114. T h e same m o u n t a i n is known as M ā n a s a in t h e western half of the c o n t i n e n t . T h e r e is only one great m o u n t a i n of i n h e r e n t s t r e n g t h situated in two p a r t s . 115. T h e c o n t i n e n t is surrounded on all sides by t h e sea with sweet w a t e r as its liquid content. This sea is as extensive on all sides as the continent of Puskaradvīpa. 116-117. It is remembered t h a t there are two splendid a n d sacred countries on t h a t continent. T h e y are opposite to t h e two ranges of the m o u n t a i n M ā n a s a . T h e sub-continent M a h ā v ī t a is outside the M ā n a s a m o u n t a i n r a n g e . It is said t h a t D h ā t a k ī k h a n d a is on its inner side. 118. T h e m e n there live for t e n thousand years. T h e y a r e free from sickness. T h e y have plenty of pleasurable experi­ ences. T h e y have a t t a i n e d m e n t a l powers ( t o a great e x t e n t ) . 119. T h e span of life a n d the h a n d s o m e features of all the people in b o t h the Varsas are declared to be the same. T h e r e is no distinction a m o n g t h e m as superior or inferior. T h e y a r e e q u a l in features a n d conduct. 120. T h e r e is n e i t h e r a robber n o r an oppressor. T h e r e is no jealousy n o r the fear of malicious envy. T h e r e is n e i t h e r seizure n o r t h e m e t i n g out of p u n i s h m e n t . T h e r e is n e i t h e r covetousness n o r (secret) a c c e p t a n c e (of gifts). 121. T h e r e is no (such distinction as) t r u t h a n d false­ hood or virtue a n d evil ( i . e . all a r e truthful a n d virtuous) . T h e r e is no agricultural activity or b r e e d i n g of cattle or t r a d e routes. 122. T h e three Vedas, the (fourteen) Vidyās, the system of civil a n d criminal a d m i n i s t r a t i o n , the desire to serve a n d arts a n d crafts—all these are not present in either of the two sub-continents of P u s k a r a .


186

Brahmānda Purāna

123. T h e r e is n e i t h e r rain nor (the flow of) rivers. T h e r e is neither chillness nor hot atmosphere. T h e r e are no water fountains breaking t h r o u g h (the ground) here. T h e r e are no m o u n t a i n cascades or springs. 124. T h e season there is just the same as in the n o r t h e r n K u r u s . T h e people a r e well pleased a n d contented in all the seasons. T h e y are devoid of the onslaught of old age. 125. T h u s the entire mode of activity a n d life in the D h ā t a k l k h a n d a a n d M a h ā v ī t a in the continent of Puskara has been r e c o u n t e d in t h e d u e order. 126. T h e c o n t i n e n t Puskara is surrounded by the sea with sweet w a t e r for its liquid content. This sea is equal to Puskara in extent a n d circumference. 127. T h u s , t h e seven continents are s u r r o u n d e d by the seven seas. T h e sea t h a t is immediately after a continent is equal to t h a t c o n t i n e n t . 128. T h u s , the m u t u a l increase in size, of the continents a n d the seas should be understood. T h e sea is called Samudra on account of the Samudreka1 (the state of being plentiful) of the waters. 129. T h e sub-continent is called Varsa2 because the four types of subjects enter (Viśanti)' or live (Nivasanti) in it a n d also because it accords pleasure u n t o the subjects. 130. T h e root y ' r s means " t o sport a b o u t " a n d the root •v/vrs means " t o s t r e n g t h e n . " Since the sub-continent enables the people to sport a b o u t a n d to stengthen their power for sexual dalliance, it is called Varsa. 131. T h e sea is always filled (is in flow-tide) in t h e bright half along w i t h the increase in the size of the moon. W h e n t h e m o o n wanes a n d decreases in size in the d a r k half, the sea also subsides. 132. It is n a t u r a l t h a t t h e sea gets filled when it fills itself. W h e n it becomes reduced it gets reduced (with­ d r a w n ) in itself. 1.

A popular etymology of Samudra 'a sea'.

2.

Varsa

'a

sub-continent' is traced to — a i ś — ' t o enter', ni—vas, ' t o

live', — r s — ' t o sport' and — v r s — ' t o strengthen'.


187

1.2.19.133-144

133. J u s t as the w a t e r in the boiler a p p e a r s to increase d u e to its contact with fire, so also t h e w a t e r in the great ocean becomes increased by itself n a t u r a l l y . 134. D u r i n g the bright and d a r k fortnights w h e n t h e m o o n rises a n d sets, the waters in the sea increase a n d decrease i r r a q u a n t i t y that is neither m o r e nor less t h a n usual. 135. T h e increase and decrease in the q u a n t i t y of w a t e r of the sea in accordance with the increase a n d decrease in the size of the moon is five h u n d r e d a n d ten Añgulas. 136. D u r i n g the Parvan days the increase a n d decrease of t h e waters of the ocean can be seen. T h e continents surr o u n d e d everywhere by w a t e r are remembered as Dvtpas because of Dvirāpkatva (i.e. t h e state of having w a t e r on either side. 1

137. T h e sea is called udadhi because it is t h e u l t i m a t e 1 rest (Ayana) of water (Udaka). M o u n t a i n s w i t h o u t knotty ridges a r e r e m e m b e r e d as Giris a n d those with t h e m a r e Parvatas. 138. T h e m o u n t a i n G o m e d a i n t h e Plaksadvīpa is there­ fore called Parvata. T h e Śālmali (Silk-cotton tree) is w o r s h i p ­ ped by persons of g r e a t holy rites in t h e continent Śālmaladvīpa.2 139. In t h e Kuśadvīpa, t h e s t u m p of K u ś a grass is (wor­ shipped) a n d it is called after its n a m e . In the K r a u ñ c a d v ī p a t h e r e is t h e m o u n t a i n K r a u ñ c a in the middle of t h e clime. 140. T h e m a i n tree in the Śāka Dvīpa is Śāka a n d it is called after its n a m e . In t h e P u s k a r a d v ī p a , t h e Nj$grodha (holy fig tree) is bowed to by t h e i n h a b i t a n t s t h e r e i n . 141. T h e great lord B r a h m a , t h e overlord of t h e t h r e e worlds is worshipped t h e r e . B r a h m a , t h e Prajāpati, lives in t h a t (sub-continent) along with t h e Sādhyas. 142. T h e r e , t h e thirtythree Devas perform the worship along with t h e great sages. T h a t lord, t h e most excellent of all the Devas is worshipped there by the Devas. 243-144. Different kinds of jewels a n d precious gems o r i g i n a t e (are q u a r r i e d ) in J a m b ū d v ī p a . 1.

Etymology of udadhi 'a sea'.

2.

VV 138-140 explain w h y particular continents are n a m e d Ś ā l m a l a ,

K r a u ñ c a , etc.


188

Brahmūnia Purāna

In all these continents, t h e size of t h e subjects is respect­ ively t w i c e those of t h e earlier ones on a c c o u n t of the span of life a n d state of health, their a d h e r e n c e to celibacy, truthful­ ness a n d control of the sense-organs. 145. T h e self-born lord protects the subjects b o t h t h e sluggish as well as scholarly in t h e two sub-continents t h a t h a d been mentioned in the Puskaradvīpa. 146. Raising up his rod of chastisement, lord B r a h m a , t h e overlord of the three worlds, protects t h e subjects. T h a t lord is t h e Minister of Visnu. He is the father and grandfather. 147. T h e subjects always take in the meal t h a t a p p r o a ­ ches t h e m ( automatically) by itself. T h e meal has great nutritive value and it consists of all the six tJksfST^ 148. T h e great sea with sweet water as its liquid content envelops the halves of P u s k a r a . T h e sea encircles it all r o u n d . 149. Beyond it, appears t h e existence of a great world. It is golden. T h e entire ground is like a single rocky slab. It is twice as large as the sea. 150. Beyond t h a t world is a m o u n t a i n t h a t is circular at t h e terminals. It is partially visible a n d partially invisible. It is called Lokāloka. 151. On this side of t h a t M o u n t a i n is all brightness a n d beyond it is all darkness. I t s height is r e m e m b e r e d as ten thousand Yojanas. %52. Its extent is also t h a t m u c h . It c a n go over t h e e a r t h as he pleases. T h e Āloka (brightness) is in t h e midst of worldly activities and t h e absence of brightness (i.e. darkness) is beyond t h e m u n d a n e . 153. All t h e worlds are included in t h e half t h a t is bright a n d t h e dark regions are external ones. T h e (region having the absence of brilliance outside extends all round to t h e extent of t h e worlds within. 154. It is circumscribed all r o u n d . It is encircled by water. ( T h a t portion) b e y o n d t h e brilliant region stands encircl­ ing t h e cosmic egg. 155-156. These worlds a n d t h e e a r t h consisting of t h e seven continents are w i t h i n t h e cosmic egg. T h e worlds are Bhūrloka, Bhuvarloka, Svarloka, M a h a s , J a n a , T a p a s a n d Satya


189

1,2.19.157-168

lokas. T h i s m u c h constitutes t h e g r o u p of worlds. This m u c h alone need be known a b o u t the u l t i m a t e end of the worlds a n d t h e great expanse beyond. 157. In t h e beginning of t h e bright h a l f of the l u n a r m o n t h t h e m o o n appears as t h o u g h it rests on a pot (i.e. is cre­ scent-shaped) in t h e western q u a r t e r . T h e body of the cosmic egg t o o is like t h a t . 158. It should be known t h a t there are thousands a n d crores of cosmic eggs like this, above, below a n d sideways. T h e cause of origin thereof is the u n c h a n g i n g Ā t m a n . 159. E a c h of these is encircled by seven Dharanas*1 (? Varanas—coverings) evolved of the P r a k r t i . In groups of t e n o r m o r e ( ? ) , they sustain one a n o t h e r . 160. All of t h e m are encircled m u t u a l l y a n d a r e evolved mutually. All round this Anda (Cosmic egg) is situated the Ghanodadhi—sea of solidified waters. 161-163. It stands, on being held all round by Vanoda (? Mistake for Ghanadd), solidified water. T h e circular zone of the solidified w a t e r stands on being held by Tejas (fiery m a t t e r ) all round, sidways a n d above. This fiery m a t t e r is like a ball of iron. It has a circular s h a p e . It stands on being held all r o u n d by solidified air. Simi­ larly, it is t h e ether t h a t holds a n d sustains the solidified a i r . 164. T h e Bhūtādi (the cosmic Ego) holds the e t h e r a n d M a h ā n ( t h e great principle) sustains (supported) by t h e Infinite principle, the Avyakta (the unmanifest o n e ) . 165-168. I t . i s endless a n d unmanifest. It is subtle in t e n ways ( ? ) . It is boundless It is non-selfpossessed. It has neither a beginning nor an e n d . W h e n c o m p a r e d w i t h t h e supreme Being, it is n o n - p e r m a n e n t . It is Aghora (not t e r r i b l e ) . It has no support. It is free from ailment. It is m a n y t h o u s a n d Yojanas away. It is non-concealed. It is darkness itself. It has no brilliance. It is unlimited. It has no space ( o r s u p p o r t ) . It is u n k n o w n even u n t o the Devas. It is devoid of all activities. It is well known as the extremity of darkness. It is non-brilliant *

V ā . P . 4 9 . 1 5 2 b reads Kāranaih 'By causes'.

1.

T h i s is

the Puranic concept of protective 'sheaths' round the uni­

verse ( B r a h m ā n d a ) . T h e influence of Sāńkhya categories is o b v i o u s .


190

Brahmānda Purāna

at t h e extremity of the ether. It is within t h e limit. It is t h e great abode of t h e lord. 169-170. T h e Śruti says t h a t t h a t divine a b o de is inacces­ sible to t h e Devas. T h e regions well-known to t h e learned ones a r e called 'Loka's. T h e y are situated within t h e jurisdiction of t h e great lord of t h e Devas. T h e regions which a r e b e n e a t h t h e M o o n a n d t h e sun, are called t h e worlds of t h e universe, by t h e wise. 171. T h e nether-worlds b e n e a t h t h e R a s ā t a l a a r e seven in n u m b e r a n d those above t h e m are also seven in n u m b e r . O B r ā h m a n a s , there are seven Skandhas (layers) of the wind along w i t h t h e Brahmasadana (abode of B r a h m a ) . . 172. I t s movement is five-fold from t h e P ā t ā l a (Nether­ world) to t h e heaven. This is t h e extent of the universe. This is t h e ocean of worldly existence. 173. T h e Living beings, originating from m a n y species go about ( h e r e a n d t h e r e ) . T h e y are beginningless a n d endless. T h e Prakrti stationed in (resting on) t h e B r a h m a n is the cause of t h e universe. It is mysterious a n d v a r i e g a t e d . 174. T h e creation of t h e lord is extensive. It is not c o m p r e h e n d e d even by t h e S i d d h a s , of g r e a t fortune a n d nobi­ lity who can u n d e r s t a n d things beyond t h e pale of sense-organs. 175-176. O excellent B r ā h m a n a , there is n e i t h e r decline or decay nor transformation, nor end of the e a r t h , w a t e r , fire, wind, ether, darkness, m i n d a n d the infinite body. T h i s is endlesr everywhere. So it is cited in wisdom. IJ7-179. Previously his n a m e has been m e n t i o n e d by me while recounting t h e n a m e s (of deities). It is he w h o has been wholly glorified by the n a m e of P a d m a n ā b h a . He is omnipresent. He is worshipped in all abodes, viz. on the earth, t h e nether-worlds, the f i r m a m e n t , t h e wind a n d t h e f i r e . ' U n ­ doubtedly He is worshipped in all the seas a n d in t h e heaven. T h i s self-same L o r d of great splendour is worshipped in darkness as well, it should be known. 180. Lord J a n ā r d a n a is a great Yogin. His limbs are divided in m a n y ways. This lord of t h e worlds is worshipped in all t h e worlds in diverse ways. 181. T h u s t h e worlds b o r n of e a c h o t h e r a r e sustained m u t u a l l y . T h e s e Vikāras (products or effects) of t h e Avikārin


1.2.19.182-191

191

( t h a t w h i c h does n o t u n d e r g o c h a n g e or distortion) are sustain­ e d b y t h e relationship o f t h e supporter a n d t h e s u p p o r t e d . 182. T h e e a r t h etc. are" t h e Vikāras (effects). T h e y a r e restricted by e a c h other. T h e y are superior to each T>ther a n d t h e y have p e n e t r a t e d m u t u a l l y . 183. Since they have been c r e a t e d m u t u a l l y , t h e y have a t t a i n e d stability. In the beginning they were without VUesas. T h e y a r e called Viśesas because they qualify others. 184. T h e three ( E l e m e n t s ) beginning with t h e e a r t h a n d e n d i n g w i t h Vahni ( f i r e ) * a r e limited ones. In view of t h e essence of the increase of qualities, they have Pariccheda ( e x a c t d e t e r m i n a t e n e s s , concrete s t a t e ) in p a r t i c u l a r . 185. T h e a c c u r a t e decision or j u d g e m e n t a b o u t t h e r e m a i n i n g principles is n o t perceived, owing to t h e i r subtle­ ness (Śauksmya). T h a t e a r t h is r e m e m b e r e d as Vyālokā (some­ t h i n g t h a t has a special brilliance?) b e y o n d all these other elements. 186-187. All the Bhūtas (elements) a r e circumscribed on all sides ( a n d h e n c e a c c o m m o d a t e d ) in t h e space, (or firma­ ment) just as in a big vessel smaller vessels are a c c o m m o d a t e d a n d d u e t o their m u t u a l support become smaller (to each o t h e r ) . Similarly, t h e different elements a r e considered ensconsced in t h e lustre of t h e firmament. 188. T h e whole of these four elements are bigger a n d superior to one a n o t h e r . As long as these elements exist t h e period of creation lasts to t h a t e x t e n t . 189. It is as t h o u g h like an i n t e r t u r n i n g of threads t h a t t h e different elements are considered enmeshed into one a n o t h e r . T h e r e can be no generation of an effect if Bhūtas (elements) are excluded. 190. H e n c e , the differences which are of the n a t u r e of effects are declared to be limited. T h e differences such as M a h a t a n d others are of t h e n a t u r e of cause. 191. T h u s , O B r ā h m a n a s , t h e real situation comprising of t h e seven continents, oceans etc. has been r e c o u n t e d by me topic by topic as it exists— (realistically). * The reading in the printed text is vādyanta which is meaningless. It should be vahnyanta in view of the mention of three elements.


Brahmānda Purāna

192

192. The p a r t i a l transformation of the Pradhāna w i t h t h e cosmic form has been m e n t i o n e d in detail. T h e zones have been enumerated. 193. This entire universe is presided over by the glorious Lord. T h u s the seven groups of elements have m u t u a l l y penetrated. 194. O n l y this m u c h of the situation (of the universe) can be recounted by m e . O n l y this much has to be h e a r d (i.e. listened to a n d understood) in regard to the situation of t h e e a r t h a n d things connected w i t h it. 195. These seven Prakrtis sustain one another. I am not able to e n u m e r a t e t h e m w i t h reference to their extents a n d dimensions. 196. T h e Prakrtis are i n n u m e r a b l e , above, below a n d at the sides. T h e situation of the constellations is in firmament in different zones a n d regions. 197. T h e situation of t h e earth is thereafter in the form of circle or globe. Henceforth, O clever ones, I shall recount the situation of the e a r t h .

C H A P T E R

T W E N T Y

Tha Description of the Netherworlds* Sūla said : l-2a. U n d e r s t a n d the details of the earth, the w.nd, the ether, the w a t e r a n d the fire which is the fifth o n e — t h a t are b e i n g recounted later on, t h a t h a d b e e n recounted earlier along with the proofs thereof.

•The Cosmic E g g consists of fourteen worlds follows:

arranged vertically

as


1.2.20.2b-4a

193

These elements are proclaimed as constituted of infinite ingredients a n d they a r e all-pervading. 2b-4a T h e e a r t h is t h e m o t h e r of all living beings. It sustains all animals a n d living beings. It is full of m a n y kinds of r u r a l regions a n d territories. It consists of m a n y towns a n d places of shelter. It possesses m a n y rivers, streams a n d m o u n t a i n s . It is crowded w i t h m a n y species of living beings. T h e e a r t h , the divine goddess, is sung a b o u t as infinite a n d extremely extensive. Continued I.

The

Upper Regions : Satya Loka Tapo-loka Jana

Loka

M a h a r Loka Svar

• I

Loka

Bhuvar

II.

The Middle Region :

' The

III.

The

Loka

Lower

Earth '

R e g i o n s or Nether-worlds: Atala Vitala Sutala Talātala Rasātala Mahā-tala Pātāla All these are supported by Lord Śesa, the Serpent-King. T h e s e lower regions are not dark or devoid of sunlight. T h e y are full of light a n d h a v e the affluence a n d comforts of the world of gods. Cf. B h . P.V.24, V P . V . 2 . V ā . P . 50.1-54. Baladeva U p ā d h y ā y a makes out a

plausible

Nether-worlds w i t h the continent of America,

43-49).

case

(vide

for

identifying

the

: Purāna-Vimarśa, p p .


Brahm&n&a Purāna

194

4b. T h e waters also should be understood as infinite — t h e waters contained in the rivers, streams, oceans a n d small Teceptacles such as ponds a n d puddles, those situated on the mountains a n d in the firmament a n d those within the bowels of t h e earth. 5. Similarly, the element of fire pervades all the worlds. It is cited as infinite, all-pervasive a n d originating from everything. 6. Similarly, the E t h e r is r e m e m b e r e d as unscrapable, beautiful, and a c c o m m o d a t i n g all or various objects, endless a n d infinite. 7. T h e Vāyu ( w i n d ) originated from t h e E t h e r . T h e waters are stationed within a n d above the e a r t h . T h e e a r t h is established on t h e water. 8. T h e E t h e r or the sky is t h a t which has nothing else g r e a t e r t h a n it. T h e n t h e e a r t h a n d t h e n the water. This is the opinion t h a t there is no state of being endless in regard to the Bhautika (objects evolved of the elements) * 9-10a. U n d e r s t a n d t h a t the e a r t h becomes developed d u e to the interaction (of. the elements). T h e s e q u e n c e — t h e e a r t h , t h e w a t e r a n d t h e E t h e r is well known. In t h e seventh (Netherworld) R a s ā t a l a this is t h e situation (?) lOb-lla. T h e nether-world called R a s ā t a l a has the land p o r t i o n extending to ten thousand Yojanas. It has been reckon­ ed by noble-souled persons t h a t each of the n e t h e r l a n d s is m o r e extensive t h a n the former. lib-13a. T h e first one is Atala by n a m e . Thereafter is S u t a l a . T h e next one, one should know, is T a l ā t a l a . Atala (? or Vitala) is very extensive. Beneath t h a t is t h e world. n a m e d T a l a (should be Mahātala?) a n d beyond t h a t is R a s ā t a l a . Beneath all these, it is r e m e m b e r e d , is the seventh world, the Pātāla. 13b-15a. T h e first portion of the ground is glorified as one w i t h black soil. T h e second world has pale white coloured g r o u n d . T h e third one has blue soil. T h e fourth one has yellow soil a n d the fifth one has a gravel-covered sbil. * The text is a bit obscure. Vā.P.50.9 (corresponding verse) reads: •taam

onto hyanantasya bhautikasya na vidyale. 'In this way, there is no end to the

objects evolved from bhūtas—as they are infinite.'


1.2.20.l5b-31

195

T h e sixth world should be known as (consisting of) rocky g r o u n d s a n d the seventh one is r e m e m b e r e d as one with golden ground. 15b-20a. T h e well-known palace of the lord of the Asuras— N a m u c i , the enemy of I n d r a is in the first nether-world. T h e following abodes too are in the first n e t h e r world, viz. the abode of M a h ā n ā d a , the city of Śańkukarna, the palace of K a b a n d h a , Niskulāda's town fully inhabited by delighted (jolly) people, the abode of the d e m o n Bhīma, the abode of Ś ū l a d a n t a , the city of Lohitāksas and Kalińgas, the town of ŚvāpaHa, the city of Dhanañjaya and of the noble-souled N ā g e n d r a (Lord of serpents), the city of Kāliya the serpent a n d t h a t of K a u ś i k a . T h u s it should be known t h a t there are thousands of cities ( a n d abodes) of the serpents, Dānavas a n d Rāksasas in the first Nether-world with black soil. 20b-25a. In the second nether-world Sutala, O Brāhmanas, a r e the abodes of the following, viz. the city of the first lord of the Daityas a n d Rāksasas i.e. of M a h ā j a m b h a , the palace of Hayagrīva, K r s n a a n d Nikumbha, the city of the Daitya n a m e d Ś a ń k h a a n d t h a t of G o m u k h a , the abode of the demons Nīla; M e g h a a n d K a t h a n a , the abode of K u k u p ā d a a n d t h a t of Mahosnīsa, the city of K a m b a l a the serpent a n d that of Aśvat a r a a n d the city of T a k s a k a the noble-souled son of K a d r u . T h u s there are, O B r ā h m a n a , thousands of cities belonging to the serpents, D ā n a v a s a n d the Rāksasas in the second nether­ world of pale white coloured soil. 25b-31. In the third nether-world is the well known city of the noble-souled P r a h l ā d a , A n u h r ā d a a n d Agnimukha, the city of (the D a i t y a ) n a m e d T ā r a k a , the city of Triśiras, the city of Śiśumāra the city of T r i p u r a , the demon Purañjana's city full of commotion, due to the gay, well-nourished people, the palace of Cyavana the Rāksasa, the city of K u m b h i l a a n d K h a r a the leading Rāksasas, t h e city of the ruthless V i r ā d h a with fire-emitting m o u t h , the city of H e m a k a the serpent as well as t h a t of P ā n d u r a k a , the city of M a n i n ā g a , the palace of K a p i l a , the palace of N a n d a k a the lord of t h e serpents, a n d t h a t of Viśālāksa. T h u s there are thousands of cities of the


196 serpents, Dānavas a n d Rāksasas, O netherworld with blue soil.

Brahmān$a Purāna B r ā h m a n a s in the t h i r d

32-34. In the fourth netherworld is the city of K ā l a n e m i the lion a m o n g Daityas, t h a t of the noble-soulcd Gajakarna, the city of Kuñjara, the vast a n d extensive city of Sumāli t h e leading Rāksasa, t h e abode of M u ñ j a , L o k a n ā t h a a n d Vrkavaktra a n d the city of Vainateya, t h a t extends to m a n y Yojanas a n d t h a t is crowded with m a n y birds. All these are in t h e fourth netherworld. 35-38. In the fifth netherworld t h a t is covered with sand a n d full of gravel is the intelligent Virocana, the lion a m o n g Daityas, the abodes of Vaidyuta, Agni-Jihva a n d t h a t of H i r anyāksa, the city of the intelligent Vidyujjihva, the lord of Rāksasa, the city of Sahamegha, t h a t of M ā l i n , the leading Rāksasa, the city of t h e serpent K i r m ī r a a n d those of Svastika a n d J a y ā . T h u s there are thousands of cities of the serpents, D ā n a v a s a n d the Rāksasas in the fifth netherworld full of gravel. T h i s should be known (as the situation) for ever. 39-42a. In t h e sixth netherworld is the excellent city of Kesari, the lord of the Daityas, the cities of Suparvan, P u l o m a n a n d M a h i s a , a n d the city of the noble-souled Suresa, the leading Rāksasa. It is there t h a t Śataśīrsa the son of S u r a m ā lives joyfully. T h e king of serpents n a m e d Vāsuki, t h e affluent a n d glorious friend of M a h e n d r a (stays t h e r e ) . T h u s there are thousands of cities of t h e serpents, D ā n a v a s a n d the Rāksasas in the famous sixth netherworld, R a s ā t a l a with rocky g r o u n d . 42b-46a. It should be known t h a t t h e city of Bali is in the seventh a n d the last netherworld P ā t ā l a . It is beyond every world. It is gay a n d full of m e n a n d women. It is full of Asuras, serpents a n d the h a p p y a n d joyous enemies of t h e Devas. T h e r e itself is the great city of M u c u k u n d a , t h e D a i t y a . It is teeming w i t h i n n u m e r a b l e great cities of Daityas full of bustle a n d com­ motion, thousands of the brilliant cities of the serpents, t h e great rising (flourishing) cities of the Daityas a n d t h e D ā n a v a s a n d t h e m a n y flourishing abodes of the Rāksasas. 46b-47. O leading B r ā h m a n a s , at the extreme end of P ā t ā l a t h a t extends to m a n y Yojanas resides Śesa the noble-souled ( k i n g of serpents). His eyes are like the red lotus. He is devoid


1.2.20.48-58

197

of d e a t h a n d old age. His b o d y is as w h i t e as t h e inner p a r t of well-washed Ś a ń k h a (conchshell). He wears blue clothes. He is very powerful. r" 48-49. His physical b o d y is h u g e . He is lustrous a n d mighty. He wears garlands of variegated colours. He has a t h o u s a n d faces (hoods) with m o u t h s shining a n d brilliant a n d resembling t h e golden-peaked ( m o u n t a i n ) in p u r i t y ( l u s t r e ) . H e has single K u n d a l a ( E a r - r i n g ) . H e appears splendid w i t h his thousand faces. He is refulgent, d u e to a series of tongues e m i t t i n g sparks of waving flames of fire. 50-54. W i t h his two thousand eyes t h a t have the reddish splendour of the rising sun a n d with his body t h a t is white a n d glossy, he a p p e a r s like t h e m o u n t a i n Kailāsa surrounded by clusters of flames. He has t h e white complexion like t h e M o o n as well as the K u n d a flowers. H e n c e t h e cluster of his eyes shines like t h e cluster of m i d d a y suns on t h e p e a k o f t h e white M o u n t a i n ( Ś v e t a P a r v a t a ) . He has a h u g e terrible body. W i t h it (resting) in his reclining pose on his couch, he a p p e a r s like^a thousand-peaked m o u n t a i n of vast dimensions (resting) over the e a r t h . This (enormously) huge lord of serpents, himself of great splendour, is being a t t e n d e d u p o n by extremely wise a n d noblesouled great serpents of h u g e physique. He is t h e king of all serpents. He is A n a n t a , Śesa, of excessive brilliance. 55. T h a t is t h e c o m m a n d m e n t ( o r act) of Visnu. T h a t is the final established b o u n d a r y (of t h e N e t h e r - w o r l d ) . T h u s t h e seven netherworlds t h a t could be discussed have b e e n recounted. 56-58. T h e y are always i n h a b i t e d by t h e Devas, t h e Asuras, the great serpents a n d t h e Rāksasas. Beyond this is t o t a l absence of light. It c a n n o t be traversed by the Siddhas a n d t h e Sādhus (good p e o p l e ) . It is u n k n o w n even to t h e Devas. W i t h a desire to e x p a t i a t e on the general position, O excellent B r ā h m a n a s , t h e greatness of t h e earth, water, fire, wind a n d t h e e t h e r is u n d o u b t e d l y n a r r a t e d thus. Hereafter, I shall r e c o u n t t h e m o v e m e n t of t h e sun and the M o o n .


198

Brahm&nda Purāna CHAPTER

TWENTYONE

1

The Solar System. Movements of Heavenly Luminaries: Division of Time Sūtasaid : I. As long as the Sun and the M o o n revolve, they areelevated by means o f t h e i r lustre a n d brilliance through their discus. 2-3. (?) T h e space covered by the brilliant refulgence of the sun and the m o o n is the e x t e n t of the seven seas a n d t h e continents. T h e light falls over half the extent of the e a r t h a n d the other side remains external. T h e sun a n d the m o o n illuminate the a r e a a r o u n d facing t h e m . In extent and m a g n i t u d e the heaven (i.e. the firmament) is remembered as equal to t h a t of t h e E a r t h . 4. T h e root \/av m e a n s illumination a n d protection. Revolving all r o u n d , the sun illuminates a n d protects the three worlds. H e n c e , on a c c o u n t of illumination a n d protection, he is remembered as ' R a v i . ' 2 5-6. Hereafter, I shall recount the m a g n i t u d e of the m o o n a n d the sun. T h e word Mahi ( e a r t h ) is (arbitrarily)-assigned to this sub-continent because of its state of being honoured (Mahitatvāt) T h e Solar disc is as extensive as t h e d i a m e t e r of this sub con­ tinent of B h ā r a t a . U n d e r s t a n d t h a t in Yojanas (1 Yojana = 12 k m . ) . 7. T h e extent of t h e disc of the sun is n i n e thousand Yojanas. Its g i r t h is three times the extent. 1.

T h e present chapter deals w i t h the ancient astronomical ideas in

the pre-telescope age. Similar information about the stellar region regarding the size of the planets and other stars, movements of the Sun, the M o o n etc. are found in other Purānas like the Bh.P. V Chs. 21-24, M t . P. Chs. 124-128, V . P . II Chs. 8-12 and V ā . P. 1.50. 57 to Ch. 5 3 — t h e last being textually t h e same as the Bd. P. and was useful in correcting the misprints in the present text. T h e astrological aspect of these planets etc. is found in G P . 59-64

and

A P . 121 etc. S o m e of these ideas regarding the distances, positions and dimen­ sions of planets are o u t d a t e d due to advance of modern astronomy. 2.

T h e author of this P u r ā n a is fond of giving popular etymologies.

T h u s Ravi 'the S u n '

is normally traced to •yjru—according to Utfāii IV

Ujjvaladatta, but here the author traces it to \ / a v — " t o protect".

13ft


199

1.2.21.8-19 8. In d i a m e t e r as well as girth m o o n is twice as m u c h as t h e sun.

(Circumference), the

Now I shall recount the extent of the e a r t h in Yojanas. 9. T h e extent a n d girth (circumference) of the e a r t h consisting of seven continents has b e e n reckoned in p r o p e r measure in the Purト]as. 10. I shall recount t h a t , after e n u m e r a t i n g t h e c u r r e n t Abhimト]ins (Deities etc. who preside or have the sense of possession e t c . ) . Those Abhimト]ins who have gone by are on a p a r with the c u r r e n t ones. 1!. T h e Devas who have gone by are on a p a r with t h e c u r r e n t ones in forms and n a m e s . H e n c e , I shall describe t h e surface of t h e e a r t h t h r o u g h the c u r r e n t Devas. 12. (I shall recount) the situation of world entirely t h r o u g h the c u r r e n t (Devas).

the

heavenly

T h e entire E a r t h is remembered as fifty crores (of Yojanas) in extent. 13-16. Its situation from an upword measure (?)is as far as the M e r u . H a l f the extent of the e a r t h is stated in terms of Yojanas. T h e extent of the e a r t h towards all t h e sides (quarters) from the m i d d l e of the M e r u is remembered as orte crore a n d eightynine lakhs (of Yojanas) a n d fifty t h o u s a n d * . H e n c e , the extent of the circular section of the e a r t h is roughly eleven crores a n d thirtyseven lakhs. This is reckoned as t h e extent of the surface of the E a r t h . 17-18. ( T h i s is reckoned as the extent of the e a r t h ) n a m e l y as m u c h is the extent in the firmament of the fixation of constellations, so m u c h is the situation of the revolution as far as the sphere of the e a r t h . By the measure of the Paryト《a (Revolution, R o t a t i o n ) , it is r e m e m b e r e d t h a t the firmament is equal to t h e e a r t h . This is recounted as the a b o d e of t h e seven continents.19. T h e situation of the spheres of the worlds is one over the o t h e r w i t h the g i r t h gradually reduced falling within t h e previous sphere. It is considered as the radius of the circular zone.


Brahmānda Purāna

200

20. T h e entire situation has been laid down thus a n d in them the creatures stay. This m a g n i t u d e of t h e bowl of the Cosmic Egg has been recounted. 21-22. These worlds as well as this e a r t h with its seven continents are within this cosmic Egg. T h e worlds are Bhūrloka Bhuvarloka, Svarloka, M a h a r l o k a , J a n a l o k a , T a p o l o k a a n d Satyaloka. These seven worlds have been created a n d they a r e a r r a n g e d in t h e shape of an U m b r e l l a . 23-24. T h e y are held by means of their own subtle coverings individually. These sources of origin a r e exterior eoverings a n d they are ten times m o r e t h a n ( w h a t they enve­ l o p e ) . T h e y are filled with special characteristics originating m u t u a l l y . All r o u n d this Cosmic Egg is present ( a s a fixed envelop) t h e solidified ocean. 1 25. T h e entire sphere of t h e E a r t h is held by t h e solidi­ fied water. T h e solidified ocean is held by a greater solidified fire. 26. T h e solidified fiery element is surrounded on all sides externally, sideways and upwards by a solidified wind element. Being held thus it rests stabilized t h e r e . 27. T h e solidified wind is surrounded by the firmament. T h e entire firmament is enveloped by the Bhūtādi (i.e. A h a m k a r a — E g o ) . T h e Bhūtādi is enveloped by the (principle called) Mahat. 28. T h e Mahat is enveloped by t h e Pradhāna t h a t is n i t e a n d it is of i m m u t a b l e n a t u r e .

infi­

I shall m e n t i o n in due order t h e cities of the g u a r d i a n s of the worlds. 29-32. ( I t is being mentioned) for the achievement of t h e proof of spreading t h e qualities of the l u m i n a r y bodies* (?) [Rather : T h e extent of the movements of the host of luminary bodies will now be described.] 1. Purānas believe that this cosmic egg is protected by sheaths consis­ ting of solid (ghana) gross elements, the earth being covered by the sheath of solidified water and the sheath of water being enveloped in the sheath of^ soli­ dified fire (ghana-teja)a.nd so on. T h e s e sheaths of gross elements are progres­ sively protected by sheaths of Ahańkāra Mahat a n d Pradhāna. Sāńkhya influence is evident on this belief. *

T h e text is corrupt here. T h e line in V ā . P . 5 0 . 8 6 b

is as follows :


201

1.2.21.33-41

To t h e east of M e r u a n d on t h e t o p of t h e M ā n a s a is the 1 city of M a h e n d r a . It is t h e excellent abode of Vasus (of w h o m I n d r a is t h e h e a d ) . It is d e c o r a t e d w i t h gold. To the south of t h e M e r u and on t h e top of t h e M ā n a s a itself, lives Vaivasvata Y a m a , (Yama t h e son of t h e Sungod) in the city called S a m y a m a n a . To t h e west of the M e r u a n d t h e t o p of t h e M ā n a s a it­ self, is t h e beautiful city n a m e d Sukhā. It belongs to the intel­ ligent V a r u n a . V a r u n a , the lord of the a q u a t i c beings, lives in t h e city n a m e d Sukhā. 33. To t h e n o r t h of t h e M e r u , on t h e top of the M ā n a s a itself, is t h e city of Soma, n a m e d V i b h ā v a r l . It is on a p a r w i t h t h e city of M a h e n d r a . 34. It is for t h e stabilization of V i r t u e ( D h a r m a ) a n d for the protection of all t h e worlds t h a t the g u a r d i a n s of the worlds (i.e. quarters) have stationed themselves in all t h e four quarters on t h e top of the M ā n a s a . 35. U n d e r s t a n d t h e m o v e m e n t of t h e sun d u r i n g t h e southern transit, as he goes to t h a t q u a r t e r . His m o v e m e n t is above all t h e guardians of t h e quarters. 36. D u r i n g his southern transit, the sun rushes forward like an a r r o w t h a t is discharged. He revolves always, t a k i n g t h e circle of luminaries with him. 37-38a. W h e n t h e sun is in t h e m i d d l e (of the firmam a n t ) at A m a r ā v a t ī (city of I n d r a ) his rising is seen in Samya­ m a n a belonging to Vaivasvata (i.e. Y a m a ) . At Sukhā it shall be t h e middle of t h e night a n d t h e sun (appears t o ) set at V i b h ā (i.e. V i b h ā v a r l ) . 38b-39a. W h e n the sun is in t h e middle (of t h e firma­ m e n t ) a t S a m y a m a n a belonging t o Vaivasvata (i.e. Y a m a ) , h e is seen rising at Sukhā belonging to V a r u n a . At V i b h ā it shall be t h e m i d d l e of the night a n d ( t h e sun appears to) set at M ā h e n d r i (Amarāvatī, the city of I n d r a ) . 39b-41. W h e n it is afternoon for t h e people of the south­ east ( o r t h e South a n d the E a s t ) , it is m e n t i o n e d as forenoon for Jyotir-gana-pracārasya pramānam parivaksyate. bracket, in this verse above. 1.

Cf V. P. II 8.9-11.

The

translation is given in

the


202

Brahmānda Purina

t h e people of t h e South-West (or, of those w h o a r e other t h a n t h e people of t h e s o u t h ) . It is t h e latter p a r t of t h e night for t h e m who are in t h e n o r t h . It is earlier p a r t of t h e night for t h e people of northeast. It is in this m a n n e r alone t h a t the sun shines in t h e n o r t h e r n worlds. 42. W h e n t h e sun is (in t h e middle of t h e sky) d u r i n g m i d d a y at Sukhā, (the city) belonging to V a r u n a , he ( t h e sun) ( a p p e a r s ) to rise in Vibhā, the city of Soma. 43-44. It is m i d n i g h t at Amarāvatī a n d it ( a p p e a r s to) set at Y a m a ' s city. W h e n t h e sun is (in t h e middle of the sky) during mid­ day at V i b h ā t h e city of Soma, the sun a p p e a r s to rise at AmarāvatI of M a h e n d r a . It is mid-night at S a m y a m a n a ( Y a m a ' s city) and t h e sun sets at t h e city belonging to V a r u n a . 4 5 . T h e sun revolves rapidly like the whirling firebrand. Moving about, t h e sun traverses t h e revolving constellations. 46. ' T h u s t h e sun thereby moves to the south a m o n g t h e four quarters. T h e sun rises a n d sets again and again. 47. T h e sun w a r m s two Devālayas (abodes of gods i.e. those of I n d r a a n d others) in the forenoon a n d two (other) Devālayas in t h e afternoon. D u r i n g t h e m i d d a y also, he blazes with his own rays. 48. After rising up the sun blazes a n d increases in w a r m t h by means of his own rays till t h e midday. Thereafter, with his rays decreasing (in w a r m t h ) the sun sets. 49-50. T h e two quarters of t h e East a n d West are r e m e m b e r e d by m e a n s of sunrise a n d sunset. While it blazes in front, ( t h e heat is felt) b e h i n d as well as at t h e sides. W h e r e t h e sun a p p e a r s rising, it is remembered as sunrise to t h e people there-of, w h e r e t h e sun vanishes, it is called sunset in regard to t h e people t h e r e . * 51-54. T h e M e r u is to the n o r t h of all a n d the Lokāloka 1 is in t h e south. *

Cf. Ait. Br. 111.44 w h i c h clearly states that there is rising or setting

of the Sun. Also V P . I I . 8 . 1 6 . Contrast the Greek idea of having a new sun every

day. 1.

T h i s is a mythical m o u n t a i n surrounding the outermost border of

the world. It is so called as it divides the visible wOrld from the region of dark­ ness. For its description vide W . 104-107 below.


1.2.21.55-64

203

D u e to the far distant position of the sun a n d d u e to his being covered by the line (horizon) of the e a r t h , the rays of the sun disappear (obstructed from sight). H e n c e it ( t h e sun) is not seen at night. T h e setting a n d rising of the planets, stars a n d the m o o n should be understood t h r o u g h the m a g n i t u d e of the a l t i t u d e of the sun. So also their rising a n d setting. T h e fire a n d the water have a white glimmer ( ? ) , while the e a r t h has a d a r k shadow. Since the sun is far off, it has no (fiery) rays even w h e n it has risen. Its redness is d u e to the fact t h a t it has no rays a n d t h e absence of heat is d u e to the redness. 55. Wherever the sun is seen occupying the line ( h o r i ­ z o n ) , it is seen m o r e t h a n a h u n d r e d thousand Yojanas above. 56., W h e n the sun sets along with his rays, the lustre of the sun enters the fire at night. H e n c e it shines from a distance. 57. T h e heat of t h e fire enters the sun w h e n it rises u p . T h e sun blazes d u r i n g the d a y time on being united with t h e fire. 58. T h e lustre a n d the heat are the brilliance of the sun a n d the f i r e . T h e y shine a n d f l o u r i s h d a y and night, d u e t o their m u t u a l p e n e t r a t i o n . 59. In t h e n o r t h e r n as well as southern halves of t h e e a r t h , the night enters the water when the sun rises. 60-64. H e n c e d u e to the p e n e t r a t i o n of the n i g h t d u r i n g the day, t h e waters are cool then. W h e n the sun sets, the d a y penetrates the waters. H e n c e the waters are w a r m d u r i n g the night d u e to the penetration of the day. Both in t h e south­ e r n half and t h e n o r t h e r n half of the e a r t h , it is in this o r d e r t h a t the d a y a n d night enter the waters when t h e sun sets or rises. T h a t (part of time) is called ' d a y ' w h e n t h e r e is sun­ light a n d the night is called T ā m a s ī (full of darkness). T h e n i g h t is well defined due to this. T h e d a y is r e m e m b e r e d at t h a t (period of t i m e ) which is d e p e n d e n t on the sun. T h u s , w h e n t h e sun traverses the m i d d l e of t h e sky, it passes t h r o u g h parts of the e a r t h in t h e course of a M u h ū r t a


Brahmānda Purāna

204

as it were (?) U n d e r s t a n d t h e n u m b e r of Yojanas here in t h e course of a M u h ū r t a . 65-67. It is one h u n d r e d a n d eightyone thousand Yojanas. This is t h e speed of the sun in a M u h ū r t a . W h e n t h e sun proceeds to t h e southern q u a r t e r w i t h this velocity, it covers the middle a n d t h e extremity of the quarter. T h e n d u r i n g t h e D ā k s i n ā y a n a , it whirls in the middle of the firmament. 68. U n d e r s t a n d t h a t it traverses in t h e southern q u a r t e r in the m o u n t a i n M ā n a s o t t a r a . T h e Visuva ( E q u i n o x ) is in t h e m i d d l e (?) 69. T h e circumference of the sun is estimated to be nine crores of Yojanas as well as fortyfive h u n d r e d thousands (i.e. 9,45,00000 Yojanas). 70-72. T h i s is laid d o w n as t h e m o v e m e n t (? t o t a l dis­ t a n c e traversed) of t h e sun in the course of a d a y a n d a night. W h e n t h e sun, in t h e equinox, it ocean. U n d e r s t a n d d u r i n g t h e equinox (3,81,00000).

after r e t u r n i n g from t h e south, remains traverses t h e n o r t h e r n regions of t h e milkits girth in Yojanas. It is estimated t h a t it is three-crores a n d eightyone h u n d r e d

73-74. W h e n t h e sun is in t h e (constellation) Ś r a v ā n a a n d U t t a r ā s ā d h ā it traverses the regions (quarters) to t h e n o r t h of t h e sixth ( c o n t i n e n t ) Śākadvipa. O B r ā h m a n a s , t h e magni­ t u d e of t h e n o r t h e r n q u a r t e r a n d t h e sphere (? of the sun t h e r e i n ) is estimated to be a crore of Yojanas. 75-77a. T h e divisions of t h e p l a n e t a r y system are : Nā.ga.-vithi,1 the n o r t h e r n one a n d Ajavīthi, t h e southern one. T h e s e divisions comprise three asterisms e a c h . T h e constel­ lations M ū l a , P ū r v ā s ā d h ā U t t a r ā s ā d h ā are the points of rising in t h e Ajavīthi while t h e contellations Aśvinī, Bharanī (lit. t h a t of which Y a m a is the deity) a n d K r t t i k ā are the 1.

A c c o r d i n g to Varāhamihira's Brhatasamhitā,

Vīthi is

a particular

division of the planetary sphere comprising of three asterisms. division

comprising

asterisms

Mūla,

Pūrvāsādhā

. and

Thus

the

Uttarāsādhā

constitutes the Aja-Vīthi, while As'vini, Bharani and Krttikā form the NāgavUhi.


1.2.21.77b-91

205

t h r e e points ( c o n s t i t u t i n g ) i n t h e Nāgavīthi. T h e m a g n i t u d e of t h e n o r t h e r n orbit as well as the southern orbit is eighty h u n d r e d thousand a n d f i v e thousand eight h u n d r e d Yojanas ( ? ) (or 8 0 4 - 5 8 = 138 lakhs of Yojanas.) 77b-79a. I shall henceforth m e n t i o n t h e distance b e t ­ ween t h e q u a r t e r s in Yojanas. T h i s distance is eight h u n d r e d t h o u s a n d four h u n d r e d a n d thirty t h r e e Yojanas (?) T h u s t h e distance b e t w e e n t h e quarters has been m e n t i o n ­ ed in Yojanas. 79b-80a. I shall m e n t i o n t h e distance b e t w e e n t h e t w o quarters a n d M e r i d i a n s , t h e southern a s well a s t h e n o r t h e r n , in Yojanas. U n d e r s t a n d it. 80b-81. T h e exterior a n d t h e interior distances between t h e quarters a n d t h e m e r i d i a n s are seven million a n d o n e h u n d r e d a n d seventyfive thousand Yojanas. 82. D u r i n g U t t a r ā y a n a t h e sun goes r o u n d t h e i n t e r n a l zones. D u r i n g t h e D a k s i n ā y a n a it goes r o u n d t h e e x t e r n a l zones always in t h e d u e o r d e r . 83. T h e r e a r e one h u n d r e d a n d e i g h t y t h r e e zones i n t h e n o r t h . I n t h e south also t h e sun traverses t h a t m u c h . 84-85. U n d e r s t a n d the m a g n i t u d e of t h e zone in Yojanas. It is seventeen thousand two h u n d r e d a n d t w e n t y o n e Yojanas (in magnitude). 86.

T h i s m a g n i t u d e of t h e zone has thus been recount­ r

ed in so m a n y Yojanas. *iflJ' ct( T h e d i a m e t e r of t h e zone is laid obliquely., ZyJeli"** 87-88. Everyday the sun traverses those (zones) m d u e order. J u s t as the o u t e r r i m of t h e p o t t e r ' s wheel comes b a c k quickly (i.e. revolves), so also t h e sun functions quickly d u r i n g his S o u t h e r n transit. H e n c e , he traverses a m a j o r p o r t i o n of t h e E a r t h in t h e course of a s h o r t e r period. 89-91. D u r i n g D a k s i n ā y a n a , on a c c o u n t of his rapidity, t h e sun covers t h i r t e e n a n d a half constellations in t h e course of a d a y of twelve M u h ū r t a s . He covers t h e same n u m b e r of cons­ tellations d u r i n g t h e night of eighteen M u h ū r t a s . J u s t as t h e central region of t h e p o t t e r ' s wheel whirls slowly so also, d u r i n g his n o r t h e r n transit t h e sun traverses w i t h less r a p i d i t y . H e n c e , d u r i n g his n o r t h e r n transit, t h e sun


206

Brahmānda Purāna

traverses with less velocity. H e n c e , he covers a lesser portion of t h e e a r t h in t h e course of a greater period. 92-93. After t h e advent of t h e n o r t h e r n transit, t h e d a y consists of eighteen M u h ū r t a s , the sun of slow speed traver­ ses thirteen a n d a half constellations d u r i n g t h e day. He covers t h e same n u m b e r of constellations d u r i n g t h e n i g h t of twelve Muhūrtas. 94. T h e Potter's wheel whirls still m o r e slowly at t h e Navel, in t h e same m a n n e r , like the l u m p of clay in t h e middle, t h e pole star ( D h r u v a ) revolves. 95-96. T h e y say t h a t t h e d a y a n d the night together consist of thirty M u h ū r t a s . Whirling in between the two quarters, D h r u v a revolves in circles. J u s t as the navel of the potter's wheel remains there itself, so also, it should be known t h a t D h r u v a whirls there ( w i t h o u t changing its place) itself. 97-99. It ( p o l e star) whirls in circles in between the two q u a r t e r s . T h e m o v e m e n t of the- sun is slow by d a y a n d quick at night. D u r ng the n o r t h e r n transit the' m o v e m e n t of t h e sun by d a y is slow a n d very quick by the night. D u r i n g t h e southern transit the m o v e m e n t of t h e sun by the d a y is quick a n d t h a t by t h e night is slow. 100. T h u s , by means of regular a n d irregular move­ m e n t s a n d proceeding along its orbit, t h e sun divides days a n d nights. 101. These g u a r d i a n s of the four quarters are stationed on the Lokāloka m o u n t a i n . Agastya ( t h e star C a n o p u s ) quickly traverses over t h e m . 102-106. D a y a n d night he undergoes these diverse motions to t h e south of t h e Nāgavīthī a n d to t h e n o r t h of t h e Lokāloka. O u t s i d e t h e p a t h of V a i ś v ā n a r a , he is the extender of the worlds. As long as t h e lustre of the sun shines from behind, there is brightness in front of a n d at t h e sides of t h e Lokāloka. T h e m o u n t a i n is ten thousand Yojanas in height. It is partially lighted a n d partially not lighted ( i n d a r k n e s s ) . It is c i r c u l a r all r o u n d . T h e stars, the m o o n a n d t h e sun, along w i t h


207

1.2.21.107-116

t h e planets a n d the groups of constellations shine within t h e b o u n d a r y of the world encircled by the m o u n t a i n Lokāloka. T h e world is only this'lar. Beyond this is darkness. 107-111. This ( m o u n t a i n ) has t h e illumination on the side of the world. Beyond the worlds, it is devoid of illumina­ tion. T h e inter-space b e t w e e n , U s ā ( N i g h t o r D a w n ) a n d Vyusti ( M o r n i n g ) joins t h e Lokāloka accepted by t h e s u n * ( ? ) Therefore, they call it Sandhyā (Twilight). U s ā is remember­ ed as n i g h t a n d Vyusfi is r e m e m b e r e d as the day, by the Brāhmanas T h e demons were bent on devouring the sun a n d t h e fire at the time of dusk. A curse was cast on these wicked persons at t h e instance of P r a j ā p a t i . (They h a d ) Aksayalva ( t h e state of imperishability) of t h e body b u t they were m a d e to die. T h r e e crores of demons are well known as M a n d e h a s . Every d a y they seek the rising sun. These evil-minded ones wish to d e v o u r the sun t h a t blazes. 112-113. A terrible battle ensued \between the sun-god a n d those demons. T h e r e u p o n , the Devas, the most excellent B r ā h m a n a s and god B r a h m a performed t h e Sandhyā-prayer a n d poured water charged with the M a n t r a s of G ā y a t r i along with O m k ā r a (the symbol of) B r a h m a n . 114-115. W i t h a sudden flash of splendour t h e n t h e sun shone w i t h fierce rays. He b e c a m e excessively resplendent with great strength a n d valour. Protected by t h e B r ā h m a n a s , he rises a h u n d r e d thousand Yojanas upwards a n d proceeds a h e a d . Protected by t h e sages Vālakhilyas a n d his brilliance along with his rays ( h e is held aloft.) 116. Fifteen Nimesas constitute one K ā s t h ā . T h i r t y K ā s t h ā s make one K a l ā . T h i r t y Kalās make a M u h ū r t a a n d t h i r t y such M u h ū r t a s m a k e a full day consisting of day and night. * V ā P. gives a better reading : sūryab, parigraham i.e.

It is the sun w h o

joins a n d therefore the period is called S a n d h y ā ( t h e joining p e r i o d ) . Or : As it j o i n s together Lokāloka which surrounds the sun, it is S a n d h y ā (the c o n n e c t i n g link between light a n d darkness). It is the period b e t w e e n us as ( d a w n ) a n d the morning.

called interim


Brahmānda Purāna

208

117-123. T h e shortening or the lengthening of days by means of units of time h a p p e n s duly. T h e S a n d h y ā ( j u n c t i o n ) spreads over a period of a M u h ū r t a . It is r e m e m b e r e d as t h e limit for the shortening or lengthening of the days. Rising from t h e circle of the horizon, when the sun traverses for a period of three M u h ū r t a s , t h a t is r e m e m ­ bered as F o r e n o o n . 1 It is a fifth of t h e d a y t i m e . T h e period of time of three M u h ū r t a s after the forenoon is called Sañgava. T h e period of three M u h ū r t a s from Sañgava is called Madhyāhna ( M i d d a y ) . T h e period of three M u h ū r t a s from the m i d d a y is remembered as Aparāhna ( A f t e r n o o n ) . A period of three M u h ū r t a s alone is r e m e m b e r e d by scholars as the unit of t i m e , (A p e r i o d of three M u h ū r t a s ) after the Aparāhna is called Sāyāhna ( E v e n i n g ) . T h e r e a r e only three (sacred ?) M u h ū r t a s in a d a y of fifteen M u h ū r t a s . It is r e m e m b e r e d t h a t an equinotical day has fifteen M u h ū r t a s . D u r i n g the southern transit a n d the n o r t h e r n transit, the nights and days increase a n d decrease. T h e d a y swallows the night and t h e night swallows the d a y . 124. T h e equinox is expected to be in t h e m i d d l e of the A u t u m n a n d the Spring. T h e m o o n has e q u a l n u m b e r o f Kalās in the night a n d day. 125. A period of fifteen days is m e n t i o n e d as a P a k s a (fortnight). T w o Paksas m a k e a m o n t h a n d two solar mo nt hs m a k e a season. 126-129. T h r e e seasons (make one A y a n a ) , a n d two Ayanas m a k e a solar Year. (Defective T e x t ) . Nimesas are Vidyutas2*. Fifteen of t h e m m a k e a K ā s t h ā . T h i r t y K ā s t h ā s make a K a l ā (?) It consists of one h u n d r e d a n d sixty M ā t r ā s . T h i r t y M ā t r a s increased by two a n d seven consist of thirtysix of the latter ( ? ) . W i t h sixtytwo a n d seventythree M ā t r ā s constitute K a l ā . It has forty thousand a n d eight h u n d r e d 1.

T h e s e verses state the five parts of the day, e a c h part b e i n g of three

Muhūrtas in duration. 2.

It appears that a n e w term called Vidyut is introduced in the units

of T i m e here, *Vā.P.50.179 reads ;nimesādi krtah Kālah "The time covered ling of the e y e 'etc'.

by twink­


209

1.2.21.130-137

Vid.yv.ts. T h e y a r e seventy (?) K n o w for certain t h a t they a r e ninety. T h e y say t h a t t h e r e a r e four h u n d r e d ' a n d t w o Vidyuts ( ? ) 130. T h i s should be considered as t h e excellent p a r t . N ā d i k ā G h a t i ( 2 4 minutes) is t h e cause hereof. T h e five (units of time beginning with Sarhvatsara are diversified, d u e to four 1 measures (?) (See verse 137). 131-132. T h e decisive basic u n i t of all time is called 2 Yuga ( A g e ) . T h e first year is Sarhvatsara. T h e second is Parivatsara. T h e third is I d ā v a t s a r a . T h e fourth is A n u v a t sara. T h e fifth is V a t s a r a . T h e i r period of time is called Y u g a . 133-134. In a solar Yuga, there shall be three t h o u s a n d (lit. t h i r t y h u n d r e d ) Parvans (junctions) a n d one t h o u s a n d eight h u n d r e d a n d thirty risings of t h e sun (i.e. days.) T h e r e shall be t h i r t y R t u s a n d ten Ayanas (Defective T e x t ) . T h e r e a r e t h r e e h u n d r e d a n d sixtyfive days ( 5 + 3 0 0 + 6 0 ) in a solar year. 135. T h i r t y units of days a n d nights m a k e one solar m o n t h . Sixtyone such days m a k e one R t u . 136. T h e extent of a solar Ayana is eightythree days.

one h u n d r e d a n d

137. T h e following a r e the four measures (for c a l c u l a t i n g time) viz.: Saura (Solar), Saumya ( L u n a r ) , JVāksatra (sidereal) a n d Sāvana (based on S a v a n a calculation of days from sunrise to s u n s e t ) . T h e s e measures a r e decisively mentioned in the Purānas.

1.

V. 137 gives the four measures of systems in calculating time

(or

year) viz. Saura (Solar), Saumya (Lunar), Nāksatra (sidereal). 2. This Purāna records the age-old tradition that the Y u g a period consisted of five years. Even in the Vedic times Y u g a was of five years and the names of those five years (with a slight variations in the n a m e Idāvatsara viz. Idā-ldu—Vatsara) are the same as given here (vide Tai.S.V.7.1-3, Vāj.S.27.45, Atharva VI 5 5 . 3 ) . Tai. Br. I. 4 . 1 0 . 1 identifies Sarhvatsara, Parivatsara etc. with god Agni, Aditya etc. K a u t i l y a in ArthaSāUra II Ch. 20 in measures of time declares "A Yuga consists of five years" (Pañca-Sarhvatsaro Tugam). This. Purāna records the same.


210

Brahmanda Purāna

138. T h e r e is a m o u n t a i n n a m e d Srńgavān towards t h e n o r t h of t h e Śveta. It has three peaks w h i c h a p p e a r to touch t h e surface of t h e firmament. 139. T h a t m o u n t a i n is said to be Śrńgavān, due to those peaks. Its girth a n d sectional d i a m e t e r a r e equally glori­ fied (? are t h e s a m e ) . 140. Its m i d d l e a n d eastern peak is golden. T h e southern peak has crystal-like lustre a n d it is m a d e of silver. 141. T h e excellent n o r t h e r n peak is full of all kinds of jewels. T h u s , d u e to t h e t h r e e peaks, t h e m o u n t a i n is well known as Ś r ń g a v ā n . 142. D u r i n g t h e time in between t h e A u t u m n a n d t h e Spring, t h e sun proceeds with a m e d i u m speed a n d he resorts to its eastern peak. 143. H e n c e , the dispeller of darkness makes t h e day a n d night equal. Divine green-coloured horses are yoked to his great chariot. T h e y a p p e a r as though they are smeared with t h e rays red as lotus. 144. To t h e close of Mesa a n d Tula, t h e d u r a t i o n of t h e d a y from sunrise to sunset is fifteen M u h ū r t a s . T h e night is also equally long. 145. W h e n the sun enters the first degree or p a r t of the constellation Krttikā, it should be known t h a t t h e moon enters t h e fourth p a r t of the constellation Viśākhā. 146. W h e n t h e sun moves t h r o u g h t h e third p a r t of t h e constellation Viśākhā, it should be known t h a t t h e moon has occupied the top of t h e constellation K r t t i k ā . 147-149. T h e great sages say t h a t one should know t h a t time as Visuva ( E q u i n o x ) . O n e should u n d e r s t a n d t h e equinox t h r o u g h t h e position of t h e sun a n d should see the time t h r o u g h the m o o n . W h e n t h e d a y a n d t h e n i g h t are o f equal d u r a t i o n , it shall be t h e Visuva. T h e n d u r i n g t h e equinox, religious gifts should be offered to t h e m a n e s a n d to t h e B r ā h m a n a s parti­ c u l a r l y "because it h a p p e n s to be t h e face of gods. 150. ( T h e following a r e to be known in connection with t h e various units of t i m e ) : t h e y are Ūnamāsa ( m o n t h of a s h o r t e r d u r a t i o n ) , Adhimāsa ( I n t e r c a l a r y l u n a r m o n t h ) , K a l ā , K ā s t h ā , M u h ū r t a k a , P a u r n a m ā s ī (full m o o n ) , Amāvasyā ( N e w


1.2.21.151 154

211

m o o n ) , Sinīvālī, K u h ū (different kinds of new m o o n ) , R ā k ā a n d 1 A n u m a t i (kinds of full m o o n d a y ) . 151. T h e months of M ā g h a , P h ā l g u n a , C a i t r a , Vaiśākha, J y e s t h a a n d A s ā d h a constitute U t t a r ā y a n a ( N o r t h e r n t r a n s i t ) . T h e m o n t h s of Śrāvana, B h ā d r a p a d a , Aśvina, K ā r t t i k a , M ā r g a śīrsa a n d P a u s a constitute D a k s i n ā y a n a . 2 152-154. T h e five years called Ārtavas should be as t h e sons of B r a h m a .

known

H e n c e , the Rtus should be known. T h e y are r e m e m b e r e d as Ārtavas on account of t h e Rtus. H e n c e , from this Parvan, Amāvāsyā should be known as having Rtus as its face. H e n c e , from this Parvan, the Visuva should be known. It is always con­ ducive to t h e welfare of the Devas a n d t h e Pitrs. O n e should n o t lose sense regarding rites concerning t h e Pitrs a n d the Devas, after knowing t h e P a r v a n .

1.

T h e Amāvāsyā (the n e w m o o n d a y )

m i x e d with

the 14th

Tithi

is Sinivāli a n d that w h i c h merges with the 1st Tithi of the next fortnight is K u h ū . It is treated as a divinity a n d invoked for wealth and Sons,

(vide

Atharva V I I 4 7 . 1 ) . According t o Nirukta X I 29, Paurnamāsi (the full m o o n d a y ) m i x e d with the 14th tithi is Anumati, while that mixed

w i t h the 1st d a y

of the next fortnight is Rākā. In vedic times it was worshipped for a rich and f a m o u s son. 2.

This verse records the ancient n a m e s of the m o n t h s w i t h

which

modern n a m e s Caitra, Vaiśākha c a m e to be identified. For the convenience of readers the modern n a m e s are g i v e n

in

translation.

The

of ancient a n d modern names of the months is as follow: OUTerm

New

Term

Tapas

Māgha

Tapasya

Phālguna

Madhu

Caitra

Mādhava Śukra

Vaiśākha Jyestha

śuci

Asādha

Nabhas

Śrāvana

Nabhasya

Bhādrapada

Isu

Aśvina

Orja

Kārttika

Sahas

Mārgaśirsa

Sahasya

Pausa

correspondence


Brahmānda Purāna

212

155. H e n c e , Visuva t h a t is present everywhere (?) is al­ ways r e m e m b e r e d by t h e subjects. T h e ( m o u n t a i n ) Lokāloka is called so because t h e world is r e m e m b e r e d on account of (?) its being illuminated ( b y t h e s u n ) . 156. T h e guardians of the q u a r t e r s are stationed in t h e middle of the Lokāloka. Those four (?) noble-souled guardians r e m a i n till t h e a n n i h i l a t i o n of all living beings. 157. T h e y are S u d h ā m ā , Vairāja, K a r d a m a , Ś a ń k h a p ā , H i r a n y a r o m a n , Parjanya, K e t u m ā n a n d Rājasa. ( P e r h a p s they are in pairs a n d hence called four ? ) . 158. T h e y are free from Dvandvas ( m u t u a l l y opposed pairs) and false prides. T h e y are boundless a n d free from parigrahas (acceptances of 'gifts from o t h e r s ) . These guardians of quarters a r e stationed on t h e Lokāloka in all t h e four directions. 159. To t h e N o r t h of the star A g a s t y a * a n d to t h e south of Ajavīthī is t h e p a t h w a y called P i t r y ā n a . It is outside t h e path Vaiśvānara. 160. T h e r e stay the sages w h o are endowed with progeny a n d w h o perform A g n i h o t r a sacrifices. Those w h o stay in t h e p a t h of pitryāna are those w h o continue t h e series of worlds ( w h o p e r p e t u a t e t h e lines or r a c e of t h e worlds). 161. T h e southern p a t h is of those w h o , being Rtviks,. c o m m e n c e t h e work of procreation of living beings by t h e i r blessings a n d a r e desirous of t h e world. 162. In every Yuga, they establish D h a r m a t h a t goes astray. T h e y perform austerities. T h e y strictly a d h e r e t o t h e bounds (of d e c e n c y ) a n d pursue t h e a r t of learning. 163. H e r e , in this world t h e predecessors a r e b o r n in t h e houses of t h e successors (those w h o c o m e after) a n d t h e successors are b o r n on t h e d e a t h of t h e predecessors. 164. R e p e a t e d l y b e i n g b o r n t h u s , they r e m a i n till t h e a n n i h i l a t i o n of all living beings. These sages w h o a r e house­ holders a r e eightyeight t h o u s a n d i n n u m b e r . 165-168a; T h e y resort to t h e s o u t h e r n p a t h of t h e sun as long as t h e m o o n a n d t h e stars are existent. T h i s is t h e t o t a l * Tadapastasya is 'of the star Agastya*.

wrong. V ā . P . 50.209a

reads correcdy yad Agastasya.


1.2.21.168b-176

213

s u m ( i . e . 88000) of those persons w h o perform holy rites a n d •who resorted to t h e c r e m a t i o n grounds. T h e i r r o u t i n e activities in t h e world consist of creation of living beings, activities p r o m p t e d by desire or h a t r e d , indulgence in s e x u a l l n t e r c o u r s e , activities i n d u c e d by lust a n d resorting to sensual objects. T h o s e Siddhas (persons with spiritual a t t a i n m e n t ) w h o resorted to c r e m a t i o n grounds on these or similar grounds a n d those sages w h o seek progeny a r e ( r e - b o r n in t h e D v ā p a r a age. 168b-169. T h e p a t h w a y t h a t is towards the n o r t h of N ā g a v i t h ī a n d to t h e south of t h e g r o u p of seven sages (i.e. t h e G r e a t B e a r ) is t h e n o r t h e r n p a t h of t h e sun. It is r e m e m ­ bered as Devayāna. Those w h o stay t h e r e a r e Siddhas of g r e a t celibacy, free from impurities. 170-173. T h e y contemptuously h a t e progeny. H e n c e , d e a t h is c o n q u e r e d by t h e m . These sages of sublimated sexual urge a r e eightyeight t h o u s a n d in n u m b e r . T h e y closely cling to the n o r t h e r n p a t h , till the a n n i h i l a t i o n of all living beings D u e to their association with t h e world, avoidance of sexual intercourse, abstention from desires a n d hatreds, eschewal of creation of living beings, non-lustful contacts a n d seeing defects in sound etc. (i.e. sensual objects), they have b e c o m e Siddhas. A n d also d u e to various other reasons also. H e n c e they b e c a m e i m m o r t a l . I m m o r t a l i t y is considered to be ( t h e a t t a i n ­ m e n t ) of those w h o stay till t h e a n n i h i l a t i o n of all living beings. 174-175a. T h e y a p p r o a c h their wives once again for t h e s u s t e n a n c e of the three worlds.* O t h e r s of sublimated sexual urge a r e sinners as well as meritorious on a c c o u n t of their killing t h e child in t h e w o m b or performing horse sacrifices. T h e y wither a w a y at t h e end of a n n i h i l a t i o n of all living beings. 175b-76. To t h e n o r t h a n d above the worlds of the sages, w h e r e D h r u v a is r e m e m b e r e d to be present, is t h e divine region ofVisnu, t h e third o n e in t h e firmament. It is t h e shining

* This is strange of those Orddhva-retas sages. V ā . P . 5 0 . 2 2 2 a TTailokya-sthiti-kālo'yam apunarmirgagāminah /

reads:


Brahmānda Purāna

214

world on reaching which no one is affected by sorrow or p a i n . It is the greatest region of V i s n u w h e r e D h a r m a , D h r u v a a n d o t h e r Sādhakas of t h e world stay.

C H A P T E R

TWENTYTWO*

The Description of the Divine Luminaries Varieties -of clouds: Divisions of Stratosphere : The chariot of the Sun-God Sūta said : 1. All t h e Antaras (i.e. M a n v a n t a r a s ) d u r i n g t h e creation of S v ā y a m b h u v a have b e e n r e c o u n t e d . I shall r e c o u n t all t h e future ones in d u e order. 2. On h e a r i n g this, the sages asked R o m a h a r s a n a a b o u t t h e m o v e m e n t of the S u n , t h e M o o n a n d t h e planets. The sages said : 3-4. " H o w do these luminaries revolve in t h e strato­ sphere w i t h o u t a n y clash or confusion or without a n y structural formation? Does any one m a k e t h e m revolve or do they re­ volve of their own accord? O excellent one, we wish to under­ stand this. N a r r a t e this u n t o us. Sūta said : 5. This is something t h a t confounds all living beings. U n d e r s t a n d this even as I tell you. A l t h o u g h this is visible and directly p e r c e p t i b l e , it perplexes t h e people. 6. T h e star t h a t (diffuses light) in t h e four quarters and is established at t h e tail of t h e Śiśumāra(i.e. a collection of stars resembling a d o l p h i n or a G a n g e t i c porpoise) is D h r u v a , •This chapter corresponds to V ā . P . Ch. 5 1 .


215

1.2.22.7-15 1