The story of slaying Dhumralochana, Chaṇḍa, Muṇḍa and Raktabija – Sri Durga Saptashati (Chapter 6, 7 & 8)
The story of slaying Dhmralochana, Chaṇḍa, Muṇḍa and Raktabija – Sri Durga Saptashati (Chapter 6, 7 & 8)
On hearing the message of Shumbha, the King of Daityas, to resort him or his younger brother, conveyed by the messenger the Mahamaya, the goddess informed him her vow that She shall endeavour to make one alone as her husband who can shake off her pride, who can conquer her in the battle. No one else.
Death of Dhumralochana (Chapter 6):
On hearing these words of the goddess, the Asura Sugriva returned to his king and acquainted him with every detail. On hearing the report of the messenger Shumbha of stern rule angrily said to Dhumralochana, the foremost of his generals. O Dhumralochana, there is a beautiful lady on the snow-capped Himalaya Mountain. Go quickly and fetch her here. O excellent Asura, do not be afraid of this expedition. If she wishes to fight, you shall fight strenuously.
Thus, directed the Daitya Dhumralochana went to Himalaya and spoke to the goddess who was a part of Uma. “O lady, approach my lord. Otherwise, I shall kill you. I am accompanied by sixty thousand Asuras”.
The goddess said: — “O hero, yon are commissioned by the king of Daityas. If you kill me, what can I do for you? But I consider it impossible to go without a fight.” Thus, addressed, the Danava Dhumralochana rushed at her but was burnt with a mere Hunkara uttered by her. Since then, that goddess is called Dhumavati in the world. When propitiated she destroys hosts of enemies of her devotees. After Dhunirakṣa was killed, his army was crunched and munched by the infuriated lion. Those who were spared fled away.
Death of Chanda & Munda (Chapter 7):
On hearing that the Daitya was killed by the goddess, the valorous Shumbha was angry and bit his lips. He sent the Asuras—Chaṇḍa & Muṇḍa. The Daityas, thus ordered, went to the spot where Ambika was stationed. On seeing the goddess seated on a lion, possessed of Aṇima and other Siddhis and dazzling the quarters with her brilliance, the leading Danavas said. “O lady, hasten to approach Shumbha and Nishumbha. Otherwise, we shall kill you along with your Gaṇas and your lion. O lady, choose him as your husband. He is eulogized by the guardians of the quarters and others. You will attain a great bliss rare to attain by the gods.”
On hearing these words, the goddess Amba smiled and spoke interesting and truthful words. Lord Shiva, the great Brahman, the eternal god is without a second. Even the Vedas do not understand his reality. What then of Vishnu and others? I am His subtle Prakriti. How can I choose another as my husband? Even if she is overwhelmed by love does a lioness choose a jackal as her mate? Descend to Patalla all of you. If you have the power, fight.”
On hearing her provocative words, the Asuras said to one another. “We do not kill you as you are a woman. But if you desire for battle, be ready with your lion.” While they spoke thus the fight ensued. The arrows rained in the battle., sharp arrows from either side.
There at Ambika uttered her wrath aloud against those foes, and her countenance then grew dark as ink in her wrath. Out from the surface of her forehead, which was rugged with frowns, issued suddenly Kali of the terrible countenance, armed with a sword and noose, bearing a many-coloured skull-topped staff, decorated with a garland of skulls, clad in a tiger’s skin, very appalling because of her emaciated flesh, exceedingly wide of mouth, lolling out her tongue terribly, having deep-sunk reddish eyes, and filling the regions of the sky with her roars. She fell upon the great Asuras impetuously, dealing slaughter among the host, and devoured that army of the gods’ foes there. Taking up the elephants with one hand she flung them into her mouth, together with their rear men and drivers and their warrior-riders and bells. Flinging likewise warrior with his horses, and chariot with its driver into her mouth, she ground them most frightfully with her teeth. She seized one by the hair, and another by the neck; and she kicked another with her foot. And she seized with her mouth the weapons and the great arms which those Asuras abandoned and crunched them up with her teeth in her fury. She crushed all that host of mighty and high-spirited Asuras; and devoured some and battered others; some were slain with her sword, some were struck with her skull-topped staff, and other Asuras met their death being wounded with the edge of her teeth.
Seeing all that host of Asuras laid low in a moment, Chaṇḍa rushed against her, Kali, who was exceedingly appalling. Muṇḍa the great Asura covered her, the terrible-eyed goddess, with very terrible showers of arrows and with discuses hurled in thousands. Those discuses seemed to be penetrating her countenance in multitudes, like as very many solar orbs might penetrate the body of a thundercloud. There at Kali, who was roaring frightfully, laughed terribly with excessive fury, showing the gleam of her unsightly teeth within her dreadful mouth. And the goddess, mounting upon her great lion, rushed at Chaṇḍa, and seizing him by his hair struck off his head with her sword. And Muṇḍa also rushed at her when he saw Chaṇḍa laid low; him also she felled to the ground, stricken with her scimitar in her fury. Then the army, so much as escaped unslain, seeing Chaṇḍa laid low and most valiant Muṇḍa also, seized with panic fled in all directions.
And Kali, holding Chaṇḍa’s head and Muṇḍa also, approached Chaṇḍika and said, her voice mingled with passionate loud laughter— “Here I have brought thee Chaṇḍa and Muṇḍa, two great beasts; thou thyself shalt slay Shumbha and Nishumbha in the battle-sacrifice.”
Thereon, seeing those two great Asuras Chaṇḍa and Muṇḍa brought to her, auspicious Chaṇḍika spoke to Kali this witty speech, “Because thou hast seized both Chaṇḍa and Muṇḍa and brought them, you, O goddess, shalt therefore be famed in the world by the name Chamuṇḍa!”
Death of Raktabija (Chaper 8):
After both the Daitya Chaṇḍa was slain and Muṇḍa was laid low, and many soldiers were destroyed, the lord of the Asuras, majestic Shumbha, with mind overcome by wrath, gave command then to array all the Daitya hosts,—“Now let the eighty-six Daityas, upraising their weapons, march forth with all their forces; let the eighty-four Kambus march forth surrounded by their own forces; let the fifty Asura families who excel in valour go forth; let the hundred families of Dhaumri go forth at my command. Let the Kalakas, the Daurhṛtas, the Mauryas, and the Kalakeyas, — let these Asuras, hastening at my command, march forth ready for battle.”
After issuing these commands Shumbha, the lord of the Asuras, who ruled with fear, went forth, attended by many thousands of great soldiers. Chaṇḍika, seeing that most terrible army at hand, filled the space between the earth and the firmament with the twanging of her bowstring. Thereon her lion roared exceedingly loud, O king; and Ambika augmented those roars with the clanging of her bell. Kali, filling the regions of the sky with the noise from her bowstring, from her lion and from her bell, and expanding her mouth wide with her terrific roars, had the predominance. On hearing that roar which filled the four regions of the sky, the Daitya armies enraged surrounded the goddess’ lion and Kali.
At this moment, to destroy the gods’ foes, and for the well-being of the lion-like Immortals, there issued forth endowed with excessive vigour and strength the Energies from the bodies of Brahma, Shiva, Guha and Vishnu and of Indra also, and went in the forms of those gods to Chaṇḍika. Whatever was the form of each god, and whatever his ornaments and vehicle, in that very appearance his Energy advanced to fight with the Asuras. In the front of a heavenly car drawn by swans advanced Brahma’s Energy, bearing a rosary of seeds and an earthen water-pot; she is called Brahmani. Mahesvara’s Energy, seated on a bull, grasping a fine trident, and wearing a girdle of large snakes, arrived, adorned with a digit of the moon. And Kumara’s Energy, Ambika, with spear in hand and riding on a choice peacock, advanced in Guha’s shape to attack the Daityas. Likewise, Vishnu’s Energy, seated upon Garuḍa, advanced with conch, discus, club, bow and scimitar in hand. The Energy of Hari, who assumes the peerless form of a sacrificial boar, she also advanced assuming a hog-like form. Narsimha’s Energy assuming a body like Narsimha’s arrived there, adorned with a cluster of constellations hurled down by the tossing of his mane. Likewise, Indra’s Energy, with thunderbolt in hand, seated upon the lord of elephants and having a thousand eyes, arrived; as is Shakra, such indeed was she. Then those Energies of the gods surrounded Shiva. He said to Chaṇḍika, “Let the Asuras be slain forthwith through my good-will.”
Thereupon from the goddess’ body there came forth Chaṇḍika’s Energy, most terrific, exceedingly fierce, howling like a hundred jackals. And she the unconquered said to Shiva, who was smoke-coloured and had matted locks, “Be you, my lord, a messenger to the presence of Shumbha and Nishumbha. Say unto the two overweening Danavas, Shumbha and Nishumbha, and to whatever other Danavas are assembled there to do battle— ‘Let Indra obtain the three worlds, let the gods be the enjoyers of the oblations; go to Patala if ye wish to live. Yet if through pride in your strength ye are longing for battle, come ye on then! let my jackals be glutted with your flesh.” Because the goddess appointed Shiva himself to be ambassador, she has hence attained fame as Shivaduti in this world.
Those great Asuras however, on hearing the goddess’ speech fully announced, were filled with indignation, and went where Katyayani stood. Then, at the very first, the arrogant and indignant foes of the Immortals in front poured on the goddess showers of arrows, javelins, and spears. And gracefully she clove those arrows, darts, discuses and axes, which were hurled, with large arrows shot from her resounding bow. And in front of her stalked Kali then, tearing the foes asunder with the onset of her darts and crushing them with her skull-topped staff. And Brahmani caused the foes to lose their courage by casting water on them from her earthen pot, and weakened their vigour, by whatever way she ran. Maheshvara’s Energy slew Daityas with her trident, and Vishnu’s Energy with her discus, and Kumara’s Energy, very wrathful, slew them with her javelin. Torn to pieces by the down-rush of the thunderbolt hurled by Indra’s Energy, Daityas and Danavas fell on the earth in hundreds, pouring out streams of blood. Shattered by the hog-embodied Energy with blows from her snout, wounded in their breasts by the points of her tushes, and tom by her discus, demons fell. And Narsimha’s Energy roamed about in the battle, devouring other great Asuras who were torn by her claws, as she filled the intermediate region of the sky with her roaring. Asuras, demoralized by Shivaduti with her violent loud laughs, fell on the earth; she then devoured those fallen ones. Seeing the enraged band of Mothers crushing the great Asuras thus by various means, the troops of the gods’ foes perished.
Raktavija, a great Asura, seeing the Daityas, who were hard-pressed by the band of Mothers, intent on fleeing, strode forward to fight in wrath. When from his body there falls to the ground a drop of blood, at that moment starts up from the earth an Asura of his stature. He, a great Asura, with club in hand fought with Indra’s Energy, and Indra’s Energy then struck Raktavija with her thunderbolt; blood flowed quickly from him when wounded by the thunderbolt. Thereupon stood up together fresh combatants, like him in body, like him in valour; for as many blood-drops fell from his body, so many men came into being, like him in courage, strength, and valour. And those men also who sprang from his blood fought there with the mothers in a combat, dreadful because of the sweep of their very sharp weapons. And again, when his head was wounded by the fall of her thunderbolt, his blood poured forth; therefrom were born men by thousands. And Vishnu’s Energy struck at this foe with her discus in the battle. Indra’s Energy beat that lord of the Asuras with her club. The world was filled by the thousands of great Asuras, who were his equals, and who sprang from the blood that flowed from him when cloven by the discus of Vishnu’s Energy. Kumara’s Energy struck the great Asura Raktavija with her spear, and Varaha’s Energy also struck him with her sword, and Mabeshvara’s Energy with her trident. And the Daitya Raktavija, that great Asura, filled full of wrath, struck every one of the mothers in turn with his club. By the stream of blood, which fell on the earth from him when he received many wounds from the spears, darts, and other weapons, Asuras came verily into being in hundreds. And those Asuras who sprang from that Asura’s blood pervaded the whole world; there at the gods fell into the utmost terror. Seeing the gods dejected, Chaṇḍika spoke with haste; she said to Kali, “O Chamuṇḍa! stretch out thy mouth wide; with this mouth do thou quickly take in the great Asuras, which are the drops of blood, that have come into being out of Raktavija at the descent of my weapon on him. Roam about in the battle, devouring the great Asuras who sprang from him; so, shall this Daitya with his blood ebbing away meet destruction. These fierce demons are being devoured by thee and at the same time no others will be produced.”
Having enjoined her thus, the goddess next smote him with her dart. Kali swallowed Raktavija’s blood with her mouth. Then he struck Chaṇḍika with his club there; and the blow of his club caused her no pain, even the slightest, but from his stricken body blood flowed copiously, and from whatever direction it came, Chamuṇḍa takes it then with her mouth. The great Asuras, who sprang up from the flow of blood in her mouth, Chamuṇḍa both devoured them and quaffed his blood. The goddess smote Raktavija with her dart, her thunderbolt, arrows, swords and spears, when Chauṇḍa drank up his blood. Stricken with that multitude of weapons, he fell on the earth’s surface, and the great Asura Raktavija became blood-less, O king. There at the thirty gods gained joy unparalleled, O king. The band of Mothers which sprang from them broke into a dance, being intoxicated with blood.
Thus, fighting with them sportively the goddess slew the Asuras along with Chaṇḍa and Muṇḍa. Though they had an inimical feeling these enemies of the gods attained in the end that world which her followers go to. Thereupon the devas attained great joy, O King. The band of Matrs who sprang from them dance, being intoxicated with blood. Here ends the eighth chapter called ‘The Slaying of Raktabija’ of Devi-mahatmya in Markandeya-purana, during the period of Savarni, the Manu.
Incarnation of Ambika and the story of slaying of army of Mahishasura and Mahishasura – Sri Durga Saptashati (Chapter 2 & 3)
There was a demon Rambha who was the crest-jewel of the race of Daityas. From him was born Mahiṣhasura the Danava of great splendour. That king of Danavas defeated all the gods in battle and ruled over the kingdom of heaven seated on the throne of lord Indra. The defeated gods sought refuge in Brahma. With them Brahma went to the place where Vishnu and Shiva were present. After reaching there and bowing to Shiva and Vishnu the gods narrated all their woeful tale in the proper order. That they are harassed by the wicked Mahiṣa. We have been ousted from heaven after our defeat in the battlefield. We are wandering in this world of mortals without peace or happiness anywhere. O what pitiable plights we—Indra and others—have been led to! The sinful Asura who has offered freedom from fear to the partisans of the Daityas, himself performs the ordained task of these—viz, the sun, the moon, Varuṇa, Kubera, Yama, Indra, Agni, wind, the Gandharvas, Vidyadharas and the good Charaṇas and others as well. Hence, it behoves you to save us the gods who have sought refuge in you. O lords, please think of the means of killing him immediately.
Incarnation of Ambika:
On hearing the gods, Vishnu and Shiva were very angry. Their eyes rolled through anger. Then a great splendour issued forth from the mouths of the infuriated Vishnu and Shiva and from the bodies of other gods. The gods who were devoted to meditation on Durga saw the mass of splendour blazing in all the ten directions. That highly terrible splendour issuing forth from the bodies of the gods joined together and became a woman Mahiṣamardini herself. Her dazzlingly brilliant face constituted the splendour of Shiva, the hairs the splendour of Yama and the arms the splendour of Vishnu. Her breasts were formulated by the splendour of the moon; the waist by that of Indra; the calves and thighs by that of Varuṇa; the hips by that of the earth; the feet by that of Brahma; the toes by that of the sun; the fingers by that of Indra; the nose by that of Kubera; the teeth by that of the patriarch; the eyes by that of fire; the eyebrows by that of the dusk; the ears by that of the wind, her other limbs by that of other heaven-dwellers. Thus, the goddess manifested herself on the lotus-seat. On seeing her thus formulated by the mass of splendour of the gods, they attained great delight.
Observing that she had no weapons, Brahma and other gods decided to make her fully equipped with weapons. Then Shiva offered her a spear; Vishnu gave her a discus; Varuṇa conch and noose. The fire-God gave her Shakti; the wind-god a bow arid a quiver full of arrows; Indra the thunderbolt and a bell; Yama a big staff; Prajapati a garland of beads; Brahma a water-pot and the sun the lustrous hair. Kala gave her a sword and a shining shield, the milk ocean a beautiful necklace, two fresh pieces of cloth, the crest-jewel, ear-rings, bangles, crescent-shaped ornaments, beautiful anklets, shoulder-pieces, a necklace and finger-rings. Visvakarma gave her a beautiful axe and the ocean various weapons, an impenetrable armour, a beautiful garland, and a lotus. Himavat gave her a lion and gems of various sorts. Kubera a vessel filled with wine. Shesha a Nagahara of wonderful workmanship, studded with various precious gems. Thus honoured, the goddess with these and other similar objects, ornaments, weapons etc. shouted again and again.
Slaying of Army of Mahishasura:
The sky was filled with her terrible noise that echoed tremendously and made the three worlds agitated. The four oceans shook and rolled. The earth quaked. Cries of victory were shouted by “the gods harassed by Mahiṣa. Then the gods eulogized the great Shakti, Ambika in the form of Mahalakṣmi with words choked with devotion.
On seeing the world agitated, the enemies of the gods got up with uplifted arms and with their armies ready for war. The infuriated Mahiṣa rushed at the direction of the sound and saw the goddess who had pervaded the three worlds with her beautiful lustre. In the meantime, crores of great heroes led by Mahiṣhasura came there with weapons. Chikṣura, Chamara, Udagra, Karala, Uddhaṭa, Bhaṣkala; Tamra, Ugrasya, Ugravirya, Biḍala, Andhaka, Durdhara, Durmukha, Trinetra Mahahanu—these and many others, heroic and efficient in battle, came there. the Asura Mahiṣa’s general, Chikṣura, fought with her; and the Asura Chamara attended by his cavalry fought along with others. The great Asura named Udagia with six myriads of chariots fought; and Mahahanu with a thousand myriads gave battle; and the great Asura Asiloman with fifty million; with six hundred myriads Yaskala fought in the battle; Ugradarsana with many troops of thousands of elephants and horses and surrounded with ten million chariots fought in that battle; and the Asura named Viḍala fought in the battle there, surrounded with fifty myriads of myriads of chariots. And other great Asuras in myriads, surrounded with chariots, elephants, and horses, fought with the goddess in that battle there. Now the Asura Mahiṣa was surrounded with thousands of ten million times ten million of chariots and elephants and horses in the battle there. With iron maces and javelins, with spears and clubs, with swords, with axes and halberds they fought in the battle against the goddess. They, the masters of weapons and missiles, fought with the goddess in the battle a terribly long time elapsed.
Different weapons and missiles hurled by the hosts of enemies were rendered futile instantaneously by the power of the goddess. Then the goddess hit and struck the hosts of enemies Gikṣura and others with her club, arrows, spear, Shakti, and axe.
The general Chikṣura, seeing that army being slaughtered, advanced in wrath to fight with Ambika. The Asura rained a shower of arrows on the goddess in the battle. The goddess, cutting asunder the masses of his arrows then as it were in play, smote his horses with her arrows and their charioteer; and split his bow forthwith and his banner raised high aloft; and with swift missiles pierced his limbs as he stood with shattered bow. His bow shattered, his chariot useless, his horses killed, his charioteer slain, the Asura armed with sword and shield rushed at the goddess. With the utmost celerity he smote the lion on the head with his sharp-edged sword and struck the goddess also on her left arm. His sword shivered to pieces as it touched her arm (O prince). Thereon red-eyed with anger, he grasped his pike, and he, the great Asura, flung it at Bhadrakali, as it were the Sun’s orb blazing brightly with its splendour from out the sky. Seeing that pike falling on her, the goddess hurled her pike, and it shattered that pike into a hundred fragments and the great Asura also.
When Mahiṣa’s very valiant general, was slain, Chamara, the afflicter of the thirty gods, advanced mounted on an elephant; and he also hurled his spear at the goddess. Down to the ground Ambika quickly struck it, assailed with a contemptuous hoot and rendered lustre-less. Seeing his spear broken and fallen, Chamara filled with rage flung a pike; and that she split with her arrows. Then the lion leaping up fastened on to the hollow of the elephant’s forehead and fought in close combat aloft with that foe of the thirty gods; but both then fell, as they were fighting, from the elephant to the ground. They fought closely locked together with most terrible blows. Then quickly springing up to the sky, and descending, the lion severed Chamara’s head with a blow from his paw.
And Udagra was slain in battle by the goddess with stones, trees, and other things, and Karala also was stricken down by her teeth and fists and feet. And the goddess enraged ground Uddhata to powder with blows from her club; and killed Yaskala with a dart, Tamra and Andhaka with arrows. And the supreme three-eyed goddess slew Ugrasya and Ugravirya and Mahahanu also with her trident. With her sword she struck Viḍala’s head clean down from his body. She despatched both Durdhara and Durmukha to Yama’s abode with her arrows.
When his armies fell the demon Mahiṣa struggled with the hosts of soldiers that issued from the breath of the goddess. He kicked some with the hoofs, hit some with the horns and others with his tail and snout. After slaying the Gaṇas the chief of Asuras rushed at the lion of the goddess to kill it. Then she became wrathful. He of great virility thrashed the ground with his hoofs, uprooted a mountain with his horns, hurled it and shouted. Heavy mountains hurled by him as he rushed all rounds fell in the battleground from the sky. Clouds split by his horns were shattered to pieces. The ocean struck at with his tail throbbed and splashed water beyond the shores all round.
Slaying of Mahishasura:
On seeing the demon Mahiṣa thus infuriated, Ambika, the protectress of the gods, became ready to kill him. She took up a noose and hurled it at him. She bound the Asura Mahiṣa. Then the demon abandoned his assumed guise. Wielding Maya, he became a lion. Soon as Ambika tried to cut off his head, he became armed with a sword. She then struck him with the arrows, as he stood there with the sword and shield. He then became an elephant and struck at the lion with his trunk. The goddess cut off his hand with her sword. The demon then assumed his original form. He then agitated three worlds including the mobile and immobile beings. Then, Chaṇḍika of great honour and exploit became infuriated. She drank the beverage again and again. With eyes rolling she laughed aloud. The haughty Asura too, proud of his strength and exploit, roared. He uprooted the mountains and hurled them at her. She too reduced them to powder and struck them with arrows. With her face reddened because of the inebriation after drinking wine, and with her senses excited, she spoke in a tone as majestic as the rumbling of the clouds.
The goddess said: — “O stupid fellow, O demon of ruined intellect, why are you stubborn in vain? None of the Asuras in the three worlds can stand before me”. Thus, saying the goddess pounced on him, stamped on his neck, and pierced him with her fierce spear. Pressed with her foot and overwhelmed by her might the Asura seemed as good as half dead. Still, he continued to fight. His head was cut off with the sword and he was felled down on the ground. Crying “Alas! Alas” loudly, his followers, afraid of the battle fled from the scene shouting, “Save us, O save us”.
The god Indra and others eulogized the goddess. The Gandharvas sang songs; the celestial damsels danced.
Nothing is impossible for the Ma Ambika. Even tremendous size of army of Mahishasura and stupendous power of Mahishasura could not stay before Ma Ambika.
Medha muni narrated the story of Durga Saptashati to the King and Vaishya. In chapter -1, he told the story of slaying of Madhu & Kaitabha by Ma Mahakali and Her worship done by Brahma ji to save him from the demons. The story goes as under:
Formerly in the Svarochiṣha Manvantara there was a king Suratha who was of great strength and exploit. He was very munificent, truthful, efficient in duties, a devotee of the goddess, an ocean of kindness and the protector of his subjects. Other kings became desirous of seizing his land. They laid siege to his capital Kola. The king had a terrible war with them. That king was defeated by his powerful enemies in the war. His kingdom was seized, and he was banished from his city Kola. The king went to another city of his along with his ministers. There too he was defeated by his enemies who had a large following. His ministers and officers became inimical to him due to adverse fate. They took away all the wealth from the treasury. The king left his city pretending to go out for hunting. Alone he got up on a horse and went to the dense forest.
Going about here and there, the king saw the hermitage of a great sage. It was shining all round with flower gardens. Everywhere the sound of Vedic hymns was heard. All the animals there were quiet and peaceful. The disciples and the disciples of their disciples moved here and there. Tigers and other ferocious and powerful animals did not harass the animals of less strength in that hermitage, thanks to the power of the leading brahmin. The king who was very kind and learned was welcomed and honored by the leading sage with pleasing words, accommodation and food and stayed there.
Once the king began to think anxiously — “Alas, my kingdom has been seized by my haughty enemies. I am unfortunate. My intellect is confounded. I have lost my splendor. The kingdom which had been well guarded by my ancestors is now enjoyed by my enemies. There was no king in this family as weak as I. What shall I do? Where shall I go? How shall I get the kingdom back? My hereditary ministers and counsellors have left me. I do not know which king they serve now. I do not know what plight they are in, after the ruination of the kingdom. My heroic soldiers, very enthusiastic in the battle, slayers of enemies, now serve another king. Huge elephants like mountains, horses fast as wind have gone away. Is the traditional treasury accumulated by my ancestors well-guarded or not? Thus, the very virtuous king became much deluded.
In the meantime, a Vaishya came there. The king asked him— “Sir, who are you? Why have you come here? Why do you appear to be very morose and dejected? Please tell me this, now.” On hearing the sweet words of the king, the leading Vaishya named Samadhi shed tears. He spoke to the king in words full of humility and friendship.
The Vaishya said: --
“O king, I am a Vaishya Samadhi, born of a rich family. Out of greed for my wealth I have been abandoned by my wife, sons, and others. I am depressed. O king, I have come here to the forest. I am worried about my sons, grandsons, wife, brothers, their sons, and friends. O lord, ocean of mercy, I am in dark about their welfare.
The king said: --
How is it that you love, even as senseless animals do, those sons and others who are of evil conduct and covetous for wealth and by whom you have been ousted?
The Vaishya said: --
O king, words loaded with substantial sense have been uttered by you. Still my mind is deluded by the tie of love.
The king and the Vaishya, both equally deluded then approached the sage Medhas. The valorous king accompanied by the chief of the Vaishyas bowed his head to the leading Yogi. With palms joined in reverence the king spoke to the sage: — “O holy lord, it behooves you now to dispel our delusion. Abandoned by the royal glory I have resorted to this dense forest. Still, I am not content and happy since my kingdom has been taken away. This Vaishya has been expelled from his house by his people, wife, and others. Still his sense of affinity and kinship with them does not go off. What is the reason hereof? Please say. Wise though we are, our minds are afflicted and agitated by delusion. This is great foolishness.
The sage (Medha muni) said: --
The great Maya in the form of the eternal Shakti is the material cause of the universe. It is this that drags the minds of all and makes them deluded. O lord, Brahma and other gods deluded by this Maya do not realize the truth. What then is the story of men?
The king said: --
O sage, who is that Goddess? Who is that great Maya who fascinates all? How was that goddess born? Please tell me.
The sage said: —
When the whole universe had been one great expanse of water, a vast sea, when Keshava, the king of Yogis, resorted to Yogic slumber and was sleeping on Sheṣhnaga, two Asuras were born of the dirt in the ears of Vishnu. They became notorious on the surface of the world in the names of Madhu and Kaiṭabha. They were terrible with huge bodies. They had the dazzling brilliance of the sun at the time of dissolution They had huge jaw bones. Their faces were hideous with curved fangs. They seemed to devour all the worlds. On seeing the lotus-seated deity in the umbilical lotus of the lord, the two Asuras shouted “Hey, who are you?” and attempted to kill him.
On seeing the two Daityas and observing that Vishnu was still lying in the vast milky ocean, Brahma eulogized Parameswari. Brahma said: --
O Mahamaya, save me, save me, O goddess favorably disposed to those who seek refuge in you, O mother of the universe, save me from these Daityas of hideous features. I bow to the great Maya, the Yogic slumber, Uma, Sati, Kalaratri, Maharatri, Moharatri, greater than the greatest, the mother of the three deities, the eternal, the bestower of the fruits of the cherished desires of the devotees, the protectress of the gods and the ocean of mercy. It is by your power that Brahma creates the world, Vishnu protects it, and Shiva destroys it at the opportune time.
O Mother, you are Svaha, Svadha, Hri, the unalloyed intellect, Tuṣṭi (satisfaction), Puṣṭi (nourishment), Shanti (peace), Kṣanti (forbearance), Kṣudha (hunger) and mercy itself. O mother, you are the Maya of Vishnu, the very consciousness, the great Shakti, Lajja (bashfulness) and Tṛṣṇa (thirst). You are Bhranti (Illusion). You appear in the form of Smṛti (Memory): you stay assuming the form of mother. You are Lakshmi in the house of those who engage themselves in meritorious activities. You are Jati (Birth), Vṛtti (cause of activity) and Vyapti (pervasiveness.) You pervade everything in the form of intelligence.
O Mother, please delude these unthwartable Asuras. O origin of the universe, please waken Vishnu the unborn lord.”
O king, on being requested by Brahma for the destruction of Madhu and Kaiṭabha, the mother of the universe, the great Vidhya, the presiding deity of all Vidhya, Shakti the enchantress of the three worlds manifested herself as Mahakali on the twelfth Tithi of the bright half of the month of Phalguna.
Then a celestial voice arose: — “O lotus-seated one, do not be afraid. I shall remove the thorn after killing Madhu and Kaiṭabha in the battle.”
After saying this and coming out of the eyes, mouth etc. of Vishnu, the great Maya stood before Brahma of unmanifested birth. Vishnu, the lord of gods stood up and saw in front of him the Daityas Madhu and Kaiṭabha. A battle ensued between Vishnu of unequalled splendor and the two Daityas lasting for five thousand years. Then there ensued a hand-to-hand fight. Deluded by the powerful great Maya, the excellent Danava spoke to the lord Vishnu— “Ask for whatever boon you desire to choose.”
Narayana said: — If you are pleased with me grant me this boon that I may kill you. I do not request for any other boon.
On seeing the earth covered by a great expanse of ocean they spoke to Keshava: — “Kill us in a spot where the earth is not covered with water.” After giving his consent the lord lifted his dazzling discus, placed their heads on his loins and cut them off.
Every person is deluded by ignorance, attachment, and desires which are caused by Maya created by feminine shakti. Worship of Ma Durga annihilates ignorance, attachment, and desires to liberate him.