Fivefold Worship of Deities - Shiv Purana
Shiva Purana deliberates on ways and means to purify body, mind and wealth. Shiva Purana in simple language highlights the advantages of five-fold procedure of worship of deities - Yajna (fire-sacrifice), Daan (charitable gifts), japa, Tapas (austerities) and Puja. (Chapters 13 - 16, Vidhyeshwara Samhita)
At the beginning of the first creation, Bhagwan Mahadeva, the omniscient, merciful created the different week days for the entire world. First week day is his own day of Shiv ji, the global physician, the bestower of good health. Next, he created the day of Maya, the bestower of prosperity. The day after that created for the sake of surmounting mishaps and idleness. With the desire to bless the world and for their nature and protection he created next day dedicated to Sri Vishnu, the protector of world. The next day created for the sake of longevity of the world dedicated to the creator of the three worlds, Brahma. The last two days of the week created are for Indra and Yama. In the beginning when Bhagwan created Punya and Papa (virtue and sin) for the three worlds to flourish, these deities preside over them were assigned these two days. The last two days are bestower of worldly enjoyment and remover of premature death respectively.
Different days have their own master (swami) in the planetary system, created by Shiv ji. (Sunday – Sun, Shiv Ji, Monday – Moon, Laxmi, Tuesday – Mars, Kali, Hanuman ji, Wednesday – Mercury, Vishnu, Thursday – Jupiter, Friday – Venus and Saturday – Saturn, Rudra). Their worship on respective days accords the respective benefits viz. health, riches, removal of sickness, nourishment, longevity, enjoyment of pleasures and prevention of death respectively. The five-fold procedure to propitiate the deities is:
Dharma is twofold: one through the sacrificial offering (Yajna) and the other through the body by performing ceremonial ablution in a sacred river etc. One can earn wealth through virtues, Penance makes it divine. A person free from desire gains inner purity and by inner purity rises wisdom. In satya yuga, Dwaper and Treta, penance was recommended for Dharma; in Kaliyuga, is through worship of idols. The fruits are according to deeds. Dharma increases happiness and evils (adharma) increases misry. (Vidhyeshwara Samhita Chapter 13, shlokas 52-57)
Deities’ Yajna, rites, charitable gifts etc. done in the pure house, accord normal benefit, done in cowshed accord ten times of normal benefit, done at bank of tank accord hundred times of normal benefit, done near Tulsi plant or of Belva or Pipal trees accord a thousand times of normal benefit, done in temple accord two thousand times of normal benefit, done at the bank of seven holy rivers (Ganges, Godavari, Kaveri, Tamraparnika, Sindhu, Saryau and Narmada) accord twenty thousand times of normal benefit, done at the shore of Sea accord two lakh times of normal benefit and done on the summit of the mountain is twenty lakh times of normal benefit. But the place where the mind absorbs maximum is the excellent of all places. (Vidhyeshwara Samhita chapter 15 shlokas 1-5)
The benefits of yajna, charity etc. accrue in full in Satya yuga, three-fourth in Treta, half in Dwaper and one-fourth in Kali yuga. (Vidhyeshwara Samhita chapter 15 shlokas 6-7)
The benefits of yajna, charity etc. done by a pure souled person, accrue normal gain on a holy day, ten times during the period of transmigration of sun from one zodiac to another (day of Sankranti), hundred times during the period of equinox (when day & night are equal – 21st March & 22nd September), a thousand times on the day of commencement of Dakshin Ayana i.e., transit to Capricornus (kark Sankranti), ten thousand times on the day of commencement of Uttara Ayana (Makar Sankranti) and a hundred thousand times on the day of lunar eclipse. The period of solar eclipse is still more beneficial. The days of birth star and concluding day of holy rites are equally good. But the efficacy of the period of association of holy people (Satsang) is crore of times beneficial than that of solar eclipse. (Vidhyeshwara Samhita chapter 15 shlokas 8-12)
The two – practice of austerities and making charitable gifts – must be carried out always. Charitable gifts given for the satisfaction of deities is conducive to worldly enjoyment. Such a devotee shall always attain noble birth and enjoyment here and thereafter. If he performs the sacred rites with dedication to God, he shall attain salvation. (Vidhyeshwara Samhita chapter 15 shlokas 59-60)
In the daily or special sacrifices of the deities, ceremonial ablutions, charitable gifts, repeated reciting of mantras, sacrifices, propitiation of different deities in view of special dates or special conjunctions of planets or different days of the week, it is omnipresent supreme Brahman who bestows health and other benefits by assuming different forms. He bestows the same according to the time, place, rightfulness, materials, faith and region. Indigent person should worship deities with austerities and rich person by spending money. Again and again, they shall do virtuous actions with sufficient faith. When virtues become ripe, he shall achieve perfect knowledge.
Yajna (Fire Sacrifice):
The offering made into the fire is called as fire-sacrifice (Agni Yajna). In fire sacrifice, for brahmacharya staying in Ashram, samidhas (wooden logs) are sacrificed; for householders, rice etc. The offering made in evening for the fire god is bestower of prosperity. The offering made in morning for the sun god brings longevity. Offering made to sun is also Agni yajna.
All persons who are eagerly engaged Brahmyajna, worship of deities, worship of fire, reverence to preceptors and gratification of brahmins deserve to attain heaven. The study of Vedas after daily morning tasks till evening is Brahm yajna. The fire sacrifices made for the propitiation of Indra and other gods are called as Dev Yajna.
On each day, repeated recitation of mantras, feeding the Brahmins favourite dishes & goods of respective deities (Monday – cooked rice soaked in ghee; Tuesday – urad, moong, arhar; Wednesday - curd rice; Thursday - Kheer with added ghee, clothes; Friday – six flavoured foods: pungent, sweet, sour, salt, bitter & astringent; Saturday – gingelly seed (Till).
Daan (Charitable gifts):
According to the Vedas, the person attains the region of that deity to whom he makes charitable gifts. Everyone should set apart a third of his wealth for Dharma, another third for vriddhi (flourishing) and rest for his bhoga (enjoyment).
Charity of cooked food has ancillary ten limbs viz. Honouring, inviting, providing oil bath, washing & serving the feet, bestowing cloth, scents, delicious food, all six flavours, betel leaves, monetary gift and namaskar. The person who renders ten sorts of ancillary services to ten holy Brahmins, he secures good health if done on Monday and other benefits on other days, for ten years in this or next life. If given to hundred Brahmins, he secures Shiva loka for a thousand years; if given to thousand Brahmins, he secures benefits for ten thousand years; if given to a thousand holy Brahmins, he attains Satya loka; if given to ten thousand persons, he secures Vishnuloka; if given to one lakh persons, he secures benefits in Rudra loka. (Vidhyeshwara Samhita chapter 15 shlokas 27-35)
There are twelve things to be given in the twelve months beginning from month Chaitra or all together on auspicious occasion for flourishing of what is cherished – cow, plot of land, gingelly seeds, gold, ghee, cloth, food grains, jaggery, silver, salt, ash ground and a virgin. Cow dung (in form of manure etc.) ward off sins accruing from wealth & grain while sins connected with water, oil etc. are ward off by cow’s urine. The three kind of sins – physical, verbal and mental are warded off by milk, curd and ghee. Gift of plot of land is conducive to stability. Gift of gold increases gastric fire and is conducive to virility. Gift of ghee is nourishing and that of cloth is conducive to long life. Gift of food grains is conducive to increase the food production. Gift of jaggery yield sweet food. Gift of silver is conducive to increase in the quantity of semen. Gift of salt is conducive to the happy admixture of six tastes. The gift of pumpkin gourd is conducive to nourishment. All kinds of gifts increase everything and secure all kinds of enjoyment. (Vidhyeshwara Samhita chapter 15 shlokas 42- 50)
Charitable gifts out of wealth earned by lawful means increase wisdom. By wisdom and grace of guru, moksha (salvation) is achieved. Salvation is realisation of one’s own self and perfect bliss. All these things are attained, if the person cultivate association of good people (Satsang).
Householder should make charity of grains, wealth, etc. water should be given to thirsty, food to hungry and sick. Gift of food is of types – field, unhusked grain, uncooked food and cooked food. A giver of food receives half the merits of the receiver which he accumulates till the time food is digested.
A hungry person deserves charitable gifts and cooked food. If charitable gifts are given after requests, it yields half the benefits. Monetary gifts to servants accord only one-fourth of benefit. (Vidhyeshwara Samhita chapter 15 shlokas 18-22)
The person devoid of wealth shall endeavour to accumulate penance and austerities. Everlasting happiness is achieved by pilgrimage to holy centres and penances.
Japa (Recitation of Mantras repeatedly):
From Mahat Tattva (cosmic principle from which body and mind is formed), there are a thousand of extraneous bodies each of which is passed by each mantra slowly and Jiva must be unified with the supreme. This is the principle on which the Japa is based. Repetition of a smaller number of times may guard soul to some extent. And bring about the rebirth in the family of Brahmin.
Our body has six chakras – Muladhara, Svadhisthana, Manipura, Anahata, Vishuddha and Ajna. Sahasrara, the crown of head is not considered as Chakra and is identical as Brahman. One shall continue the japa on each chakra meditating on respective deities stationed there as well as stationed outside the body as well.
Only one who has purified oneself by means of Gayatri Japa can be called as pure Brahmin. He alone deserves the position of presiding over all rites, dana, japa, puja etc. He can the save others.
Gayatri Mantra is a three footed sacred mantra of Rigveda. It is addressed to sun (Savitar) and is therefore called Sivitri. Tatsaviturvranyam………Prachodayat means we meditate on that excellent light of the sun. may he illuminate our minds. It is one of purificatory rites. In this, boy is invested with the sacred thread (Janau) and thus endowed with spiritual birth and qualified to learn the Vedas by heart. A brahmin is initiated in the eighth year, kshatriya in the eleventh year, Vaishya in twelfth year; but term could be delayed.
In morning, after Sandhya upasana of Gayatri mantra, Arghya shall be offered thrice to the sun towards east. In midday, Arghya once is given. The offering of Arghya in the morning is by lifting both the hands high up; that in midday by letting off the water through the fingers and that in the evening by letting the water over ground facing the west. The circumambulation of oneself is performed and Achamana (without mantra) is performed. In midday the sun is viewed through the fingers reciting the mantra prescribed for that. Sandhya prayer before the prescribed time is ineffective. Sandhya should be done at the prescribed time.
One should firmly sit with mind in concentration and perform Gayatri japa after due obeisance to all gods. He should omit the Pranav mantra.
While practicing Gayatri mantra he shall realise fully the identity of the individual soul (Jiva) with the supreme Brahman. The full implication of Gayatri should be borne in mind when Japa is performed. We pray to Brahma, the creator of three worlds, to Achyuta the sustainer and Rudra the annihilator. We meditate on the self-luminary that prompts us in the activities of virtue and wisdom bestowing enjoyment and salvation. An excellent brahmin recites Pranav mantra a thousand times in morning every day, in midday hundred times and in evening twenty-eight times. Others can repeat the mantra as many times as possible. (Gayatri Sandhya: Vidhyeshwara Samhita Chapter 13, shlokas 26-46)
Persons of unflinching devotion to austerities and perfect knowledge, yogis, ascetics and brahmin who has repeated 24 lakh Gayatri Mantra, deserve holy worship since they quell others’ sins. (Vidhyeshwara Samhita chapter 15 shlokas 13-14)
Puja (Propitiation on the altar, idol, fire or an imagining deity in the brahmin by worshiping through sixteen forms):
One should perform the three rites of virtues viz. Nitya (daily prayers etc.), Naimittika (casual act of pity) and kamya (specific rites for fulfilling the desires).
In order to derive full benefit of worship, the sixteen forms of service shall be observed. The sprinkling of water over the idols shall be performed with flowers. The pouring of water shall be performed with mantras. The food offering should consist of Kheer. Abhishek of deities is conducive to the purity of soul, scent increases virtue, offering eatables to deities is conducive to increase of age & satisfaction, incense increases wealth, lighting of lamp is conducive to perfect knowledge and betel leaves are conducive to enjoyment. Hence in all worship these six items are scrupulously observed. Obeisance to the deity and repeated recitation of mantras accord all cherished desires. By worship of deities, the devotee attains different regions.
The sixteen types of puja services are – invocation (Avahana), offering the seat (Asana), water of offering (Arghya), washing of feet (Padya), water for rinsing the mouth as a mystical rite (Achmana), oil bath (Abhyanga snana), offering of cloth (Vastra), Scents (Gandha), flowers (pushpa), incense (dhupa), lamps (deepa), food offering (Nivedana), waiving of light (Nirajana), beetal leaves (Tambula), obeisance (Namaskara), and mystical discharge and conclusion (Visargana).
Or the devotee need perform the rites from water offering to food offering alone duly.
Or the devotee shall daily, as he can, ablution (purification process - Abhisheka, bathing in river),
food offering (Naivedya), and obeisance (Namaskara) and propitiation (Tarpana), - all these in order. It shall accord in the region of Shiva. Or he shall perform all the sixteen rites in the phallic emblem of human, saintly or godly origin, or in naturally risen up (Svayambhu) or in one of the extra ordinary natures installed duly. By circumambulation and obeisance, he will attain Shiva’s region gradually.
Reference: Shiva Purana, Vidhyeshwara Samhita Chapter 13, shlokas 26 – 85; Chapter 14, Shlokas 2-46; Chapter 15, Shlokas 1 – 60, Chapter 16)
Rudraksha beads bear a great spiritual, religions and materialistic significance. As per Hindu belief system, Rudraksha is symbol of link between earth and heaven. It is believed that it contains the secrets of evolution of entire cosmos within itself (Chaturvedi B K, 2004). For centuries, the Hindu sages believe that one can cultivate mental, physical and spiritual prowess to attain fearlessness to achieve the ultimate enlightenment (Seetha K N, 2008). Shiva Purana has highlighted divine properties of Rudraksha beads. It channelizes positive flow of energy and leaves a rejuvenating and calming impression on our mind and body. Hence, it is worshipped and worn for seeking benevolence of Lord Shiva and the benefits it holds.
Rudraksha tree is common name of the 300 species of Elaeocarpus ganitrus, 35 are found in the Gangetic plain in the foothills of the Himalayas to Nepal, South and Southeast Asia, parts of Australia, Guam, and Hawaii. Rudraksha (dried herbal fruit), chemically contain alkaloids, flavonoids, tannins, steroids, triterpenes, carbohydrates, and cardiac glycosides.
Scientific studies have been conducted world-wide and discovered that Rudraksha due to its Electro-Magnetic properties works magically on our body. A scientific study reported that the electromagnetic properties of Rudraksha beads activate body’s energy wheel, which in turn influences the bioelectrical properties of human body and heals various chronic diseases like blood pressure, heart rate, diabetes, gynaecological problem, neurological disorders, mental problem, insomnia and rheumatism. The Rudraksha have been found to balance/neutralize any excess charge deposited on human body.
One of the best-known research papers was published by Dr. Suhas Roy of the prestigious Indian Institute of Technology in Banaras, India. Dr. Roy's research confirmed that the healing powers of Rudraksha beads flow from their electro-magnetic properties. When Rudraksha beads are placed over the heart, they act to stabilize the heartbeat. Similar to magnets, the beads work on the principle of Dynamic Polarity. Blood circulation and heart beat automatically induce a magnetic field around the body and particularly the heart region. Depending on the polarity and intensity of this induced magnetic field, Rudraksha beads transmit subtle electrical and inductive impulses with opposing polarity and intensity. Accordingly, a proportionate balancing force is exerted on the heart to regulate it if it starts beating above or below normal rates. This action helps to ensure ideal blood circulation in the body.
Scientific researches have concluded that Rudraksha beads are anti-asthmatic, anti-depressant, anti-anxiety, anti-diabetic, anti-inflammatory, anti-convulsant, anti-hypertensive, anti-microbial, anti-ulcerogenic, anti-oxidant, analgesic, etc.
Rudraksha finds mention in Hindu texts – Upanishads, Shiva Purana etc. In Shiva Purana, it is mentioned that after performing penance for thousands of divine years, when Shiva opened the eyes, drops of tears which cropped up the Rudrakṣa plants. These Rudrakṣas are of auspicious nature.
The colours of the four types of Rudrakṣas are respectively white, red, yellow and black which are worn according to their own Varna (Brahmin, Kshatriya, Vaishya and Shudra respectively). The Rudrakṣa of the size of an Emblic myrobalan (awla) is excellent; one of the sizes of the fruit of the jujube tree (bair) is medium class; one of the sizes of a gram is lower class. (7-15)
That which is of the size of the emblic myrobalan is conducive to the destruction of all distresses. That which is of the size of the berry is conducive to the achievementof the fruit of all desires. The lighter the Rudrakṣa, the more fruitful it is. The wearing of Rudrakṣa is recommended for the sake of destroying sins. Six types of Rudrakṣas shall be discarded - that which is defiled by worms, is cut and broken, has no thorn like protrusions, has cracks and is not circular. That which has a natural hole from end to end is the most excellent; that which is bored through by human effort is the middling one. (17-23)
Rudrakṣas based of faces are of various types as under (63-82):
Rudraksas should be worn after being consecrated with the mantra. All evil spirits, ghosts, witches like Dakini and Sakini, other malignant spirits, evil charms and spells etc. fly away on seeing a man with the garland of Rudrakṣas. Seeing a devotee with the garland of Rudrakṣas, Shiva, Viṣhṇu, Devi, Gaṇapati, the sun and all the deities are pleased. (Shiv Purana - Vidhyeshwara Samhita chapter 25 Shloka 84-86).
If eleven hundred Rudrakṣas are worn on the person, the man assumes the form of Rudra. A devout man shall make a coronet consisting of five hundred and fifty Rudrakṣas. A person of pious nature shall make three circular strings in the manner of the sacred thread, each having three hundred and sixty beads. Rudrakṣas must be worn on the tuft, the ears, round the neck; round each of the arms, elbows and wrists. (Shiv Purana - Vidhyeshwara Samhita chapter 25 Shloka 28-30)
Rudraksas shall be worn on the head repeating “Ishana” mantra; on the ears with “Tripuruṣa” mantra; round the neck with “Aghora” mantra and on the chest; round the forearms with “Aghora Bija” mantra; round the stomach with “Vamadeva” mantra. Or all beads of Rudraksas can be worn with the “Panchakshara” mantra. (Shiv Purana - Vidhyeshwara Samhita chapter 25 Shloka 40-42)
A devotee of Shiva shall refrain from eating meat, garlic, onion, red garlic, potherb, Sleṣmataka and liquors. (Shiv Purana - Vidhyeshwara Samhita chapter 25 Shloka 43)
People of all Varṇas and asramas even women can wear Rudrakṣa at the bidding of Shiva. The ascetics shall wear it with the Praṇava. (Shiv Purana - Vidhyeshwara Samhita chapter 25 Shloka 47)
Those who wear Tripuṇḍra, the matted hair and the Rudrakṣa do not go to Yama’s abode. (Shiv Purana - Vidhyeshwara Samhita chapter 25 Shloka 49)
Reference: Shiv Purana - Vidhyeshwara Samhita chapter 25 Shlokas
When the great lord of asuras Shumbha was slain there by the Devi, Indra and other devas led by Agni, with their object fulfilled and their cheerful faces illumining the quarters, praised her, (Katyayani).
The Devas said (Chapter – 11):
‘O Devi, you who removes the sufferings of your suppliants, be gracious. Be propitious, O Mother of the whole world. Be gracious, O Mother of the universe. Protect the universe. You are, O Devi, the ruler of all that is moving and unmoving. You are the sole substratum of the world because you subsist in the form of the earth. By you, who exists in the shape of water, all this (universe) is gratified, O Devi of inviolable valour!
You are the power of Vishnu and have endless valour. You are the primeval maya, which is the source of the universe; by you all this (universe) has been thrown into an illusion. O Devi, if you become gracious, you become the final cause of emancipation of the world.
Salutation to you, O Devi Narayani, you who abides as intelligence in the hearts of all creatures and bestows enjoyment and liberation. You who, in the form of minutes, moments and other divisions of time, brings about change in things, and have (thus) the power to destroy the universe. You who are the good of all good, O auspicious Devi, who accomplish every object, the giver of refuge, O three eyed Gauri! You who have the power of creation, sustenance and destruction and are eternal. You are the substratum and embodiment of the three gunas. You who intent on saving the dejected and distressed that take refuge under you O you, Devi, who removes the sufferings of all!
Salutation to you, O Narayani, you who are good fortune, modesty, great wisdom, faith, nourishment, and Svadha, you who are immovable O you, great Night and great Illusion.
Salutation to you, O Narayani, you who are intelligence and Sarasvati, O best one, prosperity, consort of Vishnu, dark one, the great nature, be propitious. O Queen of all, you who exist in the form of all, and possess every might, save us from error, O Devi.
Salutation to you, Devi Durga! May this benign countenance of yours adorned with three eyes, protect us from all fears.
When satisfied, you destroy all illness but when wrathful you put an end to all the longed-for desires. No calamity befalls men who have sought you. Those who have sought you become verily a refuge of others. Who is there other than you in the sciences, in the scriptures, and in the Vedic sayings to light the lamp of discrimination? (Still) you cause this universe to whirl about again and again within the dense darkness of the depths of attachment. Where raksasas and snakes of virulent poison (are), where foes and hosts of robbers (exist), where forest conflagrations (occur), there and in the mid-sea, you stand and save the world. O Queen of the universe, you protect the universe. As the self of the universe, you support the universe. You are the (goddess) worthy to be adored by the Lord of the universe. Those who bow in devotion to you themselves become the refuge of the universe. O Devi, be pleased and protect us always from fear of foes, as you have done just now by the slaughter of asuras. And quickly destroy the sins of all worlds and the great calamities, which have sprung from the maturing of evil portents. O Devi you who remove the afflictions of the universe, be gracious to us who have bowed to you. O you worthy of adoration by the dwellers of the three worlds, be boon giver to the worlds.’
The Devi said, ‘O Devas, I am prepared to bestow a boon. Choose whatever boon you desire in your mind, for the welfare of the world. I shall grant it.
The devas said, ‘O Queen of all, in this same manner, you must destroy all our enemies and all the afflictions of three worlds.’
Devi said: -
When the twenty-eighth age has arrived, in the Vaivasvata Manvantara, two others great Asuras shall be born, Shumbha and Nishumbha. Then born as the offspring of Yasoda’s womb in the cowherd Nanda’s house, and dwelling on the Vindhya mountains, I will destroy them both. And again, becoming incarnate in a very terrible form on the face of the earth, I will slay the Vaipracitta Danavas; and when I devour those fierce and great Vaipracitta Asuras, my teeth shall become red like the flowers of the pomegranate. Hence the gods in Svarga and men in the world of mortals praising me shall always talk of me as “Red-toothed (Raktdandika).” Men will therefore call me Nandaja.
And again, after a period of a hundred years during which rain shall stop, praised by the munis I shall be born, but not womb-begotten, on the earth. Then because I shall behold the munis with a hundred eyes, mankind shall therefore celebrate me as “Hundred-eyed.” Next, I shall support the whole world with the life-sustaining vegetables, which shall grow out of my own body, during a period of heavy rain. I shall gain fame on the earth then as Sakambhari (Shatakshi); and in that very period, I shall slay the great Asura named Durgama. I shall be called as Durga. When Aruṇakṣa shall work great trouble in the three worlds, I shall take a bee-like form, the form of innumerable bees, and shall slay the great Asura. Since I shall be taking the form of a bee and killing the demon Aruṇa, men will glorify me as Bhramari. Again, I shall take a terrible form and devour the Rakṣasas. I shall then be famous as Bhima Devi. Whenever there is harassment caused by the Asuras I shall surely incarnate and work for your welfare.
Thus, whenever trouble shall arise caused by the Danavas, at each such time I shall become incarnate and accomplish the foes’ destruction.
Devi said (Chapter 12):
And whoever with mind composed shall praise me constantly with these hymns, I will quiet down every trouble for him assuredly. And those who shall celebrate the destruction of Madhu and Kaiṭabha, the slaughter of the Asura Mahiṣa, and the slaying of Shumbha and Nishumbha likewise; and those also who shall listen in faith to this poem of my sublime majesty on the eighth day of the lunar fortnight, on the fourteenth and on the ninth, with intent mind, to them shall happen no wrong-doing whatever, nor calamities that arise from wrong-doing, nor poverty, nor indeed deprivation of their desires. Never shall he experience fear from enemies, from robbers, nor from kings, nor from weapon or fire or water-flood. Hence this poem of my majesty must be read by men of composed minds and listened to by them always with faith, for it is the supreme course of blessings. Now may this poem of my majesty quell all kinds of calamities, which arise from grievous pestilence, and the three-fold portent.
Where this poem is duly read constantly at my sanctuary, I will never forsake that place, and there my presence is fixed. At the offering of the sacrifice (Bali), and during worship, in the ceremonies with fire, and at a great festival, all this story of my exploits must verily be proclaimed and listened to. I will accept with kindliness both the “Bali” worship that is paid, and the oblation by fire that is offered, by him who understands or him who understands not. And at the great annual worship that is performed in autumn time, the man, who listens filled with faith to this poem of my majesty, shall assuredly through my favour be delivered from every trouble, and be blessed with riches, grain, and children. From listening to this poem of my majesty moreover come splendid issues and prowess in battles, and a man becomes fearless.
When men listen to this poem of my majesty, enemies pass to destruction, and prosperity accrues, and their family rejoices. Let a man listen to this poem of my majesty everywhere, at a ceremony for securing tranquility, and after seeing an ill-dream and when planets are greatly eclipsed. Thereby portents turn into calm, and dreadful eclipses of the planets, and an ill-dream which men have seen; and a sweet dream appears. It produces peacefulness in children who have been possessed by the demon that seizes children, and it is the best promoter of friendship among men when union is dissolved; it is the most potent diminisher of the power of all men of ill livelihood; verily through reading it, comes the destruction of Rakṣasas, goblins and Pisachas. All this poem of my majesty brings a man near unto me. And by means of cattle, flowers, arghya offerings and incenses, and by the finest perfumes and lamps, by feasts given to brahmins, by oblations, by sprinkled water day and night, and by various other objects of enjoyment, by gifts yearly— the favour which comes by such means, such favour is won from me when this story of my noble exploits is once heard. When heard it takes away sins and confers perfect health.
This celebration of me preserves created beings from future births, even this story of my exploits in battles, the annihilation of the wicked Daityas. When it is heard, no fear, that is caused by enmity, springs up among men. And the hymns which have composed, and those composed by brahmin ṛiṣhis, and those composed by Brahma bestow a splendid mind. He who is surrounded by a raging fire in a forest or on a lonesome road, or who is encompassed by robbers in a desolate spot, or who is captured by enemies, or who is-prowled after by a lion or tiger or by wild elephants in a forest, or who is under the command of an enraged king, or who is sentenced to death, or who has fallen into bonds, or who is whirled around by the wind, or who stands in a ship in the wide sea, or, who is in the most dreadful battle with weapons falling upon him, or who is afflicted with pain amidst all kinds of terrible troubles— such a man on calling to mind this story of my exploits is delivered from his strait. Through my power lions and other dangerous beasts, robbers, and enemies, from a distance indeed, flee from him who calls to mind this story of my exploits.
The Rishi said:
Having, spoken thus the adorable Chaṇḍika, who is fierce in prowess, vanished there, while the gods were gazing indeed on her. The gods also relieved from fear, their foes being slain, all resumed their own dominions as before, participating in their shares of sacrifices.
And the Daityas—when Shumbha, that most fierce foe of the gods, who brought ruin on the world and who was peerless in prowess, had been slain by the goddess in fight, and Nishumbha also great in valour was slain —all came to Patala.
Thus, that adorable goddess, although- everlasting, yet taking birth again and again, accomplishes the safeguarding of the world, O king. By her this universe is bewitched she verily gives birth to the universe. And when besought, she bestows knowledge; when gratified, she bestows prosperity.
All this egg of Brahma, O king, is pervaded by her, who is Mahakali at Mahakala, and who has the nature of the Great Destroying Goddess. She indeed is Mahamari at the fated time; she indeed is creation, the Unborn; she indeed the Eternal gives stability to created beings at theirs fated time. She indeed is Lakṣhmi, bestowing prosperity on the houses of men while she abides with them; and she indeed when she is absent becomes the goddess of Fortune unto their destruction. When hymned and worshipped with flowers, and with incense, perfumes, and other offerings, she bestows wealth and sons, and a mind brilliant in righteousness.
The ṛiṣhi said (Chapter 13):
I have now related to you, O king, this sublime poem the Devi-mahatmya. Such majestic power has the goddess, by whom this world is upheld. Moreover, knowledge is conferred by her who is the adorable Vishnu’s Illusive power. By her you and this vaishya and other men of discrimination, and celebrated men are bewitched; and others shall become bewitched. Go unto her, the supreme queen, as to a place of refuge, O great king. She indeed, when propitiated by men, bestows enjoyment, Svarga and final emancipation from existence.
Having heard this his speech, king Suratha fell prostrate before the illustrious ṛiṣhi who performed severe penances, and being down-cast by his excessive regard for self and by the deprivation of his kingdom, went forthwith to perform austerities; and the vaishya, O great muni, in order to get a vision of Amba, took up his station on a sand-bank in a river; and the vaishya practiced austerities, muttering the sublime hymn to the goddess. They both made an earthen image of the goddess on that sandbank, and paid worship to it with flowers, incense, fire and libations of water. Abstaining from food, restricting their food, concentrating their minds on her, keeping their thoughts composed, they both offered the sacrifice (Bali), offering also sprinkled with blood drawn from their own limbs. When they continued with subdued souls to propitiate her thus for three years, Chaṇḍika, who upholds the world, well-pleased spoke in visible shape.
The goddess spoke:
What do you solicit, O king, and you rejoicer of your family, receive all that from me; I shall bestow it.
Then the king chose a kingdom that should not perish in another life, and in this life his own kingdom wherein the power of his enemies should be destroyed by force. Then the vaishya also, whose mind was down-cast, chose knowledge, — to be wise, knowing ‘what is mine,’ and ‘what I am,’— knowledge that causes the downfall of worldly attachments.
The goddess spoke:
O king, you shall obtain thine own kingdom in a very few days, after slaying thine enemies; it shall be steadfast for you there; and when dead, you shall gain another life from the god “Vivasvat, and shalt be a Manu on earth, by name Savarṇika. And O excellent vaishya, I bestow on you the boon which you has sought of me; knowledge shall be yours upto full perfection.
Having thus given them both the boon that each desired, the goddess vanished forthwith, while extolled by them both in faith. Having thus gained the boon from the goddess, Suratha the noble kṣattriya shall obtain a new birth through the Sun and shall be the Manu Savarṇi.
Bija Akshara Mantra
A japa of a mantra. A mantra has a rishi who gave it to the world, a meter, which governs the inflection of the voice and a devata, or supernatural being higher or lower, as its informing power. The bija, seed is a significant word or series of words, which gives it a special power. In Kaliyuga, japa is the easiest way to the realization of God. The mode of repetition of a mantra with feeling and in a particular manner, a definite number of times, with right observances, until a fixed number of japa is reached, in order to obtain substantial benefit out of the mantra, is called purashcarana. The practitioner has to observe certain rules and regulations in regard to purashcarana and has to undergo a perfect dietetic discipline, also in accordance wth those injunctions. The mantra when it is mentally recited in this manner will bring to the sadhaka all that he desires within its jurisdiction (provided it is spiritual and for the welfare of humanity).
The sadhaka should sit facing either the east or north, during japa. During nights, he must face north. Padma, siddha, swastika, sukha or vir asana is recommended for japa. Cotton cloth, silk, deer skin or tiger skin most preferred should be used as seat, which will bring saubhagya, jnana and early siddhi.
It should be borne in mind, that japa done during the time of solar or lunar eclipses will produce a tremendous effect and hence, this rara opportunity should not be missed by anybody, whenever it offers itself. During the six seasons of the year, one should perform japa, before noon, at noon, after noon, at midnight, in the early morning and in the evening respectively.
The japa of amantra reduces the force of sankalpa. It attenuates the mind. The mind becomes thread-like (state of tanumanasi), the third Bhumika or stage of jnana). It fills the mind with sattva guna, peace, purity and strength. It develops the will-force.
Suka, Sanaka and preferred sages, endowed with great powers of Yoga, enjoyed the Bliss of the supreme by the power of nama. Narada, Prahlada, Sri Hanuman, Sri Sita Devi, Ajamila, Gajendra, Ganika etc. attained moksha by the efficacy of the Divine name.
Japa is a very great purifier. It checks the force of the thoughts current moving towards objects. It forces the mind towards God, towards the attainment of the Eternal. Japa eventually helps in obtaining darshan of God. Japa regulates the unsteady vibrations of five sheaths. Japa changes the mind-stuff from worldliness to spirituality, from rajas and activity to sattva and illumination.
Seed Sanskrit syllables (bijakṣara) are the quintessence of mantra, containing infinite meaning in a single syllable. Regular chanting of beej mantra in the prescribed way can help enhance the spiritual powers of people and enable them see the true light in front of them leading their journeys. Like a seed transform from a tiny speck into a mature, complex plant, these simple-sound seeds within us form the foundation of mighty growth and spiritual evolution.
Mantras harnesses the mind in order to connect with the inner self and, thus, the divine. Chants of mantras create thought-energy waves, and the organism vibrates in tune with the energy and spiritual appeal of a chant. Scientists say that when a mantra is chanted rhythmically, it creates a neuro-linguistic effect. Such an effect occurs even if the meaning of the mantra is not known.
Some bija mantras are made up of compound letters, such as the mantra Hrim. The bijas of the mahabhutas or elements i.e., of the devata or the presiding intelligence of the elements, viz. ether, air, fire, water and earth, are respectively Ham, Yam, Ram, Vam and Lam. Panchadasi or panchasakshari mantra is of 15 letters. Shodashi or Sodasakshari mantra is of 16 letters.
Reference: Voice of Babaji – by V T Neelakantan, S A A Ramaiah, Babaji Nagaraj
The rishi spoke:
In ancient period, Indra’s (sovereignty) over the three worlds and his portions of the sacrifices were taken away by the asuras, Shumbha and Nishumbha, by force. Due to pride of their power and strength, the two took over the offices of the sun, the moon, Kubera, Yama, and Varuna. They robbed the kingdom of three worlds from three world and of his portions of the sacrifices; they both assumed the sun’s dignity and the moon’s dominion, and Kubera’s and Yama’s and Varuṇa’s; and they both exercised Vayu’s authority and Agni’s sphere of action. Thereby the gods were scattered, deprived of their sovereignties, and put to rout. The thirty gods, bereft of their dominion and set at naught by those two great Asuras, all recall to mind that never-vanquished goddess, — “She granted us the boon, ‘As & when in calamities shall remember, that very moment will I put an end to all your direst calamities.” Making this resolve the gods went to Himalaya, and there raised their hymn to the goddess, who is Vishnu’s illusive power.
The Devas spoke:
The rishi spoke:
While the gods were thus engaged in offering hymns and other reverential acts, Parvati came there to bathe in the water of the Ganges. She, the beautiful-browed, said to those gods, — “Whom do you hymn here?” And springing forth from the treasure-house of her body the auspicious goddess spoke — “For me this hymn is uttered by the assembled gods, who have been set at naught by the Daitya Shumbha and routed in battle by Nishumbha.” Because Ambika issued forth from the treasure-house of Parvati’s body, she is therefore named in song as Kauṣiki among all the worlds. Now after she had issued forth, the other also, even Parvati, became black; she is celebrated as Kalika; she fixed her abode on Mount Himalaya.
Thereafter, Chaṇḍa, and Muṇḍa, the two attendants of Shumbha and Nishumbba, saw Ambika displaying her sublime and most captivating form. They both told Shumbha: ‘O King, one woman, most surpassingly beautiful, dwells there shedding luster on mount Himalaya and illuminating the regions. Such supreme beauty was never seen by anyone anywhere. Ascertain who that Goddess is and take possession of her, O Lord of the asuras! Nishumbha has every kind of gem produced in the sea. Fire also gave you two garments, which are purified by fire. O lord, all those display their splendor at this present time in your house. Airavata, gem among elephants, has been captured from Purandara; and this Parijata tree and the horse Uccaiḥshravas. Here stands the heavenly chariot yoked with swans in your courtyard; it has been brought here, the wonderful chariot composed of gems, which belonged to Brahma. Here is the Nidhi Mahapadma, captured from the Lord of wealth. And the Ocean gave a garland made of filaments and of undying lotus flowers. In thy house stands Varuṇa’s umbrella, which streams with gold. And here is the choice chariot that belonged to Prajapati formerly. You have carried off Death’s power which is named Utkranti-da. The noose of the Ocean-king is in thy brother's possession. And Nishumbha has every kind of gem which is produced in the sea. Agni also gave thee two garments which are purified by fire. Thus, O lord of the Daityas, all gems have been captured by you; why not you seize this auspicious lady, this gem of womankind?” Thus, O Lord of asuras, all gems, precious stones, elephants, horses and other valuable things indeed exist in the three worlds, have been brought by you. Why is this beautiful lady-jewel not seized by you?
The rishi spoke:
On hearing these words of Chanda and Munda, Shumbha sent the great asura Sugriva as messenger to the Devi. He said: Go and tell her thus in my words and do the thing in such a manner that she may quickly come to me in love. He went there where the Devi was staying in a very beautiful spot on the mountain and spoke to her in fine and sweet words.
The messenger said:
O Devi, Shumbha, lord of asuras, is the supreme sovereign of three worlds. Sent by him as messenger, I have come here to your presence. Hearken to what has been said by him whose command is never resisted among the devas and who has vanquished all the foes of the asuras: (He says), “All the three worlds are mine and the devas are obedient to me. We look upon you, O Devi, as the jewel of womankind in the world. You who are such, come to me, since we are the enjoyers of the best objects. Take to me or to my younger brother Nishumbha of great prowess, O unsteady-eyed lady, for you are in truth a jewel. Wealth, great and beyond compare, you will get by marrying me. Think over this in your mind and become my wife.”
The Rishi said: Thus told, Durga the adorable and auspicious, by whom this universe is supported, then became serene.
The Devi said:
You have spoken truth; nothing false has been uttered by you in this matter. Shumbha is indeed the sovereign of the three worlds and likewise is also Nishumbha. But in this matter, how can that which has been promised to be made false? Hear what promise I had made already out of foolishness. “He who conquers me in battle, removes my pride and is my match in strength in the world shall be my husband.” So let Shumbha come here then, or Nishumbha the great asura. Vanquishing me here let him soon take my hand in marriage. Why delay?
The messenger said: O Devi, you are haughty. Talk not so before me. Which man in the three worlds will stand before Shumbha and Nishumbha? All the devas verily cannot stand face to face with even the other asuras in battle. Why mention you, O Devi, a single woman? Indra and all other devas could not stand in battle against Shumbha and other demons, how will you, a woman, face them? On my word itself, you go to Shumbha and Nishumbha. Let it not be that you go to them with your dignity lost by being dragged by your hair.
The Devi said: Yes, true, Shumbha is strong and so is Nishumbha exceedingly heroic! What can I do since there stands my ill-considered vow taken long ago? Go back and tell the lord of asuras carefully all this that I have said; let him do whatever he considers proper.
Here ends the fifth chapter called ‘Devi’s conversation with the messenger’ of the Devi-Mahatmya in Markandeya-Purana during the period of Savarni, the Manu.
॥ पञ्चमोऽध्यायः ॥
अस्य श्री उत्तरचरित्रस्य रुद्र ऋषिः । श्रीमहासरस्वती देवता ।अनुष्टुप् छन्दः । भीमा शक्तिः । भ्रामरी बीजम् । सूर्यस्तत्त्वम् । सामवेदः स्वरूपम् । श्रीमहासरस्वतीप्रीत्यर्थे उत्तरचरित्रपाठे विनियोगः ।
घण्टाशूलहलानि शङ्खमुसले चक्रं धनुः सायकं हस्ताब्जैर्दधतीं घनान्तविलसच्छीतांशुतुल्यप्रभाम् ।
गौरीदेहसमुद्भवां त्रिजगतामाधारभूतां महापूर्वामत्र सरस्वतीमनुभजे शुम्भादिदैत्यार्दिनीम् ॥
ॐ क्लीं ऋषिरुवाच ॥ १॥
पुरा शुम्भनिशुम्भाभ्यामसुराभ्यां शचीपतेः । त्रैलोक्यं यज्ञभागाश्च हृता मदबलाश्रयात् ॥ २॥
तावेव सूर्यतां तद्वदधिकारं तथैन्दवम् । कौबेरमथ याम्यं च चक्राते वरुणस्य च ॥ ३॥
तावेव पवनर्द्धिं च चक्रतुर्वह्निकर्म च । ततो देवा विनिर्धूता भ्रष्टराज्याः पराजिताः ॥ ४॥
हृताधिकारास्त्रिदशास्ताभ्यां सर्वे निराकृताः । महासुराभ्यां तां देवीं संस्मरन्त्यपराजिताम् ॥ ५॥
तयास्माकं वरो दत्तो यथापत्सु स्मृताखिलाः । भवतां नाशयिष्यामि तत्क्षणात्परमापदः ॥ ६॥
इति कृत्वा मतिं देवा हिमवन्तं नगेश्वरम् । जग्मुस्तत्र ततो देवीं विष्णुमायां प्रतुष्टुवुः ॥ ७॥
देवा ऊचुः ॥ ८॥
नमो देव्यै महादेव्यै शिवायै सततं नमः । नमः प्रकृत्यै भद्रायै नियताः प्रणताः स्म ताम् ॥ ९॥
रौद्रायै नमो नित्यायै गौर्यै धात्र्यै नमो नमः । ज्योत्स्नायै चेन्दुरूपिण्यै सुखायै सततं नमः ॥ १०॥
कल्याण्यै प्रणतां वृद्ध्यै सिद्ध्यै कुर्मो नमो नमः । नैरृत्यै भूभृतां लक्ष्म्यै शर्वाण्यै ते नमो नमः ॥ ११॥
दुर्गायै दुर्गपारायै सारायै सर्वकारिण्यै । ख्यात्यै तथैव कृष्णायै धूम्रायै सततं नमः ॥ १२॥
अतिसौम्यातिरौद्रायै नतास्तस्यै नमो नमः । नमो जगत्प्रतिष्ठायै देव्यै कृत्यै नमो नमः ॥ १३॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु विष्णुमायेति शब्दिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ १४-१६॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु चेतनेत्यभिधीयते । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ १७-१९॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु बुद्धिरूपेण संस्थिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ २०-२२॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु निद्रारूपेण संस्थिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ २३-२५॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु क्षुधारूपेण संस्थिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ २६-२८॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु छायारूपेण संस्थिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ २९-३१॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु शक्तिरूपेण संस्थिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ ३२-३४॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु तृष्णारूपेण संस्थिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ ३५-३७॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु क्षान्तिरूपेण संस्थिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ ३८-४०॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु जातिरूपेण संस्थिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ ४१-४३॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु लज्जारूपेण संस्थिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ ४४-४६॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु शान्तिरूपेण संस्थिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ ४७-४९॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु श्रद्धारूपेण संस्थिता ।नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ ५०-५२॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु कान्तिरूपेण संस्थिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ ५३-५५॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु लक्ष्मीरूपेण संस्थिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ ५६-५८॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु वृत्तिरूपेण संस्थिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ ५९-६१॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु स्मृतिरूपेण संस्थिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ ६२-६४॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु दयारूपेण संस्थिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ ६५-६७॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु तुष्टिरूपेण संस्थिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ ६८-७०॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु मातृरूपेण संस्थिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ ७१-७३॥
या देवी सर्वभूतेषु भ्रान्तिरूपेण संस्थिता । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ ७४-७६॥
इन्द्रियाणामधिष्ठात्री भूतानां चाखिलेषु या । भूतेषु सततं तस्यै व्याप्त्यै देव्यै नमो नमः ॥ ७७॥
चितिरूपेण या कृत्स्नमेतद् व्याप्य स्थिता जगत् । नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमस्तस्यै नमो नमः ॥ ७८-८०॥
स्तुता सुरैः पूर्वमभीष्टसंश्रयात्तथा सुरेन्द्रेण दिनेषु सेविता । करोतु सा नः शुभहेतुरीश्वरी
शुभानि भद्राण्यभिहन्तु चापदः ॥ ८१॥
या साम्प्रतं चोद्धतदैत्यतापितैरस्माभिरीशा च सुरैर्नमस्यते । या च स्मृता तत्क्षणमेव हन्ति नः
सर्वापदो भक्तिविनम्रमूर्तिभिः ॥ ८२॥
ऋषिरुवाच ॥ ८३॥
एवं स्तवाभियुक्तानां देवानां तत्र पार्वती । स्नातुमभ्याययौ तोये जाह्नव्या नृपनन्दन ॥ ८४॥
साब्रवीत्तान् सुरान् सुभ्रूर्भवद्भिः स्तूयतेऽत्र का । शरीरकोशतश्चास्याः समुद्भूताब्रवीच्छिवा ॥ ८५॥
स्तोत्रं ममैतत्क्रियते शुम्भदैत्यनिराकृतैः । देवैः समेतैः समरे निशुम्भेन पराजितैः ॥ ८६॥
शरीरकोशाद्यत्तस्याः पार्वत्या निःसृताम्बिका । कौशिकीति समस्तेषु ततो लोकेषु गीयते ॥ ८७॥
तस्यां विनिर्गतायां तु कृष्णाभूत्सापि पार्वती । कालिकेति समाख्याता हिमाचलकृताश्रया ॥ ८८॥
ततोऽम्बिकां परं रूपं बिभ्राणां सुमनोहरम् । ददर्श चण्डो मुण्डश्च भृत्यौ शुम्भनिशुम्भयोः ॥ ८९॥
ताभ्यां शुम्भाय चाख्याता सातीव सुमनोहरा । काप्यास्ते स्त्री महाराज भासयन्ती हिमाचलम् ॥ ९०॥
नैव तादृक् क्वचिद्रूपं दृष्टं केनचिदुत्तमम् । ज्ञायतां काप्यसौ देवी गृह्यतां चासुरेश्वर ॥ ९१॥
स्त्रीरत्नमतिचार्वङ्गी द्योतयन्ती दिशस्त्विषा । सा तु तिष्ठति दैत्येन्द्र तां भवान् द्रष्टुमर्हति ॥ ९२॥
यानि रत्नानि मणयो गजाश्वादीनि वै प्रभो । त्रैलोक्ये तु समस्तानि साम्प्रतं भान्ति ते गृहे ॥ ९३॥
ऐरावतः समानीतो गजरत्नं पुरन्दरात् । पारिजाततरुश्चायं तथैवोच्चैःश्रवा हयः ॥ ९४॥
विमानं हंससंयुक्तमेतत्तिष्ठति तेऽङ्गणे । रत्नभूतमिहानीतं यदासीद्वेधसोऽद्भुतम् ॥ ९५॥
निधिरेष महापद्मः समानीतो धनेश्वरात् । किञ्जल्किनीं ददौ चाब्धिर्मालामम्लानपङ्कजाम् ॥ ९६॥
छत्रं ते वारुणं गेहे काञ्चनस्रावि तिष्ठति । तथायं स्यन्दनवरो यः पुरासीत्प्रजापतेः ॥ ९७॥
मृत्योरुत्क्रान्तिदा नाम शक्तिरीश त्वया हृता । पाशः सलिलराजस्य भ्रातुस्तव परिग्रहे ॥ ९८॥
निशुम्भस्याब्धिजाताश्च समस्ता रत्नजातयः । वह्निरपि ददौ तुभ्यमग्निशौचे च वाससी ॥ ९९॥
एवं दैत्येन्द्र रत्नानि समस्तान्याहृतानि ते । स्त्रीरत्नमेषा कल्याणी त्वया कस्मान्न गृह्यते ॥ १००॥
ऋषिरुवाच ॥ १०१॥
निशम्येति वचः शुम्भः स तदा चण्डमुण्डयोः । प्रेषयामास सुग्रीवं दूतं देव्या महासुरम् ॥ १०२॥
इति चेति च वक्तव्या सा गत्वा वचनान्मम । यथा चाभ्येति सम्प्रीत्या तथा कार्यं त्वया लघु ॥ १०३॥
स तत्र गत्वा यत्रास्ते शैलोद्देशेऽतिशोभने । तां च देवीं ततः प्राह श्लक्ष्णं मधुरया गिरा ॥ १०४॥
दूत उवाच ॥ १०५॥
देवि दैत्येश्वरः शुम्भस्त्रैलोक्ये परमेश्वरः । दूतोऽहं प्रेषितस्तेन त्वत्सकाशमिहागतः ॥ १०६॥
अव्याहताज्ञः सर्वासु यः सदा देवयोनिषु । निर्जिताखिलदैत्यारिः स यदाह शृणुष्व तत् ॥ १०७॥
मम त्रैलोक्यमखिलं मम देवा वशानुगाः । यज्ञभागानहं सर्वानुपाश्नामि पृथक् पृथक् ॥ १०८॥
त्रैलोक्ये वररत्नानि मम वश्यान्यशेषतः । तथैव गजरत्नं च हृतं देवेन्द्रवाहनम् ॥ १०९॥
क्षीरोदमथनोद्भूतमश्वरत्नं ममामरैः । उच्चैःश्रवससंज्ञं तत्प्रणिपत्य समर्पितम् ॥ ११०॥
यानि चान्यानि देवेषु गन्धर्वेषूरगेषु च । रत्नभूतानि भूतानि तानि मय्येव शोभने ॥ १११॥
स्त्रीरत्नभूतां त्वां देवि लोके मन्यामहे वयम् । सा त्वमस्मानुपागच्छ यतो रत्नभुजो वयम् ॥ ११२॥
मां वा ममानुजं वापि निशुम्भमुरुविक्रमम् । भज त्वं चञ्चलापाङ्गि रत्नभूतासि वै यतः ॥ ११३॥
परमैश्वर्यमतुलं प्राप्स्यसे मत्परिग्रहात् । एतद्बुद्ध्या समालोच्य मत्परिग्रहतां व्रज ॥ ११४॥
ऋषिरुवाच ॥ ११५॥
इत्युक्ता सा तदा देवी गम्भीरान्तःस्मिता जगौ । दुर्गा भगवती भद्रा ययेदं धार्यते जगत् ॥ ११६॥
देव्युवाच ॥ ११७॥
सत्यमुक्तं त्वया नात्र मिथ्या किञ्चित्त्वयोदितम् । त्रैलोक्याधिपतिः शुम्भो निशुम्भश्चापि तादृशः ॥ ११८॥
किं त्वत्र यत्प्रतिज्ञातं मिथ्या तत्क्रियते कथम् । श्रूयतामल्पबुद्धित्वात्प्रतिज्ञा या कृता पुरा ॥ ११९॥
यो मां जयति सङ्ग्रामे यो मे दर्पं व्यपोहति । यो मे प्रतिबलो लोके स मे भर्ता भविष्यति ॥ १२०॥
तदागच्छतु शुम्भोऽत्र निशुम्भो वा महाबलः । मां जित्वा किं चिरेणात्र पाणिं गृह्णातु मे लघु ॥ १२१॥
दूत उवाच ॥ १२२॥
अवलिप्तासि मैवं त्वं देवि ब्रूहि ममाग्रतः । त्रैलोक्ये कः पुमांस्तिष्ठेदग्रे शुम्भनिशुम्भयोः ॥ १२३॥
अन्येषामपि दैत्यानां सर्वे देवा न वै युधि । तिष्ठन्ति सम्मुखे देवि किं पुनः स्त्री त्वमेकिका ॥ १२४॥
इन्द्राद्याः सकला देवास्तस्थुर्येषां न संयुगे । शुम्भादीनां कथं तेषां स्त्री प्रयास्यसि सम्मुखम् ॥ १२५॥
सा त्वं गच्छ मयैवोक्ता पार्श्वं शुम्भनिशुम्भयोः । केशाकर्षणनिर्धूतगौरवा मा गमिष्यसि ॥ १२६॥
देव्युवाच ॥ १२७॥
एवमेतद् बली शुम्भो निशुम्भश्चापितादृशः । किं करोमि प्रतिज्ञा मे यदनालोचिता पुरा ॥ १२८॥
स त्वं गच्छ मयोक्तं ते यदेतत्सर्वमादृतः । तदाचक्ष्वासुरेन्द्राय स च युक्तं करोतु यत् ॥ १२९॥
॥ स्वस्ति श्रीमार्कण्डेयपुराणे सावर्णिके मन्वन्तरे देवीमाहात्म्ये देव्या दूतसंवादो नाम पञ्चमोऽध्यायः ॥ ५॥
Worship of Ambika by Indra & other devas – Sri Durga Saptashati (Chapter 4)
When that most valiant evil souled Mahishasura and his army were destroyed by the Devi, Indra and the hosts of other gods poured forth their praises to her with their voices, reverently bending down their necks and shoulders, while they looked extremely delighted with horripilation and exultation. (1-2)
Here ends the fourth chapter called ‘The Devi Stuti’ of the Devi-Mahatmya in Markandeya-Purana during the period of Savarni, the Man
॥ चतुर्थोऽध्यायः ॥
ॐ ऋषिरुवाच ॥ १॥
शक्रादयः सुरगणा निहतेऽतिवीर्ये तस्मिन्दुरात्मनि सुरारिबले च देव्या । तां तुष्टुवुः प्रणतिनम्रशिरोधरांसा वाग्भिः प्रहर्षपुलकोद्गमचारुदेहाः ॥ २॥
देव्या यया ततमिदं जगदात्मशक्त्या निःशेषदेवगणशक्तिसमूहमूर्त्या । तामम्बिकामखिलदेवमहर्षिपूज्यां भक्त्या नताः स्म विदधातु शुभानि सा नः ॥ ३॥
यस्याः प्रभावमतुलं भगवाननन्तो ब्रह्मा हरश्च न हि वक्तुमलं बलं च । सा चण्डिकाखिलजगत्परिपालनाय नाशाय चाशुभभयस्य मतिं करोतु ॥ ४॥
या श्रीः स्वयं सुकृतिनां भवनेष्वलक्ष्मीः पापात्मनां कृतधियां हृदयेषु बुद्धिः । श्रद्धा सतां कुलजनप्रभवस्य लज्जा तां त्वां नताः स्म परिपालय देवि विश्वम् ॥ ५॥
किं वर्णयाम तव रूपमचिन्त्यमेतत् किञ्चातिवीर्यमसुरक्षयकारि भूरि । किं चाहवेषु चरितानि तवाति यानि सर्वेषु देव्यसुरदेवगणादिकेषु ॥ ६॥
हेतुः समस्तजगतां त्रिगुणापि दोषैर्न ज्ञायसे हरिहरादिभिरप्यपारा | सर्वाश्रयाखिलमिदं जगदंशभूतमव्याकृता हि परमा प्रकृतिस्त्वमाद्या ॥ ७॥
यस्याः समस्तसुरता समुदीरणेन तृप्तिं प्रयाति सकलेषु मखेषु देवि । स्वाहासि वै पितृगणस्य च तृप्तिहेतुरुच्चार्यसे त्वमत एव जनैः स्वधा च ॥ ८॥
या मुक्तिहेतुरविचिन्त्यमहाव्रता त्वं अभ्यस्यसे सुनियतेन्द्रियतत्त्वसारैः । मोक्षार्थिभिर्मुनिभिरस्तसमस्तदोषै र्विद्यासि सा भगवती परमा हि देवि ॥ ९॥
शब्दात्मिका सुविमलर्ग्यजुषां निधानमुद्गीथरम्यपदपाठवतां च साम्नाम् । देवि त्रयी भगवती भवभावनाय वार्तासि सर्वजगतां परमार्तिहन्त्री ॥ १०॥
मेधासि देवि विदिताखिलशास्त्रसारा दुर्गासि दुर्गभवसागरनौरसङ्गा । श्रीः कैटभारिहृदयैककृताधिवासा गौरी त्वमेव शशिमौलिकृतप्रतिष्ठा ॥ ११॥
ईषत्सहासममलं परिपूर्णचन्द्रबिम्बानुकारि कनकोत्तमकान्तिकान्तम् । अत्यद्भुतं प्रहृतमात्तरुषा तथापि वक्त्रं विलोक्य सहसा महिषासुरेण ॥ १२॥
दृष्ट्वा तु देवि कुपितं भ्रुकुटीकराल मुद्यच्छशाङ्कसदृशच्छवि यन्न सद्यः । प्राणान् मुमोच महिषस्तदतीव चित्रं कैर्जीव्यते हि कुपितान्तकदर्शनेन ॥ १३॥
देवि प्रसीद परमा भवती भवाय सद्यो विनाशयसि कोपवती कुलानि । विज्ञातमेतदधुनैव यदस्तमेतन्नीतं बलं सुविपुलं महिषासुरस्य ॥ १४॥
ते सम्मता जनपदेषु धनानि तेषां तेषां यशांसि न च सीदति बन्धुवर्गः । धन्यास्त एव निभृतात्मजभृत्यदारा येषां सदाभ्युदयदा भवती प्रसन्ना ॥ १५॥
धर्म्याणि देवि सकलानि सदैव कर्माण्यत्यादृतः प्रतिदिनं सुकृती करोति । स्वर्गं प्रयाति च ततो भवती प्रसादाल्लोकत्रयेऽपि फलदा ननु देवि तेन ॥ १६॥
दुर्गे स्मृता हरसि भीतिमशेषजन्तोः स्वस्थैः स्मृता मतिमतीव शुभां ददासि । दारिद्र्यदुःखभयहारिणि का त्वदन्या सर्वोपकारकरणाय सदार्द्रचित्ता ॥ १७॥
एभिर्हतैर्जगदुपैति सुखं तथैते कुर्वन्तु नाम नरकाय चिराय पापम् । सङ्ग्राममृत्युमधिगम्य दिवं प्रयान्तु मत्वेति नूनमहितान्विनिहंसि देवि ॥ १८॥
दृष्ट्वैव किं न भवती प्रकरोति भस्म सर्वासुरानरिषु यत्प्रहिणोषि शस्त्रम् । लोकान्प्रयान्तु रिपवोऽपि हि शस्त्रपूता इत्थं मतिर्भवति तेष्वहितेषुसाध्वी ॥ १९॥
खड्गप्रभानिकरविस्फुरणैस्तथोग्रैः शूलाग्रकान्तिनिवहेन दृशोऽसुराणाम् । यन्नागता विलयमंशुमदिन्दुखण्डयोग्याननं तव विलोकयतां तदेतत् ॥ २०॥
दुर्वृत्तवृत्तशमनं तव देवि शीलं रूपं तथैतदविचिन्त्यमतुल्यमन्यैः । वीर्यं च हन्तृ हृतदेवपराक्रमाणां वैरिष्वपि प्रकटितैव दया त्वयेत्थम् ॥ २१॥
केनोपमा भवतु तेऽस्य पराक्रमस्य रूपं च शत्रुभयकार्यतिहारि कुत्र । चित्ते कृपा समरनिष्ठुरता च दृष्टा त्वय्येव देवि वरदे भुवनत्रयेऽपि ॥ २२॥
त्रैलोक्यमेतदखिलं रिपुनाशनेनत्रातं त्वया समरमूर्धनि तेऽपि हत्वा । नीता दिवं रिपुगणा भयमप्यपास्तम् अस्माकमुन्मदसुरारिभवं नमस्ते ॥ २३॥
शूलेन पाहि नो देवि पाहि खड्गेन चाम्बिके । घण्टास्वनेन नः पाहि चापज्यानिःस्वनेन च ॥ २४॥
प्राच्यां रक्ष प्रतीच्यां च चण्डिके रक्ष दक्षिणे । भ्रामणेनात्मशूलस्य उत्तरस्यां तथेश्वरि ॥ २५॥
सौम्यानि यानि रूपाणि त्रैलोक्ये विचरन्ति ते । यानि चात्यन्तघोराणि तै रक्षास्मांस्तथा भुवम् ॥ २६॥
खड्गशूलगदादीनि यानि चास्त्रानि तेऽम्बिके । करपल्लवसङ्गीनि तैरस्मान्रक्ष सर्वतः ॥ २७॥
ऋषिरुवाच ॥ २८॥
एवं स्तुता सुरैर्दिव्यैः कुसुमैर्नन्दनोद्भवैः । अर्चिता जगतां धात्री तथा गन्धानुलेपनैः ॥ २९॥
भक्त्या समस्तैस्त्रिदशैर्दिव्यैर्धूपैः सुधूपिता । प्राह प्रसादसुमुखी समस्तान् प्रणतान् सुरान् ॥ ३०॥
देव्युवाच ॥ ३१॥
व्रियतां त्रिदशाः सर्वे यदस्मत्तोऽभिवाञ्छितम् ॥ ३२॥
देवा ऊचुः ॥ ३३॥
भगवत्या कृतं सर्वं न किञ्चिदवशिष्यते ॥ ३४॥
यदयं निहतः शत्रुरस्माकं महिषासुरः । यदि चापि वरो देयस्त्वयास्माकं महेश्वरि ॥ ३५॥
संस्मृता संस्मृता त्वं नो हिंसेथाः परमापदः । यश्च मर्त्यः स्तवैरेभिस्त्वां स्तोष्यत्यमलानने ॥ ३६॥
तस्य वित्तर्द्धिविभवैर्धनदारादिसम्पदाम् । वृद्धयेऽस्मत्प्रसन्ना त्वं भवेथाः सर्वदाम्बिके ॥ ३७॥
ऋषिरुवाच ॥ ३८॥
इति प्रसादिता देवैर्जगतोऽर्थे तथात्मनः । तथेत्युक्त्वा भद्रकाली बभूवान्तर्हिता नृप ॥ ३९॥
इत्येतत्कथितं भूप सम्भूता सा यथा पुरा । देवी देवशरीरेभ्यो जगत्त्रयहितैषिणी ॥ ४०॥
पुनश्च गौरीदेहात्सा समुद्भूता यथाभवत् । वधाय दुष्टदैत्यानां तथा शुम्भनिशुम्भयोः ॥ ४१॥
रक्षणाय च लोकानां देवानामुपकारिणी । तच्छृणुष्व मयाख्यातं यथावत्कथयामि ते ॥ ४२॥
। ह्रीं ॐ ।
॥ स्वस्ति श्रीमार्कण्डेयपुराणे सावर्णिके मन्वन्तरे देवीमाहात्म्ये शक्रादिस्तुतिर्नाम चतुर्थोऽध्यायः ॥ ४॥
Rishi Markandeya tells his disciples in sixteen shlokas the ways and means of removing obstacles faced by devotees while reading Sri Durga Saptashati (Devi Mahatmyam). Reading of Keelakam brings blessings of Devi, spiritual harmony, peace of mind and success in all pursuits. Before commencing the Durga Saptashati chanting and after Devi Kavacham & Agrala Strotam, Goddess’s devotees generally chant Keelakam.
Kshama Prayer is done after recitation od Durga Saptashati, each time to seek forgiveness for committing deficiencies or excesses.
Verse-wise, the essence of Keelakam has been given hereunder. The verses in Sanskrit are mentioned at the end of explanations.
॥ अथ कीलकस्तोत्रम् ॥
ॐ अस्य श्रीकीलकमन्त्रस्य शिवऋषिः, अनुष्टुप् छन्दः, श्रीमहासरस्वती देवता, श्रीजगदम्बाप्रीत्यर्थं
सप्तशतीपाठाङ्गत्वेन जपे विनियोगः । ॐ नमश्चण्डिकायै ।
मार्कण्डेय उवाच ।
ॐ विशुद्धज्ञानदेहाय त्रिवेदीदिव्यचक्षुषे । श्रेयःप्राप्तिनिमित्ताय नमः सोमार्धधारिणे ॥ १॥
सर्वमेतद्विजानीयान्मन्त्राणामपि कीलकम् । सोऽपि क्षेममवाप्नोति सततं जप्यतत्परः ॥ २॥
सिद्ध्यन्त्युच्चाटनादीनि कर्माणि सकलान्यपि । एतेन स्तुवतां देवीं स्तोत्रवृन्देन भक्तितः ॥ ३॥
न मन्त्रो नौषधं तस्य न किञ्चिदपि विद्यते । विना जप्येन सिद्ध्येत्तु सर्वमुच्चाटनादिकम् ॥ ४॥
समग्राण्यपि सेत्स्यन्ति लोकशङ्कामिमां हरः । कृत्वा निमन्त्रयामास सर्वमेवमिदं शुभम् ॥ ५॥
स्तोत्रं वै चण्डिकायास्तु तच्च गुह्यं चकार सः । समाप्नोति स पुण्येन तां यथावन्निमन्त्रणाम् ॥ ६॥
सोऽपि क्षेममवाप्नोति सर्वमेव न संशयः । कृष्णायां वा चतुर्दश्यामष्टम्यां वा समाहितः ॥ ७॥
ददाति प्रतिगृह्णाति नान्यथैषा प्रसीदति । इत्थं रूपेण कीलेन महादेवेन कीलितम् ॥ ८॥
यो निष्कीलां विधायैनां चण्डीं जपति नित्यशः । स सिद्धः स गणः सोऽथ गन्धर्वो जायते ध्रुवम् ॥ ९॥
न चैवापाटवं तस्य भयं क्वापि न जायते । नापमृत्युवशं याति मृते च मोक्षमाप्नुयात् ॥ १०॥
ज्ञात्वा प्रारभ्य कुर्वीत ह्यकुर्वाणो विनश्यति । ततो ज्ञात्वैव सम्पूर्णमिदं प्रारभ्यते बुधैः ॥ ११॥
सौभाग्यादि च यत्किञ्चिद् दृश्यते ललनाजने । तत्सर्वं तत्प्रसादेन तेन जप्यमिदं शुभम् ॥ १२॥
शनैस्तु जप्यमानेऽस्मिन् स्तोत्रे सम्पत्तिरुच्चकैः । भवत्येव समग्रापि ततः प्रारभ्यमेव तत् ॥ १३॥
ऐश्वर्यं तत्प्रसादेन सौभाग्यारोग्यमेव च । शत्रुहानिः परो मोक्षः स्तूयते सा न किं जनैः ॥ १४॥
चण्डिकां हृदयेनापि यः स्मरेत् सततं नरः । हृद्यं काममवाप्नोति हृदि देवी सदा वसेत् ॥ १५॥
अग्रतोऽमुं महादेवकृतं कीलकवारणम् । निष्कीलञ्च तथा कृत्वा पठितव्यं समाहितैः ॥ १६॥
॥ इति श्रीभगवत्याः कीलकस्तोत्रं समाप्तम् ॥
अपराधसहस्त्राणि क्रियन्तेऽहर्निशं मया। दासोऽयमिति मां मत्वा क्षमस्व परमेश्वारि॥१॥
आवाहनं न जानामि न जानामि विसर्जनम्। पूजां चैव न जानामि क्षम्यतां परमेश्वारि॥२॥
मन्त्रहीनं क्रियाहीनं भक्तिहीनं सुरेश्वरि। यत्पूजितं मया देवि परिपूर्णं तदस्तु मे॥३॥
अपराधशतं कृत्वा जगदम्बेति चोच्चरेत्। यां गतिं समवाप्नोति न तां ब्रह्मादयः सुराः॥४॥
सापराधोऽस्मि शरणं प्राप्तस्त्वां जगदम्बिके। इदानीमनुकम्प्योऽहं यथेच्छसि तथा कुरू॥५॥
अज्ञानाद्विस्मृतेर्भ्रान्त्या यन्न्यूनमधिकं कृतम्। तत्सर्वं क्षम्यतां देवि प्रसीद परमेश्वरि॥६॥
कामेश्वंरि जगन्मातः सच्चिदानन्दविग्रहे। गृहाणार्चामिमां प्रीत्या प्रसीद परमेश्वरि॥७॥
गुह्यातिगुह्यगोप्त्री त्वं गुहाणास्मत्कृतं जपम्। सिद्धिर्भवतु मे देवि त्वत्प्रसादात्सुरेश्वरि॥८॥
Argala Strotam is the most famous prayer of Goddess Shakti written by Markandeya Rishi. It has a twenty-six Verse. Before commencing the Durga Saptashati (Devi Mahatmayam) chanting and after Devi Kavacham, Goddess’s devotees generally chant this, Strotam. The chanting of Argala strotam clear the impediment, obstruction, bolt, latch etc.
Mantra seeking Dharma, Artha & Kama - Chanter of this strotum can defeat all the stubborn obstacles with the power and blessing of Mother Durga. After chanting this verse, the chanter is also blessed with all the happiness with fame, success, and development. Chanter salutes to Devi Durga, who slayed the ferocious demons to grant dharma (path of righteousness), kama (fulfilment of desires) and artha (prosperity) to her devotees.
The strotam is the prayer to the Goddess Durga to bless the worldly desires and the ability to deal the problems and obstructions. The verse-wise prayer is explained hereunder. However, the strotam in Sanskrit is given at the end for benefits of all.
Note: Seeker seeks blessings from Ma Chamuda to grant him beauty, victory, glory and to destroy his (inner) enemies in all the following verses also (except last two).
॥ अथ अर्गलास्तोत्रम् ॥
ॐ अस्य श्रीअर्गलास्तोत्रमन्त्रस्य विष्णुरृषिः, अनुष्टुप् छन्दः, श्रीमहालक्ष्मीर्देवता, श्रीजगदम्बाप्रीतये सप्तशतिपाठाङ्गत्वेन जपे विनियोगः । ॐ नमश्चण्डिकायै ।
मार्कण्डेय उवाच ।
ॐ जय त्वं देवि चामुण्डे जय भूतापहारिणि । जय सर्वगते देवि कालरात्रि नमोऽस्तु ते ॥ १॥
जयन्ती मङ्गला काली भद्रकाली कपालिनी । दुर्गा शिवा क्षमा धात्री स्वाहा स्वधा नमोऽस्तु ते ॥ २॥
मधुकैटभविध्वंसि विधातृवरदे नमः । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ ३॥
महिषासुरनिर्नाशि भक्तानां सुखदे नमः । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ ४॥
धूम्रनेत्रवधे देवि धर्मकामार्थदायिनि । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ ५॥
रक्तबीजवधे देवि चण्डमुण्डविनाशिनि । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ ६॥
निशुम्भशुम्भनिर्नाशि त्रैलोक्यशुभदे नमः । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ ७॥
वन्दिताङ्घ्रियुगे देवि सर्वसौभाग्यदायिनि । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ ८॥
अचिन्त्यरूपचरिते सर्वशत्रुविनाशिनि । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ ९॥
नतेभ्यः सर्वदा भक्त्या चापर्णे दुरितापहे । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ १०॥
स्तुवद्भ्यो भक्तिपूर्वं त्वां चण्डिके व्याधिनाशिनि । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ ११॥
चण्डिके सततं युद्धे जयन्ति पापनाशिनि । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ १२॥
देहि सौभाग्यमारोग्यं देहि देवि परं सुखम् । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ १३॥
विधेहि देवि कल्याणं विधेहि विपुलां श्रियम् । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ १४॥
विधेहि द्विषतां नाशं विधेहि बलमुच्चकैः । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ १५॥
सुरासुरशिरोरत्ननिघृष्टचरणेऽम्बिके । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ १६॥
विद्यावन्तं यशस्वन्तं लक्ष्मीवन्तञ्च मां कुरु । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ १७॥
देवि प्रचण्डदोर्दण्डदैत्यदर्पनिषूदिनि । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ १८॥
प्रचण्डदैत्यदर्पघ्ने चण्डिके प्रणताय मे । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ १९॥
चतुर्भुजे चतुर्वक्त्रसंस्तुते परमेश्वरि । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ २०॥
कृष्णेन संस्तुते देवि शश्वद्भक्त्या सदाम्बिके । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ २१॥
हिमाचलसुतानाथसंस्तुते परमेश्वरि । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ २२॥
इन्द्राणीपतिसद्भावपूजिते परमेश्वरि । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ २३॥
देवि भक्तजनोद्दामदत्तानन्दोदयेऽम्बिके । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ २४॥
भार्यां मनोरमां देहि मनोवृत्तानुसारिणीम् । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ २५॥
तारिणि दुर्गसंसारसागरस्याचलोद्भवे । रूपं देहि जयं देहि यशो देहि द्विषो जहि ॥ २६॥
इदं स्तोत्रं पठित्वा तु महास्तोत्रं पठेन्नरः । सप्तशतीं समाराध्य वरमाप्नोति दुर्लभम् ॥ २७॥
॥ इति श्रीमार्कण्डेयपुराणे अर्गलास्तोत्रं समाप्तम् ॥
जय त्वं देवि चामुण्डे जय भूतापहारिणि ।
जय सर्वगते देवि कालरात्रि नमोऽस्तु ते ॥१॥
Kavacha is a Sanskrit word which means Armour. Devi Kavach is a collection of special 61 shlokas from the Markandey Purana and is part of the Durga Saptashati. This Kavacham (armour) protects the devotee in all parts of his body, in all places and in all difficulties. Every part of the body is mentioned and Devi, in all different forms, is being invoked for protection. It protects the devotee from the sufferings from all directions. Further the Goddess in various names and forms is glorified for happiness, wealth, health, power, and prosperity. It brings health, honor, wealth, and victory.
The Sanskrit Verses are mentioned at the bottom of this article.
(It is recommended that before reading the chapter (1-13) of Sri Durga Saptashati, Kavacham, Argala and Keelkam should be recited. And after reading the chapter tantroktam Devi Suktam and Kshama Yachna should be done.)
Nine forms of mother are expounded in Vedas. The nine forms mothers are:
One who remembers these nine mothers will not suffer even if he is burnt in fire, even if he has gone to war, even if he is very sad, even if he is terribly afraid of war. Anyone who remembers those names with devotion is also free of these fears and sorrows. The nine divine mothers - Kali (Chamunda), Varahi, Indrani, Vashnavi, Maheswari, Kumari, Lakshmi, Ishwari, Brahmi, ride on corpses, buffalo, Aira vat elephant, Garuda, Bull, Peacock, Lotus, Bull and Swan respectively are seen. All of them wear different types of ornaments and have different types of lusters, wear different type of gems and are seen on the chariots with very angry faces. They hold in their hands’ conch, mace, spear, plough, shield, tall spear, axe, trident, strong bow made of horns so that they can kill asuras, bless devotees and for the good of devas. (Shlokas 8-15)
The devotee chants the mantras to protect oneself in all directions, for victory, for protection of entire body & parts –
Hey strong Goddess, hey enthusiastic Goddess, hey goddess who removes fear of death, Hey Goddess who is extremely impossible to see and Hey Goddess, who increases the fear of your enemies, please protect us. (Shloka 16)
Protection in all directions (Shlokas 17-19):
Let Indrani (Power of Indra) protect me in the east, Agni (Female power of fire God, in the southeast, varahi (the power of varaha) in the south, Khadgadharini (She holds a sword), in the southwest, the power of Varuna (God of rain) in the west, the power of wind, in the northwest, Kaumari (the power of Lord Subrahmanya) in the north, Maheswari (The power of Lord Shiva) in the Northeast, Brahmani (Power of Lord Brahma) protect me at the top, Vaishnavi (Power of Vishnu) protect me below and let Chamunda who sits on a seat of Corpse thus protect me on all the ten sides.
For Victory (Shlokas 20-21):
Let Jaya (She who is Victory) stand before me, Vijaya (She who is always victorious) stand behind me, let Ajitha (She who cannot be won) stand to my left and Aparjitha (She who has never been defeated) stand on my right.
Protection of entire body (Shlokas 21 to 41):
Let Udhyothini (She who is ever prepared) protect my hair, Uma (goddess Parvati) my head, Maladhari (She who wears a garland) my forehead and Yasawini (She who is famous) my eye brows, Trinethra (She who has three eyes) the space between eye brows, Yamaganda (death to God of death) protect my nose, Sankhini (She who has a conch) the space between two eyes, Dwara Vasini (She who lives deep inside) my ears, Kalika (the black goddess) my cheeks, Sankari (Wife of Lord Parameshwara) the ear lobes, Sugandha (She who smells nice) the nose bridge, Charchiga (she who is above description) outside my mouth, lips be protected by Chandra Kala, (she who wears the crescent moon) Sarawati (Goddess of learning) my tongue, Kaumari (She who is a young girl) my teeth, chandika (she who cannot be measured) the middle of my neck, my throat be protected by Chitra Ganda(She who is picturesque), Mahamaya (great enchantress) the small tongue, Kamakshi(She who has attractive eyes) my beard, voice be protected by Sarva mangala. (She who gives all that is good), Bhadrakali (the black goddess who protects) my neck, Neelagreeva (the goddess who is blue) the back portion of my neck, Nalakoobari the neck joint, Khadgadharini (She who holds the sword) my shoulders, Vajradharini (She who holds Vajrayudha) my arms, dhandini (She who punishes) my hands, Ambika (she who is the mother of the world) protect my fingers, Sooleswari (she who holds the spear) protect my nails, Naleswari protect my abdomen, Mahadevi (The great goddess) protect my breasts and let Soka nasini (She who destroys sorrows) protect my mind, Lalitha (The goddess who is easy to attain) protect my heart, let Sooladharini (She who holds the trident) my stomach, Kamini (She who is lovable) protect my belly, Guhyeswari (She who is secret) protect my reproductive organs, sex organ be protected by Bhoothanada (She who is the ruler of all beings), my behind protected by Mahisha vahini, (She who rides on buffalo) my thighs by Bhagawathi (She who is the goddess), knees be protected by Vindhyavasini. (She who lives on Vindhya Mountains), my knee cap be protected by Mahabala (she who is very strong) who has been mentioned in the Vedas, the centre of the knee be protected by Vinayaki, (She who helps us carry out things without obstruction, the forelegs be protected by Narasimhi)(The female power of Lord Narasimha), the top of the feet be protected by Amithoujasi, the fingers of the feet be protected by Sreedhari (She who holds Maha lakshmi), the bottom of the feet by Thalavasini, Nails of the feet by Karali (She who is black with anger), hair all over the body by Oordhwakesi. (Goddess having long hair), the hair pores all over the body be protected by Kaubheri (The female power of the of Kubhera), skin be protected by Vagheeswari, (The goddess of words), Parvati (The daughter of the Mountain) protect my blood, flesh, juices bones and fat, my intestines be protected by Kala Rathri, (Goddess of Dark night) the bile be protected by Magudeswari, (Goddess who wears a crown, heart be protected by Padmavati (Goddess who sits on lotus), Choodamani (Goddess who is a great gem) protect my phlegm, the shine of my nails be protected by Jwalamukhi (She who has a face of a flame), all the joints be protected by Abhedya (She who cannot be injured), shadow be protected by Chatreswari (She who is like an umbrella) and Oh Brahmani (The female power of Lord Brahma) protect my semen, Dharmacharini (she walks on the path of Dharma), please protect my mind, intellect and my ego. Let the winds of the body viz. Prana, Apana, Vyana, Samana, Udhana. as well as fame, good name and wealth be protected by Chakreswari(She who wields the holy wheel). Hey Indrani(The female power of Lord Indra) protect my progeny and Hey Chandika (She who cannot be measured) protect my cows. Let Maha Lakshmi protect my sons, Let Bhairavi (Another name for Parvathy) protect my wife and let my way be protected by Kshemakari (She who looks after) who is victorious and lives everywhere.
Whichever part does not have protection, let all those be protected by you goddess who is the greatest and who destroys sins. (Shloka 42)
The one, who wishes all good to happen to him, should not walk a step without this Armour. One who travels to any direction protected by this armor will earn lot of money, get all sort of victory, and definitely get all his wishes fulfilled. The person will get unmatched wealth and all human beings that chant this will walk without fear, being victorious in all wars. (Shlokas 43-44)
He who daily reads this Armour of the Goddess, which is even difficult for devas to obtain, in dawn, noon and dusk with devotion would be able to realize the goddess in person. He would live for one hundred years without getting defeated in all the three worlds with no untimely death in his family. This would destroy all the poxes. All the effects artificial poisons with temporary and permanent effects would be destroyed. All the black magic done in this world, and the bad spirits which travel on the earth and in the sky, which are made in water, which can be created and which hear the suggestions like Kulaja, Mala, Shakini and dakini, the terrible spirits which travel in the ether, the ghosts which reside in the home, yakshas, gandarwahas, Rakshasas, Brahmarakshasas, Vetalas Koosmandas and Bhairavis will be destroyed by the sight of such a man. (Shlokas 45-52)
The king would honour him and for he will have the glitter of divine power and his fame will increase in this materialistic world. After reciting this Armour of the Goddess if one recites the “Devi Mahatmya (also called Chandi or Durga Sapthasathi) he would live in this world (Surrounded by forests and mountains) with sons and grandsons and in the end attain that salvation which even gods cannot get. (Shlokas 53-56)
Thus ends the Armour of the Goddess.
Reference: Kavcham, Sri Durga Saptashati, Markandaya Purana.
॥ अथ देवी कवचम् ॥
अस्य श्रीचण्डीकवचस्य ब्रह्मा ऋषिः , अनुष्टुप् छन्दः , चामुण्डा देवता , अङ्गन्यासोक्तमातरो बीजम् ,
दिग्बन्धदेवतास्तत्वम् , श्रीजगदम्बाप्रीत्यर्थे जपे विनियोगः । ॐ नमश्चण्डिकायै ।
मार्कण्डेय उवाच ।
ॐ यद्गुह्यं परमं लोके सर्वरक्षाकरं नृणाम् । यन्न कस्यचिदाख्यातं तन्मे ब्रूहि पितामह ॥ १॥
अस्ति गुह्यतमं विप्र सर्वभूतोपकारकम् । देव्यास्तु कवचं पुण्यं तच्छृणुष्व महामुने ॥ २॥
प्रथमं शैलपुत्रीति द्वितीयं ब्रह्मचारिणी । तृतीयं चन्द्रघण्टेति कूष्माण्डेति चतुर्थकम् ॥ ३॥
पञ्चमं स्कन्दमातेति षष्ठं कात्यायनी तथा । सप्तमं कालरात्रिश्च महागौरीति चाष्टमम् ॥ ४॥
नवमं सिद्धिदात्री च नवदुर्गाः प्रकीर्तिताः । उक्तान्येतानि नामानि ब्रह्मणैव महात्मना ॥ ५॥
अग्निना दह्यमानास्तु शत्रुमध्यगता रणे । विषमे दुर्गमे चैव भयार्ताः शरणं गताः ॥ ६।
न तेषां जायते किञ्चिदशुभं रणसङ्कटे । आपदं न च पश्यन्ति शोकदुःखभयङ्करीम् ॥ ७॥
यैस्तु भक्त्या स्मृता नित्यं तेषां वृद्धिः प्रजायते । ये त्वां स्मरन्ति देवेशि रक्षसि तान्न संशयः ॥ ८॥
प्रेतसंस्था तु चामुण्डा वाराही महिषासना । ऐन्द्री गजसमारूढा वैष्णवी गरुडासना ॥ ९॥
नारसिंही महावीर्या शिवदूती महाबला । माहेश्वरी वृषारूढा कौमारी शिखिवाहना ॥ १०॥
लक्ष्मीः पद्मासना देवी पद्महस्ता हरिप्रिया । श्वेतरूपधरा देवी ईश्वरी वृषवाहना ॥ ११॥
ब्राह्मी हंससमारूढा सर्वाभरणभूषिता । इत्येता मातरः सर्वाः सर्वयोगसमन्विताः ॥ १२॥
नानाभरणशोभाढ्या नानारत्नोपशोभिताः । श्रैष्ठैश्च मौक्तिकैः सर्वा दिव्यहारप्रलम्बिभिः ॥ १३॥
इन्द्रनीलैर्महानीलैः पद्मरागैः सुशोभनैः । दृश्यन्ते रथमारूढा देव्यः क्रोधसमाकुलाः ॥ १४॥
शङ्खं चक्रं गदां शक्तिं हलं च मुसलायुधम् । खेटकं तोमरं चैव परशुं पाशमेव च ॥ १५॥
कुन्तायुधं त्रिशूलं च शार्ङ्गमायुधमुत्तमम् । दैत्यानां देहनाशाय भक्तानामभयाय च ॥ १६॥
धारयन्त्यायुधानीत्थं देवानां च हिताय वै । नमस्तेऽस्तु महारौद्रे महाघोरपराक्रमे ॥ १७॥
महाबले महोत्साहे महाभयविनाशिनि । त्राहि मां देवि दुष्प्रेक्ष्ये शत्रूणां भयवर्धिनि ॥ १८॥
प्राच्यां रक्षतु मामैन्द्री आग्नेय्यामग्निदेवता । दक्षिणेऽवतु वाराही नैरृत्यां खड्गधारिणी ॥ १९॥
प्रतीच्यां वारुणी रक्षेद्वायव्यां मृगवाहिनी । उदीच्यां पातु कौबेरी ईशान्यां शूलधारिणी ॥ २०॥
ऊर्ध्वं ब्रह्माणी मे रक्षेदधस्ताद्वैष्णवी तथा । एवं दश दिशो रक्षेच्चामुण्डा शववाहना ॥ २१॥
जया मामग्रतः पातु विजया पातु पृष्ठतः । अजिता वामपार्श्वे तु दक्षिणे चापराजिता ॥ २२॥
शिखां मे द्योतिनी रक्षेदुमा मूर्ध्नि व्यवस्थिता । मालाधरी ललाटे च भ्रुवौ रक्षेद्यशस्विनी ॥ २३॥
नेत्रयोश्चित्रनेत्रा च यमघण्टा तु पार्श्वके । त्रिनेत्रा च त्रिशूलेन भ्रुवोर्मध्ये च चण्डिका ॥ २४॥
शङ्खिनी चक्षुषोर्मध्ये श्रोत्रयोर्द्वारवासिनी । कपोलौ कालिका रक्षेत् कर्णमूले तु शङ्करी ॥ २५॥
नासिकायां सुगन्धा च उत्तरोष्ठे च चर्चिका । अधरे चामृताबाला जिह्वायां च सरस्वती ॥ २६॥
दन्तान् रक्षतु कौमारी कण्ठदेशे तु चण्डिका । घण्टिकां चित्रघण्टा च महामाया च तालुके ॥ २७॥
कामाक्षी चिबुकं रक्षेद्वाचं मे सर्वमङ्गला । ग्रीवायां भद्रकाली च पृष्ठवंशे धनुर्धरी ॥ २८॥
नीलग्रीवा बहिः कण्ठे नलिकां नलकूबरी । स्कन्धयोः खड्गिनी रक्षेद् बाहू मे वज्रधारिणी ॥ २९॥
हस्तयोर्दण्डिनी रक्षेदम्बिका चाङ्गुलीषु च । नखाञ्छूलेश्वरी रक्षेत् कुक्षौ रक्षेन्नरेश्वरी ॥ ३०॥
स्तनौ रक्षेन्महादेवी मनःशोकविनाशिनी । हृदये ललिता देवी उदरे शूलधारिणी ॥ ३१॥
नाभौ च कामिनी रक्षेद् गुह्यं गुह्येश्वरी तथा । मेढ्रं रक्षतु दुर्गन्धा पायुं मे गुह्यवाहिनी ॥ ३२॥
कट्यां भगवती रक्षेदूरू मे मेघवाहना । जङ्घे महाबला रक्षेत् जानू माधवनायिका ॥ ३३॥
गुल्फयोर्नारसिंही च पादपृष्ठे तु कौशिकी । पादाङ्गुलीः श्रीधरी च तलं पातालवासिनी ॥ ३४॥
नखान् दंष्ट्रकराली च केशांश्चैवोर्ध्वकेशिनी । रोमकूपेषु कौमारी त्वचं योगीश्वरी तथा ॥ ३५॥
रक्तमज्जावसामांसान्यस्थिमेदांसि पार्वती । अन्त्राणि कालरात्रिश्च पित्तं च मुकुटेश्वरी ॥ ३६॥
पद्मावती पद्मकोशे कफे चूडामणिस्तथा । ज्वालामुखी नखज्वालामभेद्या सर्वसन्धिषु ॥ ३७॥
शुक्रं ब्रह्माणी मे रक्षेच्छायां छत्रेश्वरी तथा । अहङ्कारं मनो बुद्धिं रक्षेन्मे धर्मधारिणी ॥ ३८॥
प्राणापानौ तथा व्यानमुदानं च समानकम् । वज्रहस्ता च मे रक्षेत् प्राणान् कल्याणशोभना ॥ ३९॥
रसे रूपे च गन्धे च शब्दे स्पर्शे च योगिनी । सत्त्वं रजस्तमश्चैव रक्षेन्नारायणी सदा ॥ ४०॥
आयू रक्षतु वाराही धर्मं रक्षतु पार्वती । यशः कीर्तिं च लक्ष्मीं च सदा रक्षतु वैष्णवी ॥ ४१॥
गोत्रमिन्द्राणी मे रक्षेत् पशून् रक्षेच्च चण्डिका । पुत्रान् रक्षेन्महालक्ष्मीर्भार्यां रक्षतु भैरवी ॥ ४२॥
धनेश्वरी धनं रक्षेत् कौमारी कन्यकां तथा । पन्थानं सुपथा रक्षेन्मार्गं क्षेमङ्करी तथा ॥ ४३॥
राजद्वारे महालक्ष्मीर्विजया सतत स्थिता । रक्षाहीनं तु यत् स्थानं वर्जितं कवचेन तु ॥ ४४॥
तत्सर्वं रक्ष मे देवि जयन्ती पापनाशिनी । सर्वरक्षाकरं पुण्यं कवचं सर्वदा जपेत् ॥ ४५॥
इदं रहस्यं विप्रर्षे भक्त्या तव मयोदितम् ॥ पादमेकं न गच्छेत् तु यदीच्छेच्छुभमात्मनः ॥ ४६॥
कवचेनावृतो नित्यं यत्र यत्रैव गच्छति । तत्र तत्रार्थलाभश्व विजयः सार्वकालिकः ॥ ४७॥
यं यं चिन्तयते कामं तं तं प्राप्नोति निश्चितम् । परमैश्वर्यमतुलं प्राप्स्यते भूतले पुमान् ॥ ४८॥
निर्भयो जायते मर्त्यः सङ्ग्रामेष्वपराजितः । त्रैलोक्ये तु भवेत्पूज्यः कवचेनावृतः पुमान् ॥ ४९॥
इदं तु देव्याः कवचं देवानामपि दुर्लभम् । यः पठेत्प्रयतो नित्यं त्रिसन्ध्यं श्रद्धयान्वितः ॥ ५०॥
दैवीकला भवेत्तस्य त्रैलोक्ये चापराजितः । जीवेद्वर्षशतं साग्रमपमृत्युविवर्जितः ॥ ५१॥
नश्यन्ति व्याधयः सर्वे लूताविस्फोटकादयः । स्थावरं जङ्गमं चैव कृत्रिमं चैव यद्विषम् ॥ ५२॥
अभिचाराणि सर्वाणि मन्त्रयन्त्राणि भूतले । भूचराः खेचराश्चैव कुलजाश्चौपदेशिकाः ॥ ५३॥
सहजा कुलजा माला डाकिनी शाकिनी तथा । अन्तरिक्षचरा घोरा डाकिन्यश्च महारवाः ॥ ५४॥
ग्रहभूतपिशाचाश्च यक्षगन्धर्वराक्षसाः । ब्रह्मराक्षसवेतालाः कूष्माण्डा भैरवादयः ॥ ५५॥
नश्यन्ति दर्शनात्तस्य कवचेनावृतो हि यः । मानोन्नतिर्भवेद्राज्ञस्तेजोवृद्धिः परा भवेत् ॥ ५६॥
यशोवृद्धिर्भवेत् पुंसां कीर्तिवृद्धिश्च जायते । तस्मात् जपेत् सदा भक्तः कवचं कामदं मुने ॥ ५७॥
जपेत् सप्तशतीं चण्डीं कृत्वा तु कवचं पुरा । निर्विघ्नेन भवेत् सिद्धिश्चण्डीजपसमुद्भवा ॥ ५८॥
यावद्भूमण्डलं धत्ते सशैलवनकाननम् । तावत्तिष्ठति मेदिन्यां सन्ततिः पुत्रपौत्रिकी ॥ ५९॥
देहान्ते परमं स्थानं सुरैरपि सुदुर्लभम् । प्राप्नोति पुरुषो नित्यं महामायाप्रसादतः ॥ ६०॥
तत्र गच्छति गत्वासौ पुनश्चागमनं नहि । लभते परमं स्थानं शिवेन समतां व्रजेत् ॥ ६१॥
॥ इति श्रीमार्कण्डेयपुराणे हरिहरब्रह्मविरचितं देवीकवचं समाप्तम् ॥