On the anecdote of Manasâ
1-30. Nârâyana said :– O Nârada! I will now speak of the Dhyânam and the method of worship of S’rî Devî Manasâ, as stated in the Sâma Veda. Hear. “I meditate on the Devî Manasâ, Whose colour is fair like that of the white champaka flower, whose body is decked all over with jewel ornaments, whose clothing is purified by fire, whose sacred thread is the Nâgas (serpent), who is full of wisdom, who is the foremost of great Jñanins, who is the Presiding deity of the Siddhas, Who Herself is a Siddha and who bestows Siddhis to all.” O Muni! Thus meditating on Her, one should present Her, flowers, scents, ornaments, offerings of food and various other articles, pronouncing the principal Seed Mantra.
O Nârada! The twelve lettered Siddha Mantra, to be mentioned below, yields to the Bhaktas their desires like the Kalpa Tree. Now the Radical mantra as stated in the Vedas is “Om Hrîm S’rîm Klîm Aim Manasâ Devyai Svâhâ.” Repetition of this, five lakhs of times, yields success to one who repeats. He who attains success in this mantra gets unbounded name and fame in this world. Poison becomes nectar to him and he himself becomes famous like Dhanvantari. O Nârada! If anybody bathes on any Samkrânti day (when the sun enters from one sign to another) and going to a private room (hidden room), invokes the Devî Manasâ Îs’ânâ and worships Her with devotion, or makes sacrifices of animals before the Devî on the fifth day of the fortnight, he becomes certainly wealthy, endowed with sons and name and fame. Thus I have described to you the method of worship of Manasâ Devî. Now hear the anecdote of the Devî as I heard from Dharma. In olden days, men became greatly terrified on earth from snakes and took refuge of Kas’yapa, the supreme amongst the Munis. The Maharsi Kas’yapa became very afraid. He then with Brahmâ, and by His command composed a mantra following the principal motto of the Vedas. While composing this mantra, he intensely thought of the Devî, the Presiding Deity of that Mantra, through the power of his Tapasyâ and through the mental power, the Devî Manasâ appeared and was named so, as She was produced from the sheer influence of mind. On being born, the girl went to the abode of S’ankara in Kailâs’a and began to worship Him and chant hymns to Him with devotion. For one thousand Divine years, the daughter of Kas’yapa served Mahâdeva when He became pleased. He gave her the Great Knowledge, made Her recite the Sâma Veda and bestowed to her the eight-lettered Krisna mantra which is like the Kalpa Tree. S’rîm Hrîm Klîm Krisnâya Namah was the eight lettered Mantra. She got from Him the Kavacha (amulet) auspicious to the three worlds, the method of worship and all the rules of Purascharana (repetition of the name of a deity attended with burnt offerings, oblations, etc.) and went by His command to perform in Puskara very hard austerities. There she worshipped Krisna for the three Yugas. S’rî Krisna then appeared before Her. On seeing Krisna, immediately the girl, worn out by austerities, worshipped Him, and she was also worshipped by S’rî Krisna. Krisna granted her the boon, “Let you be worshipped throughout the world” and departed. O Nârada! She was thus first worshipped by the Supreme Spirit, the Devî Krisna; secondly by S’ankara; thirdly by the Maharsi Kas’yapa and the Devas. Then she was worshipped by the Munis, Manus, Nâgas, and men; and She became widely renowned in the three worlds. Kas’yapa gave Her over to the hands of Jaratkâru Muni. At the request of the Brâhmin Kas’yapa, the Muni Jarat Kâru married Her. After the marriage, one day, being tired with his long work of Tapasyâ, Jarat Kâru laid his head on the hip and loins of his married wife and fell fast asleep. Gradually the evening came in. The sun set. Then Manasâ thought, “If my husband fails to perform the Sandhyâ, the daily duty of the Brâhmanas, he would be involved in the sin of Brahmahatyâ. It is definitely stated in the S’âstras, that if any Brâhmana does not perform his Sandhyâ in the morning and in the evening, he becomes wholly impure and the sins Brahmahattyâ and other crimes come down on his head.” Arguing thus, these thoughts in her mind, as commanded by the Vedas, at last she awakened her husband, who then got up from his sleep.
31-60. The Muni Jarat Kâru said :– “O Chaste One! I was sleeping happily. Why have you thus interrupted my sleep? All his vows turn out useless who injures her husband. Her tapas, fastings, gifts, and other meritorious works all come to vain who do things unpleasant to her husband. If she worships her husband, she is said to have worshipped S’rî Krisna. For the sake of fulfilling the vows of the chaste women, Hari himself becomes their husbands. All sorts of charities, gifts, all sacrifices, fastings, practising all the virtues, keeping to truth, worshipping all the Devas, nothing can turn out equal to even one-sixteenth part of serving one’s husband. She ultimately goes with her husband to the region of Vaikuntha, who serves her husband in this holy land Bhârata. She comes certainly of a bad family who does unpleasant acts to her husband or who uses unpleasant words to her husband. She goes to the Kumbhîpâka hell as long as the Sun and Moon last and then she becomes born as a Chandâlî, without husband and son.” Speaking thus, Jarat Kâru, the best of the Munis, became angry and his lips began to tremble. Seeing this, the best Manasâ, shivering with fear, addressed her husband :– I have broken your sleep and awakened you, fearing you might miss your time of Sandhyâ. I have committed an offence. Punish me as you think. I know that a man goes to the Kâlasûtra hell as long as the Sun and Moon last in this world, who throws an obstacle when any man eats, sleeps or enjoys with the opposite sex. O Nârada! Thus saying, the Devî Manasâ fell down at the feet of her husband and cried again and again. On the other hand, knowing the Muni angry, and ready to curse her, the Sun came there with Sandhyâ Devî. And He humbly spoke to him with fear :– “O Bhagavân! Seeing Me going to set, and fearing that you may miss Dharma, your chaste wife has awakened you. O Brâhmin! Now I am also under your refuge; forgive me. O Bhagavân! You should not curse Me. The more so, a Brâhmana’s heart is as tender as the fresh butter. The anger of a Brâhman lasts only half the twinkling of an eye (Ksan). When a Brâhmana becomes angry, he can burn all this world and can make a new creation. So who can possess an influence like a Brâhmana. A Brâhmin is a part of Brahmâ; he is shining day and night with the Tejas of Brahmâ. A Brâhmana med itates always on the Eternal Light of Brahmâ.” O Nârada! Hearing the words of the Sun, the Brâhmin became satisfied and blessed Him. The Sun also went to His own place, thus blessed daily. To keep his promise, the Brâhmin Jaratkâru quitted Manasâ. She became very sorry and began to cry aloud with pain and anguish. Being very much distressed by the then danger, she remembered Her Îsta Deva, Mahâdeva, Brahmâ, Hari and Her father Maharsi Kas’yapa. On the very instant when Manasâ remembered S’rî Krisna, the Lord of the Gopis, Mahâdeva, Brahmâ and Maharsi Kas’yapa appeared there. Then seeing his own desired Deity S’rî Krisna, superior to Prakriti, beyond the attributes, Jaratkâru began to praise Him and bowed down to Him repeatedly. Then bowing down to Mahâdeva, Brahmâ and Kas’yapa, he enquired why they had come there. Brahmâ, then, instantly bowed down at the lotus feet of Hrisîkes’a and spoke in befitting words at that time if the Brâhmin Jaratkâru leaves at all his legal wife, devoted to her own Dharma, he should first of all have a son born of her to fulfil his Dharma. O Muni! Any man can quit his wife, after he has impregnated her and got a son. But if without having a son, he leaves his wife, then all his merits are lost as all water leaks out of a sieve or a strainer. O Nârada! Hearing thus the words of Brahmâ, the Muni Jaratkâru by his Yogic power recited a Mantra and touching the navel of Manasâ spoke to her :– “O Manasâ! A son will be born in your womb self-controlled, religious, and best of the Brâhmanas.
61-77. That son will be fiery, energetic, renowned, well-qualified the foremost of the Knowers of the Vedas, a great Jñânin and the best of the Yogis. That son is a true son, indeed, who uplifts his family who is religious and devoted to Hari. At his birth all the Pitris dance with great joy. And the wife is a true wife who is devoted to her husband, good-natured and sweetspeaking and she is religious, she is the mother of sons, she is the woman of the family and she is the preserver of the family. He is the true friend, indeed, the giver of one’s desired fruits, who imparts devotion to Hari. That father is a true father who shows the way to devotion to Hari. And She is the True Mother, through whom this entering into wombs ceases for ever, yea, for ever! That sister is the true kind sister from whom the fear of Death vanishes. That Guru is the Guru who gives the Visnu Mantra and the true devotion to Visnu. That Guru is the real bestower of knowledge who gives the Jñânam by which S’rî Krisna is meditated in whom this whole universe, moving and non-moving from the Brahmâ down to a blade of grass, is appearing and disappearing. There is no doubt in this. What knowledge can be superior to that of S’rî Krisna. The knowledge derived from the Vedas, or from the sacrifices or from any other source is not superior to the service to S’rî Krisna. The devotion and knowledge of S’rî Hari is the Essence of all knowledge; all else is vain and mockery. It is through this Real Knowledge; that this bondage from this world is severed. But the Guru who does not impart this devotion and knowledge of S’rî Hari is not the real Guru; rather he is an enemy that leads one to bondage. Verily he kills his disciple when he does not free him. He can never be called a Guru, father or friend who does not free his disciple from the pains in the various wombs and from the pains of death. Verily he can never be called a friend who does not show the way to the Undecaying S’rî Krisna, the Source of the Highest Bliss. So, O Chaste One! You better worship that Undecaying Para Brahmâ S’rî Krisna, Who is beyond the attributes. O Beloved! I have left you out of a pretence; please excuse me for this. The chaste women are always forgiving; never they become angry because they are born of Sattvagunas. Now I go to Puskara for Tapasyâ; you better go wherever you like. Those who have no desire have their minds always attached to the lotus feet of S’rî Krisna.” O Nârada! Hearing the words of Jaratkâru, the Devî Manasâ became very much distressed and bewildered with great sorrow. Tears began to flow from her eyes. She then humbly spoke to her dearest husband :– “O Lord! I have not committed any such offence, as you leave me altogether when I have thus broken your sleep.
78-115. However kindly show Thyself to me when I will recollect you. The bereavement of one’s friend is painful; more than that is the bereavement of a son. Again one’s husband is dearer than one hundred sons; so the bereavement of one’s husband is the heaviest of all. To women, the husband is the most beloved of all earthly things; hence he is called Priya, i. e., dear. As the heart of one who has only one son is attached to that son, as the heart of a Vaisnava is attached to S’rî Hari; as the mind of one-eyed man to his one eye, as the mind of the thirsty is attached to water, as the mind of the hungry is attached to food, as the mind of the passionate is attached to lust, as the mind of a thief is attached to the properties of others, as the mind of a lewd man to his prostitute, as the mind of the learned is attached to the S’âstras, as the mind of a trader is attached to his trade, so the minds of chaste women are attached to their husbands.” Thus saying, Manasâ fell down at the feet of her husband. Jaratkâru, the ocean of mercy, then, took her for a moment on his lap and drenched her body with tears from his eyes. The Devî Manasâ, too, distressed at the bereavement of her husband also drenched the lap of the Muni with tears from her eyes. Some time after, the true knowledge arose in them and they both became free from fear. Jaratkâru then enlightened his wife and asked her to meditate on the lotus feet of S’rî Krisna the Supreme Spirit repeatedly; thus saying he went away for his Tapasyâ. Manasâ, distressed with sorrow, went to his Îsta Deva Mahâdeva on Kailâs’a. The auspicious S’iva and Pârvatî both consoled her with knowledge and advice. Some days after, on an auspicious they and on an auspicious moment she gave birth to a son born in part of Nârâyana, and as the Guru of the Yogis and as the Preceptor of the Jñânins. When the child was in mother’s womb, he heard the highest knowledge from the mouth of Mahâdeva; therefore he was born as a Yogîndra and the Spiritual Teacher of the Jñânins. On his birth, Bhagavân S’ankara performed his natal ceremonies and performed various auspicious ceremonies. The Brâhmanas chanted the Vedas for the welfare of the child; various wealth and jewels and Kirîtas and invaluable gems were distributed by S’ankara to the Brâhmanas; and Pârvatî gave one lakh cows and various jewels to others. After some days, Mahâdeva taught him the four Vedas with their Angas (six limbs) and gave him, at last, the Mrityumjaya Mantra. As in Manasâ’s mind there reigned the devotion to her husband, the devotion to her Îsta Deva and Guru, the child’s name was kept Âstika. Âstika then got the Mahâ Mantra from S’ankara and by his command went to Puskara to worship Visnu, the Supreme Spirit. There he practised tapasyâ for three lakh divine years. And then he returned to Kailâs’a, to bow down to the great Yogi and the Lord S’ankara, Then, bowing down to S’ankara, he remained there for some time when Manasâ with her son Âstika went to the hermitage of Kas’yapa, her father. Seeing Manasâ with son, the Maharsi’s gladness knew no bounds. He fed innumerable Brâhmanas for the welfare of the child, and distributed lakhs and lakhs of jewels. The joy of Aditi and Diti (the wives of Kas’yapa) knew no bounds; Manasâ remained there for a long, long time with his son. O Child! Hear now an anecdote on this. One day due to a bad Karma, a Brâhmana cursed the king Pariksit, the son of Abhimanyu; one Risi’s son named S’ringî, sipping the water of the river Kaus’ikî cursed thus :– “When a week expires, the snake Taksaka will bite you, and you will be burnt with the poison of that snake Taksaka.” Hearing this, the King Pariksit, to preserve his life, went to a place, solitary where wind even can have no access and he lived there. When the week was over, Dhanvantari saw, while he was going on the road, the snake Taksaka who was also going to bite the king. A conversation and a great friendship arose between them; Taksaka gave him voluntarily a gem; and Dhanvantari, getting it, became pleased and went back gladly to his house. The king Pariksit was lying on his bedstead when Taksaka bit the king. The king died soon and went to the next world. The king Janamejaya then performed the funeral obsequies of his father and commenced afterwards the Sarpa Yajñâ (a sacrifice where the snakes are the victims). In that sacrifice, innumerable snakes gave up their lives by the Brahmâ Teja (the fire of the Brâhmins). At this, Taksaka became terrified and took refuge of Indra. The Brâhmins, then, in a body, became, ready to burn Taksaka along with Indra, when, Indra and the other Devas went to Manasâ. Mahendra, bewildered with fear, began to chant hymns to Manasâ. Manasâ called his own son Âstika who then went to the sacrificial assembly of the king Janamejaya and begged that the lives of Indra and Taksaka be spared. The king, then, at the command of the Brâhmanas, granted their lives. The king, then, completed his sacrifice and gladly gave the Daksinâs to the Brâhmins. The Brâhmanas, Munis, and Devas collected and went to Manasâ and worshipped Her separately and chanted hymns to Her. Indra went there with the various articles and He worshipped Manasâ with devotion and with great love and care; and He chanted hymns to Her. Then bowing down before Her, and under the instructions of Brahmâ, Visnu and Mahes’a, offered her sixteen articles, sacrifices and various other good and pleasant things. O Nârada! Thus worshipping Her, they all went to their respective places. Thus I have told you the anecdote of Manasâ. What more do you want to hear. Say. Nârada said :– “O Lord! How did Indra praise Her and what was the method of His worshipping Her; I want to hear all this.”
116-124. Nârâyana said :– Indra first took his bath; and, performing Âchamana and becoming pure, He put on a fresh and clean clothing and placed Manasâ Devî on a jewel throne. Then reciting the Vedic mantras he made Her perform Her bath by the water of the Mandâkinî, the celestial river Ganges, poured from a jewel jar and then He made Her put on the beautiful clothing, uninflammable by fire. Then He caused sandalpaste to be applied to Her body all over with devotion and offered water for washing Her feet and Arghya, an offering of grass and flowers and rice, etc., as a token of preliminary worship. First of all the six Devatâs Ganes’a, Sun, Fire, Visnu, S’iva, and S’ivâ were worshipped. Then with the ten lettered mantra, “Om Hrîm S’rîm Manasâ Devyai Svâhâ” offered all the offerings to Her. Stimulated by the God Visnu, Indra worshipped with great joy the Devî with sixteen articles so very rare to any other person. Drums and instruments were sounded. From the celestial heavens, a shower of flowers was thrown on the head of Manasâ. Then, at the advice of Brahmâ, Visnu and Mahes’a, the Devas and the Brâhmanas, Indra, with tears in his eyes, began to chant hymns to Manasâ, when his whole body was thrilled with joy and hairs stood on their ends.
125-145. Indra said :– “O Devî Manase! Thou standest the highest amongst the chaste women. Therefore I want to chant hymns to Thee. Thou art higher than the highest. Thou art most supreme. What I now praise Thee? Chanting hymns is characterised by the description of one’s nature; so it is said in the Vedas. But, O Prakriti! I am unable to ascertain and describe Thy qualities. Thou art of the nature of S’uddha Sattva (higher than the pure sattva unmixed with any other Gunas); Thou art free from anger and malice. The Muni Jaratkâru could not forsake Thee; therefore it was that he prayed for Thy separation before. O Chaste One! I have now worshipped Thee. Thou art an object of worship as my mother Aditi is. Thou art my sister full of mercy; Thou art the mother full of forgiveness. O Sures’varî! It is through Thee that my wife, sons and my life are saved. I am worshipping Thee. Let Thy love be increased. O World-Mother! Thou art eternal; though Thy worship is extant everywhere in the universe; yet I worship Thee to have it extended further and further. O Mother! Those who worship Thee with devotion on the Sankrânti day of the month of Âsûdha, or on the Nâga Pañchamî day, or on the Sankrânti day of every month or on every day, they get their sons and grandsons, wealth and grains increased and become themselves famous, well gratified, learned and renowned. If anybody does not worship Thee out of ignorance, rather if he censures Thee, he will be bereft of Laksmî and he will be always afraid of snakes. Thou art the Griha Laksmî of all the householders and the Râja Laksmî of Vaikuntha. Bhagavân Jarat Kâru, the great Muni, born in part of Nârâyana, is Thy husband. Father Kas’yapa has created Thee mentally by his power of Tapas and fire to preserve us; Thou art his mental creation; hence thy name is Manasâ. Thou Thyself hast become Siddha Yoginî in this world by thy mental power; hence thou art widely known as Manasâ Devî in this world and worshipped by all. The Devas always worship Thee mentally with devotion; hence the Pundits call Thee by the name of Manasâ. O Devî! Thou always servest Truth, hence Thou art of the nature of Truth. He certainly gets Thee who always thinks of Thee verily as of the nature of truth.” O Nârada! Thus praising his sister Manasâ and receiving from her the desired boon, Indra went back, dressed in his own proper dress, to his own abode. The Devî Manasâ, then, honored and worshipped everywhere, and thus worshipped by her brother, long lived in Her father’s house, with Her son. One day Surabhi (the heavenly cow) came from the Goloka and bathed Manasâ with milk and worshipped Her with great devotion and revealed to Her all the Tattva Jñânas, to be kept very secret. (This is now made the current story wherever any Lingam suddenly becomes visible.) O Nârada! Thus worshipped by the Devas and Surabhi, the Devî Manasâ went to the Heavenly regions. O Muni! One gets no fear from snakes who recites this holy Stotra composed by Indra and worships Manasâ; his family descendants are freed from the fear due to snakes. If anybody becomes Siddha in this Stotra, poison becomes nectar to him. Reciting the stotra five lakhs of times makes a man Siddha in this Stotra. So much so that he can sleep on a bed of snakes and he can ride on snakes.
Here ends the Forty-eighth Chapter of the Ninth Book on the anecdote of Manasâ in the Mahâ Purânam S’rî Mad Devî Bhâgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyâsa.