tasya khila bhAho


harivamsha parva
ch 29

divodAsa charitam
legend of divodAsa




vaishaMpAyana uvAcha – vaishampAyana continued

rambho.anapatyaH tatra AsIt vaMshaM vakShyAmi anenasaH |

So far you have talked about the descendants of amA-vasu; and about king raji, one from the sons of Ayu, namely nahuSha, vR^iddha-sharma, rambha, raji, and anenasa; another son of Ayu, namely rambha, is issueless; now, let us take up the dynasty of anena...

anenasaH suto rAjA pratikShatro mahAyashAH || 1-29-1

anena’s son is king pratikShatra; from him forward the descendant princes are like this:

pratikShatra sutaH chApi sR^i~njayo nAma vishrutaH |
sR^i~njayasya jayaH putro vijayaH tasya cha AtmajaH || 1-29-2
vijayasya kR^itiH putraH tasya haryashvataH sutaH |
haryashvataH uto rAjA sahadevaH pratApavAn || 1-29-3
sahadevasya dharmAtmA nadIna iti vishrutaH |
nadInasya jayatseno jayatsenasya saMkR^itiH || 1-29-4
saMkR^iteH api dharmAtmA kShatradharmA mahAyashAH |

prati-kShatra --> sR^i~njaya --> jaya --> vijaya --> kR^iti --> haryashva -->sahadeva --> nadIna -->  jayatsena --> saMkR^iti --> kShatra-dharma...

anenasaH samAkhyAtAH kShatra-vR^iddhasya me shR^iNu || 1-29-5

That being the lineage from anena, now you know something about the lineage of kShatra -vR^iddha i.e., the descendants of vR^iddha-sharma, another son of Ayu...

kShatra-vR^iddhasya= vR^iddha-sharmA paramparyAyasya... nk

kShatra-vR^iddha AtmajaH tatra sunahotro mahAyashAH |
sunahotrasya dAyAdAH trayaH parama-dhArmikAH || 1-29-6
kAshaH shalashcha dvAvetau tathA gR^itsamadaH prabhuH |

kShatra-vR^iddha begot sunahotra who begot three sons, namely kAsha, shala, and gR^itsamada...

putro gR^itsamadasya api shunako yasya shaunakaH || 1-29-7
brAhmaNAH kShatriyAH chaivaM vaishyAH shUdrAH tathaiva cha |

gR^itsa-mada’s brAhmaNa son is shunaka whose sons are shaunaka-s who also are brAhmaNa-s, whereas the other descendants of gR^itsa-mada have become kshatriya-s, vaishya-s and even shUdrA-s...

shala AtmajaH cha arShTiSheNaH tanayaH tasya kAshakaH || 1-29-8
kAshasya kAshayo rAjan putro dIrgha-tapAH tathA |
dhanvaH tu dIrgha-tapaso vidvAn dhanvantariH tataH || 1-29-9
tapaso.ante sumahato jAto vR^iddhasya dhImataH |
punaH dhanvantariH devo mAnuSheShiu iha jaj~nivAn || 1-29-10

The lineage of shala, the second son of sunahotra, is like this: shala --> arShTiSheNa --> kAshaka --> kAshaya, or kAshi --> dIrgha-tapa --> dhanva, or also called as dhanvantari... dIrgha-tapa was already old, but he undertook a long time ascesis and its end he got dhanwantari, the god of medicine, descended in human form, as his son...

janamejaya uvAcha – janamejaya querried

kathaM dhanvantariH devo mAnuSheShu iha jaj~nivAn |
etat veditum ichChAmi tat me brUhi yathAtatham || 1-29-11

“How and why god dhanvantari incarnated as human... I would like to listen about it... please tell me the details...

vaishaMpAyana uvAcha – vaishampAyana replied

dhanvantareH sambhavo.ayaM shrUyatAM bharatarShabha |
jAtaH sa hi samudrAt tu mathyamAne purA amR^ite || 1-29-12
utpannaH kalashAt pUrvaM sarvataH cha shriyA vR^itaH |
abhyasan siddhi kArye hi viShNuM dR^iShTvA hi tasthivAn || 1-29-13
abjaH tvam iti hovAcha tasmAt abjaH tu sa smR^itaH |

”Oh, yes, I will tell you about the emanation of dhanvantari... endowed with an all-round magnificence he originally emerged from the Milky Ocean while it was being churned for amrita... on emerging from ocean he stood fixedly before viShNu just meditating upon him waiting for assignment of duties... and viShNu said lo him, “because you are born out of an ocean, your will be known as abja, ocean’s kin...” thus dhanvantari is also known as abja, reminiscent of brahma...

kalashAt = samudrAt; viShNuM abhyasan= viShNuM dhyAyan, pUjayan.

abjaH provAcha viShNuM vai tava putro.asmi vai prabho || 1-29-14
vidhatsva bhAgaM sthAnaM cha mama loke sureshvara |

dhanvantari then said to viShNu, “Oh, god, whether it is ocean or otherwhere, I am your son – Apo narA proktA -  pray allot me a place at your feet, and make me eligible for some dole from vedic rituals...

Some read loke sthAnaM as some place somewhere else; who wishes to go elsewhere when he is in the audience of viShNu.

evam uktaH sa dR^iShTvA vai tathyaM provAcha taM prabhuH || 1-29-15
kR^ito yaj~na-vibhAgo hi yaj~niyaiH hi suraiH purA |
deveShu viniyuktaM hi viddhi hotraM maharShibhiH || 1-29-16
na shakyam upahomA vai tubhyaM kartuM kadAchana |
arvAk-bhUtaH asi devAnAM putra tvaM tu na hi IshvaraH || 1-29-17

Examining the possibilities for his request, viShNu said this, “Practically, there is a riddle in it... you must know that the ancient sages have already apportioned primary ritual-offertories among gods and gods are using them up... and in any case, you cannot be given petty offertories, as well... oh, son, your emergence is much later to the gods, hence you are no deus optimus, a full-fledged god... but you are a tutelar numen insofar as health science is concerned...

“So you have to do something physical and palpable to living beings, and then seek placement in heavens... hence, take birth as a human...

In fact, none among those that have emerged from the churning of Milk Ocean has vedic idolisation.

 Many have emerged then like: 1. the Háláhala or Kálakúta poison, swallowed by Śiva: 2. Váruní or Surá, the goddess of wine 3. the horse Uchchaiśśravas, taken by Indra: 4. Kaustubha, the jewel worn by Vishnu: 5. the moon: 6. Dhanwantari, with the Amrita in his Kamandalu, or vase; 7. the goddess Padmá or Śrí: 8. the Apsarasas, or nymphs of heaven: 9. Surabhi, or the cow of plenty: 10. the Párijáta tree, or tree of heaven: 11. Airávata, the elephant taken by Indra. The Matsya adds, 12. the umbrella taken by Varuna: 13. the earrings taken by Indra, and given to Adití – v.p., Wilson.

The moon emerged here may not be taken as soma, the vedic god.

dvitIyAyAM tu saMbhUtyAM loke khyAtiM gamiShyasi |
aNimAdiH cha te siddhiH garbhasthasya bhaviShyati || 1-29-18
tena eva tvaM sharIreNa devatvaM prApsyase prabho |
charu mantraiH vrataiH jApyaiH yakShyanti tvAM dvi-jAtayaH || 1-29-19

In your second emergence you will attain reputation in consideration of your undertaking, and to make your undertaking feasible, you will attain certain potentialities, like the eightfold yogic capabilities aNima, laghima, mahima etc., in your foetal state itself... by that alone, by your second emergence alone, you will attain godhood, whereafter brAhmaNa-s will look up to you with potions, hymns, religious observances, meditation etc...

dvitIyAyAM saMbhUtyAM= in your second emergence.

aShTadhA tvaM punaH cha evam AyurvedaM vidhAsyasi |
avashyabhAvI hi artho.ayaM prAk dR^iShTaH tu abja-yoninA || 1-29-20
dvitIyaM dvAparaM prApya bhavitA tvaM na saMshayaH |
imaM tasmai varaM dattvA viShNuH antardadhe punaH || 1-29-21

Because hitherto uncommon ‘disease’ is going to become a common feature from the later part of dwApara era, you have to segregate Ayur-veda, the health-science, into eight broad categories for an easy applicability... brahma thought all these things beforehand and facilitated your emergence... hence, without a second thought, you have take up your second emergence in the forthcoming second dwApara era to help living beings on earth... let us talk about placements and offertories later...” giving this boonlike entrustment to dhanvantari, viShNu vanished there itself...

dvitIye dvAparaM prApte saunahotriH sa kAshi-rAT |
putra kAmaH tapaH tepe dhinvan dIrgha tapAH tadA || 1-29-22
prapadye devatAM tAM tu yA me putraM pradAsyati |
abjaM devaM suta arthAya tat ArAdhitavAn nR^ipaH || 1-29-23

When the second dwApara era has come, the descendant of sunahotra who at that time is the king of kAshi province, namely dIrgha-tapa, is sonless... on deliberating much as to which god is to be propitiated... which god gives which kind of son, etc pros and cons, that king finally meditated upon dhanvantari seeking bestowal of a son...

dhinvan= prIyamANa – while being propitiated; abjaM= water-born, here dhanvantari.

tataH tuShTaH sa bhagavAn abjaH provAcha taM nR^ipam |
yat ichChasi varaM brUhi tat te dAsyAmi suvrata || 1-29-24

Pleased with his ascesis dhanvantari appered before him and said, “Oh, king, whatever boon you wish to ask, you may ask... I will grant it...”

nR^ipa uvAcha – king said

bhagavan yadi tuShTaH tvaM putro me khyAtimAn bhava |
tathA iti samanuj~nAya tatra eva AntaradhIyata || 1-29-25
tasya gehe samutpanno devo dhanvantariH tadA |
kAshi-rAjo mahArAja sarva roga praNAshanaH || 1-29-26

The king said, “Oh, god, if you are pleased with my ascesis, then please become a reputed son of mine...” To this dhanvantari said ‘so be it’ and disappeared from there... then that eliminator of every kind of disease, namely dhanvantari, took birth as the son king of kAshi...

AyurvedaM bharadvAjAt prApya iha bhiShjAM kriyAm |
tam aShTadhA punaH vyasya shiShyebhyaH pratyapAdayat || 1-29-27

Studying Ayur-veda from sage bharadwAja, he segregated medical practise into eight categories, and taught the same to his medicos...

Here, the word vyasya is used for segregating one in to eight divisions. It is not segregating actually, but it is sectorising a circle as in pie-charting, always keeping the main subject latched onto the centre. This is what vyAsa has done to veda-s, purANA-s etc.

kAya bAla graha UrdhvA~Nga shalya daMSTrA jarA vR^iSAn |
aSTau a~NgAni tasya AhuH chikitsA yeSu saMshritA ||

kAya chikitsa= general treatment to body; bAla chikitsa = paediatrics; graha= when possessed by evil sprits etc; Urdhva-a~Nga chikitsa = for upper parts, say head, eyes, ears etc; shalya chikitsa = for slashes, gashes etc., or using surgery, as well; daMSTra chikitsa= treatment for poisonous fang bites; jarA chikitsa= for old age problems; vR^iSa = vAjikaraNa= for debilities, and for extending youth by using decoctions etc.

dhanvantareH tu tanayaH ketumAn iti vishrutaH |
atha ketumataH putro vIro bhIma-rathaH smR^itaH || 1-29-28
suto bhImarathasya api divodAsaH prajeshvaraH |
divodAsaH tu dharmAtmA vArANasi adhipaH abhavat || 1-29-29

dhanvantari’s son is ketumAn whose son is bhIma-ratha from whom divodAsa has emerged as son... later, this righteous divodasa has become the king of kAshi...

etasmin eva kAle tu purIM vArANasIM nR^ipa |
shUnyAM nivAsayAmAsa kShemako nAma rAkShasaH || 1-29-30
shaptA hi sA matimatA nikuMbhena mahAtmanA |
shUnyA varSha-sahasraM vai bhavitrI nAtra saMshayaH || 1-29-31
tasyAM tu shaptamAtrAyAM divodAsaH prajeshvaraH |
viShaya-ante purIM ramyAM gomatyAM saMnyaveshayat || 1-29-32

But the city of kAshi became desolated when divodasa was ruling it, owing to a curse of nikumbha, an ethereal-attendant of god shiva, who cursed it to remain desolated for a thousand years to come... helpless divodasa also left the uninhibited city kAshi when it is reeling under curse, and lived in a cosy dwelling at gomati, on the fringes of kAshi... at that time, even a demon named kshemaka sneaked into that depopulated city to dwell...

Some read nikumbha as an epithet to vinAyaka, the son of shiva-pArvati, and take this nikumbha as vinAyaka himself, because vinAyaka has tusks that resemble dantaka plant - Croton Polyandrum;

kumbha means variously: the frontal globe or prominence on the upper part of the forehead of an elephant;

kumbha - a small tree (the seeds of which are used in medicine , commonly; Katphala) L. ; Bignonia suaveolens L. ; Pistia Stratiotes L. ; another plant (commonly Romas3a) L. ; the plant Croton polyandrum L. ; the plant Myrica sapida; the plant Ipomoea Turpethum L. ; a fragrant resin (guggulu) , or the plant which bears it – etrc etc... where all these medicinal or fragrant oil plants indicate gaNapati as a – rasa AdhAra bhUta devata -  god who is the basis for all these factors.

Further, the text says later that an idol of this nikumbha is installed at the ingress of kAshi. We install idols of pleasant looking gods but not fierce looking rudra-gaNa-s like bhringi, shringi, vIrabhadra et al. So, idol of vinayaka alone is in stalled at the entrance to kAshi. By these arguments the name nikumbha is taken for vinAyaka.

bhadra-shreNyasya pUrvaM tu purI vArANasi iti abhUt |
bhadrashreNyasya putrANAM shatam uttama-dhanvinAm || 1-29-33
hatvA niveshayAmAsa divodAso nararShabhaH |
bhadrashreNyasya tat rAjyaM hR^itaM tena balIyasA || 1-29-34

Even earlier to divodasa’s taking the reins of kAshi, a king named bhadra-shreNya was ruling kAshi, usurping it from the ancestors of divodasa... this bhadra-shreNya is from yadu dynasty and he is the son of king mahiSmanta.... vanquishing that king bhadra-shreNya and all his hundred sons who are famed as great archers, divodasa regained kAshi from him just by his own might, leaving off the last son of that king, called durdama, because he was too young to be eradicated at that time...  later, the calamity on kAshi has befallen...

janamejaya uvAcha – janamejaya inquired

vArANasIM nikumbhaH tu kim arthaM shaptavAn prabhuH |
nikumbhakaH cha dharmAtmA siddhi-kSetraM shashApa yaH || 1-29-35

“What for nikumbha cursed the city of kAshi...  being a righteous entity how could nikumbha curse a holy place like kAshi...

siddhi-kSetraM= moksha kSetraM= holy place.

vaishaMpAyana uvAcha – vaishampAyana replied

divodAsaH tu rAjarShiH nagarIM prApya pArthivaH |
vasati sma mahAtejAH sphItAyAM tu narAdhipaH || 1-29-36
etasmin eva kAle tu kR^ita-dAro maheshvaraH |
devyAH sa priya kAmaH tu nyavasat shvashura antike || 1-29-37

At the time when the kingly sage divodasa was ruling from the most affluent city kAshi, god shiva marrying goddess pArvati remained in his father-in-law’s house, namely near at Himalayas, for sometime, just to please his new bride...

deva Aj~nayA pArShadA ye tu adhi-rUpAH tapodhanAH |
pUrva uktaiH upadeshaiH cha toShayanti sma pArvatIm || 1-29-38
hR^iShyate vai mahAdevI menA naiva prahR^iShyati |
jugupsati asakR^ittAM vai devIM devaM tathaiva sA || 1-29-39

The spiritual coterie of god shiva, namely pramatha gaNa-s, has also stayed back with shiva according to the order of shiva... the highly spiritual members of this coterie have a shiva-like appearance – shankara sArUpya tejam – and they are hitherto indoctrinated with shiva svarUpa tattvam – the essence of shiva... so, they have nothing else to do than to sing, praise, and dance for / along with shiva... as such, they continued their good old habit even in the house of shiva’s father-in-law and started to sing, dance and praise, of course, now adding the name of shivA to shiva... though the newly weds shivA and shiva are highly delighted with these pageantries, lady mena-devi, the mother of pArvati and the wife of himavAn, felt irritated to see roadside shows regularly performed in her house, and reviled pArvati in this way...

sa pArShadaH tu anAchAraH tava bhartA maheshvaraH |
daridraH sarvada eva asau shIlaM tasya na vartate || 1-29-40

“Your husband, maheshvara, is an eternalized good-for-nothing fellow... he and his gang - all are with outré behaviour, and none can bring him around to conduct himself with some etiquette...”

mAtrA tatha ukta avaradA strI-svabhAvAt cha chukrudhe |
smitaM kR^itvA cha varadA bhava pArshvam atha Agamat || 1-29-41
vivarNa vadanA devI mahAdevam abhAShata |
na iha vatsyAmi ahaM deva naya mAM svaM niketanam || 1-29-42

When her mother insinuated shiva in this way, pArvati felt insulted for sullying shiva... pArvati recollected what has happened to her father daksha, who was her father in her earlier incarnation, and who similarly disparaged shiva then...  fearing the same might happen to her present mother, lady mena-devi also, if she continued to belittle shiva in this way, pArvati suppressed her resentment with a smile and approached shiva, and standing at his side she spoke to him, “I cannot stay here anymore, my lord, please take me to your house...” – which is impalpable...

avarda= avarAn= niichaan= talking lowly.

tathA kartuM mahAdevaH sarva lokAn avaikShata |
vAsArthaM rochayAmAsa pR^ithivyAM kurunandana || 1-29-43
vArANasI mahAtejAH siddhi-kSetraM maheshvaraH |
divodAsena tAM j~nAtvA niviShTAM nagarIM bhavaH || 1-20-44

As with any other newly-wed who starts searching for at least a single room tenement to start his wedded life, this houseless god shiva too started searching for an accommodation in all the worlds, and finally settled upon earth to start with... to make the dreams of her new bride to come true, and even with a bent for the prospective holy place kAshi, which is now under the governance of divodasa, shiva preferred it among all places on earth...

pArshve tiShThantam AhUya nikumbham idam abravIt |
gaNeshvara purIM gatvA shUnyAM vArANasIM kuru || 1-29-45
mR^iduna eva abhyupAyena hi ativIryaH sa pArthivaH |

Then summoning one from his coterie called nikumbha, who is readily available at his side, shiva spoke this to him, “oh, lord of hosts, you may now proceed to kAshi and make it devoid of people... but do it cautiously and gently, because the ruler of kAshi, namely divodasa, is a mightiest king...

tato gatvA nikumbhaH tu pUrIM vArANasIM tadA || 1-29-46
svapne nidarshayAmAsa kaNDukaM nAma nApitam |
shreyaH te ahaM kariShyAmi sthAnaM me rochaya anagha || 1-29-47
mat rUpAM pratimAM kR^itvA nagari ante tathaiva cha |

Accordingly nikumbha went to kAshi and revealed himself to a barber named kaNDuka in his dream saying, “oh, faultless one, “I will do some favour to you, if you could show me some place to stay... if agreed, make a statue of my features and install it at the entrance to this city...”

tataH svapne yathoddiShTaM sarvaM kAritavAn nR^ipa || 1-29-48
purI dvAre tu vij~nApya rAjAnaM cha yathAvidhi |
pUjAM tu mahatIM tasya nityam eva prayojayat || 1-29-49
gandhaiH cha dhUpa mAlyaiH cha prokShaNIyaiH tathaiva cha |
anna pAna prayogaiH cha ati adbhutam iva abhavat| || 1-29-50

On the next day morning, that barber went to the king divodasa and reported about his dream and nikumbha’s assurance, seeking the help of the king... the king readily agreed for the negligible request and arranged for a sculpture of nikumbha, its installation at the entrance of city, and for its worship in a grand and uninterrupted way with sandal paste, incense, garlands, anointment, and with offertories of food and drinkables... and when all these are put together, it has become a rare spectacle...  

evaM saMpUjyate tatra nityam eva gaNeshvaraH |
tato vara-sahasraM tu nAgarANAM prayachChati |
putrAn hiraNyam AyuH cha sarvAn kAmAn tathaiva cha || 1-29-51

That god nikumbha, when being worshipped like this, had gone on bestowing thousands of boons to whoever asked for them, or whatever has been asked, like sons, gold, longevity, or whatever desired...

rAj~naH tu mahiShI shreShThA su-yashA nAma vishrutA |
putra artham AgatA devI sAdhvI rAj~nA prachoditA || 1-29-52
pUjAM tu vipulAM kR^itvA devI putram ayAchata |
punaH punaH atha Agamya bahushaH putra kAraNAt || 1-29-53

Lady su-yasha, the immaculate queen consort of king divodasa, also sought to worship this idol, and the king readily encouraged her, because they too are issueless... coming to the place where the idol is installed she performed grand worships seeking a son, but of no use... she has come again and again and performed worships, again of no use... somehow, that god has not shown grace upon her even after prolonged worshipping, and she remained issueless...

na prayachChati putraM hi nikuMbhaH kAraNena hi |
rAjA tu yadi naH kupyet kAryasiddhiH tato bhavet || 1-29-54

Nikumbha, the god in the idol, avoided giving the king any progeny on certain ground and he said to himself, “This king should cut up rough with us... then only our mission is feasible... let him loose temper first...”

atha dIrgheNa kAlena krodho rAjAnam Avishat |
bhUta eSha mahAn dvAri nAgarANAM prayachChati || 1-29-55
prIto varAn vai shatasho mama kiM na prayachChati |
mAmakaiH pUjyate nityaM nagaryA me sadaiva hi || 1-29-56
vij~nApito mayA atyarthaM devyA me putra kAraNAt |
na dadAti cha putraM me kR^itaghnaH kena hetunA || 1-29-57
tato na arhati satkAraM mat sakAshAt visheShataH |
tasmAt tu nAshayiShyAmi sthAnam asya durAtmanaH || 1-29-58

After some time the king is enraged and thought, “This all-bestowing demigod at the gateway of this city is bestowing whatever the city dwellers are asking, that too, scores and scores of boons... residing in my own city, receiving worship from my own subjects, yet he does not show his grace on me, but why... this poor lady, my queen, is persistently offering worships praying just for a son, all unavailingly... but, why there is no fair exchange with him... well... if there is no synergism between him and us, it will be inapt on our part to invest him there any further, especially right in the eyeshot vicinage of mine... it is better I pull down his establishment so that that malefactor exiles himself...

evaM sa tu vinishchitya durAtmA rAja-kilbiShI |
sthAnaM gaNapateH tasya nAshayAmAsa durmatiH || 1-29-59

Deciding in this way that king egotistical of his kingship brought down the temple establishment of that demigod with certain disesteem...

bhagnam AyatanaM dR^iShTvA rAjAnam ashapat prabhuH |
yasmAt an-aparAdhasya tvayA sthAnaM vinAshitam |
purya kasmAt iyaM shUnyA tava nUnaM bhaviShyati || 1-29-60

On seeing the razed temple that demigod nikumbha issued a curse to king divodasa saying, “As you have turned out a well-intentioned god of house and home, let your city-dwellers also become so... let people forsake this city kAshi making it a godforsaken megalopolis, of course, for a thousand years to come...”   

tataH tena tu shApena shUnyA vArANasI tadA |
shaptvA purIM nikuMbhastu mahAdevam atha Agamat || 1-29-61
akasmAt tu purI sA tu vidrutA sarvato disham |

Having cursed the city nikimbha has returned to god shiva, but whole of city kAshi suddenly started to flee in all directions, so to speak....

tasyAM puryAM tato devo nirmame padam AtmanaH || 1-29-62

In such a desolated city god shiva then established his hospice...

ramate tatra vai devo ramamANo gireH sutAm |
na ratiM tatra vai devI labhate gR^iha-vismayAt |
vasAmi atra na puryAM tu devI devam atha abravIt || 1-29-63

While shivA and shiva are staying in kAshi, in order to please her with the change of residence from that of her mother’s house, pArvati again felt that place dry-as-dust... she again complained to shiva, “I cannot stay here also, my lord, take me somewhere else...” this she complained with a - gR^iha-vismayAt – house; from astonishment; say, from an astonishment whether that place called kAshi is any house with some population, or whether it is a crematorium happily deprived of people...

Here nIlakaNTha derives some advaita import of this conversation.

That being the case, another way of reading is like this, by some parsing and using ellipses. This dialog of pArvati is an indirect goading to shiva. She is nagging at him in all her motherly affection, just to populate kAshi immediately, keeping the trifling curse at bay. She is saying to her husband:

”You say it is an a+vi+mukta kshetram= a place where ineligible will also get mukti – salvation. But here, whom do you mukti-fy? Walls, pillars and slabs, or what... If some grahIta, donee is there, then alone you can become dAta, a donor... None is available here excepting you and your bhajan-kIratan party, who are all beyond sadyo mukti, krama mukti or whatever... as such, first bring back my children home, make this city livable for them, then you can earbash me with your ununderstandable philosophies... a house minus our own people is not a house, nor you are a householder, not I am a housewife... if not, I will leave for my mother’s place, which is my regular slogan...”

Then shiva said to her: “Why do you overlook the sub-clause in the curse, ‘a thousand year desolation...’ now I will square it with this city...  don’t bother...”

Meanwhile the thousand year stipulation as part of curse on kAshi is over and kAshi is repopulated, to which population this so-called mother gives food – hence called anna-pUrNa. Not that she just throws leftovers, or two morsels into the bowls of beggars, but she makes them to live, an enlivener – anna is no doubt is food, but here figuratively it is anna+gata+prANi= food oriented living beings, whom she makes to live comfortably. Again, shiva is called here vishva-nAtha; where vishva does not always mean cosmos; it is people; people’s lord.

In effect, this going and coming of people from and to kAshi is symbolic to the pilgrims who also come and go to and from kAshi. Hence, the saying: ‘visit kAshi, at least, once in lifetime...’

deva uvAcha –god shiva said

na ahaM veshmani vatsyAmi avimuktaM hi me gR^iham |
na ahaM tatra gamiShyAmi gachCha devi gR^ihaM prati || 1-29-64
hasan uvAcha bhagavAn tryambakaH tripurAntakaH |
tasmAt tat avimuktaM hi proktaM devena vai svayam || 1-29-65
evaM vArANasI shaptA avimuktaM cha kIrtitam || 1-29-66

“I cannot be quartered in this house or that, as I keep going only with avimukta, the enfranchised souls, and this kAshi is a place where souls become so... hence, the question of my moving to somewhere else does not arise, yet, you may proceed on your own, if you so wish...” so said god shiva smilingly to pArvati. Therefore kAshi became a cardinal place for those who seek to become avimukta-AtmA-s, enfranchised souls, as the god shiva personally denominated kAshi as a place to disembark souls on other shore... in this way, kAshi is imprecated, redeemed, resuscitated as a holiest place...

yasmin vasati vai devaH sarva deva namaskR^itaH |
yugeShu triShu dharmAtmA saha devyA maheshvaraH ||1-29-67
antardhAnaM kalau yAti tat puraM hi mahAtmanaH |
antarhite pure tasmin purI sA vasate punaH |
evaM vArANasI shaptA niveshaM punar AgatA || 1-29-68

This holy couple, shivA-shiva, will be available in that city in their palpable forms in three cyclic eras, namely kRita, treta, and dwApa yuga-s; when kali era arrives their forms will become impalpable, though their presence is still there...” this is how kAshi is depopulated and repopulated...” thus vaishampAyana is continuing his narration to janamejaya.

bhadrashreNyasya putro vai durdamo nAma vishrutaH |
divodAsena bAla iti ghR^iNayA sa vivarjitaH || 1-29-69

Prior to this episode of kAshi’s depopulation /repopulation, divodasa regained kAshi from its usurper named king bhadrashreNya, by eliminating him and all of his sons, excepting the last one, named durdama, showing usual clemency towards the young, at that time...

haihayasya tu dAyAdyaM kR^itavAn vai mahIpatiH |
Ajahre pitR^i-dAyAdyaM divodAsa hR^itaM balAt || 1-29-70
bhadrashreNyasya putreNa durdamena mahAtmanA |
vairasya antaM mahArAja kShatriyeNa vidhitsatA || 1-29-71

This boy durdama has come of age in the meanwhile, forged alliance with haihaya-s, and recaptured kAshi kingdom that had been recaptured by divodasa from his father bhadrashreNya, which bhadrashreNya had earlier captured from the ancestors of divodasa... thus durdama did his part in the long drawn feud between kAshi and other empires, and reclaimed kAshi as a patrimony... durdama, the son of bhadrashreNya, has imposed this invasion on kAshi as retaliation of a true kshatriya...

Here the words - vairasya antaM - have become undecipherable because it is unclear whether it is an end to enmity, or, at the end of enmity. Please see endnote for some details.

divodAsAt dR^iShadvatyAM vIro jaj~ne pratardanaH |
tena putreNa bAlena prahR^itaM tasya vai punaH || 1-29-72

After sometime queen dR^iShadvati delivered a valiant son of divbodasa, named prince pratardana, who even before attaining an age of combatant, but just by his might won kAshi back from durdama...

pratardanasya putrau dvau vatsa bhArgau babhUvatuH |
vatsa-putro hi alarkaH tu sannatiH tasya cha AtmajaH || 1-29-73
alarkaH kAshi-rAjaH tu brahmaNyaH satya-sa~NgaraH |
alarkaM prati rAjarShiM shloko gItaH purAtanaiH || 1-29-74
ShaShTi varSha sahasrANi ShaShTiM varSha shatAni cha |
yuvA rUpeNa saMpanna AsIt kAshi kula udvahaH || 1-29-75

King pratardana’s sons are two, namely vatsa and bharga; vatsa’s son is alarka, and alarka’s son is sannati... king alarka is famed as kingly sage who reverenced scholars and who is bothered only for truth, for which qualities ancients have rendered lauds and eulogies in his respect... this enricher of kAshi dynasties, king alarka, ruled kAshi kingdom for six-thousand-six-hundred years retaining his youthful invigoration...

lopAmudrA prasAdena parama AyuH avApa saH |
tasya AsIt sumahat rAjyaM rUpa yauvana shAlinaH |
shApasya ante mahAbAhuH hatvA kShemaka rAkShasam || 1-29-76
ramyAM niveshayAmAsa purIM vArANasIM punaH |

By the grace of most esteemed lady lopa-mudra, the sagely wife of sage agastya, this king alarka whose mien is pleasant and bounce youthful, got such longevity... even though the city kAshi got rid of her curse of depopulation, there used to be a menace of a demon named kshemaka in that city, whereby that city used to look somewhat ungratified; this king alarka got put an end to that demon kshemaka and brought back the joy of that city...

sannateH api dAyAdaH sunItho nAma dhArmikaH || 1-29-77
sunIthasya tu dAyAdaH kShemyo nAma mahAyashAH |
kShemyasya ketumAn putraH suketuH tasya cha AtmajaH || 1-29-78
suketoH tanayaH chApi dharmaketuH iti smR^itaH |
dharmaketoH tu dAyAdaH satyaketuH mahArathaH || 1-29-79
satyaketu sutaH chApi vibhuH nAma prajeshvaraH |
AnartaH tu vibhoH putraH sukumAraH tu tat sutaH || 1-29-80
sukumArasya putraH tu dhR^iShTaketuH sudhArmikaH |
dhR^iShTaketoH tu dAyAdo veNuhotraH prajeshvaraH || 1-29-81
veNuhotra sutaH chApi bhargo nAma prajeshvaraH |

King sannati is the son of that king alarka; the line of princes descending from him are: sannati --> sunItha --> kShemya --> ketumAn --> su-ketu --> dharma-ketu --> satyaketu --> vibhu --> Anarta --> sukumAra --> dhR^iShTa-ketu --> veNuhotra --> bharga...

vatsasya vatsa-bhUmiH tu bhR^igu-bhUmiH tu bhArgavAt || 1-29-82
ete tu a~NgirasaH putrA jAtA vaMshe.atha bhArgave |
brAhmaNAH kShatriyA vaishyAH tayoH putrAH sahasrashaH |

King pratardana’s sons are two, namely vatsa and bharga; those that have come forth from this bharga pursued the course enjoined only to brAhmaNa-s have become bhArgavA-s, rather brAhmaNa-s; while thousands of progeny of vatsa, the other son of alarka have not only become kshatriya-s, but also of brAhmaNa-s, vaishya-s etc, owing to intermixed marriages under same gotrasagotrIka vivAha - and of course, owing to the chosen lifestyles...

Here also a difficult reading is envisaged and professors like Wilson and Muir et al have recorded a lot. C.f. endnote.

nIlakaNTha says that the text is telling about – putra antaram Aha - the difference between the progeny of two sons of alarka, namely vatsa and bharga.

vatsasya= alarka-pituH; putra antaram Aha = text says the difference between two progenies; vatsabhumiH iti = bhArgavat=  vatsa-bhrAtuH = from bharga, or bhArgava, or brAhmaNa, who is the brother of vatsa; from that bharga, the son of alarka, some hosts of progeny pursuing brAhmaNa tradition has come forth called as bhArgava-s.

How kshatriya-s, taking birth in royal families, are termed as bhArgava-s?  

Why not? angirasaH - galavasya angirasatvAt – as to how brAhmaNa-s derived from gAlava of angirasa gotra are denominated as angIrasA-s; and - visvamitrasya bhargavatvat - as to how vishvAmitra retains brahmaNahood by virtue of his personal choice, and by his matrilineal descant from a brAhmaNa – bhArgave; this bharga who is alarkasya pituH, vatsasya bhrAta, and his progeny are denominated as bhArgava-s, brAhmaNa-s..

The word ‘tvAt’ = ‘suffix - hood’ as in angirasatvAt, bhArgavatvAt says it is brAhamaNatvam – brAhmaNa-hood. As such, there are no two more sons called vatsa-bhUmi, bhR^igu-bhUmi; because bhUmi here means – that which issues forth, fielded by, kshetram as in kshetra-bIja nyAya.

nk concludes – tayoH vatsa-bhUmi, bhR^igu-bhUmyoH kAshayaH, meaning – tayoH = with them - those that are spawned by vatsa and bharga, the two sons of alarka, the dynasties of kAshi are built up. kAshayaH = kAshii vaMshyaaH.

J. Muir -- Origin and history of the people of India, wrt above verses 1-29-82 / 83:

"Wilson, p. 409, note 16, where a commentator (on the Brahma Purana, or the Hari- vams'a) is quoted, who says that in the passage from these works " another son of Vatsa, the father of Alarka, is specified, viz., Vatsabhumi ; while Bhargava is the brother of Vatsa ; and that (the persons referred to were) Angirases because Galava belonged to that family, and (were born in the family) of Bhrigu,

because Visvamitra belonged to it "


vatsasya alarka-pituh putra antaram aha | Vatsabhumir iti | bhargavad vatsa-bhratuh | angiraso galavasya angirasatvat bhaaargave  visvamitrasya bliargavatvaf |


The Vishnu Purana, iv. 8, 6, says that Vatsa was one of the names of Pratardana, son of Divodasa, a descendant of Kas'a, and a remote ancestor of Bhargabhumi. See however Professor Wilson's note 13, p. 408. It is possible that the resemblance of the word Bharga to Bhargava may have occasioned the descendants of the former to be connected with the family of Bhrigu.

Please see endnote.

iti ete kAshayaH proktA nahuShasya nibodha me || 1-29-83

This is abolut the dynasties of kAshi kingdom, now listen about the legend of nahuSha from me...


iti shrImahAbhArate khileShu harivaMshe harivaMshaparvaNi anenasovaMshaH
- yadvA - divodAsa charitam nAma ekonatriMsho.adhyAyaH

Thus, this is the twenty-ninth chapter of first canto called harivamsha-parva, in harivamsha-purANa, the sequel of mahAbhArata, narrating the legend of divodAsa, the king of kAshi.



Some footnotes from viShNu purANa, Ch VIII, page 406 – online version, of HH Wilson, are reproduced here for quick reference:--


 Some rather curious legends are connected with this prince in the Váyu and Bráhma Puránas, and Hari Vanśa, and especially in the Káśí Khanda of the Skánda Purána. According to these authorities, Śiva and Párvatí, desirous of occupying Káśí, which Divodása possessed, sent Nikumbha, one of the Ganas of the former, to lead the prince to the adoption of Buddhist doctrines; in consequence of which he was expelled from the sacred city, and, according to the Váyu, founded another on the banks of the Gomatí. We have, however, also some singular, though obscure intimations of some of the political events of this and the succeeding reign. The passage of the Váyu is, 'The king Divodása, having slain the hundred sons of Bhadraśrenya, took possession of his kingdom, which was conquered by that hero. The son of Bhadraśrenya, celebrated by the name of Durdama, was spared by Divodása, as being an infant. Pratarddana was the son of Divodása by Drishadvatí; and by that great prince, desirous of destroying all enmity, (was recovered) that (territory) which had been seized by that young boy (Durdama).' This is not very explicit, and something is wanted to complete the sense. The Bráhma P. and Hari V. tell the story twice over, chiefly in the words of the Váyu, but with some additions. In ch. 29. we have, first, the first three lines of the above extract; then comes the story of Benares being deserted; we then have the two next lines; then follow,

'That prince (Durdama) invading his patrimonial possessions, the territory which Divodása had seized by force was recovered by the gallant son of Bhadhraśrenya, Durddama, a warrior desirous, mighty king, to effect the destruction of his foes.'

Here the victory is ascribed to Durddama, in opposition to what appears to be the sense of the Váyu, and what is undoubtedly that of our text, which says that he was called Pratarddana from destroying the race of Bhadraśrenya, and Śatrujit from vanquishing all his foes.

By vairasya anta, [cf verse 1-29-71 above; it is vairasyAntam]  'the end of hostility or enmity,' is obviously not to be understood here, as M. Langlois has intimated, a friendly pacification, but the end or destruction of all enemies. [What MAL said is: S'étant emparé de l'héritage d'Hêhaya, ce prince céda les domaines que Divodâsa lui avait enlevés, vulant, Kchatriya généreux, mettre fin à tutes les inimitiés.]

In the 32d chapter of the Hari Vanśa we have precisely the same lines, slightly varied as to their order; but they are preceded by this verse; 'The city (that on the Gomati), before the existence of Benares, of Bhadraśrenya, a pious prince of the Yadu race: This verse is not in the Bráhma P. After giving the rest of the above quotation, except the last line, the passage proceeds, 'The king called Ashtaratha was the son of Bhímaratha; and by him, great king, a warrior desirous of destroying his foes was (the country) recovered, the children (of Durdama) being infants.' According to the same authority, we are here to understand Bhímaratha and Ashtaratha as epithets of Divodása and Pratarddana. From these scanty and ill-digested notices it appears, that Divodása, on being expelled from Benares, took some city and district on the Gomati from the family of Bhadraśrenya; that Durdama recovered the country, and that Pratarddana again conquered it from his descendants. The alternation concerned apparently only bordering districts, for the princes of Máhíshmati and of Káśí continue, in both an earlier and a later series, in undisturbed possession of their capitals and their power.


`Our text is clear enough, and so is the Bhágavata, but the Váyu, Bráhma, and Hari V. contain additions of rather doubtful import. The former has, 'The son of Venuhotra was the celebrated Gárgya; Gargabhúmi was the son of Gárgya; and Vatsa, of the wise Vatsa: virtuous Brahmans and Kshatriyas were the sons of these two.' By the second Vatsa is perhaps meant Vatsabhúmi; and the purport of the passage is, that Gárgya (or possibly rather Bharga, one of the sons of Pratarddana) and Vatsa were the founders of two races (Bhúmi, 'earth,' implying 'source' or founder', who were Kshatriyas by birth, and Brahmans by profession. The Bráhma and Hari V., apparently misunderstanding this text, have increased the perplexity.

According to them, the son of Venuhotra was Bharga; Vatsabhúmi was the son of Vatsa; and Bhargabhúmi (Bhrigubhúmi, Bráhma) was from Bhárgava. 'These sons of Angiras were born in the family of Bhrigu, thousands of great might, Brahmans, Kshatriyas and Vaiśyas.' The commentator has, 'Another son of Vatsa, the father of Alarka, is described, Vatsabhúmi, &c. From Bhárgava, the brother of Vatsa. (They were) Angirasas from Gálava belonging to that family, (and were born) in the family of Bhrigu from the descent of Viśwámitra.'

The interpretation [of nIlakaNtha] is not very clear, but it authorizes the notion above expressed, that Vatsa and Bharga, the sons of Pratarddana, are the founders of two races of Kshatriya-Brahmans.


Several varieties occur, in the series that follows, as the comparative lists will best shew:


































































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