The Vamana Purana, Part 11
BY: SUN STAFF
Gita-govinda Mural Painting
Dec 24, CANADA (SUN) A serial exploration of the Vamana Purana by Srila Vedya-vyasa, excerpted and categorized into various subject areas.
Sage Mankanak Eulogises Shiva
"Sage Mankanak was the Manasputra of Kashyap. He had seven sons, who were famously known as Marud Ganas. They are the one who hold all the movable and immovable objects of this world.
Once, sage Mankanak injured his finger by the sharp edge of Kusha grass while he was trying to pluck them for his religious rites. But he was quite surprised when he found vegetative juice (Shaak Rasa) oozing out from the wound instead of blood. He thought that perhaps his blood had transformed into vegetative juice by the virtue of his penance.
This abnormal event made him arrogant and he started dancing in joy as a result of which the whole world started to swerve. Lord Brahma became puzzled by this sudden development. He went to Lord Shiva and requested him to stop Mankanak from dancing so that the universe became steady.
Lord Shiva went to sage Mankanak and said- "O supreme sage! Being a hermit, you are supposed to have control over your emotions. May I know the reason of your extreme joy, which makes you dance." Mankanak told him that his penance had given him great power due to which vegetative juice was oozing out from the wound instead of blood and this was the reason for his extreme joy and happiness. "That is why I am dancing", said Mankanak.
But Lord Shiva was not amused and wanted to teach him a lesson. He hit the thumb with the nail of his finger as a result of which, ashes poured out from the wound. Mankanak was surprised by this. Being ashamed, he said- "I know, you are none other than Lord Shiva because nobody else can perform this amazing feat. I am your great devotee. You are the one on whom, deities like Brahma and Vishnu are dependent. I need your blessings so that the virtues of my penance remain intact." Lord Shiva blessed him and promised to dwell in his hermitage forever."
Sages Take Lord Shiva's Refuge
"Ashamed, the sages requested Lord Brahma to tell them the way to pacify Lord Shiva. Lord Brahma assured them that they would be forgiven if they took Lord Shiva's refuge. Lord Brahma went to Kailash Parvat accompanied by all the sages. After reaching there, he eulogised Lord Shiva with deep devotion. The sages also worshipped Lord Shiva.
Lord Shiva was satisfied by their eulogy and devotion. He instructed the sages to establish the severed Linga at Saanihitya Sarovar. "By doing this, you would have all your desires fulfilled. The Linga would become famous by the name of Sthanu - the whole world. A devotee who pays a visit to this sacred place of pilgrimage would become liberated from all his sins", said Lord Shiva.
The sages returned to the place of Lord Shiva's fallen Linga. They tried their best to lift it but were unsuccessful in their attempt. They became worried and went to Lord Brahma for help. Lord Brahma told them- "Since Shiva's Linga had fallen on his own will, hence nobody except him can lift that Linga." All of them went back to Kailash Parvat but Lord Shiva was nowhere to be found.
Lord Brahma went into a state of deep meditation and sighted Lord Shiva in the guise of an elephant. When Brahma and the deities proceeded on their way, they found a goddess with a kamandalu in hand and offered them Amrit. After being refreshed, the sages asked whether she knew of Lord Shiva's whereabouts. She told them that Lord Shiva was presently living in the middle of Saanihitya Sarovar.
After reaching the reservoir, they found Lord Shiva in the guise of an elephant. They requested him to help them, establish his Linga at the desired place. Lord Shiva agreed. All of them then went to the site of Lord Shiva's fallen Linga. He lifted it with his trunk and established it towards the west of Saanihitya Sarovar. The sages were satisfied and expressed their gratitude to Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva, pleased by their eulogy and devotion, decided to make the Linga as his abode."