Essence of Brahmanda Purana


Essence Of
Brahmanda Purana


3    Maha Pralaya , Vishnu as Yajna Varaha and Process of Creation by Brahma

To start with, Pradhana Purusha manifested the two characteristics of  Satwa Guna, one to sustain the Universe and another to dissolve it; then followed the Rajo Guna coming to play an equal role:

Shasvataah Paramaa Guhyaah Sarvatmaan Shariranah,

Satwam Vishnu Rajo Brahma Tamo Rudrah Prajapatih/

Yeta yeva Trayoloka Yeta yeva Trayo Gunaah,

Yeta yeva Trayo Veda Yeta yeva Trayognaha/

Parasparaanvayaa hyotey Parasparanuvrataah,

Parasparena vartintey prerayanti parasparam/

(The Trinities are Everlasing and mysterious; their Physiques and Souls are manifested; Satwa Guna is represented by Vishnu, Rajo Guna by Brahma and Tamo Guna by Rudra. – They alone are the Three Lokas, Three Gunas, Three Vedas and Three Agnis viz. Ahavaniya, Garhapatya and Dakshina. These Entities have mutual inter-association, mutual attachment, mutual help, mutual union and mutual inter-dependence). Thus the Self-born Pradhana Purusha has Three Swarupas as Brahma, Vishnu and Maheswara. Some times as Brahma he creates the Lokas, some times as Vishnu he sustains and some other times as Rudra he demolishes.

Brahma kamala patraahshah Kaalo jaatyanjanaprabhah,

Purushah Pundareekaaksho Rupena Paramaatmanah/

Ekadhaa sa Dwidhaa chaiva Tridhaacha Bahudhaa Punah,

Yogeshwara shariraani karoti vikarochita/

Naanaakruti kriyaarupaamaashrayanti Swaleelaya,

Tridhaa yadurtatey Lokey tasmaatriguna muchyatey/

(Paramatma displays some times as Brahma with lotus petal like eyes, Kaala Deva Rudra has the sparkle of his eyes always and Vishnu has lotus eyes. Like wise Paramatma has a single Rupa, some times as  two, or three or innumerable; the Supreme Lord makes physical variations of sizes, shapes, activities, complexions and features; it is a pastime for Bhavan and came to be called a Trigunatmika.

At the Kalpantara Pralaya or the Great Extermination of the Universe,  the whole World got submerged in deep water  as ‘Ekarnava’ or a single sheet of Water and the ‘Sthaavara Jangamaas’ or the Mobile and Immobile Beings were all submerged, then Para Brahma called Narayana, who was of ‘Sahasraaksha, Sahasrapaat, Sahasra Shirsha’ or of thousand eyes, feet and heads, was resting on the huge surface of water:

Apo Naara iti proktaa Apo vai Nara Sunavah,

Ayanam tasya taah proktaastena Narayanah smritah/

( ‘Apah’ denotes ‘Nara’ or water;  ‘Naaraas’ or the children or waves of ‘Nara’; and Nara is a Being or Entity ; Nara plus Ayana is Narayana as he who rests on Samsara or  water) . Narayana sought to locate Prithvi (Earth) deep down in water and assumed Varaahaavatara or the Incarnation of a Huge Boar like a mountain with ten yojanas of girth and hundred yojanas of height (one Yojana being 12 km), with a body of cloud-like complexion and extreme radiance of many Lightnings, Fire and Sun; making thunderous and high-pitched sounds and having broad shoulders, sharp fangs, white teeth and pointed nails. The YajnaVaraha is described as follows:

Diksha Samaapteeshtim damshtrtah kratu danto Juhuumukhah,

Agni jihvo darbha romaa Brahma seersho Mahatapaah/

Veda skandho havirgandhirhavyakavyaadi vegavaan,

Praagvamsha kaayo Dyutimaan naanaa Dikshaabhiranvitah/

Dakshinaa hridayo Yogi Shraddhaa satwa -mayo Vibhuh,

Upaakarma ruchischaiva pravagyaavarta bhushanah/

Naanaachhandogati patho guhyopanishadaasanah,

Maayaapatnisahaayo vai Giri shringamivocchrayah/

Aho raatrekshana dharo Vedanga shriti bhushanah,

Aajya gandhah struvastundah Samaghosa swano Mahaan/

Satyadharma  mayah Shrimaan Karma vikrama saskrutah,

Prayaschitta nakho ghorah Pashujaanurmahaamakhah/

Udgaadaantro Homa Lingah Phala beeja mahoushadheeh,

Vaadyantaraatmasatrasya naasmikaasomashonitah/

( The Yagna Varaha took up the diksha or Initiation of the Kratu or the Sacifice with his ‘damshtras’ or curved fangs and teeth holding the ‘Juhu’or the crescent shaped wooden ladle with which to make the offerings of ghee; Agni was his tongue to lap up the Sacrifice; Darbha grasses were the Varaha’s hairs; Brahma one of the Chief of ‘Ritviks’ or the Brahmanas performing the Sacrifice was comparable to Varaha Murti’s Head; Vedaas were his shoulders; his body-aroma was his ‘havis’ or the Sacrificial Offering; the Havya and Kavya or the offerings to Devas and Pitru Devas respectively consituted his body-speedwith which the Sacrificial Offerings were made; the ‘Praagvamsha’ or the East-bound Chamber in which the guests at the Sacrifice were seated was Varaha’s kaaya or the spacious physique; He was highly radiant and capable of accepting several Dikshas like the one being performed; He was the Master of Yoga full of Shraddha and Satwa or Sincerity and Resolve; he had Upakarma or extra study of Vedas and an expert in ‘Pragvargya’ or the Introductory  Ceremony to  the long-duration Soma Sacrifice; his ‘Avarta Bhushana’ or the ornamental and circular curls of the boar chest; the representation of various ‘Chaandas’ or Poetic Meters as his pathway; Upanishads as his seat; his able asistance is Maya as his spouse; his height was that  of a mountain peak; his eyes representing Sun and moon and day and night; Vedangas and Shritis were his ear-ornaments; his body smell was that of ‘Ajya’ or the Ghee offering; Sruva or the sacrificial ladle is like his snout or muzzle; his voice was like the high pitch of the chanting of Saama Veda hymns; ‘Udgata’ or the elongated Sama Veda hymn was like his entrail or intestines; homa was his Linga or Symbol; fruits and seeds are his testicles; the altar of sacrifice was his heart; He was an Epitome of Satya Dharma and Soma Rasa was his own blood.) Thus Yajna Varaha Deva,  as Nasika Soma sonita, dived deep into waters and lifted up Earth, allocated waters into Oceans and Rivers on Earth, materialised Mountains to stabilise the waters thus allocated, broadly created Sapta Dwipas on Earth, materialised  Bhurbhuva -ssuraadi Lokas and their inhabitants on the same pattern as in the previous Kalpas before the Great Pralaya.

Brahma then meditated for long before taking up Srishti and Avidya or Ignorance came to emerge in Five Forms viz.

Tamo Moho Maha Mohastaamisrodhyandha Sanjnitah/  

(The five Knots of Avidya were Tamas, Moha, Maha Moha, Tamisra and Andha Misra viz. Darkness, Delusion, Great Delusion, Pitch Darkness and Blind Darkness)

Brahma Deva  desired to intitiate Creation and meditated; as there was darkness all around, he made the First‘Abhavika Srishti’ of aimless and causual nature and the result was of  purposeless vegetation around mountains and trees; the thought of the Second ‘Tiryaksrota’ or a Zig-zag flow (srota is a flow and tiryak is wavery) flashed in his mind and the persons produced were ignorant and egoistic. Brahma then meditated further and the result was of ‘Satvika’ or ‘Urthwa Srota Srishti’, the Third in the Series of Creation; the Superior and Divine Beings  thus created were highly virtuous, ever-happy, truthful and full of Satva Guna and they were Devas, whose Chief Mentor was Brahma himself. This Srishti was no doubt very satisfactory and Brahma was contented but he felt that there should also be the Fourth Creation of an ‘Arvaak (Abhimuka) Srotas’ titled ‘Sadhaka Sarga’ with a mix of Satvika and Rajasika nature with  Tamasika features as well; the end products were Siddhas, Gandharva-like Beings and Manushyas. The Fifth Creation is titled Anugraha (Blessings) Sarga comprising four divisions viz. Viparyaya (Loss of Awareness),  Shakti (Strength), Siddha (Accomplishment) and Mukhya (Principal); in other words  Persons in these categories have little consciouness to begin with , gain strength, reach the Goal and then join the blessed category but they all are in the cycle of births and deaths. The Sixth Category related to the Bhutaadi Srishti of Creatures and Elements.

Put it differently: Para Brahma’s first Creation was that of ‘Mahat’or The Primary Principle; the Second was that of Tanmatras called Bhuta Sarga; the Third was Vaikarika Creation or Aindria Srishti relevant to Sense Organs as Prakruta creations evolved by full consciousness and fore-knowledge; the Fourth Category was Mukhya Sarga related to the Creation of Immobiles; the Fifth was of Tiryak Srota of animals and lower species; the Sixth  was Urthva Srota of Divine nature viz. Devatas; the Seventh  was of Arvak Srota or Sadhakas including Manushyas; and the Eighth was of Anugraha Sarga as per the four classifications afore-mentioned. The Ninth category was of Kaumara Sarga of the Manasa Putras of Brahma viz. Sanaka, Sanandana, Sanaatana and Sanat Kumaras of extreme brilliance but were ‘Viraktaas’ or dis-interested in and dis-associated from the Deed of Creation as they excelled in the quest of Paramatma.

The subsequent Srishti related to ‘Sthaanaatmas’ or Deities of their own Positions like Water, Fire, Earth, Air, Sky, Antariksha / Ether, Swarga, Diks (Directions), Oceans, Rivers, Vegetables, Medicinal and other herbs and medicines, Kaala Pramana of Measures of Time, Days and Nights, Weeks, Fortnights, Months, Years,Yugas, Maha Yugas and Kalpas.  Brahma then created Devatas, Pitru Devas, Nine Manasa Putras named Bhrigu, Angira, Marichi, Pulastya, Pulaha, Kratu, Daksha, Atri and Vasishtha who were acclaimed as Nava Brahmas. He created Rudra from his anger; created the concepts of Sankalpa ( Conception), Dharma (Virtue) and Vyavasaya (Endeavour and Enterprise). Out of the Pancha Praanaas or Five branches of Life’s breath viz. Praana-Udana- Vyaana-Samana-and Apaana, Daksha was created from the speech, Marichi from the eyes, Angirasa from the head, Bhrigu from the heart and Atri from the ears, all from Brahma’s Praana Vayu; besides Pulastya from Udana Vayu, Pulaha from his Vyana Vayu, Vasishtha from his Samaana Vayu and Kratu from Apaana Vayu. Brahma continued Srishti of Devas from his mouth, Pitras from his chest, human beings from his organ of generation, Asuraas from his buttocks ; Brahmanas from his face, Kshatriyas from his chest, Vaishyas from his thighs and others from his feet. He also created lightning, thunder, clouds, rainbows, Mantras of Rig-Yajur-Saama Vedas, Yaksha-Piscacha-Gandharva-Apsara-Kinnara-Raakshaas; birds, animals, reptiles and seeds.

While on the topic of Srishti, Suta Maha Muni made a diversion on Kalpaas and Manvantaras. [ If Brahma’s age is hundred years, a day and night of his is a Kalpa (stated to be 8.67 billion years) comprising 28 Manvantaras; each Manvantara has 71 Maha Yugas and each Maha Yuga has 4.3 million years.( Satya Yuga is stated to be of 40 percent of Maha Yuga, Treta Yuga 30 percent, Dwapara Yuga 20 percent and Kali Yuga is 10  percent) But between each Manvantara, there is stated to be a gap of four yugas called Yuga Sandhi, while the intermediate time between Kalpas is Prati Sandhi. Each Kalpa has two parts: Purvaartha and Parartha. We are now in Varaha Kalpa (there are stated to be of thirty such Kalpaas) and Vaivaswara Manvantara while Brahma’s age is calculated as 51 years and the first night!]

As Brahma spent his thousand Yugas long first night, he found water all around and resurrected Earth again -and on the broad  lines of what Varaha Swarupa indicated-  materialised formally the Chatur Lokaas, Sapta Dwipas and Sapta Samudras. He revived the Srishti of Antariksha, Sun, Moon and other Planets, Pitras, Time, Yugas, Purusharthas of Dharma-Artha-Kaama-and Mokshas. From his first face of the ‘Chaturmukha’, he created Gayatri, Ruks, Yagni related Agni shtoma etc; Veda Vangmaya, Veda Chhandas, and various Agni-Karyas; from his Southern Face were generated Yajur Veda, Traishthub Chhandas; Panchadasa Stomas and Brihat Stoma; from his western face emerged Saama Suktaas, Jagati Chhandas, Papta dasa Stoma; Atiraatra of Jyotishthoma etc; from Brahma’s fourth Face emerged Atharva Veda, Anushtub and Vairaaja Chhanda etc. Through out the Yuga Periods, there were countless species of Creation were materialised of ‘Charaachara’ or mobile and Immobile nature, defying description.

Brahma continued his Manasika Srishti or Mind-Born Creation and as a result were generated Pancha Karthas viz. Rudra, Dharma, Manasa, Ruchi and Akriti, all illustrious in their own right in the context of ‘Prajaa Rakshnana’ or Safety of the Public. As and when ‘Aoushadhis’ became short of supply and availability, Rudra Deva came to recscue and recreated the material and the grateful Bhaktas make offerings to him by the herbs and medicines in gratitude; when shortages of these were felt, Rishis and Brahmanas perform Vanaspati Homas from material placed in Three Kapaalaas or Plates along with three kinds of Mantras of Chhandaas viz. Gayatri-Trishtup and Jagati and that was why Rudra was called Traimabika or he who was worshipped from three ‘Ambakaas’or Kapaalaas or Plates. Dharma the next Creation of Brahma had been a Promoter of Virtue which revived Man Kind and other Significant Species; Manas (Knowledge), Ruchi ( Shraddha /Faith) and Akriti (Beauty) were the other Entities assisting Dharma as they respectively denoted Mind, Interest and Physique. By applying Tamasika Guna, Brahma desired to put to use the traits of Dharma and halved his body into two and created Shata Rupa or of Hundred Forms and the latter was indeed virtually the mother of humanity. After severe Tapas for thousands of years Shatarupa was blessed with a famed husband viz. Swayambhu the First Manu who too was of Brahma’s own ‘Amsha’or variation; their progeny were two sons viz. Priyavrata and Uttanapada (father of the the reputed  Dhruva) and two daughters viz.  Akuti and Prasuti. Akuti was married to Ruchi Prajapati whose sons were Yajna and Dakshina. Prasuti was  married to Daksha Prajapati whose thirteen daughters viz. Shraddha, Lakshmi, Dhriti, Tusthi, Pushti, Medha, Kriya, Buddhi, Lajja, Vasu, Shanti, Siddhi and Kirti were wedded to Dharma; the  rest of them and their husbands were as follows: Sati-Rudra, Khyati-Bhrigu, Sambhuti-Marichi, Smriti-Angirasa, Priti-Pulaha, Kshema-Kratu, Sannati-Pulastya, Anasuya-Atri, Urja-Vasishta, Agni-Swaha and Swadha-Pitaras.

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