Essence Of
Vamana Purana


4    ‘Shiva Lingodbhavana’ ( The origin of Shiva Linga) and its worship
Dharma was the ManasPutra of Brahma and the former who was married to one of the daughter of Daksha Prajapati named Murti gave birth to four sons viz. Hari, Krishna, Nara and Narayana.

Of these Hari and Krishna took to Yogaabhyaas while Nara and Narayana practised Tapas at Badarikaashrama. Indra was unnerved by the severe Tapasya of Nara- Narayana and deputed Rambha and some other Apsaraas along with Kama Deva and Vasanta Ritu.Kama Deva released an arrow named ‘Unmadan’which literally meant frustrating or maddening. Shiva got restless with obsession and passion with feelings of great void in the absence of Sati Devi and like a lunatic went around bathing inYamuna and many Rivers, Tirthas, Sarovaras, flower gardens, mountain peaks and enchanting forests, sometimes singing songs of sorrow missing Sati and sometimes crying for her. Finally he met the son of Yaksha King Kubera called Paanchaalika and asked him to take over the Unmadana Astra of Kama Deva as he only could absorb it since he had the history of resisting even more powerful Astras like Vijrumbhana, Santaapana and Unmadana; in return, Shiva said that he would bestow the boon to the Yaksha viz. in the Chaitra Month, all the Beings in the World including children, youth and the elderly would worship him as also sing, dance and play vocal and instrumental music and that he would be reputed as Panchakilesh everywhere. Having become free from the after effects of the attack by Kamadeva of the ‘Unmadini’ arrow, Bhaganan Shiva then moved freely from place to place, although avoiding another attack by Kamadeva. In the course of his wanderings, Mahadeva reached Vindhyachala and entered Daaruvana where the Ashramas of illusrious Maharshis existed. Except Pativratas like Anasuya and Arundhati, all the wives and daughters of Maharshis got infatuated with Parama Shiva who was naked and had such mesmerising body features and enchanting looks; in fact the females of Daaruvana followed him like lunatics. Maharshis of Daaruvana were in great rage: Tadastu Rishaye drishtaa Bhargavaangaraso Muney, Krodhhan -vitaabuvansarvey Lingosyapatataan Bhuvi! Tatah papaat Devasya Lingam Pruthveen Vidaarayan, Antardhaanam Jagaamaatha Trishul Nilalohitah/ (The Maharshis like Bhargava and Angirasa cursed Mahadeva to let his Linga fall on Earth; as soon as he received the Shaapa, Shiva disappeared to Rasatala and started creating havoc to the whole world and shook away the Earth, mountains, Rivers and Seas and commenced destroying Rasaatala upwards. Brahma by his Hamsavahana and Vishnu by his Garuda vahana ran to the Place where Shiva Linga Patana or his Linga fell and traced Shiva’s presence in the Patalaas and extolled him as follows: Namostu tey Shuapaaney Namostu Vrishabhadwaja, Jeemutavaahana Kavey Sharva Traibaaka Shankara/ Maheshvara Maheshaana Suvarnaaksha Vrishaakapey, Daksha Yagna kshayakara Kaalrupa Namostutey/ Twamaadirasya Jagatsarvam Madhyam Parameshwara, Bhavaanantascha Bhagavan Sarvagastwam Namostutey/ Having eulogized Parama Shiva as above, both Vishnu and Brahma overruled the curse of the Maharshis of Daaruvana and requested Shiva to take back his Linga again. Shiva agreed to do so only on the condition that his Linga was worshipped by one and all and both Brahma and Vishnu readily agreed; in fact Brahma materialised a golden Linga called Jagat Pradhaana and performed puja to Shiva’s feet at once as others followed suit viz. Krishna worshipped a black coloured Linga called Urjita and did puja to Shiva’s head; Sanaka, Sanandana, Sanatana and Sanat Kumars worshipped Shiv’s heart naned as named Jagadrati; Sapta Rishis called Darbhamayi Linga as Vishwa Yoni; Narada named the Linga called Jagatvija as ‘Ákaasha’; Indra prayed to a Diamond Linga called Jagatvida; Surya worshipped a copper Linga called Vishwasruga; Chandra performed Puja to a Pearl Linga called Jagatpati and so on.[Details are provided in the Essence of Skanda Purana by the same Author in the Chapter of Shata Rudreeyam]. Shiva then acquired the names of Shaivaites, Pashupataits, Kaalamukhayaas and Bhairavas by different Shiva Bhaktas; Shakti Rishi, the son of Vasishta Muni as also Shaki’s sishya named Gopayan spread the cult of Shaivism; Bharadwaja Rishi and Somashekhara King Rishabha were the pioneers of Maha Pasuupatya; Maharshi Apastamba initiated Kalamukha Sampradaaya; and Yaksha King Kubera venerated Shiva in the sampradaya of Kaapaalikas or Bhairavaas.Yet Kama Deva persisted his efforts to pester Maha Deva and used ‘Santaapa Astra’ named floral arrow and as he was enraged, Shiva opened his Third Eye as Kamadeva got burnt off and got re-materialised as ‘Ananga Deva’ thanks to the merciful Mahadeva. It was that Ananga who was sent by Indra to disturb the attention of Rambha and other Apsaras like Rambha along with Kamadeva and the Vasanta Ritu referred to above so that Dhara Deva’s sons Nara Narayana Munis. The smiling Narayana Rishi who was least disturbed by these so-called diversions ushered in by the Apsaras and others in the Troupe created from his thighs an astonishingly beautiful Apsara named Urvashi and asked Rambha and other Apsaras- who actually came to tempt Nara Narayana Rishis at the instance of Indra to treat Urvashi as a return- gift to Indra since Urvashi too was worthy of joining the corps of Apsaraas! The Apasaras returned to Indra and narrated the greatness of Nara Narayana Maharshis and Indra was felt too small since he foolishly under-estimated the magnificence of the Maharshis; Indra also felt bad that in this context he involved Kama Deva who provoked no less a Personality as Maha Deva himself and as a result lost his very existence but of the mercy of Shiva!

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