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Vayu Purana – Uttara kandha 46-51

Vayu Purana

Uttara Kandha 46-51

– 46 –

Gaydmdhatmya (Contd.): Sila-tirtha and Other Sacred Spots

1Sanatkumara said: O Narada, listen. I shall recount the greatness of the slab of rock, that confers salvation. Devas and the prominent sages sing of the greatness of the slab.
2That rocky slab situated on the earth, has the forms of Devas. It is highly sanctifying. The wonderful Silatirtha1 is well known in the three worlds.
3On touching it, all the people in the worlds went to Hari’s city (Vaikuntha). When the three worlds became void, Yama’s city became empty thereby.
4Accompanied by Indra and others Yamawent to Brahma and reported (to him) the wonderful event, “O Pitamaha, take back this staff of office as well as the assignment offered to me as Yama (the controller of the world).”
5Brahma then said to Yama, “Keep it in your house”. Advised by Brahma, Dharmaraja retained the slab in his house.
6Yama continued to carry out his duty, viz. the chastisement etc. of the sinners. Thus the weighty slab became well known in the universe.
7The slab having the forms and features on a par with Brahma, Vishnu, lord Mahesvara of Devas is and Meru, in the whole of the Cosmic Egg.
8Since it was held (laid) on the head of Gayasura due to its heaviness, the happy combination of two holy things is the bestower of salvation on Pitris.
9The unborn deity (Brahma) performed Hayamedha (horse sacrifice) on the combination of the two holy things. On seeing Vishnu etc. who came to receive their due shares (in the sacrifice), the slab requested:
10“All of you take the vow of standing on the slab (for ever) to enable Pitris to attain liberation”. Saying “So be it” Vishnu and other Devas stood on the Sila (the slab of rock).
11In accordance with their previous promise, Devas stayed on the Sila in embodied and unembodied forms either through their idols of stone or footprints.
12Since the Sila was stationed on the top of the tonsured head of the Daitya, it was called Mundaprsthadri. It is the bestower ofBrahmaloka upon Pitris.
13The foot of the Sila is concealed by the mountain Prabhasa. It is called Prabhasa because it is illuminated by Bhaskara (the Sun-god).
14Silangustha (the thumb of the Sila) has come out of Prabhasa by piercing through it. The lord presiding over
stha section is glorified as Prabhasesha.
15A portion of the Silangustha is remembered as Pretasila (the Rock of the Dead). If Pindasare offered to the dead on this rock, the dead man becomes free from the state of a goblin.
16A devotee should perform his ablution at the place where the Prabhasa mountain meets the great river. Rama had his bath here in the company of the gentle lady (i.e. Sita). Hence this is remembered as ‘Ramatirtha’.
17Here Rama was requested by the great river, “O Rama, take your bath (in my waters).” Since then it became well known in the three worlds as ‘Ramatirtha’.
18Mantra—“Let all those evil sins committed by me in my hundred and odd former births, become destroyed due to my ablution in Ramatirtha.”
19A man who takes his bath repeating this Mantra and performs Sraddha and offers Pindas in Ramatirtha, goes to Vishnuloka. (When the great river requested him), Rama, the elder brother of Bharata, said, “So be it” and stayed here accompanied by Sita.
20If a devotee repeats this Mantra—“O Rama, O Rama of mighty long arms, O the bestower of fearlessness on Devas, I bow unto you, the lord Devas. Let my sin become destroyed”:
21If the devotee takes his bath repeating this Mantra and performs the Sr add ha along with the offering of Pindas, his Pitris become released from the state of a ghost and attain Pitrtva (the state of Pitrhood).
22Mantra— “O lord of Devas, you are the waters. You are the lord of the luminaries. O lord, destroy my sins committed mentally, verbally and physically”.
23After bowing to the lord of Prabhasa, one should go unto the refulgent Siva. After making obeisance to Sambhu, one should perform the oblation to Yama.
24-25When Rama had gone to the forest, Bharata came to this mountain and performed the offerings of Pinda etc. to the Pitris. The lord (Bharata) installed the idols of Rama, Sita, Laksmana and the sages. In the holy hermitage of Bharata, the foot-print of Matariga is seen by all men. It is always surrounded by highly meritorious men.
26It is established as a model for people. It contains the essentials of piety. One who performs Sraddha in M atari gapada enables all the Pitris to cross the ocean of existence (samsara).
27A man who takes bath in Ramatirtha and worships Sita and bows down to Ramesvara is not reborn as an embodied being.
28The middle region of the Sila is again covered by a mountain. It was urged by Dharmaraja by saying “Na Gaccha— Do not go”. Hence it is called Naga (mountain).
29“Yamaraja and Dharmaraja attempted to make (Gaya- sura) steady. I give Bali (oblation) unto them for the sake of liberation of (my) ancestors.
30There are two dogs of dark and variegated colour. They are born of the family of Vaivasvata (i.e. of Yama). I am giving Bali unto them. May they refrain from violence.
31May the crows stationed in east, west, north-west south and south-west accept the balls of rice offered by me (on the ground).
32O strong one, you are Yama; you are Yama’s messenger. You are a crow. Eating the oblations, destroy the sins committed during the seven births.”
33When Rama went to the forest, Bharata came to this mountain. After offering the Pindas etc. to the Pitris, Ramesa was installed by him here.
34After the bath and the worship of Ramesa accompanied by Rama and Sita, one should perform Sraddha with the offerings of Pintas. Such a pious soul shall go to Vishnu’s abode along with the Pitris and hundreds of the members of his family.
35-36On the right-hand side of the Sila, the Kundaparvata (mountain) is established. Various deities are installed there. Timiraditya, Isana, Bharga—these are the forms of Mahesvara. The Vahni, two Varunas and the four Rudras yield liberation unto the Pitris. After going to the hermitage of Bharata, the devotee should bow to them and worship them.
37He is liberated from all major sins as well as minor ones along with his Pitris. O celestial sage, a man can take bath anywhere in the hermitage of Bharata. If he performs a Sraddha etc. the fruit thereof is not lost even after a Kalpa.
38Really the Sraddha performed anywhere in Gaya is never perishing. Still they say that the Japas, Homas and penances and anything offered (as religious gift) at Bharata’s hermitage are of infinite nature.
39There are four idols of Ravi (the Sun-god) in the forms of the four Yugas. On being seen, touched and worshipped, they bestow salvation on the Pitris.
40There are two deities, viz. Muktivamana and Taraka Brahman. These deities are the boats for those who are overwhelmed by the ocean of worldly existence. Brahman is Taraka (that which enables one to cross the ocean of Sarhsara) of all people dead and alive.
41He who sees Trivikrama, Purusottama and Brahma becomes a pious soul and attains the greatest goal along with the Pitris.
42At the left foot of the Sila there is the mountain Abhyu- dyantaka established. A devotee who offers Pindas there, leads his Pitris to Brahmapura.
43Brahma performed his sacrifice along with Suras near the Naimisa forest. That Tirtha is called Mukhyatirtha (the chief of holy waters). Devas are stationed at its feet.
44O Narada, the excellent among the sages, whatever inauspicious deeds there may be, perish in the three Padas (spots) in those holy centres.
45The Naimisa forest is holy and resorted to by meritorious persons such as Vyasa, Suka, Paila, Kanva, Vedhas, Siva, Hari.
46By their mere sight, a man is liberated from all sins. On the right-hand side of the Sila, there is the Udyantaka mountain.

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