The greatness of Varanasi ||112||
1Fire-god said: (Lord) Mahesvara (Siva) said to Gauri (consort of Siva) that Varanasi is the sacred place. It confers enjoyment and emancipation on those who reside there and recite (the name of god) Hari (Vishnu).
2Rudra (Siva) said: “The sacred place, O Gauri, has never been forsaken (by me) and hence it is called Avimukta . The repetition (of god’s names), the performance of penance and giving alms at Avimukta indeed (yields) undiminishing benefits.
3-5After rubbing away dust from the feet with a stone, one should stay at Kasi (Varanasi). He should never forsake it. The eight holy spots —Hariscandra, AmratakeiSvara, Japyesvara, Sriparvata, Mahalaya, Bhrigu, Candesvara and Kedara, remain concealed at Avimuktaka (Varanasi). Avimuktaka is the most sacred place among all sacred places.
6It extends to two yojanas in the east and half a yojana in the opposite direction. The (two) rivers Varana and Asi (flow) and Varanasi lies between the two.
7Bathing, muttering (of divine names), oblations (to gods), (one’s) death, worship of gods, ancestral rites, alms giving and stay and whatsoever done here is capable of conferring enjoyment and emancipation.