Skanda Installed as the Commander-in-Chief ||30||
1Narada said: Then, along with Suras, Skanda descended from the top of the Sveta mountain. In order to slay Taraka, he went to the southern direction.
2-3Thereupon, the son of Pavaka (i.e. Skanda) was crowned and invested with the power of the overlord of all the spirits and goblins on the banks of the river Sarasvati, O son of Pandu. He was made the lord of Grahas (i.e. evil demons harassing people), Upagrahas (i.e. minor demons), Vetalas (vampires), Sakinis (ogresses), Unmadas (i.e. evil spirits of madness), Apasmaras (epileptic fits) and the Pisacas (ghosts eating flesh) by Devas.
4-6It was for the purpose of preventing those spirits etc. of wicked intentions from transgressing the limits. Hence he who is attacked by these, shall seek refuge in the son of Pavaka. Grahas etc. avoid a person whose senses are controlled; none of whose sense-organs are loose and disordered; who is always pure and is never lethargic or idle; who is godly and a devotee of Skanda. They are destroyed even when seen from far by those who are devoted to Maheshvara or to Narayaga.
7-9aThen, along with all the Suras, Guha went to the banks of Mahi . There be listened to the excellent greatness of Mahi, recounted by the Devas. Skanda was surprised and he bowed down to the river; thereafter, the Devas, the chief of whom was Sakra, bowed down to Guha who had resorted to the southern bank and established himself there and spoke these words:
9b-16“O Skanda, no army obtains pleasure and happiness without a sinless Commander-in-chief duly installed as such. Hence allow us to consecrate you as such, with the holy and auspicious waters of Mahi and the ocean. We shall sprinkle those waters over you and it behoves you to glance at us at that place. Just as the footprints of others get (i.e. are included) in the footprint of an elephant, so also all other holy spots and centres of pilgrimage get merged in the waters of the ocean and Mahi. Just as the Three-eyed Lord is glorified as comprising all the living beings, so also the place of meeting of Mahi and the ocean comprises all the holy spots. Just as the semi-female form of Rudra bestows everything, so also the holy bath in Mahi and the ocean bestows all benefits. If a person, O Skanda, offers libations to the manes with the feelings of devotion in this holy spot, there is no doubt in this that it is as good as offering the libations in all holy spots. The fact that the water herein is saltish should not be minded much, for just as various grasses etc. of astringent or bitter taste when taken in by a cow, yield sweet milk, so also the water herein bestows delight and satisfaction to Pitys”
17-18While the Devas were speaking thus, Kapila , the sage proclaimed, “This is true. O son of Uma. Mahi comprises all holy waters. Kardama (my father) and I have understood the great qualities of this Tirtha. I have abandoned ajl (the other parts of) the earth and I stay here after putting up my hermitage.”
19-22Then Mahesvara said “What has been said by the Suras is true.” Brahma and others also told him, “Here you shall be our leader once again. O hero, we shall perform your sacred ablution here. Command us.” Thereupon, the noble- minded Skanda who was surprised, took his bath there and spoke these words to them. “Let Devas perform the rite of sprinkling the water over me.” Thereupon, they collected all the requisites for the consecrative ablution in accordance with (the injunctions of) the Sastras . Four principal Rtviks, viz. Brahma, Kapila, Brihaspati and the fourth one Vishvamitra performed the Homa-rite in the fire sanctified by Mantras.
23There were hundreds of other sages too who had mastered the Vedas. There, O descendant of Bharata, Mahadeva performed a miracle.
24-25He was seen in the form of a Linga stationed in the middle of the sacred fire-pit. The Lord had assumed the form of the Linga in order to impress that “It is I myself, stationed in the fire, that always receive the Havis offerings.” The Devas bowed down with great joy to that matchless Linga.
26-28aIt is destructive of all sins, O son of Pritha, and it bestows all desired benefits. At the end of the rite of Homa, an excellent seat studded with divine gems and jewels was offered by Himalaya. Skanda sat there in that auspicious seat. Thereafter, the Devas poured the sacred water to the accompaniment of holy Mantras, in accordance with the injunctions, over Kumara, the son of Sankara. All the auspicious materials required for the same had been duly collected together. Then the (following) gods sprinkled water over Kumara, the son of Sankara (for installing him as the Commander-in-chief).
28b-37aIndra, Vishnu of great valour, Brahma, Rudra, all the Planets beginning with Sun-god, the two gods, Fire and Wind, Adityas, Vasus, Rudras, Sadhyas, the two Asvins, Visvedevas, Maruts, Gandharvas, celestial damsels, divine sages, Brahmanical sages, Valakhilyas, Maricipas, Vidyadharas, Siddhas with yogic power, sages Pulastya, Pulaha and others, Manes, Kasyapa, Atri, Marici, Bhrigu, Ahgiras, Daksha, Manus, Luminaries, Seasons, Rivers in embodied forms such as Mahi and others, Oceans beginning with Saltish Ocean, Holy Spots beginning with Prabhasa, Earth, Firmament, Quarters, Trees, Mountains, Mothers beginning with Aditi who personally performed special auspicious rites for Guha, Serpents, chief of whom was Vasuki, Garuda and Aruna (the two brothers), Varuna, Dhanada, Yama with his attendants, Rakshasa Niriti, Goblins, Flesh-eaters, Dharma, Brhaspati, Kapila, Visvamitra and various other groups of Devas too numerous to be mentioned. All these performed the rite of ablution by sprinkling the holy water over Guha joyously on the bank of Mahi.
37b-38Thereafter Pasupati gave unto him the great army of all the Bhutas (Goblins) that was very terrible. It made a loud rumbling sound and was capable of subduing the haughtiness of Devas, Daityas and others. Vishnu gave him the Vaijayanti garland that increased strength.
39Uma whose lustre was like that of the Sun gave him two dustless clothes. Ganga gave him an excellent divine Kamandalu (water-pot) originating from nectar (or producing nectar).
40Along with the Ocean Mahi, the great river, gave him the necklace of rosary beads with great joy. Brihaspati gave Kumara a staff.
41Garuda gave his beloved son Mayura (‘Peacock’) having a cluster of feathers of various colours as tail. Aruna gave him a cock Tamracuda (‘having copper-coloured crest’).
42-44Lord Varuna gave him a goat fully possessed of strength and vigour. Brahma gave him a deer hide that was (conducive to) victory and the acquisition of sacred knowledge. He gave him four attendants also who had great vigour and prowess. They were his mental sons named Nandisena, Lohitaksha, Ghaptakarga and the fourth one who was well-known as Kusumamalin and had excessive strength. Then Lord Sthanu (Siva) gave him his great Parsada (named) Kratu.
45Indeed in the course of the war between Devas and Asuras this infuriated attendant had killed with his hands fourteen million Daityas of terrible deeds.
46Yama then gave him two attendants comparable to Yama and Kala. They were Unmatha and Pramatha. They had excessive vigour and great lustre.
47The joyous Sun-god gave unto Karttikeya, O son of Pritha, his two constant followers, the Subhrats.
48Soma (the Moon) gave his attendants Mam and Sumam who resembled Kailasa peak and had white garlands and (scented) unguents.
49-52Agni gave him (two attendants) of great strength, viz. Jvalajihva and Jyotish. Vishnu of long strides gave Skanda three attendants, viz. Parigha, Bala and Bhima of very great strength. Vasava, the slayer of the warriors of enemies, gave the son of Mahesha two attendants Utkrosa and Pancala who wielded thunderbolt and baton (respectively). Indeed those two had slain in battle many enemies of Mahendra. O foremost one among the descendants of Bharata, the delighted Asvins gave Skanda (two attendants) Vardhana and Bandhana who were great experts in Ayurveda.
53Vayu gave Karttikeya two attendants Bala and Atibala who had big mouths and were very powerful.
54-56Lord Varuna gave the warriors Ghasa and Atighasa. O son of Pritha, Himavan gave his daughter’s son (two attendants) Suvarcas of noble soul and Ativarcas. Meru gave Kancana and Meghamalin. The delighted Vindhya gave the son of Svaha the two splendid attendants Ucchrita and Atisringa who were great fighters with stones.
57Accompanied by river Mahi the Ocean gave the two heroic attendants Samgraha and Vigraha who wielded iron clubs.
58Parvati of beautiful and auspicious appearance gave the son of Agni Unmada, Pushpadanta and Sankukarpa.
59Suparpa gave the son of Jvalana (Fire-god) two attendants Jaya and Mahajaya, two serpents who were the most excellent ones among mighty warriors.
60Thus Sadhyas, Rudras, Vasus, Pitris and all others who are the foremost in the world gave attendants to Skanda.
61They were exceedingly powerful, of varying grades of strength and potentiality. They had different kinds of weapons and ornaments. They are too numerous, O Phalguna, to be reckoned.
62The Mothers gave the Lord groups of Mothers who were very auspicious and by whom the three worlds including, mobile and immobile beings have been pervaded.
63-69The Mothers are as follows: Prabhavati, Visaiaksi, Gopala, Gonasa, Apsujata, Brihaddandi, Kalika, Bahuputraka, Bhayankari, Cakrangi, Tirthanemi, Madhavi, Gitapriya, Alatakshi, Catula, Salabhamukhi, Vidyujjihva, Rudrakali, Satolukhalamekhala, Iataghaptakinkigika, Cakrakshi, Catvaralaya, Putana, Rodana, Ama, Kotara, Meghavahini, Urdhvavepldhara, Jarayus, Jarjaranana, Khantakheti, Dahadaha, Dhamadhama, Jaya, Bahuvem, Bahusira, Bahupada, Bahustani, Satolukamukhi, Krishna, Karnapravarana, Sunyalaya, Dhanyavasa, Pasuda, Dhanyada, Sada. These and many other Mothers (were given unto him). O leading scion of the family of Bharata, since they (those Mothers) are innumerable, I am not able to reckon them.
70-71They dwelt on trees and quadrangles; they had their abodes in the places where four roads meet; they lived in caves and cremation grounds and they had mountains, cascades and cataracts as their regular dwelling places. They had different kinds of dress and ornaments. They assumed different kinds of forms. They spoke different languages and they wielded different kinds of weapons. They surrounded Guha there.
72-73Then the glorious Guha shone like another Guha (i.e. He was matchless). He was crowned and invested with the office of the Commander-in-chief by the different Devas and great sages. Then the son of Fire-god bowed down severally to all of them, the leaders among whom were Bhava and Brahma, and said to them. “Let the boon be chosen.”