The burning of Kala ||32||

1Lomasa said: Thus all the rites pertaining to the worship of Siva (Siva-dharmahi) were narrated by him, O Brahmanas. It was out of grace that the Pasupata doctrines were explained in details in particular.
2Doctrines enshrined in various Agamas were declared truthfully in accordance with the principles. The different sects of Kapalikas were described succinctly as well as in details.
3Various kinds of holy rites were recounted to Nandin then.
4The sages said: The highly auspicious story of Kumara which has nothing to surpass it, has been completely heard by us, O highly fortunate one. We shall enquire of something more.
5The narrative of the leonine king Sveta is wonderfully mysterious. By means of his boundless devotion, Siva-Rudra has been gratified by him.
6Those who worship Lord Mahisambhu devoutly, are great devotees of noble souls. They are experts both in the path or spiritual knowledge (Jnana) and of religious rites (Karman).
7Hence all ofus enquire of you about the story of Sankara as you and none else know everything through the favour of Vyasa.
8On hearing the words of those sages, Lomasa said:
9Lomasa said: Let that wonderful anecdote be listened to, O highly fortunate ones. Even as that king was enjoying all sorts of royal pleasures, the mind of that noble-souled Sveta was directed towards virtue and piety.
10He protected the subjects righteously and ruled the earth. He was heroic and truthful in speech. He was well-versed in the Vedas. He was a constant and faithful devotee of Siva.
11That king administered the kingdom in accordance with his capacity. With devotion, he always worshipped Sambhu, the great lord, the Supreme Being, greater than the greatest, the quiescent one, the ancient lord in the form of the Supreme Spirit.
12-14His whole life was spent in worshipping the Supreme Lord. Let the story of this highly fortunate (king) be listened to. My words cover Siva’s story and are full of wonders. Neither mental agonies nor physical ailments harassed the king. No natural calamity afflicted him. The people were free from all the ltis (i.e. abnormal calamitous phenomena such as excessive rain, drought etc.) and were devoid of afflicting distresses.
15In the realm of that king medicinal herbs grew naturally without being cultivated. Ascetics and Brahmanas and common people adhered to the discipline of the four castes and stages of life.
16No one had, at any time, the misery due to the death of a son. No one was insulted. There were no deadly (diseases). No one ever suffered from poverty.
17Thus a great deal of time passed even as that noble-souled king successfully engaged himself in the worship of Siva, O Brahmanas.
18-19Once, Yama sent his messengers to that king who was worshipping Sankara, the bestower of the greatest aim in life (i.e. salvation). At the instance of Citragupta, the messengers were deputed and instructed, “Let Sveta be brought.” Thinking that it should be so, the messengers came to the temple of Siva.
20Desirous of taking the king away, the messengers of Yama who had nooses in their hands and were very frightful, came there and looked for the king hurriedly.
21-23Then the messengers could not carry out the command of Dharma. After knowing this, Yama himself came there. He suddenly lifted up his baton and was desirous of taking the king away. The deity of great arms saw the king engaged in the meditation of Siva. He was endowed with great devotion to Siva. He was quiescent and possessed of pure spiritual knowledge. On seeing the king, Yama became highly excited.
24-26Immediately the king of dead ones became excessively agitated and remained (motionless) as though he was painted in a picture. The deity who in the form of Kala, caused perpetual destruction of the subjects, came very furiously to that king at that very same instant. (He was armed) with a sword of very sharp edge and a big shield. He (Yama) overwhelmed by fear was standing at the entrance. Kala spoke to Yama, the son of the Sun:
27-28“Why was this great king not taken away by you, O Dharmaraja? O Yama, (though) you are assisted by your messengers, you appear to me to be frightened. Do not delay, O deity of good holy rites. At my instance do everything quickly).” On being told thus by Kala, Dharma spoke these words befitting the occasion:
29“I shall do according to your command. There is no doubt about this. This devotee of Siva cannot be tackled by us.
30Due to fear from the Trident-bearing Lord, we stand (motionless) as though painted in a picture. On hearing Yama’s words, Kala became infuriated. Hurriedly he took up the sword intending to kill the king.
31-36As he furiously entered the temple of Siva, resembling twenty four Suns, he was seen by Siva, the Pinaka-bearing Lord (who thought): ‘This (deity) is desirous of killing my devotee, the excellent king Sveta. He is absorbed in his own soul by way of meditation. His mind has become purified by the bright light of pure knowledge. Without any differentiation he meditates upon his Atman in the form of the innermost Atman. He is self-luminous. He is greater than the greatest standing in front of him. The king is thinking about the foot of Siva who is of the nature of the Supreme Being, the cause of salvation and complete identity in form.’ Kala was rushing at him and was seen by Sadasiva, the slayer of Kala. The rogue was approaching him undeterred arrogantly. When he was seen midway between himself and Nandikesvara by Siva, the lord of the universe, the affectionate kinsman of devotees, he was stared at with the third eye by the great Lord who wanted to protect his devotee. He became reduced to ash in an instant.
37He burned Kala who had many colours, who had opened his month very wide, whose form was extremely terrible and frightening, whose sole food was the universe and who was very fierce. He was burned by a series of flames.
38-40The groups of Devas who had gathered together along with Yakshas, Gandharvas, Pisacas, Guhyakas, Siddhas, groups of celestial damsels, alI the sky-walkers, serpents, birds and the Guardians of Quarters, saw Kala enveloped in flames and stationed in front of lsvara. The king then regained consciousness and looked again and again at Kala who had come to kill him and who was then being burnt by fire. Without being excited, he prayed to Rudra who resembled the fire of Kala:
41The king said: Obeisance to Rudra the quiescent one, who is the moonlight unto himself, is the creator of himself, who is perpetual and subtle. I bow to the lord of the luminaries.
42You alone are indeed the saviour, O Lord of the universe. You are the father, mother, friend and comrade. You alone are the kinsman and relative. You are lsvara, the lord of people and of all the worlds.
43What has been done by you, O Sambhu? Who is this who has been burned in front of me? I do not know what has taken place here; what great thing has been carried out and by whom.
44On hearing this expression of the pain of that (king) who was praying thus, Sankara spoke these words enlightening that king:
45Rudra said: This Kala was burnt by me in front of you for your sake. He was seen being burnt and overwhelmed by a great mass of flames.
46On being told thus by Sambhu that excellent king became humble before Siva and spoke these words to him:
47What misdeed has been committed by this (Kala), O Sambhu? Tell me exactly. O Bhava, what for has he been reduced to this plight, ending with his death?”
48On being requested by him the Supreme Lord said: “O great king, he is one who swallows all living beings.
49O lord, it was for the purpose of swallowing you that this cruel one had come near me now. Hence, O lord, O great king, he was burnt by me.
50-51Desiring the welfare of many persons, I have killed him particularly. Those who are sinners, those who engage themselves in unrighteous activities, those who cause the annihilation of the worlds and those who propagate heretic doctrines-all these are to be killed by me.” On hearing the words of Rudra, Sveta spoke thus:
52-53“It is on account of Kala that the whole world always performs meritorious deeds: Some abide by righteous activities; some are endowed with great devotion; some are engaged in Upasanas (‘devotional rites’); others become Jnanans (‘possessors of knowledge’); some practise spiritual pursuits; and some are liberated.
54Indeed Kala is the annihilator of all mobile and immobile beings. Similarly, he is the matchless protector too (of all). He is the creator as well of the vital air of all living beings. Hence revive him back to life.
55-56If you are intent on creation, resuscitate Kala quickly. If you are inclined to annihilate all living beings, then (revive him) and give this work, O Sambhu, to the no ble-souled Kala. Without Kala nothing will take place, O Sankara.”
57On being requested thus by that valorous king, Sambhu carried out his suggestion. He did what his devotee desired (him) to do.
58Sambhu, the great Pinaka-bearing Lord, resuscitated him and made his form as it had been before. He was then fixed by him in his place, in the middle of the messengers of Yama.
59Approaching (the Lord) with shyness, he eulogized the Bull-bannered Lord. After bowing down to the fire stationed in front, this Kala spoke these words in great dismay:
60Kala said: O slaycr of Kala, O lord of Tripura, O destroyer of the three Puras. Indeed Madana was made Ananga (bodiless) by you, O lord of the universe.
61-62A very wonderful feat was performed by you in destroying the sacrifice (Yajna) of Daksha. Kalakuta, the poison, unbearable to everyone, the great poison that caused destruction of all, was swallowed by you, O Sambhu, as it was unbearable to all. The whole range of the three worlds was pervaded in the form of Linga by the great lord.
63It is called Linga by all the Suras and Asuras because it absorbs the world within it. Devas with Brahma and Vishnu at their head do not know its limits and extremities.
64They do not know the greatness of the Linga as well as the great lord of Devas. Hail to you, the Supreme Lord. Obeisance to you, O cause of the auspiciousness of the universe. I bow to you, the bluethroateded one; I salute that lord with matted hair.
65things. Obeisance to the lord in the form of knowledge of all the learned ones conversant with knowledge. You are the primordial God. You are the ancient Purusa.
66You are everything, O sole kinsman of the universe. You can be comprehended only through the Vedantas; you are of exalted magnanimity; you are worthy of being glorified by all magnanimous persons. You alone are honoured by the whole universe, O lord of the universe.
67You protect; you annihilate all the three worlds, O great lord. You are the creator. You and none else, are the lord of all living beings.
68Thus the lord of the universe was eulogized by Kala. Kala then said to king Sveta enlightening him as it were:
69In the whole of the mortal world, there is no one greater than you by whom the lord who is invincible in all the three worlds, has been conquered.
70This universe of the mobile and immobile beings has been killed by me. I am the conqueror of all the Devas. I cannot be transgressed by anyone.
71I have now become your follower, O great king. Grant me protection from fear of the trident-bearing Parameshthin, the lord of the Devas.
72On being addressed thus by Kala, Sveta laughingly spoke in a voice as majestic as the sound of clouds:
73The King said: There is no doubt about this that you are the greatest form of Siva. You are Kala in the form of sustenance and annihilation of all living beings.
74Hence you are the most adorable of all. You are the controller of all. It is on account of their fear of you that all those who perform rites seek refuge in Paramesvara with various emotional feelings, desirous of dedicating themselves.
75-76Sura said: Kala who was thus saved by the excessively righteous king regained consciousness by the grace of Siva alone. The lord was eulogized by Yama in the company of Mrityu and messengers of Yama. After bowing down and praising Siva and the king Sveta, (Kala) went to his abode, O Brahmanas. He considered himself as born once again.
77In the company of his wife Maya, he frequently recollected the great story of Siva and became surprised more and more.
78-79He said to all the messengers himself: “O messengers, let my words be heard quickly; what I suggest in my speech should be carried out scrupulously. It should not be otherwise.”
80-83Kala instructed : The following persons should never be brought to my region: Those who apply Tripundra (upon their forehead); those who have matted hair; those who wear Rudraksha; those who are called by the names of Siva; those who assume the guise of the men of Saiva cult either for the sake of livelihood or out of fear; even men who have committed sins or practised evil conduct if they are wearing Saiva garments. All these should never be brought to my region by you. They should be scrupulously avoided even if they are always sinful. What then about others, O messengers-others who worship Sadasiva, Sambhu, with great devotion? They are undoubtedly Rudras themselves.
84He who wears even a single Rudraksha on his head and the Tripundra mark in the middle of the forehead, the good persons who repeat the five-syllabled Mantra-these are to be honoured by you all and never otherwise.
85The nation, the country or the village where no wise devotee of Siva is seen-is it different from a cretnation ground? They (may) call that nation (rashtra) desa-a small place. I speak the truth unto you.
86The persons in that village where there exist no persons who practise devotional rites of Siva, should be chastised well.
87Thus Yama commanded his servants. Thinking that it should be so, they remained quiet on being much surprised.
88Such is Sadasiva, the sole lord of the worlds, the sire of the worlds. He is one and only one. He is the bestower and the chastiser, possessor of his supreme powers (Bhava), emotional feelings. He is eternal, the sole kinsman of the universe.
89-90After burning Kala, lord Mahadeva granted freedom from fear to Sveta, the king of kings, the most excellent one among the rulers of the earth. Having attained freedom from fear, the lofty-minded king Sveta resolved (to strive for salvation) and by means of supreme devotion became liberated.
91On being honoured by Devas, sages and Serpents, this Sveta. the most excellent one among kings, attained Sayujya (identity) with Siva.
92Thus Siddhi (liberation) is within the palm (i.e. within the reach) of those persons who are devoted to Mahesa, the Sire of the universe. I am speaking the truth unto you.
93Even a Candala can become an excellent man by the favour of Sankara. Hence Sankara should be worshipped with all efforts.
94-95It is only after the end of many births that devotion to Siva is born in Jnanins with great intellect. Sankara should be worshipped in every birth. Of what avail is too much talk on my part? Sadasiva should be worshipped.
96In this context they cite this ancient mythological legend in regard to the wonderful holy rite performed by a Kirata (forester) by whom the whole universe consisting of mobile and immobile beings was redeemed.