Śrīmad Devi Bhāgavatam | Book 6 Chapter 8
THE SIXTH BOOK
On Śachī’s praising the Devī
1-11. Vyāsa said:
O King! Hearing that the wife of Indra had taken refuge under Brihaspati, the King Nahuṣa became very angry towards Brihaspati and spoke to the Devas:
“O Devas! I hear that the stupid son of Angirasa has given protection to Indra and has kept her in his house; I will therefore kill him quickly.”
Seeing the terrible Nahuṣa thus angry, the Devas and Riṣis consoled him and said:
O King of kings! Do not be angry; quit this vicious motive yours.
See, the Riṣis in all the Dharma Śāstras, have declared the holding of illicit connection with other's wives as a very heinous crime and have blamed it very much.
You can consider that the daughter of Pulomā is always chaste, devoted to her husband and very good-natured. How can she, when her husband is alive, take another husband?
O Lord! You are now the Lord of the three worlds and hence the Defender of Faith and Religion; and if a person like you act irreligiously, all the subjects will then go to annihilation.
One who is a Lord should always observe the rules of good conduct.
Besides there are many other celestial women in this Heaven as beautiful as Śachī; you can satisfy your thirst with them.
Mutual love is recognised by the wise as the true originator of amorous dealings; ravishing a woman by force destroys all amorous sentiments.
O King! And if the mutual love be similar and equal in all respects, then comes the true happiness; you have now got the post of Indra; therefore quit this idea of holding illicit connection with other's wives and indulge in other good thoughts.
Demerits destroy prosperity and merits increase it. Therefore, O King! Leave all these bad thoughts and make your heart take a good turn and be happy.
12-15. Nahuṣa said:
“O Devas! Where were you all when Indra stole away the wife of Gautama and when the Moon stole away the wife of Brihaspati? It is easy to give advice to others but to act according to that is very rare in this world.
O Devas! Let the qualified Devī come to me you will derive much benefit from it and the Devī, too, will get Her highest happiness; there is no doubt in this.
I tell you truly that in no other way I will be satisfied; bring Indrāṇī here quickly, whether by good words or by force.”
16-17. The Devas and Munis heard the words of the king Nahuṣa, smitten by the Cupid's arrows, got terrified and said:
“We will bring Indrāṇī to you by gentle words.”
Saying thus, they went to the house of Brihaspati.
18-21. Vyāsa said:
O King! The Devas, going to the house of Brihaspati, spoke thus with folded hands:
O Guru! We know that Indrāṇī has taken shelter in your house; we will have to hand her over today to the king Nahuṣa for we all united have handed over the post of Indra to Nahuṣa.
Let this beautiful Lady now choose and worship him.
Hearing these awful words of the Devas, Brihaspati said to them:
“O Devas! This chaste woman, devoted to her husband, has now taken my shelter; therefore I can never part with her.”
The Devas said:
“O Guru! Kindly advise then - if you do not part with Śachī Devī - how the king Nahuṣa be pleased; if he becomes angry, it will then be very difficult to please him.”
22-31. Brihaspati said:
“O Devas! Let Śachī now go to Nahuṣa, and tempt him with enticing words and make this condition that when her husband's death will be known to her, she will then accept Nahuṣa as her husband.
How could she accept another husband when her husband was alive.
Therefore let her now go in quest of her high- souled husband. Let Śachī thus make condition with him and, thus deceiving him, let her try her best to bring back her husband.
O King! Then, after coming to this conclusion, Brihaspati and other Devas went with Indrāṇī to the king Nahuṣa. Seeing them come, especially looking at Indrāṇī the artificial king Nahuṣa became very glad and said to Indrāṇī:
“O Beloved! Today I am become the real Indra. O beautiful-eyed One! Worship me as your husband; see the Devas now have made me to be worshipped by all the gods.”
When Nahuṣa spoke thus, the Devī Śachī became filled with great shame; she began to tremble and said to the king:
“O Lord of the Devas! I desire to ask a boon from you. Better wait till I ascertain whether Indra is dead or alive, there is this doubt in my heart whether he lives or whether he is dead.
O King of kings! Let me, first of all, clear my doubts. Kindly excuse me and wait till then. I tell this truly that after I ascertain the fact, I will worship you. I do not know anything whether Indra is dead or whether he has gone anywhere else.”
When Śachī Devī spoke thus, Nahuṣa became very glad and saying “let it be so” dismissed her.
32-47. Thus having received permission from the King to depart, Śachī hurriedly went to the Devas and spoke to them to try their best to bring Indra back as soon as possible.
O King! Hearing these sweet and holy words of Indrāṇī the Devas intently consulted with each other how they could get back Indra. They then went to Vaikuṇṭha and began to praise with hymns the original Deva, the God Viṣṇu, the Lord of the Universe, kind to those that seek His refuge.
The Devas, skilled in speaking, spoke to Viṣṇu with a very troubled heart:
“O Lord! Indra, the Lord of the Devas, is very much troubled with his sin Brahmāhatyā. Where is he staying now, invisible to all the beings?
O Lord! He is now overcome with the sin Brahmāhatyā by killing Vritra, the best of the Brāhmins. We ask your skilful and intelligent advice.
O Lord! You are the sole refuge of him as well as of us. We are now involved in a great difficulty. Kindly show us the way how we, as well as Indra, can get out of this difficult crisis.”
Hearing the pitiful words of the Devas, Viṣṇu said:
Let Indra perform the Aśva-medhā sacrifice (Horse sacrifice) for the purification of his sins. By this Yajna, that can destroy all sins, Indra will be purified and he will regain his Indraship; there is no doubt in this.
The more so because the Devī, the Universal Mother, will be pleased with his Horse sacrifice and will destroy all his sins, Brahmāhatyā and others.
Lo! Merely remembering Her destroys heaps of sins; and, if by this Horse sacrifice, She be pleased, what wonder is there that sins of a more grave nature would be destroyed!
And let Indrāṇī worship Bhagavatī daily; happiness will undoubtedly be gained by worshipping that most Auspicious One!
By this the King Nahuṣa will be particularly deluded by the World Mother and will then be quickly destroyed by the sin committed by himself. And Indra, purified by Aśva Medhā, will soon regain his position and all his wealth.
O king! Thus hearing the sweet beneficial words of Viṣṇu of indomitable prowess, the Devas went to the spot, where resided Indra.
Brihaspati and the other Devas consoled the distressed Indra and made him celebrate duly in right order, the Horse sacrifice the greatest of all sacrifices.
Indra then distributed his sin Brahmāhatyā amongst the trees, rivers, mountains, women, and the earth.
48-51. Thus casting aside his sin on all the above things, Indra became again free from his sin, and, getting rid of his fever and uneasiness, abided by the time and remained there invisible in the tubular stem of the lotus.
Doing that wonderful act, the Devas started from there and reached their own abodes. The daughter of Pulomā, suffering from her bereavements from Indra, spoke then to Brihaspati with great sorrow:
“O Lord! Why is my husband still invisible to me, when he has performed the Aśva Medhā sacrifice? Kindly show me the way how I can get a sight of him. ”
52-62. Brihaspati said:
“O Devī! Worship the most Auspicious Bhagavatī; surely She will make your husband sinless and you will see him.
The Devī Ambikā, the Upholdress of the Universe, will desist the King Nahuṣa from doing the wrongful act and it is She that will delude him by Her Māyā and get his downfall from the Heavens.
O King! When Brihaspati spoke thus, Śachī Devī got initiated by him in the Devī Mantram, capable to secure success in any undertaking.
Thus getting the Mantram from her Guru, She began to worship the Devī Bhuvaneśvarī duly with flowers, sacrificial victims and other necessary articles for worship.
Thus Indrāṇī, with a view to see her husband, performed the worship of the Devī; she quitted all the articles of enjoyment and luxury and assumed the garb of an ascetic;
thus some time passed away, when the Devī was pleased and appeared before her on the back of a Swan, in Her peaceful form, ready to grant boons to Indrāṇī.
She looked, then, fiery like thousands of Moons; Her lovely beauty appeared in rays like thousands and thousands of fixed lightnings.
The four Vedas personified began to praise Her in hymns from the four sides. Her two hands were adorned with a noose and a goad, and Her two other hands made signs to grant boons and to discard all fear.
The Vaijayantī garland of clear crystal-like gems suspended from Her neck up to Her feet. Her face was adorned with smiles and signs as if she would grant favours. She had three eyes and was the ocean of mercy and the Mother of all the Jīvas from a worm up to Brahmā.
Her two heavy breasts were filled with unbounded ocean of nectar-like juice of Peace and Mukti. She was the Goddess of innumerable worlds, the Goddess of all and the Highest, endowed with all the knowledges and the Incarnate of the Undecaying and Immoveable Brahmā.
The Devī, then, began to address Śachī, the wife of Indra, in pleasant words and in voice deep like a rolling thunder.
63-69. The Devī said:
O Darling to Indra! Better now ask your desired boon. I am much pleased with your worship. O Beautiful One! I have come here to grant you boon.
To see Me is not an easy task; by the collected merits, acquired in thousands and thousands of births one is able to See Me.
Hearing the words of the Devī, Śachī Devī, the wife of Indra, fell prostrate before Her feet and began to speak to the Highest Goddess, the Bhagavatī, Who seemed graciously pleased:
“O Mother! I now desire from Thee, that I may see my husband whom I attained after great difficulty, that I be freed from the fear arising out of King Nahuṣa and I want that Indra be reinstated as Indra as he was before.”
The Devī said:
“O Lady of the Devas! Better go with this My messenger (Duti) to Mānasarovara; there is installed My fixed form, named Viśvakarma.
You will see your Indra staying there very sorrowful and overwhelmed with terror.
I will delude the King Nahuṣa within a very short period.
O large-eyed One! Be calm and quiet; I will fulfil your desires; soon I will delude that king and deprive him of the seat of Indra.”
70-71. Vyāsa said:
The wife of Indra accompanied the messenger of the Devī and quickly reached the presence of her husband Indra. She was very pleased to see her long-wished for husband, in the state of disguise.
Here ends the Eighth Chapter of the Sixth Book on the praising of the Bhagavatī by the wife of Indra and on getting the sight of Indra in the Mahāpurāṇam, Śrīmad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Mahāṛṣi Veda Vyāsa.