Puraan | 2-Padm Puraan | 3-Swarg Khand
2-Padm Puraan, 3-Swarg Khand, p 358-375
This section is very short - of about 80 pages, p 332-409. The importance of very few Teerth and the duties of four Aashram are given here.
Importance of Kaashee
Naarad Jee said - "After Yamunaa Snaan, one should go to Naimish Aranya Teerth. Brahmaa Jee always lives there along with Devtaa. Who desires to go to Naimish Aranya, his half sins are already destroyed. A good person should live there for one month, because all Teerth of Prithvi always live there. After that one should go to Goprataar (Guptaar) Teerth on Sarayoo's banks. Then come to Gomatee River's Raam Teerth. And then come to Kaashee where one should worship Shankar Jee and take bath in Kapilaa Kund."
Yudhishthir said - "Muni, Please tell me about Kaashee in detail, I wish to know about it more." Naarad Jee said - "I tell you a dialog in this reference. In earlier times, once Bhagavaan Shankar was sitting on Meru Parvat. Paarvatee Jee was also sitting beside him. She asked Mahaadev Jee - "How an ordinary person can get your Darshan? Tell me this for the good of the world."
Shiv Jee said - "Kaashee is my secret dwelling place and it is very dear to me. My Bhakt go there and enter me. All Daan, Tap, Snaan, Jaap, Hom meditation, study, Gyaan done in Kaashee is eternal. All sins, collected in previous lives, are destroyed as one enters Kaashee. All kinds of living beings get to Param Gati after dying there. Who live there, they attain Moksh in one life only. I myself teach him Raam's name after one dies there. This Vaaraanasee Puree is situated between two rivers - Varanaa and Asee. Even the great sinners attain Moksh there."
Naarad Jee said - "There is a Shiv Ling in Vaaraanasee known as Kapardeeshwar, which is regarded as immortal. After taking bath and worshipping Devtaa and Pitar there, all sins, desires, anger etc are destroyed. Therefore one must do Darshan of Kapardeeshwar. Take bath in Pishaachmochan Kund and worship Kapardeeshwar. In earlier times, there lived a good Braahman named Shankukarn in Kapardeeshwar area. He daily worshipped Shiv, did Paath of Rudra and did Jaap of Pranav Mantra. One day he saw a hungry Pret standing before him. He piteously asked him - "Who are you, and from where have you come here?" Pishaach replied - "Muni, I was a rich Braahman in my previous life. I had sons and grandsons also. Because of being busy in caring for my family I could not worship Devtaa, cows, guests etc, nor I did any Punya Karm. That is why I am very hungry now. I am in your shelter, please save me from this situation."
Shankukarn said - "You take bath in this Kund with concentrated mind, you will soon be uplifted from this Yoni (species)." Immediately he dipped in that Kund remembering Kapardeeshwar and as he came out of the Kund, he had left his Pishaach body and went to Shiv's Lok. Shankukarn got very happy to see this, he prayed Bhagavaan Rudra ( Rudra's Prayer is given on p 363) and lay down as a log. At the same time a Shiv Ling appeared there. Millions of flames were emanating from it. Shankukarn himself became Shiv and got absorbed in that Ling. Who listens to this story daily, he goes to Shiv; and who does Paath of this Brahmpaar Stotra ( Brahmpaar Stotra is given on p 363) in the morning and afternoon, he attains the ultimate Yog.
Then one should go to Gayaa and take bath there. Even going there gives the fruit of Ashwamedh Yagya. There is a banyan tree there known as "Akshaya Vat". Daan and Tarpan done there for Pitar are immortal. Take bath in Mahaanadee and do Tarpan of Devtaa and Pitar. Then go to Brahm Sar in Brahm Aranya. It gives the fruit of Pundareek Yagya. Then go to Udaya Mountain and do Darshan of Saavitree's footprints. Do Sandhyaa there. Sandhyaa done there even once gives the fruit of doing it for 12 years at another place. Who lives in Gayaa in both Krishn and Shukla Paksh (one whole month) he uplifts his seven generations.
Then one should go to Maninaag Teerth; then to Gautam Van; then there is Janak Koop (well), take bath there; then go to Gandakee River which has appeared from the water of all Teerth; then go to Dhruv Tapo Van. After this, one should go to Maaheshwarpad. Over 10 million (1 Crore) Teerth have been heard living in this area, one should take bath there. Then one should go there where Naaraayan always live. Brahmaa etc Devtaa, Rishi, 12 Aaditya, 8 Vasu and 11 Rudra always worship Hari there. Hari's idol is known there as Shaalgraam. There is a well there which destroys all sins. Water of four seas is always there.
Then comes Jaatismar Teerth. After taking bath in that Teerth one gets the power to remember his past life. After that one should take bath in Kosee River and come to Champak Van (Champaaran area). If one keeps fast for overnight there he gets the fruit of donation of 1,000 cows. Then one should go to Kaushik Muni's Kund where Vishwaamitra attained Param Siddhi. Then come to Champaa Puree and do Tarpan on the banks of Gangaa River. Then take bath in Gangaa-Saagar Sangam Teerth, and then in Vaitaranee River. If somebody does Aachaman in Vanshgulm Teerth, at the source place of Son and Narmadaa Rivers, he gets the fruit of Ashwamedh Yagya. Then one should go to Mahendra Parvat and take bath in Raam Teerth. Near it is Matang Kshetra, one should take bath there. After all this, one should go to Kaaveree River, then to Kanyaa Teerth, then to Gokarn Teerth, and then one should go to Godaavaree River."
Importance of Prayaag
Naarad Jee said - "Then one should go to Devhrid which is the source of Krishnvenaa River, and then take bath in Mandaakinee River. Then one should go to Gadaavaree River in Dandak Aranya and visit Sharbhang and Shuk Aashram. Then one should go to Sapt Godaavaree and then go to Mandaakinee on Chitrakoot Parvat. Th en go to Shringverpur and take bath in Gangaa River there. Then come to Prayaag (Ilaahaabaad in UP). Gangaa meets Yamunaa there. Prayaag is the land of all Devtaa. 600 million and 10 thousand (600,010,000 or 60 Crore and 10 thousand) Teerth are said to be there. One gets the fruit of Kurukshetra Snaan taking bath in Gangaa at any place.
In Sat Yug, all Teerth; in Tretaa Yug, Pushkar Teerth; in Dwaapar Yug, Kurukshetra Teerth; and in Kali Yug, Gangaa River are regarded as the most sacred places. One should do Tapasyaa in Pushkar, donate in Mahaalaya, and keep fast on Bhrigu Tung. But Gangaa's name destroys all sins, its Darshan does good, and if its water is drank or if taken bath in it, it uplifts one's seven generations. Brahmaa Jee says - "There is no Teerth like Gangaa, no Devtaa greater than Vishnu and nothing more respectable than Braahman."
Vashishth Jee said - "Hey Raajaa Dileep, You should go to pilgrimage like this. Through Sanskaar, through faith in Bhagavaan, reading Shruti and by following good people, people go to Teerth." Naarad Jee said to Yudhishthir - "After saying thus, Muni Vashishth got disappeared from there. Dileep went for pilgrimage. Thus this pilgrimage ends at Pratishthaanpur (Jhoosee). Who will go around the Prithvi in this way, he will get the fruit of 100 Ashwamedh Yagya. Because you will take Rishi also along with you, that is why you will get eight-fold more fruits than others. You wait for Vaalmeeki, Kashyap, Aatreya, Kaundinya, Vishwaamitra, Gautam, Asit, Deval, Maarkandeya, Shaunak, Vyaas, his son Shuk Dev, Durvaasaa and Jaabaali Rishi. Take them along with you on your pilgrimage." After saying this Naarad Jee got disappeared and after that Yudhishthir went for pilgrimage."
Maarkandeya and Krishn Tell the Importance of Prayaag to Yudhishthir
Soot Jee said - "Who always thinks about Teerth, he attains Param Pad. People should always accept Braahman, Tulasee, Peepal, Teerth places, and Vishnu. Who circumambulates Peepal, Tulasee, cow, and Soorya, he gets the fruit of all Teerth and goes to Vishnu Lok." Rishi said - "We want to hear more about the importance of Prayaag."
Soot Jee said - "In earlier times, when Mahaabhaarat war ended and Yudhishthir got his kingdom back, what Maarkandeya Jee told to Yudhishthir, I tell you the same now. After the war, Yudhishthir was extremely sad about the killing of so many people especially about his cousins and friends etc. He always sat lowering his head. Maarkandeya Muni was in Kaashee at that time. He knew about Yudhishthir, so he came to Hastinaapur and asked him the reason of grief. Yudhishthir told him everything. Maarkandeya Jee said - "Where there is Dharm, there is no A-Dharm seen for a fighter in a battle. But if you wish to hear about Teerth, then all good people should go to Prayaag.
From Prayaag to Pratishthaanpur (Jhoosee) is the area of Brahmaa. Who take bath here, go to Swarg and who die here, never come back on Prithvi. Indra himself protects Prayaag. Maheshwar protects the Akshaya Vat tree. There are five Kund (ponds) among which Gangaa flows there. Donating even one cow there is equal to donating 100,000 cows. Who goes in Prayaag Teerth riding on a bull or bullock cart, he falls in Narak. Who donates a girl at Sangam place he never sees Yam Lok. Who dies under the Akshaya Vat (eternal banyan) tree, he directly goes to Rudra Lok. When there blaze 12 Soorya in the sky and burn the whole Universe, but cannot burn the roots of that Vat tree. When the whole Universe submerges in water, Vishnu rests on this tree only. On Gangaa's Eastern bank are located Samudrakoop and Pratishthaanpur (Jhoosee). If somebody lives here for three nights controlling his Indriyaan and anger, his all sins are washed away. Who keeps fast under Akshaya Vat tree, he attains Brahm Gyaan.
Wherever one takes bath in Gangaa River, it gives the fruit of the bath in Kuru Kshetra, but taking bath in Gangaa-Saagar Sangam gives ten times more fruit than that. Gangaa uplifts human beings on Prithvi, Naag in Paataal Lok, and Devtaa in Swarg Lok. Gangaa is easily available everywhere except three places - Haridwaar, Prayaag, and Gangaa-Saagar Sangam. On the northern banks of Gangaa, there is a Maanas named Teerth. By keeping fast there for three nights, all wishes are fulfilled. In Maagh Maas, 66,000 Teerth gather at Sangam place. Prayaag's area is five Yojan. Who enters that area, he gets the fruit of Ashwamedh Yagya at every step. Brahmaa Jee says that "Who lives in Prayaag for one month, his all sins are destroyed."
Yudhishthir asked - "Muni, I am blessed today. Please tell me what are the benefits of Yamunaa Snaan." Maarkandeya Jee said - "She is the daughter of Soorya Dev. Both Gangaa and Yamunaa have sources in Himaalaya. There are many Teerth on the banks of Yamunaa. Both Gangaa and Yamunaa give similar kinds of results, still Gangaa is worshipped everywhere." Yudhishthir said - "Muni, Puraan describe millions of Teerth, and all are said to be very holy and wonderful, then why are you praising only one Teerth Prayaag, leaving others?" Maarkandeya Jee said - "In total 300 million and 10 thousand (300,010,000 or 30 Crore and 10 thousand) Teerth live in Prayaag. There are three fire places through which Gangaa flows. Vaayu Dev has told 350 million Teerth in Tri-Lok and Gangaa is the form of all of them. There live Devtaa, Yagya and Rishi, and worship Prayaag, this is the main reason to praise it. That is why it destroys all kinds of sins. That is why you should go to Prayaag."
Maarkandeya Jee further said - "Brahmaa, Vishnu and Mahaadev are the ultimate gods of all. Brahmaa creates this world, Vishnu sustains the world, and Rudra destroys the world at the end of the Kalp. Prayaag's area is five Yojan (45 miles or 20 Kos). All Devtaa protect it, so whoever does even any small sin there, it throws him into Narak."
Soot Jee said - "After hearing this, Paandav established their brother on the throne of Hastinaapur. Krishn said to Yudhishthir - "I tell you something because I love you, you should obey me. Devtaa and Rishi have prescribed Yagya, but the poor people cannot do Yagya, so they should go for pilgrimage. Their fruit is greater than Yagya's fruits. In Maagh Maas billions of Teerth gather at Sangam in Prayaag, therefore staying there and taking bath there in that month earn much more Punya than from other places."
Created by Sushma Gupta on 3/15/05
Updated on 05/10/13