Biographies | Daitya
From Agni Puraan, 10
See also Shraaddh in Gayaa
Gayaa has bee regarded a very high Teerth, especially for Pind Daan. Why is it so? Once it so happened that there was an Asur named Gayaa. He did a severe Tap there. As usual Devtaa got frightened from his Tap, so they went to Bhagavaan and asked Him to help them. Vishnu went to Gayaasur and asked him to ask for any Var. He said - "Hey Bhagavan, I should be the holiest Teerth among all the Teerth on the Earth." "So be it" and Bhagavaan disappeared. As he was now greatest Teerth, all people started to come for his Darshan. Prithvi became empty of people, because all people went to Vishnu Dhaam after doing his Darshan. So Brahmaa Jee and Devtaa went to Vishnu again complaining that just by seeing a Daitya all people were going to Vishnu Dhaam. Hari said - "You go to Gayaasur and ask his body to be used for Yagya." So Brahmaa Jee went to Gayaasur and asked his body to perform a Yagya. Gayaasur considered it a holy purpose so he agreed for it.
Brahmaa Jee started doing Yagya on his forehead. But when the time came for Poorn Aahuti, his body trembled. Brahmaa Jee again went to Vishnu and said to Him - "Bhagavan, At the time of Poorn Aaguti, Gayaasur is scared and his body is trembling." Then Vishnu called Dharm and keep Dev Shilaa (Divine stone) on his body and asked all Devtaa to sit on it. He asked His Gadaadhar form idol to keep along with Devtaa. So Dharm and all Devtaa did as Vishnu said to them to do.
What is Dev Shilaa? Dharm had a daughter from his wife Dharmvatee. Her name was Dharmvrataa. She was a great ascetic. She got married Rishi Mareechi (one of the 10 brain children of Brahmaa Jee). One day Mareechi went to bring flowers and grass from forest and got tired, so he took his food and asked his wife to massage his feet. Muni slept. At the same time Brahmaa Jee came there. She was in a flux, what to do - should I worship Brahmaa Jee or continue serving Muni? She decided to worship Brahmaa Jee as he was the Guru of her Guru. So she got up and worshipped Brahmaa Jee.
In the meantime Mareechi woke up and did not find his wife, so he cursed his wife, "You be a stone." At this Dharmvrataa also got angry, she said - "You have cursed me without any fault, you will be cursed by Shiv Jee." She kept aside Muni's curse and entered the fire. She then did Tapasyaa for long time. Vishnu etc Devtaa asked her what she wanted. She asked them to free her from Muni's curse. Devtaa said - "Maharshi's curse cannot go waste, you will become a holy stone and you will have our footprints on it. You will have to assume the form a stone to stabilize the body of Gayaasur. At that time you will be called with Devavrataa, Dev Shilaa, Sarv Dev Swaroopaa, Sarv Teerthmayee and Punya Shilaa names." At this Dharmvrataa said - "Then give me one more boon that after I become the stone all Devtaa, Brahmaa, Vishnu, Shiv etc and Devee, Lakshmee, Saraswatee, Gauree etc should live in me." "So be it" and all Devtaa went away.
So when Dharm kept that Dev Shilaa on Gayaasur's body, it was still trembling. Then all Devtaa also sat on it, but it was still trembling. Then Vishnu gave them His Gadaadhar idol and as they kept it on his body, it got stabilized. and Brahmaa Jee offered Poorn Aahuti. Later Gayaasur asked Devtaa - "Why did you play this game with me? Couldn't I be stabilized by Vishnu's words only? Since you have pressed me under a Shilaa (stone), you should bestow me a boon." Devtaa said - "O Daitya, We stabilized your body only to make a Teerth, that is why it will be a dwelling place for Vishnu, Brahmaa and Shiv. It will be more famous than all the Teerth, and this Teerth will give Brahm Lok to Pitar." After saying this all Devtaa started living there only. Other Devee and Teerth also started living there. Thus Vishnu had to be present on his body and He always lives there in His Gadaadhar form, that is why it is the holiest Teerth among all Teerth.
Created by Sushma Gupta on 5/27/03
Updated on 05/04/13