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See also Kaarttikeya;

Birth of Taarakaasur
Brahmaa's one of the ten Maanas Putra (sons from will or brainchildren - Angiraa, Atri, Bhrigu, Daksh, Kratu, Mareechi, Naarad, Pulah, Pulastya, Vashishth) was Maharshi Mareechi. Mareechi had the son named Maharshi Kashyap. Kashyap Jee had two wives Diti and Aditi. Diti gave birth to Daitya or Raakshas, and Aditi gave birth to Indra and other Devtaa. Now these Daitya didn't like Devtaa at all. In the beginning Diti had two sons - Hiranyaaksya and Hiranyakashyap, but they were kiledd by Vishnu's Avataar Varaah Avataar and Narasinh Avataar respectively. After her two sons died, Diti got very sad and she requested Kashyap Jee give her such a son who could not be won by anybody. Kashyap Jee granted this boon to her and and a son Vajraang was born to her. Vajraang means whose body parts are very strong and hard like Vajra (Indra's thunderbolt). Later they married him to Varaangee. They had the son named Taarak (Taarak+Asur = Taarakaasur).

Another Raakshas born to Diti was married to Surasaa and their children were Shoorpadm, Sinhmukh, and Ajaamukhee. Taarak and Shoorpadm grew up together and Taarak became the emperor in Shonitpur, and Shoorpadm in Veermahendra.

A story comes in Skand Puraan, in Shiv Rahasya, that there was an Asur named Akhirsen who had a daughter named Surasaa. Because of Asur's defeat at the hands of Devtaa, Daitya Guru Shukraachaarya taught her many kinds of Maayaa and she became well versed in Maayaa. She thought that if she had children from some great Rishi her children will be more powerful than Devtaa, so she approached Kashyap Jee who, at that time was busy in Tap. When he opened up his eyes he found a very beautiful girl in front of him. He yielded to her proposals. Both had happy time for long time and during this time Surasaa gave birth to three sons and one daughter - the first son was Surapadm, the second was Sinhmukh and the third one was Taarak. The daughterís name was Ajaamukhee. Of the sons, Sinhmukh had a lionís face and Taarakaasur had an elephantís face; and Ajaamukhee had the face of a goat.

According to Skand Puraan, Shiv Rahasya Taarakaasur, Shoorpadm, Sinhmukh, these three brothers and a daughter named Ajaamukhee all were Maharshi Kashyap's children from an Asur woman names Surasaa who was the daughter of Akhirsen and wanted to take revenge of Asur's defeat at the hands of Devtaa by producing more powerful children from some great Rishi. Sinhmukh had a lionís face and Taarakaasur had an elephantís face; and Ajaamukhee had the face of a goat.

According to Wikipedia information, Shoorpadm was not killed by Kaarttikeya but was left alive on the condition that he would serve Kaarttikeya as his ride as peacock (but Shiv Rahasya gives some other story); and Sinhmukh served as Durgaa's ride in the form of a Sinh (lion).

Taarak Becomes all Powerful
Taarak was determined to conquer Devtaa but it was not an easy task so he resolved to get boon from Brahmaa Jee. He did a severe Tap for him. he stood on one leg for 1,000 years, then hung himself from the tree upside down for 1,000 years. Then he lived only on air and finally he decided to sacrifice himself. Brahmaa jee was pleased with his penance and asked him to ask for boons. Taarak asked the boon of immortality from him but Brahmaa Jee said that "he shouldn't ask for impossible, so he might ask for another boon." Then he thought that he should ask that he should die under certain conditions, then he might be immortal.

At that time Shiv Jee was in Samaadhi, and none could disturb His Tap for His fury. So he could not marry and there was no question of his son. And even if he had the son, he will be so small that he will not be able to harm him. So he asked that he should die only by the hands of son of Shiv Jee when he is only six days old. Brahmaa Jee said "So be it" and went away. Now Taarak was very happy and he was almost immortal, because there was no chance of of a son fo Shiv Jee for a long time.

Now he threw all the three worlds in fright. Indra gave him His Airaavat elephant, Kuber gave him his all wealth. All good things became Taarak's property. Taarakaasur also collected his army of 100 million (10 Crore) plus the armies of Mahishaasur, Kunjar, Megh, Kaalnemi, Nimi, Manthan, Jambh, and Shumbh and declared war with Indra. By the advice of Brihaspati Jee Indra sent Vaayu Dev as his emissary, but it did not work. Then he tried Saam (counselling), Daam (luring by gifts), Dand (actual war), and Bhed (dividing) policies but they also failed. Then Yam Raaj became the Commander of Army, sitting on his buffalo, Indra saat on his chariot with Maalinee as his driver, along with other Devtaa; but Taarakaasur was too powerful, so he drove out Devtaa from Swarg and appointed Raakshas there. Devtaa could not bear all this and went to Brahmaa Jee. Brahmaa Jee came to Taarak and said - "You are very brave and courageous, but you should not harass Devtaa like this, let them live in peace in Swarg Lok."

Taarak obeyed Brahmaa Jee and came back from Swarg to Shonitpur. But his wickedness did not subside and Devtaa continued to live in fear and troubles.  Then Brahmaa Jee suggested that now there is only one way to kill him that a son should be born to Shiv Jee and he should kill him. So arrange the marriage of Shiv Jee to Paarvatee Jee who was doing Tapasyaa to get Shiv Jee as Her husband. So one can understand that Taarak was so powerful that a special person had to be born to kill him, and how he was equipped to kill him, its detailed account is given in MBH, Shalya Parv, chapters 46-47.

Killer of Taarak is Born
This job was also done. Shiv was married to Paarvatee, but still no son was born to Shiv Jee. With a great difficulty then Kaarttikeya was born on the 6th day of Maargsheersh Maas (that day is called "Skand Shashthee"). At the time of birth he had six mouths and had divine weapons of Shakti - Shool and Mahaa Astra, in his hands.

Kaarttikeya was the son of Shiv Jee so he grew fast with a great valor, courage, intelligence, power and strength. Brahmaa Jee Himself performed his Jaat Karm Sanskaar (ceremonies performed at the time of birth of a child). Shiv Jee blessed him to kill the Asur and declared him as the commander of the army of Devtaa. On that day all Devtaa presented him various gifts separately. Soorya Dev gave him a chariot with a speed of thought; Yam Raaj, the Devtaa of Netherworld, gave him Dand; Agni Dev gave him Mahaa Shakti (great power); and Arun gave him Kukkut (cock) bird symbolizing the eternity of time. He rode on peacock. And he along with some other Devtaa started from Kailaash to Shonitpur to kill Taarakaasur.

Meanwhile Twashtaa, the divine architect, built a city near the silver mountain Rajataadri for Kaartikeya. Vishnu enthroned him there and declared him as the protector of the universe. Now Indra sent a messenger to Taarak that if he did not stop his atrocities he should be ready for war. Indra knew that Taarak will not agree for this so He prepared His army with Kaarttikeya as its army chief and started towards Taarak's place.

Taarak thought how come that Indra was showing such a courage? He went up the palace and looked at the horizon from where a great army was coming to his palace. The war started. Indra was defeated by Taarak. Veerbhadra also kept him engaged for a long time. Then Mahaa Vishnu Himself tried His Chakra (divine disc), but failed against Taarak's Shakti. Then Brahmaa Jee ordered Kaarttikeya to kill Taarak as only he could kill Taarak according to His Vardaan to Taarak. But before he could kill Taarak, he had to acquire many powers, companions from all Devtaa. Their description is given in " Balaraam's Teerth Yaatraa - Som Teerth".

Taarak is Killed
So Kaarttikeya forwarded to kill Taarak. Taarak insulted Devtaa to send a baby to fight with him instead of any Indra, Vishnu, Shiv etc Devtaa. Both looked up at Shakti weapon. Once Kaarttikeya fell down with the hit of Taarak but soon he got up and attacked him. Then Taarak fell down, but when he got up this time the whole environment got dull. Kaarttikeya greeted his parents in his mind, and threw his trident into Taarak's chest and killed him.

Thus Taarak was killed by Kaarttikeya - a six-day old boy.



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Created by Sushma Gupta on 5/27/03
Updated on 06/24/13