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12-Varaah Puraan

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4-Tithi

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4-Tithi

1. Pratipadaa - Agni
When Lord Agni manifested himself from Brahmaa's anger, he requested Brahmaa to assign an auspicious day to him for his worship. Brahmaa said - "Since you have manifested first of all the deities, therefore the first day - Pratipadaa will be reserved for your worship. One who performs Havan on Pratipadaa would be blessed."

2. Dwiteeyaa - Ashwinee Kumaar
King Prajaapaal requested sage Mahaatap to describe how both the Ashwinee Kumaar manifested themselves. Sage Mahaatap narrated the following tale to him Sage Mareechi was Brahmaa's son while sage Kashyap was Mareechi's son. All the 12 Aaditya are the sons of sage Kashyap. (Other than our Sun God there are 11 more Aaditya - or each month one Aaditya appear in sky). One of the Aaditya - Maartand was married to Vishwakarmaa's daughter whose name was Sangyaa. Maartand had two children from her and their names were - Yam and Yamee. Being unable to bear the extreme radiance of Maartand, Sangyaa created her shadow identity and after instructing her to serve her husband Maartand in best possible ways, she herself went to live at Uttar Kuru.

Later on, when Maartand came to know about the reality, he went to Uttar Kuru and found Sangyaa in the form of a mare. He then changed his own form and became a horse. Both of them stayed there for a long time. In course of time, Sangyaa gave birth to two sons who became famous as Ashwinee Kumaar." Maartand instructed both his sons to please Brahmaa with their devotion. Both of them engaged themselves in austere penance. Finally, Brahmaa appeared before them and blessed them by saying - "Your good-looks and knowledge of Aayur Ved will be unmatched in the world." It was 'Dwiteeyaa' (second day) when Brahmaa blessed them, that is why this particular day is attached with the worship of Ashwinee Kumaar."

3. Triteeyaa - Goddess Paarvatee
King Prajaapaal asked sage Mahaatap about the reason why goddess Gauree - the epithet of power, had to take incarnation. Sage Mahaatap replied - "Gauree manifested from Lord Naaraayan and was offered to Rudra as his consort by Brahmaa. Brahmaa then instructed Rudra to begin creation but Rudra being free from all kinds of worldly attachment refused to oblige Brahmaa and engaged himself in austere penance. Gauree then merged her identity with Brahmaa,. Then Brahmaa created his seven 'Maanas-Putra'. In course of time, Gauree was born as the daughter of Daksh Prajaapati and hence came to be known as 'Dakshayaanee'.

Once, Daksh Prajaapati organized a grand Yagya in which all the seven Maanas Putra were assigned specific responsibilities. Meanwhile, Rudra came out from his meditation and was extremely furious to see the earth occupied by countless creatures. He thought - "Brahmaa had requested me to create then who is responsible for all these creation? Who has dared to transgress my authority?" As Rudra stood wondering, suddenly he heard the sound of the Mantra being chanted at the Yagya performed by Daksh.

Now, Rudra's fury crossed all limits resulting into the emergence of numerous spirits and ghosts from his ears. He then went to the oblation site accompanied by the ghosts and started destroying it. Vishnu tried to protest this destruction as a result of which a fierce battle was fought between both of them (Vishnu and Rudra). It was only on Lord Brahmaa's intervention that both of them stopped fighting. Brahmaa said - "From now onwards Rudra would become famous as 'Har' while Vishnu would be known as 'Hari'. He then directed the deities to eulogize Rudra and give his due share of the Yagya being performed by Daksh Prajaapati." Rudra became pleased by deity's eulogy and blessed them. This way, Daksh Prajaapati was able to accomplish his Yagya with the blessings of Rudra .In course of time; Rudra married Gauree - the daughter of Daksh Prajaapati.

Once, Gauree went to her father's place to attend a Yagya ceremony against the wish of her husband (it wass another Yagya). On seeing her, Daksh Prajaapati started cursing Rudra. Gauree was so enraged by her father's attitude that she gave up her life by jumping into the sacrificial fire meant for the Yagya. Later on, she took rebirth as Paarvatee - the daughter of Himaalaya. Paarvatee did an austere penance to get Shiv as her husband. Ultimately her desire was fulfilled and she became the consort of Shiv.

The Tithi of Triteeyaa is very deeply attached with the worship of Paarvatee because all the important events of her life (birth, marriage, etc) took place on this day. This is the reason why Triteeyaa is attributed to the worship of Paarvatee. A woman who observes a fast on this day enjoys a blissful married life. One important ritual related with the austerity of Triteeyaa is avoiding the usage of salt on this day.

4. Chaturthee - Ganapati Day
King Prajaapaal then asked sage Mahaatap about the manifestation of Ganapati and about the significance of Chaturthee in terms of Ganapati's worship. Mahaatap narrated the following tale - "Once, all the deities went to seek Shiv's help in sorting out a peculiar problem they faced with - they experienced all sorts of hurdles and problems in their work resulting into repeated failures. But the demons on the contrary accomplished all their work successfully without any problem. When Shiv learnt about their problem, he burst into laughter. Hardly had he stopped laughing that a radiant adolescent manifested himself from his opened mouth.

The child was so divinely charming that Paarvatee, who was sitting beside Shiv, looked at him without dropping her eyelids. When Shiv found her staring at the child he became angry. Shiv said to the child - "From now onwards your face will resemble an elephant and your belly will become large as a pot. In the name of Yagyopaveet you would have nothing but a snake hanging across your shoulder." This child was none other than Ganesh. Shiv's anger did not subside even after having cursed Ganesh. He was still trembling in anger and was sweating profusely. Numerous Ganesh manifested themselves from those sweat-drops and each of them had a head of an elephant as well as a large belly. Suddenly, Brahmaa appeared and requested Shiv by saying - "You should make this child, who has manifested from your mouth, as a Divine child - the Lord of all these Vinaayak. Thus, Shiv made Ganesh the Lord of all the Vinaayak and blessed him - "You will be the first deity to get worshipped in any ritual.

Chaturthee has deep association with the worship of Ganesh, as it was on this very day that he had manifested himself. Having Prasaad, prepared from sesame seeds and worshipping him on this day is believed to bring great auspiciousness to the person as well as his family. A devotee who worships Ganesh on Chaturthee never experiences any kind of obstacle in his work.

5. Panchamee - Naag Devtaa
King Prajaapaal then requested sage Mahaatap to shed light on the origin of the serpents and the significance of Panchamee. Sage Mahaatap replied - "The serpents came from the lineage of Kashyap - with his wife Kadroo. Sage Kashyap had numerous progeny from Kadroo - Vasuki, Anant, Kambal, Karkotak, Padm, Mahaapadm, Shankh, Kulik, etc. When all these serpents started tormenting human-beings, Brahmaa cursed them that they would be annihilated during Swaayambhuv Manvantar due to the curse of their own mother. The serpents became terrified and promised to mend their ways. They then requested Brahmaa to give them a place to live in. Brahmaa instructed them to go to three different netherworlds - Sutal, Vital and Paataal. He also warned them that during Vaivaswat Manvantar King Janmejaya would perform a grand Yagya with the objective of destroying the wicked serpents but the virtuous among them would manage to survive. This particular incident occurred on Panchamee and hence it became the destroyer of all sins. A devotee who worships Naag (serpent) on this day and offers milk will never be troubled by them.

6. Shashthee - Kaarttikeya
Describing Kaarttikeya's manifestation and how his worship got associated with the auspicious day of Shashthee, sage Mahaatap told king Prajaapaal - "Once there occurred a fierce battle between the deities and demons in which the deities got defeated. The reason behind their defeat was the absence of an able commander who could lead them. The deities went to seek the help of Brahmaa and, Brahma took the deities to Shiv. Shiv invoked Shakti present within his body and thus manifested Kaarttikeya. He was named after the six Krittikaa who had nurtured Kaarttikeya while he was the infant and then appointed him the commander of the deities on the auspicious day of Shashthee. Under his able leadership ,the deities finally managed to defeat the demons. A devotee who worships lord Kaarttikeya on Shashtheei enjoys prosperity and gets all his desire fulfilled. A childless couple must worship on this auspicious day to get blessed with a son.

7. Saptamee - Aaditya
King Prajaapaal asked sage Mahaatap about the creation of Soorya from divine radiance. Sage Mahaatap replied - "When the almighty God willed to manifest himself in other tangible forms, effulgence emanated from his being resulting into the creation of Soorya. The whole world became illumined with Soorya's radiance and all the deities dwelling within the body of Almighty God expressed their gratitude. Initially, unbearable heat emanated from Soorya, causing great uncomforted to the deities but later on Almighty God reduced it to bearable limit at the request of the deities. Soorya had manifested himself on the auspicious day of Saptamee hence this particular day became deeply associated with the worship of Soorya.

8. Ashtamee - Asht Maatrikaa
Continuing with his narration, sage Mahaatap said - "During ancient times, there lived a mighty demon named Andhakaasur. Andhakaasur had become arrogant because of a boon of immortality received from Brahmaa. Being tormented by Andhakaasur, all the deities went to seek Brahma's help and in turn Brahmaa took the deities to Shiv who agreed to kill the wicked demon Andhakaasur. The battle commenced and a fierce duel broke in between Shiv and Andhakaasur. Shiv attacked Andhakaasur with his trident. Stream of blood oozed out from the wound, but to Shiv's utter amazement each drop of blood falling on the ground resulted in into the creation of numerous Andhakaasur. In a short time the battle field was overcrowded with countless Andhakaasur.

Now, Shiv's anger crossed all limits and he thundered loudly. Flames emanated from the mouth of enraged Shiv resulting into the manifestation of goddess Yogeeshwaree. Similarly, seven more goddesses manifested themselves from different deities - Vaishnavee from Vishnu, Braahmee from Brahmaa, Kaumaaree from Kaarttikeya, Mahendree from Indra, Yamee from Yam, Varaahee from Varaah and Maheshwaree from Naaraayan. All these eight goddesses came to be known as Maatrikaa and the Lord assigned them the auspicious day for their worship. A devotee who worships these eight Maatrikaa on Ashtamee is blessed.

 

 

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Created by Sushma Gupta on 3/15/05
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Updated on 04/23/13