Brahmanda Purana

It is the eighteenth Purana. It has 1200 verses. Presently available in separate parts. We do not have the full text. Hence we have given the three important ones which we have:

  1. About the Mokshada Ekadasi.
  2. The Lalitopakhyanam about Devi Lalita Tripura Sundari. This also contains the Lalita Sahasranama Stotra and the Lalita Trishati Stotra, both of which are in our Stotras section.
  3. Also included is the The Sons of Sagara section – an interesting story by Rishi Jaimini according to which they dug into the earth to find a horse in Patala loka. A lot of people site this as an example to support the “hollow earth theory”.

This Purana has four parts- Prakriya, Anushanga, Upotaghat and Upasamhar. This Purana is said to be narrated by Sutaji on the bank of the river Drishdvati in Yaksh kshetra (identified with Sutlej in modern Himachal Pradesh). From his narration, it is clear that Sutaji had heard the Purana from Veda Vyasa who, in his turn, received it from Vayudev.

Creation of the universe, determination of Kalpa, differentiation of Yugas, description of Manvantaras, description of Jambudweep and Bharatvarsh, description of Kimpurush. Anudweep, Ketumaal varsh etc. and description of Bharat vansha, Prithu vansha, Dev vansh, Rishi vansh, Agni vansh and preceptors are the main topics of Brahmand Purana. Sages, the dynasties of rulers and the legends of Pitas and their propitiation, the conflict between Karttikeya, King of Hihayas and Bhargava Parasurama.. Subsidiary episodes as that of Sagara, the lineage of Vaivasvata Manu and the dissolution of universe, the ultimate annihilation.

Described in the Purana, Adhyatma Ramayana has seven parts. First part describes the Brahmaswarup (cosmic appearance) of Shri Rama. Incarnation of Lord Rama to relieve the earth from the atrocities of the demons. Baal-leela (childhood plays). Emancipation of Ahilya. Removal of Bhargava’s (Parashuram’s) ego. Second part contains: Lord Rama going into exile. Demise of Dashrath. Aranyakanda describes killing of the illusionary deer and abduction of Sita. Kishkindha khand describes the killing of Baali. Search of Sita. Sundar Khand has the tales of Hanuman’s entry into Lanka. Lanka kanda contains the description of killing of Ravana and coronation of Lord Rama upon his return to Ayodhya. In Uttar Khand reasons for Ravana’s birth have been described. It also contains the

description of Sita?s desertion by Rama. Desertion of Lakshmana. Coronation of Luv and Kush and departure of Rama to his original Vaikunth loka.

Lalitopakhyanam

It is the most important section of this Purana. The narration is written in the form of conversation between Hayagreeva and the sage Agastya. Hayagreeva in this context is a seer. There is a celestial of the same name. Who are they? We get the reply for this also in the text.There is a detailed description in the book establishing the harmonious synthesis of the aspects of the three deities Shiva, Vishnu and the Divine Mother. In the past several devotees used to daily recite Lalitopakhyana, the detailed story of Lalita. This pious story contains the inner meanings of the several technical terms of the spiritual science and the finer aspects of the Mantra Shastra (the science of holy chants). Let us enjoy the feast of nectar by listening to this pious story with deep devotion.

Penance of Agastya. Long ago, the mountain Vindhya (central India) started growing upward in gigantic proportion due to egoism. The sage Agastya decided to subdue the pride of Vindhya. For this purpose, he came from Varanasi (Uttara Pradesh, India) and settled in South India. By the divine presence of the sage Agastya, the entire SouthIndia gradually became prosperous and pious. Eventually the Kali Yuga started (As per the tradition of India, Kali Yuga is the fourth Age, the others being Kruta, Treta and Dvapara). In spite of the severe inspection ofthe sage Agastya, the evil traits of the Kali Yuga started sprouting slowly. Noting this trend, the sage felt sad and proceeded on a pilgrimage. The strange and unrighteous ways of the people made him quite unhappy. There was rampant selfishness and sensuousness prevalent everywhere. ―How can thesepeople attain liberation?‖ – This was his nagging grief. After reaching Kanchi (Tamil Nadu – South India) he was unable to bear the burden of the grief, and performed severe penance meditating on Varadaraja (The Best of the boon givers – a synonym of Vishnu). God‘s ways are mysterious! His power of illusion is incomprehensible! Vishnu appeared to the sage in the form of Hayagreeva.

Agastya asked Hayagreeva ―OhLord! What is the path of salvation to these ignorant people‖?

Hayagreeva replied ―There are two paths for this. They are:

  1. a) After renouncing everything, one can attain the knowledge of the, attributeless aspect of God. This is a very difficult way.
  2. b) The second method is to worship the Divine Mother who is the form of Vishnu with attributes. Even a sinner can do the worship. There is another advantage in this type. The devotee can simultaneously get enjoyment and salvation by following this path‖. Further, Vishnu ordered to the sage Agastya ―You have to propagate this divine secret in the entire world‖.

The sage asked, ―Lord Vishnu! Kindly narrate the story of Para Shakti (The UltimatePower, the Divine Mother) who is your aspect with attributes ‖.

At this stage, Vishnu asked sage Hayagreeva (born with the Lord‘s aspects) to tell the detailed story to Agastya.

“The Divine Mother emanated from meditation of Brahma (the Creator). Her name then was Prakruti (The nature). Mohini Avatara. For the second time, the Divine Mother manifested as Mohini at the time of the churning the ocean by the celestials and the demons (to obtain Amruta-nectar). Let us see how it happened.

Once upon a time, Indra (the Lord of the Heaven was overpowered by the pride of his prosperity. His reverence to even Shiva gradually diminished. Observing this, Shiva asked

the sage Durvasa to meet Indra in the Heaven. The sage started taking the path of Gandharvas (the celestial singers), which was very beautiful. The sage appeared uglier than a beggar. Anyway he proceeded ahead pompously. On the way the sage saw a celestial lady holding a fragrant garland of divine flowers. The ugly looking sage asked the beautiful lady, ―Where did you get this garland‖?

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