SHRIMAD DEVI BHAGAVATAM | BOOK 4 CHAPTER 18
THE FOURTH BOOK
On the Devī Earth’s going to the Heavens
1. Vyāsa said:
O king! Hear in detail the complete life and the deeds in the incarnation of Śrī Kṛṣṇa and also the various wonderful achievements by the Goddess of this universe.
2. Once on a time, the Earth was very much overburdened by the load of wicked kings and She was therefore very much afraid.
3. She then assumed the appearance of a cow and went to the Devaloka crying and very much dejected.
Indra, the lord of the Devas, asked her:
O Vasundhare! What is the cause of your fear now? Who has troubled you? What afflictions are you merged in? Please tell me all these.
4. On hearing Indra’s words, the Earth exclaimed:
O Respected giver! When You have asked me, I am explaining to you the cause of all my afflictions and sorrows; at present I am overburdened with too much load.
5-8. Now Jārāsandha is reigning over the earth, the king of Magadha, a very very vicious person. Thus the other Śiśupāla, the lord of the Chedis, the uncontrollable Kāśīrāj, Rukmī, the powerful Kamsa, the strong Naraka, the Sauvapati Śālva, the wicked Keśī, Dhenuka, and Batsaka all these are now in royal positions.
O Lord of the Devas! These kings are all devoid of the least trace of virtue, quarrelsome against each other, infatuated with vanity, and addicted to vicious deeds.
These have become kings as if they were personified Yamas, the Lords of Death, and are constantly troubling me. I am now unable to carry their loads; where shall I go now?
This great thought is constantly ailing me.
9-11. O Vāsava! What to tell! The Bhagavān in His Boar Incarnation is the cause of all these my afflictions;
O Indra! These present troubles I am fallen into only through Him; for when the cruel Daitya Hiraṇyākṣa; the son of Kaśyapa stole me away and drowned me in the great ocean, then it was Viṣṇu in his Boar incarnation that killed him and rescued me from the ocean and then kept me in this my stable position.
12. Had he not then lifted me up, I would have rested safe in the depths of Rasātala; O Lord of the Devas! Now I am quite unable to bear the load of these vicious persons.
13. O Surendra! The vicious twenty eight Kālī is coming quickly in front. Thinking of His influence, it seems to me that I will be very troubled then and will have to go down to Rasātala.
14. Therefore, O Lord of the Devas! I am bowing down before Your feet, kindly relieve me of my burden and save me from these endless troubles.
15. Indra said:
O Earth! I cannot do anything for you. You better go and take refuge of Brahmā. I am also going to Him. He will remove all your troubles.
16. Hearing Indra’s words the Earth hurriedly went to the realm of Brahmā and Indra and all the other Devas followed Her; and all reached the Brahmāloka.
17-18. O King! The Grand Father Brahmā saw the Earth coming to him and through the power of meditation, found out the cause of Her coming and said:
O Auspicious One! Why are You crying? What troubles You have now? What wicked person has given You troubles.
19. The Earth said:
O Lord of the Earth! The vicious Kali is coming before; under Its influence the subjects will be horribly vicious; therefore I am very much afraid of this Kali.
20. In the beginning of this Kali Yuga, the ancient enemies, the Asuras have now incarnated on this earth as kings. They will be extremely wicked, quarreling against each other, and will be clever in stealing others things. There is no doubt in these.
21. O Grand Father! Now kill these vicious kings and relieve my burden. O Lord! I am very much troubled by the armies of these kings.
22. Brahmā said:
O Goddess! I, too, am unable like Indra to remove your load. Let us go to that Viṣṇu, the Holder of the disc.
23. That Janārdana will remove your burden. I thought of this well before and settled what to do.
24-25. Vyāsa said:
Thus saying, the four faced Brahmā, the Author of the Vedas, rode on His Hamsa Vehicle taking in front the Goddess Earth; and the Devas went to Viṣṇu and began to praise Viṣṇu Janārdana, the Deva of the Devas, with the words of the Vedas with full devotion.
26. Brahmā said:
Thou hast thousand heads, thousand faces, thousand feet. Thou art the Puruṣa of the Vedas, Thou art the Deva of the Devas, and Thou art Eternal.
27. O Omnipresent! Thou art the Past, Present, and Future! O Lord of Lakṣmī! Thou hast awarded immortality unto us.
28. Thou art the Creator of universe, the Preserver and the Destroyer; Thou art the One and the Only goal and thou art the God. Everybody knows that all these glories belong to Thee.
29. Vyāsa said:
O king! When Brahmā praised thus, Viṣṇu whose sign was Garuda, was highly pleased and appeared before Brahmā and the other Devas.
30. The Bhagavān asked them about their welfare and enquired in detail into the cause of their arrival there.
31. Brahmā then bowed down to Him and, remembering the cause of the sorrows of the Goddess Earth, said:
O Lord! Thou art now to relieve the burden of the Earth.
32. O Thou, Ocean of mercy! When the end of the Dvāpara Yuga will come Thou art to incarnate in the world and kill the wicked kings and thus to relieve the burden of the Earth.
33-34. Viṣṇu said:
I am not independent in these matters; why I?
Brahmā Maheśa, Indra, Agni, Yama, Viśvakarma, the Sun and Varuṇa and other Devas, nobody is independent.
This whole universe, moving and unmoving is existing under the control of the Yoga Māyā; and from Brahmā up to the clot of grass, all are strung into the thread of Her Three qualities.
35. O One of good vows! Whatever that Yoga Māyā, the Supreme Goddess, Who is All will, Whose mouth is inward, Who does good at all times, what She wills She does that at any time. You should all know that we are entirely under Her control.
36-41. You better think that were I independent, what for would I have stayed in the great ocean, incarnating in the Fish and Tortoise Bodies!
O Brahmin! What name or pleasure is there in enjoyment in the body of lower animals! What holy merit or any other reward may I expect from being born in the wombs of lower animals? What is the reason that I assume the body of a Boar? Or of a Man-Lion? or of a Dwarf?
Why was I born as the son of Jamadagni? Especially why did I, being born of that high-souled Brāhman Jamadagni, and being the best of the Brāhmins, do the most atrocious act like that of a heartless brute and fill up the lakes with their blood.
Alas! I killed the Kṣattriyas mercilessly; to say nothing more than that I killed the sons that were then in the wombs. If I were independent, what for I would have done these horrible and cruel deeds!
O Lord of the Devas! See again. In my Rāma incarnation I roamed on foot, helpless and without any provision, in the fearful Daṇḍaka forest unfrequented by anybody, wearing clotted hair, bark, rags, like a man who feels no shame, and behaved like a hunter and killed many animals.
42-44. Being under the delusion of Māyā, I could not make out the real nature of the golden deer; consequently leaving Jānakī in the thatched cottage, I went out pursuing the deer.
Though repeatedly warned by me not to leave the place, Lakṣmaṇa was moved by the qualities of Prakriti, forsook her and went out on my search.
45. Then the hypocrite Rāvaṇa, the king of the Rākṣasas, under the garb of a beggar; stole away by force the daughter of Janaka, who had become very lean on account of sorrows.
46. I was very much distressed owing to the separation from my dear wife and roamed about weeping sorely in forest and formed friendship with Sugrīva, under the influence of the circumstances.
47. It was an act of gross injustice on my part to kill Ball, the king of the monkeys. I freed him from his curse; afterwards, aided by the monkeys, I had to go to Lanka.
48. When my younger Lakṣmaṇa and myself were both enchained under the chain of the serpents, Nāgapāśa, and were senseless, the monkeys all were astonished.
49. Then Garuda came and freed us the two brothers, from those Nāgapāśas! I considered then what adverse inauspicious circumstances Fate sometimes ordains on our lot.
50. I lost my kingdom, lived in the forest, my father died, Jānakī was stolen and I had to suffer extreme troubles in very deadly battles; I could not know what worse fate still awaited for us?
51. O Suras! What more calamity can you expect to befall any person than that I was from the very first deprived of my kingdoms and wealth, and had to go to the forest with the princess Sita dwelling in and taking shelter in a dense forest!
52. At the time of my going to the forest my father did not give a single penny; penniless and helpless I had to get out of Ayodhyā on foot.
53. I was compelled to leave my Kṣattriya Dharma and take up the avocation of a hunter and thus to spend fourteen years in forest.
54. After that, under the benign influence of Fate, I was able to kill that Asura Ravana and got the victory in the battle and was able to bring back dear Sītā to Ayodhyā.
55. There I succeeded in becoming the ruler of the kingdom Kośala with its subjects and got the full kingdom and enjoyed for a few years the pleasures of the world.
56-57. The stealing away of Sītā took place at the first outset; next I got my kingdom; then the subjects began to circulate the bad name regarding Jānakī; and I being afraid of that, deported her into exile in the forest.
At that time I had to suffer again extreme pain and agony due to the separation from my wife. Then the daughter of the Goddess Earth penetrated into the Earth and got down to the Pātāla.
58. O Devas! When I had to depend on Fate and to suffer so many troubles incessantly, where else can you dare to say that an independent man exists.
59. Afterwards under the influence of Time, I had to go to Heaven with my brothers. Let all this point to what it may, the intelligent learned people can say what an amount of mishaps takes place to one who is dependent!
60. O One born from the Lotus! You hear my word; I am in every way dependent; why I? Rudra, You and all those Suras are fully dependent.
Here ends the Eighteenth Chapter of the Fourth Book of the Mahā Purāṇam Śrīmad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Mahāṛṣi Veda Vyāsa on the Devī Earth’s going to the Heavens.