Killing of andhaka

Having bowed to the one whose odd eye roasts the universe at the end of the kalpa we narrate his awful exploits.

When rudra and umA were sporting on the eastern ridges of the mandhara, umA closed the eyes of one who simply known as the god because even his name can terrify the uninitiated. When his eyes were closed by umA’s hand which had the complexion of coral and a golden lotus the universe turned exceedingly dark, for after all he is soma-sUryAgni-lochana. umA’s hands heated by his eye on the forehead began to sweat copiously and resulted in divine conception due to contact with the god. A terrifying being manifested itself. It was blind, deformed, and black in complexion, with matted locks of hair on the head and fine down all over the body. It sang and laughed horribly, danced and put out its tongue like a serpent and roared fiercely. haimavatI aghast at the sight asked what it was. rudra said, you made it yourself by closing my eyes. She took her hands of his eyes and as the light came back the being looked even more hideous. rudra said: this awful being is andhaka, the blind one, who was born when you closed my eyes. Take care of him well as he is an object of our creation.

The daitya hirANyAkSha did not have a son and was performing austerities to gain one. shiva the granter of boons gave him andhaka to become his son. Thereafter in the clash between the demons and devas viShNu in the form of the terrible varAha and nR^isiMha slew hirANyAkSha and his brother hiraNyakashipu. There upon prahlAda the mighty son of hiraNyakashipu took over the lordship of the daityas and made fun of andhaka as the blind and ugly one. Then andhaka performed a terrible rite where he offered all his flesh and blood to brahmA. Finally, when he was to offer himself as an oblation he received a boon of invincibility from brahmA, except under the condition where he will covet the most excellent epitome of the female kind. This it was said would bring his destruction. andhaka having gained eyes and beauty in addition came back and was declared lord of the asuras with the mighty prahlAda becoming subservient to him. He conquered the universe and tormented the gods. He acquired thousands of beautiful women from the realms of the asuras, pR^ithivi and the heavens. He engaged in intercourse with them on the beautiful banks of the rivers, mountains and other places, drank divine beverages along with them. He thus enjoyed time in magic mansions erected for him by the asura maya. He attacked leading Brahmins with fallacious arguments and derided vedic learning. He went around with his other daitya friends like the anindra prahlAda destroying vedic rites. He built himself a large city in the mandhAra mountains and settled there with his dAnavas and daityas. His three ministers duryodhana, vighasa and hasti, saw the most beautiful woman in the company of a terrible being. He had serpents all around his body. He had a necklace of skulls and had a digit of the moon on his matted locks. He had a trident in his hand and was a great archer with a terrible bow and quiver full of deadly arrows. He had a terrible sword, and his body was smeared with ashes and he wore vestures of elephant and tiger hides. The elegantly dressed young epitome of the female kind was his companion and was embracing him. They were served by an ape-faced attendant of exceedingly terrible face and demeanor, who also held awful weapons in his rough and brawny arms.

andhaka smitten by passion asked his ministers to go and ask that ascetic to give up his wife to him. The asuras duly went to shiva and asked him who he was and ordered him to hand over his wife to them. rudra said that he neither new his parentage nor remembered his origins and said that the asuras may come and take what they wanted if they were able to fight him or his gaNa vIraka. Furious, andhaka went to seize pArvatI but was obstructed by vIraka who showered on him stones, trees, fire and serpents. The asura dispersing these weapons rushed at vIraka with his sword. vIraka shattered it to pieces and put andhaka to flight. He also beat back prahlAda, bhaji and cut kujambha to two pieces.

rudra then told pArvatI that he had to leave to perform the mahApAshupata vrata because he had that regain his energies lost the due the sexual dalliance with umA during the generation of skanda and vinAyaka. He asked umA to stay within their cave with their attendant vIraka serving as the guard outside. andhaka avenge his defeat returned with a terrible daitya army and pounced on vIraka. They fought a terrible combat for 500 days on end, using swords, shakti-s, paTTishis, and maces, shooting numerous arrows like ardhachandrabha-s, kUrma-mukhas, vatsadantas, hurling axes and iron balls. vIraka overwhelmed by the asura’s weapons was buried within them. umA at that point called the other gods to her aid. To aid her, their shaktis went forth to fight the daityas: the frightful goddesses like brAhmI with a rod, vaiShNavI with her usual weapons, indrANI of a thousand eyes, vAruNI, kauberI of hideous form and 100s of other goddesses came for to fight along with them. vIraka in the meantime regained consciousness and along with the goddess attacked the asuras. gaurI too joined the fight with the goddess and just then they saw shiva arrive from his vrata. The goddesses delighted at his fought fiercely and attacked the frontline division of the asuras who were commanded by gila. The asura routed by the goddesses retreated in disarray. pArvatI then sent the goddesses back and honored vIraka with hundreds of gifts.

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