rule



 

Canto 5

Pañca Tattv




Chapter 3: Rishabhadeva's Appearance in the Womb of Merudevî, the Wife of King Nâbhi 

(1) S'rî S'uka said: 'Nâbhi, the son of Âgnîdhra, desiring to have sons with Merudevî who had not given birth to any children yet, offered together with her with great attention prayers in worship of the Supreme Lord Vishnu, the enjoyer of all sacrifices. (2) While he with great faith and devotion and a pure mind was of worship, the Supreme Lord out of His love to fulfill the desires of His devotees, manifested Himself in His most beautiful, unconquerable form pleasing to the mind and eyes. He saw Him with all of His captivating, beautiful limbs, even though that [normally] cannot be achieved merely by the means for performing the pravargya ceremony he was engaged in: the place and time, hymns, priests, gifts to the priests and the regulative principles. (3) When He manifested Himself very brightly in His four-handed form as the topmost of all living beings, in a yellow silk garment and with the beauty of the S'rîvatsa mark on His chest, His conch shell, lotus flower, disc, flower garland, the Kaustubha jewel and His club that characterize Him, He, radiating brilliantly with His helmet, earrings, bracelets, girdle, necklace, armlets, ankle bells etc. that ornamented His body, made king Nâbhi, the priests and the others feel like poor people who had obtained a great treasure. Thereupon they, with great regard and all paraphernalia of worship, reverentially bent their heads. (4-5) The priests said: 'Please, oh Most Exalted One, accept the repeated offerings of respect of our worship. By that worship we, Your servants, are able to act, provided we follow the instructions of the exalted souls. Anyone not in control of his mind because of completely being absorbed by the fickleness of natural phenomena [the gunas], can acquire knowledge of the names, forms and qualities that belong to the position in this world of You, the Supreme Lord above and beyond the influence of the material world! But, by most auspiciously expressing in words the excellence of Your transcendental qualities that wipe out all the sinful actions of mankind, we can only partly know You. A Vishnu to worship(6) You are most pleased, oh Supreme Lord, by Your servants who in great ecstasy do their prayers with faltering voices and perform their worship with water, fresh twigs of green, tulasî leaves and sprouts of grass. (7) We do not see of what use it otherwise would be for Your sake to be encumbered with performing sacrifices and all the articles of worship. (8) You as the direct, self-sufficient embodiment of the civil virtues [the purushârthas] are of an endless and unlimited constant increase, oh Lord, but our desire for this blessing of You, can only be there for the purpose of obtaining Your grace. (9) Even though You personally wish to open up, with Your causeless and inexhaustible mercy and glory, the path of liberation [called apavarga], and for that purpose have come here and are present for any ordinary man to see, we fail in our worship unto You. For we, oh Lord of Lords, are but fools unaware of Your ultimate welfare. (10) This before the eyes of Your devotees appearing of You here in this sacrifice of King Nâbhi, oh Best of the Benefactors, really constitutes the greatest blessing, oh most worshipable one. (11) To those sages of whom strengthened by detachment countless impurities were removed by the fire of knowledge, to those sages satisfied within who attained Your qualities by incessantly reiterating Your stories and discussing Your many attributes, You [being present in person] are the highest blessing to achieve. (12) When we happen to stumble and fall down, suffer hunger, are bored, find ourselves in an awkward position and such or when we have a fever or lie on our deathbed and thus are not capable of remembering You, then let it be so that Your names, activities and qualities are discussed that have the potency to drive away all our sins. (13) Moreover this pious king [Nâbhi] nevertheless aspires to be blessed by You with offspring, a son whom he hopes to be exactly like You: a supreme controller of the benedictions of heaven and the path leading there. With the notion of children as the ultimate goal of life asking this in worship of You, he thus behaves like a poor man who asks a wealthy person willing to donate for a bit of grain! (14) Who, failing to respect the feet of the great souls, is in this world of Yours not defeated by the unconquerable illusory energy [of mâyâ] because of which one cannot find one's path? Whose intelligence would not be bewildered by all the sensual pleasure that works like poison? Whose nature is not checked by that stream [that chain of consequences]? (15) Please excuse us in Your [divine indifference of] sameness with each and all, for having invited You again in this arena of sacrifice as the performer of many wonders, please tolerate us ignorant souls who, less intelligent being of disrespect for the divinity of You as the God of Gods, are aspiring a material outcome.'

(16) S'rî S'uka said: 'After the Supreme Lord, the leader of the sages, with this speech had been worshiped by the preservers of the realm [the priests of Nâbhi] bowed down at His feet, He kindly addressed them. (17) The Supreme Lord said: 'Alas, pleased as I am by you, oh sages whose words are all true, the benediction you were asking for that there may be a son of Nâbhi alike Me, is a thing most difficult to achieve. Being One without a second there cannot exist anyone else equal to Me. But the words of you brahmins cannot prove to be false [either], for the class of the brahmins represents My mouth. (18) Because there is no one to be found equal to Me, I shall, by personally expanding into a plenary portion of Myself, descend in [Merudevî,] the wife of Âgnîdhra's son.'

(19) S'rî S'uka said: 'After He thus, with her being present, had spoken to the husband of Merudevî, the Supreme Lord disappeared. (20) Oh grace of Vishnu [Parîkchit], in order to please King Nâbhi the Supreme Lord, who in this sacrificial arena was propitiated by the best of the sages, then appeared in his wife Merudevî. He manifested in His original avatâra form of pure goodness with the desire to show the sages of renunciation - who barely clothe themselves, lead an ascetic life and are of a continuous celibacy - the way to practice the dharma [the righteousness, the religion, the true nature].'

 

 

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Third revised edition, loaded February 11, 2018.
 

 

 

Previous Aadhar edition and Vedabase links:

Text 1

S'rî S'uka said: 'Nâbhi, the son of Âgnîdhra, desiring to have sons with Merudevî who had not given birth to any children yet, offered together with her with great attention prayers in worship of the Supreme Lord Vishnu, the enjoyer of all sacrifices.

S'rî S'uka said: 'Nâbhi, the son of Âgnîdhra, desiring to have sons with Merudevî who was childless, with great attention offered prayers in worship of the Supreme Lord Vishnu, the enjoyer of all sacrifices.  (Vedabase)

 

Text 2

While he with great faith and devotion and a pure mind was of worship, the Supreme Lord out of His love to fulfill the desires of His devotees, manifested Himself in His most beautiful, unconquerable form pleasing to the mind and eyes. He saw Him with all of His captivating, beautiful limbs, even though that [normally] cannot be achieved merely by the means for performing the pravargya ceremony he was engaged in: the place and time, hymns, priests, gifts to the priests and the regulative principles.

When he assuredly with great faith and devotion and a pure mind was worshiping, manifested the Supreme Lord out of His love to fulfill the desires of His devotees, Himself in His most beautiful, unconquerable form that is pleasing to the mind and eyes with its captivating beautiful limbs, although that could not be achieved with the introductory pravargya ceremony as was initiated, and the ingredients, the right place and time, the hymns, the priests, the gifts to the priests and by means of the regulative principles themselves. (Vedabase)

 

Text 3

When He manifested Himself very brightly in His four-handed form as the topmost of all living beings, in a yellow silk garment and with the beauty of the S'rîvatsa mark on His chest, His conch shell, lotus flower, disc, flower garland, the Kaustubha jewel and His club that characterize Him, He, radiating brilliantly with His helmet, earrings, bracelets, girdle, necklace, armlets, ankle bells etc. that ornamented His body, made king Nâbhi, the priests and the others feel like poor people who had obtained a great treasure. Thereupon they, with great regard and all paraphernalia of worship, reverentially bent their heads.

After He manifested Himself most obviously in His four-handed form very bright, as the topmost of all living beings, with a yellow silk garment and the beauty of the S'rîvatsa mark He has on His chest, His conchshell, lotus flower, disc, flower garland, the Kaustubha-jewel and His club and such as are characteristic for Him, and radiating brilliantly with the helmet, earrings, bracelets, girdle, necklace, armlets, ankle bells etc. that ornamented His body, felt king Nâbhi, the priests and the others themselves like poor people having obtained a great treasure and with great regards and everything of worship they reverentially bent their heads. (Vedabase)

 

Text 4-5

The priests said: 'Please, oh Most Exalted One, accept the repeated offerings of respect of our worship. By that worship we, Your servants, are able to act, provided we follow the instructions of the exalted souls. Anyone not in control of his mind because of completely being absorbed by the fickleness of natural phenomena [the gunas], can acquire knowledge of the names, forms and qualities that belong to the position in this world of You, the Supreme Lord above and beyond the influence of the material world! But, by most auspiciously expressing in words the excellence of Your transcendental qualities that wipe out all the sinful actions of mankind, we can only partly know You.

The priests said: 'Please accept again and again, o most exalted one, the offering in worship of our respects, the obeisances of us, Your servants. Thus we are able to act thus far being instructed by the exalted ones; what man, whose mind not in the least capable is absorbed in the transformations of material nature, is capable of ascertaining, of the Supreme Controller above the influence of the material world, all the names, forms and qualities belonging to His position here! By most auspiciously speaking of the excellence of Your transcendental qualities, which wipe out all the sinful actions of mankind, we may know You but partially. (Vedabase)

Text 6

You are most pleased, oh Supreme Lord, by Your servants who in great ecstasy do their prayers with faltering voices and perform their worship with water, fresh twigs of green, tulasî leaves and sprouts of grass.

It is by the worship indeed of Your servants, who in great ecstasy with faltering voices do their prayers, performing with water, fresh twigs of green, tulasî leaves and sprouts of grass, that You become satisfied. (Vedabase)

 

Text 7

We do not see of what use it otherwise would be for Your sake to be encumbered with performing sacrifices and all the articles of worship.

Everything else of all the concern here about the things of use required in this, we acknowledge, is because of Your greatness not even needed. (Vedabase)


Text 8

You as the direct, self-sufficient embodiment of the civil virtues [the purushârthas] are of an endless and unlimited constant increase, oh Lord, but our desire for this blessing of You, can only be there for the purpose of obtaining Your grace.

All the spiritual virtues - Your actual identity - self-sufficiently, undoubtedly at every moment, directly and without ever stopping do increase endlessly; but, o Lord, the always desiring of us in this for the blessings of material pleasure, may only exist for the purpose of obtaining Your grace. (Vedabase)

 

Text 9

Even though You personally wish to open up, with Your causeless and inexhaustible mercy and glory, the path of liberation [called apavarga], and for that purpose have come here and are present for any ordinary man to see, we fail in our worship unto You. For we, oh Lord of Lords, are but fools unaware of Your ultimate welfare.

Although You, personally, by the abundance of Your causeless mercy and glory desiring to lay open the spiritual path [called apavarga], have come here and are presently seen like one can see any ordinary person, do we fall short in our worship for You for we, o Lord of lords, are as fools ignorant about that ultimate welfare of You. (Vedabase)


Text 10

This before the eyes of Your devotees appearing of You here in this sacrifice of King Nâbhi, oh Best of the Benefactors, really constitutes the greatest blessing, oh most worshipable one.

This then, because of in this sacrifice of the saintly king Nâbhi having become, o Lordship, o best of the benefactors, the object of the vision of us Your devotees, is no doubt the greatest benediction indeed, o most worshipable One. (Vedabase)


Text 11

To those sages of whom strengthened by detachment countless impurities were removed by the fire of knowledge, to those sages satisfied within who attained Your qualities by incessantly reiterating Your stories and discussing Your many attributes, You [being present in person] are the highest blessing to achieve.

You are to them, of whom the endless impurity, having attained Your qualities, has been removed by the strength of detachment and the fire of knowledge, You are to those sages who self-satisfied, incessantly recounted all the good of You in telling Your stories, the supreme bliss produced. (Vedabase)


Text 12

When we happen to stumble and fall down, suffer hunger, are bored, find ourselves in an awkward position and such or when we have a fever or lie on our deathbed and thus are not capable of remembering You, then let it be so that Your names, activities and qualities are discussed that have the potency to drive away all our sins.

Still we somehow or other stumble along, hungrily fall down and yawn because of feeling misplaced and so on, and also are we of ourselves unable to remember You in the fever of our deathstruggle; may it be possible that we utter Your names and speak of Your activities and attributes, for they have the potency to drive away all our sins. (Vedabase)


Text 13

Moreover this pious king [Nâbhi] nevertheless aspires to be blessed by You with offspring, a son whom he hopes to be exactly like You: a supreme controller of the benedictions of heaven and the path leading there. With the notion of children as the ultimate goal of life asking this in worship of You, he thus behaves like a poor man who asks a wealthy person willing to donate for a bit of grain!

Moreover aspires this pious king to be blessed by You with offspring, a son that he hopes to be exactly like You: a supreme controller of the benedictions of heaven and the path leading there; even though this king with You, the great love of the worship, with his idea of children as the ultimate goal of life, behaves like a poor man who asks a person of wealth and charity for a little grain. (Vedabase)

 

Text 14

Who, failing to respect the feet of the great souls, is in this world of Yours not defeated by the unconquerable illusory energy [of mâyâ] because of which one cannot find one's path? Whose intelligence would not be bewildered by all the sensual pleasure that works like poison? Whose nature is not checked by that stream [that chain of consequences]?

Who, without respect for the feet of the great ones, is within this world of Yours not conquered by the unconquerable illusory energy of which one cannot find the path; who is in his intelligence not bewildered by the material enjoyment that is like poison; who is in his nature not checked by that stream? (Vedabase)

 

Text 15

Please excuse us in Your [divine indifference  of] sameness with each and all, for having invited You again in this arena of sacrifice as the performer of many wonders. Please tolerate us ignorant souls who, less intelligent being of disrespect for the divinity of You as the God of Gods, are aspiring a material outcome.'

Because of indeed Your again being invited in this arena of sacrifice as the performer of many wonders - please tolerate out of Your sameness to all and everything therefore us, the ignorant ones, who, not very intelligent of disrespect for the divinity of You as the God of Gods, are aspiring a material outcome.' (Vedabase)

 

Text 16

S'rî S'uka said: 'After the Supreme Lord, the leader of the sages, with this speech had been worshiped by the preservers of the realm [the priests of Nâbhi] bowed down at His feet, He kindly addressed them.

S'rî S'uka said: 'The Supreme Lord, the lead of the wise, thus extolled by the unbound recitation performed by them to whose feet even the emperor of Bhâratavarsha [India] bowed down, then spoke. (Vedabase)
 
Text 17

The Supreme Lord said: 'Alas, pleased as I am by you, oh sages whose words are all true, the benediction you were asking for that there may be a son of Nâbhi alike Me, is a thing most difficult to achieve. Being One without a second there cannot exist anyone else equal to Me. But the words of you brahmins cannot prove to be false [either], for the class of the brahmins represents My mouth.

The Supreme Lord said: 'Alas, pleased as I am by you o sages whose words are all true, is that benediction you have been asking for - that there may be a son of Nâbhi that is like Me -, a thing most difficult to achieve; being One without a second am I the only one equal to Me, but nevertheless, with the brahminical of what you said not being false, ought that of Me to come true, for it was voiced by the divinity of the class of the twice-born. (Vedabase)

 

Text 18

Because there is no one to be found equal to Me, I shall, by personally expanding into a plenary portion of Myself, descend in [Merudevî,] the wife of Âgnîdhra's son.'

Since there's no one equal to Me to be found, shall I therefore by personal expansion into a plenary portion of Myself, advent in the wife of Âgnîdhra's son.' (Vedabase)

 

Text 19

S'rî S'uka said: 'After He thus, with her being present, had spoken to the husband of Merudevî, the Supreme Lord disappeared.

S'rî S'uka said: 'Thus having spoken to the husband in the presence of Merudevî, disappeared the Supreme Lord. (Vedabase)

Text 20

Oh grace of Vishnu [Parîkchit], in order to please King Nâbhi the Supreme Lord, who in this sacrificial arena was propitiated by the best of the sages, then appeared in his wife Merudevî. He manifested in His original avatâra form of pure goodness  with the desire to show the sages of renunciation - who barely clothe themselves, lead an ascetic life and are of a continuous celibacy - the way to practice the dharma [the righteousness, the religion, the true nature].'

O grace of Vishnu [Parîkchit], in order to please King Nâbhi did the Supreme Lord, this way being propitiated by the best of the wise, appear in the original form of pure goodness of an avatâra in his wife Merudevî, in a desire to show the great of the renounced, the withdrawn and the studious order [the sannyâsîs, the vânaprasthas and the brahmacârîs] the ways of the principles of dharma [righteousness, the religion, the true nature]. (Vedabase)


 

 

 

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The text and audio are offered under the conditions of the
Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.

The painting is titled:'Devotion to the tulsi plant, sweet basil. A lady ascetic.'
Rajput, 18th C.. Source: British Museum.
Production:
Filognostic Association of The Order of Time.


  

 

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