Meru

Created by Jijith Nadumuri at 24 Jul 2011 14:28 and updated at 24 Jul 2011 14:28

VISHNU PURANA NOUN

vp.1.2 excellent natural abode of Vishnu in the form of Brahma; and there Vishnu, the lord of the universe, whose essence is inscrutable, assumed a perceptible form, and even he himself abided in it in the character of Brahma 31. Its womb, vast as the mountain Meru, was composed of the mountains; and the mighty oceans were the waters that filled its cavity. In that egg, O Brahman, were the continents and seas and mountains, the planets and divisions of the universe, the gods, the demons, and mankind. And this egg was externally invested by seven natural envelopes, or by water, air, fire, ether, and Ahankara the origin of the elements, each tenfold the extent of that which it invested; next came the principle of Intelligence; and, finally, the whole was surrounded by the indiscrete Principle: resembling thus the cocoa nut, filled interiorly with pulp, and exteriorly covered by husk and rind.
vp.1.8 "There was formerly a peak of Meru, named Savitra, abounding with gems, radiant as the sun, and celebrated throughout the three worlds;
vp.1.8 flames streamed from his hair; a necklace of pearls wound round his neck; a garland of flame descended on his breast: radiant with lustre, he looked like the final fire that consumes the world. Four tremendous tusks projected from a mouth which extended from ear to ear: he was of vast bulk, vast strength, a mighty male and lord, the destroyer of the universe, and like a large fig tree in circumference; shining like a hundred moons at once; fierce as the fire of love; having four heads, sharp white teeth, and of mighty fierceness, vigour, activity, and courage; glowing with the blaze of a thousand fiery suns at the end of the world; like a thousand undimmed moons: in bulk like Himadri, Kailasa, or Meru, or Mandara, with all its gleaming herbs; bright as the sun of destruction at the end of ages; of irresistible prowess, and beautiful aspect; irascible, with lowering eyes, and a countenance burning like fire; clothed in the hide of the elephant and lion, and girt round with snakes; wearing a turban on his head, a moon on his brow; sometimes savage, sometimes mild; having a chaplet of many flowers on his head, anointed with various unguents, and adorned with different ornaments and many sorts of jewels; wearing a garland of heavenly Karnikara flowers, and rolling his eyes with rage. Sometimes he danced; sometimes he laughed aloud; sometimes he stood wrapt in meditation; sometimes he trampled upon the earth; sometimes he sang; sometimes he wept repeatedly: and he was endowed
vp.1.10 Parasara. Lakshmi, the bride of Vishnu, was the daughter of Bhrigu by Khyati. They had also two sons, Dhatri and Vidhatri, who married the two daughters of the illustrious Meru, ayati and Niryati; and had by them each a son, named Prana and Mrikanda. The son of the latter was Markandeya, from whom Vedasiras was born 1. The son of Prana was named Dyutimat, and his son was Rajavat; after whom, the race of Bhrigu became infinitely multiplied.
vp.2.1 [paragraph continues] Nishadha. The region in the centre of which mount Meru is situated he conferred on Ilavrita; and to Ramya, the countries lying between it and the Nila mountain. To Hiranvat his father gave the country lying to the north of it, called sweta; and, on the north of the sweta mountains, the country bounded by the sringavan range he gave to Kuru. The countries on the east of Meru he assigned to Bhadraswa; and Gandhamadana, which lay west of it, he gave to Ketumala 5. Having installed his sons sovereigns in these several regions, the pious king Agnidhra retired to a life of penance at the holy place of pilgrimage, salagrama 6.
vp.2.1 Nabhi, who had for his portion the country of Himahwa, had by his queen Meru the magnanimous Rishabha; and he had a hundred sons, the eldest of whom was Bharata. Rishabha having ruled with equity and wisdom, and celebrated many sacrificial rites, resigned the sovereignty of the earth to the heroic Bharata, and, retiring to the hermitage of Pulastya, adopted the life of an anchoret, practising religious penance, and performing all prescribed ceremonies, until, emaciated by his austerities, so as to be but a collection of skin and fibres, he put a pebble in his mouth, and naked went the way of all flesh 7. The country was
vp.2.2 Description of the earth. The seven Dwipas and seven seas. Jambu dwipa. Mount Meru: its extent and boundaries. Extent of Ilavrita. Groves, lakes, and branches of Meru. Cities of the gods. Rivers. The forms of Vishnu worshipped in different Varshas.
vp.2.2 Jambu dwipa is in the centre of all these: and in the centre of this continent is the golden mountain Meru. The height of Meru is eighty four thousand Yojanas; and its depth below the surface of the earth is
vp.2.2 The boundary mountains (of the earth) are Himavan, Hemakuta, and Nishadha, which lie south of Meru; and Nila, sweta, and sringi, which are situated to the north of it. The two central ranges (those next to Meru, or Nishadha and Nila) extend for a hundred thousand Yojanas(, running east and west). Each of the others diminishes ten thousand Yojanas, as it lies more remote from the centre. They are two thousand Yojanas in height, and as many in breadth 3. The Varshas or countries between these ranges are Bharata (India), south of the Himavan mountains;
vp.2.2 next Kimpurusha, between Himavan and Hemakuta; north of the latter, and south of Nishadha, is Harivarsha; north of Meru is Ramyaka, extending from the Nila or blue mountains to the sweta (or white) mountains; Hiranmaya lies between the sweta and sringi ranges; and Uttarakuru is beyond the latter, following the same direction as Bharata 4. Each of these is nine thousand Yojanas in extent. Ilavrita is of similar dimensions, but in the centre of it is the golden mountain Meru, and the country extends nine thousand Yojanas in each direction from the four sides of the mountain 5. There are four mountains in this Varsha, formed as buttresses to Meru, each ten thousand Yojanas in elevation: that on the east is called Mandara; that on the south, Gandhamadana; that on the west, Vipula; and that on the north, Suparswa 6: on each of these stands severally a Kadamba tree, a Jambu tree, a Pipal, and a Vata 7; each spreading over eleven hundred Yojanas, and towering aloft like banners on the mountains. From the Jambu tree the insular continent Jambu dwipa derives its appellations. The apples of that tree are as large as elephants: when they are rotten, they fall upon the crest of the mountain, and from their expressed juice is formed the Jambu river, the waters of which are drunk by the inhabitants; and in consequence of drinking of that stream, they pass their days in content and health, being subject neither to perspiration, to foul odours, to decrepitude, nor organic decay. The soil
vp.2.2 The country of Bhadraswa lies on the east of Meru, and Ketumala on the west; and between these two is the region of Ilavrita. On the east of the same is the forest Chaitraratha; the Gandhamadana wood is on the south; the forest of Vaibhraja is on the west; and the grove of Indra, or Nandana, is on the north. There are also four great lakes, the waters of which are partaken of by the gods, called Arunoda, Mahabhadra, sitoda, and Manasa 8.
vp.2.2 The principal mountain ridges which project from the base of Meru, like filaments from the root of the lotus, are, on the east, sitanta, Mukunda, Kurari, Malyavan, and Vaikanka; on the south, Trikuta, sisira, Patanga, Ruchaka, and Nishadha; on the west, sikhivasas, Vaidurya, Kapila, Gandhamadana, and Jarudhi; and on the north, sankhakuta, Rishabha, Naga, Hansa, and Kalanjara. These and others extend from between the intervals in the body, or from the heart, of Meru 9.
vp.2.2 On the summit of Meru is the vast city of Brahma, extending fourteen thousand leagues, and renowned in heaven; and around it, in the cardinal points and the intermediate quarters, are situated the stately cities of Indra and the other regents of the spheres 10. The capital of Brahma
vp.2.2 is enclosed by the river Ganges, which, issuing from the foot of Vishnu, and washing the lunar orb, falls here from the skies 11, and, after encircling the city, divides into four mighty rivers, flowing in opposite directions. These rivers are the sita, the Alakananda, the Chakshu, and the Bhadra. The first, falling upon the tops of the inferior mountains, on the east side of Meru, flows over their crests, and passes through the country of Bhadraswa to the ocean: the Alakananda flows south, to the country of Bharata, and, dividing into seven rivers on the way, falls into the sea: the Chakshu falls into the sea, after traversing all the western mountains, and passing through the country of Ketumala: and the
vp.2.2 Meru, then, is confined between the mountains Nila and Nishadha (on the north and south), and between Malyavan and Gandhamadana (on the west and east 13): it lies between them like the pericarp of a lotus. The countries of Bharata, Ketumala, Bhadraswa, and Uttarakuru lie, like leaves of the lotus of the world, exterior to the boundary mountains. Jathara and Devakuta are two mountain ranges, running north and south, and connecting the two chains of Nishadha and Nila. Gandhamadana
vp.2.2 and Kailasa extend, east and west, eighty Yojanas in breadth, from sea to sea. Nishadha and Pariyatra are the limitative mountains on the west, stretching, like those on the east, between the Nila and Nishadha ranges: and the mountains Trisringa and Jarudhi are the northern limits of Meru, extending, east and west, between the two seas 14. Thus I have repeated to you the mountains described by great sages as the boundary mountains, situated in pairs, on each of the four sides of Meru. Those also, which have been mentioned as the filament mountains (or spurs), sitanta and the rest, are exceedingly delightful. The vallies embosomed amongst them are the favourite resorts of the Siddhas and Charanas: and there are situated upon them agreeable forests, and pleasant cities, embellished with the palaces of Vishnu, Lakshmi, Agni, Surya, and other deities, and peopled by celestial spirits; whilst the Yakshas, Rakshasas, Daityas, and Danavas pursue their pastimes in the vales. These, in short, are the regions of Paradise, or Swarga, the seats of the righteous, and where the wicked do not arrive even after a hundred births.
vp.2.8 Description of the sun: his chariot; its two axles: his horses. The cities of the regents of the cardinal points. The sun s course: nature of his rays: his path along the ecliptic. Length of day and night. Divisions of time: equinoxes and solstices, months, years, the cyclical Yuga, or age of five years. Northern and southern declinations. Saints on the Lokaloka mountain. Celestial paths of the Pitris, gods, Vishnu. Origin of Ganga, and separation, on the top of Meru, into four great rivers.
vp.2.8 When the sun (at midday) passes over either of the cities of the gods, on the Manasottara mountain (at the cardinal points), his light extends to three cities and two intermediate points: when situated in an intermediate point, he illuminates two of the cities and three intermediate. points (in either case one hemisphere). From the period of his rise the sun moves with increasing rays until noon, when he proceeds towards his setting with rays diminishing (that is, his heat increases or diminishes in proportion as he advances to, or recedes from, the meridian of any place). The east and west quarters are so called from the sun s rising and setting there 7. As far as the sun shines in front, so far he shines behind and on either hand, illuminating all places except the summit of Meru, the mountain of the immortals; for when his rays reach the court of Brahma, which is there situated, they are repelled and driven back by the overpowering radiance which there prevails: consequently there is always the alternation of day and night, according as the divisions of the continent lie in the northern (or southern) quarter, or inasmuch as they are situated north (or south) of Meru 8.
vp.2.8 From that third region of the atmosphere, or seat of Vishnu, proceeds the stream that washes away all sin, the river Ganga, embrowned with the unguents of the nymphs of heaven, who have sported in her waters. Having her source in the nail of the great toe of Vishnu s left foot, Dhruva 27 receives her, and sustains her day and night devoutly on his head; and thence the seven Rishis practise the exercises of austerity in her waters, wreathing their braided locks with her waves. The orb of the moon, encompassed by her accumulated current, derives augmented lustre from her contact. Falling from on high, as she issues from the moon; she alights on the summit of Meru, and thence flows to the four
vp.3.5 It had been formerly agreed by the Munis, that any one of them who, at a certain time, did not join an assembly held on mount Meru should incur the guilt of killing a Brahman, within a period of seven nights 2. Vaisampayana alone failed to keep the appointment, and consequently killed, by an accidental kick with his foot, the child of his sister. He then addressed his scholars, and desired them to perform the penance expiatory of Brahmanicide on his behalf. Without any hesitation Yajnawalkya refused, and said, "How shall I engage in penance with these miserable and inefficient Brahmans?" On which his Guru, being incensed, commanded him to relinquish all that he had learnt from him. "You speak contemptuously," he observed, "of these young Brahmans, but of what use is a disciple who disobeys my commands?" "I spoke," replied Yajnawalkya, "in perfect faith; but as to what I have read from you, I have had enough: it is no more than this (acting as if he would eject it from his stomach); when he brought up the texts of the Yajush in substance stained with blood. He then departed. The other scholars of Vaisampayana, transforming themselves to partridges Tittiri(), picked
vp.5.1 At that time, Earth, overburdened by her load, repaired to mount Meru to an assembly of the gods, and addressing the divinities, with Brahma at their head, related in piteous accents all her distress. Agni"," said Earth, "is the progenitor of gold; Surya, of rays of light 5: the parent and guide of me and of all spheres is the supreme Narayana, who is Brahma, the lord of the lord of patriarchs; the eldest of the eldest born; one with minutes and hours; one with time; having form, though indiscrete. This assemblage of yourselves, O gods, is but a part of him. The sun, the winds, the saints, the Rudras, the Vasus, the Aswins, fire, the patriarch creators of the universe, of whom Atri is the first, all are but forms of the mighty and inscrutable Vishnu. The Yakshas, Rakshasas, Daityas, spirits of evil, serpents, and children of Danu, the singers and nymphs of heaven, are forms of the great spirit, Vishnu. The heavens painted with planets, constellations, and stars; fire, water, wind, and myself, and every perceptible thing; the whole universe itself consists of Vishnu. The multifarious forms of that manifold being encounter
vp.5.1 [paragraph continues] Let all the gods also, in their own portions, go down to earth, and wage war with the haughty Asuras, who are there incorporate, and who shall every one of them be destroyed. Doubt not of this: they shall perish before the withering glance of mine eyes. This my (black) hair shall be impersonated in the eighth conception of the wife of Vasudeva, Devaki, who is like a goddess; and shall slay Kansa, who is the demon Kalanemi." Thus having spoken, Hari disappeared; and the gods bowing to him, though invisible, returned to the summit of mount Meru, from whence they descended upon earth.
vp.5.38 religious penances, standing in water, and meditating on the eternal spirit, for many years. In consequence of the overthrow of the Asuras, there was a great festival on the summit of Meru: on their way to which, Rambha, Tilottama, and hundreds and thousands of beautiful nymphs, saw the ascetic Ashtavakra, and they praised and hymned him for his devotions. They bowed down before him, and eulogized him, as he was immersed up to his throat in water, his hair twisted in a braid. So they sang in honour of him whatever they thought would be most agreeable to that most eminent of Brahmans. Ashtavakra at last said to them, I am well pleased with you, illustrious damsels; whatever you wish for, ask of me, and I will give it you, however difficult it may be of attainment. Then all those nymphs, Rambha, Tilottama, and others, recorded in the Vedas, replied, It is enough for us that thou art pleased; what need we aught else, venerable Brahman? But some amongst them said, If, exalted sir, you are indeed pleased with us, then grant us a husband, the best of men, and sovereign of the Brahmans. So be it, replied Ashtavakra, and thereupon came up from the waters. When the nymphs beheld him coming out of the water, and saw that he was very ugly, and crooked in eight places, they could not restrain their merriment, but laughed aloud. The Muni was very angry, and cursed them, and said, Since you have been so impertinent as to laugh at my deformity, I denounce upon you this
vp.6.8 knoweth all things, who is the form of all things, being without form himself, and of whom whatever is, from mount Meru to an atom, all consists he, the glorious Vishnu, the destroyer of all sin is described in this Purana. By hearing this Purana an equal recompense is obtained to that which is derived from the performance of an Aswamedha sacrifice, or from fasting at the holy places Prayaga, Pushkara, Kurukshetra, or Arbuda. Hearing this Purana but once is as efficacious as the offering of oblations in a perpetual fire for a year. The man who with well governed passions bathes at Mathura on the twelfth day of the month Jyeshtha 5, and beholds (the image of) Hari, obtains a great recompense; so does he who with mind fixed upon Kesava attentively recites this Purana. The man who bathes in the waters of the Yamuna on the twelfth lunation of the light fortnight of the month in which the moon is in the mansion Jyeshtha, and who fasts and worships Achyuta in the city of Mathura, receives the reward of an uninterrupted Aswamedha. Beholding the degree of prosperity enjoyed by others of eminence, through the merits of their descendants, a man s paternal ancestors, his parents and their parents, exclaim, "Whosoever of our descendants, having bathed in the Yamuna and fasted, will worship Govinda in Mathura, in the light fortnight of Jyeshtha, will secure for us eminent exaltation; for we shall be elevated by the merits of our posterity!" A man of good extraction will present

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