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G (ri) The letter G means both Gandharva and Vinayaka (Agni Purana, Chapter 348) .


GABHASTIMAN. An island. Once the valiant Sahasrabahu conquered and subjugated it. (M. B. Sabhd Parva, Chapter 38) .


GADA. A weapon. An asura called Gada was born to Kasyapaprajapati by his wife Diti. Visnu killed Gada, and Visvakarman made a weapon with his bone. Since the weapon was made from Gada's bone it came to be known as Gada. (Agni Purana, Chapter 114).


GADA I. A brother (Yadava) of Balabhadrarama.


I ) General. Vasudeva had, besides Devaki, seven wives called Rohitii, Bhadrd, Malin!, Madird, Ill, Rocand and Pauravi, and out of the seven Rohini had six sons called Balabhadrardma, Gada, Sdrana, Durdama, Vikala and Krta. (Bhagavata, Navama Skandha).


2) Other details.


,(1) Gada was present at the svayarizvara of Draupadi. (Adi Parva, Chapter 185, Verse 32) .


(2) On the marriage of Arjuna with Subhhdrd, it was Gada who brought the dowry of Subhadra from Dvdrakd to Indraprastha. (Adi Parva, Chapter 220, Verse 32) .


(3) When gri Krsna came to Dvdraka Gada received him with embraces. (M. B. Sabhd Parva, Chapter 2, Verse 35) .


(4) Gada also was present on the occasion when the Pdndavas first stepped into the beautiful palace built for them by Maya at Indraprastha. (M. B. Sabha Parva, Chapter 4, Verse 39) .


(5) Along with the other Ydda.vas Gada too was present at the rajasuya yajfia of Yudhisthira. (M. B. Sabhd Parva, Chapter 34, Verse 16) .


(6) Gada held a prominent position among the Yadavas deputed to guard Dvaraka against the onslaught of King Salva. (M. B. Vana Parva, Chapter 15, Verse 9) .


(7) Gada also accompanied Sri Krsna to the Mvamedha yajfia performed by Yudhisthira. (Asvamedha


Parva, Chapter 86, Verse 9) .


(8) Sri Krsna felt uncontrollably angry when Gada was attacked during the mutual fighting with iron rods by the Yadavas which climaxed in their total annihilation. (Mausala Parva, Chapter 3, Verse 45) .


GADA II. See Gada. GADADHARA. A synonym of Mahavisnu.


There is a place called Gaya to the north of Mount Kalanjara, to the south of Himalayas, to the east of Kmasthali and to the west of Vasupura. Once a king called Gaya conducted at Gaya an Asvamedha, a Naramedha (yajna at which man is offered as sacrifice) and a Mahamedha and Mahavisnu acted as gate-keeper of


Gaya. As Visnu stood guard there holding the gada (club) in his hands he came to be known as Gadadhara also thenceforth. (Vamana Purana, Chapter 76) .


GADAPARVA. A sub-parva of- Salya Parva in Mahabharata. (See IVIahabharata).


GADAVASANA. A particular centre in Madhurapuri. The name owes its origin to the following reason. When Krsna killed Karirsa, his father-in-law jarasandha got so angry that he hurled his ga.da (club) ninetynine times at Madhurapuri from his capital, Girivraja. The spot where the gada finally fell came to be called Gadavasana in course of time. (M. B. Sabha Parva, Chapter 18, Verses 22-25) .


GADHI I. Father of Visvamitra.


1) Genealogy. Descended from Visnu thus : BrahmaAtri-Candra-Budha - Pururavas - Ayus - Nahusa-Yayati Puru - Janarnejaya-Pracinvan-Pravira - Namasyu - Vitabhaya-S undu-Bahuvidha-Sarhyati-Rahovadi-Raudras vaMatinara-Santurodha - Dusyarita - Bharata (Vitatha) -Suhotra-Brhatputra-Ajamidha jahnu-Balakasva-Kusika (Kus a) -Gadhi.


2) Birth. Kuga had by his wife Vaidarbhi four sons called Ku~amba, Kusanabha, Asurtarajas and Vasu. Of the four sons Kusamba built a city called Kausambi, Kusanabha built the city of Mahodayapura, Asurtarajas the city of Dharmaranya and Vasu the city of Girivraja, and they administered their respective cities. Kusanabha had hundred daughters by his wife Ghrtaci, an Apsara woman. He felt very sad that he had no sons. At last he performed the Putrakamesti yajna, and Gadhi was born to him.


3) Gddhi's children. A son named Visvamitra and a daughter called Satyavati were born to Gadhi. Satyavati was married to sage Rcika. After the wedding of his daughter Gadhi crowned Visvamitra as the king and left for the forest for tapas. During his stay in the forest Gadhi was put up in the asrama of Rcika for a long time and he also went on many pilgrimages. (Santi Parva, Chapter 49). (See also Aatyavati and Visva-


mitra .


4) Death. Gadhi entered mahasamadhi and went to heaven. (Salya Parva, Chapter 16) .


GADHI II. A Brahmin who showed Visnu's power of maya. (See under Maya).


GAJA I. A powerful monkey King who fought on the side of Sri Rama against Ravana. (Vana Parva, Chapter 283, Verse 3) .


GAJA II. Younger brother of Sakuni, the son of Subala. He, along with his brother fought in the great war against the Pandavas and got killed by Iravan. (Bhisma Parva, Chapter 90).


GAJAKARNA. A yaksa in Kubera's assembly. (Sabha Parva, Chapter 10, Verse 16) .


GAJASIRAS. A warrior of Skanda. (Salya Parva, Chapter 45, Verse 60) .


GAJENDRAMOKSAM. The story about Indradyumna, the Pandyan King being transformed into an elephant due to the curse of Agastya and his attaining heaven. (See under Indradyumna).


GALAVA. A celebrated sage.


1) Birth. He was a son of Visvamitra. He was a brahmavadi. (Sloka 52, Chapter 4, Anusasana Parva. 2) How he got his name. There is no record of his original name in any of the Puranas. He got his name Galava later. There is a story about this both in Devibhagavata and Harivarirsa. It is as follows


There was once a King called Aruna in the family of Mandhata. Aruna got a son and he was named Satyavrata. (It was this Satyavrata who later became the well famed Trisanku). When Satyavrata was a youngster he once went inside the marriage hall of a brahmin and kidnapped the bride. Furious at this evil deed of his son the king sent him out from his palace and Satyavrata roamed about aimlessly.


Nature protested against this deed of the King abandoning his heir and there was no rain in the country for twelve years. The people were all put to great trouble. Among those who suffered were the wife and children of Visvamitra. Visvamitra had at that time gone to the shores of the river Kausiki, for doing penance. The family of Visvamitra was in great distress living without any means for food. The sight of the children crying for food to appease their hunger pained their mother much. So she decided to sell one child and feed the others by what she got from the sale. It was better to be without one child than all the children dying out of hunger.


She made a rope out of darbha leaves and tying it round the neck of one child took it to the market for sale. Both the mother and child were weeping profusely on their way. Satyavrata saw them and took pity on them. When Satyavrata heard their sad story and knew that the woman was the wife of Visvimitra he told her thus: "Oh, Venerable Lady, you need pot sell this boy. Untie the rope round his neck and throw it away. I will look after your family till the return of your husband. I will daily bring food for you all and hang it on a tree near your asrama."


The mother was extremely happy to hear this and she at once untied the rope round the neck of the boy and the'boy from thence became known as Galava. (For details see under Trisanku).


3) Gurudakrina of Galaaa. Galava continued his education tinder his father. At that time Dharmadeva to




test Visvamitra came to him disguised as Vasistha. Visvamitra came out with rice to receive the guest but by that time the guest had disappeared. But ViAVamitra remained there with the rice for hundred years till Dharmadeva returned. All these years Galava looked after Visvamitra's comforts. Visvamitra was immensely pleased with Galava and allowed him to go away free without any gurudaksina when his education was over. Galava wanted to give some daksina but Visvamitra refused to accept it. Galava insisted on giving and then Visvamitra asked him to give whatever he liked but Galava wanted the Daksina to be named. Disgusted with this stubbornness Visvamitra said "Go and get me eight hundred horses each with one of its ears black". Galava was shocked to hear the demand and greatly worried roamed about in search of horses of the type specified. Garuda taking pity on his sad plight took him to the palace of Yayati. Hearing the story of Galava Yayati sent his daughter Madhavi with Galava saying that if she was given in marriage to any king he would give him the eight hundred horses of the type he required.


Galava took Madhavi to Haryasva, a King of the Iksvaku line of Kings. Haryasva was doing penance at that time to obtain a child. Galava said that Haryasva would get a son of Madhavi and he should, therefore, accept Madhavi and give him in return eight hundred horses each with one ear black. Haryasva was amenable to the terms but the only difficulty was that he had only two hundred horses of the type specified. Finding this difficulty Mddhavi said "Oh, Galava please do not worry on that account. I have ,a boon from a brahmavadi sage that I would remain a maiden even after delivery. So give me in marriage to this King and get two hundred horses. After giving birth to a son to this King take me to another King and get two hundred horses from him and then to another and thus by giving me to four Kings you can get the eight hundred horses you require."


Galava liked this plan and so when Madhavi gave birth to a son he took her to Divodasa, Raja of Kasi. When a son was born to him Galava took her to Usinara, King of Bhoja. Galava thus got six hundred horses but there was nobody else to give him the remaining two hundred. When Galava was contemplating as to what he should do next Garuda came to his rescue. He advised Galava to give six hundred horses and Madhavi in lieu of the remaining two hundred horses to Visvamitra. Galava gave Visvamitra the horses and Madhavi and pleased with the gurudaksina Visvamitra blessed Galava. Visvamitra got a son named Astaka of Madhavi. (See under Astaka).


4) Galava and Citrasena. Galava was once having his evening prayers in the river when the spittings from the mouth of Citrasena who was travelling by air above fell on the puja materials of Galava. Galava went and complained to Sri Krsna of this and Krsna in haste promised to bring before Galava the head of Citrasena before the sun set. Narada who heard this went and informed Citrasena of Krsna's vow. Citrasena was frightened to death. But Narada asked him not to lose hope and advised Sandhya and Val!, wives of Citrasena, to approach Subhadra, sister of Krsna, for protection. Both of .them went to Subhadra and made a


grand fire-pit in front of her palace. Citrasena decided to end his life by jumping into the fire and as he was cixcling the pit his wives wept loudly. Since her husband Arjuna was away from the palace Subhadra herself ran to the place from where she heard the cries. When they saw Subhadra they begged for `Mangalyabhiksa' (a boon to live with one's husband). Subhadra agreed to' give them that. Then she heard their r tory in full and only then did she realise that she had undertaken to do the impossible. Yet, to help Subhadra, Arjuna agreed to py otect Citrasena. When Sri Krsna attacked Citrasena Arjuna defended. The fight then ensued between Arjuna and Krsna. Both had very powerful and divine weapons and' the world stood on the verge of a collapse by their fight. Then Subhadra did a brave thing. She stood between the two and requested for a cease-fire. Then Sri Krsna asked Citrasena to bow down and touch the feet of Galava. Galava pardoned him. (Padma Purana).


5) Tafiodana. Galava once gave Yayati one eighth portion of the goodness accrued to him by his long penance. (See Yayati for details).


6) Galava gets a horse. Patalaketu, a* demon, used to give trouble to Galava daily while he used to do penance. Once this demon sent a deep hot breath to the sky and then a horse fell from the sky. Soon an unknown voice from air said, "This is a very strong horse and it would travel many a yojana in an hour." Galava took that horse and gave it to Rtadhvaja. (Vamana Purana, Chapter 59). 7) Other details regarding Galava. (i) He was an intimate friend of King Pratipa. (Sloka 13, Chapter 20, Harivams a) .


(ii) He was a shining member of the court of Yudhisthira. (8loka 15, Chapter 4, Sabha Parva).


(iii) He shone in the court of Indra. (9loka 10, Chapter 7, Sabha. Parva).


(iv) He conducted a discussion with Natada on the true nature of real prosperity. (Sloka 5, Chapter 287, anti Parva).


(v) On another occasion he spoke to Dharmaputra on the glory of the universe. (Sloka 52, Chapter 18, Anusasana Parva).


(vi) He swore before God to prove his innocence in the lotus-theft involving Agastya. (9loka 37, Chapter 94, Anusasana Parva).


(vii) grngava who married Vrddhakanya was a son of Galava. (9loka 14, Chapter 52, Salya Parva). For details see under Visvakarma.


GAM. Music. (Agni Purana, Chapter 348) .


GANA. A female attendant of Skanda. (Salya Parva, Chapter 46, Verse 3).


GANAM. An army division. Three Gulmas form one Ganam. (See Aksauhini).




1) Genealogy. A son of Siva with face like that of an elephant. As Siva has appointed this son as chief of the ganas (attendants) he is called Ganapati.


2) His birth. While Siva and Parvati assumed the form of monkeys and enjoyed themselves in the forest Parvati got pregnant, and Siva took the semen from the womb and gave it to Vayu (wind God.) Vayu deposited it in the womb of Afijana, who delivered a son named Hanum5n. Siva assumed the form of an elephant (tusker and Parvati that of a she-elephant. Parvati delivered a son in the form of an elephant. That son was named Ganapati. (Uttara Ramayana).


3) His tusk broken. Once Para- urama arrived at Kailasa to meet Siva. At that time 8iva was asleep. So Ganapati did not allow him to get in. A duel broke out between them. In that duel one of Ganapati's tusks was broken. (Padma Purana).


4) Ganapati turned into crow. An exceptionally hot summer set in once in South India. The whole land became parched. So Agastya went to Siva and requested for some holy water, and the Lord put Kaveri who was worshipping him just then, in the Kamandalu (something like a teapot which sannyasins carry with them) of Agastya and sent him back. Indra, who did not relish this action of diva, asked Ganapati to some how or other upset Agastya's Kamandalu of holy water, and Ganapati, in the guise of a crow went and sat on the brink of the Kamandalu and thus upset it. Agastya and the crow quarrelled with each other. Then did the crow assume its original form as Ganapati and blessed Agastya. Moreover, Ganapati filled Agastya's Kamandalu with holy water, which the latter distributed among devotees in South India, and that is the present Kaveri river.


5) Other stories about Ganapati's head. The Puranas contain two different stories as to how Ganapati happened to have the elephant's head. Once Parvati pointed out to Ganapati the planet Saturn, and his head got burned down due to the ocular power of Saturn, and according to one story Ganapati's head thus lost was replaced with that of an elephant. The other story is more interesting. When once Siva tried to enter the room where Parvati had gone to take her bath clad in a single clothing Ganapati prevented diva from doing so. Siva, enraged at the obstruction made by Ganapati, cut off his head, and when his anger was cooled down he replaced Ganapati's lost head with that of an elephant. (Padma Purana).


6) Wedding of Ganapati. Ganapati has two wives called Siddhi and Buddlhi.


When Ganapati and Subrahmanya attained the age of marriage they were in a hurry to get married. Siva conducted a test. Siva and Parvati told them that he who returned first after going round the world would be married first. Accordingly Subrahmanya mounted his vehicle (peacock) and set out for a tour round the world. Ganapati did nothing of the sort. But after a little time he went round his parents, viz., Siva and Parvati. Asked for an explanation about his action Gana.pati replied that since the whole universe existed in giva and Parvati, going around them tantamounted to touring round the world. Pleased at this reply his parents got Ganapati married first.


7) highnesaaratvam. (Power to remove all obstacles) .


Ganapati is called Vighnesvara because he is the god who removes all obstacles from the paths of men or creates them.


Ganapati has the power to get anything done without any obstructions as also the power to put obstacles in the path of anything being got done. Therefore, the custom came into vogue of worshipping Ganapati at the very commencement of any action for its completion without any hitch or hindrance. Actions begun with


such worship would be duly completed, Indians believe. In support of that belief the following story from the 6th tarafiga of Lavanakalarhbakam, Kathasaritsagara may be quoted.


The Devas decided to appoint Subrahmanya as chief of the army to kill Tarakasura. When Indra took up the pot of water purified by mantras to anoint Subrahmanya's head with it, his hands became benumbed, and he stood aghast. Then Siva said that any action begun without Ganapati puja would meet with such obstacles. At once Indra worshipped Ganapati and his hands recovered from the paralysed condition. And, Subrahmanya was duly anointed with the holy water.


8) Ganapati wrote the Mahabharata. After the death of the Kauravas and the Pandavas sage Vyasa entered again into meditation. But, the whole story of the Bharata reflected in the mirror of his mind. He wanted to translate the story into a great poem and requested Brahma to suggest a suitable person to write the story on his dictation, and Brahma suggested Ganapati's name. Then Vyasa thought about Ganapati and he appeared before the sage. But, Ganapati did not appreciate the idea of serving as Vyasa's scribe. So he stipulated a condition that he would write down the poem provided Vyasa dictated it in such a manner that he had not to lay down his pen even once before the epic was completed. To this Vyasa stipulated the counter condition that when he dictated without the least interruption or pause Ganapati should not write down the matter without understanding the meaning of it. And, under such conditions the composition of the Mahabharata was completed within three years. (Adi Parva, Chapter 1, Verses 74-80) .


9) Ganapati puja. Ganapati occupies the most prominent place among the Devas connected with diva. In South India, Ganapati puja came into vogue in the 6th century A.D., and idols of Ganapati now extant might have been made at that period. In South India, temples dedicated to Ganapati are in no way less in number than those to Subrahmanya. The idol of Ganapati is installed at the gateways of villages and forts, under the fig tree, at the entrance of temples and at the southwestern corner of diva temples. Two types of idols are important: the Itarhpiri (the proboscis turned to the left side) and the Valarhpiri (the proboscis turned to the right side) . It is stated that the enormously big belly of Ganapati contains in it the whole universe.


10) Synonyms of Ganapati.


Vinayako vighnarajo dvaimatura-ganadhipah apyekadanto herarnbo


lariibodaragajananah. (Amarakosa).


(Vinayaka, Vighnaraja, Dvaimatura, Ganadhipa, Ekadanta, Heramba, Lambodara, Gajanana).


GANDA. A dasi, who served the saptarsis. (Anusasana Parva, Chapter 93) .


GANDAKAM. A particular locality on the banks of river Gandaki. Bhimasena once conquered this place. (Sabha Parva, Chapter 10, Verse 15) .


GANDAKANDU, A Yaksa of the assembly of Kubera. (M.B. Sabha Parva, Chapter 10).


GANDAKI  A river in orthern India which falls into the Ganga.


2) Origin. There arose an argument between the




Devas and the asuras about the Amrtam (nectar) got from the churning of Ksirabdhi (the milk ocean) and Maha-is nu appeared in the form of Mohini and enticed the a-rras away from the subject and gave the nectar to the Devas. Attracted by the great beauty of Mohini, Siva made love to her, and the sweet produced at the time of their embrace flowed as river Gandaki through the earth. (Skandha Purana, Asura Khanda).


3) It became a holy river. While the worms on the banks of Gandaki were once collecting soil they fell into the river, and all at once they attained salvation, the reason being that the water in the river had been formed by


the sweet of Visnu and Siva. And, from that day onwards people began worshipping Gandaki as a holy river. (Skandha Purana, Asura Khanda).


4) Other information.


(i) He who drinks the water of the river is freed from sins. (Adi Parva, Chapter 169, Verse 20) .


(ii) The river is also known as Narayani, Salagrami, Hiranvati and Hiranyavati. (Bhisma Parva, Chapter 9, Verse 25) .


(iii) Sri KMrs Arjuna and Bhimasena once on their way from Indraprastha to Girivraja crossed this river. (Sabha Parva, Chapter 20, Verse 27).


(iv) The water in Gandaki is a mixture of the waters of all holy rivers. Therefore, a bath in Gandaki is of equal value as an Asvamedha yajna and he who bathes in it will attain Suryaloka. (Vana Parva, Chapter 84, Verse 113) .


(v) Gandaki is one of the rivers which were responsible for the origin of Agni (fire). (Vana Parva, Chapter 84, Verse 113) .


GANDHAKALI. Another name of Satyavati. (Adi Parva, Chapter 95, Verse 48) .


GANDHAMADANA I. A monkey, who had been helpful to Sri Rama, was the son of Kubera. (Valmiki Ramayana, Bala Kanda, Canto 17, Verse 11). This monkey usually stayed on Mount Gandhamadana. During the Rama-Ravana war he led a contingent of monkeys. (Vana Parva, Chapter 283, Verse 5) .


GANDHAMADANA II. A Raksasa King, who stays in Kubera's assembly : (Sabha Parva, Chapter 10) .


GANDHAMADANA(M). A mountain famed in the Puranas and lying to the east of the Himalayas. (Bhagavata, Pancama Skandha). The puranic importance of the mountain may be summarised as follows :-


(1) Kasyapaprajapati did tapas at this mountain. (Adi Parva, Chapter 30, Verse 10) .


(2) Ananta (Adisesa) had once done tapas here. (Adi Parva, Chapter 36, Verse 3) .


(3) Once Pandu went to the Satasrfrga mountain along with his wives Kunti and Madri for doing tapas, and on that occasion they visited Gandhamadana also.


(Adi Parva, Chapter 118, Verse 48).


(4) This mountain assumes the form of a divine person. attends Kubera's assembly and worships him.


(Sabha Parva, Chapter 10, Verse 32) .


(5) Sri Krsna in the company of Narayanarsi spent 10,000 years on this mountain as an anchorite. (Vana Parva, Chapter 12, Verse 11) .


(6) Arjuna on his way to Mount Kailasa to do tapas crossed the Gandhamadana mountain. (Vana Parva, Chapter 37, Verse 41) .


(7) Only those who possess power got by tapas will


be able to climb this mountain. (Vana Parva, Chapter 140, Verse 22).


(8) There is the Badari tree and under it there is an asrama of Naranarayanas on the heights of this moun. tain, and Yaksas stay there always. (Vana Parva, Chapter 141, Verse 22).


(9) Onc_- the Pandavas, with the aid of Ghatotkaca mounted this mountain. (Vana Parva, Chapter 145).


(10) It was here, at this mountain that Bhima killed Maniman, a friend of Kuber;a. (Vana Parva, Chapter 160, Verse 76) .


(11) Kubera, who was driven out of Lafika stayed at this mountain during the initial periods. (Vana Parva, Chapter 275, Verse 33) .


GANDHARA. A stretch of land of ancient Bharata. It is believed that this land stretched from the shores of river Sindhu to Kabul. Subala was a mighty ruler of this country. His daughter Gandhari was the wife of Dhrtardstra. (Sloka 11, Chapter 111, Adi Parva) .


Agni Purana points out a relationship between the Gandharas and the Dravidas. Descending in order from Visnu were Candra-Budha-Pururavas-Ayus-Nahusa -Yayati-Turvasu. In order from Turvasu were VargaGobhanu-Trais ani-Karandhama- Marutta- Du syanta-Varatha-Gandira-Gandhara. From Gandhara arose the five different provincialists: Gandharas, Keralas, Colas, Pandyas and Kolas. (Chapter 277, Agni Purana).


GANDHARI. Wife of Dhrtarastra.


1) Birth. There was a king called Subala in the family of Turvasu, brother of Yadu. (For genealogy see under Subala). Subala became the King of the land of Gandhara. This land extended from the river Sindhu to Kabul. Gandhari was the daughter of Subala. (Chapter 111, Adi Parva).


2) Marriage. Gandhari became a devotee of Siva even from her childhood. Siva became pleased with her and blessed her saying that she would bear a hundred sons. Bhisma came to know of this and he planned to get her married to Dhrtarastra. One day he sent a messenger to Subala making a proposal. Subala knew that Dhrtarastra was born blind but considering his lineage and the powerful alliance it would make, consented to the proposal of Bhisma. Sakuni, brother of Gandhari, then by the order of his father took Gandhari to Hastinapura and Dhrtarastra accepted her as his wife. Gandhari obeying his father's instructions without a demur accepted her blind husband with such devotion that she made herself blind by tightly covering her eyes with a silk shawl. (Chapter 110, Adi Parva).


3) Birth of Sons. Once Vyasa came to her exhausted with hunger and thirst. Gandhari appeased his hunger and thirst with tasty things to eat and drink. Vyasa was immensely pleased and he also blessed her and said she would get a hundred sons. Very soon she. became pregnant. But even after two years she did not deliver, while Kunti, wife of Pandu, gave birth to a son. Grief-stricken, she hit hardly on her womb secretly and then a great mass of flesh came out. Then Vyasa appeared before her and advised her to cut the lump of flesh into a hundred pieces and deposit one each in a jar of ghee. Vyasa himself cut it into pieces. Gandhari expressed a desire to have a girl also. Vyasa cut it into hundred and one pieces and put them in hundred and one jars of ghee. In due time the jars broke and a hundred sons and a daughter came out of the jars. The daughter was named Du:"gala. For their name see 'Kauravas'. Dhrtarastra got another son named Yuyutsu. (Chapters 115 and 116, Adi Parva).


4) Gdndhari faints. When Sanjaya reported about the death of Karna at the battle both Dhrtarastra and Gandhdri fainted. (~loka 55, Chapter 96, Karna Parva).


5) Gdndhdri starts to curse the Pdndavas. When the battle was over the sons of Gandhari and their followers were killed. Dhrtarastra suggested that the Pandavas should visit Gandhari and pay homage to her. The Pandavas, therefore, went and stood before Gandhari very respectfully. Vengeance boiled in her heart and her body shivered. Gandhari was about to curse the Pandavas when Vyasa, intervened saying "Gandhari ! Don't you remember you said that victory would lie on the side of the righteous in this war? Your words are not wasted. The Pandavas won the battle because right was on their side. So why should you get agitated ?" GAndhdri became calm on hearing these words and she admitted that the end of the Kuru dynasty came because of the mistakes of Duryodhana, Sakuni, Karna and Dussasana. She, thereafter, treated the Pandavas as her own sons. (Chapter 14, Stri Parva, M.B.).


6) Dharmaputra's foot-nails become blue. Following the instructions of Dhrtarastra, the Pandavas, approached and bowed before Gandhari. She covered her face with a cloth and wept, tears rolling down her cheeks. When Dharmaputra bent to touch her feet the latter saw through the veil on her face the foot-nails of Dharmaputra. A few drops of the lachrymal water fell on the foot-nails of Dharmaputra making them turn blue instantly. ('Chapter 15, Stri Parva).


7) Gdndhari curses Krsna. At the end of the battle the aggrieved Gandhari went to Kuruksetra together with Krsna and other relatives. Seeing mighty Kings on the Kaurava side lying dead like huge trees lying truncated Gandhari burst into tears. She knew that Sri Krsna was at the root of all this. Embittered she looked at Krsna and cursed him. "Ho, Krsna, thirtysix years from this day you will lose your sons, ministers, friends and relatives. You will become a lone walker in the forests and be killed by trickery."


It was because of this curse that the Yadava tribe perished and Krsna was struck by the arrow of a hunter which made him end his life on earth.


8) The end ef Gdndhdri. After the great Kuruksetra battle heart-broken Dhrtarastra and Gandhari accompanied by Kunti, Vidura and Sanjaya went to the forests to spend the rest of their life there. Many people and the Pandavas accompanied them up to the river Ganga and there near the asrama of Satayupa Dhrtarastra made a but and lived with Gandhari and Kunti.


The Pandavas felt the separation of their relatives unbearable and lived in grief. After six years one day Dharmaputra saw his mother, Kunti, in a dream. He told his brothers about this and they all felt a desire to go to the forest and see their mother. The next day they reached the shores of Gairga. Vyasa also joined them. Gandhari and Kunti expressed a desire to Vyasa that they would like to see the dead sons and relatives once again. Vyasa then asked them to go and take a dip in the river. When they rose up after a dip they saw


standing on the shores of the river the great warriors Karna and Duryodhana and others. By the yogic power of Vyasa even the blind Dhrtarastra could get the vision. Very soon the vision faded and the Pandavas returned to Hastinapura.


Two days after, fire broke out in the forest where Dhrtarastra was staying. Dhrtarastra, Kunti and Gandhari were burnt to death in that fire. (Chapter 32, Asramavasika Parva).


9) After the death. Dharmaputra performed the obsequies of those who died .in the wild fire (Asramavasrka Parva, Chapter 30) . Leaving the mortal bodies the souls of Dhrtarastra and Gandhari entered Kuberaloka. (8loka 14, Chapter 5, Svargarohana Parva).


10) Synonyms of Gdndhdri. The following words have been used in the Mahabharata to denote Gandhari


Gandhararajaduhita, Saubaleyi, Saubali, Subalaja, Subalaputri and Subalatmaja.


GANDHARI II. Another Gandhari, wife of Ajamidha, one of the great Kings of the Puru dynasty. (SJoka 37, Chapter 95, Adi Parva).


GANDHARVA I. Gandharvas are sons born to the famous Kasyapaprajapati of his wife, Aristha (Agni Purana, Chapter 19) . Both belonged to the race of the Devas.


GANDHARVA II. A King born in the dynasty of Janamejaya. (Bhagavata, Navama Skandha).


GANDHARVA. A marriage settled by the boy and the girl of their own accord. A love marriage. There are six different kinds of marriage: Gandharva, Arsa, Prajapatya, Raksasa, Asura and Paisaca. (See under Vivaha) .


GANDHARVANAGARA. Vyasa has compared munis disappearing from sight to the fading out of Gandharva nagara.


"After having thus spoken to the Kurus, and while they were looking on, the band of sages disappeared in a trice like the fading out of Gandharvanagara." (Adi Parva, Chapter 126, Verses 35 and 36) .


What is this Gandharvanagara ? The following description occurs in Hindi Sabdasagara. "Owing to different optical illusions (sight) of man, villages and cities may appear to exist in the sky and also on seas, rivers, etc. When during summer the air on the upper strata of deserts, seas etc. gets heated, expanded, and rises up, the light passing through it becomes multi-coloured and gives reflections in the sky in the form of village parts or cities. Also can be seen therein reflections of trees, boats etc. One such reflection may be cast on earth also. This is a mere optical illusion. This reflection immediately fades out also. This unreal city which is an optical illusion is Gandharvanagara.


GANDHARVASENA. Daughter of Dhanavahana (a gandharva) who lived in Svayamprabhanagara on Mount Kailasa. She was cured of leprosy by observing somavaravrata. (Skandha Purana).


GANDHARVATIRTHA. An ancient place of pilgrimage on the banks of Sarasvati in North India. The gandharva called Vibhavasu usually dances at this place with his companions. Balabhadra Rama once visited this holy place. (galya Parva, Chapter 37, Verse 9).


GANDHARVI. The first mother of horses. Ka•,>yapaprajapati had by his wife Krodhavasa ten daughters: Mrgi, Mrgamanda, Hari, Bhadramata, Matairgi, Sardixli, gveta, Surabhi, Surasa and Kadru. Of the ten girls Surabhi in due course of time became mother of two daughters. Rohini and Gandharvi. From Rohini was born the cattlebreed and horses were born from Gandharvi. (Valmiki Ramayana, Aranya Kanda, Canto i4) .


GANDHAVATI I. The name Satyavati (Kali) was assumed when sage Para~ara had swept away her matsyagundha (fish smell). She got also another name Yojanagandha. (Adi Parva, Chapter 63, Verse 80).


GANDHAVAT1 II. The city of Vayu (the wind God). There are said to be nine cities on top of Mount Mahameru : (1) Manovati of Brahma at the centre, (2) Just on the eastern *ide of it Amaravati of I-ndra, (3) Agni's Tejovati in the south-eastern corner, (4) Maya's Sarnyamani in the south, 5) Nirrti's Krsnanjana in thesouth-western corner, (6) graddhavati of Varuna on the west, (7) Gandhavati of Vayu in the northwestern corner, (8) Mahodaya of Kubera on the north, an& (9) Yasovati of Isana in the north-eastern corner. (Devibhagavata, Astama Skandha).


GANDIN1. A very beautiful princess of Kasi. Svaphalka married Gandini. (DaSama Skandha, Bhagavata).


GANDIVA. The famous bow of Arjuna.


1) Make. It was Brahma who made the bow. `This terrible bow which can punish the unjust and the wicked has been made by Brahma'. (Udyoga Parva, Chapter 98, Verse 21).


2) Specialities of Gdndiaa. This bow is enough to fight one lakh of people at one and the same time. Both Devas and men could be defeated with it. Chiselled very smooth and shining with many colours it was a very long bow. It was, worshipped by Devas, Danavas and Gandharvas. (Virata Parva, Chapter 43). It gained and also decreased in power as the situation called for. (Udyoga Parva, Chapter 98, Verse 20) .


3) History of Gdndiaa. Brahma, who made this bow kept it with him during the first 1000 years. For the next 1000 years Pxajapati kept it with him. Next, Indra got it from Prajapati and he. used it for 3585 years. After that Candra kept it for 5.00 years with him, and then Varuna came in possession of it. After using it for 100 years Varuna gave it to Arjuna, who used it for 65 years.


4) Gandiroa and Arjuna. Arjuna agreed to protect the Khandava forest from rain, if Indra sent rain when Agni began eating the forest. But, realising that Ariuna possessed no weapons to effectively oppose Indra, Agni requested Varuna to give the following to Arjuna, viz., the Gandiva bow and a quiver wherein the arrows will never be exhausted, and the chariot marked with the symbol of monkey and drawn by four white horses -all kept by Candra. Varuna at once made a present of the above to Arjuna. And, it was with the aid of this Gandiva, that Arjuna defeated Indra at the time of Khandavadaha. (See Khandavadaha). Arjuna had taken a secret vow to cut off the head of anyone who asked him to give the bow to some one else. (Karna Parva, Chapter 69) .


In after years Arjuna won ruany wars with the help of this bow. (See Arjuna).


5) Arjuna gives up Gdndiaa. The great Kuruksetra war, which shook Bharata, to its very foundation came to an end. Dharmaputra was crowned a King. It was at this juncture that the Yadava dynasty got itself anni-


hilated and Sri Krsna entered mahasamadhi. Now the Pandavas lost all interest in mundane life, and they set out for the forest on their great journey after crowning Pariksit, the grandson of Arjuna as King. Their great travel took them to the shores of the Red Sea. The Gandiva was still in Arjuna's hands. On the shores of the Red Sea Agni Deva appeared before the Pandavas and spoke to them "Well, Pandavas, I am Agni Deva. Arjuna requires the Gandiva no more. I got it from Varuna for Arjuna. Return it, therefore, to Varuna."


No sooner did he hear Agni Deva speak thus than did Arjuna throw it into the depths of the sea and also the quiver which never got exhausted of arrows with it. Agni Deva disappeared, and the Pandavas continued their journey. (Mahaprasthanika Parva, Chapter 1) . GAGA. The famous and holy river of India.


1) Origin and general information. Ganges had its origin during the incarnation of Visnu as Vamana. When Vamana measured the three worids in three steps the nails on his left feet were raised high. They caused a pore on the upper side of the universe. Gariga, starting from the finger of Visnu's feet fell in heaven (Bhagavata) .


The famous Visnupadi, the flowing water (tirtha) of which washes away the sins of the people in the universe is the very same Ganges under discussion. For many yugas (eras) this river confined itself to the heights of the sky, otherwise called Visnupada. This particular spot is known as Dhruvamandala as it is here that Dhruva, son of King Uttanapada, does, his penance. The seven sages who constantly go round and round the Dhruvamandala take their bath in this holy river. The course of the river is thus: starting from Visnupada it falls on devayana glittering with crores of vimanas and therefrom it descends on Candramandala which it submerges. It follows its course again from there dividing itself into four tributaries called Sites, Caksus, Alakananda and Bhadra and then falls in Brahmaloka wherefrom it flows in all directions. Of the four tributaries Sites falls on the head of Mount Meru, flows down to Gandhamadana, then circling through Bhadrasva varsa falls into the eastern sea. Caksus falls on the peaks of mount Malyavan, flows through Ketumala and falls into the western sea. Alakananda falls on mount Hemakuta, flows through Bharata Varsa and falls into the southern sea. And Bhadra falls on the head of mount grfrgavan, flows through Uttarakuru and falls into the northern sea. Alakananda flows through Bharata Varsa and is regarded as the most sacred of the four tributaries.


Gariga which flowed through heaven fell on the earth after thousands of years of its origin. (Bhagavata, Pancama, Skandha, Chapter 17) .


2) Why Carigd became Siva's consort. Mahavisnu was once engaged at Vaikuntha in a pleasant talk with his wives, Laksmi, Sarasvati and Ganges when Gariga cast lustful eyes on Visnu, who, behind the backs of the other two wives returned the lustful glances. Sarasvati could not put up with that situation for a long time. Therefore, she got up from her seat and beat Ganges. Laksmi tried to restrain Sarasvati lest the quarrel should become fiercer. Angered at this intervention Sarasvati cursed that Laksmi be born on earth. Ganges got angry that innocent Laksmi was thus cursed, and she in her turn cursed that Sarasvati be born as a river on earth. Sarasvati did not take the curse lying down, but cursed that Ganges also be born as a river on earth and take upon herself the sins of the whole world. When all the three wives of Visnu got themselves thus into trouble he told them as follows : "Everything has happened as it should have happened. Laksmi may go to the earth and be born in the home of Dharmadhvaja and grow up as his daughter, but not from the womb of his women. There you will purify the three worlds after which you will be born as the plant called tulasi, and be married by an asura called 8ankhacuda, who will be born as a part of me. And, after that you will be turned into a sacred river called Padmesvati, and leaving the river on earth your divine form will return to Vaikuntha." And, to Ganges Visnu said as follows : "You will go to earth as a holy river to wash off the sins of people there. A king called Bhagiratha will be leading you to earth, and you will, therefore, be known as Bhesgirathi also. And, you remain there on earth as the wife of the ocean of King Santanu. Your divine form. will return to mount Kailessa as the consort of Siva." As for Sarasvati, Visnu asked her to be born as a river on earth, her divine form ultimately returning to Satyaloka and then becoming the consort of Brahma.


And, thus it was that Laksmi became the consort of Mahadisnu, Ganges of Siva and Sarasvati of Brahma. (Devi Bhesgavata, Navama Skandha).


3) Gangd born on earth due to the curse of Brahmd. Mahabhisak, an emperor of the Iksvesku dynasty, went to ~atyaloka after he had attained heaven, to worship Brahma. Ganges too happened to be there. In the devotional atmosphere at Satyaloka a casual breeze removed Ganges's clothes slightly from position, and Mahesbhisak then cast a lustful glance at her which she also returned. Brahma, who was observing this exchange of love got angry and cursed that Mahesbhisak be born as a King on earth and Ganges as his wife. Ganges' prayed for redemption from the curse, and Brahma told her that she would regain her old status after she had delivered the Astavasus. As the consequence of Brahma's cure Mahalbhisak was born as ~g;ing Santanu in the solar dynasty on earth and he married Ganges. (Adi Parva, Chapters 96 and 97).


4) Bhagfratha brought-down Gafga on earth. King Sagara of the solar dynasty had two wives called Sumati (Vaidarbhi) and Keg ini (Saibyes). A son called Asamanjasa was born to Keg ini, and 60,000 princes were born to Sumati. Sagara drove out of the country Asamajflasaa, who turned out to be an enemy of the people. The 60,000 sons of Sagara also proved to be a menace to the world, and the Devas approached Brahma for protection from the menace. He assured the Devas that a sage called Kapila will destroy the 60,000 evil fellows.


During the above period of time Sagara performed an Agvamedha Yajfia, and his sons went round the earth with the sacrificial horse. But, when they. reached the sea-shore the horse disappeared. When the sons complained about it to their father, Sagara, he asked them to look out for the horse in every part of the world and bring it back. Not finding it anywhere on earth they dug a hole and entered Pestesla, where they saw Sage Kapila absorbed in meditation and the missing horse tied to a pole near the sage. (It was Indra who had carried away the horse and tied it there). The sons of Sagara, believing that it was Kapila who had stolen the horse were about to attack the sage when he opened his eyes, and they were reduced to ashes in the fire of Kapila's eyes.


His sons having not returned even after a long time Sagara asked his grandson Aritgumesn to seek them out, and after an extensive search he saw Kapila at Pestesla. Aif:umesn pleased Kapila with laudatory phrases and the latter returned to him the sacrificial horse. Kapila also pronounced the blessing that the grandson of Aritsumesn would perform the purificatory rites of Sagara's sons by bringing down Gangs to earth from heaven. Amsumesn returned to the palace with the horse and the agvamedha was duly concluded.


From AthWmesn was born Dilipa and from him Bhagiratha. On becoming King, Bhagiratlia handed over the reins of government to his ministers and began efforts to bring down Ganges to earth. He did tapas for thousand years on the slopes of the Himalayas when Ganges asked him to please Siva first as he alone could face her (Ganges) fall on the earth. Accordingly he pleased Siva by his penance and Siva agreed to receive Ganges on his head. With a terrific noise Gaftga came down on Siva's head. The haughty Ganges wanted to carry down Siva also to Pestesla. Realising this ambition of her Siva blocked her passage with the result that she wandered about in Siva's matted hair for many years without finding an outlet. Bhagiratha again did tapas and pleased Siva who shook his matted head and made fall some water therefrom on earth. The water fell into Bindusaras, and flowed in seven tributaries, the first three, Hladini, Pesvani and Nalini towards the east, the next three, Sucaksus, Sites and Sindhu towards the west and the seventh tributary followed Bhagiratha. In this manner they progressed a great distance till they reached the esgrama of the sage Jahnu, and the haughty Ganges flooded the esgrama. The sage got enraged at this and drank up Ganges. But Bhagiratha pleased the sage who then let out Ganges through his ears. Thenceforth Ganges came to be called jeshnavi also. Ganges again followed Bhagiratha to Pestesla and made the sons of Sagara attain salvation by purifying them with her waters. (Valmiki Ramayana, Bala Kesnda, Cantos 43 and 44 ; Brahmanda Puresna, Chapter 97 ; Devi Puresna, Dvitiya Skandha; Drones Parva, Chapter 60 ;Anusessana Parva, Chapter 4 and Vana Parva, Chapter 109) .


5) Ganges flowed into the sea. After the purificatory rites of the sons of Sagara were over, Bhagiratha conducted Ganges to the sea and with its waters the sea became full. , (Vanes Parva, Chapter 109, Verses 18-21) .


6) Gangs set on the thighs of Pratfpa. Ganges once fell in love with Pratipa, father of Santanu, and set on his right thigh when he (Pratipa) was doing penance on the banks of the Ganges for a son. Pratipa did not agree to Ganges's proposal that he should marry her and told her thus: "the right thigh is for the children and daughters-in-law to sit on and the left thigh for the wife; therefore, you be my son's wife."


Then Pratipa called his son gantanu and told him


"Sometime back a divine woman came to me and I promised to wed her to you. Therefore, if any divine woman approaches you for a son you must accept her, and whatever she may do you must not object to that...". Not long after this Pratipa crowned Santanu King and left for the forest, (Adi Parva, Chapter 97) .


7) Astavasus and Gahga. While the wife of Dyau, one of the Astavasus (eight Vasus) was roaming about in the forest she saw Nandini (the divine cow) grazing with her calf near the essrama of Vasistha, and she desired to have the cow to be presented to her intimate friend Jitavati, the daughter of King Us inara. She informed her husband, Dyau about this desire of hers, and Dyau told his relations about it. Next day the A stavasus, in the absence of Vasistha at the a< rama, stole off Nandini and her calf. When Vasistha returned to the asrama the cow and calf were missing, and he divined the reason for it with his divine eyes. He cursed that the Astavasus be born as men on earth, and when they prayed for redemption from the curse Vasistha told them that they would be born as men within one year from that day, die at once and return to heaven At the same time the sage said that Dyau alone, who took the leading part in stealing the cow, would live on earth for a longer period before he returned to heaven. (The reputed Bhisma was this Dyau). The Astavasus set out for the earth to be born as men and on their way they met Ganges and told her about their curse etc. Ganges also told them about her curse, and permitted them to be born in her womb. (Adi Parva, Chapter 99) .


8) Ganges became the wife of gantanu and the Astavasus were born. Once while hunting on the banks of the Ganges Santanu saw a beautiful maiden and they fell in love with each other. She agreed to become his wife on the condition that he would not oppose whatever she said. Santanu agreed to it and married her. Soon after a child was born to them and in the very presence of Santanu, she threw the child into the Ganges. As per previous condition Santanu kept mum at this. She threw into the river the seven Astavasus, who were born to her in succession. When she was about to throw the last eighth of the Astavasus (Dyau) into the river Santanu prevented her. She got angry at this and disappeared with the child. (Adi Parva, Chapter 98) .


9) Santanu got back the son. Thirtytwo years after, Santanu went hunting again on the banks of the Ganges where he saw the river obstructed in its course with arrows by a handsome boy.. Santanu did not recognise that the boy was his son, who had been named Devavrata by Ganges. Devavrata disappeared after throwing Santanu into an illusion by his magic power. All of a sudden a doubt dawned in his mind whether the boy was his own son, and he called out to Ganges to show him the boy. Ganges appeared with her son with beautiful ornaments on him and spoke to Santanu thus: "This is Devavrata, the eighth son whom you entrusted to me. He has mastered everything in archery from Vasistha, and he is Dyau (the vasu) son of Angiras reborn. You may please take charge of him." After saying this she returned to heaven. (Adi Parva, Chapter 100) .


10) Ganges and Subrahmanya. (See under Subrahmanya) .


11) Gafiga and Bhisma. (See under Bhisma) .


12) Greatness (divine nature) of Ganges. Mahablharata has (Anusasana Parva, Chapter 26,), the following on the greatness of Ganga. If, after death, the bones of the dead are deposited


in Ganges the departed will attain heaven. Even if one had sinned throughout his life he would attain Visnupada (heaven) if he worshipped Ganges. Bathing in the Gaiiga is as beneficial as performing hundred yajfias. As long as the bones of one remain in the waters of the Gafiga so long will he occupy an honourable seat in heaven. He who has come in contact with its water will shine forth as the sun devoid of all darkness. Places which are not favoured by its waters will become barren like night without the moon and trees without flowers. Gaiiga water is snore than enough to satisfy living things in all the three worlds. He who does penance standing on one leg for thousand years, and he who gives up his body in the waters of the Ganges are on a par with each other. God attaches more importance to him who has fallen into the Ganges than to him, who has performed tapas hanging by his head for a thousand years. He who smears the sand on the banks of the Gaiiga on his body will get the lustre and ,glow of the devas, and he, who smears the sand on his head will shine forth like the Sun. All the sins of those on whom has blown the air which had come in contact with Ganges water will be-swept away. It should be known that Ganges water can wash off all sins and purify mortals. The Agni Purana (Chapter 110) has the following on this subject.


Through whatever places the Ganges flows those places become sublime and sacred. Ganges is the refuge of all created beings who aspire for the final good. If Ganges is worshipped daily it will save families both on the mother's and the father's side from evil fate. To drink Ganges water is better than. the observance of a thousand lunar months. If one worships Ganges for a month one will derive all the benefits of having performed all the yajfias. Even the blind (the ignorant) who worship Ganges, will attain equal status with the devas. The sight of Ganges, contact with its waters and drinking Ganges water will purify people in thousands and lakhs.


13) Gariga and Radhd. Ganges is Radha and Krsna liquidified into water. Once in goloka Radhadevi attempted- to drink Ganges dry, who, terror-stricken, hid herself at the feet of Sri Krsna, and the whole world experienced difficulties due to non-availability of water. Sri Krsna came to know of the situation and made Gafiga appear again on earth. (Devibhagavata, Navama Skandha).


14) Symbols and vehicle of Gangd. Ganges, white in colour rests on makaramatsya (a variety of fish) holding in her hands a pot and lotus flowers. (Agni Purana, Chapter 50) .


15) Synonyms of Gangd used in the Mahdbharata. Akasaanga, Bhagirathasutes, Bhagirathi, Sailaresjasuta, aivasuta, Devanadi, Haimavati, Jahnavi, Jahnukanya, Samudramahisi, Tripathaga, Tripathagamini.


16) Synonyms of Ganges.


Ganges visnupadi jahnutanaya suranimnages / Bhagirathi tripathaga Trisrota bhismasurapi // (Ganges, Visnupadi jahnutanaya, 'Suranimnaga, Bhagirathl, Tripathaga, Trisrota, Bhismasu). (Amarakosa).




GA.RGADVAR.A (M) . The place or locality in the IndoGangetic plane where the river Ganges falls from the Himalayas. This place is known as Haridvara also. arHidvara has an epic importance.




(1) It was here that King Pratipa did tapas. (Adi Parva, Chapter 97, Verse 1).


(2) Sage Bharadvaja had stayed on the banks of the Ganga, at Haridvara. (Adi Parva, Chapter 129, Verse




(3) Arjuna visited Haridvara during his tour or Pilgrimage. (Adi Parva, Chapter 213).


(4) This is the entrance to heaven. A bath here in the Kotitirtha is as beneficial as the Purdarika Y ajna.


(Vana Parva, Chapter 34, Verse 27) .


(5) Sage Agastya and his wife Lomapada once did tapas here. (Vana Parva, Chapter 97, Verse 11) .


(6) It was here that Siva appeared to jayadratha, who did tapas. (Vana Parva 72, Verse 24) .


(7) Daksaprajapati had once performed tapas at Kanakha1a in Haridvara. (Salya Parva, Chapter 38, Verse 27).


(8) Those who bathe at Kusavarta, Vilvaka, Nilaparvata and Kanakhala in Haridvara will attain heaven. (Anusasana Parva, Chapter 25, Verse 13) .


(9) Bhisma did the funeral rites of his father at the mouth of the Ganga. (AnuSasana Parva, Chapter 34, Verse 11) .


(10) Dhrtarastra, Gandhari, Kunti and others died in wild fire in the forest at Gangadvara, and Yudhisthira conducted their funeral rites there itself. (A~:ramavasika Parva, Chapter 39, Verse 14).


GAIGAHRADA (M) . A sacred place on the limits of Kuruksetra. There is a terribly deep whirlpool of the river Ganges here and that depth of the river is considered to be equivalent to three crores of sacred places.


(Vana Parva, Chapter 83, and Anusasana Parva, Chapter 25)


GANIGAMAHADVARA (M) . The particular spot on the Himalayan peak wherefrom Ganga starts. Those who go there die in ice-falls. Only Nara and Narayana have crossed this place. (Udyoga Parva, Chapter 111, Verse 16).


GANGASAGARASANIGAMAM. A sacred tirtha, a bath in which is as beneficial as the performing of ten Asvamedha yajfias. (Vana Parva, Chapter 35, Verse 4) .


GANGASARASVATISAMGAMA (M). A sacred tirtha at Prayaga. Those who bathe in this tirtha will attain heaven. (Vana Parva, Chapter 48, Verse 38) .


GANGAYAMUNASAMGAMA (M) . A sacred tirtha in Prayaga. Bathing in the tirtha is as beneficial as performing ten Asvamedha yajfias. (Vana Parva, Chapter 85, Verse 4) .


GANGEYA I. See under Bhisma.


GANGEYA II. Subrahmanya . (See under Subrahmanya).


GANGODBHEDA (M) . A sacred place where fasting for three nights will give the results of a Vajapeya yajfia, and he who fasts here will become one with the universal soul. (Vana Parva, Chapter 84, Verse 5) .


GANITA A. ViSvadeva, who used to calculate the course of time and ages. (Anusasana Parva, Chapter 91,

Verse 36) .


GARBHA. A son of Bharata, the son of Dusyanta. Suhoira, Suhota, Gaya, Garbha and Suketu were the five sons of Bharata. (Agni Purana, Chapter 278) .


GARBHA (M). The Puranas have described the views of sages about the origin of atman in woman's womb. Asitamahamuni stated the following about the birth of


a child to King janaka. (Brahmanda Purana. Chapter 48) . Of the seven elements in the human body, viz., Rasa, Rakta (blood), Mamsa (flesh) , Medas (fost), Asthi (bone), Majja (marrow) and Sukla (seminal fluid) the last one, Sukla, is the most valuable. Brahmabija (the seed for production) is contained in Sukla. From the food we consume, blood and the seminal fluid take their nutrition. The Sukla emitted during coitus enters the womb of the woman propelled as it were by Krostavayu. It takes only one night for the Sukla to get inextricably mixed with blood in the womb. In that mixing if the proportion of blood is higher, the child born will be girl, and if the proportion of 8ukla is higher, the offspring will be boy. If blood and Sukla are mixed exactly in equal proportions the child will be `neutral', neither girl nor boy. During the first month of pregnancy the child will be in liquid form. In the second, it solidifies due to the mixing and interplay of heat, cold, air, etc. During the third, holes for eye, ear, etc. become ready and the vein system is formed. In the fourth, head, hands and legs of the child are formed, and it is during this period that the prospective mother develops certain desires. If those desires are not satisfied the child may be born with physical deformities. During the fifth month the hips and bones develop. The various organs get firmer and stronger gradually and fingers appear during the sixth month. It is during the sixth month that hairs on the head and body appear and feelings and emotions originate in the mind. During the seventh month the ten vayus (winds) on the basis of the nervous system are released, and the child experiences glimpses of its previous existence, and ability to feel pain also is there. During the ninth month due to the force of the wind which eflects actual delivery the child gets head down in the womb, and during the tenth month it emerges out of the womb. The child loses its memory about the past because of its contact with the female organ and external wind.


According to the Agni Purana the process is a little different


When jiva (the soul) has entered the womb for rebirth it remains in fluid form during the first month. During the second month it solidifies; in the third month the organs begin to develop, in the fourth month skin, flesh and bones appear, in the fifth month hairs appear, in the sixth month mind is produced, in the seventh month the child will begin to feel pain. The body is covered by a skin (Garbhacarma) and both hands are held above the head in saluting position. If the child is a female it lies in the left side of the mother's womb, if a male on the right and if `neutral' in the middle of it. From the seventh month the child begins to experience the taste of foods consumed by the mother. During the eighth and ninth month there would be great emotional excitements and upsurges. If the mother suffered from chronic diseases the child also would inherit it. When pregnancy is matured thus, certain winds lead the child down the womb and it gets out through the female organ.


The child inherits its skin, flesh and heart from the mother. The sex organ, marrow, excretion, sweet and belly are inherited from the father. Head, the nervous


system and sukla are the contributions of the atman. (Agni Purina, Chapter 369) .


GARDABHI. A son of Visvamitra who was a brahmavadi. (Chapter 4, Anusasana Parva, M.B.).




1) Genealogy. Descended from Visnu thus ;-BrahmaAtri-Candra-Budha-Pururavas-Ayus-Nahusa-Puru Janamejaya-Pracinvan-Pravira-Namasyu-Vitabhaya -SunduBahuvidha -Samyati -Rahovadi - Raudrasva -MatinaraSanturodha -Dusyanta -Bharata-Suhotra -Suhota -GalaGarda-Suketu-Brhatksatra-Garga.


2) Birth. Brhaspati once approached, on the crest of a wave of lust, Mamata, his brother's wife who was pregnant then. The child from the mother's womb said `no' to the move. But, Brhaspati cursed the child and had his own way with 1Vlamata. Thus two children developed in her womb. Just after delivering the children the mother went away leaving the child by Brhaspati behind. The Devas took charge of the forsaken child and roamed him Bharadvaja. Ultimately they handed over the child (Bharadvaja) to king Bharata, the famous son of Dusyanta. Children had already been born to Bharata by his three wives, but as all of them were found to be immoral the mothers themselves killed them. It was at such a juncture that Bharata got Bharadvaja as adopted son. (Bharadvaja is known by another name also, Vitatha). From Vitatha was born Manyu, from Manyu Brhatksetra from Brhatksetra Jaya and from Jaya Garga. The famous Rantideva was the grandson of Nara, (the brother of Garga) and son of Sarixkrti. A son called Sani was born to Garga after which he took to Sannyasa. (Bhagavata, Dasama Skandha, Chapters 20 and 21) .


3) Tadaaaguru. In course of time Garga became preceptor of the Yadavas. Sri Krsna and Balabhadrarama who had returned to Mathura from Ambadi were sent to sage Sandipani in obedience to the advice of Garga. (Bhagavata, Navama Skandha).


4) Gnrga and Nrucukunda. Garga once visited Mucukunda, son of Mandhata at his palace, and very much pleased with the devoted reception accorded to him blessed Mucukunda that one day he would see Sri Krsna in person. It was according to this blessing that 1Vlucukunda, while asleep once in a cave had a sight of Krsna. (See under Mucukunda).


5) Importance of Garga. A number of reputed sage visited Sri Rama on his return to Ayodhya from the forest. Amongst them were present Kaus ika, Yavakrita, Raibhya, Kanva and Garga with their numerous disciples. ( Uttara Ra.mayana).


6) Garga, a scholar in astronomy. There is a place called Gargasrota on the banks of ricer Sarasvati. Gax=ga did tapas here and discovered some principles of astronomy such as the path of planets, stars etc. He was also the chief astronomer in the assembly of emperor Prthu. (anti Parva, Chapter 59, Verse 111 ).


7) Other information. (1) While the great war was raging Garga visited Kurukgetra and advised Drona to end the war. (Drona Parva, Chapter 19) .


(2) He advised king Visvavasu about eternity. (anti Parva, Chapter 318, Verse 49) .


(3) He spoke about the greatness of the world ( Visvamahima) to Yudhisthira. (Anusasana Parva, Chapter 18).


GARGASROTA. See under Garga, Para 6.


GARGAYANI. See under Gurupararixpara.


GARGA. A celebrated brahmavadini born in the family of Garga.


GARGYA I. (TRIJATA) GARGA. A famous sage.


1) Birth. He was one of the sons of Visvamitra. (Sloka 55, Chapter 4, Anusasana Parva). (For genealogy see under Visvamitra). He became gradually the priest of Gudavas. He has written a famous book called Gangasmrti. Valmiki Ramayana mentions that Gargya is known as Trijata also.


2) How he became prosperous. Sage Gargya had many children. It was while he was staying in the forest with his wife and children that Sri Rama came to that forest for Vanavasa. The news of the exile of Sri Rama spread like wild-fire and many Brahmins flocked to the place and Sri Rama gave them immense riches. Wife of Gargya heard the news only late and as soon as she heard the same she called her husband from the fields where he was working and taking away from him the implements sent him post-haste to the place of Sri Rama. Trijata as soon as he came to the presence of Rama told him the purpose of his visit. Huge herds of cows were then grazing on the banks of the Yamuna river. Sri Rama told Gargya to take a stump and throw it with all his strength. He did so and Sri Rama gave him all the cows grazing up to the place where the stump fell. It was a big lot and Gargya became prosperous from that day onwards. (Sarga 32, Ayodhya Kanda, Valmiki Raxnayana).


3 ) Gargya's precepts on Dharma. The following are the precepts laid down by Gargya on Dharma. (1) Be interested always on entertaining your guests, ( 2 ) Do not eat meat, (3) Do not give injury to cows and Brahmins, (4) Perform yajna with a pure mind and pure body. (M.B. Anusasana Parva, Chapter 127) .


4) Gdrgya's dace in the line of preceptors. Vyasa expounded the Vedas to Vedamitra, Saubhari and Sakalya. gakalya taught what he learnt to Vatsyayana, Maudgaiya, 8a1i, Adisisira, Gokhali and Yatukarna. Yatukarya taught Nirukta to Baskala, Kraunca,Vaitala, and Viraja. Baskala combined all the other branches together and made `Balakhilya~ akha' and taught it to Balayini, Gargya and Sarnsara. The Kgvedacaryas are those from Vyasa to Saxixsara. (Bhagavata, DM ama Skandha).


5) Indrasabha and Gargya. Gargya was a shining member of the Indrasabha. (Sloka 18, Chapter 7, Sabha Parva, M.B.).


GARGYA II. See under Balaki.


GARGYA (M) . A place of habitation of ancient Bharata. This place was captured by Sri Krsna. (Chapter 11, Drona Parva).


GARHAPATI I. An agni ( fire) . (Sloka 6, Chapter 74 Adi Parva).


GARHAPATI II. One of the seven fathers. The seven fathers are: Vairajas, Agnisvaltas, Garhapatis, Somapas, Ekasrxigas, Caturvedas and Kalas. (Chapter 11, Sabha Parva, M.B.).


GARHASTYA. The Grhastha,.rama a stage in life when you live with your family as a house-holder. The true dharma of a householder is to live with what he gets by doing the duty allotted to him. He should feed pilgrims and should not appropriate to himself what belongs to others unless and until it is given to him. (Sloka 3, Chapter 31, Adi Parva).


GARISTHA. A sage worshipping Indra in his assembly. (Sabha Parva, Chapter 7, Verse 13) .


CARUDA. King of birds.


1) Genealogy. Descended from Visnu thus:- Brahma. -Marici--Kasyapa-Garuda.


2) Birth. Ka,;yapa, grandson of Brahma and son of Marici married the eight daughters of Daksa called Aditi, Diti, Danu, Kalika, Tamra, Krodhavasa, Manu and Anala. And to Tamra five daughters were born, viz. Kraufici, Bhasi, Syeni, Dhrtarastri and 8uki. Out of the five women Kraufici became mother of the owls, Bhasi delivered the bhasas (types of birds) and from Syeni were born vultures and kites. Hamsa, Kalaharf:sa, Koka etc. are children of Dhrtarastri. From Suki was born Nala and from Nala, 'Vinata; Aruna and Garuda were the two sons born to Vinata. (Valmiki Ramayana, Aranyakanda, Canto 15).


There is a story in the Mahabharata about the birth of Aruna and Garuda. Kasyapa who was much pleased with the service of Vinata and Kadru asked them to select any boon they desired. Kadru chose to have a thousand nagas as her children while Vinata chose to have two sons more powerful and heroic than the thousand sons of Kadru. After granting them the boon Kasyapa retreated into the forest.


After some time Kadru laid thousand eggs and Vinata two eggs. Both of them kept their eggs in hot pots. In the 500th year the eggs of Kadru hatched and thousand serpents of various kinds emerged out of them. But Vinata's eggs did not hatch yet, and the sight of Kadru playing with her children pained Vinata much. She, therefore, broke open one of her eggs in secret, and a half-grown child stepped out of at. That child was Aruna. Aruna got angry that Vinata forced open the egg prematurely. He told her that as punishment thereof she would become a slave of Kadru. But, Aruna granted her redemption from the curse thus: After another 500 years the remaining egg of yours will hatch and A son. endowed with exceptional power and prowess will be born to you. He will liberate you from slavery." After telling his mother so much Aruna rose to the sky where he became the charioteer of the Sun. (Adi Parva, Chapter 16. See also Para 6 infra).


After 500 years the egg broke itself open and out came Garuda with blazing effulgence, and he rose up in the sky. His body glowed like the sun. The Devas who got themselves dimmed by his, effulgence asked Agnideva the reason therefor. Agnideva told them about the birth of Garuda and also that he was equally effulgent as himself (Agnideva) Then all of them went to Garuda and lavished on his head all possible blessings, and baruda, as requested by them, controlled his effulgence and returned to his mother. (Adi Parva, Chapter 23) .


3) Slavery of Vinata: The churning of the Milk-ocean was done before Garuda was born. Indra got a horse named Uccaih~ravas from the Ocean of Milk. Between Kadru and Vinata a dispute arose as regards the colour of the horse's tail, Kadru saying that it was black while Vinata asserted that it was white. They further agreed to test the colour the next day, betting that she who was proved to be wrong would become the slave of the victor. As the naga sons of Kadru hung on to the tail of the horse the tail appeared to be black and Vinata lost the bet and became Kadru's slave.


It was at this juncture that Garuda was born, and he felt highly mortified to find his mother working as a slave of Kadru.


Kadru and her naga sons once ordered Vinata to carry them to the naga residence in the middle of the ocean, called Ramaniyaka (Ramanam). Accordingly Vinata carrying Kadru on her shoulders and Garuda carrying Kadru's sons on his shoulders rose up in the sky. But, Garuda did not relish the slavish works and he, carrying with him the nagas, flew up to the sun's orbit. The naga children fainted due to the excessive heat. But, on the request of Kadru Indra sent heavy rain and the nagas regained consciousness. By then they had reached Ramaniyaka island.


4) Attempt at freeing Vinatd from thraldom. Garuda, extremely pained at the pitiable plight of his mother,.one day asked Kadru what price she and her children demanded for freeing Vinata from slavery, and Kadru demanded Amrta from Devaloka as the price. G'aruda decided to get it and informed his mother about his decision to fly to Devaloka. But, what about food till he reached Devaloka? Vinata solved the problem by advising Garuda to eat the nisadas he will meet on his way to Devaloka at the island called Nisadalaya, at the same time specially forbidding him from eating on any account, brahmins who might be there, at Nisadalaya. How to distinguish brahmins from others, queried Garuda, and his mother replied by pointing out that the bralhmin will burn the throat of him who tries to eat him, like fire. Then Vinata blessed her son that his wings would be protected by Vayu, the lower half of his body by sun and moon, the rest of the body by the Vasus and the head by Agni. She also promised to wait there till her son returned. 5) Garuda to Devaloka. After saluting his mother Garuda set out on his quest for Amrta. All the fourteen worlds shook at the lashing of his wings. He reached Nisadalaya, where while consuming whole lots of Nisadas a brahmin and his wife also happened to get into his throat. Garuda felt their presence immediately in his throat and requested them to get out of his mouth. Accordingly they got out and also blessed Garuda, who continued on his journey.


Next Garuda reached the forest where his father Kasyapa was engaged in tapas. He told him about his mission and requested him for something to eat. Kasyapa replied thus:- "You see a pool wherein an elephant and a tortoise are living for long as enemies. Long ago two brothers Vibhavasu and Supratika quarrelled over their paternal wealth and at the height of it"Vibhavasu cursed Supratika to become an elephant when Supratika pronounced the counter curse that Vibhavasu should turn out to be a tortoise. You, my son Garuda may eat that elephant and tortoise. May your journey for Amrta be crowned with success.


Now, Garuda after saluting his father, flew up in the sky carrying in his beak the elephant and the tortoise from the pool. As trees were falling uprooted due to the terrific vibrations caused by the lashing of his wings Gar'uda did not find a convenient place to sit down to eat his food. While continuing the journey Garuda saw a big tree, its branches spread out in a circumference of a hundred yojana,s. But, as soon as Garuda set foot on look with those eyes was enough to poison  a branch of the tree it (branch) crumbled down. On  that broken branch were the sages called Balakhilyas  doing tapas hanging their heads down. Fearing that the  sages might fall down Garuda continued his flight  holding in his beak the torn branch of the tree, But he  could not find a safe place to deposit the branch with  the sages. So he came again to Mount Gandharnadana  and saw Kasyapa, who apologised to the Balakhilyas  on behalf of his son and also explained to them about  his mission. The Balakhilyas were pleased and they left  the place for the Himalayas. As advised by Kasyapa  Garuda deposited the branch of the tree on an unin  habited mountain peak. Garuda ate the elephant and  the tortoise there, and therefrom flew to Devaloka (Adi  Parva, Chapter 29, 30) .  6) Bdlakhilyas cursed Indra. Even before the arrival of  Garuda ill omens began appearing in Devaloka. Indra  asked Brhaspati for explanation about the ill omens.  Brhaspati with his divine eyes saw Garuda approach  ing Devaloka for Amrta, and he told Indra about  Garuda born out of the powers of the tapas of Kasyapa  and the Balakhilyas. Ire also told that such a fate as  the present one befe1l Indra due to a curse of the  Balakbilyas. Indra and the other Devas stood guard  over the pot of Amrta ready to repel all possible  attacks.  There was a reason for Garuda's birth from the powers  of the tapas of the Balakhilyas, and also for Indra to  be put into the present predicament due to the curse  of the Balakhilyas. Kasyapaprajapati, a long time ago,  began a terrific yajfia for a son, and Indra and the  Balakhilyas who numbered. more than 60,000 were  deputed by Kasyapa to collect firewood for the yajfia.  The Balakhilyas were only of the size of a thumb, and  Indra who very easily collected all the firewood needed  for the yajfia 1aughed at the tiny Balakhilyas who were  carrying small twigs etc. for firewood. Angered at the  insult ,the Balakhilyas- removed themselves to another  place nearby and began a yajna directed against Indra  who alarmed at it sought the help of Kasyapa who then  held peace talks with the Balakhilyas. They transferred  their yagasakti (yajfiic powers) also to Kasyapa and  agreed to be satisfied with the condition that as the  result of Kasyapa's yajfia a son should be born to him,  who (the son) would defeat Indra. Thus, for the time  being Indra escaped from the wrath of the Balakhi1yas.  After the yajfia was over Vinata came to Kasyapa and  he blessed her with a son wishing that he should be  come exceptionally strong and powerful, and that was  Garuda. (Adi Parva, Chapter 30). 

7) Amrtakalasdpaharanam. (The pot of nectar carried  away). Garuda approached the pot of nectar, and  Vis` vakarma who attacked him first was felled to the  ground. The dust storm raised by the waving of  Garuda's wings blinded everybody.' The Devas and  Indra, nay, even the sun and the Moon lined up  against Garuda, but he defeated them all, and entered  the particular place where the pot of nectar was kept.  Two terrific wheels were rotating round the pot and  they would cut into mince-meat anybody who tried to  lay hands on the pot and a machine circled the whee1s.  Below the wheels were two monstrous serpents with  glowing eyes and protruding tongues like flashes of  fire, and the serpents never closed their eyes. The very  anyone to death. Garuda blinded those eyes by raising a torrent of dust, pierced them in the middle with his beak and and through the hole, his body reduced to such a tiny shape, went nearer to the pot. He destroyed the wheels and the machine, and carrying the pot of nectar in his beaks rose to the sky shielding the light of the sun by his outspread wings. Mahavisnu, who became so much pleased with the tremendous achievements of Garuda asked him to choose any boon. Garuda requested Visnu that he should be made his (Visnu's) vehicle and rendered immortal without his tasting amrta. Both the boons were granted.  8) Garuda and Indra became friends. Indra hit with the Vajra (his special weapon) the wings of Garuda who was returning from Visnu. It did not wound his body, but a feather of his fell in the atmosphere. Everybody who saw the feather acclaimed Garuda as Suparna (he with the good wings). Indra was wonder-struck, and ht approached Garuda and requested that they should be friends in future and the pot of nectar be returned. Garuda replied that the nectar would be returned if he was granted the power to make nagas his food, and Indra blessed him that he would live by consuming nagas. And then Garuda told Indra thus : "I took this pot of amrta not for my own use. The nagas cheated my mother and made her a slave, and. she will be freed if only this pat of nectar is given to them (nagas). You may snatch off the pot from the nagas; I shall not  object to it."  Indra and Garuda thus became friends and the 'former followed Garuda on his way back home.  9) Garucia handed over the pot of am rta to the ndgas and Indra cheated them of it. Garuda handed over the pot of nectar to the nagas, who on the suggestion of the former placed the pot on darbha grass spread on the ground, Also, in accordance with Garuda's advice that they should take a purificatory bath before .tasting the amrta the nagas went out to have the bath, and in their absence Indra carried off the pot of nectar back to Devaloka. Failing to find the pot of nectar on their return from bath the aggrieved nagas licked the darbha on which the pot was placed with the result that their tongues were cloven into two. It was from that day onwards that the nagas became double-tongued (dviji.hvas). And, thus Garuda redeemed his mother from slavery. (Adi Parva, Chapter 34 ) . 

1.0) The fig tree which Garuda broke with- his beaks and La)ikd. It has been noted shave that Garuda on his way to Devaloka rested on a fig tree. That fig is called Subhadra in Valmiki Ramayana.  Ravana saw the fig tree around which sages were sitting and which bore marks made by Garuda sitting thereon. ( Valmiki Ramayana, Aranyakanda, Canto 35, Verse 26).  There is some connection between this tree and Laiaka. Garuda had, as directed by Kasyapa, deposited in the sea the branch of the tree on which the Balakhiivas hung in tapes and with which Garuda flew hither and thither fearing about the safety of the Balakhilyas. At the spot in the sea where the branch was deposited sprang up an island like the peak of a mountain. It was this island which in after years became reputed as Lanka. (Kathasaritsagara, Kathamukhalambaka' Tarariga 4) . 



11) Garuda, Saubhari and Kdliya. Garuda had always entertained great hatred against the nagas, and now Indra's permission having been obtained by him to eat the nagas fbr food, Garuda decided to launch a regular naga-hunting expedition. He began eating the nagas one by one. Alarmed at this the nagas planned for their security in a conclave, and approached Garuda with the proposal that one naga would go to him daily to serve as his food instead of his indiscriminate killing of them. Garuda accepted their proposal. After some time the nagas proposed to Garuda that they would conduct a sarpa-bali (sacrifice of serpents) and submit the food got out of the bali to him so that his nagahunting might be stopped for ever. Garuda agreed to this also. According to the new agreement daily one riaga began going to Garuda with the food got out of the bali.  Vinata, mother of Garuda, while she was working as the  slave of Kadru, one day went into the woods to collect  firewood for her mistress. In the terrible rain and  storm that ensued, Vinata lost her track and wandered  in the forest for many days before she could take shelter  in the asrama of a Sannyasin. The pious man felt sorry  for poor Vinata and blessed her that a son, who would  be able to win freedom for her would be born to her.  Garuda was the son thus born to her.  Before the birth of Garuda when Kasyapa and Vinata  were living together with their daughter Sumati the boy  sage Upamanyu, son of Sutapas, went to them and told  Kasyapa thus: "While touring round the earth I wor  shipped the pitrs at Gaya and I have been told that they  (Pitrs) would get redemption only in case I married and  became a father. 1, therefore, request you to please give  your daughter Sumati to me as wife. Vinata did not  But Kaliya alone did not agree to the programme as he relish this proposal. Upamanyu got angry at the re  did not recognise Garuda to be superior to him in jection of his offer and cursed Vinata saying that if  power. And, Garuda, who wanted to teach the haughty Sumati was given in marriage to any other brahmin boy  Kaliya a lesson challenged him to fight, and the fight she (Vinata) would die with her head broken into  took place in river Kalindi, Kaliya's abode. During pieces.  the fight the lashing of Garuda's wings raised the It was during this period when Vinata was in a fix  water in Kalindi up in the sky and it drenched the about the marriage of Sumati that Garuda was born to  sage Saubhari all over, who was performing tapas on her. He also thought over the problem and argued like  the banks of Kalindi. Saubhari cursed that the body this: the curse is only against a brahmin boy marrying  of Garuda be shattered into a thousand pieces if ever my sister Sumati; why not Sumati be given in marriage  he entered that area in future, and thenceforth the to a Ksatriya; but where to find an eligible Ksatriya  place became a prohibited area for Garuda. During boy? At this stage Vinata asked him to go and meet the  after years Kaliya was put up at this place. Sannyasin, who had promised her an illustrious son, in  the forest and this Sannyasin directed Garuda to Aurva,  for advice and guidance. When Garuda met Aurva and  sought his advice about the marriage of his sister, the  sage thought that the context offered a very good bride  to Sagara. And, according to Aurva's advice Sumati  was married to Sagara, and thus Garuda became re  lated to the Kings of the Solar dynasty. (Brahmanda  Pui rana, Chapters 16, 17 and 1$) . The Sixty thousand  sons born to Sagara by Sumad were reduced to ashes in  the fire which emanated from the eyes of Kapila. (See  Kapila). When Amsuman, the grandson of Sagara was  going around the world to find out these 60,000 sons he  met Garuda on the way, and it was he who advised that  the waters of Ganga should be brought down on earth  so that the dead sons of Sagara might get spiritual  redemption. (Valra-iki Ramayana, Balakanda, Chap  ter 41).  13) Garuda's conceit laid low. A very beAutifu1 daughter,  Gunakesi, was born to Matali, the charioteer of Indra.  In the course of his search for a suitable husband for  Gunakesi he came to Patalaloka in the company of  Narada, and there Matali selected a noble naga called  Sumukha as his prospective son-in-law. But a month  before Garuda had eaten Sumukha's father Cikara, and  he had also given notice to Sumukha that within a  month's time he too would be eaten.  Narada and Matali met Sumukha at the abode of his  grandfather Aryaka, who was very glad to marry his  grandson to Matali's daughter. But, the threat of  Garuda that he would eat Sumukha before the month  was over stared them all cruelly in their face. So, they  appealed to Indra for a solution to the problem, in the  presence of Mahavisnu. Indra gave an extension of life  to Sumukha and he wedded GunakesI. The marriage  enraged Garuda so much that he went to Indra's  A kadamba tree alone outlived the effect of the poison of Kaliya. The tree could outlive the deadly poison. because Garuda had rested on it on his way back from Devaloka with amrta. (Bhagavata dasama Skandha).


12) Relationship of Garuda with the kings of the solar dynasty. King Sagara of the solar dynasty was married to Sumati, the elder sister of Garuda, and there is a story behind the marriage.


There was once a king called Subahu in the solar dynasty. He married one Yadavi; but for many years they had no issues. Yadavi had become old by the time she conceived a child as the result of many yajnas etc. But, Subahu's other wives, viz. co-wives of Yadavi, did not like the prospects of Yadavi becoming a mother. They administered poison to, her with the result that Yadavi did not deliver in time, but continued as a pregnant woman for seven years: The sad couple, for their mental relief went into the forest and lived as disciples of a sage called Aurva. But Subahu died rather soon and Yadavi prepared herself to follow him in the funeral pyre. But, the sage Aurva prevented her from self immolation speaking to her thus : "You shall not act rashly. The child in your womb will become a famous emperor and rule over the whole world."


Yadavi yielded to the sage's advice and did not court death, and soon afterwards she delivered a son, and he was named Sagara, which meant "he who was affected by poison even while he was in the mother's womb. It was .this child who, in later years, became reputed as emperor Sagara.


Sagara married the elder sister of Garuda when he was living as a boy in Aurva's asrama, and there is a story behind the marriage, a story which related to the time when Garuda was not born.


assembly and insulted froth Indra and Visnu at which Visnu extended his right hand to Garuda asking him whether he could hold the hand. And, when Garuda placed Visnu's hand on leis head he felt as if the whole weight of the three worlds was put on the head. Garuda admitted his defeat. Mahavisnu thus laid low the conceit of Garuda. (Udyoga Parva, Chapter 105) .


14) Garuda helped Gilazra. Galava was a disciple of Visvamitra. Once Dharmadeva, to test Visvamitra, went to his asrama disguised as Vasistha and asked for food. As there was no ready-made food at the a: rams just then, Visvamitra naturally took some time to cook new food, and he went with it, steaming hot, in a plate to the guest. Saying that he would return within minutes and receive the food, the guest (Dharmadeva) left the place, and Vis'svamitra stood there with the plate in hand awaiting the return of the guest. He had to remain standing thus for one hundred years, and during this whole period it was Galava who stood there looking after his guru. When hundred years were completed Dharmadeva returned to Visvamitra and accepted his hospitality, and then only could the latter take some rest.


Visvamitra blessed Galava, and now it was time for him to leave the asrama. Though Visvamitra told that no gurudaksina (tuition fee) was required Galava persisted in asking him what fee or present he wanted. Vi~vamitra lost his temper and told Galava that if he was so very particular about gurudaksina, eight hundred horses all having the colour of moon, and one ear black in colour might be given as daksina. Galava stood there aghast at the above pronouncement of his preceptor, when Garuda happened to go over there and hear from Galava about his sad plight. Money was required to purchase horses, but Galava was penniless. At any rate Garuda with Galava on his back flew eastwards and reached Rsabhaparvata and they rested on a peak of it. There the Brahma woman; Sandili was engaged in tapas and she served them with food. After food Garuda spoke disparagingly about Sandili. Garuda and Galava slept that night on the floor, but when they woke up in the morning lo! Garuda was completely shed of his feathers. Garuda stood before Sandih, his head bent in anguish. kndili blessed Garuda, who then got back his old feathers.


Continuing their journey Garuda and Galava reached the palace of the very rich King, Yayati. Garuda introduced Ga.lava to Yayati, who found it difficult to get 800 horses for Galava. But, Y avati gave his daughter Madhavi to Gd1ava saying that .he might give her to any King and get money enough to purchase 800 horses. After thus showing the means to get money to Galava, Garuda returned home.


Galava gave Madhavi first to King Haryasva of Ayodhya, then to King Divodasa of Kas !and next to King Us inara of Bhoja and got from them two hundred horses each, and he submitted the horses and also Madhavi in lieu of the balance of two hundred horses to Visvamitra as daksina. A son called Astaka was born to Vigvamitra by Madhavi, who had been granted a boon that she would not lose her youth and beauty even though she lived with any number of people. (Udyoga-Parva Chapter 108) .


15) .Fight between Garuda and Airdvata. Sri Krsna once


went to Devaloka and plucked the Parijata flower from the garden bandana, and this led to a fight between Indra and Krsna in which Garuda also joined. Garuda directed his main attention on Airavata which, at his blows, fainted and fell down. (Harivadisa, Chapter 73) . 16) Defeated by Irdsuki. To churn the Milk-Ocean the Devas and Asuras decided to use Mount Mandara as the shaft and Vasuki as the rope to rotate the shaft. The attempts of the Devas, the Asuras and the Bhutaganas of Siva failed to uproot and bring with them the mountaih, when Garuda, at the instance of Visnu brought the mountain as easily as a kite carries a frog. Again, when others failed to bring Vasuki from nagaloka Garuda went and asked the naga chief to follow hire to the ocean of Milk. Vasuki replied that if his presence was so indispensab1e he must be carried over there. Then Garuda caught the middle part of Vasuki in his beak and rose in the air. But, even though Garuda rose beyond the horizon, when he looked down half of Vasuki still remained on the ground. Garuda then tried to fold Vasuki into two and carry it, but, again to no purpose. Disappointed and humiliated Garuda returned without Vasuki. Afterwards Vasuki was brought to the ocean of Milk by Siva's hand stretched down into Patala. (Kamba Ramayana, Yuddha Kanda).


17) 13hima went in search of the Saugandhika fower on account of Garuda. While, in the course of their exile in the forest, the Pandavas were put up at the asrama of maharsi Arstisena. Garuda picked up from the depths of the sea one day a riaga called Rddhiman, and due to the vibration caused .by the lashing of Garuda's wings Kalhara flowers from the garden of Kubera were flown to the feet of Pancali. She wore the fragrant flowers in her hair saying that if she were to have good flowers, wind had to bring them. Since there was a mild and veiled insinuation in that statement that Bhima was inferior to the wind the former did not appreciate that comment by Paneali. And so he rushed to Mount Gandhamadana to collect Kalhara flowers. (Vana Parva, Chapter 106).


18) Garuda saved Uparicaravasu. Once a controversy started between the Devas and the brahmins, the former advocating the use of goat's flesh in performing yajnas while the brahmins contended that grains were sufficient fox the purpose. Uparicaravasu, who arbitrated in the debate spoke in favour of the Devas, which the Brahmins did not like, and they cursed Vasu to fall from the sky into the pits of the earth. This curse was countered by the Devas blessing him that as long as Uparicaravasu remained on earth he would not feel hungry and that he would regain his old form due to the blessings of Mahavisnu. Vasu prayed to Visnu, who sent Garuda to the'former, and Garuda carried Vasu to the sky on his wings. Thus, Vasu became again Uparicaravasu. (anti Parva, Chapter 338) .


1-9) Other information about Garuda. (1) A danava once stole away the crown- of Sri krsna who was on a visit to Mount Gomanta. Garuda retrieved it from the danava and returned it to Krs.-,ia. (Bhagavata, Dwama Skandha).


(2) The monkeys who searched for Sita visited the house of Garuda also. (Valmlki Ramayana, Kiskindha Kanda, Canto 40, Verse 39) .


(3) Garuda had married the four daughters of Daksaprajapati. (Bhagavata, 6th Skandha).


(4) He had a son named Kapota. (Udyoga Parva, Chapter 101) ,


(5) During the Rama-Ravana war Laksmana, Sugriva and all the monkeys swooned hit by the nagastra of Indrajit. Sri kama then thought of Garuda, who at once came down on earth and bit away the nagapasa. (Kamba Ramayana Yuddhakana).


(6) Garuda was present at the' birth-day celebrations of Arjuna. (Adi Parva, Chapter 122, Verse 50).


(7) At the birth of Subrahmanya Garuda submitted his own son, Mayura, as a present. (Anusasana Parva, Chapter 86, Verse 21) .


20) Synonyms for Garuda.


Garutman Garudas Tarksyo Vainateyah Khagegvarah/ Nagantako Visnurathah Suparnah Pannagasanah. /j (Garutman, Garuda, Tarksya, Vainateya, Khage::vara, Nagantaka, Visnuratha, Suparna, Pannaga:`ana. (Amarakor' a) .


21) Names used in the Mahabhdrata to represent Garuda.


Arunanuja, Bhujagari, Garutman, Kaayapeya, Khagarat, Paksiraja, Patagapati, Patagesvara, Suparna; Tarksya, Vainateya, Vinatanandavardhana, Vinatasunu, Vinatasuta, Vinatatmaja. (For story regarding how Garuda stopped eating nagas see under jimutavahana) .


GARUDAPURANA. One of the eighteen Mahapuranas. This is believed to be a narration to Garuda by Mahavisnu. There are eight thousand slokas in it. There is an opinion that only the Tarksyakalpa is of Visnu. The theme of the Pura~ia is the birth of Garuda from Brahmanda. If this Purana is given as a gift it should be given along with the image of a swan in gold. (Chapter 272; Agni Purana).


GARUDAVYIJHA. A system of arranging soldiers on the battlefield in the shape of Garuda.


GATITALL A warrior of Skandadeva. (Salya Parva, Chapter 45, Verse 67 ).


GATRA. A maharsi, the son of Vasistha, who had by fJrjja seven Rsis called Rajas, Gatra, U_rdhvabahu. Savana, Alaghu, ~ukra and Sutapas. (Agni Purana, Chapter 20) .


LAURA (M). A mountain in the KuZa island. (Bhisma Parva, Chapter 12, Verse 4) .


GAURAMUKHA. A son of sage Samika. It was Samlka's son Srngi, who cursed Pariksit to death by snake-bite. (See Pariksit). &riigi cursed that Pariksit, who had thrown a dead snake on the neck of his father while in meditation, -would be bitten to death by snake within seven days.- Srngi sent word about the curse' through his disciple Gauramukha to Pariksit. (Adi Parva, Chapter 42, Verses 14-22) .


GAURAPRABHA. Son born to ~uka (Vyasa's son) by his wife Pzvari. Suka had four sores called Krsna, Gauraprabha, Bhuri and Devasruta and a daughter Kirti. (Devibhagavata, Prathama Skandha).


GAURAPRSTHA. A royal sage who worships Yama at his sabha (assembly). (Sabha Parva, Chapter 8, Verse 21).


GAURA9IRAS. A sage of ancient days, who worshipped Indra in his assembly. (Sabha Parva, Chapter 7, Verse 11).


GAURAVAHANA. A King, who was present at the rajasuya sacrifice of Yudhisthira. (Sabha Parva, Chapter 34, Verse 12).


GAURI 1. See Parvati.


GAURI II. A female attendant (Devi) of Parvati. (Vana Parva, Chapter 231, Verse 48).


GAURI III. Wife of Varuna. (Udyoga I'arva, Chapter 117, Verse 9) .


GAURI IV. An Indian river. (Bhisma Parva, Chapter 9, Verse 25).


GAURISA. A royal sage and a member of Yama's assembly. (Sabha Parva, Chapter 8, Verse 18).


GAUR1SKHARA (M). A sacred place on the Himalayas. A bath in Sthanakunda here brings the same benefits as are derived from the performance of Vajapeya and Mvamedha sacrifices. (Vana Parva, Chapter 84, Verse 151) .




I ) General Information. The Puranas record about a sage called Gautama though nothing is known about his genealogy. Yet the genealogy of his wife Ahalya is available. See under `Ahalya'.


2) Sons of Gautama. The eldest son of Gautama was gatananda. (Sloka 2, Sarga, 51, Bala Kanda, VdImiki Ramayana). Gautama had two sons. garadvan and Cirakari. Saradvan was born with arrows. in his hand. (S`loka 2, Chapter 130, Adi Parva). Cirakari used to ponder over everything before he acted and so all his actions were delayed. He got his name Cirakari. (Chapter 266, Sabha Parva). garadvan was known as Gautama also. That was why Krpa and Krpi, children of garadvan were known as dautama arid Gautami. (8loka 2, Chapter 129, Adi Parva). Besides these, Gautama had a daughter of unknown name. There is a reference to this girl in sloka 11 of Chapter 56 of Asvamedha Parva. It is reported that this daughter wept when Utafiga a disciple of Gautama came to the asrama with a huge load of firewood on his head. In Chapter 4, of Vamana Purana there is a reference to a few other daughters of Gautama, namely, Jaya, Jayanti and Aparaji.


3) An attemit to kill Ahalyd. Once when Gautama was away from the asrama Indra came there as a guest. Considering it as her duty to treat a guest 'of her husband properly during his absence Ahalya received him well and gave him fruit to ease his tiredness. Indra went back. Gautarna on knowing this on his return suspected the chastity of his wife and calling his son Cirakari to his side asked him to cut off her head. After giving the order Gautama went to the forests. ,


Cirakari had a peculiar nature. He will ponder over things deeply before takingany action. Heknew he must obey the orders of his father but killing one's own mother was a greater sin than disobeying a father. Weighing the merits and demerits of the act Girakari sat thinking without doing anything.


Gautama when he reached the forest thought again about Ahalya and her crime. After all what has she done ? A guest came to the asrama and as duty-bound she welcomed him. It was indeed a great sin to have killed her by her own son. Immersed in thoughts of this kind, sad and repentant, Gautama returned to the Wrama to find Cirakari sitting silently deeply engrossed in thoughts. On seeing his father Cirakari was perplexed and he explained to his father about the good and bad effects of his order. Gautama was pleased at this and he blessed him with long life.


4) How the disciple Utariga was tested. Utaiiga was the best of the disciples of Gautama. So even when all the other disciples were sent away Gautama asked Utanga to continue as a disciple which Utarlga did most willingly. The disciple became old with grey hairs. Then taking pity on him Gautama received gurudaksina from Utanga and sent him away with blessings. (For details see under `Utafiga' ).


5) Curse of Ahalya. Indra became a lover of Ahalya and slept with her. Gautama coming to know of that cursed both Indra and Ahalya. (For details see under Ahalya).


6) Other details regarding Gautama.


(i) Kalmasapada, King of Ayodhy5. lived for twelve years as a demon following a curse of Vasistha. At last he took refuge in Gautama and following his advice went to Gokarna and doing penance there to propitiate 8iva attained moksa. (8ivaratri Mahatmya). (ii) It was sage Nodhas, alias Gautama, who composed Sukta 58, Mandala one of Rgveda.


(iii) Laksmana, brother of Sri Rama, constructed a palace called Vaijayanta near the Urama of Gautama. (Uttara Ramayana).


(iv) Gautama is one of the seven sages (saptarsis (~loka 50, Chapter 133, Anusasana Parva).


(v) Gautama sat in the court of Brahma and worshipped Brahma. (M.B. Sabha Parva).


(vi) Gautama once blessed Dyumatsena, father of Satyavan, and said that he would regain his eyesight. (8loka 11. Chapter 298, Vana Parva) .


(vii) When the war between the Pandavas and Kauravas broke out Gautama went to the Kuruksetra battlefield and advised Drona to stop the battle. (8loka 36, Chapter 190, Drona larva)


(viii) Gautama was also one of the many sages who visited Bhisma while he was lying on his bed of arrows.


(ix) Once Gautama built a hermitage on the top of the mountain Pariyatra and did penance there for sixtythousand years. Kala, the God of time, then appeared before him and Gautama received him well and sent him away. (8loka 10, Chapter 47, Santi Parva).


x) Once Gautama turned the moustache of Indra green by a curse for showing disrespect to him. (Sloka 23, Chapter 352, 8anti Parva).


(xi) When Gautama was born, there was such brilliance that the surrounding darkness was removed and so the boy was named Gautama (Gau=light rays, Tamas=darkness) to mean the remover of darkness. (~loka 94, Chapter 93, Anusasana Parva).


(xii) Once Gautama instructed the King Vrsadarbhi on the evil of accepting rewards for good deeds. (8loka 42, Chapter 93, Anusasana Parva).


(xiii) Gautama was also one among the rsis who swore that they were not involved in the theft _ of the lotuses of the sage Agastya. (8loka 19, Chapter 94, Anusasana Parva, M.B.).


GAUTAMA II. A brahmin who was a member bf the court of Yudhisthira. He was a member of Indrasabha also. This Gautama while he was living in Girivraja had sexual relations with a Sudra woman from the country of Us inara and a son was born to them named


Kaksivan. (8lokas 17, 18 and 3 of Chapters 4, 7 .and 21 respectively of Sabha Parva, M.B.).


GAUTAMA 111. An ascetic of great erudition. He had three sons named Ekata, Dvita and Trita. (See under `Ekata'). (8loka 79, Chapter 36, 8alya Parva).


GAUTAMA IV. Another ascetic of great virtue. Once when this Gautama was going through the forest he saw an elephant babe -lying wearied. He took it tohis a~rama and brought ii, up. When it became a full grown elephant Indra disguised as the emperor Dhrtarastra came to take it away secretly. Gautama found it out and then he was offered thousand cows and much wealth in lieu of the elephant. But Gautama refused to part with the elephant. Pleased with his extreme affection for his dependant, Indra took both Gautama and the elephant to heaven. (Chapter 102, Anusdsana Parva).


GAUTAMA. V. An ungrateful brahmin. He was born in Madhyadesa. He left his parents and after travelling in many lands he came to a country of foresters. The foresters received him with respect and he lived in a but of the foresters and married a lady from among them.


Gautama abandoned his brahminhood and accepted the duties of foresters. He was living like this when another brahmin boy came to that village. He searched in vain for a brahmin house to stay for the night and then knowing that a man born a brahmin but made a forester by his duties was living there he went to his house. Gautama also came there carrying the animals and birds he had hunted down that day. His body, was bathed in blood. The brahmin guest felt compassion for Gautama and advised him to leave his trade and go to his house in his country.


In the morning the brahmin guest went away without taking any food. The advice of his guest kept him thinking. He decided to abandon his life as a hunter and so leaving everything behind he went to the seashore. He met some merchants on the way and while they were travelling together a wild elephant attacked them. Many were killed and Gautama escaping ran swiftly and came to the base of a big banyan tree. He was tired and slept there for a while.


A big vulture named Nadijarhgha lived on the top of that banyan tree. He used to go out to worship Brahma at dusk and when he returned to his abode that day he saw a man lying wearied down below. Gautama attempted to catch the vulture and eat it but the vulture playing a benign host placed before Gau,tama food for him and made enquiries about him and asked him the purpose of his travels. Gautama told him that he was very poor and that he wanted to acquire some wealth somehow.


Nadijarhgha then said that he would get for him enough wealth from the demon-King Virupaksa who was an intimate friend of his. Gautama was pleased. The vulture fanned him and sent him to sleep. Next morning Nadijarngha sent Gautama to Virupaksa and the demon gave Gautama as much gold as he could carry on his shoulders.


Gautama took the gold as a head load and came back to the base of the banyan tree. Nadijarirgha came to him and they talked to each other for some time. Gautama who had become a gluttonous flesh eater looked with greed at the fat body of the vulture and in an instant killed it and packed the flesh along with the load of gold and went his way.


Virupaksa did not see Nddijarngha for two days and he was worried. He, therefore, sent his son to the banyan tree to look fore Nadijamgha. When he reached the base of the tree he found to his grief only the bones and feathers of his father's friend. He knew what had happened and he immediately followed the ungrateful brahmin and capturing him brought him to his father bound hand and foot. Virupaksa without any mercy cut him into pieces and threw them for the crows to eat. But even the crows would not eat the flesh of such an ungrateful man.


Viritpaksa burnt the remains of Nadijamgha in a funeral pyre. Devas assembled in the skies to watch the funeral. Then Surabhi sprinkled milk on the funeral pyre and brought back Nadijarngha to life. The reborn vulture felt sorry for Gautama and requested Surabhi to restore to life the wretched Gautama also. Gautama also was brought back to life and he embraced Nadijarhgha. Gautama then went away with his load of gold.


Gautama returned to gabaralaya and there married a gadra lady and . begot, evil sons. The devas were offended at this and cursing him condemned him to hell. (Chapters 168 to 173, anti Parva).


GAUTAMI I. Another name of. Krpi, wife of Drona. (See under Krpi).


GAUTAMT II. The woman called Jatila belonging to the family of Gautama is known as Gautami also. (See under Jatila).


GAUTAMT III. A-brahmani whose son succumbed to snake-bite. (See Arjuna).


GAUTAMI IV. A river referred to in verse 71, Chapter 165 of Anus asana Parva.


GAVAKA I. A monkey king. A terrific warrior, he helped* Sri Rama with 60,000 monkeys. (Vana Parva, Chapter 283, Verse 4) .


GAVAKSA II. Younger brother of gakuni, the son of Subala. In the great war he broke into the military set up of the Pandavas. (Bhisma Parva, Chapter -90). He was killed by Iravan, son of Arjuna. (Bhisma Parva, Chapter 90) .


GAVALGANA. Father of Sarajaya of Mahabharata fame. (Adi Parva, Chapter .63, Verse 97) .


GAVAYA. A very powerful monkey King. As captain of a regiment he fought on the side of Sri Rama in the Rama-Ravana war. (Vana Parva, Chapter 2,53, Verse 3).


GAVAYANA. (GAVAMAYAANAM). A, yajna. (Vana Parva, Chapter 84, Verse 102`


GAVIJATA~ (J"Gl). Th( son of a sage named Nagabhusan,a, Gavijdta cu, sed that King Pariksit should die of snake-bite. The curse was made under the following circumstances.


King Pariksit went hunting one day in the forest and he who had chased a deer in hot haste for some distance felt naturally very weak and tired, and requested a sage he saw there in the forest for some water. Immersed in meditation the sage did not hear the King, and mistaking him to be a haughty fellow, the King, with- his stick, lifted a dead snake and placed it round the neck of the sage. Yet he did not stir. The King returned to his palace.


Gavijata, son of the sage and a devotee of Devi heard of the insult heaped on his father's head while he was merry-making in the forest with his companions. The companions derided him by saying that though his father was Nagabhusana (having snakes as ornament) the naga was 1 feless. Enraged at this and- not waiting to study details about the incident he pronounced the following curse. "Whoever might be the person who threw a dead snake about my father's neck, he will be bitten to death by Taksaka within seven days from today." Only after the curse was pronounced did he understand that it was King Pariksit who had become the object of -the curse. And, he despatched his disciple immediately to Pariksit to inform him about the curse. The King's reaction was, "when the time for death comes let me die." (Devi Bhagavata, Dvitiya Skandha).


GAVISTHA. A famous asura. It was he who descended on earth as king Drumasena. (Adi Parva, Chapter 67) .


GAYA. A particular locality in North India (Nepal). Here there is Gaya mountain and a holy centre also. There is legend to the effect that Buddha did tapas here. People of .this locality gave many presents to Yudhis'thira. (Sabha Parva, Chapter 52, Verse 16) .


GAYAI. See Gayatirtha.


1) General. A King of ancient India Gaya was a Rajarsi and son of Amurtarayas. The Rajarsi had conducted many yajnas. A very well-known yajna of his is described in verse 18, Chapter 75 of Vana Parva. 2) Particular Information. (1) Gaya was a member in Yamaraja's assembly. (Sabha Parva, Chapter 8, Verse 18).


(2) He had earned reputation and wealth by visiting the sacred temples in India. (Vana Parva, Chapter 94, Verse 18) .


(3) The Raiarsi had come in his vimana (aeroplane) to witness the fighting between Arjuna and Kr


in the war, which broke out as a result of the Kauravas lifting the cows of the Virata King. (Virata Parva, Chapter 56, Verse 9) .


(4) Sri Krsna met Gaya on his (Krsna's) way to Hastinapura from Dvaraka. (Udyoga Parva, Chapter 83, Verse 27) .


(5) Once King Mandhata subjugated Gaya. (Drona Parva, Chapter 62, Verse 10) .


(6) Sarasvati devi once attended a yajna conducted by Gaya, assuming for herself the name Visala.


(7) He once gifted away land to Brahmins. (S`anti Parva, Chapter 234, Verse 25) .


(8) Gaya did not eat flesh. (Anugasana Parva, Chapter 115, Verse 59) .


GAYA II. A king born to Ayus, the son of King Pururavas by his (Ayus's) wife Svarbhanu (Sv.i-,bhanavi) . This Gaya was the brother of Nahusa. (Adi Parva, Chapter 65, Verse 25) .


,GAYA III. An asura. (See Gayatirtha).


GAYA IV. A King born in the dynasty of the famous emperor Prthu. Prthu had two :sons called Antardhana and Vadi. A son called Havirdh5na was born to Antardhana by Sikhandi; he (Havirdhana) married Dhisana born in the family of Agni and they had six sons called Pracinabarhis, Sukra, Gaya, Krsna, Vraja and Ajina. (Harivam-a, Chapter 2, Verse 31).


GAYA V. A King, a descendant of Dhruva. (Agni Purina, Chapter 18) .


GAYAKA. A warrior of Subrahmanya. (81oka 67, Chapter 85, ~alya Parva).


GAYAPARVATAM. A sacred mountain. Yamaraja honoured it on a particular occasion. Brahmasaras encircled by , the Devas is on this mountain. To perform the 8raddha rites of the dead at Brahmasaras is considered to be excellent. (See Gayatirtha).


GAYASIRAS. A peak .of Gaya Mountain; it is also known as Gaya.'.irsa. (Vana Parva, Chapter 87) .


GAYASIRSA. See Gayasiras.


GAYATIRTHA. The following story is told in the Agni Purina about the origin of this very reputed sacred place at Gaya.


An asura called Gaya was once performing tapas here. As the intensity of his tapas went on increasing, the Devas got nervous and they approached Visnu with the request that he should save them from Gayasura. Visnu agreed to oblige them. Meantime the intensity of Gaya's tapas increased daily. Ultimately Visnu appeared to Gaya and as rcquested by him granted him the boon to the effect that he would become more holy and sanctified than all the tirthas in the world.


Brahma and other Devas became afraid of Gaya's power and prowess and they complained about him to Visnu, who advised Brahma to request Gaya for his body in order to perform a yajfia. Brahma did so and Gaya lay down on earth so that the Yajfia might be performed on his body. Brahma began the yajna on his head, and made an offering when the body of Gaya was not stationary or quiet. When told about this fact Visnu called up Dharmadeva (See Marici, Para 3) and told him thus : "You please hold devas ila (a divine stone) on the body of Gaya, and let all the Devas sit upon it, and I shall be seated on the stone along with the Devas, holding the gada (club) in my hands."


Dharmadeva did as he was bidden by Visnu. The body of Gaya stopped shaking as soon as Visnu sat upon the stone, and Brahma made the full offerings. Thenceforth the place became a holy tirtha under the name Gaya. After the yajfia was over Brahma gave the Gaya temple 20, 000 yards (5 Krosa) in extent with 55 villages attached to it as daksina (fee) to the masters of the ceremony. Brahrna presented the villages to them after creating therein hills purely of gold, rivers flowing with milk and honey, houses built of Gold and silver etc. But the brahmins who got these gifts stayed on there, their avarice only on the increase perhaps. Angry at this Brahma cursed the people of Gays„ and according to it the brahmins became illiterate and evilminded; rivers flowed with water instead of milk and honey. The brahmins lamenting over their evil fate submitted their grievances before Brahma, who consoled them thus : Well, brahmins of Gay-d, as long as there exist the sun and the moon you will continue to be dependent upon the Gaya tirtha for your sustenance. Whoever comes to Gaya and gives offerings to you and performs the due rites for the souls of the departed, the souls of hundred generations of his ancestors will be transfered from hell to heaven where they will attain final beatitude."


Thus did Gayatirtha become famous. (Agni Purina, Chapter 14.4) .


GAYATRI I. One of the seven horses of Surya. The other horses are Brhati, Usnik, Jagati, Tristubh,

Anugtubh, and Pankti. (Chapter 8, Arhsam 2, Visnu Purana)_




1) General information. A glorious Vedic mantra. This mantra has twentyfour letters. There are nineteen categ6ries of movable and immovable things in this world and to this if the five elements are added the number twentyfour is obtained. That is why the Gayatri has got twentyfour letters. (Chapter 4, Bhisma Parva). At the time of Tripura dahana Siva hung this Gayatri mantra as a string on the top of his chariot (Chapter 34, Karna Parva).


2) The glory of Gayatri. If one recites Gayatri once one will be freed from all sins done at that time; if one recites it ten times all the sins done on one day will be washed away. Thus, if one recites it a hundred times the sins of one month; thousand times, the sins of a year; one lakh times, the sins of his life time; ten lakh times, the sins of his previous birth; hundred lakh times, the sins of all his births, will be washed away, If a man recites it ten crore times he becomes a realised soul and attains moksa. (Navama Skandha, Devi Bhagavata).


3) How to recite Gdyatri. It should be recited sitting still with your head slightly drawn downwards with your right palm open upwards, with the fingers raised and bent to give the shape of the hood of a snake. Starting from the centre of the ring-finger and counting down and going up through the centre of the small finger and touching the top lines on the ring, middle and forefingers, count down to the base of the forefinger, you get number ten. This is how the number of recitations is counted. This method is called the Karamala (hand rosary) method. This is not the only method that could be used. You can use a rosary made of lotus seeds or glass beads. If you are using lotus seeds you should select white seeds for the rosary. (Navama Skandha, Devi Bhagavata).


GAYATRISTHANA. A sacred place of northern Bharata. If one spends one night here one will get the

benefit of giving away as gifts a thousand cows. (Sloka 28, Chapter 85, Vana Parva).


GERU. A mineral obtained from mountains. (9loka 95, Chapter 158, Vana Parva).


GH (Ex ). This letter has two meanings: (1) Bell (2) a blow ol- assault; striking or killing. (Aani Purina, Chapter 348) .


GHANAPATHA. A particular system of Vedic studies. There are four such systems. The system of separating each word from conjunctions and combinations and combining with the word just before and after it is called Jatapitha. Jatapatba means joined or combined Patha: Ghanapatha is there to avoid errors in Jatapatha Ghanapatha consists of padapatha and Kramapatha. In Padapatha the split words are once more combined and Pratisikhya lays down the rules to combine words. It is because of this scientific system of reciting that the Rgveda remains to this day pure in text without different readings.


GHANTA. I. A brahmin born in Vasistha's family. He spent hundred years worshipping 8iva. Once Ghanta asked sage Devala to give his daughter in marriage to him. But Ghanta's ugliness stood in the way. So he abducted the daughter of the sage and married her. Enraged at this Devala cursed -and turned him into an owl. He was also given redemption from the curse that he would regain his form the day he helped Indradyumna. (Skanda Purana) .


GHANTA II. See under dhantakarna. GHANTAKARNAJ.


1) General. Ghanta and Karna were two Raksasa brothers who attained salvation by worshipping Visnu. (Bhagavata, dasama Skandha). But the elder brother, Ghanta alone is sometimes called by the name Ghantakarna in the Puranas.


2) Birth. There is a reference in Darukavadha (killing of Darukasura) about the birth of Ghantakarna. Daruka, after having secured a boon from Brahma, used to harass the world too much and when his depredation hecame unbearable Siva created Bhadrakali from his third eye and~she killed the asura. Mandodar3 wife of Daruka and daughter of Maya was sunk in grief at the death of her husband. She began to do tapas. Siva appeared and gave her a ew drops of sweat from his body saying that the person on whom she sprinkled the sweat drops would suffer from small-pox and that such patients would worship her (Mandodari) and supply her necessary food. From that day onwards Mandodari became the presiding deity over small-pox. On her way back to the earth with the sweat-drops Mandodari met Bhadrakali at whom she threw the sweatdrops to take revenge for her husband's death. Immediately Bhadrakali fell down with an attack of small-pox. Hearing about the mishap Siva created a terrib1c Raksasa called Ghantakarna . According to Siva's directions Ghantakarna licked off the small-pox from Bhadrakali's body. But, when he tried to lick it off from her face she prevented him saying that she and Ghantakarna were sister and brother and that it was improper for the brother to lick the face of the sister. And, even to this day the small-pox on Bhadrakali's face remains as an ornament to her.


3) The name Ghantdkarna. This Raksasa, at first, was an enemy of Visnu, and did not tolerate even the mention of Visnu's name. Therefore, he went about always wearing a 'bell so that the tinkling of it warded off the name of Visnu from entering his ears. Because he wore a glianta (bell) in his Karnas (ears) he came to be known as Ghantakarna. (M.B. Bhavisya Parva, Chapter 80).


4) Turned out to be a devotee of Visnu. Ghantakarna became a servant of Kubera. Once he did tapas for salvation. Siva appeared and asked him to do to pas to please Visnu as Visnu was greater than himself (Viva) . From that day onwards he removed the bells from his ears and became a devotee of Visnu. (Bhavisya Parva, Chapter 80) .


5) Attained salvation. Handing over charge of government to Satyaki Sri Krsna once went to Kailasa mounted on Garuda to see Siva. On his way he dismounted at the Badaryasrama, and while sitting. deep in meditation there he heard the thundering voice of Pisacas (souls of dead people roaming about without attaining salvation). He also heard the barking,of dogs, and thus he understood that Pisacas were hunting animals. The hunters came to Krsna's presence. They were led by Ghantakarna who was reciting the name of Visnu. Sri


t. According to certain Puranas Ghantakarnas are two individu~ is used because the brothers were inseparable from each other.


Krsna felt pity for him. Ghantakarna told Krsna that his aim and ambition were to see Visnu and that Siva had blessed that he would realise his ambition at Badaryasrama. Pleased at all this, Sri Krsna revealed his Visvarupa (representing in his person the whole universe), and at once Ghantakarna brought half of the corpse of a brahmin and submitted it as a present before the Lord. He explained to Krsna that according to the custom of the Rdksasas that was the best present which could be made. Without accepting the present Krsna patted Ghantakarna on his back with the result that he cast off his body and rose tip-to Vaikuntha. (Bhavisya Purana, Chapters 80-82 and also Bhagavata, Dasama Skandha).


6) Ghantakarna Pratistha. (Installation of his idol in temples). Though Ghantakarna was a Raksasa, as he attained Vaikuntha due to the blessings of God Almighty his idol is still installed in temples, and worshipped. The installation ceremony is described in Chapter 59 of the Agni Purana thus: '-Ghantdkarna should have 18 hands. He cures diseases born a; a resu* It of sins. He holds in his right hand Vajra, sword, Cakra, arrow etc. And in his left hand broom, sword, cord bell, pickaxe etc. He also holds the trisula (trident).


Ghantakarna who turned out to be a Deva is believed to cure small-pox.


GHANTAKARNA II. One. of the four attendants presented by Brahma to Subrahmanya. Nandisena, Lohitaksa, Ghantakarna and Kumudamali are the four attendants. (Salya Parva, Chapter 45, Verses 23-24).


GHANTODARA. An asura, who was a member of Varuna's assembly. (Sabha Parva, Chapter 9, Verse 134).


GHARMA. A King of the A.figa royal dynasty.


GHATA. An urban area in ancient India. (Bhisma Parva, Chapter 9, Verse 63) .


GHATA. A notorious thief. He had a friend called Karpara. They were jointly known as Ghatakarparas. Once both the friends went to commit theft. Leaving Ghata at the door-steps Karpara entered the chamber of the princess who after enjoying sexual pleasures with him gave him some money asking him to repeat such visits in future. Karpara told Ghata all that had happened and handed over to him the money which the princess had given him. Karpara went again to the princess. But, owing to the weariness caused by the night's enjoyment both the princess and he slept till late in the morning. Meantime the palace guards found out the secret and took the lovers into custody. Karpara was sentenced to death and led out to be hanged. Ghata was present on the spot and Karpara asked him secretly to save the princess. Accordingly Ghata, without anybody knowing about it, took the princess over to his house.


The King ordered enquiries about the absence of the princess. Under the natural presumption that some relation or other of Karpara alone might have carried away his daughter the King ordered the guards of Karpara's corpse to arrest anybody who approached the corpse and expressed grief. Ghata came to know of this secret order of the King. Next day evening Ghata posing himself as a drunkard and with a servant disguised as


~ls, Ghanta and Karna. The term GhantakarDa-singular number a woman walking in front and with another servant carrying rice mixed with dhatura (a poisonous fruit) following him came to the guards keeping watch over Karpara's body. Ghata gave the poisoned rice to the guards who after eating it swooned under the effect. Ghata used the opportunity to burn the corpse of Karpara there itself. After that Ghata disappeared.


The King then deputed new guards to watch over the funeral pyre of Karpara as he anticipated some one to come to pick his charred bones from the pyre. But, Ghata put the guards into a swoon by a mantra he had learned from a sannyasin and went away with the bones of his friend.


Realising now that further stay there was not safe Ghata 1eft the place with the princess and the sannyasin. But, the princess, who had already fallen in love with the sannyasin poisoned Ghata to death.


GHATAJANUKA. A sage who was a prominent member in Yudhisthira's assembly. (Sabha Parva, Chapter 4) . Once, Sri krsna, on his way to Hastinapura met this sage. (Udyoga Parva, Chapter 38) .


GHATAKARPARA. One of the nine great poets in Sanskrit reputed as the nine gems in Vikramaditya's court.


"Dhanvantari-Ksapanak Amarasirhha-8anku-Vetalabhatta-Ghatakarpara--Kalidasah". A poem of twenty-two verses in Sanskrit called Ghatakarpara kavya is attributed to him. The theme of the poem is a message despatched by the hero to his wife who has only recently been married. All the stanzas are in yamaka (repeating a word or set of words to convey different meanings at the end of each line). By composing a poem called `Nalodaya', Kalidasa answered the challenge posed by Ghatakarpara in the use of Yamaka. Ghatakarpara answered Kalidasa in the following stanza.


Eko hi doso gunasannipate nimajjatindoriti yo babhase /


nunam na drstarh kavinapi tena daridryadoso gunarasinasi. //


(Kalidasa, in verse 3, Canto 1 of Kumarasarhbhava had written `Eko hi doso gunasannipate nimajjatindoh kiranesvivarikah". In the above verse by Ghatakarpara the usage `Kavinapi tena' may be interpreted in two ways, viz. Kavina+api+tena and Kavi-;-napitena. By the second combination Ghatakarpara converted Kalrdasa into a barber (napita).


GHATIKA. A measure of time equal to 24 minutes. Sixty vinadikas make one Ghatika. (See Kalamana).




1) General. Ghatotkaca, son of Bhimasena played a very important part in the story of Mahabharata. He was, from his very birth, a staunch friend and ally of the Pandavas. He courted a hero's death in the great war.


2) Birth. On the burning of the `lac Palace' the Pandavas escaped through a tunnel and reached a forest. While they were sleeping on the ground, Hidirhba the Raksasa chief in the forest saw the Pandavas from the top of a tree, and he deputed his sister Hidimbi to bring over the Pandavas to him for food.


Hidrrhb! approached the Pandavas in the guise of a beautiful woman. She was attracted towards Bhima and she prayed for the return of his love, which Bhima refused. Impatient at the delay Hidirhba rushed towards the Pandavas, and in the duel that ensued between him and Bhima, he was killed by Bhima.


Then Hidirhbi approached Kunti and requested her to ask Bhhna to marry her. The Patidavas agreed to the proposal on condition that Bhima and Hidiriibi should enjoy their honeymoon in the forest and on mountains, but Bhima should return to them at dusk everyday. Ghatotkaca was the son born to Bhima and Hidrmbi, (Adi Parva, Chapter 155) .


Indra bestowed on Ghatotkaca prowess enough. to be a suitable opponent to Karna. (Adi Parva, Chapter 155, Verse 47).


Ghatotkaca grew up to become a good friend of the Pandavas. When Hidimbi and Ghatotkaca took leave of them Kunti said to 6hatotkaca : "You are the eldest son to the Pandavas. You should be ever a support to them." To this Ghatotkaca answered that he would return to them whenever any need arose for it.


3) Carried the Pandaaas on shoulders. During their exile in the forest the ~andavas became too tired to walk any further when Bhima remembered Ghatotkaca, who promptly appeared before the Pandavas, and at the instance of Bhima got down a number of Raksasas also. Ghatotkaca carrying Paficali on -his shoulders, and theRaksasas carrying the Pandava brothers on their shoulders went by air to Badarikasrama where Naranarayanas were doing tapas, 1anded them there, and then they (Ghatotkaca and his companions) took leave of the Pandavas. (Vana Parva, Chapter 145).


4) Ghatotkaca in the ,great war. (1) In the first day's fighting he fought against Alambusa, Duryodhana and Bhagadatta. Frightened at the terrible course of the fight the Kauravas purposely postponed that day's fighting. (Bhisma Parva, Chapters, 45, 57, 58).


(2) He defeated the King of Vahga and killed his elephant. (Bhisma Parva, Chapter 92, Verse 36) .


(3) Defeated Vikarna. (Bhisma Parva, Chapter 29, Verse 36).


(4) On receiving blows from the great Kaurava heroes, Ghatotkaca rose up to the sky. (Bhisma Parva, Chapter 93, Verse 6).


(5) Ghatotkaca made the Kaurava army take to their heels by the exercise of his magic powers. (Bhisma Parva, Chapter 94, Verses 41-47) ,


(6) Fought a duel with Durmukha. (Bhisma Parva, Chapter 110, Verse 13) .


(7) Dhrtarastra praised the prowess of Ghatotkaca. (Drona Parva, Chapter 10, Verse 62) .


(8) He fought with Alayudha. (Drona Parva, Chapter 96, Verse 27) .


(9) Killed Alambusa. (Drona Parva, Chapter 109, Verse 28) .


(10) Asvatthama, son of Drona killed Afijana Parva, son of Ghatotkaca, (Drona Parva, Chapter 156, Verse 56).


(11) Ghatotkaca fought with Kama. (Drona Parva, Chapter 175).


(12) He fought with Jatasura. (Drona Parva, Chapter 174).


(13) He ki1led Alayudha. (Drona Parva, Chapter 178, Verse 31).


(14) Karna clashed with Ghatotkaca and failing to kill him by any means he (Karna) used Vaijayanti Sakti as the last resort. This Sakti had been given to him by Indra in exchange for his head-gear and earrings, and Kama had been keeping the Sakti in reserve to kill Arjuna. At any rate Kama used it against Ghatotkaca and he was killed. After killing Ghatotkaca the Sakti entered the sphere of the stars. (Drones Parva, Chapter 180).


5) Other information. (1) Ghatotkaca hated the Brahmins and their yajnas. (Drones Parva, Chapter 181, Verse 27).


(2) When the souls of the heroes killed in the great war were called upon the banks of Ganges by Vyasa, Ghatotkaca's soul too had appeared. (Asramavasika Parva, Chapter 32, Verse 8) .


(3) After death he lived with Yaksadevas. (Svargarohana Parva, Chapter 5, Verse 37) .


6) Synonyms of Ghatotkaca used in 16-Tahabharata. Bhaimaseni, Bhaimi, Bhimasenasuta, Bhimasenatmaja, Bhimasunu, Bhimasuta, Haidimba, Haidimbi, Raksasa, Raksasadhipa, Raksasapungava, Raksasesvara and Raksasendra.


GHATOTKACAVADHAPARVA: A sub Parva of Drona Parva,' (Drones Parva, Chapters 153-186) .


GHORA. A son of sage Affigiras. (Anusasana Parva, Chapter 85, Verse 131).


GHORAKA (M) . Name of an urban region in the southwest of ancient India. The people of this region supplied money to Yudhisthira. (Sabha Parva, Chapter 52, Verse 14) .


GHOSA. A tapasvini famed in Rgveda. She was the grand-daughter of Drgata maharsi and daughter of sage Kaksivan. As she contracted leprosy in her very childhood nobody came forward to marry her. Ultimately she composed a mantra in praise of Mvinidevas. They cured Ghosa of leprosy and she got married. (Rgveda, Mandala 1, Anuvaka 7, Sukta 117) .


GHOSAVATI. The famous Vines of emperor Udayana.


(Kathasaritsagara. )


GHOSAYATRAPARVA. A sub-Parva, Chapters 236251 of the Vana Parva. The procession made by Duryodhana and others to the Pandavas who lived in the forest forms the theme of this sub-Parva.


GHRANASRAVAS. An attendant of Skanda. Always immersed in yoga he worked for the welfare of Brahmins. (Salya Parva, Chapter 45, Verse 57) .


GHRTA. A King of the Anga dynasty. He was the son of Gharman and father of Vidusa. (Agni Purana, Chapter 277) .




1) General. She was an exceptionally beautiful apsara woman, and she revelled in disturbing the peace of the sages and becoming mother of children by them. Ghrtaci, who succeeded in breaking the penance of the sages like Kusan5.bha, Vydsa and Bharadvaja occupied a very prominent position among apsara women.


2) Suka, the son of hyasa. Vydsa longed very much to have a son. Ultimately, after receiving instruction and advice from Narada, he reached the peaks of Mahameru and worshipped Mahadeva and Mahadevi for one year with the one-syllabled mantra OM which is the very seed of word. By now the great tejas (effulgence) of Vydsa lighted up the whole world and Indra got nervous and upset. The great Lord Siva appeared on the scene and blessed Vydsa that he wil1 have a son who would become a very wise man, very much interested in helping others, and very famous also. Vydsa returned gratified to his asrama. One day, while in the process of preparing the sticks for producing fire, thoughts


about a son passed through his mind. Fire is produced by the rubbing of two stacks. But, he thought, how could he who had no wife, become the father of a son ? While immersed in such thoughts he saw Ghrtaci standing near him, herself having come along the sky. Vydsa did not like the presence of Ghrtaci. Fearing the curse of Vydsa she assumed the form of a parrot and flew away.


The beauty of Ghrtaci as also the flight of the parrot kindled erotic feelings in Vydsa and seminal emission occurred. The semen fell on the stick used for producing fire, and without knowing the fact he went on using the sticks for producing fire. And, then did appear from it a son of divine lustre. That son became reputed in later years as sage Suka. (Devi Bhagavata, Prathama Skandha).


3) Two children by Bharadaaja. Once sage Bharadvaja was taking his bath in the Ganges, Ghrtaci also came to bathe. On the banks of the river her clothes caught something and were removed from their position. The sight of it caused seminal emission to the Sage. The semen thus emitted was kept in a Drona, (bamboo cup) and when it was due the Drona broke and out of it came a child. It was this child which, in later years, became so very famous as the great Dronacarya. (Adi Parva, Chapter 149) . On another occasion also, the sight of Ghrtaci caused emission in Bharadvaja, and Srutavati or Sruvavati was the noble daughter born out of it. (Salya Parva, Chapter 48, Verse 63) .


Hundred daughters of'KuSandbha. Kusanabha, son of Ku- a was a saintly king. Once Kusanabha fell in love with Ghrtaci and a hundred daughters were born to him of her. Once Wind-God felt enamoured of the hundred girls, but they refused to satisfy his desire. So he cursed them to become crooked or bent down in body. Later on, Brahmadatta, son of the sage Culi, straightened their bodies and married them. (Valmiki Ramayana, Bala Kanda, Canto 32) .


5) ,Birth of Ruru. On another occasion Ghrtaci attracted and subjugated a King called Pramati. Ruru was the son born to Pramati by Ghrtaci.


6) Other information. (1) Once Ghrtaci pleased Sage Astavakra, who introduced her into Kuberars assembly. (Anusasana Parva, Chapter 19, Verse 44) .


(2) Ghrtaci danced at the birthday celebrations of Arjuna. (Adi Parva, Chapter 122, Verse 65) .


(3) A daughter cal1ed Citrangada was born to Visvakarman by Ghrtaci. (See under Visvakarma).


(4) A daughter called Devavati was born to Ghrtaci. (See under Devavati).


GHRTAPAS A great sage who lived on ghee. A disciple of Brahma he was an instructor of Sanatana Dharma. (anti Parva, Chapter 166, Verse 24) .


GHRTAPRSTHA. A son of Priyavrata, brother of Uttanapada. Svayambhuvamanu had two famous sons called Priyavrata and Uttanapada. Priyavrata, the elder son, married two daughters of Visvakarmaprajapati called Surupa and Barhismati, and of Surupa were born ten sons called Agnidhra, Idhmajihva,, Yajnabahu, Mahavira, Rukmasukra, Ghrtaprstha, Savana, Medhatithi and Vitihotra, and also one daughter called Grjasvati. (Devibliagavata, 8th Skandha).


GHRTAVATI. An important river in India. (Bhisma Parva, Chapter 9, Verse 23) .


GHRTEYU. A King born in the Anga dynasty. (Agni Purana, Chapter 277)


GHURNIKk Foster mother of D,~vayani, daughter of Sukracarya. (Adi Parva, Chapter 78, Verse 25).


GILGAMIS. It is the most ancient book of the Babylonians. It is as old as Rgveda. Another book so old as these is the "Book of the Dead" of the Egyptians. (See under Jalapralaya).


GIRIGAHVARA. A place of habitation on the northeastern side of Bh5.rata. (Sloka 42, Chapter 9, Bhisma Parva).


GIRIKA. Wife of Uparicaravasu. This gem of a lady was the daughter of the river Suktimati. There is a story behind her marrying Uparicara.


Suktimati was a river flowing through the capital city of the kingdom of Uparicara. Once the mountain Kolahala driven by amorous desires subdued Suktimati. The next morning on finding no river in its place the people were surprised. The news reached the ears of the King. He became furious and rushing to the mountain gave it a hard kick. It created a hole in the mountain and the river flowed through it. But by that time Kolahala had got a son and a daughter of 8uktimati. Greatly pleased at the King for setting her free from Kolahala, Suktimati gave her children to the King. The King brought up the son and made him the chief of his army. The girl was brought up and named Girika and when she was of marriagable age the King married her. When once Girika was having her monthly period the King was forced to go to the forests for hunting. While in the forests he saw the animals having sexual acts and as he thought of Girika at home he had emission. He never wanted to waste the seminal fluid. He wrapped it in a leaf and sent it to his wife through a kite. Another kite thinking it to be something to eat attacked the packet and it fell into a river down below. A fish swallowed it and later when a fisherman caught it and opened its belly a boy and a girl came out of it. The girl was Satyavati mother of Vyasa. (10th Skandha, Devi Bhagavata) .


GIRINATHADIKSITA. See under Gunanidhi.


GIRIPRASTHA. A mountain of the country of Nisadha. Indra once hid himself on this mountain. (Sloka 13, Chapter 315, Vana Parva).


GIRIVRAJA. A city which has gained great importance in all the Puranas of India.


1) Origin. There was once a King named Kusa in the Paru dynasty. (For genealogy see under `Gadhi'). This Kusa begot of his wife, Vaidarbhi, four sons named Kusamba, Kuanabha, Asurtarajasa and Vasu. Each of them built a city of his own and started his rule there. Girivraja is the magnificent city built by Vasu. (Sarga 32, Bala Kanda, Vdlmiki Ramayana).


2) Jarasandha's rule. Vasu had a son named Brhadratha and Jarasandha was the son of Brhadratha. During the rule of Jarasandha Girivraja became glorious like Nandanodyana. This city lying in the midst of five mountains was the seat of prosperity then. (Chapter 21, Sabha Parva). Jarasandha kept many mighty kings of his time, as prisoners in this city. Unable to control his wrath against Krsna once he hurled his mace a hundred times and threw it from Girivraja to Mathura. Sri K°sna, Bhimasena and Arjuna entered Girivraja in


disguise and engaging Jarasandha in a duel killed him and crowned his son as King. (Chapter 24, Sabha Parval. Once King Dutndhumara abandoning the. gifts o;'Iered by the devas came and slept in Girivraja. (S1oka 39, Chapter 6, Anus asana Parva).


VITA. See under Bhagavad Gita.


GITAPRIYA. A follower of Skandadeva. (Sloka 7, Chapter 46, Salya Parva).


GI TAVIDYADHARA. A great musician among the gandharvas. When he found that sage Pulastya had no liking for music he teased the sage by making the sounds of a boar. The enraged sage, cursed him and turned him into a boar. He got relief from the curse when Iksvaku kii1ed him and Gitavidyadhara became his old self again. (Chapter 46, Srsli Khanda, Padma Purana).


GO. (GAU). A wife of sage Pulastya. Vaisravana was born of her. The son left his father and went to Brahma. (Sloka 12, Chapter 274, Vana Parva).


GOBHANU. A King who was the grandson of Turvasu of the Puru dynasty and son of King Varga. Gobhanu had a son named Traisani. (Chapter 277, Agni Purana).


GODA. A follower of Skandadeva. (Sloka 28, Chapter 46, Salya Parva).


GODANA. In ancient India it was believed to be a very great deed of moral merit to give cows as gifts. If one buys cows with the hereditary wealth and gives them as gifts one would reach an ever prosperous world and even one who buys cows with the money received by gambling and gives them as gifts would live for several years enjoying prosperity. (Chapter 73, Anusasana Parva) .


GODAVARI. A river of South India. This river has been glorified much in the Puranas.


(1) Godavari is a member of the court of Varuna. (Sloka 20, Chapter 9, Sabha Parva).


(2) This river originates from Brahmagiri, situated near Tryambakajyotirliriga of Nasik district in South India. The river is very deep and is a giver of prosperity to those who worship her. Many sages worshipped this river. (Sloka 2, Chapter 88, Vana Parva) .


(3) If one bathes in this river one will get the benefit of conducting a Gomedha yajna. Not only that, after his death he will go to the land of Vasuki. (Sloka 33, Chapter 85, Vana Parva).


(4) The origin of Agni is from Godavari. (Sloka, 24, Chapter, 222, Vana Parva).


(5) Sri Rama, Laksmana and Sita stayed for a long time during their exile in Pancavati on the shores of this river Godavari. (Valmiki Rdmdyana, Aranya Kanda, Sarga 16) .


(6) Godavari is one of the most important rivers of India. (Sloka 14, Chapter 9, Bhisma Parva).


(7) He who bathes in Godavari will be prosperous. (Sloka 29, Chapter 25, Anusasana Parva).


GODHA. A village in the north-east part of ancient India. (Sloka 42, Chapter 9, Bhisma Parva).


GODILA I. A Samavedamurti By his curse Utatthya became a dunce and later becamefamous as Satyatapas. (For details see under Satyatapas) .


GODILA II. A servant of Vaisravana. Once when Godila was travelling by air he saw Padmavati, wife of Ugrasena, King of Vidarbha, bathing in a pond along with her companions. The very sight of the enchanting Padmavati roused carnal passions in him and the Yaksa took the form of Ugrasena and started singing from the top of a hillock nearby. Padmavatl went to him because she mistook him for her husband. Embracing her passionately the Yaksa outraged her modesty. Subtle differences in the act created doubts in Padmavati and, on being questioned, the Yaksa told the truth and left the place. (Chapter 49, Padma Purana).


GOHARANAPARVA. A sub-divisional Parva of Mahabharata. See Linder `Mahabharata'.


GOHATYA. In ancient India killing of cows was considered to be a great sin. It is interesting to note the punishment prescribed for this crime in the Agni Purana. For one month he should drink barley water only. He should live in a cow-shed wearing the hide of the cow he has killed. He can have some supper and that too without salt He must bathe for two months in cow's urine. During day time he should follow the cows looking after their comfort. He should drink the menstrual discharge with his face lifted upwards. Fasting, he should give away as charity ten cows and a bull. If not, he should give as charity all his wealth to god-fearing brahmins. If a man only stops the cow -for others to kill he should bear a fourth of the punishment; if he stops and ties it for killing he should bear half of the punishment and if he stops it, ties it and gives the weapon for killing he should bear three-fourths of the punishment. (Agni Purana, Chapter 159) ,


GOKHALI. One of the disciples in the tradition of Vyasa. He was the direct disciple of Sakalya. Sakalya divided the branch of Veda he received into six and gave one to each of the following six disciples Valgayana, 1Vlaudgalya, Sali, Adisisira, Gokhali, and Yatukarna. (Skandha 12, Bhagavata) .


GOKARNA I. See under Gokarna.


GOKARNA II. An incarnation of Siva. In the seventh Varahakalpa Siva was born as Gokarna and he then got four sons named, Kasyapa, Usanas, Cxavana and Brhaspati. (Satarudrasariihita, Siva Puranaf).


GOKARNA. In the great battle Karna sent a serpentmissile against Arjuna, The serpent named Asvasena was the power behind the missile and Gokarna was the mother of that serpent. (Sloka 42, Chapter 90, Karna Parva).


GOKARNA. A sacred place of Puranic importance situated on the extreme north of Kerala*


(1) Origin. There was once on the banks of the river, Tungabhadra, a village made sacred and prosperous by the bra_hinins who lived there. In that village lived a noble brahmin named Atmadeva. His wife was a quarrelsome woman named Dhundhuli. Even after many years of married life they got no children and Atmadeva, greatly grief-stricken, .left his home and went to the forests. He was sitting on the shore of a lake after quenching his thirst from it when a Sannyasin came that way. Atmadeva told him about his domestic life and pleaded that he should suggest a way to get a son for him. The sannyasin sat in meditation for some time and contemplated on the horoscope of Atmadeva and regretfully informed him that according to his horoscope he was to have no children for seven successive births. He, therefore, advised Atmadeva to


abandon all his worldly pleasures and accept sannyasa for the rest of his life. But Atmadeva was not to be discouraged by this prophecy and he urged the sannyasin to help him somehow to get a child. The sanyasin then gave him a fruit and asked him to give it to his wife and ask her to observe a life of fasting for a period of one year.


Greatly pleased with this boon Atmadeva returned to his house and told his wife all that had happened and gave her the fruit. She liked to eat the fruit but a year's fasting seemed troublesome to her. She was thinking of how to get over this difficulty when her younger sister came to her and suggested a plan. She said "Sister, I am pregnant. I shall give you the child I deliver. You can declare it as your child and make your husband believe so. You can announce in publi, that you have eaten the fruit and have consequently become pregnant. We can, to test its merit, give the fruit to a cow." Dhundhuh liked the plan very much, and so did everything like that.


The news that Dhundhuli was pregnant spread in the city. Very soon her sister gave birth to a child and that child was proclaimed as the child of Dhundhuli. On the pretext that Dhundhuli was short of breast-milk her sister started doing the breast-feeding. The child was named Dhundhukari.


After three months the cow that ate the fruit delivered a child. The ear of the child was like that of a cow and so he was called Gokarna. Dhundhukari and Gokarna grew together. Dhundhukari became a very evil-natured boy while Gokarna grew into a scholarly one. Dhundhukaxi who was the very seat of everything bad made the life of their parents wretched and the disappointed Atmadeva renounced all and went to the forests and did penance and attained moksa. Unable to bear the torture by her son, Dhundhuli committed suicide by jumping into a well. Gokarna started on a pilgrimage.


Dhundhukari lived in his own house surrounded by prostitutes. Thieving was his only means of livelihood. Knowing this the servants of the king started to capture Dhundhukari and the prostitutes who lived with him, for their safety, bound Dhundhukari with ropes and put him into fire and killed him. The soul of Dhundhukari became a great phantom. Hearing tho news of' the death of his brother, Gokarna returned home. He conducted a sradd-ha at Gaya to give peace to the soul of his departed brother. But the phantom of Dhundhukari was not pacified. This phantom troubled him always: Gokarna was not afraid of it and asked him what lie wanted and the phantom pleaded that in some way Gokarna should get him absolved of all his sins. Gokarna then consulted Pandits to know what method should be adopted to save a soul which could not be saved even by a Gaya-Sraddha. The Pandits advised him to do penance to propitiate the Sun. The Sun who appeared before Gokarna as a result of his penance declared that if he did read the entire Bhagavata in seven days Dhundhukari would get moksa. So Gokarna performed a Saptaha and among those who assembled to hear it was the phantom of Dhundhukari also. The phantom finding no place to sit crept into a sevenlayered bamboo and sat there listening to Gokarna. When the first day was over the first layer broke and it went on like that every day tend on the seventh day the seventh layer broke and when Gokarna finished the twelfth Skandha the phantom rose from the bamboo to heaven. When it was going to heaven it looked at Gokarna and told him that his moksa was due to the result of his hearing the saptiha reading. When Gokarna asked him why none of the others who heard it got it he said that it was because none had heard it with such rapt attention as he had done. Gokarna then conducted another reading of Saptiha and the people present heard the same with rapt attention. When the reading was over, a chariot of Visnu from Vaikuntha descended and carried away all those who heard the reading. The place where Gokarna sat and read the Saptiha became known later as the famous Gokarna. ( Chapters 1 to 3, Bhigavata Mihitmya), 2 ) Mitrasaha and Gokarna. A King of Ayodhya named Mitrasaha who became famous by the name of Kalmisapida, became a demon by a curse of Vasistha. He attained moksa by living and worshipping God in the temple at Gokarna. (See under Sivaratri for details). 3 ) Gokarna and the origin of Kerala. Brahminda Purina gives a story associating Gokarna with the origin of Kerala. By the request of Bhagiratha the river Ganga fell on earth and flowing as different brooks emptied its waters in the ocean. The level of the water in the ocean went up and the temple of Gokarna and the land of Kerala were submerged in waters. The sages who were in the temple somehow escaped and took refuge on the mountain Sahya. Parasurima was doing penance there then and the sages went to him and told him of their plight. Parasurima went and stood in Gokarna and threw an axe to the south. All the land from Gokarna, up to the place where the axe fell rose up from the ocean to form a piece of land which was named Kerala. (Chapter 97 of Brahminda Purina). 4) Other Purdnic details regarding Gokarna. (i) Bhagiratha did penance to bring Gangidevi to Earth at Gokarna. (Sarga 12, Chapter 42, Bila Kinda, Vilmiki Ririiiyana ) . ii) The serpent named Mesa spent much time living here. (Chapter 36, Sloka 3, Adi Parva). iii) Arjuna visited Gokarna while he was on his pilgrimage. (Sloka 34, Chapter 26, Adi Parva). iv) Gokarna was one of the abodes of diva. Brahma, Maharsis,l3hiztas and Yaksas used to stay at Gokarn.a to worship diva. (Sloka 24, chapter 85, Vana Parva) . v) The holy place of Gokarna is renowned in all the three worlds (Sloka 15, Chapter 88, Vana Parva). vi) Gokarna is a tapovana also. (SIoka 51, Chapter 6, Bhisma Parva). vii) Sri Krsna, Arjuna and Pradyumna together killed Nikurinbha, who had kidnapped Bhinumati, at Gokarna. ( Chapter 90, Visnu Purina).


GOKARNI. A follower of Skandadeva. (M.B. Salya Parva, Chapter 90; 8loka 42) .


GOLAKI. The mother of an Asura named Madhupa. This woman was born from the face of Brahma in Krtayuga. (UttaraRimiyana).


GOLOKA. A divine world. Mostly cows live in this world which is above all the other worlds. Surabhi, daughter

of Daksa, acquired great powers by doing rigorous penance in this world. Pandits say that Goloka is the upper lip, Brahmaloka, the lower 1ip, of Mahivisnu. (M.B. anti Parva, Chapter 347, Sloka 52) .


GOMANTA I. A famous mountain near Dviraki. This mountain is known as Goma and Raivataka also. Once Sri Krsna went to see Gomanta and on the way met Parasurima. (Skandha 10, Bhagavata). Parasurima and Sri Krsna went together and saw this beautiful mountain. Vyisa has devoted Chapter 40 of Visnu Parva entirely for the description of this mountain of Gomanta. Once Balabhadrarima caught hold of Jarasandha on this mountain but let him off.


GOMANTA II. A place of habitation lying to the north-east of ancient India. (Sloka 43, Chapter 9, Bhisma Parva ) .


GOMANTA III. A mountain of the island of Kusa. (8loka 8, Chapter 12, Bhisma Parva).


GOMATI. (KAUSIKI). A celebrated river of Puranic fame. This is worshipped as a goddess.


1) The curse. Kampa Raxniyana states that this river was Kausiki, sister of Visvimitra. She became a river by a curse.


Kaus iki was married to a sage -calied Rcika. Once Rcika went to devaloka to see Brahma. Kausiki unable to bear the separation fol1owed her husband by her power of chastity. On the way Rcika saw her and cursed her and made her into a river. From that day onwards she started running as a river named Kausiki. See under Kausiki. (Bila Kinda, Vilmiki Ramayana) . 2 ) Other details frorn the Purcinas regarding Gomati.


i) Sri Rama conducted the Asvamedha yaga at Naimisiranya on the banks of this river. (Uttara Rimiyaria) . ii) The sins of those who drink the water of this river are washed.away. (~loka 20, Chapter 169, Adi Parva). iii) The devi of Gomati river lives in the court of Varuna worshipping him. ( 8loka 23, Chapter 9, Sabha Parva ) .


iv) Dharinaputra came to this river during his pilgrimage. (~loka 2, Chapter 95, Va:na Parva).


v) Gomati is the wife of Agnideva called Visvabhuk. ( Sloka 19, Chapter 219, Vana Parva).


vi) This is one of the'most important rivers of Bharatavarsa, (~loka 18, Chapter 9, Bhisma Parva).


vii) The land of Divodasa, King of Ayodhya, extended from the shores of Gangi to the base of Gomati. (Brahminda Purina, Chapter 2) .


GOMATIMANTRA. A mantra for obtaining blessings from cows. If one recites this mantra standing in the midst of cows one would get many children arid great wealth and if it is recited by a woman she would get the affection and love of her husband. ( Sloka 42, Chapter 81, Anug asana Parva, M.B. ).


GOMEDAKA. See under Navaratna.


GOVIUKHA I. A notorious King. He was born of the family of Krodhavasi. (Sloka 63, Chapter 67, Adi Parva ) .


GOMUK.HA II. An asura who vas a follower of an asura called Surapadma. (Asura Kinda, Skanda Purina).


GOMUKHA III. Son of Mitali, charioteer of Indra. (S,loka 8, Chapter 100, Udyoga Parva).


GONANDA. A soldier of SkandadevaAloka 65, Chapter 43, galya Parva).


GOPALAKA. A son born to Candamahasena of his wife Angdravati. Besides Gopalaka he had another son named Palaka. (Kathasaritsagara, Kathamukhalambaka, Taranga 3) .


GOPALI. I. A nymph. Once when Arjuna went to devaloka this celestial maiden gave a performance in dancing in his honour. (Chapter 43, Vana Parva).


GOPALT II. A follower of Skandadeva. (Sloka 4, Chapter 46, Salya Parva).


GOPARASTRA. A place of habitation in the north-east part of ancient India. (Sloka 44, Chapter 9, Bhisma Parva).


GOPATI I. A demon. He was a co-worker of another demon named Kalaketu. Sri Krsna killed Gopati on the banks of the river Iravati on the mountain Mahendra. (Chapter 38, Sabha Parva).


GOPATI II. A deva gandharva. He was born to Kasyapa of his wife Muni. (Sloka 42, Chapter 65, Vana Parva). This gandharva participated in the birthday celebrations of Arjuna. (Sloka 55, Chapter 122, Adi Parva 1.


GOPATI III. A son of the celebrated emperor, Sibi. When Parasurama killed and made extinct all Ksatriya kings it was a herd of cows that brought up this child. ( loka 78, Chapter 49, Santi Parva)


GOPATI IV. A synonym of S.iva used in Sloka 151, Chapter 17 of Anusasana Parva


GOPATI V. A synonym of Visnu used in Sloka 66, Chapter 149, of Anugasana Parva.


GOPAYANA. The army of Gopas. (Sloka 13, Chapter 71, Bhi sma Parva).


GOPIKKLJRI. See under Orddhvapundra.


GOPTATARA. A place on the northern bank of the river, Sarayu. Sri Rama with his two armies and vehicles ascended to heaven from this place. (S`loka 10, Chapter 83 Mahabharata) .


GORATHA. The palace of Magadha. This palace was situated on a mountain near Girivraja. (Sloka 30, Chapter 20, Sabha Parva).


GOSAVA. A malrayajna. (Sloka 17, Chapter 30, Vana Parva).


GOSTANI. A follower of Skandadeva. (Sloka 3, ~Chapter 46, galya Parva).


GOTAMA. A sage named Gotama, son of Rahugana, is found everywhere in Rgveda. The seventyfourth sukta in the thirteenth anuvaka of the first mandala of Rgveda is composed by this sage. There are many-other suktas also it his name. This sage is not the Gautama, husband of Ahalya,~who made Sukta 58, Anuvaka 11, Mandala 1 of Rgveda.


Once this Gotama -tired of thirst asked the Maruts for some water. The Maruts took a huge well to his side and poured water into a big pot. (Suktas 86, 87, Anuvaka 14, Ma.ndala 1, Rgveda).


It was A5 Vinidevas who took the well to Gotama. (Sukta 116, Anuvaka 17, Mandala 1, Rgveda).


GOTIRTHA. A holy place. The Pandavas visited this place during their pilgrimage. (Sloka 3, Chapter 95, Vana Parva).


GOTRA. A son of Vasistha. Vasistha had of his wife Urjja seven sons named Rajas, Gotra, Crddhvabahu,


Savana, Anagha, Sutapas and gukra. These holy men were saptarsis in the third Manvantara. (Chapter 1, Visnu Purina).


GOVARDHANA. A mountain of Ambadi (Gokula). This is believed to be a form of Krsna. This is called Giriraja also. The residents of Ambadi from time immemorial used to worship Indra for getting rains. But after the advent of Krsna there came a change in that belief. Krsna told them that rains depended on Govardhana and it was enough if they worshipped that mountain and so the residents of Ambadi started worshipping the mountain. Indra got enraged at this and sent heavy rains to Ambadi intending to submerge it in water. But Sri Krsna lifted the mountain over Ambadi like an um= brella and saved the city from the wrath of Indra. See under `Krsna' for more details. (Dasama Skandha, Bhagavata)


GOVASANA. A King of the country called givi. The daughter of this King, Devika, married Yudhisthira in a svayamvara. Once Govasana met in a duel the son of Abhibhu, King of Kag i. (Sloka 38, Chapter 95, Drona Parva).


GOVASANA (M) . A country of ancient India. The people of this place presented Yudhisthira with much wealth. (9loka 5, Chapter 51, Sabha Parva).


GOVIKARTA. The man who puts nose-bands on bullocks. (Sloka 9. Chapter 2, Virata Parva).


GOVINDA. A synonym of Sri Krsna (Mahavisnu). He got this name because he saved the people and cows of Ambadi by lifting the Govardhana mountain and using it as an umbrella. (Daksinatya patha Chapter 38, Sabha Parva).


GOVINDADATTA. A hrahmin of great fame. who resided in Bahusuvar.naka, a city on the banks of the river Gariga. His wife was a very pious woman. They had five children. Once when both the parents were away from the house a sage called Vaisvanara came there but the children did not receive him and treat him properly. Knowing this Govindadatta abandoned all his children. (Kathasaritsagara, Kathapithalariibaka).


GOVINDAGIRI. A mountain of Krauiicadvipa. (Sloka 19, Chapter 12, Bhisma Parva)


GOVINDASARMAN. A brahmin who lived in olden times in the city of Kasi. (See under Sirhhadhvaja).


GOVITATA. A peculiar kind of horse sacrifice. Sage Kanva once made his gra:adson, Bharata, conduct a sacrifice of this kind. (9loka 130, Chapter 74, Adi Parva)


GOVRAJA. A soldier of Skandadeva. (9loka 66, Chapter 45; Salya Parva).


GRAHAS (PLANETS). Indians from very ancient days have maintained certain definite ideas and inferences about the planets. Though those ideas differ somewhat from the results of modern researches, the influence of the ancient ideas is discernible in all the Puranic texts in India. The main ideas are summarised below.


Surya (Sun), Candra (Moon), gukra (Venus),. Budha (Mercury), Kuja (Mars), Brbaspati (Jupiter) rSani (Saturn), Rahu and Ketu are the navagrahas (the nine planets) .


Suryas candro mafrgalaZ ca Budhas capi brhaspatih / gukrah. s anais' caro rahuh Ketus ceti navagrahah ! /


Besides the above nine planets, Indian astronomers take into account a starry sphere in the sky called Saptarsis and the star called Dhruva.


1) Surya. The sun gives light to all the other planets. It has an area of 50 crore yojanas and its distance from the earth is 22 crore yojanas. Surya exists within the universe, and is called also Martanda as it originated from dead (mrta) egg (anda). Surya divides the sky, heaven, hell, the earth, east, west, north, south etc. from one another. According to the course of Surya three periods of time or `seasons' like uttarayana, daksinayana and visuvat are caused. Five months from May is the uttarayana period, five months from November the daksinayana period, and the months of April and October are the Visuvats. Since during the uttarayana the sun rises up comparatively slowly (mandagati) during this period the day is longer than night. As in daksinayana the course of the sun is quicker in pace (Sighragati) night is longer than day, and during visuvat, (samagati) day and night are of equal duration.


The other planets have three positions called Jaradgava, Airavata and Vaisvanara, the first being the central position, the second the northern position and the third the southern position. Nine stars, Asvini, Bharani, Krttika, Rohini, Mrgasiras, Ardra, Punarvasu and Pusya occupy the Airavata vithi (northern position or segment). Another nine stars, Magha, Purva Phalguni, Uttara Phalguni, Hasta, Citra, Svati, Visakha, Anuradha and jyestha occupy the central position, and the last nine stars, Mula, Purvasadha, Uttarasadha, Sravana, Sravistha, gatabhisak, Piirvaprosthapada, Uttaraprosthapada and Revati occupy the southern position.


To the east, south, west and north of Mount Mahameru exist Devadhanika (Indrapuri) Samyamani (Yamapuri) 1Zimlocani (Varunapuri) and Vibhavari (Kuberapuri) respectively. When Surya appears in Devadhanika it will be dawn, when he has travelled to Samyamani it will be noon; when he is in Nimlocani it will be sunset and when he is in Vibhavari it will be mid-night. This is how Surya circ1cs the Mahameru. Within 15 nadikas (6 hours) the sun travels 2-i crores plus 2 1 lakhs of yojanas. Surya's chariot has one wheel and twelve spokes. The wheel represents a year and the twelve spokes stand for the twelve months of the year. The chariot has also three nabhis representing the three caturmasyas, and six bands representing the six seasons. The height of the chariot is 36 lakhs yojanas and it has a width of 8 yojanas inside. Arunadeva is the charioteer, and the seven chandas are the horses. The seven ehandas are, Gayatri, Brhati, Usnik, Jagati, Tristubh, Anustubh and Pankti).


Night is called Usa and day Vyusti and the time in between is Sandhya. When Sandhya begins the terrible Raksasas called Mandehas attempt to consume Surya. They have been granted the boon that everyday they will be dying though they may not be losing their bodies. So, everyday there rages a fierce fight between them and Surya. When the fight is on, noble brahmins throw up water sanctified by Gayatri mantra with `Om'. The water turns into Vajrayudha and burns the Raksasas to ashes. The first offering in Agnihotra is made with the rc~itation of the mantra beginning `Suryo jyoti' because of which the sun is able to shine


with thousands of rays with the result that the Raksasas are burned to death. The Balakhilyas who number more than 60,000 form Surya's body-guard. (See under Surya for Puranic stories about him).


2) Candra. (The Moon). Candra exists at one lakh yojanas away from Surya, and it revolves round the earth. A candra month of twentyseven days is divided into twelve rasis (houses) viz. Sirhha (Leo), Kanya (Virgo) Tula (Libra) Vrscika (Scorpio) Dhanus (Sagittarius) Makara (Capricorn) Kurhbha (Aquarius) Mina (Pisces) Mesa (Aries) Vrsabha (Taurus) Mithuna (Gemini) and Karkataka (Cancer). Every month Candra stays in each of the above houses only for 24days.


The lull moon makes Pitrs happy, divides the month into two halves, Krsna Paksa (the dark fortnight) and Sukla Paksa (the bright fortnight) and functions as the very life of all living beings. The twentyseven stars from Asvini to Revati are the wives of Candra. There is another view that Candra has twentyeight wives including another star called Abhijit. Candra has another name, Sarvamaya. Candra with his pleasing rays, as sweet as Amrta (Nectar) bestows happiness on devas, Pitrs and all other living beings. So he is called Sarvamaya.


Candra's chariot has three wheels. Ten beautiful horses white as jasmine flowers draw the chariot. These horses also like those of Surya live for a Kalpa era. Because the Devas drink its digits Candra wanes into one digit (Kala). Then Surya makes him wax again with one single ray of his called Susumna. When only two Kalas of his remain Candra enters the orbit of Surya and stays there in the ray called `ama', and that day, therefore is called amavasya. And on that day Candra enters waters for the first time, and after that dwells in trees, creepers etc. While Candra is thus in trees etc. those who cut them will be committing the sin of brahmahatya. (slaughter of a Brahmin). When only a little of the 1`5th kala remains on new moon day hordes of Pitrs gather round the enfeebled Candra to drink him, and they drink the amrta kala, one of the two kalas still remaining with him. Thus the three classes of Pitrs, Barhisadas, Saumyas and Agnis'vattas get absolutely satisfied for one month. Thus Candra nurtures Devas in the Sukla Paksa and pitrs in Krsna Paksa, and grows trees, creepers etc. with life-giving water. (For details see under Candra) .


3) gukra (Venus). Sukra is an auspicious Deva very much interested in doing good to the world and making people happy. His course is also, like that of Surya, of three types, intense (quick), slow and of equal pace. Two-and-a-half yojanas above Surya, Sukra follows a course alternating in front of and behind Surya. Sukra never goes very far away from Surya, and he possesses a big chariot drawn by horses from earth. (For details see under Sukra).


4) Budha (Mercury). Though inherently auspicious Budha, in contact with inauspicious planets takes their character and becomes weak. Budha also has the three paces, quick, slow and medium. Budha moves close to Surya and if he moves from Surya storms, failure of rain etc. will be the result. He is considered to be- the son of Candra. His chariot is made of wind and fire, golden in colour and is drawn by eight horses having the speed of wind. (See under Budha for more details).


5) Kuja (Mars). Kuja is two lakhs of yojanas above Budha, and remains in every rasi (house) more or less for 45 days. When the position is affected it causes inauspicious experiences to living beings. The chariot of Kuja is made of gold, glittering and of huge size. Eight horses born from Agni draw the chariot.


6) Brhaspati (7upiter) . Jupiter travels 2 lakhs of yojanas away from Kuja's sphere. Though it is an auspicious planet its reverse course is productive of evil results. Jupiter travels for twelve months in every ras i (house). His golden chariot is drawn by eight white horses. (See Brha,;p'ati).


7) gani (Saturn). gani is 2 lakhs of yojanas away from Jupiter's sphere, and it stays in every house for twenty months. As it moves only slowly it is called Sanaiscara also. gani is considered to be the son of Surya. It is an inauspicious planet. His chariot is drawn by multicoloured horses born in the sky.


8) Rahu. His ash-coloured chariot is drawn by eight horses as dark as beetles. Once the horses are harnessed to the chariot it will always be running. On full moon days Rahu starts from Surya and reaches Candra and returns to Surya on new moon days. It is an inauspicious planet. (For details see under Rahu).


9) Ketu. His chariot is drawn by eight horses, which have the speed of wind. It is also an inauspicious planet.


10) Saptarsis. Thirteen crores of yojanas away from the zone of gani exists the Saptarsi zone. Seven maharsis are incessantly on the move in that sphere, wishing all that is well for the whole world. (See Saptarsis).


11) Dhruva. Thirteen crores of yojanas away from the saptarsimandala there is a place called Visnupada. Dhruva, son of Uttanapada lives there in the company of Indra, Agni, Kasyapa, Dharma and others. The Dhruvamandala remains there stationary like the supporting pillar of all the planets ever on the move. (See Dhruva; Devibhagavata 8th Skandha; Visnu Purana, Part II).


Astrologers aver that living beings pass through the periods and positions of the following planets, viz. Ketu, gukra (Venus) Aditya (Sun), Candra (Moon), Kuja (Mars), Rahu, Brhaspati (Jupiter), gani (Saturn) and Budha (Mercury), The following table shows how people born under different stars pass through the different dasas. The order of succession of the dasas and the period of each dada can also be seen from this table.


Stars (Day of birth) 1  Dada


Asvini Magha Mula Ketu

GRAHAPIDA. (Adverse planetary effects on children) Astrologers hold the view that planets affect or exercise some influence on the lives of people. According to that given hereunder is a brief description of planets, which affect a child from its very birth as also of remedial measures to keep the child free from such adverse planetary effects.


On the very day of the birth of the child a female planet called Papini affects it as a result of which it will refuse all food and be lying turning its head this way and that. Papini will tap the health not only of the child but of the mother also. Bali (sacrificial offering with flesh, fish and liquor as also'wavmg with flowers and fragrant materials and lighted lamp, and smearing, the child's body with sandal paste, mancetti powder, tatiri flower, bark of pachotti, are remedies against the attack of Papini. Burning of buffalo dung also is useful.


On the second night after the birth of the child another female planet called Bhisani attacks it. Symptoms of the attack are coughing, deep breath and shrinking of bodily organs. "The remedies for the attack are: smearing of the.body with paste made in sheep's urine of tippali (long pepper), ramacca, root of "Katalati" and sandalwood. The child should also be exposed to the fumes got by burning the horn tooth and hairs or the cow. And, with the above-mentioned things Bali should be offered to the planet.


On the third night the female planet called Ghantali affects the child. Frequent crying, yawning, shivering and loss of appetite are the main symptoms of the attack. Smearing the body with a paste of lotus styles, anjana stone and tooth of cow and elephant mired with goat's skin is a good remedy for the illness. The child should be treated with the fumes got by burning the leaves of naguna (a tree) and bilva and Bali as aforesaid should also be offered.


Kakoli (female planet) affects the child on the fourth night. Shivering, loss of appetite, frothing and wandering of the eyes are the main symptoms of the attack. In this case Bali should be offered with liquor and flesh; the body should be smeared with a paste in horse's urine of elephant's tusk and the outer skin of snakes. The child should also be subjected to the fume of tamarind and, margosa leaves.


Hamsadhika (female planet) affects the child on the fifth night. Yawning, breathing out alone and closing of fingers are the main symptoms of the attack. Bali with


t. To find out your da'sa at the time of birth, please see the above table. Any one born under any of the stars is considered born in the dasa shown in the right hand side against that star ; e. g. People born under (A'svayuk) A'svini, Mrga'sirsa and Mnla are born into the Ketu. da'sa. So with the other stars also ac shown in the above table. To calculate how long the dasa into which a particular person is born will last requires some astrological skill ; also the exact time of birth should be known. A star remains dominant for about Zf hours. If a man is born under a star when half this period of dominance is over, then that man will act only half a he period of the corresponding dasa. The portion of the dasa that the man will get is proportionate to the period of dominance of the star. For example, a man is born under the star A'svaini (A'svyuk) when the star is in the last quarter of the Ketu da'si. The total period of this da'sa is 7 years. But the man will get only the last quarter of it, namely about i g years. After that he will pass on to the next dasa-- Sukradasa.


Phalkari (female planet) attacks the child on the sixth night. Startling, fainting, waking frequently from sleep and crying much, loss of appetite and turning the body round and round are the chief symptoms of the attack. In this case bali with fish etc. is called for. The child is also to be exposed to the fumes produced by the burning of dried tamarind, gulgulu, Kottam and elephant's tusk.


Muktakesi (female planet) attacks the child on the seventh night. Bad odour, yawning, weakening of body and cough form the main symptoms of the attack. Exposure to fumes produced by burning leopard's teeth and the smearing of the body with a paste made of orris root and cow's dung and urine should also be done.


S`Lidandi (female planet) attacks the child on the eighth night. Wandering of the eyes, crying and also making a barking noise and quick movement of the tongue are the main symptoms. Bali with fish etc. and smearing the body with a paste of orris root, mustard seed and garlic are the treatment for the attack.


The terrible female planet, LJrdhvagrahi attacks the child on the ninth night. Startling, breathing out alone and biting the fists of both hands form the chief symptoms of the attack. Smearing of the body with a paste of red sandalwood, Costus speciosus etc. and exposure to fumes produced by burning the hairs and nail of the monkey are remedies for the illness.


Rodani attacks the child on the tenth night. Incessant crying and bodily fragrance and blue colour are the main symptoms of the attack. Exposure to fume produced by burning margosa leaves and application of a paste made of orris root, tamarind are good remedies. Bali should be offered with fried paddy, flesh and barley rice. For thirteen days from its birth the child should be treated in the above manner.


A terrible female planet called Putana attacks the child when it is one month old. Crying like the crow, frequent breathing, smell of urine on the body and reddening of the eyes are the chief symptoms of the attack. Remedies thereof are as follows : bathing in cow's urine and exposure to the fumes got by burning cow's teeth, bali to be offered with yellow clothes. red flower, red sandalwood, lamps lighted, three varieties of payasa (pudding), liquor, gingelly seeds and flesh. Bali with the above materials should be offered for seven days under an `Ung' tree on the southern side.


Mukuta, (female planet) attacks the child two .months old. Coldness of the body, vomiting, parching of mouth etc. are the chief symptoms. Remedy for the attack is offering of bali with flower, Sandalwood, clothes and bread (all black in colour) and lighting of lamps and fuming.


Gomukhi attacks the child, in the third month. Abnormal sleep, exessive urination etc. are the main symptoms of the attack. Bali in the morning with barley, flesh, milk, rice etc. and exposure to the fumes of ghee at noon are the treatment for the illness. To bathe the child in water boiled with the leaves of five trees is also good,


Pingala attacks the child, when it is four months old. Excessive coldness of body, bad odour and emaciation of body are the main signs of the attack. Pingala's attack often proves fatal.


During the fifth month the planet Lalana attacks the child. Weakness, blood coming out of the mouth, and excretion yellow in colour are the main symptoms of the attack. Bali with fish etc. on the southern side of the house is the treatment for it.


Pankaja attacks the child during the sixth month. Various kinds of awkward movements, crying in awkward and peculiar voice are the main symptoms of the attack. Offerings of liquor, fish, flesh, rice, flowers etc. will cure the illness.


During the seventh month Nirahara attacks the child. Bad odour, tooth-ache etc. are the main symptoms. Bali with fish, flesh etc. is the cure.


Yamuna attacks the child during the eighth month. Skin eruptions etc. are the chief symptoms. No special treatment is required for this.


During the ninth month Kumbhakarni attacks the child. Fever, vomiting and abnormal crying form the chief symptorhs. Bali with flesh anti liquor is the cure for it.


Tapasi attacks the child during the tenth month. Refusing to eat food and rolling of the eye-balls form the main symptoms. Bali on level ground with flesh etc. is the remedy for it.


During the eleventh month Raksasi attacks the child. No treatment is ca1led for.


Caficala attacks the child during the twelfth month. Breathing problems, palpitation etc. are the main symptoms. Bali during the first half of the day with Kalmasa etc. is the remedy.


During the second year of its life the child is attacked by Rodani. Shivering of the body, crying and emission of blood and urine form the main symptoms. In such cases bali should be offered with pudding of molasses and gingelly seeds made into small balls. Also an. idol should be made of gingelly seeds and it should be bathed in gingelly water. The child should further be exposed to the fumes got by burning the leaves of five trees.


Catuka (a female planet) attacks the child during the fourth year. Fever, swellings, and weakness of limbs are the main symptoms. Bai with fish, flesh, gingelly seeds and also fuming form the treatment.


Pancal.a attacks the child when it is five years old. Fever, weakness of limbs are the symptoms. Bali with flesh, rice, etc. and fuming with the excretion of sheep form the treatment. Bathing in water boiled with leaves of jack fruit tree, peepal tree etc. is also good.


Dhavani attacks the child when it is six years old. Thinning of face, tastelessness of mouth and weakness of limbs are the main symptoms in such cases. Bali for seven days with the above-mentioned things and bathing in kanjunny (Bhrngaraja creeper) water are the treatment.


Yavana attacks the child in the seventh year. Speechlessness, vomiting, laughing and crying for no apparent reason form the symptoms. Bali with liquor, flesh, pudding etc. and fuming and bathing form the treatment.


Jataveda attacks the child in the eighth year. The child refuses food and cries. Bali with cooked gingelly, gingelly bread and curds, and bathing and fuming form the treatment.


Kala (Kali) attacks the child during the ninth year. Feelings of fear, roaring etc. are the symptoms. Bali with gingelly rice, gingelly bread, gingelly powder, Kalmasa and pudding form the treatment.


Kalaharimsi attacks the child during the tenth year. Fever, burning sensation and emaciation are the symptoms. Bali for five days with bread called Paulik and rice mixed with ghce, exposure to fumes of margosa leaf and smearing the body with a paste of Kottam form the treatment.


Devabhuti attacks the child when it is eleven years old. Then he will utter harsh and cruel words. Bali and smearing as above form the treatment.


Valika attacks the child in the 12th year. Frequent hiccoughs is the symptom. Treatment is the same as above.


Vayasi attacks the child when it is 13 years old. All the limbs except the facA get emaciated. Treatmqnt is as follows : bali with red rice, red sandal-wood and red flowers; bath in water boiled with the leaves offive trees; and exposure to the fumes of margosa and mustard.


Yaksini attacks the child when it is fourteen years old. Awkward physical expressions, stomach-ache, fever and thirst are the symptoms. Bali with flesh, rice etc. and bathing etc. as above form the treatment.


Mundika attacks the child when it is fifteen years old. Various kinds of pains, bleeding etc. are the symptoms. The mother of the child is to be treated for this.


Vanari attacks the child during the 16th year. Falling down, continuous sleep and fever form the symptoms. Bali during three nights with pudding etc. and bathing and fuming as above form the treatment.


Gandhavati attacks the child during the seventeenth year. Agitation of limbs and crying are the symptoms. Bali with Kalmasa etc. and bathing and fuming as above form the treatment.


The following mantra should be repeated in all balis and gifts.


Orir namah sarvamatrbhyo ba1apidasarfiyogarh bhunja bhunja cuta cuta Sphotaya sphotaya sphura sphura grhana grhana akattaya akattaya kattaya kattaya evam siddharupo jnapayati hara liars nirdose kuru kuru balikarim balaih stiiyarir purusarir va sarvagrahanamupakramat-camunde namo devyai hrurh hrurh hrim apasara dustagrahan hram tadyatha gacchantu grhyatam anyatra panthanamrudro jnapayati. (Agni Purana, Chapter 299 ).


GRAMADEVATA. India is predominantly a rural country with a number of villages, and the rural folk depend mainly upon a-griculture for living. Agricultural land, rain and epidemics which affect them as well as their cattle-these are the main concern of the villagers. Indians, from very ancient days, used to believe that each of the above has its own presiding devatas. Such devatas are the gramadevatas. the chief gramadevata of South India. Devi is called Durga and Kali also. But, Devi is worshipped in gentle Devi , three forms, Kanya, Karnak si, and Mukambika. In Kerala Devi is called Bhagavati also. Valiyangadi Bhagavati of Calicut is Laksmidevi. Kali temples in Karnataka are called `Kottapurarii Laksmi Ksetras'. There are such sixtyfour different forms or aspects. The viz. in her gentle aspect or attitude has


temples in Andhra, also. Most of them are Tokulambika temples. In Tamil Nadu there are gramadevatas called Mariyamma, Kaliyamma, and Draupadiyamma. Not the Draupadi mentioned in the Mahabharata; but the Kannaki of Cilappadikara is the Devi- worshipped in Tamil Nadu.


There are two kinds of Devis called Saptamatrs and Saptakanyas. Saptamatrs have purusas (husbands) and saptakanyas have seven brothers for help and support. Devi pfrja is very much prevalent in South India. The custom is supposed to be as old as 5000 B.C. Idols of Devi have been unearthed from Mohanjo-daro and Harappa. Even the Buddhists worship the Devis called Yaksi and Hariti. When in after years Hinduism was revitalised these gramadevatas got promoted as the great Devatas of the epics and the Puranas. The Ramayana mentions the incident of the Devi called Lankalaksmi driving away Hanuman. There are famous Kali temples in Ujjayini and Calcutta. It is believed that in the temple at Cidambaram also Kali occupied a prominent place. But, according to legends, diva defeated Kali in a dance competition and ousted her to her present temple at the outskirts of the city. Camundi is worshipped as the ancestral guardian deity in Mysore. The Kamaksi temple of Kanci, Minaksf temple of Madura and Mukambika temple of North Karnataka may be cited as examples for the worship of the gentle form of Devi. Alarmel Marikattayar temple- at Tiruccanur is a very important Devi temple. The `Aditi' in the Vedas and Kottravai of Tamil Sangha texts point to the very long past of the Devi in India. Kalidasa and Kalamegha (a Tamil poet of the fifteenth century have worshipped Kali. Sri Ramakrsna Paramaharirsa and the great modern Tamil poet Bharat! were devotees of Kali.


There are also gramadevas worshipped like the gramadevatas. Munisvara and Karuppan are two prominent gramadevas. In certain villages Bhairava, Vira, hula, Katteri and Noirgi are worshipped as gramadevas. In South Karnataka a set of Devas called Bhutas are worshipped, Pancuruli being one of them. pasta or Ayyappa is another gramadeva. pasta is most popular in Kerala and in Tamil Nadu. Buddha also is called pasta. In certain places idols of pasta with two wives, called Purna and Puskala are also found. Sabarimala S`asta is yogamurti (in yogic pose).


In most of the gramadeva temples idols of the Devas are not found. A piths ( stool-like seat) is supoosed as the seat of the Deva and it represents the Deva also. But, in some temples weapons like the sword, the club etc. are found. Offerings to the deity in gramaksetras and annual festivals are common in such temples. ( Nam vanamgurir daivarirgal-Tamil).


GRAMANy. A bhutagana (set of attendants) of diva. Sins of those who worship this gana will be' removed. (Anusasana Parva, Chapter 150, Verse 25) .


GRAMANTYA. One born in the family of the Ksatriya, who is the governor of village. Nakula defeated the graman3yas during the conquest of lands in connection with the asvamedha of Dharmaputra. (Sabha Parva; Chapter 32, Verse 9) .


GRANTHIKA. Name assumed' by Nakula during his life incognito at the Virata. palace.. (Virata Parva, Chapter 3, Verse 4) .


GRDDHRAKOTA. A mountain of northern India. The Lamsuras gave protection to Brhadratha at this mountain. (Sloka 82, Chapter 49, S`anti Parva).


GRDDHRAPATRA. A soldier of Skandadeva, (Sloka 74, Chapter 45, Salya Parva).


GRDDHRAVATA. A mount of the Himalayas. This mount is the abode of,Mahadeva. Those brahmins who visit this place would get moksa and those of other castes would be absolved of all sins. (Sloka 91, Chapter 84, Vana Parva.


GRDDHRIKA. A bird. Kasyapa begot of his wife ;Tamra, the six birds namely Kaki, Syeni, Bhasi, Grddhrika, Suci and Griva. (Agni Purana, Chapter 19)


GREEK LITERATURE. Greek is one of the most important Indo-European languages. As an independent branch of the original Indo-European language Greek established itself by about 2000 B.C. Even during its earliest period Greek had four local dialects as a result of the arrival of the Greek-speaking people at different periods of time. Iolic, Ionic-Attic, Arcado Cyprean and- western Greek are the four dialects. Iolese was prevalent in the Lesbos region, and this is the dialect mainly used in the poetry of Homer. The Ionic and Attic dialects were prevalent in Ionia and Attica respectively. After Homer, the major portion of Greek literature was written in this dialect. The Arcado-Cyprean dialect was used in Arcadio and Cyprus. The fourth dialect was also called Doric.


Naval traditions, commerce and political power contributed to the growth and development of Greek language and literature. In each dialect, even from the very beginning, literary efforts were made. Each of the four spoken languages very soon developed into a written language. But, in the very initial periods each of the spoken dialects continued its existence in the form of ballads and songs transferred from one man to another. It was Homer who gave those popular ballads an epic form and status and sowed the seeds of the great literature of Greece.


The golden period of Greek literature was when the city of Athens enjoyed supreme political power. Literature during the period set the model for future generations. It was during this' period that Greek achieved the best in different literary forms like tragedy, comedy, lyric, elegy, history, philosophy, oratory etc. Pindar, Aeschylus, Herodotus, Sophocles-Euripides, Aristophanes, Thucydides, Plato and Demosthenesthese are distinguished names who were responsible for the .great development of the literary forms referred to above.


Greek literature passed the Alexandrian, Roman and Byzantian periods before it arrived at the modern period. It was Solomos and Valoritus and others who gave impetus and inspiration to modern Greek literature.


GRHADEV I. Another name of the demoness Jara. (See under Jara).


GRHAPATI. A sage. There is a story in diva Purana about this sage.


Visvanara father of Grhapati was living with his wife Sucismati in a hermitage on the, banks of the river Narmada. They had no children and ',~,ucismati, was grieved much on this account. She requested her husband find out ways and means to get a child. Visvanara, who use abusive language (8) with smasru (hair on line features (10) with


went to Kasi and did penance to propitiate Visvesvara and the God appeared before him and blessed him and said: "You will soon get a son". Very soon the wife of Vi'svanara delivered a child. and the son was named Grhapati. When the child was nine years old Narada came there once and warned them against fire. Visvanara immediately went and did penance to propitiate giva and obtained from him for his son the qualities of fire also so that fire would be unable to act on him. It was on account of this that Grhapati when he installed an idol of giva at Kai gave it the name of Agnisvara.


GRHASTHA. In ancient India the life of a male person was divided into four stages, namely, Brahmacarya Garhasthya, Vanaprastha and Sannyasa. He who is in the second stage of life is called a Grhastha.


When a person marries, he becomes a Grhastha. The bride should have certain qualities to be an ideal wife. The girl should be only a third of the age of the male. She should not have hair either too much or too little. She should not be black or of a pingala hue. She should not have any of her organs extra at the time of birth. The following types of girls are to be avoided for marriage. (1) Girls bred up by low-caste people (2) girls with hair over the body(3) not born of a good family (4) sick ones (5) ill-natured ones (6) girls (7) with hereditary diseases the face) (9) girls with mascuthe sound of males (11) lean ones (12) with the voice of a crow (13), with thick eyelashes (14) round eyes. Again avoid girls having hair on their legs, raised heels and those with small depressions on their cheeks when they laugh. Girls whose bodies are too bright, with white nails, red eyes and fat hands and legs are not good for marriage. Girls too tall or too short, with eyelashes touching each other, with broad and raised teeth are to be avoided. A true Grhastha is one who marries a girl who is separated from him by five generations on the maternal side and seven generations on the paterna1 side.


A true Grhastha should daily worship devas, cows, brahmins, scholars, old men and preceptors. He should worship sandhya (dawn and dusk) daily and also fire. He should wear on his body leaves of Visnukranti, Karuka (couch grass), Tulasi (holy basil plant). He should appear neat and smart wearing good dress, with white flowers on his well combed head. He should never steal, speak unpleasant words to anybody nor speak an untruth even if it be pleasant. He should not openly speak about the sins of others. He should not covet another man's wife. He should not travel in a damaged vehicle nor should he sit under the shade of a tree on the banks of a river. A Grhastha should not mingle with such persons as (1) men hated by the people (2) outcastes from society (3) insane men (4) those having a great number of enemies (5) those who torment others (6) prostitutes (7) husbands of prostitutes (8) those who use abusive language (9) those who tell lies ( 10) spendthrifts ( 11) scandalmongers and (12) rogues. Never travel alone. He should not bathe against the flow in a river. Never enter a house on fire nor climb to the extreme top of trees. He should not grind his teeth, squeeze out his nose, yawn without covering the mouth. breathe or spit, with the face covered, laugh noisily, breathe out with a sound, bite the teeth, pinch grasses or write or draw on the ground (Amsa 3, Visnu Purina).


GRIVA. A, daughter in bird form born to Kasyapaprajapati by his wife Tamra. Griva had the fo1lowing sisters, Kaki, Syeni, Bhasi, Grddhrika and Suci, all birds. (Agni Purina, Chapter 1).


GRTSAMADA I. A celebrated sage. He was the son of a sage called Vitahavya. Grtsamada was equal to Brhaspati and a great friend of Indra. Once this sage lectured to Yudhisthira on the glory of Siva. Many have mistaken Grtsamada for Indra. Once the asuras bound him by ropes mistaking him for Indra. He had a son named Kuceta. (For more details see under Varistha) (Chapters 18 and 30, Anu4asana Parva).


GRTSAMADA II. A King of the Bhargava dynasty. He was the son of King Suhotra. Grtsamada had two brothers. Kisya and Kusa, and a son, Sunaka. (9th Skandha, Bhagavata) .


GRTSAMADA III. The son born to Indra of Mukunda. There is the following story about him'in Ganesa Purina.


Once when Rukmangada was out from the palace, Indra, in the guise of Rulcmangada, went to Mukunda, wife of Rukmangada, and slept with her who was at that time sexually hungry. She delivered a child in due course. This, boy was Grtsamada. He grew into a great scholar. obody was able to defeat him in any verbal duel. Once Grtsamada went to the palace of the king of Magadha to attend a Sraddha (an offering to the manes) along with Vasistha and others.


Atri Maharsi who was present there then spoke slightingly of Grtsamada's parentage and Grtsamada coming


home questioned his mother. The mother then told him what had happened and Grtsamada getting angry at the immoral act committed by his mother cursed her and said "May you be a Kantaka tree". Mukunda also did not leave her son free. She cursed him thus "You will have a demon as your son". But Grtsamada went and did penance to propitiate Ganapati and got Brahmanya.


GRTSAPATI. He was the son of Kapila, a King of the Puru dynasty. He had a brother called Kaugika. Grtsapati had sons in all the four castes, namely, Brahmana, Ksatriya, Vaigya and 9udra. (Chapter 277, Agni Purina).


GUDAKESA. Another name of Arjuna. He got the name because he conquered sleep. (8loka 8, Chapter 138, Adi Parva).


GLTDHASENA. A King of the country of Puskaravati.


GUHA. King of the country of Nisadas alias grngiverapura, on the banks of the river Ganga. Sri Rama when he went on exile to the forests went to the residence of Guha accompanied by Laksmana and Sita. Guha, a devotee of Rama, received them with respect offering them many kinds of fruits and roots to eat. But Sri Rama said that it was not proper to accept fruits and roots and so he drank only pure water from him. But Guha was asked to feed his horse. At night when Laksmana stood watch over Rama and Sita,-Guha volunteered to stand guard but Laksmana refused to


accept the offer. So Guha kept company with Laksmana and both of them spent the night talking to each other. In the morning as per Rama's request Guha brought a canoe and Guha himself took Rama, Laksmana and


Sita to the other side of the river. (Sarga , 50, Valmiki Ramayana, Ayodhya Kanda).


Guha is seen next when Bharata comes to the forest in search of Rama. When Bharata returned from Kekaya he went in search of Sari Rama and Laksmana and came to Guha in grfigiverapura. Guha then gave Bharata all available information regarding Sri Rama. Guha then sent the Dasa army along with Bharata. (Sarga 84, Ayodhya Kanda, Valmiki Ramayana).


Guha, chief of grngiverapura, . spent the night with Rama and Laksmana under an Oka tree. (Chaper 6, Agni Purina) .


GUHA (S). t1 tribe of people of ancient India. Andhras, Pulindas, Cucukas, Guhas, gabaras and Bhadras are some of the tribes of the south. (9loka 42, Chapter 207, 8 anti Parva).


GUHASENA. See under Devasmita.


GUHYAKA. A Yaksa. (A division of Yaksas who were prominent members of the court of Kubera). They were present at the marriage of Draupadi. (9loka 7, Chapter 186, Adi Parva).


Other details.


(i) The palace of Kubera in the sky is borne by Guhyakas. (Sloka 3, Chapter 10, Sabha Parval .


(ii) Bhimasena slew many Guhyakas on the mountain of Gandhamadana. (gloka' 55, Chapter 11, Saalya Parva).


(iii) Some of the soldiers who died in the Mahabharata battle went to the world of the Guhyakas. (Sloka 23, Chapter 4, Svargarohana Parva).


GULIKA. A hunter who was given moksa by the sage Uttanga. This hunter once made an attempt to steal the gold plates on the roof of the Visnu temple at the palace of Sauvira. Uttanga was present at the temple then and, Gulika tried to kill the ,sage. The sage cursed him and. killed him. Taking pity on him later Uttanga sprinkled some water from the river Ganga, on him and the hunter attained Vaikuntha. (Naradiya Purina).


GUNA. See under Pattu (Ten).


GUNADHYA. He is the author of the celebrated Brhatkatha which is a precious mine of Sanskrit Literature. Gunadhya had written this in satanic (pais acika) language difficult for ordinary people to read or understand. This was translated into Sanskrit by the poet Ksemendra in a book called Brhatkathamanjari. This was the first translation and it was in an abridged form. Somadeva made a more elaborate translation and it is this translation that is now known as the Kathisaritsagara.


Gunadhya is believed to be an incarnation of the Sivaparsada, Malyavan. There is a story behind Malyavan being cursed and made to be born as man by Parvati. Once Parvat! worried Siva to tell her a story original and interesting and not heard of by anybody before. Placing Nandike4a at the door and instructing him not to allow anybody inside Siva started narrating the story of the Vidyadharas to Parvati. At that time Puspadanta, chief of the genie-guards of Siva who was at liberty to go to the presence of Siva at any time, came there and heedless of the protests of Nandikesa entered the room. There he found Siva telling a story to P5rvati and she was hearing the same with rapt attention. The story was so interesting that Puspadanta also heard it standing concealed in a place in the room. After having heard the whole story Puspadanta went back unnoticed and told the story to his wife, Jaya. Jaya on another occasion told the story to Parvati and the, latter was taken aback and she went to 8iva and complained: "Your Lordship told me that the story was unique, not heard of before by anybody. But even Jaya knows it." And she wept with disappointment. Then 8iva stood in meditation for sometime, and knew how Puspadanta had entered the room unnoticed and how he had told the story he had heard to Jaya. 8iva explained this to Parvati and she immediately sent word for Puspadanta who came trembling and confessed everything. Parvati then cursed Puspadanta and also Malyavan who came to speak on behalf of Puspadanta and made them men. They begged for relief from the curse and then she said, "Long ago Vaisravana cursed a Yaksa named Supratika and converted him into a devil named Kanabhuti. This devil is now living in the deep forests on the Vindhya mountains. When you talk with him you will become your old selves again. Puspadanta should first tell the story he has heard from 8iva to Kanabhuti and then he will be relieved from the curse. Kanabhuti will then tell MWyavan many stories. Then Kanabhuti will get release from the curse. Malyavan should make public all the stories he had heard from Kanabhuti and then he will also get release from the curse." Accordingly Puspadanta was born as Vararuci in the city of KauSdrhbi and Malyavan as Gunadhya in the city of Supratisthita. (For details see under Vararuci) .


The story of how Supratika became Kanabhuti is this: The Yaksa, Supratika, got friendly 'with a demon named 8uWiras and they moved about freely as chums. Vaisravana did not like this and he cursed Supratika and converted him into a satan. At once; Dirghajangha, elder brother of Supratika, came and begged for relief. Vaisravana then said: "Puspadanta will be born on the earth by a curse as man and he will one day come and tell Supratika many great stories. After hearing them he should narrate them to Malyavan who will then be born on the earth as man. Supratika will then get release from the curse and become his old self again". Supratika was born in the forests of Vindhya as Kanabhuti.


This is the story of the birth of Gunadhya. There is a city called Supratisthita in the country of Pratisthana and there lived a Brahmin named Somagarma. He had two sons, Vatsa and Gulmaka and a daughter named 8rutartha. Before long the parents died and 8rutartha grew up under the protection of her.brothers. Kirtisena, brother of Vasuki, married her by gandharva -rites and Gunadhya was the child born to them.


Even while he was a boy he went to the south for his education and there from a brahmin he studied all arts and sciences. When he completed his studies he started on a tour and at that time became the minister of a king cal1ed Satavahana. He married from there. One day his (Satavahana's) wife rebuked the king when the latter made some linguistic errors and Satavahana became dejected and moody from that day onwards. Then there came to the court of the King a Brahmin named 8arvavarman who promised to make the King proficient in 1anguages within six months. But Gunadhya said -that it was not possible to do so within six months. They made a bet. Gunadhya swore that if 8arvavarman would teach the King the 8abdasastra (science of language-sounds)


within six months he (Gunadhya) would abandon his knowledge of Sanskrit, Prakrit and local language. On the other hand if garvavarma failed to accomplish the feat the latter should wear on his head for twelve years the chappals of Gunadhya. Sarvavarman agreed and went to do penance to please Subrahmariya. Subrahmanya granted him a boon by the power of which ~arvavarman made Satavahana a scholar in Sanskrit. Defeated, Gunadhya abandoned his knowledge of all languages and bidding adieu to the King by. gestures left for the Vindhyan forests.


When Gunadhya went to the forests Kanabhuti, King of the Satans was not in his place. He heard the satans speaking in their peculiar language and intelligent that he was he picked up the language. and when Kanabhixti came he spoke to him in his own language. Kanabhuti told in the satanic language the great stories of seven Vidyadharas. Gufiadhya took seven years to write the stories in the satanic language and compile them into seven lakhs of granthas to form a Mahakavya. There were no writing materials available for him and Gunadhya wrote them all on leaves using blood and twigs. When he started reading his book all the devas assembled in the sky to hear it. On hearing it Kanabhuti got release from the curse. It is this book containing seven lakhs of granthas that is called the Brhatkatha.


Gunadhya then thought of how to keep alive such an interesting and gigantic book and then two of his companions Gunadeva and Nandideva suggested to him to dedicate the book to the King, Satavahana. Gunadhya agreed to that and the two disciples took the book to the King. The King read the whole story. But did not like it. It was very elaborate. The language was satanic. It was written with blood. The King looked at the book with contempt.


When the disciples found that the King was not in favour of the work, they took it back to Gunadhya. Gunadhya felt a great dejection. He went to a hillock nearby with his disciples and made a big fire-pit. He set aside the story of the Vidyadhara named Naravahanadatta composed of a lakh of granthas for the use of his disciples and then started putting into the fire-pit the rest, reading aloud each leaf before he put it into the fire. The sad disciples watched it weeping. Even the wild animals of the forest flocked to the place and stood. there listening to Gunadhya. At that time Satavahana became a sick man. The physicians of the palace said that the illness was caused by the dry flesh he was taking. The cook was called in and he accused the hunters who supplied them with flesh daily. The hunters were questioned and they informed the King that only such flesh was available since all the beasts and birds were standing without food listening to a man who was reading something from a leaf and then burning it in a fire-pit before him. Satavahana immediately went to the place guided by the hunters. There to his astonishment he found Gunadhya sitting before a fire-pit surrounded by weeping beasts and birds and throwing leaves of his book one by one into the fire after reading each before it was put into the, fire. Satavahana ran to him and prostrated before him. Gunadhya then told Satavahana his story in satanic language beginning from the curse on Puspadanta down to his destroying his own work in the fire. His disciples translated his talk to the King. The King was awe-strickeA and he asked for the granthas. But by that time he had already burnt six lakhs of granthas containing six stories. He gave to the King the remaining one lakh of granthas. After that, bidding farewell to the King, Gunadhya jumped into the fire and abandoned his life on earth and went to the presence of Siva.


King Satavahana accompanied by the disciples of Gunadhya came to his palace carrying the `Brhatkatha' containing the story of Naravahanadatta. He gave presents to Gunadeva and Nandideva who explained to him the book in Sanskrit. King Satavahana added a preface to the book to explain to the public how the book came to be written in satanic language. The book very soon got world fame. (Pithanulambaka Kathasarit sagara).


GUNAKESI. Daughter of Matali, charioteer of Indra. She was more beautiful and well-behaved than many other girls. Matali went about in search of a suitable husband for her in all the three worlds. At last he met Narada going to the presence of Kubera. He told Narada about this and Narada took Matali to Patalaloka to search for a suitable bridegroom. Then they found out a serpent boy named Sumukha (good looking) worthy of his name who was the grandson of Aryaka and son of Cikura born of the family of Airavata. But Sumukha was in danger at that time. Garuda had taken a vow that he would eat Sumukha the next month. Aryaka told Narada about this. Narada took Sumukha to the court of Indra. Mahavisnu was also present there. When Narada told the story there Indra blessed Sumukha and granted him long life. This made Garuda angry and he went to the court of Indra and rebutted Indra. Mahavisnu who was present there then did not like this act of Garuda and he ca1led the latter to his side and asked him whether he could bear the weight of one of his arms. With arrogance Garuda said `yes' and Visnu then placed one of his arms on the shoulder of Garuda But Garuda found the weight unbearable and begged pardon off Visnu, bereft of all his arrogance. The marriage of Sumukha with Gunakes i was then conducted. (Chapters 97 to 165. Udyoga Larva. )


GUNAMUKHYA. A celestial maiden who took part in the birthday celebrations of Arjuna. She gave a dance there then. (Sloka 61, Chapter 122, Adi Parva).


GUNANIDHI. A Puranic character who lived a sinful life and yet attained Svarga. In the country of Kosala there was once a noble brahmin named Girinatha who was rich, erudite and well-versed in the Vedas. Considering his greatness people called him Girinathadiksita. Gunanidhi was his son.


When Gunanidhi grew up he started his education under a preceptor called Sudhisna. Sudhisna had a wife named Muktavali. After some time Gunanidhi started having clandestine relations with Muktavali. This developed so much that Gunanidhi gave poison to his guru and killed him. His parents came to know of this and they came and reprimanded him. Evilnatured Gunamdhi thought that the presence of his parents would be an annoyance to him in future. So Gunanidhi and Muktavali planned together to kill his parents and one day they poisoned them.


After some time Gunanidhi and his wife lost all they had and gradually bunanidhi turned himself into a thief and drunkard. Nobody in the village liked the couple and all the villagers combined together and sent the couple away from the place. Gunanidhi and Muktavali went to the forests and there they started a life of looting the travellers. After some years of a sinful life Gunanidhi one day died lying beneath a Rudraksa tree. Servants of both Yama and Siva came to claim the soul of Gunanidhi. The servants of Yama said that the right place of Gunanidhi the sinner, was in hell but the servants of Siva said that even if he was a great sinner his place was in heaven because he died lying beneath a Rudraksa tree. In the end the Sivadutas won and took Gunanidhi to heaven.


This story was once told by Siva himself to demonstrate the glory of Rudraksa. (Skandha 11, Devi Bhagavata)


GUNASARMAN. A character of the Puranas well versed in all arts and sciences. He was the son of the brahmin Adityasarman of Ujjayini. The birth of Gunasarman bears a story. Once Adityafiarman went to the forests and by his spiritual powers made Sulocana, a celestial nymph, to merge with him. A son was born to them and he was named Gunasarman. Aditya,,arman became a deva. Even from boyhood he became very erudite. Once Indra came to see Adityasarman. Adityasarman who was in deep thoughts did not see Indra and so did not rise up when Indra came. Indra felt insulted and cursed him to be born again on Earth. Adityasarman prostrated before Indra and asked for pardon. Indra then said that it would be enough if his son was born on Earth in his stead. So Gunawarman was born on Earth to bear the curse of his father.


At that time Ujjayini was being ruled over by a King called Mahasena. He had a very beautiful wife named A• okavati. Gunasarman became gradually an intimate friend of the king. Knowing that Gunasarman was well versed in all arts the King and queen asked him to give them a performance in dancing. The dance was so excellent that the King engaged Gunasarman to teach dancing to Asokavati.


Once a royal attendant tried to give poisoned food to the King and Gunasarman finding it out saved the King. From that day onwards the King loved him more. When once Mahasena was imprisoned by his enemies Gunasarman by his magic powers released him. In return for this help the King gave Guna4arman a thousand villages.


Then to the misfortune of all Mokavati fell in love with Guna,5arman. Gunasarman bluntly refused her love. Embittered at this Mokavati started talking ill of Gunasarman and the King at last sent Gunasarman out from the palace. The servants of the King tried to capture him and put him into prison but Gunasarman escaped from the royal servants by his magic powers.


He then went and stayed in the house of a brahmin named Agnidatta and married his daughter, Sundari. Then on the advice of the brahmin Gunasraman did penance to propitiate Subrahmanya and got many more powers from him. Gunaarman equipped with these, additional powers conquered Maliasena and his country and became King there. He then sent Mahasena and his wife A€okavati, out from the country. (Suryaprabhalariibaka, Taranga 6, Kathasaritsagara).


GUNAVARA. A heroine, devoted to her husband, in the ancient literature of India. There is a story in Kathasaritsagara describing the depth of her devotion to her husband.


Gunavara was the queen of Virabhuja, King of the country of Vardhamana. He had besides Gunavara ninetynine other wives. But none had any children. So, the King asked the chief physician of the state to suggest a, way to remedy this. The physician asked for a white and horned goat to be brought and he then made with its flesh a preparation. Then sprinkling over it a special medicinal dust, he gave it to the wives to eat. But Gunavara who never left her husband for a moment came late to take the preparation and by the time she came the others had already consumed the whole lot. Then by an order of the King the horns of the goat were made into a similar preparation and Gunavara took it with the dust sprinkled over it. All the wives got a child each. Gunavara's son was named Srhgabhuja.


All the other wives of Virabhuja became jealous of Gunavara. They told the King that Gunavara was in love with a servant of the palace. The King did not believe it. But he thought he would test her. The King called the servant in question and accusing him of having committed the murder of a brahmin sent him away from the state on a pilgrimage. Sorrow-stricken the servant set out for the pilgrimage. The King then approached Gunavara and said that a sannyasin had declared that he, the King, would lose his crown if one of his wives was not put in a cell underground. Gunavara who adored her husband readily agreed to live underground.


The other wives were satisfied and yet they wanted to send away her son, Srrigabhuja also from the palace. One day when all the children were playing in the court-yard a stork came and sat perched on the top of 'the palace. Tire princes attempted to catch hold of it. A sannyasin who came there then informed the children that the stork was none other than Agnisikha; a demon, who had come there to capture and take away the children. All the children then tried to drop it down by arrows. But none succeeded. Then Srrigabhuja took a golden arrow ~from the palace and sent it against the bird. The arrow struck the demon but the bird flew away carrying the golden arrow.


The other princes found it as an opportunity to rebuke Srfigabhuja and they, led by Nirvasabhuja, reproached him for losing the golden arrow. Unable to bear their insult Srrigabhuja went after the stork following the path of the blood drops which fell on the ground from the wound. At last he reached Dhumapura, the land of Agnisikha. There he fell in love with Rupasikha, the daughter of Agni~ikha. They were soon married and


ct Agnigikha gave SrfigabhuJa great trouble. At last hgabhuja and Rupasikha took the golden arrow and eloped from the place one night and reached the city of Vardhamana. Agnisikha followed them but the magic powers of Rupasikha made him turn back. When King Virabhuja saw his son Srngabhuja he was extremely happy. The King then released Gunavara from the dungeon and praised her for her devotion to her husband. He loved her more and treated her with greater


affection than before. At that time the servant who had been sent away also returned. (Tarafiga 5, Ratnaprabhalarirbaka, Kath5,saritsagara).


GUNAVARA. A celestial lady. This lady was present at the birthday celebration of Arjuna and gave there then a performance in dancing. (9loka 61, Chapter 122, Adi Parva).


GONAVARMAN. Adityasena, King of Ujjayini, had a wife named Tejasvati. Gunavarman was the father o€ Tejasvati. (Tarariga 4, Lavanakalarhbaka, Kathasaritsagara).


GUNAVATI I. Mother of Mandodari (See under Mandodari).


GUNAVATI II. Daughter born to Sunabha, younger brother of Vajranabha. She had an elder sister named Candramati. Prabhavati, daughter of Vajranabha, was married to Pradyumna, son of Sri Krsna. One day when Prabhavati and Pradyumna were engaged in amorous conversation Gunavati and Candramati came to them and they expressed a desire to get husbands for themselves from among the Yadavas. Prabhavati advised Candramati to marry Gada, brother of Krsna and Gunavati to marry Sarnba, son of Krsna. (Chapter 94. Harivarir,_~a) .


GUNAVATI. A river. Once Parw urama slew some Ksatriyas on the northern banks of this river. (Sloka 8, Chapter 70, Drona Parva).


GUPTA. A caste appellation. In ancient India appellations to the names were put to distinguish one caste from another. So `Sarma' was added to a brahmin name, `Varma' to a Ksatriya name 'Gupta' to a Vaisya name and `Dasa' to a Sudra name. Such appellations were considered to be a mark of nobility in those olden days. (Chapter 153, Agni Purana).


GUPTAKA. A prince of the country of Sauvira. He was a friend of the famous Jayadratha. In the great battle he was killed by Arjuna. (Sloka 27, Chapter 271, Vana Parva).


GLORNIKA. A companion of Devayani. (Chapter 78, Adi Parva) .


GURU. The following five persons are to be considered as gurus: Father, mother, Preceptor, Agni (Fire) and Atman (sou~, (Sloka 27, Chapter 214, Vana Parva).


GURUDARA. A son of Garuda. (Sloka 13, Chapter 10 1, U dyoga Parva).


GURUPARAMPARA. The origin of the Vedas and the lineage of Gurus is given below:


1) Origin of the Vedas. At the time of creation the Veda was born from the face of God. It contained a lakh of granthas with four padas like Rk. From the Veda were born the ten yajfias. The Veda was originally one. It was Vyasa who divided it into four divisions resulting in the four Vedas.


Vvasa divided the Vedas thus: When Brahma commanded Vyasa to divide the Vedas into divisions he first selected four disciples who could see the end of the Vedas. He accepted Paila to study 9gveda, Vais arirpayana to study Yajurveda, Jaimini to study Samaveda and Sumantu to study Atharvaveda. Besides these he selected the highly intelligent Romaharsana alias Sfita to study the Itihasas and Puranas.


At first, the Veda was one. Vyasa divided it into four. He based the division on the caturhotra, performance of four hotrs. He arranged the performance of Adhvaryu as Yajus, that of hotr as Rks, that of Udgatr as Samans and that of Brahma as Atharvans. Then he separated the Rks to form Rgveda, Yajus to form Yajurveda and Samans to form Samaveda. He devoted Atharvaveda to specify the rites and duties of Kings and the deeds of Brahma. Vedavyasa thus split the single Veda tree into four and from there arose later a forest of Veda trees. 2) The saints of Rgveda. Paila divided Rgveda into two sarirhitas and gave one each to Indrapramati and Baskala. Sage BBSkala divided his Samhita again into four and taught it to four of his disciples, Bodhi, Adimadhava, Yajfiavalkya and Paras ara. Indrapramati without splitting his sariihita taught it to his renowned son, Mandukeya. The branch of Indrapramati thus went down into circulation through the disciples of Mandukeya and the disciples of the disciples and so on. Vedamitra of kkalya gotra, one sage in the line of the disciples of Mandukeya, split the sarirhita into five, and taught it to Mudgala, Gomukha, Vatsya, Saliya and Sar1ra. Sakapurna a colleague of Vedamitra divided it into three and added a division to it by composing a Nirukta of his own. He taught them to Vaitalika, Balaka and Kraufica. This was how the Indrapramati Sa:nhita produced branches and sub-branches. Baskala divided his sarhhita into another set of three and taught it to Kalayani, Gargya, and Kathajava. The sages mentioned above are the ones who spread Rgveda in the world.


3) Saints of Yaajurveda. Vaisampayana, disciple of Veda Vyasa, made twentyseven divisions of Yajurveda and taught them to his disciples. Among those disciples was Yajfiavalkya, son of Brahmarata. The branch Taittiriya originated from Yajfiavalkya.


4) The Taittiriya branch. Once all the sages learned in the Vedas made a decision. He who does not attend the Brahmasamaja meeting held at the mountain of Mahameru will be tainted with the sin of Brahmahatya (murder of a brahmin). At onetime Vaigampayana was not able to attend and so was charged with the sin of Brahmahatya. He called his disciples to his ,side and told them that they should observe a Vrata /to absolve Vaisampayana of his sin. Then one of his disciples, Yajnavalkya, stood up and said that he would observe the vrata alone and that there was no need of anybody else in that matter. When asked why he said so he replied that none of the colleagues of his was so brilliant and majestic as he was. Vaisampayana did not like this arrogance of Yajnavalkya and so angrily commanded Yajfiavalkya to give back all that had been taught to him by Vaisampayana. Obeying orders Yajfiavalkya vorrrited all the yajus and went away from the place. The other sages taking the form of the bird, Tittiri, accepted the vomited yajus. Therefore that branch of the Veda got the name of Taittiriya and those sages were known as the Taittiriyas.


5) Aydtayama(s). On his leaving Vaisampayana Yajfiavalkya put into operation a new set of Yajus called Ayatayama unknown even to Vaisampayana. This was how it happened. Yajfiavalkya after leaving the Brahmasamaja went and did penance to propitiate the Sun-god. The Sun appeared before him in the form of a horse. Yajfiavalkya then requested him to grant him new yajus unknown even to Vaisampayana.


The Sun then remaining in the shape of the horse (Vaji) itself imparted to him instructions on a new set of Yajus called Ayatayama which were not known to anybody else, even to Vaisampayana. Those who studied it were called Vajis. There are fifteen branches of the Vajis, Kannu being one of them. All were put into operation by Yajfiavalkya.


6) The Sannyasins of Samaveda. Vedavyasa taught Samaveda to Jaimini. Jaimini had a son, Sumantu, and h e in turn had a son named Sutva. Sumantu and Sutva were very intelligent and they studied one branch each of the Vedas. Sutva had a son, Sukarma, and he divided Samavedasariihita into a thousand branches. Sukarma had two discipl°s: Hiratiyanabha and Pauspifiji, and both of them studied all the thousand divisions of the Samaveda. The five hundred disciples of Hiranyanabha who came from the north and studied Samaveda were called Udicya Samagas (those come from the north). Another five hundred came from the east and studied Samavedasarhhita from Hiranyanabha and they were called Pracya samagas. (Hiranyanabha is known as Kausalya also.) Pauspifiji had four disciples


Logaksi, Kauthumi, Kaksivan and Lafigali. These four and their disciples split their sarirhitas and increased them. Krti, one of the disciples of Hiranyanabha, taught his disciples twentyfour sarhhitas. They also split them into many more and . made the Samaveda bigger.


7) The saints of Atharvaveda. Vyasa taught Atharvaveda to Sumantu. Sage Sumantu taught it to his disciple Kabandha first. Kabandha split it into two and gave. one each to his disciples: Devadarsa and Pathya. Deva had four disciples: MedhaBrahmabali, Santakayani and Pippalada. Pathya had three: Jabali, Kumuda and Saunaka. All these made sarirhitas. Saunaka split his saiiihita into two and taught one to Badru and another to Saindhava. Munjikega learnt it from Saindhava. He split it into two first and then again into three. The five ~arhhitas of Mufijikega namely, Naksatrakalpa, Vedakalpa, Sarhhitakalpa, Angirasakalpa and ~antikalpa are the most important divisions of the Atharvaveda. The Naksatrakalpa contains methods of worshipping Naksatras; the Vedakalpa contains the rites of the Rtvik Brahma, and the Sarirhitakalpa contains the science of the care of horses and elephants.


8) Puranas. Vyasa compiled a Purana sarhhita using speeches, appendices, poems and Kalpanirnayas and taught it to Romaharsana alias Suta. Suta had six disciples named Sumati, Agnivarcas, Mitrayus, Sarirsapayana, Akrtavrana, and Savarni. Akrtavrana, Sa.varni and ~arhsapayana born of Kasyapagotra have themselves made Puranasarhhitas. There is another sarnhita composed by Romaharsana based on the sarhhitas made by the above three.


Visnu Purana is based on the latter four sarnhitas. There are eighteen Puranas, namely, Agneya, Brahma, Brahman4a, Brahmavaivarta, Bhagavata, Bhavisya, Garuda, Kurma, Lifiga, Markandeya, Matsya, Naradiya, Padma, Siva, Skanda, Vamana, Varaha and Visnu. There are eighteen sub Puranas also. In all these are described the creation, the deluge, the dynasties of the devas, history of kingly dynasties, changes of generations etc. (Athsa 3, Visnu Purana; 12th Skandha, Bhagavata) ,


GULMA. See under Aksauhini.


GULMAKA. The uncle of Gunadhya. Gunadhya is the author of the famous book `Brhatkatha'. In the city of Supratisthita there was a brahmin named Somasarma who had three children, namely, Vatsa, Gulmaka and grutartha. Gunadhya was the son of grutartha (Tarafrga 6, Kathapithalambaka, Kathasaritsagara).