Markandeya Puranam

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THE SON said: – Thereupon after a long time Brahma’s son the divine Atri cast his look upon his own wife Anusua; (1) bathed after her course having all her limbs purified and an excellent form worthy of being coveted by all. Having his mind stricken with desire that ascetic thought in his mind of that one of a blameless person. (2) Engrossed by her thought he discharged his vital fluid and the powerful wind carried it upwards and indirectly. (3) Falling on all sides that white fluid, with Brahma energy, covered the ten cardinal quarters in the shape of the moon.

(4) The moon, the stay of the life of all creatures, was born as the mind begotten son of the patriarch Atri. (5) Well-pleased the high-souled Vishnu was born from his own body as the best of the twice-born, Dattatreya permeated by the quality of goodness. (6) Incarnating himself Vishnu was born as the second son of Atri known under the name of Dattatreya who sucked the breast of Anusuya. (7) Getting angry he got out of his mother’s womb within a week. Seeing the haughty, perverse and guilty king of Haihayas and getting angry, enraged as he was before with the vexation and trouble of living in the womb, he made up his mind for killing that Haihaya. (8-9) Then was born Durvasa, a portion of Rudra impregnated with the quality of darkness. Thus Brahma, Vishnu, and Siva were born as her three sons. (10) By virtue of the boon conferred upon her by the celestials Brahma was born at the moon, Vishnu as Dattatreya and Sankara as Durvasa. (11) The patriarch Soma (moon), nursing with his own cool rays plants, herbs and men, always resides in the firmament (heaven). (12) Dattatreya, a portion of Vishnu, protects the creatures by destroying the wicked demons and favouring the good people. (13) Assuming a body (impregnated by the energy of Rudra) the divine unborn Durvasa, of dreadful looks, thoughts and words, burns down those who insult him. (14) The Patriarch Brahma became born in the family of Atri as Soma (the moon). Hari, born as Dattatreya and engaged in Yoga, began to enjoy the worldly objects. (15) Forsaking his father and mother and resorting to the most excellent vow, Unmatha or madness he wandered over the earth. (16) The ascetic Dattatreya was always encircled by the sons of ascetics; but desiring for disassociation that lord lived sunk in a lake for a long time. (17) Still those boys living on the banks of the lake did not leave the noble ascetic of an extremely handsome look. (18) And even on the completion of a hundred celestial years the sons of the ascetics did not leave the bank of the lake out of love for him. (19) Thereupon arose from the water the ascetic taking with him an auspicious lady, clad in a celestial raiment, and gifted with beautiful breast and hips, (20) thinking “the sons of ascetics will leave me on seeing me in the company of a woman and then I shall live disassociated.” (21) Still the boys did not leave the ascetic and then he began to drink wine in the company of the woman. (22) But even then those sons of the ascetics did not leave him although engaged in drinking wine with his wife. Although he was sullied by the enjoyment of carnal pleasure, singing, music and the company of a woman, and even by drinking wine still he was regarded (by them) as one having a great soul. (22-23) Nor did that great ascetic commit any sin by drinking wine like air blowing in the house of a Chandala. (24) Drinking wine, that one conversant with Yoga,

practised austerities in the company of his wife. That master of Yogis was worthy of being contemplated by them desirous of emancipation. (25)