Markandeya Puranam

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KRAUSTUKI said: – O revered one, by thee has Bharata been duly described to me; including the lakes, the mountains, the provinces as well as those that inhabit them. (1) But I am exceedingly eager to hear of the position of Hari who has been described by thee as living in Bharata as a tortoise. (2) How that bright one, the oppressor of the Asura – i.e. Bishnu, exist in the form of tortoise, and from that how are peoples’ merits and demerit revealed, tell me all that in detail, from beginning to end. (3)

Markandeya said: – The Possessor of the six qualities and powers called Bhagas, the bright one, of the form of tortoise, exists with his face towards the east, holding this Bharata, divided into nine parts. (4) On all sides of him are stationed, in nine quarters, nine stars; and the countries that are ruled by them, hear of them, O most superior among twice born persons, with attention from me, in due manner. (5) Vedamantra, Bimandabya, Shalmanipa, Shaka, Ujjihana, likewise Batsa, Ghosha, Sankya, similarly Khasha, Saraswata, Matsya, Shurasena with Mathura, Dharmaranya, Jyotishika, Gauragriba, Gudashmaka, Udbehaka with Panchala, Sanketa, Kankamaruta, Kalakoti with Pashanda, and the province of the inhabitants of Paripatra, Kapingala, Kururbahya and similarly Udumbara, and Gijabhaya these are situate in the middle of the tortoise that live in the water. (6-9) And the three stars Kirtika, Rohin, and Saumya, are the workers of good and evil among these inhabitants of the central portion (of the tortoise). (10) Brishadhvaja, Anjana, Jambuakhya, Manabachala, Shupakarna, Byaghramukha, Kharmaka, Karbatashana, and likewise, Chandreswara, Khasha, Magadha, Giri, Mithila, Pundra, Badanadantura, Pragjyotisha with Lohita, Samudra, Purushadaka, Purnatkati, Bhadragour, likewise Oh thou twice-born one, Udayagiri, Kashaya, Mekhala, Mushta, Tamralipta, Ekapadapa, Bardhamana, Koshala, are all situate in the mouth of the tortoise. (11-14) And the three stars, Raudra, Punarbashu and Pushya are stationed at this mouth. Oh Kraushtuku, hear me, I shall tell you of the countries that lie on the south feet of the tortoise. Kalinga, Banga, Jatharu, Koshala, Mrishika likewise, Chedi, Urdhakarna, and the inhabitants of Matsya &c., on the Vindyarange, the people of Bidbarbha, Narikela, Dharmadwipa, similarly Alika, Byaghragriba, Mahagriba, of Tripura, and Shmasrudhari, of Kiskinda, Hemkuta, Nishadha and of Katakasthala, Dasharna, Harika and the naked people of Bishada, and Kakula and Alaka and similarly of Panashabara exist in the south east foot of the tortoise. Ashlesha, likewise the star called the Pitri, as well as the First Falguni, these three exist holding on to the southeastern foot. Lanka, Kalajina, Shaulika, and likewise the people of Nikata, and those that live in the mountains Mohendra, Malaya, and Durdara, and these that live in the forest Karkotaka, and the people of Bhrigukacca with those of Konkan, all these and similarly the people of Abhira and those living on the banks of the river Benwa, the people of Abanti, Dasapara, and likewise the inhabitants of Akani, the Maharattas with the people of Karnata, Gonarda, and Chitrakuta, Chola and those of Kolagiri, Kraunchadwipa and of the mounts Shankha, Sukti and Baiduryya, and similarly the people of Barichara, and of Kol and Charmapatta, the people of Gandhavahya, and Para and those that inhabit the islands Krishna; those people that inhabit the mountains Sarya and Kumada and also those of Aukhavana, with those of Pishika, and those that belong to Karmanayaka, those of southern Kurusha, and those of the hermitage of Rishika, those of Rishabha, and of Singhala (Ceylon) and the inhabitants of Kanchi and of Tilanga, Kunjara and those people that inhabit Darikaccha, and Tamraparni likewise Kukshi, these all live on the southern portion of the tortoise. (15-28) The Uttara Falguni, Hasta and Chitra, O thou twice-born one, these three stars reside in the southern belly of the tortoise. Similarly the people of Bapyapada and Kamboja, of Palhaba, and likewise of Badavamukha as those of Sindh, and

Sauvira with the people of Anarta and Banitamukha. The people of Drabana, those of Sargiga, those of Sudra, and the savage people of Kranapreyadha, the Kiratas, the Paradas, those of Pandru likewise those of Parashaba and Kala, those of Dhurtaka and Hemagiri, those of Sindh, Kalaka, and Raivata, and those of Surastra, and Darada, and Dravida and of Maharnava, these habitations are situate on the other one of the two southern feet of the tortoise. The stars Sati, Bishakha, and Mactin, these three (are the workers of their good and evil). (29-33) Manimegha, Kshuradri, Khanjana and likewise Astagiri, the western Haihaya, Santika Biprashasthaka, Konkan, Panchanadaka, Baman and likewise Abara, Taraksbara, Angataka, Sarkar, Shabnabeshmaka, Guruswara, Falgunaka Benumabi – those inhabiting these places, likewise those that live in Falguluka, Ghora, Gurubha, and Kala and those of Ekekshana, Bajikesha, Dergagriba, with those of Chuleka, and Aswakesha, all these people live in the tail of the tortoise. Aindra, Mula and likewise Ashada, these are the three stars (that rule over their destinies). The people of Mandabya, and Chandakhara, and Ashmaka, and Lalana, and Kunyata, and similarly those of Ladaha and Stribahya, and Balika and Nrisimha, and Benumati and others likewise of Balabasta and similarly those of Dharmabadha, and Aluka, and the people that live in Urukarma, these people live on the side of the left feet of the tortoise; where the three stars Ashada, Sraban and Ghanishta are stationed. Kailash, Himaban and Dhanushman, and likewise Basuman, and the people of Krauncha, and of Kurubaka, and Kshudrabina and Rasalaya, with those of Kaikeya, and Bhogaprasta, with those of Yamana and Antardwipa, Trigartta, Agnija with the inhabitants of Ardana, similarly the people of Ashwamukha, Prapta and of Chibida who wear long hairs, those of Dasaraka and Batadhana, and Shabadhana; those of Pushkala, and the inferior Kairata similarly those that live in Takshashila; those of Ambala, Malaba, Madra, Benuka, with those of Badantika, those of Pingala, Manakalapa, Hana, and Kuhalaka, those of Mandabya, and Bhutiyubaka, Saptaka and Hemataraka; those of Yoshamati with those of Gandhara with those whose refuge is Svarasagara, those of Yaudeya and Dasameya and Rajanya and those of Shyamaka, as well as those of Kshemadhurta, – all these live in the left belly of the tortoise. (34-47) Here the star is Baruna, likewise the two Praustapada. The kingdom of the Kinnaras, Pashupala, with that of Kichaka, and that of Kashmir, and likewise the people of Abhisara and those of Dabada and of Angana, and those of Kulata and of Banarashtra, and those of Saurista and Brahmapura and similarly those of Banabahya those of Kirata, and Kakshikananda, and the people of Palhaba and Lolana and those of Darbada, and of Maraka, and of Kurata and of Anadaraka, and of Ekapada and those of Khasha, and Ghosha who are as faulters as the people of heaven – similarly those of Hinga with the Yabasas, and those of Chiraprabarana, those that live in Triantra and those of Puru; and the Gandharbas, oh most excellent among twice-born persons, these live on the north-eastern foot of the tortoise. Revatis, Ashvidaivatya and Yama, these are the three stars of this region. (48-53) In the regions mentioned by me the stars belonging to them cause, good and evil, O thou excellent Muni. In these countries, O thou twice-born one, these stars in the order related by me cause pain to them. While they grow and gain all sorts of good when the stars are in their proper places. (54-55) The particular planet which is the lord of the particular star ruling over a country, of that country, O thou superior among Munis, both fear and happiness are caused by that planet. (56) In each country, O thou most excellent one among twice-born persons, the evil or good, befall men equally, from these stars and planets. (57) When the natal stars of creatures are inauspicious, the evil that befalls them is slight, and similarly by the planets also they are subjected to slight pain. (58) Similarly when the star is auspicious by the sages who know all these things, it is said, that by planets in evil stations but little harm is caused to men. (59) When the evil sight of the planets falls on the effects of the virtuous men, or on their cattle, or on their servants, or on their friends, or on their sons, or on their wives or their houses there is fear of evil. (60) When the sight of the evil planet falls on one’s own self, there is cause of great fear to men of little merit or those that are given to sin, while there is no cause of fear to the sinless. (61) All the good and evil arising from either the locality or the quarter in which people live, or from their kings or from their own selves, or from the operation of the stars and the planets, – all these men suffer or enjoy. (62) Their mutual safety is caused by stars that are not inauspicious, and by them when they are inauspicious is caused loss of good, O thou prince among Brahmans! (63) The position of stars in the

particular parts of the tortoise as related by me, is common to all the countries situate in those parts, and so is also the evil or good caused by them. (64) Therefore knowing the presiding stars of the country as also the unfavourable influence of one’s own (natal) stars, the wise and the good shall propitiate them according to lokabada. (65) The desires, of the gods and Datyas that fall on the earth from the sky, are called lokabada. (66) The learned shall duly perform those propitiatory rites nor give up the lokabada of those men who perform these; the coming in of evil is obstructed, and the good arises and evil is utterly destroyed, O most excellent among twice-born persons; while of those who do not observe these, they (the stars) destroy the senses, and also the household properties, &c. Therefore are the wise given to the performance of propitiatory rites, and are devoted to traditions similarly; the propitiatory rites should be performed and the lokabada observed whenever the stars are unpropitious. (67-69) Then the wise do not work harm, do not fast, perform auspicious works, and pay homage to places of sacrifice, and perform japa and homa, and likewise acts of charity, and bathing and give up anger and other passions, and ill will towards all creatures, and practise good will towards them, avoid bad words, and similarly harsh and unpleasant words, and the worship of the stars; these should men do when suffering from evil stars. In this way, O thou most excellent Brahman, all evils are fully remedied in men who thus control and discipline themselves. The lord, the possessor of the six high qualities, the Bhagas, the spirit who is unapproachable by thought, Narayana, who exists as tortoise in Bharata, and in whom all is established, and where the gods are also established, – has all been described by me. (70-74) In this (tortoise) the gods exist holding on each to a star. There in the middle exist the carrier of sacrificial offerings – the god Agni, and the earth, and, O thou twice born one, the moon and three stars (of the signs of the zodiac) the lamb &c – exist in its middle, and the pairs &c – exist in the mouth of the tortoise, while the crab and the lion exist in the south-eastern foot; the lion, the maiden, and the balance, these three exist in the belly; the balance and the scorpion exist on the southeastern foot; the scorpion exists on the back with the archer; the archer and the three stars commencing with the horse, exist on the north¬eastern foot, while the tortoise and the fish, O thou most superior among the twice born persons, similarly exist in the northern belly of this (tortoise), while the fish and the lamb exist on the north-eastern foot. (75-78) In this way are the different regions of the earth and in those regions their respective stars, and in those stars their respective signs of the zodiac, and in those signs their respective planets stationed. Therefore the evils arising from the stars and the planets are said to be Deshapida or evils pertaining to particular regions. And on these evils arising the injunction is that people shall bathe and perform hom and acts of charity. That foot of Vishnu which exists among the planets is Brahma, called even as the Narayana; he is unthinkable and is the cause and lord of the world. (79-81)