> Penances undertaken in Bharatavarsha
Penances undertaken in Bharatavarsha
From Valmiki Ramayana:
From Brahma Purana:
- Penance of Sri Vishnu at Siddhashrama
- Penance of sage Kashyapa at Siddhashrama
- Penance of king Bhagiratha at Gokarna
- Penance of sage Vishwamitra for becoming Brahmarshi
From Padma Purana:
- Penance of sage Gautama at Kailasha
From Skanda Purana: Badrikashrama Mahatmya:
- Penance of Devas at Pushkara
From Shiva Purana:
- Penance of Agni deva at Badarikashrama
- Penance of sage Narada at Badarikashrama
- Penance of sage Markandeya at Badarikashrama
- Penance of Garuda at Badarikashrama
From Srimad Bhagavatam:
- Penance of Sandhya at Chandrabhaga Mountain
- Penance of Devi Sati
- Penance of Devi Parvati at Gauri Shikhara Mountain
- Penance of Dhruva at Madhuvana
Penances from Valmiki Ramayana:
1. Penance of Sri Vishnu at Siddhashrama: Descent of Vamana Avatara
Valmiki Ramayana (Bala Kanda 29): Penance of Sri Vishnu: Sri Rama visited Siddhashrama while travelling with sage Vishwamitra and enquired about the hermitage. Sage Vishwamitra told that it was the hermitage of Vamana avatara of Sri Vishnu. Sri Vishnu performed tapas there for hundreds of yugas (before assuming the form of Vamana Avatara).
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2. Penance of sage Kashyapa at Siddhashrama: Getting Vamana Avatara as son
Valmiki Ramayana (Bala Kanda 29): Penance of Kashyapa and Aditi: Sri Rama visited Siddhashrama while travelling with sage Vishwamitra and enquired about the hermitage. Sage Vishwamitra told that it was the hermitage of Vamana avatara of Sri Vishnu. Sage Kashyapa and Devi Aditi performed penance there for thousand divine years and eulogized Sri Vishnu as: Tapomaya (filled with tapas), Taporashi (aggregate of all tapas), Tapomurti (embodiment of tapas) and Tapatmaka (whose atma is tapas). Sage Kashyapa also said that he was seeing the whole universe within the divine body of Vishnu Who is without beginning and cannot be defined.
Granting of Boon: Sri Vishnu was pleased and told sage Kashyapa to ask for a boon. Sage Kashyapa asked the boon that He (Vishnu) be born as their son and help the devas to overcome the asuras. Sri Vishnu bestowed the boon and was born as their son Vamana.
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3. Penance of king Bhagiratha at Gokarna: Descent of river Ganga
Valmiki Ramayana (Bala Kanda 35): Sri Rama hearing about descent of Ganga: While Sri Rama was going from Siddhashrama to Mithila with sage Vishwamitra and other sages, He camped at the bank of river Ganga and heard the story of the descent of river Ganga from Vishwamitra. Covering many earlier incidents, sage Vishwamitra finally came to the penance of king Bhagiratha.
Valmiki Ramayana (Bala Kanda 42): Tapas of Bhagiratha for thousands of years and pleasing Brahma: Delegating the kingdom to ministers, king Bhagiratha engaged in tapas at Gokarna. Raising his hands, sitting amidst the five fires, taking food only once a month, and with controlled senses, he practised severe tapas for thousands of years. Then Bhagavan Brahma became pleased and arrived there with the devas to give boon. Knowing about the wish of Bhagiratha to bring Ganga to earth, Brahma told him that Hara (Shiva) needs to be involved here as He is the only one capable of bearing the descent of Ganga, which the earth cannot endure.
Valmiki Ramayana (Bala Kanda 43): Tapas of Bhagiratha on Shiva to bear Ganga: Then Bhagiratha performed tapas on Lord Shiva for one year. Shiva was pleased and told Bhagiratha that he will bear Ganga on his head during her descent.
Descent of Ganga on the head of Shiva and getting locked: Then Ganga assuming a huge form and unbearable speed descended on the auspicious head of Shiva. Devi Ganga thought that taking Shankara with her streams, she will enter the patala. Coming to know about her egotism, Shiva became angry and restrained Ganga on his head. Ganga tried hard to free herself but was not able to do so. She went round and round the matted hairs of Shiva for many years.
Penance of Bhagiratha on Lord Shiva to free Ganga: Not seeing Ganga descending from the matted hairs of Shiva, Bhagiratha again sat down for performing austere penance. Shiva became pleased and released Ganga from his head.
Seven streams of Ganga emerging: Shiva released Ganga on Bindu Sarovar. Seven streams emerged from her. Hladini, Pavani and Nalini are eastward flowing Ganges. Sucakshu, Sita and Sindhu are westward flowing Gangas, and the seventh stream followed Bhagiratha who was sitting on a divine chariot.
Jahnu muni drinking Ganga and later releasing her: While following Bhagiratha, Ganga inundated the yagya sthala of Jahnu muni, who became angry and drank off all the waters of Ganga. The devas were astounded and pleaded the muni to release Ganga considering her as his daughter. The muni was pleased and released Ganga from his ears. Therefore Ganga was considered as the daughter of Jahnu muni and came to be known as Jahnavi.
Bhagiratha leading Ganga to nether world and liberating ancestors: Thereafter king Bhagiratha lead Ganga to ocean and then to the nether world where the ashes of his ancestors were lying. Ganga washed away the ashes with her pure water and liberated the sixty thousand ancestors of king Bhagiratha from their curse.
Valmiki Ramayana (Bala Kanda 44): Ganga came to be known as Bhagirathi: Lord Brahma was pleased with Bhagiratha and told that due to his acts Ganga will become renowned in the world as Bhagirathi.
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4. Penance of sage Vishwamitra: Becoming Brahmarshi
Valmiki Ramayana (Bala Kanda 64): Sri Rama hearing about the penance of Vishwamitra: Sri Rama heard the story of sage Vishwamitra from sage Shatananda at Mithila. After telling about various incidents in the life of Vishwamitra, sage Shatananda told about the great penance of Vishwamitra.
Vishwamitra resolving: Sage Vishwamitra resolved: Till I attain Brahmanhood through my tapas, I will continue my tapas for endless years without breathing and without food. Neither will my body decay while performing tapas.
Valmiki Ramayana (Bala Kanda 65): Tapas of Vishwamitra for thousand years: Then Vishwamitra leaving the Himalayas went to the eastern direction and performed severe tapas. Remaining silent for thousand years he performed his unparallel vow which is extremely difficult. The mahamuni became like wood. He was shaken by many barriers but still anger did not enter his heart.
Tapas of Vishwamitra for another thousand years: Indra came to test him. Vishwamitra continued his tapas for another thousand years without breathing. Thereafter due to controlled breath, fumes started to emit from his head. The three worlds became agitated by that heat. The devas and other celestial beings went to pitamaha Brahma requesting him to stop the penance of Vishwamitra by giving sought after boon.
Valmiki Ramayana (Bala Kanda 66): Vishwamitra attains Brahmanhood: Pitamaha Brahma appeared before Vishwamitra with the devas and bestowed Brahmanhood on him along with long life and marud ganas. Vishwamitra said: If I have indeed attained Brahmanhood and long life, let the Omkara, Vasatkara and Vedas give boon (of knowledge) to me, and let Vashistha, the best one in the knowledge in Vedas, also acknowledge my Brahmanhood. Then invoked by the devas, Vashistha appeared and making friendship with Vishwamitra said: "You are a Brahmarshi".
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Penances from Brahma Purana:
1. Penance of sage Gautama at mount Kailasha: Descent of river Gautami Ganga (Godavari)
Brahma Purana (Gautami Mahatmya ch 4 - 6): Introduction: When Lord Shiva was holding Ganga as His beloved on His matted hair, Devi Uma wanted the Lord to forsake Ganga. Vinayaka helped Her for the welfare of the entire world to bring Ganga to earth. By a trick and with a fake cow as an instrument, Vinayaka made sage Gautama perform penance to bring Ganga down to Earth. Sage Gautama came to know this through his yogic vision but was happy to perform this task for the welfare of the world.
Eulogizing Shiva: Sage Gautamna went to mount Kailasha and eulogized the various forms of Lord Shiva through hymns.
- Sage Gautama eulogized the Lord Who assumes eight cosmic bodies accompanied by Uma.
- Sage Gautama eulogized the Lord Who assumes the body of the Earth.
- Sage Gautama eulogized the Lord Who assumes the form of Waters.
- Sage Gautama eulogized the Lord Who assumes the form of Sun, Moon and Fire.
- Sage Gautama eulogized the Lord Who assumes the form of Vayu.
- Sage Gautama eulogized the Lord with ethereal body which assumes the form of Word.
- Sage Gautama eulogized the Lord Who assumes the form of Sacrifice.
Granting Boon: As sage Gautama eulogized the Lord, Lord Shiva appeared accompanied by Devi Uma, Ganesha and retinue. He gave the boon of river Ganga to sage Gautama. Sage Gautama lead the Ganga to the Brahmagiri Hills surrounded by the devas.
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Penances from Padma Purana:
1. Penance of Devas at Pushkara: Getting darshan of Brahma
Padma Purana (Shristi Kanda 15): Brahma's sacrifice: Once Lord Brahma decided to perform a sacrifice and was searching for a suitable place. He came down to earth and entered a forest, which later came to be known as Pushkara.
Description of the forest: The forest was adorned with many trees, creepers and flowers. It was filled with the sound of birds and fragrant with abundant flowers. The six seasons delighted the sense of smell and sight. The wind took fragrance from the flowers and perfumed the sky, earth and the quarters. There were many trees and creepers like Naga, Karnikara, Sinduvara, Kunda, Sarja, Arjuna, Atimukta, Sala, Ashoka, Panasa, Sarala, Malati, Kadamba, Sirisa etc. The trees were full of abundant flowers and appeared like a spring festival. The cuckoos and parrots sang and the peacocks danced. The charming forest appeared like the garden of Indra.
Trees worshipping Brahma: Lord Brahma saw the forest with pleasing eyes. Seeing the Lord, the trees poured their flowers with devotion.
Brahma's boon: Accepting the flowers offered by the trees, Lord Brahma told them to ask for a boon. The trees requested the Lord to stay with them in the forest. Brahma granted the boon making that the best of sacred places. He favoured the trees that they will always be full of flowers and fruits and remain youthful.
Brahma throwing lotus: Lord Brahma remained there for thousand years. Thereafter, one day He threw a lotus on the ground. With a great sound it made the earth tremble and also agitated the oceans and the three worlds. The celestial beings were afraid and went to the abode of Lord Brahma. Not finding the Lord, they went to the abode of Lord Vishnu to know the cause of that sound. Lord Vishnu told them the cause and together they went to the Pushkara forest. But the gods could not see Lord Brahma in the forest. Vayu told the gods that they need to perform penance with great devotion to see Lord Brahma.
The penance of the gods: The gods took due initiation from guru Brihaspati and performed penance at Pushkara. They took bath in the holy lake, observed silence and restrained their senses. By the meditation their minds became absolutely pure.
Darshan of Lord Brahma: When the minds of the gods became absolutely pure by meditation, Lord Brahma became visible to them. The gods eulogized the Lord and asked the reason of that great sound and agitation when He threw the lotus. Lord Brahma told them that by throwing the lotus, he destroyed the demon Vajranabha for the welfare of the gods.
The name Pushkara: Lord Brahma told the gods that since He dropped the lotus there, therefore the place will be known as Pushkara. Lord Brahma then founded a sacred place there in the north of Chandranadi and river Saraswati was flowing by its east. The Pushkara Kshetra is the altar of the sacrifice made by Lord Brahma.
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Penances from Skanda Purana - Badrikashrama Mahatmya:
1. Penance of Agni deva at Badarikashrama: Agnitirtha
Skanda Purana (Badarikashrama Mahatmya ch 2): Penance of Agni deva at Badarikashrama (Agnitirtha): Once Agni deva wanted to get rid of his sins due to his omnivorousness. He consulted an assembly of great sages. Sage Vyasa told Agni deva to go to Badari. Agni deva went to mount Gandhamadana and arrived at Badari. After taking bath in the holy waters of Ganga, he went to the hermitage of Narayana and eulogized the Lord. Lord Narayana was pleased and told Agni deva to choose a boon. Agni asked about a way of redemption due to his sin of omnivorousness. Lord Narayana said that seeing this holy spot his sins will get destroyed and by His grace he will not incur any sin. Thereafter Agni deva made his abode there (at Agnitirtha).
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2. Penance of sage Narada at Badarikashrama: Naradi shila
Skanda Purana (Badarikashrama Mahatmya ch 2): Penance of sage Narada at Badarikashrama (Naradi shila): Once sage Narada performed a severe penance at Badari to get the vision of Lord Vishnu. He stood on a rock taking only air and products of trees for sixty thousand years. Lord Vishnu initially came in the form of a brahmana and later revealed His true form to sage Narada. Narada eulogized the Lord with various hymns. The Lord told Narada to ask for a boon. Narada asked for unflinching devotion to His lotus feet and His presence in the rock where he performed penance. The Lord granted the boon and thus was Narada tirtha created.
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3. Penance of sage Markandeya at Badarikashrama: Markandeyi shila
Skanda Purana (Badarikashrama Mahatmya ch 2): Penance of sage Markandeya at Badarikashrama (Markandeyi shila): During Tretayuga, sage Markandeya knowing himself to be short-lived worshipped Lord Vishnu. He repeated the twelve-syllabled mantra of the Lord. He visited various pilgrimages and met sage Narada at Mathura. Narada advised him to go to Badari where Hari is perpetually present. Markandeya went to Badari and after taking bath in the holy river, sat on a rock and repeated the eight-syllabled mantra of the Lord. Within three days, Lord Janardhana appeared in His true form holding conch, discus, club and lotus. Markandeya was charged with devotion and he eulogized the Lord. He invoked the grace of the Lord to save him from the miseries of the samsara. The Lord became pleased and told Markandeya to choose a boon. Markandeya prayed to the Lord to grant him steady devotion and make His abode in the rock where he performed his worship. The Lord granted the boon.
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4. Penance of Garuda at Badarikashrama: Garudi shila
Skanda Purana (Badarikashrama Mahatmya ch 2): Penance of Garuda at Badarikashrama (Garudi shila): Garuda wanted to become the vehicle of Lord Vishnu. He performed penance on mount Gandhamadana on the southern side of Badari. Taking only fruits, roots and water, he stood on only one foot and performed japa for thirty thousand years. The Lord appeared to him in His true form but Garuda could not hear His voice due to absorption in meditation. Then the Lord blew His conch, but still Garuda was not awakened from his meditation. Finally the Lord entered through his breath and made his mind extroverted. Seeing the Lord, there was horripilation on his body due to devotion. Garuda eulogized the Lord with various hymns. Then Garuda invoked Ganga and washed the feet of the Lord. The Lord was pleased and told Garuda to ask for a boon. Garuda asked for great strength and the boon to become His vehicle. He also asked the Lord to make the rock where he performed penance to be known after his name. The Lord granted the boon and told him to go to Badari. By taking holy bath there and observing fast for three days with purity it is easy to get His vision. Thereafter Garuda went to Badari and after performing the holy rites saw the Lord stationed at Narada tirtha.
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Penances from Shiva Purana:
1. Penance of Sandhya at Chandrabhaga mountain: Birth as Devi Arundhati
Shiva Purana (Rudra Samhita - Sati Khanda 5): Introduction: Sandhya was the daughter of Lord Brahma born from his mind. She was looked at with lustful eyes by Brahma and also by other sages due to the influence of Kamadeva. She inturn also had passionate feelings. Therefore she decided to give up her body by tapas and also establish a tradition that no new born will have lustful feelings.
Going to Chandrabhaga mountain and river: Sandhya went to Chandrabhaga mountain for performing penance. It was also the origin of river Chandrabhaga and on the bank of river Chandrabhaga.
Vashistha instructing: To make her penance successful, Lord Brahma told sage Vashistha to go to the Chandrabhaga mountain and instruct her in tapas. Sage Vashistha went to her taking the form of a brahmachari luminous with tapas and enquired about her purpose. She revealed her purpose and also sought instructions from the brahmachari for performing tapas. The brahmachari instructed her to meditate on Lord Shiva and repeat the mantra "Om Namah Shankaraya Om". He also told her to observe silence and take bath while worshipping Hara. During the first and second sasthakalas she should only take water. During the third sasthakala she should observe complete fast.
The tapas: Receiving the instructions from the brahmachari, Sandhya started performing tapas on the bank of Brihallohita lake. She meditated on Lord Shiva and recited the mantra given to her. In this way four yugas elapsed.
Shiva giving darshan: After four yugas have elapsed in tapas, Lord Shiva displayed His form to her both from within as well as outside on the sky. Sandhya became nervous thinking about how to pray to Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva entered her heart and bestowed divine knowledge, divine speech and divine vision. Becoming endowed with divine knowledge Sandhya eulogized Lord Shiva.
Shiva granting boon: Hearing her eulogy, Shiva became pleased and told her to ask for a boon. Sandhya asked the first boon that no living being should have lustful feelings immediately after birth. She asked the second boon that no woman in the three worlds should match her. She asked the third boon that none of her creations should be lustful. If any person (apart from her husband) looked at her with lust, he will go towards his own downfall and become an eunuch. Shiva granted these boons and also told her that her husband would be a great ascetic and will live with her for three kalpas.
Giving up her body: Sandhya decided to give up her present body in tapas. For this Lord Shiva told her to go to the place on the bank of river Chandrabhaga where sage Medhatithi was performing the great Jyotistoma yagya spanning twelve years, and then enter into the fire of the yagya. Shiva told her that she will be invisible while entering the fire. Thereafter she will be born as the daughter of sage Medhatithi. While entering the fire she should remember the boons sought by her. As per the instruction of Lord Shiva Sandhya gave up her body by entering into the fire of yagya. While entering she sought the brahmachari (sage Vashitha in that form) as her husband.
Birth as daughter of Medhatithi: At the end of the yagya, sage Medhatithi got a girl from within the fire whose complexion was like molten gold. Sage Medhatithi delightfully took up the girl and gave her the name Arundhati. The girl started growing up as the daughter of sage Medhatithi at Tapasaranya on the bank of river Chandrabhaga.
Marriage with sage Vashistha: When she grew up, Lord Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva married her to sage Vashistha. A huge marriage ceremony was held. From the hands of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesha, the water that was dropped formed seven rivers like Shipra etc.
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2. Penance of Devi Sati: Getting Shiva as husband
Shiva Purana (Rudra Samhita - Sati Khanda 15): Devi Sati performing Nanda Vrata: Devi Sati performed Nanda Vrata to get Lord Shiva as her husband. She worshipped Lord Shiva with various food items and flowers at home with great devotion and concentrated mind on the following days:
- On Ashwina on the Nanda Tithi
- On Kartika Chaturdasi
- On Margashirsha Ashtami
- On Pausha Shukla Saptami
- On Magha Poornima
- On Chaitra Shukla Chaturdasi
- On Magha Shukla Tritiya
- On Jyestha Poornima
- On Ashadha Shukla Chaturdasi
- On Shravana Ashtami and Chaturdasi
- On Bhadra Krishna Trayodashi
Shiva bestowing boon: After completion of Her Vrata, Brahma, Vishnu and other devas went to the abode of Shiva and requested Him to accept Sati as His wife. Shiva agreed and finally appearing before Sati told Her to ask for a boon. Overpowered by shyness, Sati told Shiva to bestow a boon according to His liking. Shiva said: "Become my wife".
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3. Penance of Devi Parvati at Shringi Tirtha (later Gauri Shikhara): Getting Shiva as husband
Shiva Purana (Rudra Samhita - Parvati Khanda 22 & later): Parvati taking permission for penance: After Shiva burnt Kamadeva and vanished from the place, Devi Parvati decided to win Shiva through penance. She went to her parents with maids Jaya and Vijaya to get permission for penance. Father Himavan agreed but mother Mena initially refused. Since Mena initially refused, Parvati got the name Uma. However later, seeing Her sorrowful, Mena agreed to her tapas.
Preparation for tapas: Maids Jaya and Vijaya accompanied Parvati to the place of penance. Parvati took off her ornaments and wore bark garment, deer skin and girdle of munja rope. She went to the place where Ganga had descended and where Shiva burnt Kamadeva. She started performing penance at Shringi Tirtha which later came to be known as Gauri Shikhara. To test the result of her tapas, She planted various auspicious plants. Performing Bhoomi Shuddhi (purification of ground), She created a Vedi (platform for tapas).
The tapas: Restraining mind and all the senses, She started performing tapas. During grishma (summer), She lighted fire all around and sitting in the middle continuously performed japa. During varsha (rainy season), She performed tapas sitting on bare rock which was drenched. During shita (winter), She sat within the water and continued Her tapas with great devotion day and night without taking food. Like this She continued to perform tapas reciting the Panchakshara mantra. During leasure, She watered the plants and trees along with Her maids and extended hospitality to others. Her mind was peaceful amidst all variations of climate and events. Initially She consumed food and later leaves. Then, She stopped consuming even leaves and continued tapas by fasting. Since She discarded even leaves and continued to exist, hence the devas called her as Aparna. Then standing on one leg She continued to recite the Panchakshara mantra. Thus three thousand years elapsed in the tapovana, in the place where Hara performed tapas for sixty thousand years. All the sages reached there to see Her tapas and praised Her.
Himavan trying to dissuade Her: In the meantime Himavan tried to dissuade Parvati from continuing Her tapas, but Parvati was firm. She made Her tapas more severe.
The effect of Her tapas: Due to Her severe tapas, all beings became heated and suffered. The devas and other celestial beings went to Brahma to know the reason. Lord Brahma told them the cause. Knowing that the entire universe will be burnt by Her tapas, Brahma and other devas went to Vishnu, and they together went to Shiva. Shiva agreed to marry Parvati.
Saptarshis testing Parvati: Shiva sent the Saptarshis to test the firmness of Parvati. The Saptarshis tried to dissuade Parvati in various ways, but found that She was firm in Her resolve.
Shiva testing Parvati and revealing Himself: Then Shiva taking the form of an old brahmana tested Parvati in various ways. Finally Shiva revealed His true form to Parvati, bringing the penance to fulfillment.
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Penances from Srimad Bhagavatam:
1. Penance of child Dhruva at Madhuvana: Darshan of Sri Vishnu
Srimad Bhagavatam (4.8): Introduction: Child Dhruva set out to perform penance to gain the favour of his father king Uttanapada (son of Swayambhuva Manu and Satarupa), who did not take him on his lap on the advice of stepmother Suruchi. King Uttanapada had two queens - Suniti and Suruchi; but Suruchi and her son Uttama was more dear to the king, and Suniti and her son Dhruva was rather neglected.
Path shown by sage Narada: When Dhruva left home, sage Narada met him on the path. Initially Narada Muni tried to dissuade child Dhruva from penance, but Dhruva was of firm resolve. Pleased to see his resolve, Narada Muni then showed him the path. Narada Muni instructed Dhruva to go to the virtuous forest Madhuvana on the bank of river Yamuna. Then taking bath three times in the pure water of river Yamuna, he should perform Astanga Yoga and controlling his breath gradually control the vital air of life, mind and senses. Then he should meditate on the Supreme God. Sage Narada described the form of the Supreme God and gave the twelve-syllable mantra "Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya". Then the sage told about the method of worship of the Lord. Dhruva circumambulated Narada as his spiritual master and offered him obeisance.
Entering Madhuvana on the bank of river Yamuna: Then Dhruva entered Madhuvana on the bank of river Yamuna. He took bath in the river and observed fasting at night. Then he engaged in the worship of the Supreme God.
The Tapas: On the first month Dhruva ate only fruits and berries on every third day and worshipped the Supreme God. On the second month, Dhruva ate only dry grass and leaves every six days and continued his worship. On the third month, Dhruva drank only water every nine days and continued the worship. On the fourth month, Dhruva became the master of his breath and only inhaled air every twelfth day. On the fifth month, Dhruva controlled his breath perfectly and standing on only one leg meditated on the Parabrahman. Dhruva captured the Supreme God within his heart. The pressure of his big toe pushed down half the earth. Due to his controlled breath and becoming practically one in heaviness with Lord Vishnu, the universal breathing became choked. The demigods felt suffocated and took shelter of the Supreme Lord. The Supreme Lord assured that He will stop the austerities of Dhruva.
Srimad Bhagavatam (4.9): Lord's Darshan: The Lord went to Madhuvana by mounting on Garuda. Dhruva was absorbed in meditation of the Lord in his heart. The form of the Lord in his heart disappeared and Dhruva becoming perturbed opened his eyes. Dhruva saw the Supreme Lord personally present before him. Feeling greatly agitated, he offered obeisance to the Lord in various ways. The Lord touched his conchshell on the forehead of Dhruva. Dhruva became aware of the essence of the Vedas. He then worshipped the Lord with hymns of eulogy.
Lord's Boon: Pleased with the austerities and prayers of Dhruva, the Lord awarded the abode of polestar to him which exist even after dissolution at the end of the millenium. It is surrounded by all solar systems, planets and stars and all luminaries in the sky circumambulate this planet. No one had ever ruled this planet. The Lord told Dhruva that in future he will rule his father's kingdom for thirty-six thousand years, and he will not become old. After enjoying the material life, he will go to the planet of the Lord which is above the planet of the seven rishis and never again come back to the material world.
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Bharatavarsha - The Land of Gods and Sages:
1. Stotras by Deity:
Initial: Ganesha -
Tridevas: Brahma - (Vishnu -
Tridevis: Saraswati -
(Lakshmi - Tulasi - Bhoomi) -
Others: Murugan -
Final: Vedas -
2. Spiritual Realization: Spiritual Realization
3. Incarnations & Saints: Incarnations - Rishis - Saints
4. Sacred Geography:
River Sangams -
6. Religious Life:
7. Other Aspects:
Arts - Music - Dance - Medicine - Architecture - Astronomy