Saturday, October 10, 2009

Shiva Parvati....the legend

According to legends, it is said that Sati, the eldest daughter of Daksha Prajapati, a famous King was in love with Shiva & had married him against the wishes of her father, who did not approve of Shiva’s unconventional lifestyle, staying on Mount Kailash.
Out of anger, at his daughter going away to Shiva, Daksha decided to take revenge, & organized for a big ritual, where he invited all the Gods & Goddesses except Shiva & Sati. Though uninvited, Sati still went to the visit her parents at the event, & Daksha took this chance to humiliate her by speaking insultingly of Shiva. Sati could not take the insult & jumped into the fire to immolate herself.

She immolated herself with a wish that she be born again to a King who would respect her decision & allow her to enjoy a happy life with Shiva. When this news reached Shiva, he was beyond control with anger. He destroyed the ritual of Daksha & cut his head off. On being pleaded for mercy by various Gods, Shiva finally relented & brought back Daksha to life by placing the head of a goat. However, completely grief stricken, Shiva, picked up the charred remains of his wife Sati, & began the dance of destruction (tandaav nritya). The Gods were simply scared of Shiva’s anger & made every attempt to stop him. Scared that Shiva would destroy the whole Universe, all the Gods went to Vishnu for help. Vishnu realized that Shiva was overcome with grief & the dead body of his wife was adding to the sorrow. He was dancing in a trance & was beyond control. Vishnu then used his Sudarshan Chakra to remove the corpse of Sati from Shiva & in that attempt, various parts of the body fell at several spots of the Indian subcontinent. These spots (52 in total) later became famous as Shakti Peeths. (will write about this later)