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Pancharama Kshetra-Parvati turns into Aparna

02/24/2010

The gods were stunned with Manmatha’s death and they were also worried about the state of procreation in the world. Without the lord of love no longer creatures in the world would be attracted to each other . Nor would there be any possibility for Shiva to marry and father children.

After Shiva left Kailasa goddess Parvati was determined that if she was ever going to get married ,it would be to Shiva.  Her father Himavan tried to persuade her to come back to his palace but she was determined to force Shiva to accept her. Since shiva was such a great yogi , the only way to gain the respect of such a great yogi was to an equivalent level in meditation . Parvati left for the forest to take up a great penance. She took a great vow that she would only eat wet leaves from that point on continuing her penance. For a thousand years she stood in the chilling waters of the ganges eating only wet leaves and chanting Shiva’s name .  This did not move shiva and then for the next thousand years she ate only dry leaves standing on one leg in the cold waters. Even this was of no effect then she started living only on air . This proved to be of no effect also …and then she discared her clothes , living only on air  and continued her penance.

Parna means leaf ( For ex: Parnavati means a hermitage made of leafs ) . Aparna means one who gave up even leafs . Parvati had equalled Shiva’s greatness in penance. Lord Shiva noticed this and decided to test her one last time . He appeared before her as a beautiful nobleman dressed in the finest clothes . Shiva in the guise of the young man says to Parvati   ” Princess  I hear that you are doing this great penance for the sanyasi shiva.Why should you subject your beautiful body to such torture for the shiva who wanders in the cremation grounds. I also hear he smears the ash of dead bodies on himself .Also I hear that he is very ugly and has three eyes …. Why not marry someone like me who is young beautiful and is royal ” .

Parvati got livid with anger ” Control your tongue stranger .Your eyes filled with materialism cannot understand the greatness of shiva. He might roam in the cremation grounds because all of creation is a cremation ground.Everything ultimately has to die and he is the master of the cremation ground. He smears himself with ash which is the burnt residue of desires …meaning he has conquered every desire including hunger and thirst . ”  Parvati was just about to curse the stranger when Lord Shiva assumed his true form.

Parvati was overwhelmed with happiness to see him.The marriage of Shiva and Parvati was celebrated with great joy and Himavan invited the trimurtis , devatas and rishis to the great occasion. Using the opportunity of the happy occasion the devatas requested Lord shiva to revive Manmatha back to life since nature’s work was stalled due to his death. Manmatha was brought back to life and the newly wed couple travelled to mount Gandhamandana  to enjoy marital bliss.

Shiva Parvati Wedding

The devatas were finally happy that Lord shiva’s marriage had taken place and now all that needed to happen was to goddess Parvati bearing a son in due course of time .

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