67(A). Birth of Asuras

“Janamejaya said, ‘O worshipful one (Rishi Vaishampaayana), I wish to hear from you in detail about the birth, among men, of Devas, Danavas (Asuras), Gandharvas, Rakshasas, the lions, the tigers, and the other animals, the snakes, the birds, and in fact, of all creatures. I wish also to hear about the acts and achievements of those, in due order, after they became incarnate in human forms.’

“Vaishampayana said, ‘O king of men (Janamejaya), I shall first tell thee all about those Devas and Danavas (Asuras) that were born among men.

“The first of Danavas, who was known by the name of Viprachitti, became that bull among men, noted as Jarasandha.

“O king (Janamejaya), that son of Diti, who was known as Hiranyakashipu, was known in this world among men as the powerful Sishupala.

“He who had been known as Samhlada, the younger brother of Prahlada, became among men the famous Shalya, that bull amongst Balhikas.

“The spirited Anuhlada who had been the youngest became noted in the world as Dhrishtaketu.

“O king (Janamejaya), that son of Diti who had been known as Shibi became on earth the famous monarch Druma.

“He who was known as the great Asura Baashkala became on earth the great Bhagadatta.

“The five great Asuras gifted with great energy, Ayahshira, Ashwashira, the spirited Ayahshanku, Gaganamurdha, and Vegavat, were all born in the royal line of Kekaya and all became great monarchs.

“That other Asura of mighty energy who was known by the name of Ketumat became on earth the monarch Amitaujaa of terrible deeds.

“That great Asura who was known as Swarbhanu became on earth the monarch Ugrasena of fierce deeds.

“That great Asura who was known as Ashwa became on earth the monarch Ashoka of exceeding energy and invincible in battle.

“O king (Janamejaya), the younger brother of Ashwa who was known as Ashwapati, a son of Diti, became on earth the mighty monarch Hardikya.

“The great and fortunate Asura who was known as Vrishaparva became noted on earth as king Dirghaprajna.

“O king (Janamejaya), the younger brother of Vrishaparva who was known by the name of Ajaka became noted on earth as king Shalwa.

“The powerful and mighty Asura who was known as Ashwagriva became noted on earth as king Rochamaana.

“O king (Janamejaya), the Asura who was known as Sukshma, endued with great intelligence and whose achievements also were great, became on earth the famous king Brihadratha.

“That first of Asuras who was known by the name of Tuhunda, became noted on earth as the monarch, Senaabindu.

“That Asura of great strength who was known as Isrupa became the monarch Nagnajita of famous prowess.

“The great Asura who was known as Ekachakra became noted on earth as Pritivindhya.

“The great Asura Virupaaksha capable of displaying various modes of fight became noted on earth as king Chitravarma.

“The first of Danavas, the heroic Hara, who humbled the pride of all enemies became on earth the famous and fortunate Suvahu.

“The Asura Ahara became on earth the monarch named Bahlika.

“The Asura Suhtra of great energy and the destroyer of foemen, became noted on earth as the fortunate monarch, Munjakesha.

“That Asura of great intelligence called Nikumbha, who was never vanquished in battle was born on earth as king Devadhipa, the first among monarchs.

“That great Asura known amongst the sons of Diti by the name of Sharabha became on earth the Rajarishi called Paurava.

“O king (Janamejaya), the great Asura of exceeding energy, the fortunate Kupatha, was born on earth as the famous monarch Suparshwa.

“O king (Janamejaya), the great Asura who was called Kratha, was born on earth as the royal sage Parvateya of form resplendent like a golden mountain.

“He amongst the Asura who was known as Shalabha the second, became on earth the monarch Prahlada in the country of the Balhikaa.

“The foremost, among the sons of Diti known by the name of Chandra and handsome as the lord of the stars himself, became on earth noted as Chandravarma, the king of the Kamboja.

“That bull amongst the Danavas who was known by the name of Arka became on earth, O king (Janamejaya), the Rajarishi Rishika.

“That best of Asuras who was known as Mritapa became on earth, O best of kings (Janamejaya), the monarch, Pashchimaanupaka.

“That great Asura of surpassing energy known as Gavishtha became noted on earth as king Drumasena.

“The great Asura who was known as Mayura became noted on earth as the monarch Vishwa.

“He who was the younger brother of Mayura and called Suparna became noted on earth as the monarch, Kalakeerti.

“The mighty Asura who was known as Chandrahanta became on earth the Rajarishi Shunaka.

“The great Asura who was called Chandravinashana became noted on earth as the monarch, Jaanaki.

“That bull amongst the Danavas, O prince of the Kuru race (Janamejaya), who was called Dhirghajihva, became noted on earth as Kaashiraja.

“The Graha who was brought forth by Simhika and who persecuted the Sun and the Moon became noted on earth as the monarch Kratha.

“The eldest of the four sons of Aanaayu, who was known by the name of Vikshara, became known on earth the spirited monarch, Vasumitra.

“The second brother of Vikshara, the great Asura, was born on earth as the king of the country, called Paamsu.

“That best of Asuras who was known by the name of Balaveera became on earth the monarch Paundramatsyaka.

“O king (Janamejaya), that great Asura who was known as Vritra became on earth the Rajarishi known by the name of Manimaan.

“That Asura who was the younger brother of Vritra and known as Krodhahanta became noted on earth as king Danda.

“That other Asura who was known by the name Krodhavardhana became noted on earth as the monarch, Dandadhaara.

“ The eight sons of the Kalakaayas that were born on earth all became great kings endued with the prowess of tigers. The eldest of them all became king Jayatsena in Magadha. The second of them, in prowess, like (Lord) Indra, became noted on earth as Aparajita. The third of them, endued with great energy and power of producing deception, was born on earth as the king of the Nishadas gifted with great prowess. That other amongst them who was known as the fourth was noted on earth as Srenimaan, that best of Rajarishis. That great Asura amongst them who was the fifth, became noted on earth as king Mahaujaa, the oppressor of enemies. That great Asura possessing great intelligence who was the sixth of them became noted on earth as Abhiru, that best of Rajarishis. The seventh of them became known throughout earth, from the centre to the sea, as king Samudrasena well acquainted with the truths of the Shastras. The eighth of the Kalakaayas known as Brihat became on earth a Dharmaraja ever engaged in the good of all creatures.

“The mighty Danava known by the name of Kukshi became on earth as Parvatiya from his brightness as of a golden mountain.

“The mighty Asura Krathana gifted with great energy became noted on earth as the monarch Suryaksha.

“The great Asura of handsome features known by the name of Surya, became on earth the monarch of the Balhikaas by name Darada, that foremost of all kings.

“O king (Janamejaya), from the tribe of Asuras called Krodhavasha, of whom I have already spoken to you, were born many heroic kings on earth. Nandika, Karnaveshta, Siddhartha, and also Kitaka; Suvira, Subahu, Mahavira, Balhika, Krodha, Vichitya, Surasa, and the handsome king Neela; Veeradhaama, Kauravya, Bhumipala; Dantavakra, and he who was called Durjaya; that tiger amongst kings named Rukmi; king Janamejaya, Ashada, Vayuvega, Bhuritejas; Ekalavya, Sumitra, Vatadhaana, Gomukha; the tribe of kings called the Kaarushakaa, Kshemadhurti; Srutaayu, Uddhava, Brihatsena; Kshema, Ugratirtha, the king of the Kalingas; Matimaan, and he was known as king Iswara; these first of kings were all born of the Asura class called Krodhavasa.

“There was also born on earth a mighty Asura known amongst the Danavas by the name of Kalanemi, endued with great strength, of grand achievements, and blessed with a large share of prosperity. He became the mighty son of Ugrasena and was known on earth by the name of Kamsha.

“He who was known among the Asuras by the name of Devaka and was besides in splendour like to (Lord) Indra himself, was born on earth as the foremost king of the Gandharvas.

“O monarch (Janamejaya), you know that Drona, the son of Bharadwaja, not born of any woman, sprung from a portion of the Devarishi Brihaspati of grand achievements. He was the prince of all bowmen, familiar with all weapons, of mighty achievements, of great energy. You should know he was also well-acquainted with the Vedas and the science of weapons (Dhanurveda in Sanskrit). He was of wonderful deeds and the pride of his race.

“O king (Janamejaya), his son the heroic Aswatthama, of eyes like the lotus-petals, gifted with surpassing energy, and the terror of all enemies, the great oppressor of all enemies, was born on earth, of the united portions of Mahadeva (Lord Shiva), Yama, Kaamaa, and Krodha.

“From the curse of (Rishi) Vasishtha and the command also of (Lord) Indra, the eight Vasus were born of Ganga by her husband Shantanu. The youngest of them was Bhishma, the dispeller of the fears of the Kurus, gifted with great intelligence, familiar with the Vedas, the first speakers, and the thinner of the enemy’s ranks. Possessed of mighty energy and the first of all persons acquainted with weapons, he encountered the illustrious (Parasu) Rama himself, the son of Jamadagni of the Bhrigu race.

“O king, that Brahman sage who, on earth, was known by the name of Kripaa and was the embodiment of all manliness was born of the tribe of the Rudras.

“The mighty chariot-fighter and king who on earth was known by the name of Shakuni, that crusher of enemies, you should know, O king (Janamejaya), was Dwapara himself (the third yuga).

“He who was Satyaki of sure aim, that upholder of the pride of Vrishni race, that oppressor of enemies, fathered of the portion of gods called the Maruts.

“That Rajarishi Drupada who on earth was a monarch, the first among all persons bearing arms, was also born of the same tribe (Maruts) of Devas.

“O king (Janamejaya), you should also know that Kritavarma, that prince among men, of deeds unsurpassed by any one, and the foremost of all bulls amongst Kshatriyas, was born of the portion of the same Devas (Maruts).

“Also, that Rajarishi Virata by name, the burner of the kingdoms of others, and the great oppressor of all enemies, was born of the portion of the same Devas (Maruts).

“That son of Arishtaa who was known by the name of Hamsa, was born in the Kuru race and became the monarch of the Gandharvas. He who was known as Dhritarashtra born of the seed of Krishna-Dwaipayana (Rishi Vyasa), and gifted with long arms and great energy, also a monarch, of the prophetic eye (Gnana dhristi in Sanskrit), became blind in consequence of the fault of his mother and the anger of the Rishi.

“His younger brother who was possessed of great strength and was really a great being known as Paandu, devoted to Satya and Dharma, was Purity’s self.

“O king (Janamejaya), you should know that he who was known on earth as Vidura, who was the first of all virtuous men, who was the god of Justice (Dharmadeva) himself, was the excellent and greatly fortunate son of the Rishi Atri.

“The evil-minded and wicked king Duryodhana, the destroyer of the fair fame of the Kurus, was born of a portion of Kali (yuga) on earth. It was he who caused all creatures to be slain and the earth to be wasted; and it was he who fanned the flame of hostility that ultimately consumed all.

“They who had been the sons of Pulastya (the Rakshasas) were born on earth among men of Duryodhana’s brothers, that century of wicked individuals commencing with Duhshaasanaa as their first. O bull among the Bharata princes (Janamejaya), Durmukha, Duhsaha, and others whose names I do not mention, who always supported Duryodhana (in all his schemes), were, indeed, the sons of Pulastya.

“Over and above these hundred, Dhritarashtra had one son named Yuyutsu born of a Vaishya wife.’

“Janamejaya said, ‘O illustrious one (Rishi Vaishampaayana), tell me the names of Dhritarashtra’s sons according to the order of their birth beginning from the eldest.’

“Vaishampaayana said, ‘O king (Janamejaya), they are as follows:

Duryodhana, Yuyutsu, Duhshaasanaa, Duhsaha, Duhshala, Durmukha, Vivinshati, Vikarna, Jalasandha, Sulochna, Vinda, Anuvinda, Durdharsha, Subaahu, Dushpradharshana, Durmarshana, Dushkarna, Karna, Chitra, Vipachitra, Chitraksha, Charuchitra, Angada, Durmada, Dushpradharsha, Vivitsu, Vikata, Sama, Urananabha, Padmanabha, Nanda, Upanandaka, Sanapati, Sushena, Kundodara, Mahodara, Chitrabaahu, Chitravarma, Suvarma, Durvirochana, Ayobaahu, Mahabaahu, Chitrachapa, Sukundala, Bhimavega, Bhimabala, Valaki, Bhimavikrama, Ugrayudha, Bhimaeara, Kanakayu, Dridhayudha, Dridhavarma, Dridhakshatra, Somakirti, Anadara, Jarasandha (not the Magadha king Jarasandha), Dridhasandha, Satyasandha, Sahasravaeh, Ugrasravas, Ugrasena, Kshemamurti, Apraajita, Panditaka, Vishalaaksha, Duraadhara, Dridhahasta, Suhasta, Vatavega, Suvarchasa, Adityaketu, Vahvasin, Nagadatta, Anuyaina, Nishangi, Kuvachi, Dandi, Dandadhara, Dhanugraha, Ugra, Bhimaratha, Vira, Virabaahu, Alolupa, Abhaya, Raudrakarma, Dridharatha, Anadhrishya, Kundaveda, Viravi, Dhirghalochana, Dirghabaahu, Mahaabaahu, Vyudhoru, Kanakangana, Kundaja and Chitraka.

“There was also a daughter named Duhsala who was over and above the hundred.

“Yuyutsu who was Dhritarashtra’s son by a Vaishya wife, was also over and above the hundred.

“Thus, O king (Janamejaya), have I recited the names of the hundred sons and also that of the daughter (of Dhritarashtra). You have now known their names according to the order of their births. All of them were heroes and Maharatha warriors, and skilled in the art of warfare. Besides, all of them were versed in the Vedas, and, O king, all of them had got through the Shastras. All of them were mighty in attack and defence, and all were graced with learning. O monarch, all of them had wives suitable to them in grace and accomplishments. O king, when the time came, the Kaurava monarch (Dhritarashtra) gifted his daughter Duhsala on Jayadratha, the king of the Sindhus, agreeably to the counsels of Shakuni.

SRIMAD MAHABHARATA > AADI PARVA > SAMBHAVA PARVA > CHAPTER 67(A) – BIRTH OF ASURAS

SUMMARY

Vaishampaayana narrates to King Janamejaya on the detailed account of which Asura incarnated as which living being on Earth.

Author: Prasanna TG on

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