Sage Vishvamitra continues his narration about the earthly course of Ganga, her begetting Kaartikeya, Krittika-stars breast-feeding that boy, gods naming that boy as Kaarthikeya, and that boy’s anointment as the Chief of Celestial Armies.
तप्यमाने तदा देवे स इन्द्राः स अग्नि पुरोगमाः |
सेनापतिम् अभीप्सन्तः पितामहम् उपागमन् || १-३७-१
senaapatim abhiipsantaH pitaamaham upaagaman || 1-37-1
“While god Shiva is undertaking ascesis thus, then the gods desiring an Army Chief for celestial forces have arrived in the audience of Forefather Brahma, along with Indra and keeping Fire-god at their fore.” Sage Vishvamitra continued his narration to Rama. [1-37-1] .
ततो अब्रुवन् सुराः सर्वे भगवंतम् पितामहम् |
प्रणिपत्य सुराः राम स इन्द्राः स अग्नि पुरोगमाः || १-३७-२
praNipatya suraaH raama sa indraaH sa agni purogamaaH || 1-37-2
“On approaching the Forefather Brahma, oh, Rama, all of the celestials headed by Fire-god and along with Indra have venerated and then spoke this to him. [1-37-2] .
येन सेनापतिः देव दत्तो भगवता पुरा |
स तपः परम् आस्थाय तप्यते स्म सह उमया || १-३७-३
sa tapaH param aasthaaya tapyate sma saha umayaa || 1-37-3
” ‘Oh, god Brahma, he who has hypothetically given a Chief of Celestial Army in the form of his potence that god Shiva is undertaking a supreme ascesis, indeed along with Goddess Uma. [1-37-3]
The potence that is stirred from Shiva and given to earth as in last chapter has not yet materialised as Kaarthikeya. .
यत् अत्र अनंतरम् कार्यम् लोकानाम् हित कांयया |
संविधत्स्व विधानज्ञ त्वम् हि नः परमा गतिः || १-३७-४
saMvidhatsva vidhaanaj~na tvam hi naH paramaa gatiH || 1-37-4
” ‘Looking forward for the welfare of the worlds, oh, knower of the procedures, Brahma, you may order us clearly what is to be done next, as you alone are our ultimate recourse. [1-37-4] .
देवतानाम् वचः श्रुत्वा सर्व लोक पितामहः |
सान्त्वयन् मधुरैः वाक्यैः त्रिदशान् इदम् अब्रवीत् || १-३७-५
saantvayan madhuraiH vaakyaiH tridashaan idam abraviit || 1-37-5
“On listening the words of gods, Brahma, the Forefather of all the worlds, soothingly spoke this to the celestials with sweet words. [1-37-5] .
शैल पुत्र्या यत् उक्तम् तत् न प्रजाः स्वासु पत्निषु |
तस्या वचनम् अक्लिष्टम् सत्यम् एव न संशयः || १-३७-६
tasyaa vacanam akliShTam satyam eva na saMshayaH || 1-37-6
” ‘What the Daughter of Mountain, namely Goddess Uma, has said that ‘you shall have no posterity in your own wives’ is true and it cannot be decried, and it is unambiguous too. [1-37-6] .
इयम् आकाश गंगा यस्याम् पुत्रम् हुताशनः |
जनयिष्यति देवानाम् सेनापतिम् अरिंदमम् || १-३७-७
janayiShyati devaanaam senaapatim ariMdamam || 1-37-7
” ‘In whom the Fire-god can procreate an enemy-destroying Chief of Celestial Armies, such an empyreal Ganga is there. [1-37-7] .
ज्येष्ठा शैलेन्द्र दुहिता मानयिष्यति तम् सुतम् |
उमायाः तत् बहुमतम् भविष्यति न संशयः || १-३७-८
umaayaaH tat bahumatam bhaviShyati na saMshayaH || 1-37-8
” ‘The elder daughter King of Mountains, namely Ganga, will graciously welcome the offspring from Fire-god, and that act of Ganga in welcoming the offspring through Fire-god will also be pleasurable in many ways to the younger daughter of King of Mountains, namely Uma, no doubt about it.’ So said Brahma to all the gods. [1-37-8] .
तत् श्रुत्वा वचनम् तस्य कृतार्था रघुनन्दन |
प्रणिपत्य सुराः सर्वे पितामहम् अपूजयन् || १-३७-९
praNipatya suraaH sarve pitaamaham apuujayan || 1-37-9
“On hearing those words of Brahma, oh, Rama, the delight of Raghu’s dynasty, all the gods have praisefully worshipped him, as their ends are achieved at the bidding fair of Brahma. [1-37-9] .
ते गत्वा परमम् राम कैलासम् धातु मण्डितम् |
अग्निम् नियोजयामासुः पुत्रार्थम् सर्व देवताः || १-३७-१०
agnim niyojayaamaasuH putraartham sarva devataaH || 1-37-10
“On going to that supreme Mt. Kailash, oh, Rama, which is heaped up with many ores, all of those gods have assigned the Fire-god to father a son. [1-37-10] .
देव कार्यम् इदम् देव समाधत्स्व हुताशन |
शैल पुत्र्याम् महातेजो गंगायाम् तेज उत्सृज || १-३७-११
shaila putryaam mahaatejo gaMgaayaam teja utsR^ija || 1-37-11
” ‘Oh, Fire-god, you please coordinate the mission of gods, oh, great-resplendent god of Fire, you may release the potence of Shiva, which you have contained so far, in the daughter of King of Mountains, namely River Ganga.’ Thus, all gods have requested the Fire-god. [1-37-11] .
देवतानाम् प्रतिज्ञाय गंगाम् अभ्येत्य पावकः |
गर्भम् धारय वै देवि देवतानाम् इदम् प्रियम् || १-३७-१२
garbham dhaaraya vai devi devataanaam idam priyam || 1-37-12
“On assuring the gods that he will do his best, the Fire-god approached Ganga entreating, ‘Oh, Goddess Ganga, you verily bear pregnancy with the potence of Shiva, since this is the select process of all the gods.’ So said Fire-god to River Ganga. [1-37-12] .
इति एतत् वचनम् श्रुत्वा दिव्यम् रूपम् अधारयत् |
स तस्या महिमाम् दृष्ट्वा समंतात् अवकीर्यत || १-३७-१३
sa tasyaa mahimaam dR^iShTvaa samaMtaat avakiiryata || 1-37-13
“On listening that sentence of Fire-god, River Ganga adopted a celestial form readying herself, and on seeing her glorious mien the Fire-god seeped throughout her. [1-37-13] .
समंततः तदा देवीम् अभ्यषिंचत पावकः |
सर्व स्रोतांसि पूर्णानि गंगाया रघुनन्दन || १-३७-१४
sarva srotaaMsi puurNaani gaMgaayaa raghunandana || 1-37-14
“The Fire-god then drenched River Ganga from all over with the potence of Shiva which he contained so far, oh, Raghu’s delight Rama, and every rill and channel of Ganga is replete with it. [1-37-14] .
तम् उवाच ततो गंगा सर्व देव पुरोगमम् |
अशक्ता धारणे देव तेजः तव समुद्धतम् || १-३७-१५
दह्यमाना अग्निना तेन संप्रव्यथित चेतना |
ashaktaa dhaaraNe deva tejaH tava samuddhatam || 1-37-15
dahyamaanaa agninaa tena saMpravyathita cetanaa |
“River Ganga then spoke this to the Fire-god who is in the lead of all gods, ‘oh, god, I am incapable to bear up the rampant fervour of yours, and while being burnt with the fire of god Shiva compounded with that of yours my life-force is very highly tortured.’ [1-37-15, 16a] .
अथ अब्रवीत् इदम् गंगाम् सर्व देव हुताशनः || १-३७-१६
इह हैमवते पार्श्वे गर्भो अयम् संनिवेश्यताम् |
iha haimavate paarshve garbho ayam saMniveshyataam |
“He who consumes fire-oblations on behalf of all the gods, that Fire-god seeing the miserable condition of River Ganga then spoke this to her, ”you may lay away that embryo here at the side of Himalayan Mountains.’ So said Fire-god to River Ganga. [1-37-16b, 17a] .
श्रुत्वा तु अग्नि वचो गंगा तम् गर्भम् अतिभास्वरम् || १-३७-१७
उत्ससर्ज महातेजाः स्रोतोभ्यो हि तदा अनघ |
utsasarja mahaatejaaH srotobhyo hi tadaa anagha |
“Oh, great-resplendent Rama, on hearing the words of Fire-god, oh, charming prince Rama, River Ganga indeed ejected that great-radiant embryo of Shiva from all her rills and channels. [1-37-17b, 18a] .
यत् अस्या निर्गतम् तस्मात् तप्त जांबूनद प्रभम् || १-३७-१८
कांचनम् धरणीम् प्राप्तम् हिरण्यम् अतुल प्रभम् |
kaaMcanam dharaNiim praaptam hiraNyam atula prabham |
“Which refulgent embryo with the glitter of molten gold has emerged from River Ganga is there that has reached earth, and from that the silver, and even the gold with its matchless dazzle have emerged. [1-37-18] .
ताम्रम् कार्ष्णायसम् चैव तैक्ष्ण्यात् एव अभिजायत || १-३७-१९
मलम् तस्य अभवत् तत्र त्रपु सीसकम् एव च |
तत् एतत् धरणीम् प्राप्य नाना धातुः अवर्धत || १-३७-२०
malam tasya abhavat tatra trapu siisakam eva ca |
tat etat dharaNiim praapya naanaa dhaatuH avardhata || 1-37-20
“In that process, copper and iron are also generated from that combustion of fires of Shiva and Fire-god, and the residua have become tin and lead, and thus that embryo on reaching the earth has evolved itself into various other elements also. [1-37-19b, 20] .
निक्षिप्त मात्रे गर्भे तु तेजोभिः अभिरंजितम् |
सर्वम् पर्वत संनद्धम् सौवर्णम् अभवत् वनम् || १-३७-२१
sarvam parvata saMnaddham sauvarNam abhavat vanam || 1-37-21
“But, just when that embryo is laid down on Himalayan mountains, entire reed-garden sprouted on that mountain is made brilliant by that glittering embryo and the reed-garden itself has become golden. [1-37-21] .
जातरूपम् इति ख्यातम् तदा प्रभृति राघव |
सुवर्णम् पुरुषव्याघ्र हुताशन सम प्रभम् |
तृण वृक्ष लता गुल्मम् सर्वम् भवति कांचनम् || १-३७-२२
suvarNam puruShavyaaghra hutaashana sama prabham |
tR^iNa vR^iksha lataa gulmam sarvam bhavati kaaMcanam || 1-37-22
“Oh, tigerly-man, from then onwards the gold with its brilliance equalling that of the Fire-god is renowned by the name of jaata ruupa , one that retains its birth-time form, and oh, Raghava, everything on the mountain, say grass, trees, climbers, and shrubs, all have become golden. [1-37-22]
The gold has the etymological name of jaata ruupa ‘birth-time-form.’ As and when Ganga’s disgorged her womb there appeared a forest of fire like gold. So, the gold glowing like fire is called gold at many places in Ramayana. Pt. Satya Vrat. .
तम् कुमारम् ततो जातम् स इन्द्राः सह मरुद् गणाः |
क्षीर संभावन अर्थाय कृत्तिकाः समयोजयन् || १-३७-२३
kShiira saMbhaavana arthaaya kR^ittikaaH samayojayan || 1-37-23
“Then for the boy who took birth from the embryo deposited in Himalayas, the Wind-gods along with Indra have arranged Krittika stars to simultaneously suckle him. [1-37-23] .
ताः क्षीरम् जात मात्रस्य कृत्वा समयम् उत्तमम् |
ददुः पुत्रो अयम् अस्माकम् सर्वासाम् इति निश्चिताः || १-३७-२४
daduH putro ayam asmaakam sarvaasaam iti nishcitaaH || 1-37-24
“Those Krittika stars have decided among themselves that ‘this boy shall be the son for all of us,’ and on making such a best resolve they suckled the just born boy. [1-37-24] .
ततः तु देवताः सर्वाः कार्तिकेय इति ब्रुवन् |
पुत्रः त्रैलोक्य विख्यातो भविष्यति न संशयः || १-३७-२५
putraH trailokya vikhyaato bhaviShyati na saMshayaH || 1-37-25
“All the gods have then said, ‘this boy will be renowned in all the three world as Kaarthikeya, as Krittika-stars have suckled him, with any doubt.’ [1-37-25] .
तेषाम् तत् वचनम् श्रुत्वा स्कन्नम् गर्भ परिस्रवे |
स्नापयन् परया लक्ष्ंया दीप्यमानम् यथा अनलम् || १-३७-२६
snaapayan parayaa lakShMyaa diipyamaanam yathaa analam || 1-37-26
“On hearing that blessing of gods Krittika stars gave a wash to that excellently auspicious boy who is radiant like fire, and who slid down from the secretion of the womb of Ganga. [1-37-26] .
स्कंद इति अब्रुवन् देवाः स्कन्नम् गर्भ परिस्रवात् |
कार्तिकेयम् महाबाहुम् काकुत्स्थ ज्वलन उपमम् || १-३७-२७
कार्तिकेयम् महाबाहुम् काकुत्स्थ ज्वलन उपमम् || १-३७-२७
“And gods called that boy, oh, Rama of Kakutstha, whose glow is like that of flaring fire and who is ambidextrous as ‘Skanda’ for he slid down from the secretions of a womb. [1-37-27] .
प्रादुर्भूतम् ततः क्षीरम् कृत्तिकानाम् अनुत्तमम् |
षण्णाम् षड् आननो भूत्वा जग्राह स्तनजम् पयः || १-३७-२८
ShaNNaam ShaD aanano bhuutvaa jagraaha stanajam payaH || 1-37-28
“Then an unexcelled milk instantly came forth from the breasts of the six Krittika-stars, and becoming a six-faced one that boy too sucked that milk from the six Krittika-stars at the same time. [1-37-28]
It is said that each of the six Krittika-stars came forward to give her milk firstly to this boy. Observing their eagerness to feed him, Skanda / Kaartikeya made his one face into six and sucked all the milk of all the six stars and become an adolescent boy in day. Hence he looked like the one with six faces, by which he is called Shan mukha , six-faced deity. Later he argues with his father Shiva that he is superior to Shiva, because he has five-faces of Shiva, plus his own, totalling to a six, and he is a six-faced deity, superior to the five-faced god, namely Shiva. In another way, the boy by birth is dextrous and he sucked the milk of all the six mothers in split second with one face, but it appeared to all deities that the boy has been sucking milk with six faces, i.e., with rapid-face-movement. Thus on establishing his ambidextrous personality, the gods nominate him as the Chief of Celestial Army. .
गृहीत्वा क्षीरम् एक अह्ना सुकुमार वपुः तदा |
अजयत् स्वेन वीर्येण दैत्य सैन्य गणान् विभुः || १-३७-२९
ajayat svena viiryeNa daitya sainya gaNaan vibhuH || 1-37-29
“On sipping the milk just for one day he became an adolescent boy on that day itself, and even though he is of delicate constitution as a boy, that taskmaster triumphed over the army troops of demons by his own vigour. [1-37-29] .
सुर सेना गण पतिम् अभ्यषिंचत् महाद्युतिम् |
ततः तम् अमराः सर्वे समेत्य अग्नि पुरोगमाः || १-३७-३०
tataH tam amaraaH sarve sametya agni purogamaaH || 1-37-30
“All of the celestial have then come together under the leadership of Fire-god and they anointed that highly resplendent boy, Skanda, or Kaarthikeya, as the Chief of Celestial Army troops. [1-37-30] .
एष ते राम गंगाया विस्तरो अभिहितो मया |
कुमार संभवः चैव धन्यः पुण्यः तथैव च || १-३७-३१
kumaara saMbhavaH caiva dhanyaH puNyaH tathaiva ca || 1-37-31
“This way, I have vividly narrated the legend of Ganga to you, oh, Rama, like that the Divine and Meritorious legend of the emergence of Kumara, namely Skanda is also narrated. [1-37-31] .
भक्तः च यः कार्तिकेये काकुत्स्थ भुवि मानवः |
आयुष्मान् पुत्र पौत्रः च स्कन्द सालोक्यताम् व्रजते || १-३७-३२
aayuShmaan putra pautraH ca skanda saalokyataam vrajate || 1-37-32
“He who is a devotee of Kartikeyaa, oh, Rama of Kakutstha, he thrives with longevity, also with sons, grandsons on this humanly earth in his mortal life, and on its conclusion he becomes one with Skanda on journeying to Skanda’s abode. [1-37-32] .