Lord Brahma replied to another question of Sage Narada as to how Lord Rudra a Super Yogi married Devi Sati. As a preface to the reply, Lord Brahma described a bit of His own auto-biography about His ‘Manasic’ (mind born) children viz. Sandhya and Manmadha. He got infatuated with Sandhya and Rudra Deva chastised Brahma, who felt bad at the reprimand and was on the look out for an opportunity to prove that Rudra Deva too should one day be a victim of passion. Lord Vishnu advised against such attempts as Rudra Deva was far above such a mind-set. Meanwhile Sandhya could not overcome the feeling of shame caused to her by Brahma and did penance for thousands of years under the tutelage of Sage Vasishtha (who disguised as a Brahmana, named Medatithi, at the instance of Lord Brahma) and prayed to Bhagavan Siva with the Potent Mantra Om Namo Shankaraya Namaha Om as also the method of worship to Bhagavan Siva. Since her prayers were not responded, she prepared herself to jump into the Agni kunda (Fire Pit) of a Yagna being then performed by Medatithi, her Guru. Rudra Deva made His vision to Sandhya and asked her for boons. She desired that none in her clan should become a victim of lust, that she should be an example of a chaste woman and that her husband should never cast an evil eye on another woman. Rudra Deva agreed to her boons and advised her to fall in the fire pit thinking of a person whom she desired as her husband in her next birth. He further blessed Sandhya that in the birth subsequent to her next birth, she would be born as Sati Devi to Daksha Prajapati and her further birth thereafter would be the daughter of Himaraja as Girija Devi Herself! Having heard Rurda Deva about His supreme blessing about the future vision, Devi Sandhya leapt into the fire pit thinking of Medathithi as her next husband; indeed Medatithi was actually Sage Vasishtha himself! The ‘Prana Vayu’ or the Vital Air of Sandhya’s burnt body in the fire pit was absorbed by Bhagavan Himself and the fire of the Yagna was carried to the Solar System and Sun God transformed it as Pratas Sandhya, Madhyahnika Sandhya and Sayam Sandhya or the Morning, afternoon and Evening timings of a Day. The Sages at the Yagna were awe-struck that Sandhya Devi was reborn as a girl child in the Fire pit itself , named Arundhati and when she attained of age, she was married to Sage Vasishta as the function was attended by Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesa themselves. Devi Arundhati is a unique example of chastity in the annals of History till date. [The practice of Vedic weddings continues even now and all the new couples as a part of the Rituals are shown the Star of Arundhati as an ideal example].
Sri V.D.N.Rao and Shri Kanchi Kamakoti Peetham
Kamakoti.org presents the Essence of Puranas in English, condensed by Sri. V.D.N.Rao, devotee of Sri Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam. Compiled, Composed and Interpreted by V.D.N.Rao, Former General Manager, India Trade Promotion Organisation, Pragati Maidan, New Delhi Ministry of Commerce, Govt. of India The author can be contacted at [email protected]