May 30, 2024

There is a story about the birth of Mahalakshmi. Once, Durvasa sage presented a garland to the king of Devas, Indra. This garland was very special. It would never wilt. Indra in turn gave it to Airavata his elephant. Airavata not knowing its value played with it and trampled it. Durvasa happened to see this and he got very angry. He cursed all the gods that they would lose their power. Thus the gods lost their power and before long the demons or asuras became more powerful and took over their world. The demons created havoc in the world of Devas and they had no choice but to run to their creator Lord Brahma. Lord Brahma asked them to seek the help of Vishnu to churn the Ksheerasagara, the ocean of milk.

Vishnu agreed to help Devas and took the incarnation of tortoise. Mantara mountain became the stick for churning whcih was placed on the shell of the tortoise. Vasuki, the snake become the rope to twirl the mountain. The demons also agreed to help in churning but they wanted a share in what came out. Many things came out of this churning. It is said that moon came out of this who is regarded as the brother of Lakshmi. Alakshmi, the goddess of misfortune also was churned out. When Lakshmi came out she chose Lord Vishnu as her consort. Thus Lakshmi was born out of the ocean. She made her abode at the feet of Lord Vishnu.

The story goes on that so many dreadful things came out of this churning. A deadly poison came out and this was swallowed by Lord Shiva. Finally Dhanvanthri came with amruth. Whether the amruth or the elixir of life was taken by the demons forms the rest of the story. Mohini, the female aspect of Mahavishnu entices the asuras with her looks and gives the amruth to the devas. Finally the gods get back their lost kingdom.