Monday, October 3, 2016

The Slaying of Shumbha and Nishumbha - Part 3 of 3

Shumbha and Nishumbha were shocked to see the next round of warriors also come back terrified. “Flee! Run away from the woman! Otherwise in the desire for this woman you would lose everything! Your friends, your kingdom and even your life! If you do not give up now, your entire race will be extinguished!” They told the two asuras.
Suddenly, one of the soldiers turned to Shumbha, “Your boon! It protects you only from the male of any species! She is the Goddess! Goddess Maha Maya! The Goddess who has come as your death!” The soldier said with certainty.
FOOLS!” Shumbha yelled at them loudly, “You are running away because your desire to live is strong! Go! Run away! Run and hide in the Patala.” Shumbha told them in a sneering tone. “You are talking like it was fate which brought the woman here! But I am not a fool to believe in fate! I will fight! I will sent Rakthabija to fight the woman!” Shumbha yelled.
Rakthabija had a very strange boon - one that made him a formidable opponent. He had a boon that every drop of blood which Rakthabija spilled on the earth would give rise to another asura as strong and powerful as Rakthabija himself.
Seeing Rakthabija come, Goddess Kalika blew her conch shell loudly. So loud that it almost scared the other soldiers. But Rakthabija was unperturbed.
He went towards Goddess Kalika and shook his head, “Do you think I am scared of this? I will ask only once,” Rakthabija said in a dangerous voice. “Turn yourself over to my Lord or I will kill you!”
There was no mistaking it. The two Goddesses laughed wildly at Rakthabija. “Do not boast! Fight!” The Goddess yelled at him.
Within a few minutes of battle, Rakthabija was lying unconscious in the battlefield! Terror seized the remaining asuras as they screamed and let out distress signals. Rakthabija was taken off the field for treatment.
Shumbha who was watching this from his palace turned to his guards. “Call the Kamvojas and the Kalakeyas to fight for us,” Shumbha said letting out a sharp breath.
Pursuant to Shumbha’s wishes, the Kamvojas and the Kalakeyas came to battle.
Seeing the army march towards the two women, the other women also joined the battle. All the wives of the Devas joined the battle - Brahmani came on a swan with the powers of Brahma, Vaishnavi with the powers of Vishnu came on Garuda. The wife of Kartikeyan - Kaumari came with weapons and she was mounted on a peacock. Indrani, Varahi, Narasimhi…. They all came and they all came blazing and ready for war. (These Goddesses are called Matrikas or Mother Goddesses. They are the powers of the Gods.)
Lord Shiva appeared before the women and encouraged them to finish the battle as quick as possible. That was when Goddess Ambika spoke with Lord Shiva, “Lord Shiva! Though Shumbha and Nishumbha have fought repeatedly with me, I wish to give them a chance to live. Go to them as my messenger and tell them to stop fighting or that I would kill them. This is the last chance I am giving them!” Ambika said.
Lord Shiva went to the asuras but the asuras paid no heed to the wise words of the Lord.
Then the Devis started massacring the asuras on the battlefield, mercilessly. Soon the air was filled with the screams and shouts of the asuras who could not escape from the warrior Goddesses.
Rakthabija who was in his camp heard the screams of his people and raced outside towards the battlefield.
The first Goddess whom Rakthabija saw was Vaishnavi and he hurled his Shakthi weapon at the Goddess. Vaishnavi stopped the weapon and hurled her Sudarshana Chakra at the asura. At the same time Indrani, also attacked him as Chamundi destroyed Rakthabija’s weapons.
And Rakthabija’s blood fell on the earth.
The Devas who were watching the battle were shocked because a few thousand Rakthabijas surrounded the Matrikas and the Goddess Ambika and Goddess Kalika.
The Devas were sure that all was lost…
Goddess Ambika turned to Kalika, “As soon as we fire on Rakthabija and he starts bleeding, drink all the blood of Rakthabija and make sure nothing falls on the earth! Me and the other Matrikas would injure the asura continuously!” Goddess Ambika told the other Goddess.
And Goddess Kalika carried out her instructions perfectly. As the other Matrikas injured Rakthabija, she made sure none of Rakthabija’s blood fell on the earth.
Within a very short time, the tide of the battle turned.
The Matrikas hacked just about anything in their path and soon the real Rakthabija was the only one left along with the other Asura soldiers.
And Goddess Ambika showed no mercy to Rakthabija and killed him too.
Both Shumbha and Nishumbha came to battle with their own armies and Nishumbha’s army attacked the Devis first. And as was the rule of war, Shumbha watched the war.
The battle was almost an anticlimax because after so much destruction, the Goddesses destroyed Nishumbha almost easily.
Shumbha watched the entire scene shell shocked and numb.
Shumbha drove up on his chariot and saw the beautiful Goddess Ambika and was unable to pull out his weapons. “I cannot fight you. Your beauty distracts me, Lady!” Shumbha told the Goddess.
The Goddess laughed, “Even during a battle, you are unable to fight dispassionately.” She turned to Goddess Kalika, “You are fierce! I think you should fight him. I will watch.” The Goddess said.

There was a short, supercharged battle between the Goddess and Shumbha and the Goddess first broke Shumbha’s chariot with her club and then without any hesitation killed Shumbha too….

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