Lord Shiva is hailed as one of the supreme beings in this world. The Lord of Destruction, the title comes with no short of roles, responsibilities, and legends attached to the root of it.
Lord Shiva is one of the main deities in Hinduism, he is worshipped as the supreme being and the destroyer of evil. He is also known as Mahadeva, which means "Great God," and is often portrayed as a yogi with matted hair, a crescent moon on his forehead, a trident in his hand, and a serpent around his neck.
One of the three main deities of Hinduism, along with Brahma and Vishnu, Lord Shiva is one of the powerful gods. He is married to Goddess Parvati, who is revered as the mother goddess because she is seen as the personification of heavenly feminine energy.
Lord Shiva is considered to be the embodiment of consciousness and is revered by his devotees as the source of all creation and the ultimate truth. He is often associated with meditation, asceticism, and self-discipline, and his teachings stress the importance of inner transformation and the attainment of spiritual liberation.
The story of Jalandhara begins with Lord Indra being enraged that people no longer hailed him as the mightiest, but instead looked up to the Holy Trinity, Lord Brahma, Lord Vishnu, and Lord Shiva. However, Lord Indra could not understand people’s devotion to Lord Shiva, as he was the Destroyer.
The Origin of Jalandhara
1. Fight between Lord Shiva and Indra
In the Shiva temple, a nude yogi with matted hair and a radiant face stood in the way of Indra and Brihaspati as they made their way up Mount Kailasha to see Shiva. Shiva assumed the yogi's appearance was a test of Indra and Brihaspati's intelligence.
Indra, who did not recognise the yogi, was enraged that he was blocking their path. When Indra requested the man to move, he refused. Indra felt upset when he didn't get a response, so he threatened him with a thunderbolt.
In response, Shiva rendered Indra's thunderbolt harmless and paralyzed his arm. When Indra did this, Shiva became enraged and his eyes turned a terrifying shade of crimson.
His third eye opened in rage and nearly cost Indra his life. Recognising Shiva, Brihaspati asked him to forgive Indra. In order to spare Indra's life, Shiva shot fire from his eye into the ocean, where it met the water and took the shape of a kid.
2. Jalandhara's Birth from Lord Shiva's Third Eye's Fire
Lord Jalandhara was born from the flames that emanated from Lord Shiva's third eye. The flames were so intense that they formed into a powerful demon named Jalandhara.
Jalandhara grew up to be a fierce warrior and had immense powers that made him almost invincible. He gained control over the ocean and created his own kingdom, which he ruled with an iron fist.
3. Brahma Descends to Meet Baby Jalandhara
The fury of the all-powerful Lord Shiva was so great that it instantly turned into a newborn upon being deposited in the ocean waves. The infant's cries were endless. God of all creation, Lord Brahma, responded to the baby's screams by making his way to the scene. He swooped down to scoop up the infant. The infant he found weighed a lot.
Lord Brahma felt the baby's little hands pluck at his beard as he lifted up the infant. The infant's tug on his beard was so strong that it almost caused Lord Brahma to lose it. Lord Brahma wiped his eyes and gazed at the infant, saying, "You are very strong."You have strengthened my eyes and provided 'jala'
Jalandhara grew up feeling increasingly confident in his superior physical prowess. He knew then that his strength was sufficient to vanquish any opponent. Inviting Jalandhara to join them, the gods figured they could harness his power. Jalandhara, on the other hand, had different plans. His goal was to rise to power among the Asuras.
Jalandhara Rise to Power
1. Jalandhara's Early Life and Adulthood
Jalandhara had a magical upbringing. He was carried aloft by the wind and flew across the ocean; he kept lions as pets; and the largest birds and fishes bowed to his authority.
After maturing into a gorgeous man, Jalandhara was anointed emperor of the Asuras by their guru, Shukra. Jalandhara possessed incredible strength and was widely regarded as one of the most formidable asuras in history. He wed Vrinda, the asura Kalanemi's daughter. Jalandhara was ruled by noblemen who upheld law and order.
The life and times of Jalandhara are a tragic tale of pride, ego, and ultimate failure. It's a reminder that good and the laws of the cosmos can triumph over even the mightiest of beings.
2. Jalandhara's Marriage with Vrinda
Jalandhara is frequently portrayed as a powerful demon who marries Vrinda, a passionate devotee of Lord Vishnu. Jalandhara's power and invincibility came from Vrinda's chastity and devotion to her husband.
Jalandhara, according to tradition, falls in love with Vrinda and proposes to her. Vrinda, who was completely loyal to her husband, declined his proposition. Jalandhara then utilised his abilities to create an illusion, fooling Vrinda into believing her husband had perished. Vrinda agreed to marry Jalandhara despite her grief.
Because of Vrinda's constant love and purity, Jalandhara became invincible after their marriage.
3. Jalandhara - The Powerful Warrior King
After marrying Vrinda, Jalandhara's strength increased, and the Guru of the Asuras, hukracharya, took notice. He made the executive decision to bestow the Asura throne upon Jalandhara. Even the Asuras willingly sided with Jalandhara.
In a short time, Jalandhara had conquered the entire planet. The mighty Jalandhara empire was able to topple every king on the planet. Jalandhara would soon be able to see Indra's heavenly realm. The gods of the sky, including Indra and the rest of the Devas, were blissfully unaware of Jalandhar's schemes. Jalandhara launched a surprise attack on the Devas. The helpless Devas had no choice but to retreat.
The Devas were at a loss for what to do. The most potent weapon they possessed, Indra's Vajra, was ineffective against Jalandhara. The entire assembly of gods visited Brahma. The Supreme Being Lord Brahma addressed the Devas. After explaining how Jalandhara came into being, he concluded, "Jalandhara was born out of the anger of Lord Shiva, so he can be defeated only by Lord Shiva."
Indra asked, "Do you think it will work if we go and ask Lord Shiva and talk to Jalandhara?"
Brahma nodded skeptically, "We will have to ask him," but he added, "Jalandhara has become so arrogant, I doubt whether Lord Shiva can make him see sense."
Lord Shiva complied with the Devas' request and visited Jalandhara. Jalandhara, however, was so conceited that he dared to mock the Lord Himself. Jalandhara called out on Lord Shiva being a hypocrite as he called himself an ascetic but had a wife.
Lord Shiva restrained his wrath and made an effort to reason with Jalandhara, but he was unsuccessful. The arrogant Jalandhara, however, refused Lord Shiva's peace overture.
After his encounter with Jalandhara, Lord Shiva returned to Kailash and explained the situation to the Devas. Finally, Lord Shiva said, "I fear we need to destroy Jalandhara." Everyone believed that victory was guaranteed if Lord Shiva himself led them into battle.
Jalandhara's War with Lord Shiva
1. Fight Between Jalandhara and Lord Shiva
The Devas were shaken by their loss of power and upset by their humiliating defeat. Narada, the heavenly sage, consulted the gods and then travelled to Jalandhara. When Jalandhara questioned him about his trip, he said that he wanted to see if any other world could compare to the magnificence of Kailasha, Shiva's home.
Jalandhara responded by displaying his wealth to Narada, who said that his wife was not the most attractive. Then, Narada went on to tell Shiva all about the splendor of Parvati's home and her husband, Shiva.
Jalandhara sent his envoy Rahu to accuse Shiva of dishonesty because the god seemed to be an ascetic but secretly maintained a relationship with his wife Parvati. He suggested Shiva give him Parvati.
Shiva raged at the insults that Jalandhara painted on him that a terrifying beast (Krttimukha) emerged from his forehead and nearly killed Rahu, the messenger who had delivered the demand.
With war now inevitable, Jalandhara led his army straight towards Kailasha, only to discover that Shiva had abandoned the holy site in favour of a peak overlooking Lake Manasa. Nandi marched against them and wreaked havoc, but the army of the gods was heavily defeated and suffered heavy casualties. Then, Parvati asked Shiva to join the conflict.
Lord Shiva came along with Virabhadra and Manibhadra, two manifestations of his anger, and urged Parvati to be careful while he was gone since asuras in disguise would try to harm her. Jalandhara pretended to be Shiva and tricked Parvati by visiting her. After recognising him, Parvati left in a fit of extreme rage.
2. Vrinda Curses Lord Vishnu
After meditating on Vishnu, the goddess Parvati commands him to trick Vrinda exactly as Jalandhara had done.
Vishnu induces a nightmare in which Vrinda sees Lord Shiva murder Jalandhara. By acting the part of an ascetic, he is able to convince everyone that he is responsible for bringing Jalandhara back to life.
Vrinda was overjoyed to see her husband again and spent several days in the woods with him after he had been revived. When she realised it was Vishnu, she cursed him, saying that one day someone would trick his own wife (which comes true when Sita is kidnapped by Ravana) just like he had tricked her, that he would wander around in distress with Shesha (Lakshmana), and that he would seek the help of monkeys (vanaras). With that, she walked into the flames to sacrifice herself. Her spirit departed her body at the funeral pyre and eventually joined Parvati.
Death of Jalandhara
When Jalandhara found out about the trickery and his wife's death, he returned to the battlefield, leaving Mount Kailasha in a rage. As soon as the illusion was broken, Shiva and his army saw the reality. Shiva battled Sumbha and Nisumbha, who eventually ran away.
Parvati ultimately ended up killing them. Then Jalandhara challenged Shiva to a duel. After most of Jalandhara's army had been killed, Shiva severed his head with a chakra (discus) he had fashioned from his toe near the end of the battle. After his passing, his soul joined Shiva, just as Vrinda's had joined her husband.
Jalandhara is a well-known character in Hindu mythology, and he is frequently portrayed as a formidable demon who challenged the gods and even Lord Shiva himself. Jalandhara's birth and early life are depicted in several stories, including one in which he is the son of Vishnu and Holika and another in which he is born from Lord Shiva's third eye's fire.
Jalandhara is frequently represented as an arrogant and strong demon who is eventually conquered by the forces of righteousness and the laws of the universe, regardless of the rendition. His defeat is viewed as a symbol of good triumphing over evil and righteousness triumphing over arrogance.
Jalandhara's marriage to Vrinda is especially important in Hindu mythology because it emphasizes the virtues of fidelity, devotion, and purity in partnerships. It also emphasizes the implications of gaining power and control over people by deception and dishonesty.
Overall, Jalandhara's character serves as a reminder of the eternal battle between good and evil, as well as the need to stick to one's convictions and principles.