Even after this, Parashurama's wrath did not subside. He felt uneasy and full
of anguish whenever he saw his sorrowful mother. In his anguished heart was slowly
taking shape a plan of action. Finally, Parashurama vowed: "All these kings
are evil men. They stole the cow, which had fed them; they killed my father.
They made my mother suffer widowhood. This entire kingly class should be destroyed.
The pious cannot live in peace till then. Let me sharpen the axe. I am going
to wipe out the whole lot of them." Carrying the axe on his shoulder, he
traversed the earth twenty-one times chopped off all the arrogant Kshatriya,
wiping out the entire royalty.
|PARASHURAMA SLAYING ALL
It is said Parashurama built lakes out of the blood of the evil princes he killed.
There he prayed for peace to his father's soul. These lakes are known as 'SYAMANTA
PANCHAKA'. He conducted 'ASHWAMEDHA', 'VAJAPEYA' and other sacrifices to purify
himself and gifted the land he had acquired after killing the princes to the
priestly men who had come to these sacrifices. Finally, he bathed himself in
the river Saraswati, built a hermitage at the foot of the Mahendra Mountain and
settled down for penance. It is believed Parashurama is living there even today,
as he is ageless.
|PARASHURAMA - THE ANNIHILATOR OF KSHATRIYAS
When Parashurama decided to build a hermitage for himself, a problem confronted
him. He had given away all the land he had acquired. Now, any plot upon which
he settled down would mean his taking back the land he had donated, and it would
be a wrongful act.
He then found a solution for the problem. He threw his axe into the sea and requested
the King of the Ocean to give him land up to the spot where the axe hit the seawaters.
There he built his ashram. This came to be known as 'Parashurama Srishti'. It
is an age-old belief that this stretch of land would always be prosperous and
no drought or disease would ever affect the region.
Though bloody, Parashurama's rebellion contains many instances
of his submission to 'Dharma'. He did not kill those kings who performed religious
sacrifices (yajnas) and kings like Janaka were thus saved; he
did not kill married princes, and thus
king Dasharatha and others were spared. He did not attack
women. In fact, it
I said that upon knowing that Parashurama would not harm women, some Kshatriya
princes donned the robes of women and escaped amidst female groups. One such
person came to be known a 'NARI-KAVACHA' (one who sought protection amidst women.)
There are stories pertaining to Parashurama in Ramayana and Mahabharata.
Parashurama in Ramayana:
Vishnu appeared on the earth as Sri Rama, son of king
Dasharatha, and his consort Lakshmi was born as Sita, daughter of King Janaka.
On her reaching marriage able age, a 'Swayamvara' (an assembly wherein a princess
chooses a prince as her mate from amongst the invitees) was arranged. Many were
those who came with high hopes of securing her hand. At the palace of Janaka,
there was an ancient bow blessed by Lord Shiva. Janaka announced that his daughter
would marry the prince who could bend the bow and tie it up. All the assembled
princes attempted it and failed while Sri Rama easily accomplished the task broke
the bow into two and Sita married him.
Parashurama, upon learning of Sri Rama's breaking the bow, became angry. Parashurama
had learnt archery from Lord Shiva. Added to his anger was the fact that a Kshatriya
prince had accomplished the feat. As Sri Rama was heading toward Ayodhya with
his father Dasharatha wife Sita and others, Parashurama confronted them and a
battle ensued between him and Sri Rama. The former wielded his axe while Sri
Rama replied with his famous 'KODANDA' bow. As they stood confronting each other
their eyes met; and both instantly realized that they were the incarnations of
the same Supreme Power. The Vishnu-effulgence of Parashurama merged itself with
Sri Rama's personality. Parashurama realized that his incarnation had come to
an end and returned to his hermitage in the Mahendra Mountain.