Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana Book 3 Chapter 10:17-29

Book 3: Chapter 10

Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana: Book 3: Chapter 10: Verses 17-29
Description of the tenfold creation

The sixth is the evolution of Tamas (the principle of nescience), which clouds the reason and distracts the mind of the divas. These six varieties of creation proceed from Prakrti (God, the Cause of causes); now hear of those that proceed from Vikrti (Brahma, who sprang up from the Lord). (As a matter of fact) the creation proceeding from Brahma too is a pastime of the Lord, the very thought of whom rids one of all sorrows and who assumes the quality of Rajas (in order to carry on the work of creation as Brahma). The seventh is the sixfold creation of immobile creatures (plants and trees etc.), which is the first (in order of sequence of the three categories of creation proceeding from Brahma, and which is subdivided into six varieties. These consist of (i) trees which bear fruit without flowering, (e.g., the banyan, the Peepul and so on), (ii) annual plants and herbs that die as soon as their fruit is ripe (such as the cereals), (iii) creepers that grow on the support of other trees or walls etc., (iv) plants which have a hard bark (such as the bamboo), (v) creepers that creep on the ground alone, being too stiff to climb upwards (such as the melon, the water-melon and so on) and (vi) trees which bear fruit after blossoming. All these draw their nutriment from below; they are almost wanting in sensibility, have an inward feeling of touch alone and possess some peculiarity of their own. The eighth is the creation of animals (lit., living beings that draw their nutriment horizontally). They are believed to have as many as twenty-eight varieties, have no sense of time. are irrational (led by instinct alone), can perceive (what is desirable for them) with their olfactory sense, and cannot take a long view of things. Of these, the bovine class, the goat, the buffalo, the black antelope, the swine, the Gavaya (a wild animal very closely resembling the cow), the Ruru (a species of deer), the sheep and the camel, 0 noblest of men, belong to the category of cloven-hoofed beasts. The donkey, the horse, the mule, the Gaura (a white antelope), Sarabha (an eight-legged animal extinct now) and the yak (a kind of wild ox, the bushy end of whose tail is employed as Chowrie)-all these are classed as the whole-hoofed beasts. Now hear, O Vidura, the names of the beasts who are endowed with five claws. They are: the dog, the jackal, the wolf, the tiger, the cat, the hare, the hedgehog, the lion, the monkey, the elephant, the tortoise, the iguana (a large arboreal lizard) and the alligator etc. The heron, the vulture, the quail, the hawk, the Bhasa (a bird of prey), the Bhalluka, the peacock, the swan, the crane, the Cakrawaka, the crow, the owl etc., are birds moving in the air. The ninth is the creation of the human species, which, O Vidura, is only of one kind and whose current of nutriment tends downwards. Human beings have an abundance of Rajas (the principle of activity), are active by nature and take delight in the pleasures of sense, which are rooted in sorrow. All these three (viz., the immobile creation, the beasts and birds and the human species) as well as the creation of the gods (to be discussed hereafter), noblest of men, are creations that have proceeded from Brahma. As for the deities (presiding over the indriyas and) born of the Sattvika ego they have already been dealt with (in verse 16 above under the category of the creation proceeding from God); while the creation of the sages Sanaka and others is classed as proceeding from God and Brahma both. [1] The creation of heavenly beings consists of eight varieties, viz., the gods; the manes; the demons; the Gandharvas (celestial musicians) and the Apsaras (celestial dancing girls); the Yaksas and the Raksasas; the Siddhas (a class of heavenly beings endowed with supernatural powers), the Caranas (the celestial bards) and the Vidyadharas; the Bhutas (ghosts), Pretas (spirits) and Picas (fiends); the Kinnaras, Kimpurusas and Aswamukhas. I have thus told you, O Vidura, the ten creations evolved by the Lord personally as well as in the form of Brahma (the Creator of the universe). After this I shall speak to you of the ruling dynasties as well as the periods presided over by the Manus, United with Rajas (the principle of activity) as the self-born Brahma, the creator, none other than Sri Hari of unfailing resolve thus projects Himself (in the form of the universe) by Himself at the beginning of every Kalpa.

Thus ends the tenth discourse in Book Three of the great

and glorious Bhagavata-Purana, otherwise known

as the Paramahamsa-Samhita.


  1. Sanaka and others, being the mind-born sons of Brahma, obviously belong to the creation proceeding from Brahma. But having been created before all others, even before Rudra and the Prajapatis (the progenitors of all created beings), they are also classed as a creation proceeding from God Himself.

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