Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana Book 6 Chapter 8:23-42

Book 6: Chapter 8

Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana: Book 6: Chapter 8: Verses 23-42
The text of the (holy) Narayana-Kavaca (a prayer invoking the protection of Lord Narayana) taught (to Indra)

(Addressing Sudarsana, a divine attendant of Lord Visnu, who when commanded by Him, assumes the form of a discus and is employed by Him in destroying His adversaries or the enemies of His devotees,) Revolving all round, (when) hurled by the Lord in the form of a discus with a rim fierce as the fire raging at the time of universal dissolution, (pray,) completely bum, (O) completely burn (my) enemy's host at once, (even) as fire helped by the wind consumes (a pile of) hay. (Similarly addressing the Lord's mace, Kaumodaki in living form,) Beloved as You are of the invincible Lord (whose servant I am), and sending forth sparks whose impact is as deadly as that of a thunderbolt, O mace, (pray), thoroughly crush, (O) completely pound the Kusmandas (a class of imps), Vainayakas (a class of malevolent demigods who are living obstacles to all noble and benevolent undertakings), Yaksas (a species of ghosts), Raksasas (ogres), Bhutas (ghosts) and Grahas (a class of evil demons who seize upon children); and pulverize, (O) crumble to dust, (my) adversaries. (Addressing the conch of Sri Krsna, named Pancajanya,) Blown by Sri Krsna and shaking the hearts of (my) foes with your terrific blast, O lord of conches, may You (be pleased to) drive away the Yatudhanas (ogres), Pramathas (a class of attendants of Lord Siva), evil spirits, Matrkas (female imps posing as mothers), goblins, Brahmaraksasas[1] (the ghosts of Brahmanas who in their lifetime carry away the wives of others and the property of a Brahmana) and other evil-eyed spirits. Directed by the Lord, O sharp-edged Nandaka (the foremost of all swords), may you (be pleased to) cut down, O mow down, my enemies' host. (Pray,) cover the eyes of (my) wicked foes, O shield with a hundred moon -like buttons! and blind the eyes of the evil-eyed.

From whatever evil spirits, comets and even men, reptiles and other biting (carnivorous) animals, ghosts or even sins we have had fear, all these and whoever (else) have stood in the way of our welfare may go to complete destruction through the (mere) utterance of the (infallible) weapon of the Divine Name. May the glorious and mighty Garuda, who is extolled through hymns (of the Samaveda, such as the Brhad and Rathantara), nay, who is Veda personified, and (even so) Viswaksena (one of the principal attendants of the Lord) protect me from all dangers with their (very) names. May (all) the names and forms and weapons of Sri Hari, and whoever carries Him on his back, protect us from all adversities and may the foremost of His attendants guard our intellect, lndriyas (the senses of perception as well as the organs of action), mind and life (itself). "Even as, really speaking, it is the Lord alone who constitutes whatever there is with form and without form, may all our troubles come to an end as a corollary to this truth (since this prayer too is inspired by the Lord and must therefore turn out to be an accomplished fact.) (Nay,) even as the Lord, though undifferentiated in the eye of those who have realized their identity with Him, Himself acquires by (dint of) His own Maya (creative energy) potencies (of various kinds) as well as forms and names, jewels and weapons, may the same omniscient and all-pervading Lord Sri Hari protect us on the strength of this very fact by all His manifestations at every place and time. (Finally) may Lord Narasimha (the divine Man-Lion) defend us in (all) the quarters as well as in the intervening corners, above and below and all round, inside as well as outside, dispelling the fear of (all) His people (devotees) by His roar and having eclipsed all luminaries by His own (all-absorbing) effulgence."

O Indra, this prayer, imbued with the spirit of Lord Narayana (and affording protection even as an armour), has been (duly) taught to you. Protected by this, you will easily and completely conquer (all) the generals of the demon troops. Anyone whom the man wearing (protected by) this armour may behold with his eyes or duly touch with his feet, is immediately and completely rid of (all) fear. (And) no fear from a ruler, robbers, evil spirits and so on, nor from a tiger and other ferocious animals nor from any other quarter can ever seize the man who has his mind fixed on this sacred text (prayer). Of yore, a certain Brahmana, who was a scion of the sage Kusika and had his mind fixed on this sacred text, cast off his body in a desert through concentration of mind accompained by retention of breath. Surrounded by ladies, Citraratha, the chief of the Gandharvas once flew in his aerial car over the spot where the Brahmana had died and instantly fell down with his car head downwards. Picking up the bones (of the deceased Brahmana) according to the advice of (the sages known as) the Valakhilyas (who apprised him of the wonderful efficacy of the Narayana-Kavaca and told him that it was impossible for him to proceed further unless and until the bones had been removed from there), he dropped them into the (holy) river Saraswati, which flew in an easterly direction (close by), bathed (in the sacred stream) and (then) retumed to his own abode (the realm of the Gandharvas), amazed (over the incident). Sri Suka continued : (All) beings (men) bow to him who listens to this (prayer) at an opportune moment (when he is threatened with some danger) and who fixes his mind on it; nay, he is rid of all fear. Having learnt this prayer from Viswarupa, Indra (who performed a hundred sacrifices in his previous life, which entitled him to this rank) completely and decidedly conquered the demons in battle and enjoyed the sovereignty of (all) the three worlds (heaven, earth and the intermediate region).

Thus ends the eighth discourse, entitled "The text of the Nara yana-Kavaca taught' in Book Six of the great and glorious Bhagavata-Purana,otherwise known as the Paramahamsa-Samhita.


  1. Also cf. Manusmrti XII.60. (Yajnavalkya-Smrti III. 212)

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