The Rishi is narrating the story of the death of the two demons, Madhu and Kaitabha, at the hands of Mahavishnu and continues narrating the story of the greatness of Devi to the king and the trader who came to question him about how one gets attached to people and troubles.
He meditates on Mahalakshmi, and begins to narrate the story of the destruction of Mahishasura. Mahisha means buffalo and asura is one who is identified with the consciousness of the body. There was once a fight between the divine beings and the demonic creatures for a 100 years. The chieftains of both the armies were Indra on the side of the Devas and Mahishasura on the side of the Asuras. The powerful team of the Asuras was winning over the Devas.
The Devas reported the matter to the creator Prajapati, who led the vanquished team to the place where Lord Shiva and Lord Mahavishnu were in discussion. The Devas narrated the troubles and their own defeat at his hands.
Indra complained that Mahishasura had usurped the powers of the sun, fire, water, air, Yama, and others and he was functioning on his own will. As the wicked Mahishasura had unseated them from their respective offices in heaven, the gods were roaming on earth.
“O Gods, we have presented before you all the troubles caused to us by the evil Mahishasura. Please make up your minds to destroy him and save us, the Devas,” appealed Indra.
A might power came forth at that moment from the faces of Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. A bright light emerged from the bodies of Indra and other gods too, and everything merged into one big light. The Devas witnessed with amazement the mountain of light that was generated hiding all directions from their view. That bright mountainous light coagulated into the form of a fiercely beautiful woman. From the brightness of Shambhu, the face of the woman was formed.
From the brilliance of Yama, the dark locks of hair of the beautiful lady was born. Her strong arms were created with the terrific light that emerged from Vishnu. The light from the beautiful moon created her heaving chest.
Her legs and ankles were formed from the power of Varuna, the sea god, and from the light of the earth was created the hind of the warrior woman. With the light of Brahma were created the feet and the toes with the power of the sun. The fingers were created by the power of the eight Vasus, the nose emerged with the power of Kubera. From the fire of Prajapati came her teeth and through Agni’s grace emerged her three eyes.
The morning and evening periods of calmness called the Sandhyas created her eyebrows and her ears were formed from the power of the wind. The gods were amazed by the brilliant beauty that was created out of their own powers—a deity to vanquish Mahishasura was born.
The author is Acharya, Chinmaya Mission, Tiruchi; firstname.lastname@example.org