The Shakti Of A Woman

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A woman is the shakti in a man’s life. A woman committed to her man can take him to any heights…be it conquering this world (prithvilok) or all the three lokas combined.

Shiv Purana narrates the story of the Demon King Shankhchud. Born to King Dumbh upon boon by Lord Vishnu, he was blessed with extraordinary powers and grew up to become the King of Demons. Shankhchud was actually a rebirth of Sudama, the friend of Lord Krishna, who had been cursed by Radhaji to be born amongst the demons. Shankhchud performed penance for Lord Brahma and requested him for a boon such that no deva can defeat him. Lord Brahma then advised him to marry Tulsi, daughter of Dharamdhvaj, who was immersed in the penance for Lord Vishnu.

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Shankhchud married Tulsi. Tulsi was an extremely virtuous woman blessed with yogic powers. Her devotion to husband and chastity created a protective sheath around Shankhchud rendering him invincible. Backed by the shakti of his wife, Shankhchud then established his rule in all the three worlds, creating a stir in creation. No devta could withstand his magnanimous glow. Defeated, they approached Lord Shiv for intervention.

Lord Shiv along with his ganas, waged a war against Shankhchud. In the war, goddess Bhadrakali used her powers over Shankhchud, but he remained undefeated since he was protected by the shakti of his wife. Goddess Kalika then approached Lord Shiv, who raised his trishul against the demon. Then there was an akashvani that requested Lord Shiv not to do so, since that would amount to breaching the maryada of devas, as till the time  the chastity of Tulsi was intact, Shankhchud was blessed to remain undefeated.

Lord Shiv then requested Lord Vishnu for intervention, who using his maya shakti, guised as Shankhchud breached the chastity of Tulsi. Having lost his protective shield, Shankhchud was killed in the battle by Lord Shiv. A dishevelled and anguished Tulsi accused Lord Vishnu of being stone-hearted and cursed him to become a stone (the shaligram). Lord Shiv told Tulsi that her devotion and penance will not go to waste, she had done penance for Lord Vishnu and after leaving the body she will join him in vaikunth while her body would flow as River Gandaki. He also blessed her to become the Tulsi plant which would hold a special place in the worship of Lord Vishnu.

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