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Story of Andhakasura

Shiva was once sitting on Mount Mandara. Paravati came up from behind, so that Shiva could not see her, and covered Shiva's eyes with her two hands. Shiva could not see and everything seemed to be dark to him. Parvati's hands sweated from the exertion and the sweat fell down on the ground. From this sweat, a dark and fierce creature was born and started to roar.

Parvati, said Shiva, What are you up to ? First, you cover up my eyes so that I can't see. Next, you roar so as to frighten me.

Not I, replied Parvati. See for yourself. I wonder where this creature has come from.

She removed her hands and Shiva saw the being in front of them. It is our son, said Shiva. It was born from your sweat when you covered my eyes. Since it was born when my eyes were in darkness, let it be called Andhaka.

Andhaka was born blind, as Shiva was effectively blind when Andhaka was born.

There was an asura named Hiranyanetra. (In other Puranas, this same asura is referred to as Hiranyaksha.) Hiranyanetra had no sons.

He therefore began to pray to Shiva so that he might have a son. Shiva told Hiranyanetra that it was impossible for him to have a son. However, if he so desired, he could have their son Andhaka and bring him up as his own son.

Hiranyanetra gladly agreed to this.



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