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Marriage of Pururava and Urvashi

Marriage of Pururava and Urvashi



Pururava and Urvashi


Pururava (son of Budha and Ila) was a very strong king who ruled the earth well. He performed one hundred ashvamedha yajnas.
 The three goals of human life are dharma (righteousness), artha (wealth) and kama (that which is desired). (Usually, a fourth goal of moksha (salvation) is added.) These three goals wished to see which of them Pururava revered the most. They therefore adopted human forms and came to visit Pururava.
 Pururava treated them with utmost respect and gave them golden seats to sit on. He offered them all sorts of offerings. But in the process, Dharma received more of the offerings than Artha and Kama. This angered Artha and Kama. 
"You will be destroyed," Artha cursed Pururava. 
"You will go mad over Urvashi," Kama cursed Pururava.
But Dharma blessed Pururava. "You will live for long and you will never deviate from the righteous path," he said.  "Your descendants will rule for ever." 

Having thus cursed and blessed Pururava, Dharma, Artha and Kama disappeared. On one particular occasion, Pururava was driving his chariot through a forest. He suddenly found that a demon named Keshi was abducting an apsara (dancer of heaven). This apsara was none other than Urvashi. Pururava defeated the demon and rescued Urvashi. He restored her to Indra, the king of the gods. Indra was deligthed at this act and Indra and Pururava became friends. 

The sage Bharata taught mankind how to sing and dance. 
To celebrate Urvashi’s return, Indra asked Bharata to stage a performance. As artistes, Bharata chose three apsaras. They were Menaka, Urvashi and Rambha. Menaka and Rambha danced as they should. But Urvashi was attracted by King Pururava and kept looking at him. The result was that Urvashi fell out of step. This angered Bharata and he cursed Urvashi that she would have to spend fifty-five years on earth.


 On earth, Urvashi married Pururava and they had eight sons named Ayu, Dridayau, Ashvayu, Dhanayu, Dhritamana, Vasu, Shuchividya and Shatayu.


OM NAMO NARAYANAYA

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