Subhadra had come from Dvāraka, her brothers abode, with Abhimanyu to the Biraṭa kingdom as the Pandavas had just completed the thirteenth year of banishment. After marriage of Uttara, daughter of King Biraṭa, with Abhimanyu, son of Arjuna, Subhadrā sought a boon from her brothers Balarāma and Kṛṣṇa. She wanted that they should never ever separate her from them. While looking at Kṛṣṇa, Balarāma granted the boon which became the starting point of Subhadrā’s permanent association with Balabhadra and Jagannāth after the end of Dvāpara in Kali Yuga.

Premabhakti Gītā states, “Brahmā, Viṣṇu and Maheśvara were three brothers and they were the sons of Yogamāyā. Once when Yogamāyā and Rudra were in sexual union, it was objected to by Viṣṇu and Brahmā. Yogamāyā got enraged at this sudden cessation of love and cursed Viṣṇu to undergo the punishment of births are rebirths for all times to come. This was the root cause of the avatāra of Viṣṇu. She also cursed Brahmā to be in a female form in order to understand her pain. Thus Brahmā is worshiped as Subhadrā at Jagannāth Temple.

Nilasundar Gītā recounts that once during his sojourn at Gopapura, Śrī Kṛṣṇa was grazing the cattle on the pasture land and Brahmā stole a calf for which he was caught and cursed by Kṛṣṇa “to remain unworshipped” during this yuga. People who worship Brahmā get His character and become greedy and thievish. After several prayers and pleadings, Kṛṣṇa modified the order that Brahmā would be worshipped as his sister Subhadrā at Nilāchala (Puri).

Bhaviṣya Purāṇa equates ସୁଭଦ୍ରା Subhadrā and ବିମଳା Bimala. She is the inner-force of Balabhadra (equated to Rudra), as also mentioned in Skanda Purāṇa. This Purāṇa states that She is the ‘Mother’ goddess, the father-god being Nārāyaṇa, and urges worship of Subhadrā as ‘Bhadrakālī’.

जय भद्रे सुभद्रे त्वं सर्वेसं भद्रदायिनी ।
भद्रा भद्र स्वरूपं त्वं भद्रकाली नमोस्तुते ॥
jaya bhadre subhadre tvaṁ sarvesaṁ bhadradāyinī
bhadrā bhadra-svarūpaṁ tvaṁ bhadrakālī namostute

Author: Sanjay Rath


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