The Devas lost their strength and prowess due to a curse by the sage Durvasa because Indra (the king of the Devas) had insulted the sage’s gift (a garland) by giving it to his elephant which trampled upon it. Thus, after losing their immortality and kingdom, they approached Lord Vishnu for help.
Vishnu suggested that they needed to drink the AmruthamKsheera Saagaram (the ocean of milk). After declaring a truce with their foes, the Asuras (demons), Indra and his Devas together with the Asuras, use the serpent Vasuki as a churning rope and the mount Mandara (nectar of immortality) to regain their lost glory. However, they needed to strive hard to acquire the nectar since it was hidden in the as the churning staff.
When they began churning, the mount began sinking into the ocean. Lord Vishnu assumed the form of “Koorma Avatara” (a turtle) to bear the entire weight of the mountain and prevent it from sinking into the Ocean.
The churning continued and various objects were thrown out including the deadly poison Haalahalam, whose fumes threatened to destroy the whole Universe.
Lord Shiva then comes to their rescue and gathers the entire poison in his palm and drinks it. His consort, Parvathi, clasps his throat and the poison remains there. Hence he became known as “Neelakanta” (the blue-throated one).
No comments yet.