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According to Kashi Khand

A Part of Skand Puran

In the realm of Kashi, a tale unfolds, intertwining the divine with the mortal. At that time, Mandarachal witnessed the presence of Lord Shiva, while the virtuous King Divodas reigned over Kashi with unwavering piety. Under his rule, the kingdom flourished, and its people reveled in boundless happiness and prosperity.

A pact had been struck between King Divodas and Lord Brahma. As long as the righteous king governed, the gods and celestial beings would refrain from interfering with Kashi's sanctity and tranquility. Lord Brahma agreed to this agreement, with one condition: King Divodas had to prove his mettle as a remarkable administrator, ensuring that all residents and visitors to Kashi were treated with respect in their religious pursuits. The king accepted the condition wholeheartedly, and his governance reflected excellence in every aspect.

Yet, Lord Shiva, yearning for his beloved Kashi, sought to test King Divodas's resolve. He dispatched sixty-four Yoginis to create disturbances in the city. However, upon arriving in Kashi, the Yoginis were captivated by its heavenly beauty and serene ambience. They succumbed to its allure and chose to settle there, forsaking their original purpose.

When the Yoginis failed to return, Lord Shiva dispatched Lord Surya, the radiant sun god, with instructions to disrupt the harmony of Kashi and shatter King Divodas's steadfastness. Disguised as an astrologer, a learned scholar, a religious preacher, a merchant, and a brahmin, Lord Surya diligently explored Kashi, searching for any flaw or fault. However, he found no blemish in the city's inhabitants or in King Divodas's governance. The radiant deity himself became enthralled by Kashi's allure and splendor. Worried that returning to Mandarachal empty-handed would incur Lord Shiva's wrath, Lord Surya made a momentous decision.

Resolving to remain in Kashi, Lord Surya reasoned that disobeying Lord Shiva's instructions was a transgression. However, he believed that by staying in Kashi and engaging in religious pursuits, he could easily cleanse himself of such sins. Thus, Lord Surya chose to temporarily establish his abode in the sacred city, becoming an integral part of its divine tapestry. In Kashi, he was revered in his twelve resplendent forms, and the Kashi Khand chronicles the significance of these twelve Adityas.

Thus, the enchanting saga of Kashi unfolds, where gods and mortals converge, and the sanctity of the city weaves a timeless tapestry of divine grace and human devotion.

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