Why Surya Deva Wanted to Destroy the World

1st Century BC image of Surya Deva found at Bhaja Caves

Table of Contents (The Complete Mahabharata in Simple English)

Previous Post: The Gods Request Garuda to Reduce His Brightness

Note: In the previous post, we read about how the gods praised Garuda with love to request him to reduce his size. In this post, we will find out why Surya Deva wanted to destroy the world.

After reducing his size, Garuda said, let no creature be afraid of me. And having said that, Garuda, that ranger of the skies, took his elder brother, Aruna, and went to his mother, who was on the other side of the great ocean.

Then he placed his brother, Aruna, of great brightness and immense size in the eastern regions, just when the Sun God, Surya, had resolved to burn the worlds with his fierce rays.’

Saunaka Kulapati, the sage of Naimisha Forest, was surprised to hear Sauti’s words about Surya Deva wanting to burn the world. He asked Sauti, “When did the revered Surya decide to burn the world? What provoked his anger?”

Sauti explained the issue to Saunaka Kulapati in these words.

After the gods got the amrit from Samudra Manthan, Surya (the Sun God) and Soma (the Moon God) had pointed out to everyone that the daitya, Rahu, had disguised himself as a Deva to drink the amrit. 

From that day Rahu bore ill will towards Surya and Soma and Rahu decided to devour Surya. 

When Surya reflected upon this matter, he felt that his enmity with Rahu was created because he (Surya) wanted to benefit all the devas by preventing Rahu from drinking the amrit, however, even though everyone benefited from that action, only Surya had to bear the consequences of the enmity with Rahu. All the other devas remained quiet at Surya’s misfortune without getting themselves involved in the matter. This angered Surya, and when he set in the west at the end of the day, he resolved to destroy the world during sunrise on the next day.

Note: In the next post, we will find out how the world was saved from Surya Deva’s anger.

Table of Contents (The Complete Mahabharata in Simple English)

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