Shrimad Devi Bhagwat Katha

Emphasizing the Holiest Name of Maha Devi Bhagavati, Suta Maha Muni addressed a congregation of Sages headed by Saunaka Muni at €˜Naimisaranya€, the Forest of Naimisa as the Kali Yuga had no access to that Sacred Place since the €˜Manomaya Chakra€ ( The Wheel of Mental Illusion) created by Brahma occupied the entire World excepting the Naimisa Forest. The outer rim of the Wheel became thin and would stop rolling further and hence the Forest was chosen as the Sanctified one.

The unfolding of the subject matter was that of Devi Bhagavatam Purana, originally recited by Krishna Dvaipayana Maharshi Veda Vyasa, who described it as Maha Purana, elevating its status above the Eighteen Main Puranas,. Maharshi Veda Vyas divided the Maha Purana of Devi Maha Bhagavatam into Twelve Skandas€ containing three hundred Chapters totalling eighteen thousand Stanzas.The Maha Purana describes how Devi Bhagavati, the Primeval Energy, empowered Maha Purusha €to create the Universe. The five major Characteristics covered in the Purana are Sarga ( Creation of the Universe) by Maha Purusha €or  the Primeval Energy, €˜Prati Sarga, Dynasties of Solar and Lunar Kings, Manvantaras€ beginning from Swayambhu Manu and the subsequent Manus, and Portrayal of Manus and other Kings.

Devi Bhagavatam Purana consists of 12 skandhas(books), 318 adhyayas (chapters), and 18,000 verses and it is ascribed to the mythical sage Krishna Dvaipayana Veda Vyasa, who is also regarded as the author of the Mahabharata and who is credited with dividing the Vedas into four parts.

The first skandha consists of 20 chapters. The first three chapters of the first skandha deal with the praise of Suta by Shaunaka for studying the eighteen Puranas from Veda Vyasa and on the request of Shaunaka, Suta’s beginning of the narration. Chapters 4-19 describe the narrative of Śuka. The last chapter narrates the story of the Mahabharata from the marriage of Shantanu with Satyavati to the birth of Dhritarashtra, Pandu, and Vidura.

The second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, and seventh skandhas consist of 12, 30, 25, 35, 31, and 40 chapters respectively. The last nine chapters (31-40) of the seventh skandha is known as the Devi Gita. It is a dialogue between Parvati and her father Himavat. It deals with the universal form of the Devi, meditations on the major texts of Upanishads, ashtanga-yoga, the yogas of jnana, karma, and bhakti, locations of the temples dedicated to the Devi and the rituals pertaining to her worship. The eighth, ninth, tenth, eleventh, and twelfth skandhas have 24, 50, 13, 24, and 14 chapters respectively.
Like other Puranas, the Devi-Bhagavatam Purana contains narratives, sections praising the Devi as supreme, and instructions in various types of sadhana. Parts of it have worked their way into popular Hinduism, such as the narrative of the goddess Durga in her fight against the buffalo-demon Mahishasura (Book 5, Chapters 2-18), which is also described in the Devi Mahatmya.

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