Encyclopedia for Epics of Ancient India

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Read about Bhrigu at the Urday website.

BHRIGU. [Source: Dowson's Classical Dictionary of Hindu Mythology] A Vedic sage. He is one of the Prajapatis and great Rishis, and is regarded as the founder of the race of the Bhrigus or Bhargavas, in which was born Jamadagni and Parasu-Rama. Manu calls him son, and says that he confides to him his Institutes.

According to the Mahabharata he officiated at Daksha's celebrated sacrifice, and had his beard pulled out by Siva.

The same authority also tells the following story: It is related of Bhrigu that he rescued the sage Agastya from the tyranny of King Nahusha, who has obtained superhuman power. Bhrigu crept into Agastya's hair to avoid the potent glance of Nahusha, and when that tyrant attached Agastya to his chariot and kicked him on the head to make him move, Bhrigu cursed Nahusha, and he was turned into a serpent. Bhrigu, on Nahusha's supplication, limited the duration of his curse.

In the Padma Purana it is related that the Rishis, assembled at a sacrifice, disputed as to which deity was best entitled to the homage of a Brahman. Being unable to agree, they resolved to send Bhrigu to test the characters of the various gods, and he accordingly went. He could not obtain access to Siva because that deity was engaged with his wife;

"finding him, therefore, to consist of the property of darkness, Bhrigu sentenced him to take the form of the Linga, and pronounced that he should have no offerings presented to him, nor receive the worship of the pious and respectable.His next visit was to Brahma, whom he beheld surrounded by sages, and so much inflated with his own importance as to treat Bhrigu with great inattention, betraying his being made up of foulness. The Muni therefore excluded him from the worship of the Brahmans. Repairing next to Vishnu, he found the deity asleep, and, indignant at his seeming sloth, Bhrigu stamped upon his breast with his left foot and awoke him; instead of being offended, Vishnu gently pressed the Brahman's foot and expressed himself honoured and made happy by its contact; and Bhrigu, highly pleased by his humility, and satisfied of his being impersonated goodness, proclaimed Vishnu as the only being to be worshipped by men or gods, in which decision the Munis, upon Bhrigu's report, concurred." - Wilson. 

Modern Languages MLLL-4993. Indian Epics. Laura Gibbs, Ph.D. The textual material made available at this website is licensed under a Creative Commons License. You must give the original author credit. You may not use this work for commercial purposes. If you alter, transform, or build upon this work, you may distribute the resulting work only under a license identical to this one. No claims are made regarding the status of images used at this website; if you own the copyright privileges to any of these images and believe your copyright privileges have been violated, please contact the webmaster. Page last updated: October 16, 2007 12:22 PM