THE NINTH BOOK
On Sarasvatî stotra by Yâjñavalkya
1-5 Nârâyana said :-- O Nârada! I now describe the Stotra (hymn) of Sarasvatî Devî, yielding, all desires that Yâjñavalkya, the best of the Risis recited in days of yore to Her. The Muni Yajñavalkya forgot all the Vedas out of the curse of Guru and with a very sad heart went to the Sun, the great merit-giving place. There he practised austerities for a time when the Lolâkhya Sun became visible to him, when, being overpowered by great sorrow, he began to cry repeatedly; and then he sang hymns to him. Then Bhagavân Sûrya Deva became pleased and taught him all the Vedas with their Amgas (limbs) and said :-- O Child! Now sing hymns to Sarasvatî Devî that you get back your memory. Thus saying, the Sun disappeared. The Muni Yâjñavalkya finished his bath and with his heart full of devotion began to sing hymns to the Vâg Devî, the Goddess of Speech.
6-32. Yâjñavalkya said :-- Mother! Have mercy on me. By Guru's curse, my memory is lost; I am now void of learning and have become powerless; my sorrow knows no bounds. Give me knowledge, learning, memory, power to impart knowledge to disciples, power to compose books, and also good disciples endowed with genius and Pratibhâ (ready wit). So that in the council of good and learned men my intelligence and power of argument and judgment be fully known. Whatever I lost by my bad luck, let all that come back to my heart and be renewed as if the sprouts come again out of the heaps of ashes. O Mother! Thou art of the nature of Brahmâ, superior to all; Thou art of the nature of Light, Eternal; Thou art the presiding Deity of all the branches of learning. So I bow down again and again to Thee. O Mother! The letters Anusvâra, Visarga and Chandravindu that are affixed, Thou art those letters. So obeisance to Thee! O Mother! Thou art the exposition (Vyâkhyâ) of the S'âstras; Thou art the
presiding Deity of all the expositions and annotations. Without Thee no mathematician can count anything. So Thou art the numbers to count time; Thou art the S'akti by which Siddhântas (definite conclusions) are arrived at; Thus Thou dost remove the errors of men. So again and again obeisance to Thee. O Mother! Thou art the S'akti, memory, knowledge, intelligence, Pratibhâ, and imagination (Kalpanâ). So I bow down again and again to Thee. Sanatkumâra fell into error and asked Brahmâ for solution. He became unable to solve the difficulties and remained speechless like a dumb person. Then S'rî Krisna, the Highest Self arriving there, said :-- O Prajâpati! Better praise and sing hymns to the Goddess of speech; then your desires will be fulfilled. Then the four-faced Brahmâ advised by the Lord, praised the Devî Sarasvatî; and, by Her grace, arrived at a very nice Siddhânta (conclusion). One day the goddess Earth questioned one doubt of Her to Ananta Deva, when He being unable to answer, remained silent like a dumb person. At last He became afraid; and advised by Kas'yapa, praised Thee when He resolved the doubt and came to a definite conclusion. Veda Vyâsa once went to Vâlmîki and asked him about some Sûtras of the Purânas when the Muni Vâlmîki got confounded and remembered Thee, the Mother of the world. When by Thy Grace, the Light flashed within him and his error vanished. Thereby he became able to solve the question. Then Vyâsadeva, born of the parts of S'rî Krisna, heard about the Purâna Sûtras from Vâlmîki's mouth and came to know about Thy glory. He then went to Puskara Tîrtha and became engaged in worshipping Thee, the Giver of Peace, for one hundred years. Then Thou didst become pleased and grant him the boon when he ascended to the rank of the Kavîndra (Indra amongst the poets). He then made the classification of the Vedas and composed the eighteen Purânas. When Sadâ S'iva was questioned on some spiritual knowledge by Mahendra, He thought of Thee for a moment and then answered. Once Indra asked Brihaspati, the Guru of the Devas, about S'abda S'âstra (Scriptures on sound). He became unable to give any answer. So he went to Puskara Tîrtha and worshipped Thee for a thousand years according to the Deva Measure and he became afterwards able to give instructions on S'abda S'âstra for one thousand divine years to Mahendra. O Sures'varî! Those Munis that give education to their disciples or those that commence their own studies remember Thee before they commence their works respectively. The Munîndras, Manus, men, Daityendras, and Immortals, Brahmâ, Visnu and Mahesa all worship Thee and Sing hymns to Thee. Visnu ultimately becomes inert when He goes on praising Thee by His thousand mouths. So Mahâ Deva becomes when
he praises by His five mouths; and so Brahmâ by His four mouths. When great personages so desist, then what to speak of me, who is an ordinary mortal having one mouth only! Thus saying, the Maharsi Yâjñavalkya, who had observed fasting, bowed down to the Devî Sarasvatî with great devotion and began to cry frequently. Then the Mahâmâyâ Sarasvatî, of the nature of Light could not hide Herself away. She became visible to him and said O Child! You be good Kavîndra (Indra of the poets). Granting him this boon, She went to Vaikuntha. He becomes a good poet, eloquent, and intelligent like Brihaspati who reads this stotra of Sarasvatî by Yâjñavalkya. Even if a great illiterate reads this Sarasvatî stotra for one year, he becomes easily a good Pundit, intelligent, and a good poet.
Here ends the Fifth Chapter of the Ninth Book on Sarasvatî stotra by Yâjñavalkya in S'rî Mad Devî Bhâgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyâsa.