Chapter 83 — Worship of Karkati as Kandara Devi or Mangala Devi

Vasishta continued:—

The rakshasi continued her meditation and remained on friendly terms with the successive rulers of the Kirata country who kept supplying her with her rations. By the power of her perfection in the practice of yoga meditation, she continued to prevent all possibility of evils, to ward off all dread and danger from demons, and to remove diseases from the people. Over the course of her many years in meditation, she used to come out of her cell at certain intervals and call at headquarters to take the living creatures collected and kept to be her victims. The practice is still observed by the kings of that place who sacrifice animals to her departed ghost on the hill, because none can be negligent to repay the good services of his benefactor.

At last she ceased her meditation, and for a long time she stopped appearing where men lived to lend her aid in removing their diseases, dangers and difficulties. Then the people dedicated a high temple to her memory, and installed a statue of her in it under the names of Kandara (Cave) and Mangala Devi (Auspicious Goddess). Since then it is the custom of the chiefs of the tribe to consecrate a newly made statue in honor of the Kandara Devi, the goddess of the valley, after the previous one is disfigured and broken. Any king of the place who out of his vileness fails to consecrate the new statue of Goddess Kandara brings great disasters on his people out of his own perverseness.

By worshipping her, man obtains the fruits of all his desires. By neglecting it, he exposes himself to all sorts of evils and disasters. These are the results of the Goddess’s pleasure or displeasure with her devotees.

10 Dying and ailing people still worship the goddess with offerings for remedy of their illness and to secure her blessings. In turn, she distributes her rewards among those who worship her in her statue or picture. 11 She bestows all blessings on young babies and weak calves and cows. She kills the hardy and proud who deserve death. She is the goddess of intelligence and favors the intelligent, and presides forever in the land of the Kirata people.