By admin on Apr 16, 2016 | In Darshana
There are a dozen lists of Upapurāṇas available in various works and the only thing common to them is a lack of consensus. However, Kālikā Purāṇa finds a mention in almost all of such lists and that in itself is a testimony to its importance and popularity. While the Purāṇa has not been explicitly associated with the upasarga “upa” on account of it being ruled out quite clearly from the list of Mahāpurāṇas, it was but natural to group it along with Upapurāṇas.
It is quite clear that the original Kālikā Purāṇa is now lost in the oblivion of time. The version available today is not what is quoted by various Dharmaśāstras. The version currently available as Kālikā Purāṇa was originally critically edited by Baladeva Upādhyāya and is clearly a Tāntric addendum rather than a classic purāṇa.
The version of the Purāṇa available today seems to be a combination of two separate works. The first half is characterized by elaboration of the mythology of Shiva and Satī, Shiva and Pārvatī, whereas the second half is centered around the Tāntric worship of Goddess Kāmākhyā. There is no other work which provides a description of the hills, rivers, ponds, deities and shrines at Kāmarūpa in as much detail as this work. Though this work is clearly Shākta in flavor, dealing with controversial topics such as Paśubali and Narabali, it establishes Viṣṇu and Viṣṇumāyā in a more elevated position than Shiva and Shakti. There are several scholars who hint at a later 'Vaiṣṇavaization' of this Purāṇa during the periods of conflict between Shāktas and Vaiṣṇavas in Bengal and Assam.
Important works that quote Kālikā Purāṇa are:
1 Kalpataru of Lakṣmīdhara
2 Aparārka ṭīkā on Yājñavalkya smṛti
3 Dānasāgara of Ballālasena
4 Chaturvargacintāmaṇi of Hemādri
5 Samayapradīpa and ācāradarśa of Srīdatta Upādhyāya
6 Gṛhastha ratnākara of Chandraśekhara
7 Madanapārijāta of Madanapāla
8 Kālanirṇaya and Pārāśara smṛti bhāṣya of Mādhavācārya
9 Gaṅgāvākyāvali of Vidyāpati
10 Dvaitanirṇaya of Vācaspati
11 Kṛtyacintāmaṇi and Shuddhicintāmaṇi
12 Madanaratnapradīpa of Madanasimha
13 Shuddhiviveka of Rudradhara
14 Nityācārapradīpa of Narasimha Vājapeyī
The verses quoted in the above works are not found in the version of Kālikā Purāṇa currently available. The current editions list names of other Nibandhakāras as well such as Shūlapāṇi, Srīnātha, Govindānanda, Raghunandana, Kṛṣṇānanda āgamavāgīśa, Gajādhara, Mitramiśra, Anantabhaṭṭa, Kamalākara Bhaṭṭa and Nandapaṇḍita.
Kālikā Purāṇa is not a Pañcalakṣaṇa purāṇa as it lacks five details: Vaṃśa, Manvantara, Vaṃśānucarita etc., in detail or in brief. This work follows an independent style not reminiscent of other classic Purāṇas. The currently available edition consists of around 9000 verses and 90 adhyāyas, divided into two halves. The first half deals with the famous mythologies of Shiva and Satī, as well as Shiva and Pārvatī. The second half deals with the worship of Goddess Kāmākhyā in great detail. It is this part which stands out and in general, the current popularity of the work is mainly on account of this second portion of the Purāṇa.
This Purāṇa does not currently find itself listed among other Mahāpurāṇas, but there are theories that there was a version of this Purāṇa which was identified as Bhāgavata which was considered to be a Mahāpurāṇa. This is stated by Hemādri in his Dharmacintāmaṇi:
यदिदं कालिकाख्यानं मूलं भागवतं स्मृतम् |
In the twelfth century, the author of Kṛtyakalpatru, Lakṣmīdhara, the Guru of King Jayachandra of Gahadvala, accepts Kālikā Purāṇa as an Upapurāṇa:
अष्टादर्शभ्यस्तु पृथक् पुराणं दृश्यते विजानीध्वं मुनिश्रेष्ठास्तदेतेभ्यो विनिर्गतम् | उद्भूतं तथा कालिकापुराणादि ||
Thus, Lakśmīdhara accepts the origin of Kālikā Purāṇa from the eighteen main Purāṇas. Chandraśekhara accepts the same in his Kṛtyaratnākara. The famous Bengali Nibandhakāra Ballālasena names this Purāṇa along with Sāmba purāṇa in his Dānasāgara:
उक्तान्युपपुराणानि व्यक्तदानविधीनि च |
आद्यं पुराणं साम्बं कालिकाद्वयमेव च ||
The quotations from this Purāṇa used by Nibandhakāras are centered around topics such as Dāna, Varṇāśrama dharma, Vrata, Shrāddha, Shaucha etc., which are nowhere to be seen in the currently available version of the Purāṇa. The quotations available from older works are clearly devoid of any tāntric character. In fact, Ballālasena clearly states in his Dānasāgara that he only quotes from those works which are not Pākhaṇḍa śāstras, in other words, devoid of tāntric influence. He even uses Bhaviṣya Purāṇa only till the seventh Kalpa beyond which he traces tāntric influence.
So we have the testimony of Ballālasena who rejects Devīpurāṇa and the eighth and ninth kalpas of Bhaviṣya Purāṇa as Pākhaṇḍa śāstras owing to Tāntric influence; and he sees no such thing in the case of Kālikā Purāṇa! This is a clear indication that the version of the Purāṇa available during his time was probably entirely different from what we see today. That version seems to be lost today as Raghunandana, in his Durgāpūjātattva, says:
दुष्प्राप्य कालिकापुराणान्तरेऽपि |
So, there is ample evidence for the existence of n entirely different Kālikā Purāṇa in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries which was Shaiva in nature and dealt with Yogamāyā who was an accessorial Shakti of Shiva. It is reasonable to assume that the Tāntric influence seen today was absent in the older version. Another discordant note in the version available today is the influence from Vaiṣṇava āgamas, which seems quite out of place when seen within the context of an overall śākta purāṇa. The worship of Viṣṇu in the current edition of Kālikā Purāṇa is derived from the Pāñcarātra stream. Thus, the current edition of Kālikā Purāṇa is a hodgepodge of Shākta and Vaiṣṇava influences.
The question that now arises is: what happened to the original version of Kālikā Purāṇa? Paṇḍita Baladeva Upādhyāya, in his introduction to Kālikā Purāṇa edited by Viśvanārāyaṇa śāstrī, says that he had seen such a copy with Balarāma śāstrī of Benares Sanskrit University which is in the form of a conversation between Tṛṇabindu and Anilāda. Interestingly, according to other sources such as Nānyadeva, Hemādri and Chanḍeśvara, the vaktā and śrotā of Kālikā Purāṇa are Tṛṇabindu and Anilāda. In this version, there is a detailed description of the tales of Shiva, Satī, Pārvatī, Skanda etc. In the Tīrthamāhātmya section, kucharatīrtha is discussed where Devī resides, such as Gaṅgādvāra, Kuśāvarta and Nīlācala. There are also some simple stotras adoring Shiva, Skanda and Ardhanārīśvara. And again, there are no dominant tāntric elements here.
Though vociferously protested by practitioners of Tantra, there has always been a tradition of mainstream proponents which has classified Tantra into Vaidika and Vedabāhya. The author of Mahimna Stava considers Pāśupata, Shaivasiddhānta, Pāñcarātra and Vaikhānasa as Vedabāhya. Even Shaṅkarāchārya rejects the core Chaturvyūha siddhānta of Pāñcarātra in his Brahmasūtra bhāṣya. It is interesting to observe the view of Purāṇas on Tantras and Tāntric practices. According to Devī Bhagavata, certain aspects of Tantra are acceptable to Vedas and it is only these aspects that may be adopted by the Dvijas.
Major influence of Tantras on Purāṇas can be traced to eight century and later. By eleventh century, many Purāṇas has effectively assimilated mini Tantras within their content. While Garuḍa and Agni Purāṇas majorly assimilated content from Tantras, other Purāṇas such as Vāyu, Bhāgavata, Viṣṇu and Mārkaṇḍeya stayed relatively free of elements dealing with Tāntric rituals.
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