Bhagwati Tulsi is considered to be the prime part of Prakriti Devi. She is Vishnupriya and it is her natural quality to be adored by Vishnu. This Goddess who comes in the form of a tree in Kalp year of India, is in the form of a plant. Lord Shri Krishna’s arrival from the eternal abode Goloka to the death world has happened for the welfare of humans. According to Brahma Vaivarta Purana and Shrimad Devi Bhagwat, the divine Leela story of his incarnation as Shaligram is as follows.
Who is Bhagwati Tulsi ?
Bhagwati Tulsi was a gopi named Tulsi in Golok, the eternal abode of Lord Shri Krishna. She was the beloved, companion, and beloved friend of Lord Shri Krishna. One day she was luxuriating in Raas Mandal with Lord Shri Krishna and Bhagwati Radha, the presiding deity of Raas reached there and angrily cursed her to be born in human form.
In Goloka itself, there was also a Gopa named Sudama, one of the chief councilors of Lord Shri Krishna. One day Shri Radha ji cursed him to be born in a demon form. Later Bhagwati Tulsi took birth in the Kalp of India as the daughter of King Dharmadhwaj. Due to being the mistress of incomparable form, here also she was named ‘Tulsi’ and also Vrinda. On the other hand, councilor Sudama Param Vaishnav, an apart form of Shri Krishna, was born as the son of the demon Dambha and was named Shankhachud, as shivansh also named as Jalandhar.
How Tulsi got married to Shankhchud ?
He had the memory of his previous birth by the grace of Lord Shri Krishna. At the same time, due to being born from the demon and having his all-auspicious armor, he bacame three worlds victorious. Bhagwati Tulsi did extremely severe penance in the Badri forest to get Lord Narayan as her husband.
Seeing Tulsi’s severe penance, Lok Pitamah Brahma ji gave him a boon and said, “Tulsi! A gop named Sudama, who appeared from Lord Shri Krishna’s part, who is his real part, was born in the Danu clan by the name of Shankhachud due to the curse of Radha. That Shri Krishna Ansh will be your husband in this birth. After this, you will get that peaceful Narayan as your husband.
Brahma ji said the same things to Shankhchud and got both of them married as Gandharva.Vivah Pratapi Rajadhiraj Shankhchud ruled for a long time while living a blissful life with the supreme beautiful wife Tulsi. Devas, Danavas, Asuras, Gandharvas, Kinnars, and Rakshasas were all subordinate to him, due to the snatching of authority, the condition of the gods became like that of mendicants.
How was Shankhchud killed?
They went to Brahma Ji and started lamenting a lot. Seeing their pitiable condition, Brahma ji took them all to Lord Shankar. After listening to his words, Shiv ji went to Shri Hari in Vaikunth along with Brahma ji.
After reaching there, Brahma ji very politely explained the whole situation, after hearing which Lord Shri Hari said ‘O Brahmin! Shankhchud was a gop named Sudama in his previous birth, he was my head councilor, he has got a demon birth due to the curse of Shri Radha ji. He is wearing armor named Mera Sarvamangal in his throat, with its effect he is victorious in all three worlds. His wife Tulsi was also a Gopi in Goloka in her previous birth and has descended into the world of death due to the curse of Radha ji. Vishnu ji said Tulsi is my daily love, so I will break her worldly chastity in the best form and ask for his armor from Shankhchud in the form of a Brahmin, then Lord Shankar will be able to kill her with the attack of the prong given by me.
After this, Shankhchud will also leave his demon birth and go back to my Golok Dham. Tulsi will also give up her body and be established again in Goloka as my beloved.
Hearing this statement of Shri Hari, Lord Shankar came back after saluting Shri Hari along with Brahma ji and the deities with the prong. Then the gods challenged Shankhchud to fight. Shri Hari disguised himself as an old Brahmin and asked Shankhchud for his all-auspicious ‘Krishna Kavach’ and took the form of Shankhchud and made to live with Tulsi, due to which her chastity was dissolved. At the same time, Shankar ji killed Shankhchud by hitting the trident given by Shri Hari.
What curse did Tulsi ji give to Lord Vishnu?
Here, when Tulsi came to know about Shri Hari breaking her chastity and the death of Shankhchud, she cursed Shri Hari and said, “O Lord! Shankhchud was your devotee, you got your devotee killed. You are very stone-hearted, so you will become stone.
Lord Sri Hari accepted her curse and said “O Goddess! Shankhchud went to my eternal abode Goloka. When you will also leave this body, this body of yours will turn into a river and be known as ‘Gandaki’. To make your curse come true, I will become a stone called Shaligram and reside on your Gandaki river banks in India. Also, i will marry you in form of Shaligram and people will worship us as Shaligram and Tulsi.
The greatness of Gandaki River, Tulsi and Shaligram
Vishnu ji gave her a boon that Gandaki will be a very virtuous river and the one who drinks the water, will be free from all sins and go to Vishnu Lok. Tulsi will be considered prime among all the leaves and flowers that are used in the worship of gods in Trilokya. Thus Leelamaya Prabhu incarnated in India in the form of a stone Shaligram and his beloved Tulsi tree for the benefit of the devotees.
The one who wears the water dripping from the basil leaves on his head, gets the fruit of Ganga bath and ten gaudaan. The one who has worshiped Lord Vishnu daily with full devotion through Tulsi Dal, he has completed charity, house, yagya, fasting, etc.
On worshiping God with Tulsi Dal, Kanti, happiness, enjoyment, fame, Lakshmi, best clan, virtuous wife, son, daughter, wealth, health, knowledge, science, Vedas, Vedanta, Shastras, Puranas, Tantra, and code everything happens in action. Yamraj is not able to see the sins of those who has soil of the root of Tulsi on them.