HINDU ENCYCLOPEDIA

सनातन धर्म भूमिका

Meaning of "Jara"

Word

Jara

Sanskrit

In General

Jara is a good natured Rakshasi (demoness) and considered as a good omen. Once, Jara combined the two halves of a child born of king Brhadratha as two halves in his two wives. The child later becomes a mighty and notorious king known as Jarasandha.

Purana

The figure of Jara was sculptured on the wall of the Palace of Brhadratha, the King of Magadha to defend misfortune and bad forces. Brhadratha had married twin daughters of the King of Kasi and for a long time he did not had any issues in his wives. The King was very sorry, and went to the forest and met the hermit Kaksivan, the son of Gautama and requested his blessing for a son. The sage gave a divine mango to king and told him that by eating the fruit his wife will bear a child. The King happily accepted the mango, divided it into two and gave them to his wives. The queens became pregnant and in due course both delivered. But each of them gave birth to only half of a child. The horrified queens abandoned the unexpected object in the outskirt of palace. Jara, indebted to king for worshiping her decided to help the king. She ran to the spot and joined the two portions together. Instantly it became a child of proper form and health. Hearing the cry of the child the mothers came out and accepted the child from Jara and named it Jarasandha.

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