Kumārasambhava

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For the Malayalam film, see Kumara Sambhavam.

Kumārasambhavam (Sanskrit: कुमारसम्भवम् , IAST: Kumāra-sambhavam) is a Sanskrit epic poem by Kālidāsa. The Kumārasambhava is widely regarded as one of Kālidāsa's finest works, a paradigmatic example of Kāvya poetry. The style of description of spring set the standard for nature metaphors pervading many centuries of Indian literary tradition.[1] Kumarasambhava basically talks about the birth of Kumara (kartikeya), the first son of Lord Shiva and Parvati.[2] The period of composition is uncertain, although Kālidāsa is thought of as having lived in the 5th century AD.

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Kumārasambhava literally means "Birth of Kumara". This epic of seventeen cantos entails Shringara Rasa, the rasa of love, romance, and eroticism, more than Vira rasa (the rasa of heroism). Tarakasur, a rakshasha (or demon) was blessed that he could be killed by none other than Lord Shiva's son, however, Shiva had won over Kama-deva (the god of love). Parvati performed great tapasya (or spiritual penance) to win the love of Lord Shiva. Consequently, Shiva and Parvati's son Murugan was born to restore the glory of Indra, the king of Gods.

According to Indian tradition, Kālidāsa had left his home in pursuit of knowledge and to become worthy of his intellectual wife Vidyottamā (lit. "epitome of erudition"). When he returned from this conquest, his wife asked, "asti kaścit vāgviśeṣaḥ? (अस्ति कश्चित् वाग्विशेषः)" — "Is there any erudition [which should prompt me to extend a special welcome to you]?" Kālidāsa impressed his wife with the answer she expected and over the next few years created three great epics, each beginning with one of the three words uttered by his wife: 'asti' — Kumārasambhava, 'kaścit' — Meghadūta, and 'vāk' — Raghuvaṃśa.[citation needed]

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