Hindu dharma is Monotheism in disguise of Polytheism. Even though there exists many gods and goddess throughout the history of Hindu dharma they all were believed to be forms of eternal power which protects humanity in this universe and at the same time can overturn . One such female incarnation of supreme divine power is Goddess RENUKADEVI. From thousands of years ago there lived many people who are born as a result of many Holy Fire Ritulas who later spend their life in most divine way and attain salvation. Super natural powers they attained through intense meditation and penance were used by them for final goal of HINDU DHARMA " SHISHTA RAKSHANA AND DHUSHTA SHIKSHANA ". Sometimes they become saviour of many innocent people. So they were treated with utmost respect and believed to be an incarnation of invisible eternal Divine thing. No one is born with eternal and unsurmountable power it is their character that leads them in their path.
Divinity exists in each and every human being it should be waken up by themselves with their good qualities. One among such persons was goddess Renuka devi daughter of king of Vidhrabha region in Maharashtra who is believed to be an incarnation of goddess Parvathi in Kruthayuga.
Prasnejit was the ruler from Suryavamsha Ikshvaaku dynasty ruling current place of Vidharbha region of Maharashtra. King was well known for his supremacy but he remained childless even after getting three wives. This made king unhappy. Upon suggestion of Priests from his court he performed holy fire ritual for progeny. From the flames of fire there evolved a baby glittering like gold. King was so happy and thought the baby was a boon to him by goddess Durga. As baby was not born out of a womb of a female she is called as Ayonija and king named her as Renuka. As she was born out of fire she was even praised as Agnija.
From her childhood onwards Renuka was spiritually advanced. She had learnt each and every art , a princess must know. When Renuka reached age to marry Saint Agasthya advised Prasnejit to make Renuka married to saint Jamadhagni.
Saint Jamadhagni was from lineage of Bhrigu Maharshi son of Sage Ruchika and Sathyavathi. He was known as one among the Saptharshis and was well known for his angry. Sage can smash anyone who come to his notice by committing any mistake. Jamadhagni showed reluctance to marry Renuka as she was princess and cant sustain in hermitage with utmost austerities. Renuka then lived in the hermitage for few days and proved her self to be capable to follow Ashrama rituals. Saint Jamadhagni accepted Renuka and married her in the presence of all Guru and Heavenly gods. Lord Indra gifted a celestial cow named kamadhenu which can offer what ever we ask for.
Curse Between Jamadhagni and Sun : (Birth of Umbrella and Chappal)
One fine morning Renuka and Jamadhagni travelling along the banks of kamandalu river. Suddenly a desire of sex has raised in jamadhagni and thought to have in open area as it is barren place and no one could see. But Jamadhagni forgot the tradition that sex in presence of sun is a sun. Jamadhagni urged Renuka to walk fast due to severe heat of sun she could not walk on sand. Saint got angry and asked Renuka for the reason and she replied the same. Then saint became furious and called cursed the sun god to loose his glory and become a diminished star. Sun reminded saint about the sin he committed and cursed the saint that he will be killed by a King. Then saint Naradha came and pacified both of them and mitigated their curses that Sun will be attacked by Rahu and Kethu once in a year and loose his glory and King will be eventually killed by a king but his son would protect him. Sun also blesses Umbrella or Chathra and Chappal or Padhuka two makind to protect them from his intense heat during summer.
After that Renuka and Saint were living happily in a hermitage near Kundalipuram of current Tamilnadu. Renuka gave birth to four sons namely Vasu Viswavasu, Bhruathkvanu, Rama Bhadra. Younger son Ramabhadra is an incarnation of Lord MahaVishnu who later came to known as ParashuRama. Parashuram was a powerful champ who mastered all the sciences. He did immense penance for Lord Shiva and acquired Maha Parashu an Axe. Then onwards he is called as ParashuRam. Renuka daily used to fetch water from a river nearby and that water is used for holy rituals. By her devotion towards her husband and her idealness Renuka was capable of making pots out of dry sand. She daily makes a fresh pot with sand at river bed and used to carry it on her head by balancing with a Black Cobra.
RENUKA BEING CURSED BY JAMADHAGNI :
One fine morning when Renuka was on her way to river to bring water by means of sandpots. After making pots she stepped into the river for filling water into the pot. In water she found the shadow of Gandharva couple engauged in sexual play. Renuka up on seeing this lost concentration and sandpot on her head was broke. she tried to make new pot but sand becoming heaps and she was unable to complete that. She tried to catch Adhiseshu but she cant even catch as that snake started flewing away. She came to know about the reason about these things and went to hermitage with empty hands. Jamadhagni upon seeing Renuka coming with empty hands came to know about what happened and cursed her to get dreadful skin disease and cursed her from the protection of all Panchabhuthas. He also asked her to leave hermitage and not be in his sight.
Renuka felt remorse and tried to worship lord shiva but shiva shrine has disappeared. As there is no way she started moving away from the Ashram and travelling across forests.She was unable to get food,water etc due to curse from Jamadhagni. She moved to tribal area where downtrodden people used to live usually called as ChandalaVaatika. There Renuka reached house of a Chuckler woman's house. She was called as Mathangi a woman belonging to Mathang community. Mathangi received Renuka with utmost love and care and started treating the skin disease with medicinal roots and herbs available around. One day when Renuka was on her way in the forest she came across two saints namely Eknath and Jognath who recognized Renuka as princess and asked the reason for her bad situation. Then Eknath and Jognath thought for a while and suggested Renuka a ritual which is utmost severe. The only one who can ameliorate her condition as Lord Shiva and asked to her to do penance with utmost austerities. Renuka sat to North East in the Mathangi house and started doing penance. Time passed meanwhile Termites and Mounds start heaping around Renuka and with in few days she got completely enclosed by those Mounds. Mathangi used to worship Renuka through this anthill. After many days Lord shiva came to Renuka's vision and said that time has come to wash away her sin. Shiva asked Renuka to beg rice from near by villages and cook holy rice with it without keeping on fire and reach him in the place near by where he was situated along with Ganga who can wash her sin completely. Renuka did the same and cooked the rice by keeping pot on her stomach and lying in severe sun. To her surprise rice got cooked and by carrying that pot on head she reached Shiva. There she offered the holy rice to Shiva and bathed in the natural spring near by along with Mathangi , to her surprise all her diseases and sins got washed away. Voice from sky spoke that " Renuka all your sins got cured but now comes really a testing time for you be ready for that and accept the fate you will become immortal later and received by your husband with love and care". Feeling happy for getting rid of sins Renuka along with Mathangi reached the hermitage and went to Jamadhagni.
RENUKA TURNING MARI AMMAN/ RENUKA YELLAMMA
Sage upon seeing Renuka felt happy and came to know entire thing happened by Renuka but he hesitated to accept her because she is still a human and thought her soul to be liberated. Think her to liberate her soul and free her mind from sensual pleasures jamdhagni thought for a while and decided to give her kapaala Moksha by decapitating her head. Sage called his 3 elder sons but due to their attachement with her they couldnot do that. Sage called Parashurama and asked him to slay Renuka's head. Parashurama understood the reason behind father's order and tried to behead her mother But Mathangi who couldnot understand the purpose stopped Parashurama who got angry and beheaded her too. Jamadhagni then asked parashurama to ask for a boon. Parashurama asked to make her mother alive. Saint agreed and gave same holy water and asked him to pour on the corpse upon joining their heads. Parashurama in a hurry to make her mother alive , exchanged heads of Mathangi and Renuka and attached wrongly . Parashuram got awe stuckby seeing this and brought to ladies to his father. Parashurama up on seeing her mother with exchanged face said Mari Amman ( Mother who has changed ) thus Renuka was named as Mari amman.
Jamadhagni then named the other with Renuka body and Mathangi head as Yellamma means mother of all. Sage poured his Shakthi into Yellamma who moved to forests and started blessing the people. There by Yellamma is called as Dhandu Mariamman or Verkaadu MaariAmman.
LATER LIFE IN HIMALAYAS ADVENT OF KAARTHAVEERYARJUNA :
Saint Jamadhagni took sanyashrama deeksha and along with his family shifted their hermitage to Himalayas to live their later life. Kaamadhanenu a holy cow gifted to Jamadhagni and Renuka by Lord Indra on their marriage occasion was also taken along with them. The region they live comes under kingdom of Kaarthaveeryarjuna a blessed king blessed with 1000 hands by Lord Dattathreya. He attained many powers by worshiping Lord Dattathreya. With those powers that king turned arrogant and tried to rewrite the shashtras on his own. He neglected the words of Saints and Sages in his court. One fine day king thought of having a look at his kingdom and came to the place where Jamadhagni's hermitage was located. King after hearing about greatness of sage came to his hermitage then Saint with utmost respect recieved king and asked him to come to his hermitage and take rest for the night. Then arrogant king under estimating the sage said "How to live in your Hermitage there are no facilities nothing here to eat except leafs and buds" Then saint with utmost peace said that he has a Kamadhenu which gives what ever you ask. King by getting surprised accepted and came before Kamadhenu which gave all the things they have asked for.
King after having lavish and sumptuous dinner asked Jaamdhagni to surrender cow to him. Jamadhagni said " It was not to be held with all people it is most holy if it is used for unnecessary things it becomes humiliation to cow and one who has gifted us". Then king became angry and said he was the king of this place and one who live in the kingdom must follow king's words. The sage refused to give the cow. King fought with sage and threw arrows at him. Sage died and king caught the cow and ran away. Then Renuka after coming from river saw Jamadhagni laying and called parashurama for help. Parashurama came running towards hermitage and came to know all the story happened. Parashuram in angry went to the palace and waged war against King. Sahasraveeryarjuna then died and when blood of King touched Parashuram they both realised the reason behind their births. Parashuram in remorse tokk the cow and came to hermitage. Then all were gathered to conduct final rituals to Saint jamadhgani then Maharshi Bhrigu the head of Brigukula came and made saint Jamadhagni alive by means of Sanjeevani
DEATH OF JAMADHAGNI AND RENUKA ENTERING FUNERAL PYRE:
After defeating king and his fatherbecame alive parashuram asked his father for his further rituals. Jamadhagni said killing king of our kingdom was a sin it was not accepted by shashtras so you must do severe penance at Ganda Madhana range and do penance for lord shiva. Parashuram accepted and went back to Ganda madhan range. By taking this as oppurtunity karthveeryajuna's sons came to ashram and killed Jamadhagni with 21 arrows Renuka while seeing this called his son Parashuram 21 times each time for one arrow. Parashuram had entire vision and ran back to hermitage .By the time he reaches Jamdhagni was no more. Renuka then asked all the elders in Bhrigu's lineage to commence funeral rituals and for her Sathisahagamanam.
When Parashuram tried to attempt them Renuka rejected by saying that your penance was not completed you were not fit for this rituals so do what I say. Take a Kaavida (Two baskets hanged on both sides of a Bamboo) keep his father's corpse in one and her in another and move towards south and you will come across Baniyan tree which occupied 100 yojanas there pray for Lord Dattathreya and ask him to conduct the funeral rituals. Parashuram did so and reached place now called Mahurgad in Maharashtra and worshipped lord Dattathreya.
As Dattathreya was the one who blessed Kaarthaveeryarjuna with all powers he will purify you from sin of killing Karthaveeryarjuna. Parashuram worshipped Dattathreya with utmost devotion upon which Dattathreya came and blessed Parashuram. Dattathreya upon seeing Renuka in that pity situation felt bad then Renuka by wiping his tears said it was according to Vidhi dharma and asked to continue with further rituals. Then Dattathreya arranged Funeral pyre and worshiped both couple who are incarnations of Lord shiva and Parvathi and lit the fire. There by they godly souls of couple reached Shiva and Parvati. Then parashurama pledged on the fire that before this fire gets ended up he will traverse across this earth 21 times and killed all the kings who are deviating from dharma and neglecting Shashtras. Parashuram with his axe ran and killed all the kings and finally came to Ayodhya where Lord Dasaratha Rama was ruling Parashuram ran to Lord Shri Ram and when he came across him he was unable to raise the axe and tears rolled of from his ears. Parashuram getting fainted were lifted up by Vashishta and said that It was the time to leave this avthara as ParashuRama as Rama is the person who came to establish a kingdom which is free of all the bad things and he would set his ruling as role model for next generations.