During the time when ocean was being churned first of all poison appeared from it. The deities were very terrified to see the tremendous heat it generated. They went to lord Shiva and requested to protect them from the heat of that poison. Lord Shiva drank all the poison but did not let it pass down his throat.
After the poison, Nectar appeared from the ocean, which was drunk by the deities. The demons too wanted to drink the nectar, so a tremendous battle ensued between them and the deities. The
deities became victorious in this battle because they had become immortal due to the effect of the
Nectar. This victory made the deities very arrogant.
Lord Shiva was very concerned about their arrogant nature. He went to them in the guise of a Yaksha. He asked as to what was it that had made them so arrogant. The deities replied that their arrogance stemmed from victory over the demons. Lord Shiva who was disguised as Yaksha replied- “Your pride is based on false notion, because you did not achieve victory due to somebody’s grace and blessing.”
The deities disagreed with him. Lord Shiva then asked them to cut the grass if they considered themselves so mighty. He then kept a grass leaf in front of them. Each of the deities tried to cut that grass with their respective weapons but remained unsuccessful in their attempts. They were all amazed. Suddenly a heavenly voice was heard which said that the Yaksha was none other than Lord Shiva himself. The deities realized their mistakes. They apologized to lord Shiva. After vanquishing the false pride of the deities lord Shiva disappeared.