Continuing with his narration, sage Mahatapa said – “During ancient times, there lived a mighty demon named ‘Andhakasur’. Andhakasur had become arrogant because of a boon of immortality received from lord Brahma. Being tormented by Andhakasur, all the deities went to seek lord Brahma’s help. Lord Brahma took the deities to lord Shiva who agreed to kill the wicked demon- Andhakasur.

The battle commenced and a fierce dual fight broke out between Lord Shiva and Andhakasur. Shiva attacked Andhakasur with his trident. Stream of blood oozed out from the wound, but to Shiva’s utter amazement each drop of blood falling on the ground resulted in into the creation of numerous Andhakasuras. In a short time the battlefield was overcrowded with countless Andhakasuras. Now Shiva’s anger crossed all limits and he thundered loudly. Flames emanated from  the mouth  of enraged  Shiva resulting into  the manifestation  of goddess  ‘Yogishwari’. Similarly, seven more goddesses manifested themselves from different deities- Vaishnavi from lord Vishnu, Brahmi from lord Brahma, Kaumari from Kartikeya, Mahendri from Indra, Yami from Yama, Varahai from lord Varaha and Maheshwari from lord Narayan. All these eight goddesses came to be known as ‘Matrikas’ and lord assigned them the auspicious day for their worship. A devotee who worships these eight matrikas on ashtami is blessed. The use of ‘bael’ (wood-apple) fruit on this day has great significance.


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