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Guru Shukracharya, Indian Sage
Guru Shukracharya was a sage who was the descendant of sage Kavi. He belonged to the Atharvan branch.
 In Devi Bhagavata Purana Guru Shukracharya mother is referred to as Kavyamata. He was born on Friday in the year Parthiva on Sraavana Suddha Ashtami. Shukracharya studied the Vedas under rishi Angirasa. However he was disturbed by Angirasa`s favoritism for his son Brihaspati. Thereafter he studied under sage Gautama. Later he performed penance to Lord Shiva and obtained the Sanjivani mantra.

He married Priyavrata`s daughter Urjaswathi. They had four sons: Chanda, Amarka, Tvastr, Dharaatra and a daughter by name Devayani. Brihaspati meanwhile became the preceptor of the Devas. Shukracharya had hatred towards Vishnu. He supposed that his mother was killed by him as she had given shelter to some asura whom Lord Vishnu was hunting. Shukracharya therefore became the Guru of Asuras. He helped them win over the Devas. He used his knowledge to revive the dead and wounded among them.

Once Vamana (incarnation of Lord Vishnu) comes to take the three worlds as alms from the asura king Bali. Lord Vishnu wanted to deceive the king Bali who was the grandson of Prahlada in order to help the Devas. Shukracharya identifies him and warns the King. The King however offers the gift to Vamana. Shukracharya was annoyed with and shrunk himself with his powers and sits in the spurt of the vase. From this water has to be poured in order to seal the promise to the deity in disguise. Lord Vishnu understands immediately and picks a straw from the ground and directs it up the spout thereby poking out the left eye of Shukracharaya. Since this day he is known to be half blind.

His daughter was Devayani who was rejected by the son of Brihaspati, Kacha. She later marries the founder of Kuru dynasty, Yayati.

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(Last Updated on : 10/09/2011)
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