All of us know who is Durga and how she kills the demon called Mahishasura.
But who is Mahishasura?
Once upon a time there were two demons by the name of Ramba and Karamba who were the sons of the demon Danu. They decided to undertake penance and so Karamba entered in water and Ramba entered in fire. Seeing the severity of the penance, Indra (the king of gods) felt insecure and decided to eliminate them before they could become a threat. Indra took the form of a crocodile and killed Karamba who was in the water. Seeing his brother dead, Ramba got scared and decided to commit suicide before Indra reached him.
Seeing the plight of Ramba, Lord Agni stopped him and granted him a boon. Ramba asked for a son, who could never be killed by a mortal or an immortal. Agni granted him the boon. On his way back, Ramba saw a beautiful demoness who was in the form a buffalo. He fell in love with her and took her home. At night when they were making love a buffalo charged in and killed Ramba. The grief-stricken demoness decided to kill herself and jumped onto the funeral pyre of Ramba.
But the boon of Agni could not be wasted, so from the funeral fire was born a child who was later known as Mahishasura – the buffalo demon.
Ramba’s relatives brought up Mahishasura to be their king. When Mahishasura grew up, he undertook a severe penance and pleased Lord Brahma. On Lord Brahma’s asking he got a boon from him that no man could kill him. At that point of time, it had never occurred to him that a woman could even think of killing him. Having got the boon, Mahishasura became a threat to the gods, till the gods invoked their energy to create a female principle in the form of Devi Durga to kill him after a violent nine day battle.
This is the story of Mahishasura – the buffalo demon.
The above is a statue of Mahishasura at Chamundi Hills in Mysore