The nine presiding deities - viz., Skanda and others- of the nine diseases of infant life are all possessed of ethereal frames, divine effulgence and specific sex-distinction of their own. They were created by the gods Agni, Mahadeva and the goddesses Krittika and Uma for guarding the person of the new-born Guha though protecting himself with his own divine prowess amidst the stems of S'ara grass. Of these Grahas the females who arc possessed of various shapes as described before are considered as originally made of the Rajasa essence of the goddesses Ganga, Uma and Krittika. 2 A.

The Naigamesha Graha who is possessed of a sheep's face was created by the goddess Parvati as the friend and protector of the young god Guha and who was as dear to him as his own self. Skandapasmara, the presiding deity of the disease named after him, was created by Agni, the fire-god (Vulcan). He is as bright as fire itself and is a constant companion of the god Skanda and is also known by the name of Vis'akha. The god .Skanda, the tutelar divinity of the disease of that denomination, was begotten by His Holiness, the Almighty Destroyer of Tripura and is otherwise known by the name of Kumara (lit. a child, via., of Mahadeva). 2B.

It is impossible that the god springing from Rudra and Agni, with his exalted parentage would find pleasure in such a dangerous disease even out of childish frolicsomeness and it has also been asserted by eminent authorities on the physical science that some unintelligent persons have been misled into holding, through a mistake due to the identity of the names, that the author of the disease under discussion (Skanda) is no other than the invincible Skanda. 2.

On the effulgent god Skanda's being elevated to the leadership of the armies of Heaven, the presiding deities of those diseases waited upon him and with folded palms asked him about the means of their subsistence. The god Skanda in his turn, referred them to His Holiness the god Siva for the answer, whereupon they went to the latter in a body and made the same query. Mahadeva, the Destroyer of Bhaga's eyes, replied "Gods, men and other animals, O, ye Grahas, exist on the principle of reciprocal benefit *. The gods minister to the wants of men and beasts, etc., by marshalling. different seasons of the year and by setting the air in motion and sending down the rain, and men, in their turn, propitiate the gods by duly and reverentially performing the sacrificial rites, by saying their prayers with blended palms, by bowing down in reverence, and by repetition of prayers, religious vows and other religious observances. All services and their emoluments in consequence have been filled up and settled and there remains nothing for you to fill. Your proper means of subsistence will, therefore, be in the life of an infant (though the emoluments you shall receive shall be stained with the tears of many an anxious, watchful and night-worn parent). 3A.

* Exchange or reciprocity of services underlies the foundation of all distinct and cognitive existences, whether beasts, men or gods. The worlds are linked to one another by bonds of service. Give-and-take is the law of the universe. Duty implies obligation.

Children of the families in which the gods, the Pitris (departed fathers), the Brahmans, the pious, the preceptors and the seniors and the guests are not properly worshipped and attended upon and wherein the rules of cleanliness and virtues are not observed and the members of which do not make daily offerings to the gods and give alms to beggars and live on food prepared by others and eat from broken bowls and plates of Indian bell-metal would be the proper persons whom you might .strike with impunity, and by your malign influence lay them up with diseases peculiar to infant life. (It shall be your duty to see that iniquities of the parents are visited on their children. Attack them without least compunction of heart and ample means of subsistence will be thereby secured to you). There the parents of those children will worship you in their calamities and you shall get plenty to live upon." 3B.

Thus the Grahas came into being and began to attack the children (of iniquitious parents), and it is therefore that a child attacked by a malignant Graha becomes very hard to be cured. Death or permanent disfigurement of any limb or organ is sure to ensue from an attack of Skanda Graha, since he is the most dreadful of all the Grahas. A case of full-developed attack by any other Graha should be likewise held as incurable. 3.

Thus ends the thirty-seventh chapter of the Uttara Tantra in the Sub'ruta Samhita which deals with the origin of the Grahas.