This story appears in the Shalya parva of the Mahabharath when Janamejaya asks about the significance of Saraswati and the thirtha Sapta Saraswat. King Mankanaka, bon to Vayu and Sukanya, was pierced in his hand by a blade of kusa grass (holy grass). A vegetable liquid oozed out of his finger instead of blood. Excited about this miraculous occurrence, Mankanaka started to dance with joy. His enery was so overwhelming that all being, animate and inanimate began to dance with him. Unable to bear this energy, the God approached Lord Shiva, Mahadeva who was the greatest dancer. With the view of helping the Gods, Shiva asked Mankanaka the reason for his joy. Mankanaka showed the vegetable juice coming out of his fingers. Mahadeva told the king that this was no miracle and showed His own hand. Snow white ashes came out of Mahadeva’s fingers. With his ego severly punctured and humbled by Shiva, the king bowed down and prayed that he may be forgiven. He praised Mahadeva about his omni presence and surrendered to Him. Mahadeva blessed that those that would take bath in the Saraswat will attain a region in the heaven by the same name.
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