Shiva, Parvati And The Bull
Once lord shiva and his consort, Parvati, were travelling with their vehicle - the Bull. The Lord had taken the form of an old man, while, Parvatiji remained young and beautiful. On the road all passers-by looked on with amazement at this odd couple of an old man and a young woman.
On the way, Shiva said, ''Parvatiji, my dear, please sit and ride on the bull durig this journey.'' She obeyed and mounted the bull while Shiva walked alongside. The village folk and other strangers bitterly criticised, ''What a selfish woman! She is young and healthy and yet she chooses to comfortably ride while forcing the old man to walk.'' Shiva changed his mind. ''Parvatidevi, the people are mocking you. It is wiser that I sit and you walk.'' So saying, Shiva sat on the bull's back. Further along, other strangers came with sharper comments, ''O look at this mean, bully of a man. He's fat and robust, and evil too. He enjoys the ride while forcing this young and gentle lady to walk on foot.''
Hearing this both of them climbed the bull. At least, this would ward off the criticisms. But they were gravely mistaken and no sooner had they come to the next village, people sneered and jeered. ''Look at this nasty couple. Both of them have mercilessly climbed upon the bull. They'll kill the poor creature!''
Now there was only one option left. They dismounted and allowed the bull to walk freely. They accompanied it on either side. While they walked, they met new people with new bitterness. They laughed at them, shouting ''What foolishness! They have taken a bull as a vehicle and neither of them is using it.'' Straight away Shiva told Parvati, ''Come let us do what we think is right, and live the way we want to. The world will never appreciate or see what we do as correct.''
In this world, even if we perform a good deed not everyone will like it and support it. The problem lies with the nature of our world. If a Sadhu shows miracles people say, ''He's into black magic and possesses evil powers.'' And if a Sadhu avoids miracles, some will mutter complaints, ''O! He shows no miracles. He's ordinary and is of no use.'' This is the line of thinking our world works on. It is crooked from both ends and whatever you do, the world will never see you straight. Therefore, pay no attention to the words of the worldly people and continue to devoutly worship God.
Shiva and Parvati
The king of the Himalayas, Himavantha and his wife, Menadevi were devotees of Shiva. They wanted a daughter who would grow up to be the wife of Shiva. So Menadevi performed tapasya to please Gauridevi, wife of Shiva. She sat and prayed for days on end, without any food and water. Pleased, Gauridevi promised to be born as Menadevi's daughter.
Menadevi's daughter was named Parvati. The first word that she uttered was 'Shiva.' She grew up to be a beautiful woman. Meanwhile, Shiva who was very sad at the death of his wife had started a long meditation. Himavantha was worried that Shiva would not accept Parvati as his wife as he was in deep meditation and requested Narada to solve his problem. Narada told him that Parvati could win Shiva over through prayers. So Himavantha sent Parvati to the place where Shiva was meditating. Day and night Parvati worshipped and served Shiva.
Though pleased with her devotion, Shiva decided to test her. He designed himself as a young Brahmin and told Parvati that would it be good for her to marry Shiva who lived like a beggar and had nothing. Parvati got very angry when she heard these words about Shiva. She told him that she would marry no one but Shiva. Pleased with heranswer Shiva came back to his real form and agreed to marry Parvati. Himavantha performed the wedding with great splendour.