tasya drgbhyo ’bhavat putrah
somo ’mrtamayah kila
brahmana kalpitah patih
tasya—of him, Atri, the son of Brahma; drgbhyah—from the tears of jubilation from the eyes; abhavat—was born; putrah—a son; somah—the moon-god; amrta-mayah—full of soothing rays; kila—indeed; vipra—of the brahmanas; osadhi—of the drugs; udu-gananam—and of the luminaries; brahmana—by Lord Brahma; kalpitah—was appointed or designated; patih—the supreme director.
From Atri’s tears of jubilation was born a son named Soma, the moon, who was full of soothing rays. Lord Brahma appointed him the director of the brahmanas, drugs and luminaries.
According to the Vedic description, Soma, the moon-god, was born from the mind of the Supreme Personality of Godhead (candrama manaso jatah). But here we find that Soma was born from the tears in the eyes of Atri. This appears contradictory to the Vedic information, but actually it is not, for this birth of the moon is understood to have taken place in another millennium. When tears appear in the eyes because of jubilation, the tears are soothing. Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura says, drgbhya anandasrubhya ata evamrtamayah: “Here the word drgbhyah means ‘from tears of jubilation.’ Therefore the moon-god is called amrtamayah, ‘full of soothing rays.’ ” In the Fourth Canto of Srimad-Bhagavatam (4.1.15) we find this verse:
This verse describes that Anasuya, the wife of Atri Rsi, bore three sons—Soma, Durvasa and Dattatreya. It is said that at the time of conception Anasuya was impregnated by the tears of Atri.
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