And I’d like to tell you a little story about Shankachuda, who was the king of the asuras, and Tulsi. Shankachuda was cursed to become an asura, and Tulsi was also cursed to come down to earth. And they met at Pushkar where Tulsi was doing tapasya. And She said, “I want to go back to Golok and be with Vishnu and Krishna.” And Brahma came to Her and said, “You will go back to Golok and you will marry Vishnu. But first you have karma on the earth and you have to be the partner of Shankachuda, the king of the asuras. And that will fulfill the curse, and you can go back home.”
So Tulsi said, “Alright Brahma, if that is the will of God I’m going to marry Shankachuda.” And she began to do tapasya and recite the mantra waiting for Shankha. And of course one day Shankachuda came up, the king of the asuras. And He saw Tulsi radiant with purity. There is nothing so pure as Tulsi. And She was just radiant, and He looked at Her and said, “Would you be mine?” And She said, “Are you Shankha?” And He said, “Yes.” She said, “OK.”
So the marriage was fixed. It was quite a love affair. And very quickly the purity of Tulsi was Shankha’s protection. And the Gods attacked the asuras, and the asuras began to fight and no one could defeat Shankha because of Tulsi’s purity.
So the Gods went to Vishnu and they said, “Vishnu, Somebody has to help us out, we can’t defeat these asuras, Tulsi is too pure. Because of the purity of Tulsi, we can’t defeat Shankha, and He’s the king of the asuras. So you have to find a way to rob her of her purity.” Vishnu said, “I’m always willing to do the work of the Gods. Because it’s destined that the Gods always will go back to heaven. And the asuras will always relinquish their authority over the earth. Satyam Eva Jayate. Truth will always prevail.”
So the Gods will be victorious and I will do whatever is required. Vishnu took on the form of Shankha. And He went to Tulsi’s place where She was staying and He said, “Hi honey, I’m home from the war, quickly, let’s make love!” And Tulsi had a doubt. But she said, “My husband has come home from so much hardship and facing so many dangers in battle, I must yield to him. As soon as they began their engagement, Tulsi said, “You’re not my husband. Who are you in reality? Why have you come to rob me of my purity? By deceit you’re trying to defeat the asuras? Who are you?”
Vishnu assumed his form with four arms and said, “You prayed for the blessing to marry me, and here I am.” And Tulsi said, “Yes, but not like this, not by deceit. Your deceit has written the death of my husband, and I can’t accept that.” And Vishnu said, “I’m giving you a boon. My worship will never be complete without a Shankha. Shankha, the conch shell will sit at my feet, wherever devotees gather there will always be a conch shell.” And, I’m giving you another boon, “You can be with Shankha all through the day. Every devotee who worships with the conch shell will say, “Om Aim Hrim Klim Srim Vrndavanavasinyai Svaha”, and put some tulsi leaves in to the conch shell. And Tulsi gets to stay in the arms of her lover all through the day. And every night when the worship is complete, the devotees and Pujaris will take that conch shell water and sprinkle it on the heads of all the devotees and then Tulsi will come and stay with Vishnu all night.”
Now how do you like that? Can’t complain about that deal. What a deal! She gets to be with Shankha in the day and Vishnu in the night. So Tulsi accepted.