Vidyaa Daana Mahima

A person who does Vidyaa-daanam to a satpaatra (deserved one), is considered to be a Shreshtha. Because of such a Vidyaa-daata, 100 Vamshams will be saved. Of the daatas a Vidyaa-pradaata is like Mahaavishnu in Devatas, Shri Mahaalakshmi in strii-jaati.

In the previous Kalpam, there used to be a braahmana by name “Sangira”. He used to do dustarkam with Panditas. Though he didnt have enough gnyaanam he used to have durahankaaram that he was a Gnyaani. He was a Hetuvaadi. He never thought about paramaartham and always tried to do dustarkam and show his greatness.

He used to do Veda-ninda! He used to say Vedas were written by humans!! Similarly Smrutis. He also used to do Puraana-ninda and Itihaasa-parihaasam. Without Lajja and Bhayam he used to take wrong meanings of Sadvishayams and do their duushana. Panditas used to close their ears unable to bear the words of this fellow. In those days, the shiksha for such people was Desha-bahishkaaram, since if he is left, he will spoil the others too. Thus Sangira was pushed out of Bhaarata-desham.

Sangira reached Mleccha-desham. There also he continued his Kutarkam and finally vidhivashah died there only. Reaching Yamalokam, crossing the Vaitaranii-nadi, itself was difficult for this paapi. Finally he reached Yamalokam. Yamadharmaraaja, the Samavarti, ordered that he must experience all the shikshas that were there, since there is no paapa-kaaryam which he didnt do! The klesham Sangira experienced in Naarakam is undescribable. There was no end to these shikshas. Howmuch ever the Yama-kinkaras tortured, Sangira’s paapam was not decreasing. Even the others in the Narakam used to say “he is a mahaa-paapi” (because he was experiencing many new shikshas which they never experienced).

Once, Shataananda, the putra of Gautama maharshi and Ahalyaa Devi, and the Purohita of Janaka maharaja, came there. Being a Dayaardra-hrudaya, he was not able to see the difficulties of the people in the Narakam. He also saw Sangira, due to the small Punyam Sangira did.

Shataananda then did bodha of Shiva-vidya to the people in the Narakam. Just because of Shiva-vidyaa-shravanam, Narakalokam became Naakalokam (Svargam)!! Sangira did pranaamam to Shataananda, the Shiva-vidyaa-pradaata and became a Punyaatma.

Our Shaastras say:

  1. Shilpa-vidyaa-daanam gives Brahmaloka-praapti
  2. Kalaa-vidyaa-daanam gives Vishnuloka-praapti
  3. Aayurveda-vidyaa-daanam gives Ayaachakaloka-praapti
  4. Tarka and Miimaamsa shaastra bodha gives Vaarunaloka-praapti
  5. Dharma-shaastra bodha gives Swargalokam and saves Pitru-devatas from Narakam for 10 Manvantarams
  6. Veda-vidyaa-daanam gives Swargaloka-nivaasam for 3 Kalpams
  7. Aatma-vidyaa-daana phalitam cannot be counted (Sankhyaatiitam)!
  8. Brahma-vidyaa-daanam gives phalam of doing all daanams!!

Vidyaa-daana-phalam is got by following things too: an Upaadhyaaya who makes Vidyaarthis study well, giving Anna-daanam or Vastra-daanam to Vidyaarthis, Grantha-daanam to a satpaatra, organizing puraana-pravachanams by Panditas etc.

Morals in the story:

  1. The greatness of Vidyaa-daanam is well shown in the story. Even a Mahaapaapi like Sangira can be saved by doing Vidyaa-bodha.
  2. Veda, Puraana, Itihaasa duushanam is a Mahaapaapam. We must be very careful to be away from these.
  3. Ahankaaram is the root cause of everything. Due to the Ahankaaram of being a Pandita, Sangira tried to de Kutarkam and show his greatness. Hence we must always have Vinayam.
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Published in: on August 20, 2006 at 10:03 pm  Comments (1)  

Story of Sunandana

Once upon a time, there used to live a sadbraahmana by name Sunandana in Meghankaram. He was a Saaranga-paani Bhakta (Paramashiva bhakta). He used to do archana of Parama Shiva, who was in the form of Saaranga-paani in Meghankaram. Sunandana was a Pandita, Veda-vedaanga nipuna and a Shuddha Brahmachaari. Hence was doing Nitya paaraayana of the 11th Adhyaayam of Shri Bhagavat-gita.

Once he went on a Teertha-yaatra to Kaantaasthali. It is the pavitra-kshetram where there prasiddha-aalayam of Shri Mahaalakshmi. A guide showed Sunandana the pavitra-kshetram and many siddha-pradeshams in it. He also told that the Nadi-jalam is very sweet and the people are good. However he advised Sunandana not to stay for the night and he added that even if he wanted, the villagers will not allow him to stay in the graama-satram.

Sunandana didnt understand why and requested the graama-adhikaari to grant him permission to stay in the satram. Finally Sunandana managed to convince the adhikaari. The adhikaari said “may be you are the person” and unwillingly gave his permission. Sunandana slept in the satram for that night and as usual woke up the next day before Suuryodayam.

However the villagers were awe-struck to see Sunandana alive. They requested Sunandana to give vimukti to Bhimamukha and told his story:

Bhimamukha was an ordinary Karshaka. Once when he was involved in doing his work in the fields near the satram, a Vruddha came there. Unfortunately, a vulture sees the Vruddha, who was not even having enough strength to walk, and attacks him. However Bhimamukha, being capable of saving the Vruddha, doesnt help him, because of being involved in his farming. Seeing this, a Sanyaasi who was passing near-by wanted to teach Bhimamukha a lesson so that no one will repeat such mistakes. He gives Bhimamukha a shaapam that he will become a raakshasa and a Nara-bhakshaka!

The shaapam of Bhimamukha turned out to be a shaapam for the villagers instead, because Bhimamukha was eating away the villagers one-by-one. All the villagers then ask the Sanyaasi for Sharanam. Sanyaasi gives abhayam and says that Bhimamukha will not cross the satram’s boundary and will only eat people who stay there in the night. Also when a Gnyaani who really has knowledge about Bhagavat-vishvaruupam comes, Bhimamukha will get vimukti.

Listening to this, Sunandana gives Vimukti to Bhimamukha and when aksed by Bhimamukha how he got so much Gnyaanam about Bhagavat-vishvaruupam, tells like this: “I used to do paaraayana of 11th Adhyaayam of Bhagavat-gita. Because of that I have gained this Gnyaanam. However since a perfect Brahmachaari, a Veda-vedaanga-tattvagnya and a Shiva-bhakta can only read it, ordinary people can do the smarana of ‘Sthavishthah’ naamam in Vishnu-sahasra-naamam instead and get the same phalam”.

Thus knowing the greatness of Vishnu-sahasra-naamam and in particular, the naamam of ‘sthavishthah’, the villagers and Bhimamukha do Naama-paarayana and get ananta-phalam.

Morals in the story:

  1. We must always do paropakaaram. Being capable of saving the Vruddha, Bhimamukha, being involved in his work, didnt save him. As told by this Sanyaasi, this is very bad.
  2. The greatness of Vishnu Sahasra naamam is well shown in the story. It is our adrushtam, that Bheeshma-aachraya and Veda Vyaasa gave us this ananta-nidhi. Especially in Kaliyugam Naama-sankeertanam is the easiest way for Mukti.
Published in: on August 19, 2006 at 9:31 pm  Comments Off on Story of Sunandana  

Shri Gautama maharshi -1

Gautama maharshi is one of the Brahma-maanasa-putras and is one of the great Saptarishis. Gautama maharshi is a mantra-drashta and gave us the famous “Gautama Smruti” in which he showed us many Dharma-sutras. Proving the Shodasha (16) Padaarthas like Pratignya, Hetu, Udaaharana, he wrote a Nyaayashaastram too. He gave us the Jyotishshaastra Grantham by the name “Gautama Samhita”. Sitadevi’s gotram is Gautama gotram only!

Once Brahmadeva did srushti of Ahalya (Na halyati iti Ahalya. She lacked nothing). She was a divya Soundarya Murty. Brahmadeva wondered who derserved to be the Bharta of this apuurva Gunavati. He decided that a person with Akhanda Teevra Brahmacharya Nishtha and Nigraham can only be her Bharta and saw that Gautama maharshi was the one. He decided to test the Indriya Nigraham of Gautama maharshi. He came to Gautama maharshi’s aashramam and said “she is Ahalya. I will leave her in your aashramam. I will come back after some time”. Many years passed and since Gautama maharshi was a Samyami and his manas was always with Brahma (hence a Brahmachaari), he never even had faint skhalanam seeing Ahalya. Gautama maharshi, the parama Shiva Bhakta, easily passed the test of Brahmadeva. Brahmadeva then did Kalyaanam of Gautama maharshi and Ahalya. Their’s was an aadarsha daapatyam. They lived in Brahmagiri, which is in Dakshina-Bhaaratam.

Unlike modern technology, which tries to exploit Nature, our Bhaarateeya Vignyaanam explians ways how to use Nature without disturbing the Nature’s eco-system. Combining Bhautika Vignyaanam and Aadhyaatmika Vignyaanam is the speciality of Bhaarateeya maharshis. Gautama maharshi was a master of Bhuu, Jala, Vyavasaaya Shastras. Gautama maharshi, once for Kshaama-nivaaranam did Tapas for Varunadeva and made a reservoir filled with Akshayajalam. Shiva Puraanam tells that with this Jalam, many lands become fertile: (here goes the story)

Once a Kshaamam came and life of people became difficult. Except Yogis everyone was running for their life. Gautama maharishi, who had karuna-svabhaavam, was not able to see the difficulties of the people. He decided to do Tapas for Varunadeva to ask him from rain. Varunadeva appeared and said “this is Kaala-niyamam. I cannot go against it. Kaala-karta, Parameshvara, only controls Pancha-bhuutas and Grahas. Doing anusandhaanam of Punya-Paapas of people, using Us, Parama Shiva controls Nature (Aadi Shakti). According to this I must not rain now. Ask Me anything else”. Gautama maharshi, who had loka-shreyas in mind, asked Varunadeva “if You are really satisfied with my Tapas, give me Akshajalam. Other than that I dont need anything”. Varunadeva replied “Gautama! I must give phalitam to your Tapas. I am bound to My Mantram. You dig a reservoir and I will put Akshyajalam in it. Dayaalu like you will do only Praja-kshemam. Jayostu”. Thus Gautama maharshi saved many people. Aadhaaram to this Prapancham are four: “a person who has Bhuutadaya, a person who has no garvam, a person who has upakaara-buddhi, a person who has Indriya Nigraham”.

The seva that Gautama maharshi did to Dakshina Bhaaratam and in particular to Aandra Pradesh is also memorable. Using his Vyavasaaya Shaastram and Godaavari he turned this land fertile. (We will see this story in detail in Shri Gautama maharshi -2). He also changed the course of Krishnaa-nadii-jalam, using his Tapas-shakti, and made still many more lands fertile.

Atithi-seva and Praja-sankshemam were the important Dharmas which Gautama maharshi showed us. One Sajjana/Dushta is enough to save/destroy a whole Vamsham. Many maharshi’s in Gautama maharshi’s Vamsham are Mantra-drashtas. Gautama maharshi and Ahalya’s putra was Shataananda, the Purohita of Janaka maharaja.

Gautama maharshi after making one place fertile used to shift to the next place. Like this many maharshis bless the place with their Tapas and move on. The aashramams used by such Divya-rushis later become Siddha-aashramams. Aditi and Kashyapa maharshi did Tapas for Mahaavishnu in Gautama maharshi’s aashramam and got Mahaavishnu as their child. Mahaavishnu was born to them as Vaamana, Shri Raama and Shri Krishna. (Kaushalya, Dasharatha; and Devaki-Vasudeva are Aditi, Kashyapa only)

Morals in the Story:

  1. Bhaarateeya Vignyaanam was always respecting the Nature, not destroying it. The importance they gave to Agriculture etc. is well shown in this story.
  2. The greatness of Samyamam, Brahmacharyam are well shown by Gautama maharshi.
  3. The paropakaara buddhi and Bhuutadaya of Gautama maharshi are well shown in the story.
  4. The greatness of Siddha-aashramams and Divya Kshetras is shown in the story. We are indeed very very lucky to be born in this Bhaarata Desham, where there are countless number of Punya-kshetras. “Mera Bhaarat Mahaan“.

Search Terms: Gauthama, Gowthama, Gouthama, Goutama, Gowtama, Indra

Published in: on July 26, 2006 at 6:21 pm  Comments (3)  

Vikrasena, the King of Ujjaini

Vikrasena maharaaja used to rule Ujjaini. He was a Dhanurvidya-praavinya and a great Veera. He was a great Bhakta of Kaalikaa devi. He used to get dreams (unusual) frequently. He used to feel that they are not ordinary dreams, but sanketas from Ujjaini Mahankaali. His enthusiam to know the meaning behind his dreams increased day by day.

Once he got this dream: he was walking in a forest and a red fox was walking around him. He wanted to know the meaning of this dream. He announced that whoever tells the correct meaning of the dream will be given a reward of 10000 varahas. Though they were many Panditas in Ujjaini, none dared to explain to the King. There was a vartaka by name Pinnishetty who had Kapatam and learned a lot of wealth. In his thirst for more wealth, he did many wrong things too. He thought he must somehow get the 10000 varahas reward announced by the King and started searching for Panditas. Finally he found a Pandita who was in Pinnishetty’s view an easy person to cheat. However the Pandita with his nitya-saadhana and satva gunam gained a lot of Paandityam in Jyotishshaastram. Pinnishetty asked the meaning of the King’s dream and thought of attracting the Pandita by telling that he will get reward of 10000 varahas. However the Pandita shocked seeing the danger that is going to come to the King, Vikrasena said “The king is in a very great danger. In his kingdom there is a lot of aviniiti (bribery etc.). He must control it”. Pinnishetty told the same to the King, took the reward and never even showed his face to the Pandita again.

However the Pandita did not even have faint Pralobham. He was very happy that the King listened to him and stopped all the aviniiti kaaryas. After sometime the King got one more dream. He saw a sword getting burnt in fire. He called Pinnishetty and asked him the meaning. A dushta leaves all maanaabhimaanas. He shamelessly went to the Pandita, told him that in some busy work he was not able to meet him and asked him the meaning of the dream. This time he didnt even mention that the reward is 20000 varahas.

Pandita got alerted on listening to the dream and said “There is a danger for the King and the Kingdom from the enemy Kings. Please warn him”. Pinnishetty told the meaning to Vikrasena and took the reward. The Pandita was happy seeing that the King defeated his enemies and protected his country.

After some time, the King got another dream: He saw divya saravoram, with Hamsas, Kamalas etc. Again Pinnishetty carried the news to the Pandita. Pandita had Paramaanandam and said “The Desham and the Raja are now pure. “Yathaa Raaja Tathaa Praja”. So please convey my Shatakoti Pranaamas to the King. He is a Dharmaatma”. Before the tejas of the Pandita, the durgunam of Pinnishetty melted away. On one side there was the great King and on the other the great Pandita. He became puniita by the pavitra Ganga jalas that flowed from these two Himavat-Parvatas, the King and the Pandita. Later Pinnishetty spent all his dhanam for Desha-shreyam and earned kiirti as huge as Himavat-Parvatam.

Morals in the story:

  1. Since the King was a Dharmaatma, Kaalikaa devi gave sanketas to the King. God always protects the sajjanas.
  2. Pandita used his divya Jyotishya vidya, which he earned through nishtha and niyamam, to save his Desham and his Raja. He didnt misuse it to earn money or kiirti or other such things. It is well known that such Divya vidyas must not be used for anybody’s personal benifits; but only for the benefit of the society.
  3. Sat-saangatyam is very important. This is once again showed in this short story. Even a durjana can be changed due to the company of Sajjanas.
Published in: on July 15, 2006 at 7:18 pm  Comments (1)  

Story of Yavakriita

Bharadvaaja maharshi and Raibhya maharshi were very good friends. They always used to wake up well before Suryodayam, take nadi-snaanam after kaala-krutyas, do their aahnikas and do Parabrahma-dhyaanam with nirmala chittam. Their only aahaaram was fruits from the forest. Yavakriita and Arvaavasu, Paraavasu were the santaanam of Bharadvaaja and Raibhya maharshis respectively.

Bharadvaaja maharshi was always in Dhyaana-samadhi and hence did not take care about Yavakriita’s Vidyaabhyaasam. However Raibhya maharshi made Arvaavasu and Paraavasu great Vidvans. Both of them travelled many places, spread their knowledge and earned great fame. Yavakriita had vichaaram and he also wanted to earn great name by doing Vidyaabhyaasam. He immediately started tapas with teevra-nishtha.

Devendra, seeing the nishtha of Yavakriita, appeared and said “Vidya must always be learnt through a Guru. Adhyayanam is very important. This is the only way for really earning Veda, Vedanga Vignyanam. Please stop this tapas and approach a sat-Guru”. Yavakriita did not like the hita-bodha from Devendra and continued his tapas. In order to change the mind of Yavakriita, Devendra came in the form of a Vruddha brahmana. He was taking sand in his hand and throwing into the Nadi. Yavakriita, who came for Nadi-snaanam, saw the brahmana and asked him why he was doing it. The Vruddha brahmana replied that he was trying to build a wall across the river. Yavakriita laughed and said “with such small amounts of sand will you be able to complete the wall in your life time?” The Vruddha replied “O kumara! This is not more foolish than thinking of learning Veda-Vidya without doing Guruseva”. Yavakriita again pleaded Devendra to bless him with Veda-Vidya. Devendra finally, thinking that there is no use of doing hita-bodha to him, gave Vidya anugraham.

Yavakriita became a Sarva-shastra-Veda-Vidya Vignyaani. He immediately stopped his tapas, returned to his father and explained him what happened. Bharadvaaja maharshi replied “O kumara! Vidya earned in such a way will give only ahankaram. Ahankar is Aatma-naashana-kaaranam. Now listen to this word of mine: never go near the Ashramam of Raibhya maharshi. Never also get into an argument with Arvaavasu and Paraavasu.”

Yavakriita also went to Desha-deshaantaras. Once in Vasanta-maasam, when forest was very beautiful and everywhere there was parimalam from the pushpas, Yavakriita went near Raibhya maharshi’s Ashramam and saw that Raibhya’s snusha (daughter-in-law) was alone. Since he had not learnt Vidya in a proper way he did not have his Indriyas in his control and did balaatkaaram of Raibhya maharshi’s snusha. Learning what happened, Raibhya maharshi with teevra-krodham, took two jatas from his hair and created a Sundarangi and a Rakshasa. They approached Yavakriita. The Sundarangi attracted Yavakriita and took away the pavitra kamadalam from him. With that all his shakti was lost. Later the Rakshasa with a Shuulam did samhaaram of Yavakriita.

Seeing this Bharadvaaja maharshi said “Kamara! You always wanted to learn Vidya in an easy way and did not listen to me when I said that this will lead to anarthas.” Bharadvaaja maharshi, in the duhkham of loosing Yavakriita, gave shaapam to Raibhya maharshi and did praana-tyaagam. Raibhya maharshi also left his life in the hands of Arvaavasu. However Arvaavasu then did Upaasana of Surya-bhagavan and brought back the life of Raibhya maharshi, Bharadvaaja maharshi and Yavakriita.

Yavakriita then asked the Devatas, who appeared before them, why he had less shakti than Raibhya maharshi; though he was a Veda-vetta. The Devatas replied “O kumara! He learned the Veda-Vidya by doing Guruseva, but you did it without it. Vidya must always be learnt through a sat-Guru“.

Search Terms: Yavakrita, Yavakreeta, Yavakritha, Bharadvaja, Bharadwaja, Indra, Arvavasu, Puravasu

Published in: on July 14, 2006 at 5:53 pm  Comments Off on Story of Yavakriita  

The story of the great Shibi chakravarti

Shibi chakravati was the son of Ushiinara maharaja. Shibi was a maha-daata and his daanam gunam was praised by many in the 14 bhuvanas. Devendra and Agnideva once wanted to test the greatness of Shibi’s daana gunam. Agnideva took the form of a Kapotam (pigeon). Devendra took that of a Grudhra (vulture).

The Kapotam, which was chased by the Grudhra, came to Shibi chakravarti’s sabha and pleaded “Sharanam, Sharanam O maharaja!”. Seeing this, a Raja-purohita said “Maharaja! With praana-bhayam this Kapotam came to your sharanam. Every jeevi has praana-preeti. Also there is no greater uttama-karma than Praana-rakshana. However we know that giving aashrayam to a Kapotam is a mrutyu-suuchakam. Hence prayashchittam will be necessary”.

Kapotam replied “Maharaja! Afraid of the Grudhra I have asked you sharanam. Actually I am a mahamuni, now in this rupam. Vedas say that a raja must protect the diina and asamartha”. The Grudhra, which reached the sabha by then, said “Maharaja! Every jeevi takes many forms. This jeevi came to your sharanam in the Kapota rupam. Dont forget that Kapotam is aahaaram for a Grudhra. Please leave this Kapotam, which is my aahaaram, and save my life”.

Shibi chakravarti thought “In a Desham ruled by a king who does not give abhayam to a sharanaarthi who has praana-bhayam, there will be no rains, no crops and it will be the nilayam for Kshaama-devata. Also the people will have to face many difficulties and finally such king will reach narakam.

However, the Grudhra is with hunger and has put in a lot of effort chasing its aahaaram. Taking away food from its mouth is also a paapa-karyam. Now what should I do?”.

Shibi: O Grudhra! I will give you a better, tastier aahaaram than this. Please leave this Kapotam.

Grudhra: Maharaja! No other thing can be tastier than this maamsam. It was decided by Brahmadeva that they are aahaaram for us.

Shibi: O Grudhra! I cannot leave this Kapotam that is in my sharanam and do Dharma-haani. I am also ready to leave my life to save that of the Kapotam. All lokas also know this. You ask me whatever you want except this.

Grudhra: Maharaja! If you are really such a dayaamaya, give me the maamsam from your right thigh which is equal in weight to that of the Kapotam.

Immediately Shibi chakravarti got a balance and kept the Kapotam on one side and started to cut his thigh and weigh it. Howmuch ever he cut it was not enough. He tried cutting maamsam from his right thigh, then he himself sat on the balance. Grudhra said “enough. I am going” and went away. Seeing this Shibi chakravarti asked “O Kapotama! Who are you? What is your story?”

“Maharaja! I am Agnihotra. This Grudhra is Devendra, We came to test your Sharanaagata-rakshana, Daana-shakti. You qualified it. Your keerti will spread to Bhuvana-bhuvanaantaras. Your son will also keep your name” said the Kapotam and flew away.

Because Shibi did his shariira Daanam to save the life of a sharanaagati, we now also remember him. Whenever people talk about maha-daatas, his name will surely be taken.

Morals in the story:

  1. The Daana-gunam and Dharma-rakshana of Shibi must be learnt by all of us.
  2. The knowledge of the Dharma-shastras helped Shibi decide what to do in the difficult situation.

Search terms: Sibi, Pigeon, Eagle, Ushinara, Indra, Agni

Published in: on July 11, 2006 at 6:38 pm  Comments (31)  

Greatness of Vidyābhyāsam

Devatas and daityas always have fights among themselves. The daitya's Guru is Śukrācārya. He knew the vidya of mṛtasanjīvanī, which he obtained through a long tapas for Parameśvara. Using this vidya, Śukrācārya used to bring back the dead daityas to life and save them. However the Devatas neither knew the vidya nor had amṛtam, because this story happened before the Kṣhīra sāgara mathanam. The Devatas asked their Guru, Bṛhaspati, for help. Bṛhaspati asked his son, Kaca, to become a śiṣhya of Śukrācārya, do Guru seva with utmost care, learn all the śāstras etc. and the mṛtasanjīvanī vidya from Sukrācārya. Kaca immediately followed the instructions of his father and reached the āśram of Śukrācārya.

He did sāṣhṭāṅga namaskāram to Śukrācārya and said "O Gurudeva! I am from the Āṅgīrasa gotram and the son of Bṛhaspati, the Guru of the Devatas. People call me by the name Kaca. I came to you as a vidyārthi". Śukrācārya happily agreed to have the son of the great Bṛhaspati as his śiṣhya. Everday Kaca used to wake up before the Sun, and do Sandhyāvandanādi āhnikas, after his kāla-kṛtyas. He used to be very obdient to his Guru and learn his vidyas with utmost concentration and respect. He never let any attractions, diviations to enter his mind and always concentrated on Guru seva and his vidyābhyāsam.

Śukrācārya had a very beautiful daughter by name Devayānī. She was very young and had a lot of prema for Kaca. She tried to express herself many times to Kaca, but Kaca never had anything in his mind except his vidyābhyāsam. Also since Devayānī was the daughter of his Guru, who is equal to his father, he had sodarī-bhāvam on Devayānī. Slowly Kaca, due to his unparalleled efforts and vinayam became the favourite śiṣhya of Śukrācārya. This could not be tolerated by the daityas who were burning with īrṣha. Also they were afraid that Kaca would soon learn Mṛtasanjīvanī vidya from Śukrācārya and later it would be difficult for them to face the Devatas.

Once Kaca went to the forest as his Guru's gopālaka. As the Sun was setting the power of daityas increased. They attacked Kaca and killed him. Devayāni was waiting for Kaca in the āśram. She told her father, "everyday by the time for sāyam-sandhyāvandanam, Kaca returns home. Somehow he did not return today. O father! please see if he is ok." Śukrācārya with his divya-dṛṣhṭi saw what happened to Kaca and immediately brought him back to life. The daityas īrṣha increased with this and this time they planned to kill Kaca in such a way that it will be difficult for Śukrācārya to save him. They killed Kaca, burnt him and mixed his ashes in surāpānam and served it to their Guru. Śukrācārya drank the surāpānam. Seeing Kaca not returning home, again Devayāni asked her father. Śukrācārya was shocked to know what mistake he committed unknowingly. He thought "a man who is under the influence of surā-pānam will loose all his distinction of good and bad, does not think and can do any great pāpa-kāryam". Once the pāpa-karyam is done, for normal humans, it is impossible to undo it. Śukrācārya thought that if he was not under the influence of surāpānam, he could have easily identified, with his tapobalam, that Kaca's ashes were mixed in his surāpānam. So he made a firm rule that surāpānam, in what ever small quantītes, is mahāpāpam and it must never be drunk.

He used his Mṛtasanjīvanī vidya and brought back Kaca to life. However Kaca remained in Śukrācārya's stomach in a sūkṣhma rūpam. Śukrācārya then taught Kaca Mṛtasanjīvanī vidya and asked him to come out of him, by tearing his stomach. Kaca came out of Śukrācārya and then used the Mṛtasanjīvanī vidya to bring back the life of his Guru. Kaca, after the completion of his vidyābhyāsam, took the anujña of Śukrācārya and was planning to leave. Devayāni then told Kaca "Please do not leave me and go. Marry me". Kaca said "you are like a sister to me, since a Guru is equal to one's father". Devayāni got angry with Kaca and said "Since you rejected my love and pained me, your vidya will not be of any use to you". Kaca was not sad because he knew though his Vidya will not be directly useful to him, he can spread his vidya to others and thereby become useful to the society. Vidya dhanam is the only dhanam that can never be destroyed and robbed. The more and more it is given to others, the more and more it grows…

Morals in the story:

  1. The importance and greatness of Vidya is well shown in the story.
  2. Though Devatas and daityas were enemies, Kaca never tried to conceal his identity, since he knew by cheating a Guru vidya cannot be acquired. Also Śukrācārya, knowing who Kaca was, accepted him as śiṣhya, because a deserved one must always be taught.
  3. Vinayam and kṛṣhi are were important for vidyābhyāsam. Kaca was never involved in any other activity than his Guru seva and studies.
  4. One must never have jealousy. Because of jealousy that Kaca is performing better than them, the daityas did not think what is right and what is wrong.
  5. Surāpānam, in what ever small quantites, must not be done. This is well shown through Śukrācārya's words.
  6. The knowledge of Kaca helped him decide whether to accept Devayāni's love or not.

Search Terms: Kacha, Devayani, Shukracharya, vidyabhyasam, sanjeevani

Published in: on June 14, 2006 at 9:22 pm  Comments (10)  

Following Dharma always

Doing right always is a very difficult task. Many a times we do not know what is dharma, what is not. Even though we know, unless it is a very usual habit of following it, at times of great stress it is impossible to follow the path of Dharma. The following story is a small example illustrating Shri DharmaRaaja’s character, who never deviated from the path of dharma.

One day, near the end of 12 strenuous years of vanavaasam of pandavas, a deer rubbing its head against the samidhas of a brahmana, by mistake carries it away and runs into the deep jungle. The brahmana, knowing that the samidhas were carried away by deer, cried for help. Without them he cannot perform yagnyas. On listening to the cries, immediately pandavas set out for them. They all run deep into the jungle but loose track of the maaya deer.

After a very long chase, with great thirst, they sit under a banyan tree with despair and wonder the reason for not being able to render even a trifling service to the brahmana. Yidhishtara to divert their thinking, asks Nakula to bring him some water. Nakula, who was suffering with very strong thirst, hurriedly wanted to drink water from the pond. An Yaksha’s voice from the pond said “Do not be rash. This pool belongs to me. O son of madri, answer my questions and then drink the water”. In his extreme thirst Nakula continues to drink water and falls dead. Rest of the pandavas follow nakula and fall dead, except Dharmaraaja.

Dharmaraaja instead starts answering the questions of the Yaksha. He, with great ease, answers all the questions of the yaksha. Pleased with dharmaraaja, the Yaksha grants him a boon. Dharmaraaja did not ask the lives of any of his brothers, instead he asked the yaksha to return the samidhas of the brahmana! Impressed by the character of dharmaraaja, the yaksha grants him another boon: “One of your dead brothers can now be revived. Whom do you want to revive?”. Yidhishtira asks for the life of Nakula, after thinking for a while. The yaksha asks him: “Bhima has the strength of 16000 elephants and is the most dearest to you. Arjuna, whose prowess in arms is your protection, is the greatest warrior. Why do you choose Nakula instead?” . Dharmaraaja replied: “O Yaksha, dharma is the only shield of man and not Bhima or Arjuna. If dharma is set at naught, man will be ruined. Kunti and Madri were the two wives of my father. I am surviving, a son of Kunti, and so, she is not completely bereaved. In order that the scales of justice may be even, I ask that Madri’s son Nakula may revive.” The Yaksha was pleased with Yudhishthira’s impartiality and granted that all his brothers would come back to life. The yaksha was none other than Lord Yama. He also blesses him saying that the agnyaatavaasam will go on fine.

(SEE THIS IMAGE)

Morals in the Story:

  1. Importance of sticking to the path of dharma, even in times of difficulty. Samavartitvam (impartiality) is well shown by Dharmaraaja. Even though his own brothers were lying dead before him, he asked for the Samidhas of the Braahmana instead of asking for his brother’s lives!
  2. Gaining the knowledge of dharma, without which dharmaraaja could not have answered the questions of the Yaksha.
  3. Self control and never loosing hope even at times of difficulty. This was very well displayed by dharmaraaja.
Published in: on May 15, 2006 at 6:52 am  Comments (6)  
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