Shri Raama — Rakshitaa-svasyadharmasya

(Part of this series of stories. 12th Sadgunam)

This series of stories on Shri Raama Chandra Murty try to showcase the 16 important sadgunas or the Shodasha-kalas in Shri Raama.

(This story has great Aadhyaatma-tattvam. Here we present a short version in morals perspective)

On Chitrakuuta-parvatam, Shri Raama, Seeta Devi and Lakshmana used to stay in Siddha-aashramas of maharshis. One day Shri Raama ans Seeta Devi did Vana-vihaaram and Jala-kreeda. Shri Raama, who was tired, slept in the lap of Jaganmaata, Jaanaki. Then a Vaayasam (crow), by name Kaakaasura, came there and started hurting Janaka-nandini with its beak and nails. Kshmaa-suta, with great sahanam, took the pain and didnt disturb the sleep of Shri Raama and showed Her paati-vratyam. The blood of Seeta devi then fell on Shri Raama. Shri Raama got great Krodham on the one who hurted His Arthaangi and since he didnt have any shastra-astras, took a grass-shoot and used it as Brahma-astram with His Mantra-shakti.

The Vaayasam ran for there for its life. It was not an ordinary Vaayasam, it was the putra of Devendra and had Divya-shakti. But who can save anyone for Shri Raama baanam? It ran to all Tri-jagas. It pleaded the Devatas to protect, it asked Devendra. But everone said there are helpless. After it searched a lot for someone to protect it, it realized than none other than Purushottama, Shri Raama Chandra Himself can protect it and approached Him and asked for Sharanaagati.

Shri Raama Chandra has a vratam that even if a Shatru, apakaari comes and asks for Sharanam, then He will protect him from everything (See this too). Shri Raama, the Sharanaagata-vatsala then gave Abhayam to Kaakaasura. However since Shri Raama baanam is amogham, Shri Raama asked Kaakasura to show Him something on which the Brahmaastram must act. Then Kaakaasura asked the Brahmaastram to take its right-eye.

Discussion of the story:

The prathama-kartavyam of a Bharta, is to protect his Bhaarya. Though Shri Raama didnt have any weapons, as soon as He knew that His Bhaarya was pained by Kaakaasura, He used a grass-shoot as an astram and taught the Kaakaasura a lesson. This shows that in any circumstances Shri Raama was able to do Rakshana of His Dharma-patni. The same mistake of causing grief to Seeta Devi was also done by Raavana; but Shri Raama following His Sharanaagati-dharmam protected Kaakaasura when he came to Shri Raama’s aashrayam. However Raavana never realized his mistake and hence was destroyed (with the same Brahmaastram!).

Hence the episodes of Kaakaasura and Raavana-vadha clearly show that Shri Raama had enough Shakti, Yukti for doing Rakshana of His Svadharmam in any circumstances.

Other Divya-gunas of Shri Raama to be learnt from the story:

  1. Shri Raama’s Veeratvam, Shakti and Astra-vidya are well shown in the story. Even though He was sleeping, didnt have any shastras near Him, with His Mantra-shakti, He could do dushta-shikshana.
  2. “Kaalaagni sadrusha Krodhe Kshamayaa Pruthivii samah”. He is like Kaalaagni when He does dushta-sikshana and is like Bhuu-devi when it comes to Kshama. Kaakaasura, though he did a mistake, realized and asked Shri Raama for sharanam and saved Himself.

Search Terms: Rama, Sita, Kakasura, Kaka, Kaaka, Vaayasam, Ravana

Published in: on September 5, 2006 at 11:59 pm  Comments (1)  

Ghosha Yaatra

One who tries to spoil others will himself get spoilt. This was very true in case of Duryodhana. Right from childhood Duryodhana, Dusshaasana, Karna and Shakuni (Dushtachatushtayam) tried to harm the Paandavas in many many ways. This episode happened during the Vanavaasam of the Paandavas.

Once Duryodhana, who didnt want to let Paandavas live peacefully even in their vanavaasam, asked his guudhachaari to inform himself about the whereabouts, dina-charya etc. of the Paandavas. The guudhachaaris performed their duty and reported like this:

“Arya! According to your aagnya we searched all forests. We enquired all the things you asked for. Dharmaraaja is doing many Yaagas, Vratas. Currently he is doing a Divya Yaagam by name ‘Sadyaskadam’, with the help of Munis”. Listening to this news Duryodhana got Mati-bhramanam. He thought if we let these Paandavas continue to do such Yaagas, Vratas and get many siddhis then it will be still more difficult to kill them. He wanted to destroy the Yaagam somehow. Since it was already late, all of them started to the forests immediately. Duryodhana told the Kuru-kula-vruddhas like Bheeshmaacharya, Dronaachaarya that they were going for Ghosha-Yaatra (and told nothing about disturbing the Paandavas). In Ghosha-Yaatra, the King goes to see the Yoga-kshemam of the Gomaatas in his Raajyam. They telling that it is Ghosha-Yaatra, instead of going to Go-shaalas, reached the forests and tried to camp near the place where Paandavas were doing the Yaagam.

Duryodhana ordered to put tents around the Sarovaram (that was near by). Immediately Gandharva-veeras appeared and said like this “O muurkha-maanavas! This area in currently under the control of the Gandharva-Raaja Chitrasena (Chitrasena was the Gandharva who taught Arjuna Naatyam, when he went to Indra-lokam). No one must(can) enter this. Please go away. Else we will kill you”. The ahankaari, Duryodhana, didnt like these words. He ordered his sainyam to occupy by force. Immediately many many Gandharva-veeras came there and a big Yuddham started between Gandharvas and Duryodhana, Dushshaasana, Karna aadi Kaurava-veeras. In no time Chitrasena defeated the Kaurava sena. Kaurava Naayakas like Duryodhana, Dushshaasana and Karna were lying unconscious. Kaurava Raanis, with Bhayam, ordered the sainikas to go and request Paandavas, the Dharma-vartis, for help. Listening to the aartanaadam of the Kaurava-sainikas, one of the first to respond was Draupadi.

Draupadi said “I think helping our bandhu-janam in their kashta-kaalam is good”. Yudhishthira, the Dharma-nandana, immediately asked his brothers to go and help the Kauravas. Yudhishthira-anujas replied “Priya Bhraata! we will immediately go and save Kauravas from Gandharvas and come back”. They did Namaskaaram to Yudhishthira and went to Chitrasena.

In no time Bhiima-arjuna defeated the Gandharvas, Chitrasena and released the Kauravas. Seeing the super-human Bala-paraakramas of Arjuna, Chitrasena praised Arjuna and requested them to grant him the Darshanam of Yudhishthira, the Dharma-muurti. With aanandam, Bhiima-arjuna took Chitrasena along with Kauravas to Dharmaraaja. Seeing Yudhishthira, Chitrasena did pranaamam and said

“O Dharmanandana! Knowing that Duryodhana aadi Kauravas planned to do apakaaram to you, Devendra sent me here to stop them. However, with a Vishaala-hrudayam, you sent your brothers to save these paapaatmas”.

Even after knowing the kutila-buddhi of Duryodhana, Dharmaraaja didnt show any disrespect to him. He freed him from the bandhas, did hita-bodha and sent them away. Taking along with him Karna, Dushshaasana and other Kauravas, who bent their heads down with shy, Duryodhana left for Hastinaapuram.

Morals in the story:

  1. People who try to do bad to others will face difficulties themselves. Duryodhana, who was burning with Asuuya, Iirsha tried to harm the Paandavas; instead he got ghora-apamaanam.
  2. The Kshama gunam of Dharmaraaja is well shown in the story. Uttama purushas do Upakaaram even to an Apakaari.
  3. The Dharmya-vartanam of Draupadi and Paandavas is once again shown in this story. They immediately helped the Kauravas, who were in trouble, though always Kauravas tried to destroy them. Draupadi devi deserves a very special mention because, she helped the Kauravas even though they did the great insult of her in the way of her Vastraapakarshana.
  4. Knowing that elders like Bhishma, Drona will say “no” if they know the truth that Kauravas are going to disturb the Paandavas, the Kauravas told that they were going for Ghosha-Yaatra. Telling lies is a very bad thing.
Published in: on August 8, 2006 at 2:52 pm  Comments (3)  

Shri Gautama maharshi -2

(continuation of this story)

Thus many benifited from the Tapas-shakti of Shri Gautama maharshi. Many great munis used to live under his aashrayam. He with the help of his wife and shishyas used to grow vegetables, rice etc., then cook and serve to all the aashritas. Thus everyday Gautami maharshi, Ahalya and his shishyas used to get the entire phalam of Annadaanam. Thus they used to live happily following their nitya-naimittika-aadi Karma.

Maanava buddhi is chitraatichitram. When something is not there one feels its need and longs for it. Whereas once he gets it steadily, he completely forgets its importance and leaves Krutagnyata. Instead Krutaghnata starts. Iirsha, asuuya started in the muni-patnis first and then in munis staying with Shri Gautama maharshi. Everything which Gautama maharshi and Ahalya do, used to make the munis feel Gautama-Ahalya have ahankaaram that they got the Akshaya-jalam for them. This was because of the Asuuya they developed on Gautama-Ahalya, without having any Krutagnyata.

Once the munis and muni-patnis decided that somehow they must drive away Gautama-Ahalya from their place. They thought of doing apakaaram to the great Upakaari who saved them from Praanaapaaya-kshaamam. They used their Mantra-shakti and did puuja of Ganapati. Ganapati gave His divya-darshanam and asked the munis for a varam. They asked Ganapati to somehow make Gautama-Ahalya go away.

Devatas are aadhinas to Their Mantras. Many things which cannot be done otherwise can be done through Mantras. What the munis did was kaamyopaasana (they used their Mantras for satisfying their wants). Since Bhakti had no sthaanam in it, the munis were entirely responsible for their varam. For such upaasana their will be no Aadhyaatmika gains. The Tapas of Bhasmaasura and others were of similar nature (Svaartham is the only reason).

Vighneshvara was surprised by the Krutaghnata of the munis. He told munis “you thought of doing apakaaram to that person due to whom you are existing. Uttamas do Upakaaram to apakaaris. What should I say about you people who do apakaaram to a Upakaari? This will never cause Kshemam to you (so dont ask for it)”. Munis didnt like the hita-vaakyas of Mahaganapati. They still insisted on it. Ganapati said “ok. Praarabdham can never be changed. But you can never ever escape the phalitam of this Krutaghnata. Even though Gautama-Ahalya leave this place, because of them this Prapancham will only gain” and gave them the varam.

Ganapati did Shrushti of a maaya-dhenu. It started spoiling the crops (which Gautama-Ahalya were growing for Annadaanam). Knowing that a Gomaata must never even be driven away harshly, he took darbhas and put on the Gomaata. To his great surprise the maaya-dhenu died there only. Seeing this the muni-patnis and the munis did Haahaakaaras. They said “we thought that Gautama maharshi is an Uttama, but he did Go-hatya!”.

Gautama maharshi became a Vihvala. He called Ahalya and said “what is this Vidhi-vaipariityam? Did Paramashiva get angry on me? What must be done now? With Darbhas a Gomaata getting killed is unbelievable — and Go-hatya-mahaapaatakam!”. The munis and muni-patnis continued “we must never see your face. Devatas wont come to this aashramam to recieve Havis if such patitas stay here. You must immediately go away from here”. They started throwing stones on Gautama-Ahalya.

With Teevra-vedana, that he did Go-hatya-mahaapaatakam, Gautama-Ahlaya left the place and returned after going for some distance (1 krosha) to ask the munis for Praayashchittam.

This is Saampradaayam. One must immediately go to elders and ask for a way of Praayashchittam if one knows he committed a paapam. Munis replied “Gautama! You can either do (and try saving yourself from Go-hatya-paatakam):

1. 3 times Bhu-pradakshinam and do a maasa-vratam here.
2. Do 101 times Giri-pradakshina of this Brahma-giri. After that do 1 crore Linga-aaraadhana. Then Ganga-snaanam.”

Gautama maharshi did Brhama-giri Pradakshina and then Paarthiva-Linga-aaraadhana. Paarvatii-Parameshvara became prasanna seeing the puuja of Gautama-Ahalya and gave them Their Divya-darshanam, along with Pramadha-gana. Gautama maharshi did stotram of Shiva and then asked Him to save himself from Go-hatya-mahaapaatakam. Maheshvara said

“Gautama! My boy! You are a Krutaartha. You are a Dhanya. There is no paapam for you. You are an aajamna-shuddha. You were cheated by the kutantram of these Braahmanas who were bitten by asuuya. If anyone even does your naamasmaranam or has your Darshanam will loose all his paapams.

There is no praayashchittam for these krutaghnas (see this too). From today they will be Bhrashtas. They will be away from Me, leave Veda-Dharmas and their entire santaanam will become patitas. You please ask Me a varam”.

Gautama maharshi with great Vinayam and aanandam replied “Saamba-Mahaadeva! I think these Braahmanas did Upakaaram to me. Because of them only today I had the adrushtam of Your Darshanam”. Aadi-deva became happy seeing the Kshamaa-gunam of Gautama maharshi. Gautama maharshi continued “Parameshvara! If You are really impressed with me, please give Ganga for Loka-kalyaanam”. Ganga-devi appeared as soon as Parama Shiva did Sankalpam. Seeing Ganaga-maata Gautama maharshi said

“Ammaa! You are the one who makes the Trijagas pavitras. Once you blessed Bhagiiratha and saved the Sagara-kumaaras. Entire Uttara-Bhaaratam became sasya-shyaamalam because of You. Please bless the Dakshina-Bhaaratam too.”

Taking Shiva-aagnya Gangadevi took Jala-ruupam and said like this to Parama Shiva “I will go make Gautama and his parivaaram puniitam and return soon to Your Lotus feet”. Shankara said “Gangaa! You stay till the end of Kaliyugam in the 28th Mahaayugam (present Mahaayugam) of Vyvasvata-manvantaram (see this too). Then You return to Your nija-dhaamam”. Gangadevi agreed and requested Parama Shiva “Svaami! Please stay on My nadii-tiiram and bless Us”.

Shankara then became a Jyotirlingam at Tryambakeshvara. Ganga then became paravasha and started flowing from a tree (Medi chettu) on Brahma-giri. This pavitra sthaanam became Gangaa-dvaaram and Ganga got the name Gautamii because Gautama maharshi brought Her. It also got the name Godaavarii because it flowed on the place where a maayaa-gomaata fell. Many great rushis like Vasishtha and Bharadvaaja, with thier Tapobalam, did vistaaram of Godaavarii. There are many Shiva-Keshava kshetras on Godaavarii-nadii-tiiram.

Morals in the story:

  1. The importance of Krutagnyata, Kshama and Loka-shrayam are well shown by Gautama maharshi.
  2. Story shows what downfall can one durgunam like asuuya or Krutaghnata can bring even to great people. The muni-patnis and the munis coming under the influence of asuuya and iirsha even forgotKrutagnyata to Gautama maharshi.
  3. The importance of atithi-seva and anna-daanam is well shown by Gautama-Ahalya. They everyday used to grow vegetables, rice etc., cook and then serve them to the needy.
  4. Even though Gautama maharshi was driven away by the munis, he came back to ask them advice on what praayashchittam needs to be done. This shows how much importance one must give to aachaara-saampradaayas.

Search Terms: Gauthama, Gouthama, Goutama, Gowthama. Gowtama, Vighneshwara, Vinayaka, Ganapathi, Ganesh, Vighneshvara, Godavari, Gowtami, Goutami, Gouthami, Gowthami, Gauthami, Gautami

Published in: on August 3, 2006 at 4:03 pm  Comments (1)  

Story of the great Nāḍī Jaṅgha

Once upon a time in Naimiśāraṇyam, Śaunaka-ādi munis requested the great Pourāṇikottama, Sūta, to tell the Kṛtajñata-Dharma Vaibhavam. Sūta māhāmuni told the following story:

Kṛtajñata is a great sat-guṇam. Not forgetting a favour done is the minimum one can do. Kṛtajñata is one of the such Dharmas, where following the Dharmam does not carry any special Puṇya, but not following will give mahāpāpam. Saying thus, Sūta muni continued:

Once there lived a brāhmaṇa, a Kāśyapavamśajāta. But, he left his svadharmam and lived like a kirātaka in some forest. Everyday he used to hunt animals and lead a himsa-maya jīvanam. He was a māmsa-bhakṣhaka and had his interests in doing many other durita-kāryas. A person who believes that Indriya-sukhas are Paramārtham, runs behind viṣhayas and vañchas, always will want to earn more and more. To satisfy his vañchas, he dares to go against Dharmam and Nyāyam. A person who does not have Daiva-bhīti and Pāpa-bhīti not only does immense harm to himself, but also to the society.

Once he went to deśāntaras along with some vartakas for earning more money (in his durāśa). On their way, they reached a durgama parvata śreṇi. Meanwhile, a madagajam came running and chased them away. Each of them ran for their life and the kāśyapavamśajāta got separated from others and reached a still more gahana durgama-sthalam. He did not know how to get back to his svasthalam. He searched a lot for a way and finally reached the shade of an Aśvattha vṛkṣham, tired and exhausted.

On the top of the Vṛkṣham lived a mahābaka by name Nāḍī Jaṅgha (see this story too). He was not an ordinary baka. He had a mahākāyam and had Dharma-adharma vicakṣhaṇa, sambhāṣhaṇā sāmarthyam. He was the mitra of Lord Brahma and hence used to once in a while go and come to Brahmalokam. The Dharmajña, Nāḍī Jaṅgha, saw the exhausted human reaching the shade of the Vṛkṣham and gave sādara-ātithyam to him. He asked "O mahātma! who are you? Where are you coming from and heading to?". The brāhmaṇādhama told how he got lost and the reason for his exhaustion. With sānubhūti-vacanas, Nāḍī Jaṅgha invited the patita. He offered sweet water, very tasty food and with his big wings fanned air for him. Nāḍī Jaṅgha, seeing that it is dark, said "O mahānubhāva! You have now become a mitra of mine. So it is my kartavyam to remove your dāridryam and duhkham. Near to this place stays my priya mitra, Virūpākṣha, a King of the Rākṣhasas. He is a Dharmātma, has Madhuvrajam as his rājadhāni and lives 3 yojanas away from here. If you go to him and tell him that I have sent you, he will give you many dhana-ratnas. Tomorrow morning you can leave for his place, please take rest in my place for tonight". Nāḍī Jaṅgha prepared a kusuma-śayya and gave undisturbed sleep for the brāhmaṇādhama by guarding him all night from wild animals.

The patita brāhmaṇa left for Virūpākṣha's place the next day morning and was taken with great respect to the king by the rakṣhaka bhatas, on hearing the name of Nāḍī Jaṅgha. A person's ācāras, Dharmādharmas, bhāvas clearly appear in his ākṛti. A Dharmātma can easily see these in a person. Also being a King, Virūpākṣha immediately recognized that the brāhmaṇa was a bhraṣhṭa. However, since he was sent by his mitra, Nāḍī Jaṅgha, the king did many great satkāras to the brāhmaṇa. In a suvarṇa sthālikā he offered good food, gave him many kinds of dhana-ratnas and sent him away. Not able to carry the huge dhana-rāśis, the pāpātma planned to take rest at Nāḍī Jaṅgha's place on his way back. As usual, Nāḍī Jaṅgha offered him ātithyam and requested him to take rest in his place for the night.

The patita brāhmaṇa woke up in the mid-night and saw Nāḍī Jaṅgha, who was near by. Seeing the well-built baliṣhṭa deham of Nāḍī Jaṅgha, the durātma got a durbuddhi. Our style of living determines our ālocanas. Because the patita always had himsa in his mind, his ālocanas were pāpa-bhūyiṣhṭhas. He did not see a mahātma who gave him ātithyam and ājīvana-dhana sampadas in Nāḍī Jaṅgha; instead he saw a mouth-watering meal. He thought that Nāḍī Jaṅgha will be a great meal for his next days exhaustive journey. He immediately took a big stick and banged Nāḍī Jaṅgha and killed him. The kṛtaghna removed the baka's feathers, fried the māmsam and took it in his bag. Virūpākṣha, being a priya mitra of Nāḍī Jaṅgha, woke up abruptly from his sleep and started worrying about him. He ordered his rakṣhaka-bhatas to see if Nāḍī Jaṅgha was alright. He immediately ordered the bhatas to bring the kṛtaghna, on learning what happened. Seeing the patita, the King ordered "O Rākṣhasas! Cut this fellow into pieces and eat him. Since you are Rākṣhasas you can eat nara-māmsam". The sevakas replied "Kṣhama mahārāja! We cannot even smell the māmsam of this kṛtaghna". Saying this, they offered the māmsam to dogs, which also did not touch it.

Our bhāvas, karmas go into the aṇu-paramāṇus of our śarīram and carry on to many janmas. This is why our Dharma-śāstras always warn us to do sat-karmas and have sat-bhāvam. Meanwhile, the sad Virūpākṣha did the kriya-karmas for Nāḍī Jaṅgha, to provide him with sat-gatis. Knowing the sad news, Brahmadeva brought back the life of Nāḍī Jaṅgha, using the Amṛta-kṣhīram of Kāmadhenu. Seeing his friend, Nāḍī Jaṅgha, Virūpākṣha was very happy and explanied him all the story. Nāḍī Jaṅgha became very sad on hearing that his mitra, the patita brāhmaṇa was killed!! He requested his priya mitra, Brahmadeva to give back the life of the brāhmaṇa. Brahmadeva, surprised seeing the mahaudaryam of Nāḍī Jaṅgha, gave back the life of the durātma. Nāḍī Jaṅgha gave back all the sampadas to the kṛtaghna and sent him off. The patita went away happily without having any kind of paścāttāpam.

Sūta muni continued: That pāpātma will not have any niṣhkṛti. Now he was saved by the audāryam and karuṇārdra-hṛdayam of Nāḍī Jaṅgha, but this mahāpāpam will carry over to his janma-janmāntaras. Because he has to experience the entire pāpa phalitam he did not even have paścāttāpam (If he had, then pāpam may be will reduce). One must have done atleast some minimum puṇyam to get paścāttāpam. Any pāpam might have a niṣhkṛti, but not kṛtaghnata. That too a mitra-droham is a mahāpātakam.

Brahmadeva gave āśīrvādam to Nāḍī Jaṅgha saying "because you are a śreṣhṭha Dharmācāri you will be known as 'Rājadharma'. Even devatas will do namaskāras for your Dharma-svabhāvam and kṣhamā guṇam".

Morals in the story:

1. Importance of kṛtajñatādharmam is well illustrated in the story.
2. Mitra-droham and kṛtaghnata will lead to mahāpāpas, which do not have any niṣhkṛti.
3. Nāḍī Jaṅgha taught us great sat-guṇas like atithi seva, mitra-lābham, karuṇa and kṣhama.
4. The importance of following once own svadharmam is well shown in the story. The patita brāhmaṇa left his svadharma and took to paradharmam. He did lot of himsāyuta-pāpakāryas without any daivabhīti or pāpabhīti.

Search Terms: Nadijangha, Nadi Jangha, Virupaksha, krutagnyata, kshama

Published in: on June 18, 2006 at 5:07 pm  Comments (4)  

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