Shasha-Pakshi-Maarjaala Katha

Kapinjalam, a Pakshi (bird), used to live in the Vruksha-Kotaram (hole of the tree) in an Aranyam near Vindhya-Parvatas. One day, at Suuryaastamaanam, there was a very heavy rain, because of which Kapinjalam couldnt return to its home in time. Meanwhile, a Shasham (rabbit), by name Deerggha-karna, who was wet in rain, came to the Vruksha-Kotaram. Deerggha-karna took aashrayam in the Vruksha-Kotaram and slept.

Kapinjalam then reached its home and said “O Shashaadhama! Seeing the time when I am not there, you came and occupied my house. Now also its not late. If you want to live, leave the place”. With Garvam, Deerggha-karna replied “enough. Dont think I’ll be afraid of these warnings from you. Vaapii-kuupam, Tataakam (wells, lakes), Vruksha-Kotaram etc. belong to those who first occupy them. They will never be under the control of one person all the time. If you dont go away I am ready to fight”.

“Ok. I accept the challenge. Lets do Yuddham at Suuryodayam. Be patient till then” said Kapinjalam. Both spent the night thinking about the Yuddham. They woke up by Suuryodayam and then they thought who will be Dharma-nirneta? Deergha-karna then said “In Narmadaa-nadii teeram there lives a Maarjaala-shreshtha by name Dadhi-karna. He is a Dharmaatma, Samavarti, Shaanta-muurti”. By the time of Maadhyaahnikam, they reached Dadhi-karna, the Kapata-Dhaarmika, Kevala-jathara-puuraka (one who lives only for filling his stomach) and said “O Maarjaala-naayaka! We have a Sthala-vivaadam (fight for land). Please tell us what is Dharmam, without having Pakshapaatam. Please give your Dharma-nirnayam, without making us wait for long”. Dadhi-karna replied

“you are telling you are coming from a far off place. I am already weak with Jaraabharam (old age) and more because of Chaandraayana-vratam. So you both come near me and tell loudly in my ears your arguments”. Immediately Dadhi-karna continued, thinking that Kapinjalam and Deergha-karna wont believe in him, “it is time for my Maadhyaahnika-anushthaanam. After that I have to do Daana-dharmas. Even though there are many who can do Dharma-nirnayam, you came to me from a long distance. So it is not correct to send you away”. He then told the following Neeti:

When Mrutyu comes, the only thing that saves is Dharmam. Nothing else will be of any use. Hence whatever difficulties may come, one must never leave Dharmam. All this is Parama-Satyam. One must never leave Satyam. It is the muulam for all Shubhams. Along with Satyam, one must have Bhuuta-daya. Bhuuta-daya is an alankaaram to all Dharmas. ‘Ahimsa Paramodharmah‘. Kruuraatmas who dont know this leave Bhuuta-daya and run only after protecting their own shariiram. ‘Svaashritaavanasamo na hi Dharmah‘ says Vedam. Hence we must never leave aashritas. So I will help you. A Sajjana must leave Lobham first. Duraasha makes even great people do paapa-kaaryams” (see this story).

Listening to these Neeti-vaakyams, Kapinjalam and Deergha-karna believed in the Kapata and came near Dadhi-karna. Immediately Dadhi Karna killed both of them and ate them happily. While dying Kapinjalam and Deergha-karna had pashchaattaapam and thought “Hatavidhi! Why did we fight over a small issue? What is there is he sleeps or I sleep or both share for one night? Then we believed in this Kapata. Even after knowing what qualities a Dharma-nirneta must have, we made a mistake. Vinaasha Kaale Vipariita buddhi”.

Morals in the Story:

  1. Yuddham always has many side-effects. Fighting for a small thing, both Deergha-karna and Kapinjalam lost their lives. Hence in our Raaja-dharmam, one always tries to send Shaanti-sandesham first. (Shri Raama and Yudhishthira do the same)
  2. One must be very careful while choosing a Dharma-nirneta. Not knowing about Dadhi-karna fully, Deergha-karna and Kapinjalam went to the Kapata-dhaarmika for Dharma-nirnayam.
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Published in: on October 10, 2006 at 11:59 pm  Comments Off on Shasha-Pakshi-Maarjaala Katha  

Vishvaasa Ghaatuka Ninda

A person who makes others believe him and then cheats them is a Vishvaasa-ghaatuka. There is no greater Drohi than a Vishvaasa-ghaatuka. Such paapaatmas must be kept away (see this too). We must be careful of such people who from outside tell all Dharmas, Neeti-bodha, but they always do paapa-karmas and destroy the people who trust them. They appear beautiful, they do Dharma-pravachanam — but they have Kapata-buddhi.

Long time ago, in Saagaraantam, there used to live a Vruddha-hamsa. It had durbuddhi. However it used to do Dharma-bodha to the birds that used to live near-by. It used to say follow Dharmam always, leave adharmam. All birds used to have Guru-bhaavam on the Kapata-hamsa.

One day all the birds met and asked the Hamsa to tell what is the uttama Dharmam. Vruddha Hamsa replied “Ahimsa is the parama-dharmam. There is no Dharmam greater than it” (see this too). Surprised the birds asked “O Andajeshvara! Knowingly if a person always follows Ahimsa what uttama-lokams will he reach?”. Kuhana-hamsa replied “There is no lokam to which he cannot go”. Then the birds asked “you know all Shaastras and follow Dharmam. Why didnt you go to the Svarga-lokam then?”. With mandahaasam, Hamsa replied “After Bhagavat-nirneeta-aayu is over and one does Deha-tyaagam, then a Dharmatma will surely reach Svargam”. Impressed with the words of the Vruddha-hamsa all birds everyday did seva to it, fed it with good meal and lived happily.

In the course of time, the birds got 100% confidence that this Hamsa is a Dharmaatma and left their eggs under the protection of the Hamsa and flew a long distance away. Utilizing the opportunity the Hamsa slowly one-by-one ate away all the eggs. There was no end to the duhkham of the birds who saw that the eggs were eaten. One intelligent bird in them then identified that the Vruddha-hamsa ate away the eggs. With Aikamatyam, all birds attacked and killed the Kapata-hamsa. Because of its duraachaaram, the Hamsa reached Ghora-narakam.

Morals in the story:

  1. Vishvaasa-ghaatukam is a mahaa-paapam. We must be careful and never even by mistake think about such dushchaaranam.
  2. We must be very careful in choosing a Guru. The birds came into the influence of the false-speeches of the Vruddha-hamsa and accepted him as their Guru.
Published in: on August 23, 2006 at 11:59 pm  Comments Off on Vishvaasa Ghaatuka Ninda  

The story of Prataapabhaanu

This is a very praachiina-gaadha, told by Parama Shiva to Shri Paarvatii Devi. Satyaketa used to rule the Raajyam of Kaikaya. He was a Dharmaatma, Tejaswi, Balashaali, Susheela. He had two putras: Prataapabhaanu was the jyeshtha putra. Arimardana was his younger brother. Both of them also were great Yoddhas and had many Sadgunams. Also their Aikamatyam is apuurvam. They never had any quarrels between themselves. After making Prataapabhaanu the King, Satyaketa took Vaanaprastham.

Prataapabhaanu’s matri was Dharmaruchi. He was equal to Shukraacharya in Raajaneeti. With the help of Arimardana, Dharmaruchi and the Chaturanga-bala-sainyam, Prataapabhaanu used to do Dharmapaalanam of the Sapta-dviipams. All the other Kings used to pay him taxes. All this praja were happy. Dharmaruchi was a great Shri Hari Bhakta. Because of Dharmaruchi, Prataapabhaanu did many Satkaaryas, Daanams, Tiirthams, Devata-archana and Yagnyas with Bhakti. Prataapabhaanu was a viveka and hence did “Bhagavat-arpanam” of all his Karma.

One day Prataapabhaanu went for Mrugayaa-vihaaram. He did vadha of only those animals which were Vadhaarham according to the Shaastras. Vidhivashah he saw a wild-pig and tried to kill it using his Dhanurbaanam. But he could not; everytime he missed it. Prataapabhaanu, who fought many fierce Yuddhams, was not able to catch a mere wild-pig. The wild-pig ran into deep forest and Prataapabhaanu followed it. Because he was a Dhiira, he followed it into the very dangerous deep jungle too. The wild-pig then ran into a cave and Prataapabhaanu could no more follow it. Prataapabhaanu got separated from his army and got lost in the jungle. He was very thirsty and exhausted. He became unconscious and gained consciousness after sometime. He then found an aashramam in the jungle.

Vidhivashah, it was the place where a Kapata Raaja, who was once defeated by Prataapabhaanu, was living. He had antah-krodham, antah-shatrutvam on Prataapabhaanu. He immediatelty identified that the one who came is Prataapabhaanu. However Prataapabhaanu didnt recognise the Kapata Sanyaasi (the enemy King). Seeing the Sanyaasi, Prataapabhaanu did Yathaavidhi namaskaaram. The Kapata Sanyaasi welcomed Prataapabhaanu and asked to take snaanam in the near by pushkarani. After snaanam he gave cool water to Prataapabhaanu.

The Kuhana-sanyaasi (Kapata-sanyaasi) then took Prataapabhaanu into his aashramam and with Mrudu-vachanas asked kushala-prashnas to Prataapabhaanu. Prataapabhaanu, following Raaja Neeti, told “I am Prataapabhaanu’s mantri. I came for Mrugayaa and got lost. It is my adrushtam that I found you here”. The Kuhana-sanyaasi replied “Your Raajyam is 10 yojanas from here! So please take rest for tonight and leave tomorrow”. Prataapabhaanu is a Nishkapati, whereas the Sanyaasi was a Kapati. Sanyaasi replied “I am a Bhikaari. Nirdhana. I took Sanyaasam and came to this forest to do Daiva-dhyaanam”. Prataapabhaanu did seva to the Sanyaasi and said “you are a great Sanyaasi. You are a dhanya”. Seeing that Prataapabhaanu believed his Kapata-vesham, Sanyaasi continued “I have been here for a long time. No one came here other than you”.

A peacock looks beautiful, but its aahaaram is a snake. Even a viveka like Prataapabhaanu could not see who actually the Kapata-sanyaasi was.

The Kapata-sanyaasi started telling Dharma, Hita-vaakyams. He said “Shri Hari is Paramaatma. There is nothing greater than Him”. Prataapabhaanu was impressed listening to the words of the Sanyaasi. The Kuhana-sanyaasi continued “Sodara! I am Ekatanu”. Prataapabhaanu asked the meaning of Ekatanu. The Baka-dhyaani continued “I was there since the start of this Shrushti. I have never left this shariiram. Hence people know me as Ekatanu. Dont be surprised, nothing is impossible through Tapasshakti”. Prataapabhaanu’s anuraagam on the Kapata increased with these words. The Kapata Sanyaasi then told Prataapabhaanu many Puraanams, Itihaasams, did Vyaakhyaanam about Gnyaanam, Vairaagyam. He also told many many ashtonishing stories about Shrushti-sthiti-laya in detail. Prataapabhaanu then completely came into the control of the Kapata-sanyaasi.

Prataapabhaanu said “I am Prataapabhaanu”. Sanyaasi then said “you did a correct thing by not disclosing your name previously. You know Raaja-neeti. Giving your identity to strangers may lead to the destruction of your Raajyam and praja. I am happy with you”. Prataapabhaanu was also happy with the Kapata-sanyaasi’s reply. The Baka-dhyaani continued “your father is Satyaketa. You came for Mrugayaa and got lost due to the wild-pig. I know all this due to my Guru-krupa. Please ask me a Varam, I will grant it to you”.

Prataapabhaanu did namaskaaram and replied “O Dayaa saagara! Your darshanam is durlabham. Make my shariiram Jaraa-marana-rahitam! No one must be able to defeat me and make me Eka-chatraadhipati of this Bhuumandalam for 100 Kalpams“. Kuhana-sanyaasi said “tathaastu. Mrutyu wont come near you. But there is one problem. Viprottamas have a lot of Tapas-shakti. It will be difficult to make them your Vasham. Except Vipra-shaapam, nothing can destroy you. Not even Yamadharmaraaja”. Seeing Prataapabhaanu’s aanandam, Kuhana-sanyaassi continued “dont tell this to anyone. Else I am not responsible for the consequences. If you tell this to anyone else, you will get many difficulties”.

Prataapabhaanu said “Muniishvara! I have one doubt. How to bring a Viprottama into my control?”. “There are many many ways. One simple thing I can tell you. But I have never stepped in anybody’s house till now. And without me it will be difficult” replied the Kapata-sanyaasi. “Greater people must show mercy on the lesser ones. How Bhuumi bears the sands, how Parvatas support the grass, similarly bear me”. Kapata-sanyaasi replied “Since you believe me 100%, I am accepting. But Mantram, Yogam, Yukti and Tapas must always be done in secret. They only one gets its phalam. So do this. Invite 1 lakh Viprottamas everyday for Anna-daanam for 1 year. If you do this, not only the Vipras who eat, but also their entire family will come under your control. Automatically Devatas will come into your control, because you do seva to Viprottamas who do Havan, Yagnyam Puuja and Daiva-seva. I will do apaharanam of your purohita with my maaya-shakti, take his form and cook food for these invited people everyday for 1 year. Dont tell this to anybody and three days from now you will have my Darshan again. Also, after you sleep tonight, I will take you to your Antahpuram with my Tapas-shakti and leave you there”. Prataapabhaanu, happy with the kapata-sanyaasi’s words, slept happily.

Then Kaalaketa rakshasa, the mitra of the Kapata-sanyaasi, who took the form of a wild-pig and made Prataapabhaanu loose his path, came. He had many maaya-shaktis. He had 100 putras and 10 Bhraatas. All of them are dushtas and ajeyas. Once they did himsa of Devatas, Sajjanas and Braahmanas — so Prataapabhaanu killed all of them. Hence both the Kapata-sanyaasi and Kaalaketa raakshasa have krodham on Prataapabhaanu and now they united to destroy him. Poor Prataapabhaanu did not know this.

Kaalaketu said “mitrama now take rest. You did as we planned. Now on the 4th day i’ll meet you after destroying Prataapabhaanu along with his family”. He with his maaya-shakti, took the form of Purohita, hid the real Purohita in a cave and moved Prataapabhaanu to his bed in his palace. Prataapabhaanu after waking up, thought everything was happening as planned. For 3 days he spent his time doing Dhyaanam of the Kapata-sanyaasi (instead of God!). He invited 1 lakh Braahmanottamas. Kaalaketu cooked tasty food with 4 curries using his maaya. However he mixed flesh of many animals and Braahmanas. Prataapabhaanu welcomed and served the aahaaram to the Viprottamas. Then an Akaashavaani created by Kaalaketu said “donot eat this aahaaram it has Vipra-maamsam”. Without thinking Viprottamas gave shaapam to Prataapabhaanu “along with your family become a Raakshasa. In one year you, along with your family will die and no one will be left to give you tarpanam too”. Prataapabhaanu became very sad. Then real Aakaashavaani said “there is no mistake of Prataapabhaanu. without thinking you gave shaapam”. Prataapabhaanu ran inside and saw that there was no food, no Purohita and everything was maaya.

The Viprottamas replied “even though it was not your mistake, Vidhi cannot be changed. Kaala-mahima is great. One must experience the result of his paapam-punyam. Our shaapam cannot be taken back”. Knowing this, the Kapata-sanyaasi, along with other Kings, attacked Prataapabhaanu. Prataapabhaanu and his family died in the fierce battle.

Prataapabhaanu took birth as Raavana and Arimardana as Kumbhakarana. Dharmaruchi became Vibheeshana, the great Bhakta of Shri Raama Chandra. Prataapabhaanu’s family became raakshas and did many paapa-karyams.

(this was the reason for Raama-avataar in one of the Kalpams. Kalpa-antara-bhedam in Raamaayana, Bhaarata Kathas are hence usual).

Morals in the story:

  1. “Duraasha leads to difficulties”. For a human, aasha is necessary. But “ati sarvatra varjate”. Though Prataapabhaanu had everything — he was ruler of entire Bhuumandalam, he had great aishvaryam, good brother and Mantri, used to do Dharma-paalana, had everything, still he wanted more and asked the Kapata-sanyaasi for more.
  2. We must be very careful and choose a Guru/teacher/Purohita. With pralobham of being ruler of earth for 100 Kalpams, Prataapabhaanu blindly believed the “unknown” Sanyaasi, leaving his own Purohita, Mantri and Guru. Especially he being a King must be more careful, since his entire Raajyam will depend on him.
  3. Kapata buddhi is well shown in this story through the words of the Kuhana-sanyaasi. Kapatam is a very bad durgunam. (See this story, where God punishes a Kapata)
  4. One must be careful about enemies (either bahih-shatru or antah-shatru like Kaamam, Krodham etc.). They can anytime cause our destruction. So we must always have a check on them.
  5. The importance Bhaarateeyas give to Parishubhrata is also shown in this story. Though Prataapabhaanu was exhausted, he took snaanam in the pushkarini and then had the jalam to quench his thirst.

Search Terms: Ravana, Prathapabhanu, Pratapabhanu, Vibhishana, Vibhiishana

Published in: on August 16, 2006 at 11:59 pm  Comments (5)  

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)  

Śrī Kṛṣhṇa līlas -3

(continuation of this story)
This series of stories on Śrī Kṛṣhṇa līlas try to bring out some durguṇas, commonly found in people, and thus warn us to be away from the same.

Vatsāsura Bhañjanam:

Balarāma and Śrī Kṛṣhṇa were growing day-by-day. They got the age where they could take the cows out, along with other Gopālas. Kālindī nadī sands was their fauvorite vihāra-sthalam. Balarāma used to wear a nīlāmbaram and Śrī Kṛṣhṇa a pītāmbaram. Paramātma with His madhura veṇu gānam taught the Gopālas and the Gomātas the Sāmaveda-sāram. Everyone who hear the venugānam used to experience Brahmānandam. All of them used to play, eat together. Kṛṣhṇa used to decorate the Gopālas and satisfy all their surprising new new childish vāñchas. Aaha! What immense puṇyas must they have done to have Śrī Kṛṣhṇa as their sakha!

Cow Play

Vatsāsura, sent by Kamsa, once mixed with the cow-herd that the Gopālas were protecting. Paramātma kept observing him. Vatsāsura slowly slowly approached near Śrī Kṛṣhṇa and kicked him with his legs. Śrī Kṛṣhṇa caught the asura by his legs, rotated him in circles and smashed him against a tree (Velaga Cettu). The tree broke down and a tejaH puñjam left the asura and joined in the Paramātma.

(See this image)

Vatsāsura's Caritra:

Murāsura's son was Pramīla. Once he took the guise of a brāhmaṇa and approached Vasiṣhṭha maharṣhi and asked the maharṣhi to give him the Nandinī dhenu. Nandinī identified the kapaṭa nāṭakam of Pramīla and gave him a śāpam "become a calf with asura svabhāvas". On pleading the dhenu for kṣhama, She said that when Śrī Kṛṣhṇa kills you, you will attain mokṣham.

Durguṇam to be unlearnt: Kapaṭam, Kuṭilatvam.

Search Terms: Vatsaasura, Muraasura, Nandini, Vasishtha

Published in: on June 13, 2006 at 4:55 am  Comments Off on Śrī Kṛṣhṇa līlas -3  
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