By Kamlesh Tripathi
In the country of Vidharbh, there ruled a king by the name of Shwet. He governed his country in a very meticulous manner, and his subjects were quite happy under his rule. But after a period of time the king was not enjoying all this. He felt like giving up his kingdom, and move to vairagya (renunciation). Soon, he decided to hand over the reign of his empire to his brothers. After which he left for the jungles to perform his tapasya (austere meditation). The passion and devotion with which he had governed his country all this while, prompted him to even perform his tapasiya in the same manner and it continued for a thousand years. During that period the devotion he showed was incomparable. He was therefore sent to Brahmlok (where Lord Brahma resides) after his death. There he had all the facilities, but he never got any food to eat. And out of hunger, his senses had debilitated. When he finally couldn’t bear it, he asked Lord Brahma, ‘God!—Brahmlok is considered to be free from the pangs of hunger and thirst. But, then, why is it that I’m almost dying of it.’
Lord Brahma replied—‘Vatsya! (Dear) In Mritulok (world of life and death) you never donated for a noble cause. Neither did you feed any hungry person. And unless you donate and feed the needy in Mritulok you will never get food in Bhramlok. The food you ate while you were alive only nourished your own body. Therefore, you can go back to Mrityulok and continue to feed on your own dead body. There is no other way out for you. Your dead body shall remain there forever as your food. And after hundred years, Agasta Muni (sage) will rescue you from this state.’
And as destined, after hundred years Agasta Muni with his power of dev-yoga reached that huge jungle of hundred yojan (vedic measure of area). It was completely quiet. There was neither an animal nor a bird in it. At the centre of that jungle there was a lake. Near that Agasta Muni saw a corpse lying. He started wondering whose corpse is it and how did the person die. In the meanwhile there landed an aircraft from the sky in the lake. From that a divine looking person came out. He first entered the lake to have a bath. After which he started feeding on the corpse lying there. And after filling his stomach sumptuously, he had a good look at the face of the corpse and then started moving towards his aircraft to return to Brahmlok. Muni, who was not far said to him—‘You appear to be a divine person from heaven, but your food is obnoxious.’ The dead person then told his entire story to the Muni and said, ‘my hundred years of punishment are over. But I don’t really know when I’ll get to see Agasta Muni, and, when, will he rescue me.
Agasta muni replied—‘Divine Soul! I am Agasta Muni. Tell me, how can I help you? The divine person said –‘Since I never presented anything to anyone in my life. I want to present you with this valuable ornament. Kindly accept this and help me out.’ And the moment he accepted the ornament the corpse vanished and the divine person attained complete moksha.
Remember, if you are in a position to help someone and you don’t. Consider it to be a crime.
From Padam Puran, shristi khand