Tag Archives: yudhistir

HAPPY BIRTHDAY SHRAVAN

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Shravan Tripathi (23.1.93-24.2.2009)

SHRAVAN TRIPATHI (23.1.93 – 24.2.2009)

Dear Shravan. On your 28th birthday, I’m flooded with warm and gratifying memories of yours. Not years ago, when you were alive, but now yes, you do, remind me of King Chitraketu’s son, who expired, soon after he was born, but sermonised his father into the biggest lesson of the world in just a day, and that was. ‘All relationships are, because of your mortal body, and as you leave your mortal remains behind, you also leave behind, your relations—it sounds harsh. Thereafter, everyone is all by himself and has to suffer, as per his karmas.’

They say a God’s day is equivalent to 12 human years. You lived for 16 years. Your short life span taught me many things in that one-an-a-half, God’s days. You’ve been through all the dimensions of life—prime being the frontiers of birth and death. Birthday is of course a celebration—but death a huge frustration, especially, for the ones left behind. How tricky is life. No matter, how much you plan, life has its own plans. ‘Do not plan anything. Things will take their own course.’ Says Osho. The sixteen years that I spent with you were par-excellence. From your babyhood, childhood to your teens it was just fantastic. And how the family together fought the battle of cancer is something we can’t forget.

Your sad and untimely demise takes me yet to another iconic story. Yeh Mahabharat se hey. At the end of 12 years in exile in the forests, time had come for the Pandavas to live in Agyat Vas—incognito. One day, while searching for the mysterious deer, Yudhishtir, was exhausted and thirsty. His brother Nakul, thus ventured out, to fetch water for him where he found a beautiful lake. The lake was devoid of any living creature except a crane (Baka). When he attempted to take water from the lake, the crane spoke, “Listen Nakul! The water of this lake will turn into poison if you take it without satisfactorily answering my questions.” But Nakul defied the crane and drank the water and died on the spot. So did, Yudhisthir’s other brothers, when they went, looking for Nakul. Finally, Yudhistir followed, in desperation to find his brothers. He arrived at the same lake where he was interfaced with the same crane who revealed himself as a Yaksha—a spirit. Yudhistir answered all the questions of Yaksha and then had the water and even got his brothers back. Well those were the powerful men of those times about which I can only visualise and dream. I wish I had the answers to get you back even when you weren’t the Nakul who drank that water.

But more than that there is this story that really inspires me. There was once a cave that lived underground as most caves do. The cave had spent its entire life in darkness. It had never seen light. One day, a voice came up to him and said, ‘Come up … into the light. Come up … and enjoy the sunlight.’ ‘I don’t know what you mean by light. All I have ever known and seen is darkness.’ The cave replied. ‘Come and see it for yourself,’ said the voice again. The cave mustered up enough courage and climbed up slowly from the depths of the earth. Suddenly, it reached the top of the earth and was surrounded by the magnificent light, the likes of which he had never seen before in his life. ‘This is beautiful,’ said the cave. And after enjoying the light for a while the cave said to the sunlight, ‘Now it is your turn to come with me and see the darkness.’ ‘What is darkness?’ Asked the Sunlight. The cave answered, ‘come and see it for yourself.’ The Sunlight decided to visit the cave’s home. And as the Sunlight entered the cave, it said. ‘Now show me where your darkness is.’ But with the Sunlight, there was no darkness to be found.

In your short life span you came as that sunlight, and you did spread so much light, the nimbus of which can be seen and felt even now. What else Shravan? Rest in piece.

By Kamlesh Tripathi

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https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

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Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases especially cancer. Our posts are meant for our readers that includes both children and adults and it has a huge variety in terms of content. We also accept donations for our mission. Should you wish to donate for the cause. The bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

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Our publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(The book is about a young cancer patient. Now archived in 8 prestigious libraries of the US that includes Harvard College Library; Harvard University Library; Library of Congress; University of Washington, Seattle; University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; Yale University, New Haven; University of Chicago; University of North Carolina, at Chapel Hill University Libraries. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in libraries and archives of Canada, Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai and Jaipuria Institute of Management, Noida, India)  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Is a book on ‘singlehood’ about a Delhi girl now archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture, Delhi; Available for reading in Indian National Bibliography, March 2016, in the literature section, in Central Reference Library, Ministry of Culture, India, Belvedere, Kolkata-700022)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Is a fiction written around the great city of Nawabs—Lucknow. It describes Lucknow in great detail and also talks about its Hindu-Muslim amity. That happens to be the undying characteristics of Lucknow. The book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival of 2014. It is included for reading in Askews and Holts Library Services, Lancashire, U.K.)

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. It was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

(Is a story of an Indian salesman who is, humbly qualified. Yet he fights his ways through unceasing uncertainties to reach the top. A good read not only for salesmen. The book was launched on 10th February, 2018 in Gorakhpur Lit-Fest. Now available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

RHYTHM … in poems

(Published in January 2019. The book contains 50 poems. The poems describe our day to day life. The book is available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

MIRAGE

(Published in February 2020. The book is a collection of eight short stories available in Amazon, Flipkart and Notion Press)

Short stories and Articles published in Bhavan’s Journal: Reality and Perception, 15.10.19; Sending the Wrong Message, 31.5.20; Eagle versus Scholars June, 15 & 20 2020; Indica, 15.8.20; The Story of King Chitraketu, August 31 2020; Breaking Through the Chakravyuh, September 30 2020. The Questioning Spouse, October 31, 2020; Happy Days, November 15, 2020; The Karma Cycle of Paddy and Wheat, December 15,2020;

(ALL THE ABOVE TITLES ARE AVAILABLE FOR SALE IN AMAZON, FLIPKART AND OTHER ONLINE STORES OR YOU COULD EVEN WRITE TO US FOR A COPY)

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U.P. THE LAND OF SUPERNORMAL ROLE MODELS

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    In the complex understructure of India, UP sits like her invisible heart and spiritual voice. One can also address her as a headstrong folklore and tradition champion. Indeed the most populated state that celebrates its lineage in its diversity. It has an irrefutable matrix of society that hails, from two major communities, the Hindus and the Muslims—both passionate lovers of their native.

    Even though, the expanse of Hinduism resonates much beyond India and goes right up to the global frontiers. UP has always been its formidable pillar in the ever lengthening axis. Rather, it has been the primordial hub of religiosity since time immemorial. If we deconstruct her, she expands to a vast region much before it was converted into administrative hedges like states and districts. Which, Gods loved and nature adored. So, one can say she has been the showcase, the playground and even the reliable archives of Hinduism since grand old times.

    She doesn’t require administrate boundaries to conjoin. As, she, connects, consolidates and even identifies herself in many other ways. To begin with she is the mix of Pancha Bhoota—where the elements of Prithvi (Earth), Jal (Water), Agni (fire), Vayu (air) and Akash (ether or the sky) combine for her cosmic creation.

    If we translate this into ground realities we find. Starting from the texture of the soil, to the pitch of the lingo it is one. It has no less than Gods and super humans, as its role models. To say, some of its role models are even better known than the land they belong to won’t be a misnomer. And they all performed their incredible leelas in this very soil. We will come to that a little later.

    UP has that enduring fix of festivals, along with bucolic handholding and even similarity in cereal crops to live and breathe in congruence. There is no life without water they say and water forms the lifeline of any society. To that effect there are vaguely a series of some six or seven imposing rivers, leaving aside many small ones that almost run parallel but certainly from the western side of the state to the eastern corner. And finally,   they all merge as tributaries with Ma Ganga. The main stem of Ganga, begins with the confluence of Bhagirathi and Alaknanda rivers in the town of Devprayag in Uttara Khand. As per mythology she was brought to earth by king Bhagiratha, where, eventually she grew up to the status of Ma Janani in the vast expanse of the state. She is indeed the queen mother of all the water bodies as she carries along with her almost all the rivers. Therefore, for certain she can be called the icon of motherhood the provider—an unbeatable role model again. So blessed is the state that there is hardly a district or a town that is not within the easy catch of a river. Where, inhabitants even identify themselves with the rivers, such as ‘Sarjupari’—person living across river Sarju. There are many annual melas that connect the rural fraternity and its vendors across the sub-regions like Ballia and Nauchandi, to name a few.

    Hinduism has four ashrams when it comes to completing a lifetime—Brahamcharya, (Balkal … Birth to student like), Grihasta (householder), Vanaprastha (retired) and Sannyasa (renunciation). The holy land of UP connects you to some quintessential examples of how some incarnations or avatars of Maha Vishnu have spent their time in these defined ashrams. Hinduism doesn’t come through, without UP. And all lessons of life are available here.

    It teaches us, nothing is easy and everything needs to be fought for, whether you’re an incarnation of God or just a human form. Even, when, Lord Krishna was the 8th incarnation of Maha Vishnu. Mathura was under turmoil at least the night little Krishna was born in Dwaparyuga (the 3rd Yuga). He demonstrated the victory of good over evil when he killed his maternal uncle Kans. And by lifting the Goverdhan Parvat he proclaimed nothing is impossible if you are hell bent upon doing it. On bhakti (devotion) no one can beat Radha as a role model and it all happened in the Braj Bhoomi that is now divided into many districts. But Krishna leela has no boundaries.

    In the same land Bhagwan Sri Ram was born in Ayodhya as the 7th incarnation of Maha Vishnu in Treta Yuga (2nd yuga). Although, he was born before Krishna I’m describing him after Krishna because he had a steady childhood, whereas, Krishna had a fighting one. But Sri Ram exemplified himself as Maryada Purshottam—the quintessential example of respecting contemporary times and fairness accentuating into super goodness. He had many mid life crises which he fought through valiantly all by himself and his devoted team. Prime was 14 years of Banvas (exile into forest) and the abduction of his wife by Ravana. Where, on the one hand he did show grief but on the other hand as a true karmyogi he found his bearings and organized himself to fight the great battle of Lanka to get his wife back. But while doing so he ensured he didn’t overstep the laid down tenets of science and its concomitants, even, when, he was an avatar of Lord Vishnu. Today, Sri Ram is a household name and a role model that is not confined to any district or a religion and where his queen Sita is an epitome of devotion. His entire leela happened along the plains of river Saryu and the famous kingdom of Ayodhya where he ruled. Important to say—role models can be followed by any person from any religion or sect.

    Further, the great war of Mahabharat too, had its roots in Hastinapur near Meerut, again in UP. A well known mythological story of intensely disagreeing, blood thirsty royal cousins, that eventually escalated into a holy war. It is said, what is not seen and read in Mahabharat doesn’t exist in the world. It has again given many role models to the world while it was fought in Dwaparyug. It had many stalwarts. Some important names that one can immediately reflect upon are Krishna, Yudhistir, Bhishma Pitamah, Dronacharya, Kripacharya, Kunti, Karan, Yudhistir, Bhimsen, Arjun, Nakul, Sahdev, Draupadi, Veer Abhimanyu to name a few.

    Krishna derives his umbilical and founding legacy from Braj Bhoomi. From where he goes on to recite those ultimate verses of Gita, that is destined to happen, only once-in-a-planet-time, to a tranced Arjun, challenging him to pick up arms and fight for righteousness. The heft of Krishna thus becomes so very onerous for any one human form to carry as a role model. Resultantly, he spends his life in the little fragments of his teachings to promote his cause.

    Post the battles of Lanka and Mahabharat you had those iconic—blazing writers and poets like Valmiki, Tulsidas and Ved Vyas capturing the vivid description of the proceedings that led to the deadly wars. Together with awesome description of the scenes of war that remain unparalleled even today.

    And going forward when it comes to Vanaprastha and Sanyas we have Varanasi to teach us how to approach retirement and death as a role model. People come to Varanasi to see live Hinduism and even to die. The pyre is ever lit in Manikarnika Ghat and they say if a person is cremated there he or she goes to heaven directly.

    It is one of the oldest ghats of Varanasi. It is revered in Hindu mythology that when Mata Sati, Lord Shiva’s wife sacrificed her life and set her body ablaze after Raja Daksh Prajapati, her father and one of the sons of Lord Brahma tried to humiliate her husband Shiva in the Yagya. Lord Shiva took her burning body to Himalaya. On seeing the unending sorrow of Lord Shiva, Vishnu sent his divine Sudershan Chakra to cut the body into 51 parts which fell on earth. Lord Shiva established Shakti Peeth wherever Sati’s body had fallen. At Manikarnika ghat Mata Sati’s ornament had fallen. The lesson therefore is loaded with the despicable arrogance of king Daksh and the pristine relationship of Sati and Shiva—that can’t be emulated as a role model.

    In the treasured mythological scriptures such as Purans and Upanishads, battles between the Devatas (Gods) and Asuras (Demons) have often been described in great detail and on many occasions. Asuras, have always troubled Devatas for some reason or the other. In fact, they were mostly stronger than the Devatas in strength, and therefore Devatas were always scared of them. Even Devraj Indra who was extremely powerful and laced with a lot of divine offence could not harm them in any manner.  Many such wars were even fought, in an around, the present day UP.   Samudra Mathan (Churning of ocean) resulting into Kumbh, has also seen the bitter war between the Devatas and the Asuras for Amrit (Divine Nectar). Where, Lord Vishnu had to intervene. Because, had Asuras drank Amrit they would have become immortal, and that would have meant destruction of the goodness in the world.

    There are innumerable stories and one can go on and on. But the moot point is, whether, the present day generation of the state is living up to the values created by these role models.

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By Kamlesh Tripathi

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                                                      https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

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Share if you like it

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Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases. Should you wish to donate for the cause the bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

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Our publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(CAN BE BOUGHT FROM ON LINE BOOK STORES OR WRITE TO US FOR COPIES)

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TO ABANDON A DEPENDENT IS NOT ACCEPTABLE EVEN FOR HEAVEN

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DHARMRAJ YUDHISTIR’S RELIGIOSITY

 

    When, Maharaja Yudhistir came to know that Sri Krishna has ended his jeewanleela. And, post that Yadav’s too, have undergone self-destruction, because of infighting. He decided to coronate Arjun’s grandson Parikshit as the king of Hastinapur and head for sanyas. Keeping the difficult decision in mind he started preparing for it. To begin with he decided to give up the prestigious and coveted king’s costume and its jewelry. Following, which, he decided to enter into a maun-vrat and unlock his hair. Finally, he entered into veer-sanyas and left his Raj Bhawan and started walking towards the north. When, his brothers and even his wife Draupadi started following him.

    Yudhistir’s decision to renounce the world and it’s so called—moh-maya created ripples in his own mind. As a result of which, he stopped eating food and drinking water. He even stopped resting his body and mind and refrained from looking at anyone, in the eye. And, decided to keep moving without stopping anywhere. Until, he crossed Badrinath in the Himalayas. Where, his brothers and even his queen Draupadi were pacing up with him.

        After crossing Satyapath, Yudhistir entered the divine land of Swarga-rohan. But by now his brothers and his queen were extremely exhausted and they fell sick. Soon Draupadi, Nakul, Sahdev and even Arjun—they all fainted one by one and fell on the ground. The weather was freezing in Himalayas. So they couldn’t revive themselves and soon attained Him-Samadhi. Thereafter, the divine powers of the holy land sent them to Swarg where they attained moksha. But even these stupendous calamities, couldn’t stop Yudhistir. As, he was continuously moving, and never looked back even to catch a glimpse of his brothers and his wife. He was now bereft of rag-dwesh. In the end even Bhimsen, the strongest out of them, also collapsed and went into Him-Samadhi.

    When, Yudhistir was about to reach the top most mount of Swarga-rohan. He was not alone, in spite of the fact, that his brothers and his wife Draupadi, had entered into Him-Samadhi on the way. As, there was a dog, that was continuously following him, right from Hastinapur. When, Yudhistir finally reached the mount. Devraj Indra sat in his viman and descended on earth to meet him. He welcomed him and said—‘you’re the epitome of Dharma. So the swarg belongs to you. Please sit in my viman. So, that, I can take you there.’

    When, Yudhistir asked about his brothers and his wife Draupadi and requested, they too, be taken to swarg. Devraj replied—‘they have already reached.’

    Yudhistir then made another request—‘can we take this dog also in this viman.’

    Indra replied—‘you being the quintessential of dharma. Why do you talk like a novice? How can a dog enter swarg? Isn’t it enough that this desecrated being has had my darshan.’

    Yudhistir, wasn’t convinced by Indra’s logic. So he said—‘but the poor dog is dependent on me. Because of my devotion he has followed me all the way from Hastinapur. To renounce a living being that is dependent on you is adharma. So, deserting this dependent is not acceptable to me. And without him, I’m not willing to enter swarg.’

        Indra tried to counsel Yudhistir again—‘Rajan! You attain swarg only with the fruits of punya. Had this dog been a punyatma. He wouldn’t have been born as a dog.’

    Yudhistir politely said—‘God if that is the case. Then, I would like to donate half my punya to this dog.’

    ‘Dhanya ho, dhanya ho Yudhistir! I am very happy with you. And discarding the dog’s form, the Dharm-Devta appeared in front of him and blessed him.

    Moral of the story: Think thousand times, before you abandon someone who is dependent on you.

    Story is from Mahabharat

GLOSSARY

  • Maharaja—Great king
  • Jeewan-Leela—mortal role
  • Sanyas—life stage of renunciation within the Hindu philosophy
  • Maun-vrat—avow to remain silent
  • Veer-sanyas—renunciation from exercising strength
  • Raj-bhawan—official residence of king
  • Moh-maya—all things in the world are not real; they are fallacy, a presumed reality of the world held by people.’
  • Dharmacharn—good virtues
  • Him-Samadhi—meditative trance
  • Swarg—Heaven
  • Moksha—released from the cycle of rebirth
  • Rag-Dwesh—love and hate
  • Viman—mythological flying palace or chariot described in Hindu texts
  • Dharma—eternal law of cosmos
  • Darshan—divine audicience
  • Adharma—going against the law of cosmos
  • Punyatma—blessed soul
  • Dhanya ho—be blessed
  • Dharm Devta–God

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By Kamlesh Tripathi

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                                                      https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

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Share if you like it

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Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases. Should you wish to donate for the cause the bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

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Our publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(CAN BE BOUGHT FROM ON LINE BOOK STORES OR WRITE TO US FOR COPIES)

*****

 

 

SHORT STORY: THE POWER IN ELDERS BLESSINGS-MAHABHARAT

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mahabharat mahabharat2 mahabharat3

    In the battlefield of Kurukshetra. Both, forces of Kaurava and Pandava were standing opposite each other in a state of readiness and the battle of Mahabharat was about to commence. The armies, had set their formation and bowstrings, and were awaiting final orders.

    And, it was only a matter of moments before the shunk (conch-shell) would have been blown to announce the battle. When, suddenly Dharmaraj Yudhistir disrobed his armour and kept it in his chariot and along with that he also placed his weapons respectfully. Thereafter, he started walking towards the Kaurava army, and there, more specifically towards Bhishma Pitamah.

    Seeing, their eldest brother trying to cross over, and that too without his weapon and armour. Arjun, Bhimsen, Nakul and Sahdev too, got off their chariot. They came close to Yudhistir and started walking behind him. Not able to resist, even, Lord Kirishna started following the Pandavas. Where, Bhimsen and Arjun got very worried and decided to ask,—‘Maharaj Yudhistir! What is this, you’re doing just before the battle?’

    Yudhistir, didn’t reply. Meanwhile, Lord Krishna signaled all, to remain quiet and said,—‘Dharmaraj Yudhistir always behaves righteously and even now he is doing the same.

    After seeing them cross over, there was chaos in the Kaurava’s camp. People there started saying, ‘Yudhistir has chickend out, seeing our forces and wants to come under the aegis of Bhishma Pitamah.’ Some people even doubted that this could be a ploy to win over Yudhistir by Bhishma Pitamah. The soldiers thus started praising the Kaurava’s. Because, with this strategy the battle would have been over even before starting.

    Meanwhile, Yudhistir straightaway approached Bhishma Pitamah and offered his Pranam (Hindu way of offering respects with folded hands) and pleaded—‘Pitamah we are forced to wage this battle against you. So, please give us permission to do so along with your blessings.’

    Bhishma replied—‘Bharat Shrestra! Had you not come here in this manner, to take my permission for the battle I would have definitely cursed you to a defeat. But now I’m happy with you. So I wish you victory. You can now even ask for a vardan (blessing). Remember, man is a slave of his vows, but a vow is no one’s slave. Kaurava’s have put me under their thumb only because I have taken a vow to save and secure the throne of Hastinapur.

    Yudhisir asked—‘Pitamah you are invincible, so how can we win the battle and how can we defeat you?’

    Pitamah, requested them to come some other time and ask this question. From there Yudhistir went to their Guru Dronacharya and did pranam and asked for his permission to fight the battle. Acharya Dronacharya said similar things and gave his blessings; but when Yudhistir asked Dronacharya the way to his defeat. Acharya made it absolutely clear—‘as long as I have my shastra (weapons) in my hands no one can defeat me. But I have a weakness. During the battle if someone reliable, as you all, gives me the news of a mishap I will keep my bow and arrow aside, and get into meditation. You all can kill me then.’

    Yudhistir said pranam to Dronacharya and then moved towards Kripacharya, and after pranam he asked for his permission to start the battle. Kripacharya also like Bhishma Pitamah and Dronacharya, said similar things and blessed the Pandavas. But Yudhistir couldn’t have asked his Kulguru (Chief priest of the dynasty) Kripacharya how he could be killed in the battle. And before he could actually ask this tough question he fainted. Kripacharya understood what Yudhistir wanted to ask. He said—‘Rajan (King)! I cannot be killed by you all, nor can I be killed by anyone else. But I can give you my word that every morning I will pray to God for your success and in the battle I will not come in the way of your victory.

    Yudhistir then went to his maternal uncle Shalya and said pranam. Shalya also repeated what Bhishma Pitamah had said and gave the Pandavas his blessings. But along with that he also gave them a word that all along the battle he will keep attacking Karan with his sarcasm.

    After paying his respects to all his Gurujans, and after obtaining their permission Yudhistir along with his brothers crossed over to his side. This humbleness of Yudhistir created a soft corner in the hearts of Bhisham, Dronacharya and others without which winning the battle of Mahabharat would have been extremely difficult for the Pandavas.

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Posted by Kamlesh Tripathi

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                                                               https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

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Share if you like it

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Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases. Should you wish to donate for the cause the bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(CAN BE BOUGHT FROM ON LINE BOOK STORES OR WRITE TO US FOR COPIES)

*****

 

 

SHORT STORY: WHEN YOU PROTECT DHARMA, DHARMA PROTECTS YOU

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By Kamlesh Tripathi

dharma yaksha yaksha1

    The story relates to Mahabharat.

    During vanvas (forced exile into forest). Pandavas, were spending time in the Datya forest. Where, while roaming around, they felt thirsty. Is when Dharmraj Yudhistir climbed a tree. To see if there was any water in the vicinity. At one spot he could see a lot of greenery. That gave an indication as if water was around. He then requested his youngest brother Nakul to get some water from that place. And in obeyance, Nakul left immediately.

    Soon, he found a lake brimming with clear blue water. But the moment he went down to drink some. He heard a loud voice warning him, ‘do not dare to have the water from this lake. For I have established my authority on it and it belongs to me. First reply, to my queries before you even touch it.’

    Nakul, was extremely thirsty. He, therefore, did not pay attention to the warning. That the Yaksha (nature-spirits, usually benevolent) perched on a tree was passing. But the moment he tasted the water. He fell down and soon expired on the spot.

    Back here, in the Pandav’s camp. There was a bit of restlessness now. As Nakul had still not returned. Worried Yudhistir, then sent Sahdev after Nakul. He too heard the warning of Yaksha. But tried to drink the water, ignoring his advice and died on the spot. In the same manner. Yudhistir then sent Arjun and Bhimsen. But they too came one by one and met with the same fate.

    Yudhistir soon realised. That all his four brothers had not returned from the lake. From where they had gone to get water. He therefore, readied himself to go there, suspecting something was wrong in spite of his being tired. Soon, he was there. But upon seeing his valiant brothers lying dead. He went into a deep gloom. After mourning and wailing for sometime on the bodies of his brothers. He felt thirsty. When, he too decided to have water from the lake. Yaksha, who was still there. First tried to stop him from having water in the disguise of a crane. But when Yudhistir asked him, ‘who are you?’ He then dawned the form of a Yaksha and appeared on the tree top.

    When, peaceful and saint like Yudhistir said—‘Revered Yaksha! I do not want to acquire anything that doesn’t belong to me. You have laid down your authority, on the water of this lake. So let it be yours. If you want to ask any questions, please ask. I will try and reply to the best of my ability.

    Thereafter, Yaksha asked many questions. Yudhistir, replied to all of them correctly. Satisfied with the answers. Yaksha said, ‘Rajan! (King) you have correctly answered, to all my questions. Therefore, I grant the life of one of your brothers. So, whom do you want alive, out of the four?’

    Yudhistir replied, ‘kindly grant life to my younger brother Nakul.’

    Yaksha in a surprised tone asked—‘you are wandering in life without a kingdom in these dense forests. Where, you need to wage a fierce battle against your enemies to protect dharma. In such a situation you are not asking for the life of your most powerful brother Bhimsen or Arjun. Who are the best fighters in the world. On the contrary you are asking for the life of Nakul. Why so?’

    Dharmraj Yudhistir said—‘Respected Yaksha! The bliss of ruling a kingdom. Or the torture of vanvas depends on your fate and destiny. But a human being shouldn’t abrogate dharma. One, who protects dharma, is protected by dharma itself. And that is why I won’t deviate from the path of dharma. Kunti and Madri, both are my mothers. I am Kunti’s live son. And, I want the lineage of my second mother Madri also to remain intact. Therefore, I am requesting you to bring back Nakul to life. So that both the mothers have at least one child alive.

    Yaksha said–‘Yudhistir you are very knowledgeable and liberal in matters of interpretation, modesty and dharma. Therefore, I am happy with you and may God give life to all your four dead brothers. I happen to be your father ‘Dharma.’ I had come to see how you were doing and to test your love for dharma.’

    And, in the manner Yudhistir tried to protect dharma. Dharma too protected Dharmaraj Yudhistir. When all his four brothers got up, as if from deep sleep.

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Article-THE FASCINATING TALE OF PARIJAAT TREE

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    In the manner it is believed that Gods and Asuras (demons) claimed ‘Amrit’ by churning the ocean, in the great mythological event of Samundra Manthan,’ which happens to be the genesis of the world famous ‘Kumbh Mela’ now considered the biggest spiritual congregation on earth. In the same manner it is also believed that either Lord Krishna or Arjun brought the Parijaat Tree from heaven.

THE TREE

    Parijaat is a Baobab tree considered sacred. Located in the village of Kintoor, near district Barabanki in Uttar Pradesh. In botanical terms Parijaat is known as Adansonia Digitata and is placed in a special category, because it does not produce either fruits or seeds and neither can its branch cuttings be planted to reproduce a second Parijaat tree. This is a unisex male tree and the botanist say there is no such tree anywhere else to be found. The leaves of the tree in the lower part have five tips like the fingers of a hand, while in the upper parts it has seven.

    Parijat has beautiful small flowers, with snow-white petals, five in number and a red stalk and after drying the flowers take to a golden tinge. The flower blooms only at night and sheds before sunrise, and it also has medicinal value. Parijaat blossoms very occasionally, with very few flowers, but when it does, that is after the season of ‘Ganga Dashehra’ its fragrance spreads far and wide. The age of this tree is said to be some 1000 to 5000 years and the perimeter of the trunk is around 50 feet and the height around 45 feet.

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Mythology

    Kintoor is named after Kunti, mother of Pandavas and is about 38 km east, of district headquarters Barbanki. There also exists a number of ancient temples and their remains around this place. Near the temple established by Kunti, is this special tree called Parijaat which is said to have grown out of Kunti’s ashes.

    There are many other legends about this tree that find popular acceptance. One being, Arjun brought it from heaven and Kunti offered its flowers to Lord Shiva.

    There is also a sad romantic myth. According to which Princess Parijataka was in love with Sun, but her love was never reciprocated. Having lost in love, she committed suicide and from her ashes rose, the Parijaat tree. Since she is unable to bear the sight of her love during the day, she blooms only at night, and sheds the flowers as tears, before the sun rises.

    Another story is, Lord Krishna brought this tree for his beloved queen Satyabhama or Rukmini. According to Harivansh Puraan the Parijaat Tree is a Kalpavriksh or wish bearing tree, which, apart from this one is only found in the heaven. New-weds visit the tree for blessings, and every Tuesday a fair is held where local people worship the tree.

    Some myths go on to say, that the tree sheds its tears on the touch of the first rays of the sun. The fragrant flowers spread their fragrance in the entire area during the day, as a sign of undying love for her lover, the Sun.

    Another myth has a romantic link, but is a bone of contention. According to this myth, the Parijat tree was planted in Indralok (the abode of Lord Indra) which was one of the gifts received from the Samudra Manthan. It was thus a celestial plant, not available on earth. To sow seeds of discord, Narada, brought some flowers from Indralok and gave them to Lord Krishna. And waited to see, to which of his wife Krishna gave the flowers to. Finally Krishna gave the flowers to Rukmini. On seeing this, Narada went to Satyabhama; Krishna’s other wife and told her about it.

    On hearing this Satyabhama’s felt very jealous. Then Narada went on to give her a solution. He suggested that she should insist on Krishna getting the plant itself from Indralok and plant it at her home, instead of a few flowers. Satyabhama decided to do that, and when Krishna came to her quarters, she showed her anger and disappointment on the whole incident and insisted that he get the entire plant from Indralok.

    True to his nature in the mean time Narada went and warned Indra that some earthlings were out to steal the celestial plant from his Indralok. Meanwhile when Krishna and Satyabhama after visiting Indralok were about to leave after picking a branch of the celestial Parijata tree, they were accosted by Indra. Soon a battle broke out between them in which Indra lost.

    But Indra would not let it go so easily. He cursed the plant would never bear fruits again, though it might bear flowers, and thus since then, the Parijat tree does not bear any fruit.

    Having brought the tree to Dwarka, Rukmini also took fancy to the tree, because of its flowers. So Krishna planted the tree in such a manner, that though the tree was planted at Satyabhama’s house, but when it bore flowers, they would fall in Rukmini’s home. Satyabhama had asked for the tree and she got it, and Rukmini wanted the flowers, and she had it too!

    It is believed that the Parijat Tree located at Kintur Village, in Barabanki District of Uttar Pradesh belongs to the age of the Mahabharat. It is mentioned in the Mahabharat that Sri Krishna uprooted the Parijata Tree from the kingdom of Indira, the God of Devas, and presented it to his wife Rukmini.

    Another legend in the Puranas suggests that Arjuna of Mahabarat brought the Parijata Tree for his mother Kunti, who offered it to Shiva.

By Kamlesh Tripathi

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Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases especially cancer. Should you wish to donate for the cause. The bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

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By Kamlesh Tripathi

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https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

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Share it if you like it

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Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases. Should you wish to donate for the cause the bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

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