Stories of Bharat 15-Do not lie/WhoisWise/Mother Heart/HurrytoDie

  • This article has stories that teach simple lessons of life.

In 2019 we presented 12 articles on stories of Bharat, all written by author. In 2021 this is my third story. Story 13-14 and links from 1-12 can be viewed here  


Why did I start writing these Stories?

As a mother of three I have realized that many children are deprived of hearing tales that are Indian in origin. This could be for various reasons, an important one being that parents themselves do not know these tales.


The desire to learn English and about Western Nations meant that atleast two generations were fed tales from the West namely Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, etc. Because of this when you ask a child to write an essay of their favourite character they will write about Santa Claus and Snow White but not Shivaji.


So I took it upon myself to write short stories about India’s cultural heritage. The stories have been written in such a way that they can be read to children. At the same time I added snippets of our culture, rituals, shlokas, food, etc. so that children get to know about them. Must add that these stories are not meant to be scholarly pieces of work. 


Do not tell LIES


Once upon a time, there was a very renowned teacher. He was renowned not just for his knowledge, but also for his truthfulness. People came to him from far off lands to enrol their children in his Ashram because they believed that he would teach them skills as well as make them a person of strong moral character.


This teacher had only one son. Unfortunately this boy did not value his father or his teachings as much as the students in the Ashram. The fact was that this teacher was never after fame or money. So they remained poor and the son was not so happy about this. Though he never openly said anything to his father, the wise teacher knew what his son felt. But for him, Dharma was to be aspired for, not Dhan (money).


The young boy fell in love with a very nice girl who was from another caste. This girl was good natured and her respect to elders showed how well-cultured she was. They decided to get married. But the teacher’s son feared that his father would not approve of the match since she was from another caste. He told this girl, “We shall go and take permission from Baba, but don’t tell him anything about your caste.”


They went and prostrated themselves before the teacher. Then, the boy told his father, “Baba I wish to marry this girl.” The teacher looked at the girl with kindness, but remained silent. The boy got confused and blurted, “Baba she is a Brahmin.” The girl was shocked and said immediately, “Baba I am not a Brahmin. But I do love your son and wish to settle down with him.”


The teacher smiled and said, “Child, you are very much a Brahmin. A Brahmin is one who is on the path to Brahmn (the Ultimate One). One who tells the truth always without any fear is on that path. But tell me, will you marry this boy who is not on that path, who is not as courageous as you?”


The teacher’s son felt ashamed of his own behaviour and fell at his father’s feet and apologised. The kind and gentle teacher told his son, “To become a gruhasth (householder), one needs to be brave because life is not very simple. If you fail at the first step itself how will you succeed further?” The boy understood what his father was trying to teach him and he resolved to lead a Dharmic life from then on. The girl too sensed this and was happy to get married to him.


Who is WISE?


Once, a very knowledgeable Acharya came to Banaras to meet Sant Kabir. He could read the auras around people and things. He had heard a lot about Kabir and wanted to discuss a few spiritual and philosophical concepts with him. But he had never met Kabir before and did not know how he looked like. He landed up at Sant Kabir’s house and knocked at the door. 


Kabir’s wife opened the door and invited him in. She told him that Kabir had gone to the local crematorium because someone he knew had passed away just a while ago and his last rites were being conducted at the crematorium. The Acharya was in a great hurry to meet Kabir. So he asked for the direction to the crematorium and asked Kabir’s wife, “How will I recognise who Kabir is, from the crowd of people in the crematorium?” Kabir’s wife who was also a knowledgeable soul said, “Acharya ji, just look for the aura that everyone has around their head. The one with the wisest aura is Kabir.”


Acharya ji reached the smashaan bhoomi (cremation ground) and went in looking for Kabir. To his great surprise everyone had the aura of wisdom around them. He went back to Kabir’s house and told his wife, “Bhabhi ji everyone has the aura of wisdom around them. How do I recognise Kabir?” Kabir’s wife laughed and said, “Acharya ji, just wait till they come out of the smashaan … the one whose aura doesn’t disappear is Kabir.”


Right enough, to the great surprise of the Acharya, the moment people were 10 steps away from the crematorium, their aura disappeared. Only one person’s aura of wisdom did not disappear. That person was Kabir. The Acharya went up to him and introduced himself. Together they reached home. After their bath, when they sat down to eat, the Acharya asked Kabir about the mystery of the disappearing aura.


Sant Kabir smiled and said, “Everyone knows that this life is not eternal. Death will visit everyone sooner or later. But people remember this only when they see their own death or the death of another. In the crematorium all are wise enough to remember the temporariness of life and they resolve to do good deeds alone and become good human beings. They remember that everything is a Lila of Brahman. But once they are out of the crematorium, they forget all this and fall into the trap of Maya and behave like they are masters of their own lives. They forget all about Atma and Paramatma. Hence, the disappearing aura of wisdom.”


Do not be in a Hurry to DIE

Sometimes people lose all hope in life and try to die. They forget that this life is just a blip in the entire journey of their soul. Let us read about one such person and what happened to him …


In a place called Rampur there was this young boy called Govind. He was basically a nice chap but he used to feel sad and lose hope very fast. He used to feel depressed with every small thing that went wrong in his life and used to think that every problem was the worst. He followed rituals, went to Temples, did his prayers religiously hoping that all his problems would be solved.


Unfortunately, he failed his exams and got a good scolding from his father for not having studied well. He felt that his life was over and that he would never pass or be able to come up. He kept going to the Temple as usual to pray that God helps him pass his exams. Once, he attended a Satsang and heard the Swamiji saying that anyone who dies on Margashirsha Shukla Ekadashi (also known as Vaikunth Ekadashi) would enter Vaikuntha automatically. It was Mukti.


This sounded very good to him and he thought that he should give up his life on the coming Vaikunth Ekadashi day – he would get instant Mukti – no troubles in his life anymore. So on that day, he jumped into the river to commit suicide. The Narayan Dhoots (messengers) appeared immediately to collect his soul. But they knew that his appointed time of death had not yet arrived. They told him, “Son, you still have a long life ahead of you. This sorrow that you feel is temporary. Go back to your body and lead a good life. Study well & you will be successful. Don’t worry.” And they brought him to the shore and left him.


Govind was unhappy but what could he do? He went back home and studied hard. This time he passed his exams well and went on to study further. After his education was over, he took up a job. But unfortunately again, he did not like his job and try as he might, he could not get another job. He was dejected and once again decided to end his life. Again the Narayan dhoots appeared and told him, “Don’t do this. Human life is very precious, not to be wasted in feeling dejected and depressed. Go back and try to do something else other than a job. Your effort will not go to waste.” Again his attempt to give up his life was unsuccessful. But he was filled with hope this time.


With all devotion to Narayana, he decided that this time he would not let his new life go to waste. He started his own business, helped people around, married and had children. Life went by and now he was a happy, old man with many grandchildren at home. Suddenly one day he got a heart attack and it was time for him to die. He saw Yama dhoots (messengers of the God of Death) coming to take away his soul. He cried to them, “I have started enjoying life only in the last few years. I have been a Bhakt … why have you’ll come to take away my soul?”


The Yama dhoots replied, “Your life span was only this much. Your time of death has arrived. Yes, you have led a good life and been a devotee to Narayana. Had you not tried to take away your life yourself, thus insulting your gift from God, you could have had the opportunity to go to Vaikuntha today. Now come with us.” Saying this, they led his soul to Yamaloka.


Sri Rama, Jaya Rama, Jaya Jaya Rama

Sri Rama, Jaya Rama, Jaya Jaya Rama


A Mother’s HEART

This is a very famous, old story. There was this Mother who loved her only son very much. When her son Raju was very young, her husband had died. So Maa gave all her love and attention to her only child … she had to sacrifice a lot and work very hard to bring him up. Raju too was a very intelligent child and he worked hard to come up in life.


After his studies Raju got a very good job; his Maa was very happy. Now she waited for the day when her son would get married and bring a daughter into the family. Raju fell in love with a girl from a well-to-do family. The girl had been pampered so much that she expected everyone to fulfil her wishes, irrespective of whether they were sensible or not.


When Raju brought the girl home to meet his Maa, Maa put her hand on the girl’s head and blessed her. But the girl was very uncomfortable since Maa’s palms were wrinkly and rough. Later the girl told Raju that she would not marry him unless he left his Maa behind. Raju was in a quandary. He loved his mother, but he loved this girl more. 

The truth of life is that Youth doesn’t care for Old age much. So finally Raju decided to leave his mother behind and get married to the girl. But the girl was a mean one – she told him to get his mother’s heart if he wanted to get married to her. Actually she was just looking for an excuse to get rid of Raju, but Raju was so besotted with her that his wisdom was clouded.


Leaving behind all common-sense and humanity, Raju killed his Maa, plucked out her heart and took it to the girl. On the way he tripped and fell. He got hurt very badly and shouted, “Maa!” Immediately a voice came from the heart in his hand, “You did not get hurt very badly na beta? Take care of yourself.” It was his Maa’s voice. Too late, Raju realised the importance of his Mother’s presence in his life.


Adi Shankaracharya loved His Mother Aryaamba very much. He left for taking Sanyasa only after She had given Him permission to do so. His Maa too was a widow and she did not like the idea of her son giving up the pleasures of life and becoming a Sanyasi. But Adi Shankara persisted.


One day, a crocodile sneaked up on Him when He had gone to take a bath in the river Purna, and caught his leg in its mouth. Little Shankara cried out to His Amma & said, “Amma give me permission to become a Sanyasi so that I can leave this life as a Sanyasi.” There seemed to be no hope. Miraculously when Aryaamba gave Him the permission to become a Sanyasi, the crocodile disappeared. It was Maya. 


Before leaving little Shankara promised His Mother that He would come to her side on her deathbed. He kept His promise and helped Aryaamba attain Mukti. Though He was a Sanyasi, He only performed her last rites as He was her only child. In His Devi Aparadha Kshama Stotram, Adi Shankaracharya has written,


कुपुत्रो जायेत क्वचिदपि कुमाता न भवति


There can be Kuputra (fallen, disobedient son turning away from Mother), but there can never be a Kumaata (Bad Mother turning away the son permanently).


Jaya Jaya Shankara

Hara Hara Shankara


Author is a mother to three children and writes on Spirituality, Women Empowerment and National Affairs. Her articles are published on amongst others. She believes in the cause of the Indian Breed of Cows and is a follower of Shree Ramachandrapura Matha, Karnataka.


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