Monthly Archives: June 2020

Vipra Narayana

Vipra Narayana was one of the twelve azhwars (Sri Vaishnavite Saints) belonging to the 8th century. He was born in Tirumandangudi, Tamilnadu. As a child he was very bright, intelligent, and very sattvic in nature. He mastered all the scriptures, was well versed in Sanskrit, good in poetry and music. As he grew up, his devotion to Lord Ranganatha also became more intense. He decided to dedicate his entire life to the service of the Lord and remained a celibate. 
Once he went on a pilgrimage to the divine vaishnava kshetras and came to Srirangam. He was so overwhelmed by the divine darshan of Sri Ranganatha, that he decided to settle there. He cultivated a beautiful flower garden – Nandanavanam. Every day he would make beautiful flower garlands and offer them to the Lord in the temple. This became his daily devoted service. 

One day, two sisters who were temple dancers, after their performance in front of the king were going back when they saw this beautiful flower garden. They also saw the young Vipra Narayana whose face shone with a divine aura. They tried to disturb his serene mind, but could not. The younger sister, Deva devi who was very beautiful felt humiliated because he could not be tempted by her beauty and charm. She challenged her sister and vowed to break his celibacy. 

Next day she came dressed in simple attire posing as a great devotee of Sri Hari. She engaged in conversation with Vipra Narayana and convinced him that she was very pious. Every day she would go and help him to look after the garden, make garlands etc. As months passed by, his mind slowly changed and he started giving her more and more attention and yielded to all her charms. He neglected the garden, garland-making, going to the temple – he had completely become a slave to her and her beauty. Ultimately she had won the challenge! The very next day she walked out taking away the little wealth he had. Vipra Narayana was in a state of shock. However he was so infatuated by Deva devi that he went pleading to her, but she closed the door on him. Every day he would go to her and come back disappointed. He was completely a shattered person. It is at this time that the Lord of Compassion decided to reclaim his long-lost devotee. 

One morning a stranger identifying as Vipra Narayana’s servant knocked at Deva devi’s door and said that his master had sent him to give her a gift — a beautiful golden vessel. She was so happy to receive such a priceless gift and when Vipra Narayana came she allowed him into her house. He did not understand her sudden change but was extremely happy. Next day in the temple of Sri Ranganatha, the priest found one of the golden vessels in the sanctum missing. They started searching for it and finally they found it with Deva devi. It was reported to the king. On questioning, she said that it was Vipra Narayana’s gift to her. On the other hand, he was shocked to see her take his name, because he was totally unaware of this transaction. He pleaded innocence, but the king had him imprisoned. He then realized his mistake, his slavery to her and his total neglect of the Lord’s seva.

The day prior to the day of punishment, early in the morning, the Lord, Sri Ranganatha came in the king’s dream and told him that Vipra Narayana was innocent and it was He, the Lord who had taken the guise of a sevak and handed the golden vessel which belonged to the temple to Deva devi. The Lord told the king to release Vipra Narayana from the prison because he is totally innocent and specifically told the king that Vipra Narayana was one of His greatest devotees. In the morning, when the king narrated this to one and all, and asked Vipra Narayana to forgive him. Vipra Narayana had completely forgotten the Lord, but the Lord still acknowledged him as His greatest devotee! With the Lord’s grace and blessings, he completely dedicated himself to the service of the Lord. With great humility, he called himself “Thondaradippodi Azhwar” which means “the dust at the feet of the bhaktas”. His compositions on Lord Ranganatha are exquisite poetry dipped in the honey of devotion!

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I Am delighted to inform you all that I have authored a book of stories for children titled: ” Bharatiya Katha Vaibhava -1″.

The book was released for Deepavali. This book features 25 unique and popular short Stories with beautiful illustrations from our Epics, and from the life of our Saints, Sages and Rulers… This is indeed a wonderful gift for children especially to be given as a prize for competitions! You can order in bulk too. Orders are welcome for libraries, schools etc..
Please note that Ebook kindle versions and paperback version [B&W illustrations] can be bought online..Find the links..

Zorba Store:- https://www.zorbabooks.com/…/bharatiya-katha-vaibhava…/

Amazon:- https://www.amazon.in/dp/9390011663?ref=myi_title_dp

Amazon (outside India) : https://www.amazon.com/Bharatiya-Katha-Vaibhava-SHREEDARSHAN-K-ebook/dp/B08N53PM3B/

Note: To buy the full colour version book (paperback with colour illustrations) please contact the author , as they are only being printed on author’s request .Those who wish to avail of this offer, please contact/message me.(Especially if you want a full color version book, please inform at the earliest..)

For bulk orders and discounts on B&W version and for colour version books you can contact.. For orders please whatsapp : 9739003467 Email: naadopaasana18@gmail.com

Yaksha Prashna – 4

[This post is in continuation of the post – Yaksha Prashna – 1 , 2 and 3 where Lord Yama in the form of a yaksha asks questions to Yudhisthira (eldest among the Pandavas). In the 1st post 4 sets, in the 2nd post 7 sets and in the 3rd post 6 sets of questions & answers were posted. In this post, 6 sets of questions & answers have been posted. The next post on Yaksha Prashna will be on next Wednesday. Link for Yaksha Prasna – 1: http://atomic-temporary-25401030.wpcomstaging.com/2020/06/03/yaksha-prashna-1/ , For post 2 : http://atomic-temporary-25401030.wpcomstaging.com/2020/06/09/yaksha-prashna-2/ , For post 3 : https://atomic-temporary-25401030.wpcomstaging.com/2020/06/16/yaksha-prashna-3/ ]

18] Yaksha Prashna : For what ultimate purpose does one give away in charity to the Brahmanas (pious)? To the Artists of dance and theatre? To the Workers? And to the Kings (rulers)?

Yudhisthira Answers : It is for the sake of dharma that charity is given to the Brahmanas. It is for the sake of fame and glory arising out of patronage that wealth is given to Artists. It is for their livelihood that money is given to the Workers. And it is for sake of fear of attack that tributes are given to the Kings.

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19] Yaksha Prashna : What is that by which the world is enveloped? What is that factor which prevents one from discovering oneself? What is the reason because of which friends are forsaken? What is it that obstructs one from attaining the Higher State (Mukti)?

Yudhisthira Answers : The world is enveloped by Maya (ignorance). It is spiritual ignorance that prevents one from realizing oneself. It is because of greed that friends are forsaken. Attachment or moha is the obstacle on the path to the Higher State.

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20] Yaksha Prashna : What is it that obstructs progress and growth for an individual? For a country? What makes Shraadha (the rituals performed for ancestors) fruitless? When does a Yagna become null and void?

Yudhisthira Answers : Miserliness in thought and action obstructs progress for an individual. The absence of a good leader cannot make a country grow and become prosperous. Shraadha performed by a priest devoid of knowledge and practice is fruitless. A yagna is null and void when it is performed without charity.

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21] Yaksha Prashna : What is the path to be taken in life? What is the source of water? What constitutes annam (prosperity)? And what is detrimental (poison) to life? What is the right time for Shraadha (Pitr karya)?

Yudhisthira Answers : The path walked by men of character and wisdom is the path to be taken by all. The clouds (sky) are the source of water. Cattle or Wealth constitutes annam (prosperity). Cowardice is detrimental (poison) in one’s life. The right time for Pitr karya is when an individual well-versed in the sastras and performing noble actions is available for officiating the rituals.

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22] Yaksha Prashna : What are the characteristics of asceticism? What are the characteristics of one who has his mind under control? What are the prominent features of forbearance? And that of modesty?

Yudhisthira Answers : To be rooted in one’s own inherent nature (swadharma) is asceticism. Self-restraint is the characteristics of one who has controlled his mind. The prominent features of forbearance is the capacity to endure all pairs of opposites like pain and pleasure. Modesty is refraining from all evil and impure acts.

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23] Yaksha Prashna : What constitutes knowledge? What constitutes tranquility? What is supreme compassion? What is meant by the term straight-forward?

Yudhisthira Answers : An insight into the divinity within each one of us constitutes real knowledge. The peaceful state of the mind is tranquility. To act for the well-being of all is true compassion. Equanimity and balance of the mind is to be straightforward.

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Devi Kanyakumari

Banasura was a powerful rakshasa who undertook severe penance to gain the boon of immortality. Pleased with his tapas, Lord Brahma appeared in front of him and asked him what he wanted. He asked for immortality. The Lord said that it was not possible to grant immortality, but he could chose how death should confront him. He thought for a moment and said that his death should be at the hands of Devi in the form of Kumari (virgin girl). He knew that the Mother of the Universe, Parvathi was wedded to Lord Shiva and therefore according to the boon she would not be able to kill him. Brahma granted him the boon. Thinking that he was now invincible, he started torturing and killing all the sages and rishis.

All the devatas gathered together and invoked Parashakti in Her Kanya form. Devi appeared as a young girl – Kanyakumari, also known as Sri Baala. They handed over to Her all their weapons. Kanyakumari descended down to the southern most tip of the subcontinent and sat down in penance to propitiate Lord Shiva. After years of rigorous tapas, Lord Shiva was pleased and decided to marry Her as per Her wishes. The auspicious time for the marriage chosen was brahma-muhurtha. She was ready in all her bridal attire. Lord Shiva started from Suchindrum, his divine abode.

All the devatas now got worried. If Shiva marries Kanyakumari, then it would be impossible for Her to destroy the Rakshasa as per the boon. They approached Sage Narada and asked him to somehow stop the marriage. Narada immediately became a cock, and when the marriage party of Lord Shiva was almost approaching the venue, he crowed. A cock crows always announcing the break of dawn. Assuming that He was late and the muhurtha had lapsed, Shiva returned back. Kanyakumari waited in vain. She became very angry at what had happened. All the food items turned into sand. The tiny pebbles resembling rice and the different shades of sand found on the shore is attributed to this. Kanyakumari again sat down in penance. 

Meanwhile Banasura came to know of a young girl in contemplation. He came and saw Kanyakumari. He became infatuated with Her beauty and asked for Her hand in marriage. Kanyakumari denied, but he insisted. In his anger he attacked her and a fierce battle ensued between the two. Finally She killed Banasura with the divine chakrayudha. The devatas expressed their happiness and sang in praise of Her. She decided to make that place Her permanent abode. 

Even today, Kanyakumari stands in penance with a japa-mala in Her right hand. The unique feature about Her is the nose-ornament that She wears. Its glow and brilliance is incomprehensible. Mother Kanyakumari stands facing East. The light from her nose-ornament is so powerful and focussed that sailors used to mistake it for light-signals from the shores and approach the mainland. Their ships used to get wrecked because of the rocks in that region. Hence the eastern entrance is closed and pilgrims enter from the northern entrance even today. The eastern dwara is opened only on special occasions.

The rock on which Kanyakumari performed penance before killing Banasura is the same rock on which Swami Vivekananda sat for three days (25-27 December 1892) and meditated before he came up with the plan and resolution for National Revival.

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Padmapada – Adi Sankara’s disciple

Sanandana was a very bright and intelligent boy from the southern part of Bharat. After he finished his initial studies in his hometown he decided to lead an ascetic life and travelled all the way to Kashi to meet a Guru under whose guidance he can progress further in his spiritual pursuits. At that time Adi Sankara was in Kashi giving discourses on Advaita Vedanta.

Sanandana was drawn towards Sankara. He offered his respectful prostrations and asked the Acharya to take him as a disciple and initiate him into sanyasa. Seeing the keenness of the young aspirant, the Master agreed and took him as his disciple. He was Sankara’s first disciple. Sanandana stayed with his Guru serving and learning from him. Sanandana was extremely brilliant and absorbed the knowledge three times faster than anyone else. Sankara was highly pleased and appreciated his disciple’s intellectual abilities. However the other students misunderstood and thought that the teacher was more favourable to Sanandana and became jealous. Sankara understood what was going on in their minds, and decided that it was time for them to see for themselves the greatness of Sanandana. 

One day, when Sanandana was on the other side of the river Ganga washing clothes, suddenly Sankara called out to him, “Sanandana”. No sooner had he heard his name being called out, Sanandana who was on the other side of the river just started walking towards his Master. The actual path was round the river which would take some time. All that was in the mind of the disciple was that his Guru had suddenly called him and he should be there as quickly as possible. Sanandana was walking on the waters of the river. Normally the water currents would have washed him away. But lo! The moment he stepped onto the water, a full blown lotus sprang up to support his foot. When he put the next step forward, another lotus appeared to support his foot. Sanandana had no idea that he was walking on water. In his anxiety to reach his Guru quickly, he was almost running on water with every step being supported by a lotus! The other disciples who were watching this miracle were dumb-founded. They understood that it was nothing but the faith and devotion that Sanandana had for his Guru which made it possible for him to walk on water!

Sanandana came and prostrated to the Acharya. Sankara smilingly acknowledged. All the others were in a state of utter shock. It was only when Sankara pointed out to him the river behind, that Sanandana looked back and saw that he had literally walked on water. At every step, since a lotus (padma) had appeared below his foot (pada), Adi Sankara gave him the name PADMAPADA : “feet supported by lotus”.

Padmapada was one amongst the four principle disciples of Adi Sankara. He was in charge of the Govardhan Mutt at Puri in the eastern part of Bharat.

"Apart from Him, I don't exist," declares the devotee of Sree Narayana. "Everything of me is already laid at the Feet of the Lord. I do not exist, so I cannot worry over anything. It is all now His worry..... Narayana; Narayana --- it is all yours". - Swami Chinmayananda

For daily updates of posts on Telegram you can join the group : https://t.me/BharateeyaSamskruti

On whatsapp: https://chat.whatsapp.com/Ce7yZ5yAAq3C3k9pYHsA7T

I Am delighted to inform you all that I have authored a book of stories for children titled: ” Bharatiya Katha Vaibhava -1″.

The book was released for Deepavali. This book features 25 unique and popular short Stories with beautiful illustrations from our Epics, and from the life of our Saints, Sages and Rulers… This is indeed a wonderful gift for children especially to be given as a prize for competitions! You can order in bulk too. Orders are welcome for libraries, schools etc..
Please note that Ebook kindle versions and paperback version [B&W illustrations] can be bought online..Find the links..

Zorba Store:- https://www.zorbabooks.com/store/children/bharatiya-katha-vaibhava-1-stories-for-children/

Amazon:- https://www.amazon.in/dp/9390011663?ref=myi_title_dp

Amazon (outside India) : https://www.amazon.com/Bharatiya-Katha-Vaibhava-SHREEDARSHAN-K-ebook/dp/B08N53PM3B/

Note: To buy the full colour version book (paperback with colour illustrations) please contact the author , as they are only being printed on author’s request .Those who wish to avail of this offer, please contact/message me.(Especially if you want a full color version book, please inform at the earliest..)

For bulk orders and discounts on B&W version and for colour version books you can contact For orders please whatsapp : 9739003467 Email: naadopaasana18@gmail.com