MISCELLANEOUS

Exceptional sage

CHENNAI: The actions of great sages and saints must not be judged by the common man from his standards. For one, their spiritual stature sets them apart from others; another reason is that by dint of their spiritual power they are not bound by time and hence they can know whatever happened in the past and also foresee events to come. So they are visionaries whose actions are guided by their intuition.

The Ramayana describes that Sage Viswamitra asked Dasaratha to send Rama with him to protect his sacrifice. The sage should have handed over Rama and Lakshmana back to the king after he completed it. But he did not, and instead took them to Mithila which led to the marriage of Rama and Sita. Was the sage then reneging on his word?

In his discourse, Sri B. Sundar Kumar said Viswamitra was an exceptional personality whose spiritual attainments were legion and so he had a reason for what he did. He was the seer who envisioned the Gayatri, which is the foremost Vedic mantra. The sage’s request to Dasaratha to allow Rama to accompany him to guard his sacrifice was only a pretext for he wanted to bring about the marriage of the Divine couple as expiation for separating Harischandra and Chandramati. The sage taught Rama and Lakshmana the use of many missiles and Mantras. He showed them many sacred spots along the Ganga and explained their significance. One of them was about the descent of the Ganga to the Earth as a result of Bhagiratha’s austerities.

King Sagara was a king of Ayodhya who obtained a boon from Bhrighu and sired Asamanjas and another 60,000 sons through his two wives. When he performed the Ashwamedha sacrifice, Indra became jealous and stole the sacrificial horse, and tied it in Sage Kapila’s hermitage. The 60,000 sons of Sagara who went in search of the horse were burnt to ashes by Kapila for their insolence. Asamanjas’s son Amsuman brought the horse back to complete the sacrifice and told Sagara about the fate of his uncles. It was to liberate their souls that the effort to bring the Ganga to the Earth was begun by Amsuman, continued by his son Dilipa, and finally accomplished by Dilipa’s son Bhagiratha.

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