rangavadhoot


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Shri Guru Leelamrit
(The Nectar of Teacher’s Sport)
by

Pujya Shri Rang Avadhoot

Put into English by:

Shri Shantilal Thaker, M.A. B.T.,
Vidya-Bhasker

 

Page 7

Chapter IV – SHANDILI 

There was the city of Pratishthan on the banks of the
river Goda. In it there was living a Brahmin, Kaushik by
name. Shandili was his wife. She was a chaste woman. He got
infatuated with a prostitute. As a result he contacted a
disease. There was pus oozing out of his limbs. He became
deformed. He had wasted all his money on that prostitute.
Once he went to the house of that prostitute. She despised
him and turned him away. He returned home. Shandili welcomed
him gladly. She joined her hands in salutation to him. She
put him in the bed and began to serve him tirelessly. She
changed his pus-soiled clothes now and then, gave him a soft
towel-bath. He was surprised to see his wife’s wonderful
devotion, although he had neglected her all the time. He
apologized to her and praised her. She replied that she was
not doing anything wonderful. Everybody minded himself or
herself. He was not at all different from her, separate from
her. Months passed away, and by her single-minded attendance
on his sickbed and punctilious service, he became better.
Then he began to say, ” Look, you are wonderful, but I
cannot forget the moonlike face of that my beloved
prostitute. You have, no doubt, given me a new lease of
life, but today I am very eager to meet her. She gave me
such sex-pleasure as I have never found with you. Oh, if I
could go to her house ! ” Shandili replied, ” Lord, don’t
worry. I will take you to her tonight on my shoulders.” When
night came, she took out a little casket in which she kept
her ornaments she had brought from her father’s house. She
took it with her, tied in the fringe of her sari. She softly
and gently carried Kaushik on her shoulders. She was careful
that he received no jerk or jolt. She avoided streetlights
so that her husband’s prestige may not suffer.

Reaching to the prostitute’s house, she gently put her
husband on the sofa of the drawing-room. She went within,
and giving the ornaments to the prostitute, she requested
her to receive her husband kindly that night, for he was mad
to see her that night. Kaushik was admitted to the
prostitute’s inner apartment. He spent an hour with her, and
came out panting, exhausted. Shandili allowed him to rest on
the sofa for ten minutes, and then putting him on her
shoulders, left the prostitute’s house. It was midnight.

Now on the way a strange thing was happening. A thief had
stolen away from the royal palace the jewellery-box of the
king. The policemen and guards got his scent and chased him.
In a hurry he dropped the box near Mandavya, the disciple of
the sage Markandeya. He was sitting in meditation outside
the city in a solitary place. The policemen thought him to
be the thief, for the jewellery-box was found near him. He
was taken to the king, who ordered him to be put on a stake.
He was put in the public square on the piercing point of the
stake in the part of his abdomen, and his body was made to
revolve on it, so that the piercing point would slowly and
painfully go deeper in his body. While Shandili was
carrying-Kaushik on her shoulders, his foot touched the body
of sage Mandavya with force, and the revolution became
quicker and therefore more painful. In extreme pain, the
sage Mandavya gave out a curse, ” He, who by his touch was
the cause of this excruciating pain to me, shall not see
sunrise tomorrow.”

Shandili came home with her husband Kaushik. She uttered
forth a resolve, ” Oh Sun-god, hear my words. If I am a
chaste woman, if I have not seen another man’s face with a
lustful desire even in dream, if I am faithful to my husband
in thought, word and deed, you will not rise except when I
give you order to rise again.” The next morning the sun did
not rise. It was all dark. Birds, beasts, human beings did
not know how to perform their daily duties. Sacrifices came
to a standstill.

Nobody could tell the time. All were puzzled. Eight days
passed in that state o things. Gods went to the Creator and
complained about the chaos. God Creator replied, ” A chaste
woman’s power is very great. Even the sun has to obey h
orders. Go to Sati Anasuya, the mother of Dattatreya.
Request her to approach Shandili and to persuade her to
withdraw her orders. Only then will the sun and people be
happy.” The Gods acted according to the Creator’s advice.
Anasuya went to Shandili and said, ” Sister, look at the
piteous condition of all the beings of the world. A Sati – a
chaste woman should have compassion for all in her heart
Withdraw your orders, and let the sun rise.” Shandili
replied, ” I am fortunate today to have your holy sight,
mother. But the sage Mandavya has cursed my husband
unjustly. He should have cursed me to death, for it was my
fault. I was carrying my husband on the shoulders. I was in
a hurry to go home to avoid public gaze and scandal. I would
have succumbed to death willingly. But this injustice I
could not bear.” Anasuya said, ” Don’t worry. Let the sun
rise. I will bring Kaushi your husband, back to life by my
power of chastity. Rely on my words.” Shandi withdrew her
orders. The sun rose, and Kaushik dropped down dead in the
bed.

Sati Anasuya took Kaushik’s body in her lap and spoke, ”
If I am a Sati, an have never looked upon another man with a
lustful eye even in dream, let Kaushi arise, come back to
life.” Kaushik yawned, and stretching his arms, arose. He
thanked Shandili for giving him second time a lease of life.
Shandili said, ” No, fall at the feet of mother Anasuya, who
has given life to you and to me, both She is the holy mother
of Lord Dattatreya, the great Yogeshwar.” Kaushik fell at
Anasuya’s feet. She blessed him and Shandili both. Kaushik
lived thereafter for a full hundred years.

The Sage Mandavya was saved from the stake by gods and
other sages, who went to the king and told the whole story
about Kaushik and Shandili. The sage Mandavya had to suffer
for a short while the excruciating pain of the stake, for
while in play, as a child, he had pierced a small bird with
a thorn. He had to pay so dearly for that sin.

 

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P.P.
Shri Rang Avadhoot Gurumaharaj,Nareshwar. Slideshow
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Nilisha’s trip to Gujarat
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