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Monday, August 24, 2015

Legend of Vishwamitra : Trishanku

Defeated and humiliated twice, Vishwamitra had now realized the force of brahmmanatv and a 'Brahmmrishi'; whole world capitulates in his feet including the devas, such is his efficacy.
An accomplished king, a connoisseur in war science, yet he failed against 'Brahmmrishi' Vashishth. He knew what he wanted and only Brahmm Dev would grant that.
Vishwamitra started penancing  rigorously, after thousand years Brahmm Dev revealed himself and honored him with 'Rajrishi', the one who had won over the world of kingly-sages. Brahmm Dev vanished but Vishwamitra was disappointed, he expected more,  'Brahmmrishi' was the term his heart expected. This was just the beginning, Vishwamitra determined himself for a rigorous journey.

I know it might be hard to digest; a thousand year austerity. But that's the way it is, as far as I have understood; the lifestyle we adhere, the conduct, the environment around, these all factors combine and make it possible. A significant factor contributing to it is YOG(yes, not yoga) re-energizing and purifying the body and soul. And so, Vishwamitra continued his penance.

Between all this was happening; destiny played one more card, an incident that enhanced Vishwamitra's efficacy universally.
There was a noble suryavanshee king Trishanku who aspired for heavens, but with his physical form. He decided to consult sage Vashishtha, the wise sage softly rejected his plea.
Disappointed, the king then went to the sage’s sons who like their father denied his wish.
The denials raised his desperation, he tried to greed them by offering treasure. Such a conduct enraged the sons of Vashishth as the king's conduct was amoral. They cursed him to become a chandaal, profane. The impact of the curse was so powerful that Trishanku’s personality faded instantly and his face became dull, he had black torn clothes over his body, he became scared.
Restless and outcast; he thought to approach someone who is more or equally influential like Vashishth. Vishwamitra’s enmity to Vashishth was now known to the world and so he went to the former’s refuge.

Vishwamitra felt bad for him, he promised Trishanku to grant his wish. He thus arranged few sages and asked them to perform a yagya in order to fulfill Trishanku's wish.
As the rituals started, Trishanku’s body started elevating towards heavens. Looking at such unethical act infuriated Indra, he had to stop it right now otherwise a wrong message would had been sent to the world and so he instantly reversed Trishanku’s body and he started falling back to Earth.

Falling down, Trishanku shouted for help; Vishwamitra haulted his body in the middle of the sky, he was now hung upside down. Looking at the pity condition of Trishanku and his failing efforts, Vishwamitra decided to create a whole new set of constellation which had a new set of sapt-rishis. He angrily announced to create a new swarglok which will have a new Indra, or may be without any Indra, but it would be there for sure.

Indra went to Vishwamitra and explained him that sending Trishanku to Indralok along with his body is against the ethics and the policies laid by the almighty and so was creating a new constellation.

Vishwamitra realized his mistake, he then calmed Indra and insisted him to let his efforts not go in vain as he had promised Trishanku for that.
Indra said, ‘whatever you have created will be there in existence and Trishanku will be lying there bowing down in respectable position similar to devas.
As the legend goes on; Trishanku is still placed in the artificial Indralok, alone. The boon that became a curse, in a way.

Trishanku's story has a lot to teach, even in today's life. No doubt he was a noble king, who lived up to his every responsibility of a king, but, that didn't gave him a right to aspire for an impractical wish, even if he was a suryavanshee. In spite of his status, he was delivered to justice. Now that was something so right about those times.
Today, when I look around, I see Trishankus everywhere. Politicians, bureaucrats, corporates, babas of different sects; a slight power in their hand and they are ready to manipulate the system, the society in their accordance. They don't even shy away in compromising the ethics, the foundation; undaunted about the consequences keeping the system in their pockets.
The only difference; Trishanku, the king was brought to justice and today the culprits have all cards in their kitty viz. politricks, communal, human-rights and so on.
Still people say we have progressed a lot, but on stake of what? You reason, that's all.

Coming back to Vishwamitra, after the Trishanku episode, he went to Pushkar and continued with his ascesis. We will continue the legend to the next post.

"Aspirations; be careful with those, if noble they will emancipate you, if corrupt you will be condemned."

'सियाराम'

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4 comments:

  1. I liked that you corrected the word- true, the word is Yog and not Yoga.

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    Replies
    1. Indeed, we must imply with the actual.

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  2. good blog post.. where do you read about Vishwamitra's story... where is the original text (sanskrit version) ... your reference ?

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    Replies
    1. Thank you for the appreciation, although commenting in a anonymous' guise isn't appreciable, that too when the blog-post is solemn.
      I learned about this legend of Vishwamitra through our very legends, i.e.- Valmiki Ramayan and Mahabharat, in hindi.

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