Shiv Jee | Stories-17
21-Shiv and Pushpdant
Read a story about Pushpdant
The following is a very brief account of the some of the main events in the life of Vararuchi as told in the Kathaa Sarit Saagar written by Som Datt. It emphasizes the divine ancestry and magical powers of Vararuchi. Since it is related to Shiv and Paarvatee, that is why this story is given here.
Once Paarvatee pleaded Shiv to tell her a story which nobody had heard before. So after much persuasion, Shiv told her a story of Vidyaadhar. Nobody could hear that story that is why Paarvatee asked Nandee Jee to guard the door. When Shiv was telling the story, a trusted Gan of Shiv named Pushpdant appeared at the door and asked Nandee to let him enter, but Nandee refused. So using his special powers Nandee entered the room unseen and heard the whole story. Pushpdant told that story to his wife Jayaa and Jayaa, in turn, told the same story to Paarvatee. Paarvatee got very angry at Shiv, she said to him - "You told me that you were telling a story which was not told to anybody else except me, but Jayaa knows it." Shiv meditated and knew that Pushpdant overheard it and told it to his wife Jayaa. Hearing this Paarvatee filled with rage and she cursed Pushpdant to take birth on Prithvi. Both Pushpdant and Jayaa fell on Paarvatee's feet and asked her when her curse would end? Paarvatee said - "A Yaksh named Suprateek, who has been made a Pishaach by the curse of Kuber, is residing in the Vindhya forest under the name of Kaanaabhooti. When you will see him, and calling to mind your origin, tell him this story; then only you will be released from this curse."
Thus Pushpadant was born on Prithvi under the name of Vararuchi in the city called Kaushaambee in the house of a Braahman named Som Datt and Vasu Dattaa. Vararuchi was also known as Kaatyaayan. At the time of his birth there was a heavenly anouncement that because he will have interest (Ruchi) in the best (Var means the best) thing, that is why he would be known as Varauchi. It was also announced that he would be a world-renowned authority on grammar. Vararuchi was divinely blessed with a special gift - who could get anything by heart by hearing only once. In course of time Vararuchi became a student of Varsh along with Indra Datt and Vyaadi. Though Vararuchi was defeated by Paanini in a test of scholarship, Vararuchi by his hard work excelled Paanini in grammar. Later Vararuchi became a minister to King Yogaanand of Paataliputra.
Once he went to visit a shrine of Durgaa. Goddess Durgaa, being pleased with his austerities, ordered him in a dream to go to the forests of the Vindhya Parvat to behold Kaanaabhooti. Proceeding to Vindhya, he saw that Paishaach Kaanaabhooti, in stature like a Shaal tree, surrounded by hundreds of Pishaach. When Kaanaabhooti had seen him, he respectfully clasped his feet. Kaatyaayan sat down immediately and spoke to him - "You are an observer of the good custom, how have you come into this state?" When Kaanaabhooti finished his story, Vararuchi remembered his own origin, and exclaimed like one aroused from sleep - "I am that very Pushpadant, hear that tale from me." and Vararuchi told all his history from his birth at full length. Vararuchi then went to the tranquil site of the hermitage of Badaree. There he, desirous of putting off his mortal condition, resorted for meditation with intense devotion to that goddess and she, manifested her real form to him, and told him the secret of that meditation which arises from fire, to help him to put off the body. Then Vararuchi, having consumed his body by that form of meditation, reached his own heavenly home.
Created and Maintained by Sushma Gupta
Created on March 15, 2003 and Updated on February 12, 2013