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How Many Van Do You Know
In Indian mythological history, there are several Van (forests or gardens). How many can you name from them?

(1) Nandan Van
Garden in Indra Lok. But on Earth most temples have a Nandan Van which grows flowers for the worship of the Deity there. In an epigraph belonging to Kulothunga III, there is a reference to the Constitution of a committee for the management of the Nandan Van of the Nataraaj Temple at Chidaambaram. The Nandan Van at Shree Rangam, known as Thirunandavanam or the Madurakavi Nandavanam, is situated on ten acres of temple land to the banks of the river Kaaveree. Fresh flowers are provided for the morning Poojaa and for the garlands. In fact the garland makers of the Madurakavi Nandan Van are celibate and dedicate their lives to the worship of Lord Ranganaath. In this Nandan Van, every tree is named after one of the great Vaishnav Alvar and Aachaarya.

The Nandan Van of ancient and medieval South India could be divided into five types:
--The first were exclusively floral gardens containing jasmine, pandanos, michelia, etc. The Veerasekhara temple at Thirukovilur and the Vedapuriswara temple grove are examples of this category.
--The second category of Nandan Van were the abode of fruit bearing trees.
--The third was a combination of the first two, such as the Nandan Van of the Shiv temple at Thiruvennainallur.
--The fourth category of Nandan Van contained a single species of flowering plant, such as an exclusive jasmine garden or Nandiavattam grove. These were cultivated both for the temple as well as for the market.
--The fifth category was an entire forest which was maintained as a Nandan Van. They were known to exist in the Paandyan and Vijayanagar periods.

(2) Ashok Vaatikaa
Garden in Lankaa, where Raavan kept Seetaa after abducted Her from Panchvatee. She stayed there till Raam recalled Her.

(3) Vrindaa Van
Forest near Mathuraa (UP). Krishn moved here to stay in His childhood. It grows lots of Tulasee plants.

(4) Kaamyak Van
Forest, where Paandav stayed in their exile period.

Who Saw Their Pitri Hanging in a Pit
There are two people who saw their Pitri hanging upside down in a pit --

(1) Jaratkaaru
His Kathaa comes in MBH, G-0-prolog/6  and  MBH, G-0-Prolog/10. He saw his ancestors hanging upside down in a pit and asked them "Who are you and jow can I help you?" They told him that they were his ancestors and they would not come out of this Hell until he would have a son. So to relive them from that pain, he marries Vaasuki Naag's sister who name was also Jaratkaaru and leaves her after impregnating her. Then Aasteek is born and saves the Naag burning in Janamejaya's Sarp Yagya by stopping it.

(2) Agastya Muni
This Kathaa also comes in MBH, g-4-Van/17, that Agastya Jee saw his Pitri hanging upside down in a pit. On asking they told him that they were longing for Agastya's son so that they can come out of this Hell.

Which Muni Asked King's Daughter in Marriage
We have sevaral Muni who asked kings to give their daughters to them and they had to bestow their daughters to thm in spite of their unwillingness. That is another matter that they were lived happily with them---

(1) Saubhari Muni
Saubhari Muni asked King Maandhaataa to give his daughter to him in marriage. Maandhaataa got stunned to hear such a request, but could not say no directly, so he told that him that he respected his daughters' opinion, so if any of his daughters wants to marry him, he had no objection. He had 50 daughters. Saubhari Muni was old and was lean and thin, but had lots of Yaugik powers. He got ready to go in the palace. On the way he changed himself into a young handsome young man, so as he arrived in the palace all 50 daughters of Maandhaataa got ready to marry him. Maandhaataa was again stunned, but had no choice. He married all the 50 daughters to him.

(2) Agastya Muni
Agastya Muni created a woman for himself and gave her to the King of Vidarbh. When the time came he asked his daughter's hand in marriage. With great difficulty he married her to him.

(3) Richeek Muni
Richeek Muni also went to ask the King Kushik his daughter Satyavatee and seeing his way of living Kushik said to him - "We are of Kushik Vansh that is why it is difficult to marry our daughters." and asked him to present 200 white horses with one black ear. Richeek Muni understood and brought such horses from Varun Dev and married Satyavatee.

(4) Chyavan Muni
Maharshi Chyavan was sitting in Samaadhi. An anthill covered him during his Samaadhi, except there were two holes at the place of his eyes. The King Sharyaati's daughter Sukanyaa came there and inserted a straw in both the holes, thus piercing the eyes of the Muni. Because of Muni's anger Sharyaati's army suffered with the blockage of its excretory system. Sharyaati understood that somebody has played with Muni. On knowing that it was done by his own daughter, he took her to him and asked for his forgiveness. But muni asked hi to marry his daughter to him, which he had to do in spite of his strong unwillingness.

(5) Kardam Rishi
Kardam Rishi did not ask his daughter from any king, but married Manu's daughter Devahooti at the order of Brahmaa Jee. When they wanted to have children Kardam Rishi built a large Vimaan (airplane) and enjoyed with her in that Vimaan in nine forms. They had nine daughters as a result of that.

Who Were Living in Golden Cities?
There have been some who have lived in golden cities, who were they?

(1) Raavan
The first name comes to our mind is of Raavan who was living in his golden Lankaa.

(2) Kamalaaksh
The second name comes to the mind is of Kamalaaksh. He was one of three sons of Taarakaasur. The other two sons were Taarakaaksh and Vidyunmaalee. All the three did severe Tap and got three moving cities in the sky in boon. These three cities or say planes (because they were like cities that is why they were called cities) were made of gold, silver and iron respectively for three brothers. Shiv Jee killed them and was thus named as Tripuraari.

(3) Kaalakeya
Kaalakeya Daanav were also living in a golden city which was given by Brahmaa Jee to their mother Kaalakaa as a boon to protect her sons.

Who Suffered Long Droughts
In our mythological literature there are some kings who have suffered from long droughts - some naturally and some because of their own mistake.

(1) Maandhaataa
It seems that Maandhaataa suffered a long drought of 12 years, but he forced rains to come into his kingdom, and Indra just stared at him
[MBH, G-4-Van/21]

(2) Rompaad
The first name comes to our mind is of Raajaa Rompaad. It is said that Raajaa Rompaad lied to a Braahman for the love of pleasure, that is why Braahman shunned him and that is how he could not perform his religious rites. This made Indra angry and he stopped rains in his country. Then he asked the way to get rains. Braahman and Ministers suggested him to invite Rishyashring and as he would enter his kingdom and would have rains, he should marry his daughter Shaantaa to him. He did so and he had rains and he married Shaantaa to him too.
[MBH, G-4-Van/19] [V-Raamaayan, 1/3]

(3) Shaantanu
Raajaa Shaantanu also did not have rains for many years. When he asked his Ministers and Braahman, they told him that since he had taken the kingdom of Hastinaapur without the permission of his elder brother, Devaapi, he was not having rains. if he takes the permission of his elder brother, then he could have rains. So he got ready to take his permission But his ministers had the doubt that he would permit him, so they went to him in advance and misguided him about his Dharm; and thus blaming him as A-Dharmee, they crowned Shaantanu as the King of Hastinaapur. Then only he had rains in his kingdom.

Who Got Divine Chariots
Some people got Divine chariots who were they...?

(1) Arjun
The first name comes to the mind is of Arjun. He got it from Agni Dev.

(2) Meghnaad
Meghnaad also got a Divine chariot which he used in the last days of the war. His chariot was Maayaavee, he could hide it or appear it.

(3) Sahastrabaahu
Sahastrabaahu or Arjun also got a Divine golden chariot from Dattaatreya. His chariot could go anywhere without any obstruction.



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Created by Sushma Gupta on 5/27/04
Updated on 02/10/13