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Story No 24-Yayaati

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24-Raajaa Yayaati

Once upon a time, long long ago, there was a king named Yayaati. He was one of the ancestors of Kaurav and Paandav. He was the son of Raajaa Nahush (Pururavaa's grandson).

Once he was out in the forest for hunting. He got thirsty, so he looked for a well. He found a well. That well was dry but he found a girl in that dry well. So he took her out. She was Devayaanee - the daughter of Daitya Guru Shukraachaarya. Daitya Raaj Vrishparvaa's daughter Sharmishthaa had pushed her in this well out of a quarrel. She didn't have any clothes on her body so Yayaati gave his cloth to wear. Then she expressed her desire to marry him. Yayaati knew that this marriage was not according to Dharm but he took it as his destiny and he married her.

As a result of the quarrel, Devayaanee asked Raajaa Vrishparvaa that Sharmishthaa should serve her the whole life with her friends. So as Devayaanee married to Yayaati, Sharmishthaa also went with her along with her friends. Shukraachaarya Jee warned Yayaati not to take Sharmishthaa to his bed.

In due course of time Yayaati and Devayaanee had a son. When Sharmishthaa saw Devayaanee's son, she also wished to have a child, so she also expressed her desire to have a child to Yayaati to have a son. Yayaati considered it according to Dharm so they also had a son. After some time Devayaanee had three sons and Sharmishthaa had two sons. When Devayaanee came to know about this she got very angry and went to her father's house.

When Yayaati heard of her leaving him, he also followed her. He explained the situation to Devayaanee and Shukraachaarya Jee but Shukraachaarya Jee did not listen to him and said - "For me my daughter is everything, if she is not happy, I cannot do anything." And he gave him Shaap that "he should get that kind of old look in which a person looks ugly". Yayaati told him that this would affect his daughter also, then he said "OK, you can exchange your old age with somebody, if at all somebody is ready to give you his or her youth." Yayaati called his all sons and asked them to give him their youth in exchange of the old age Shukraachaarya gave to him, but nobody agreed upon this except his youngest son Puru, Sharmishthaa's daughter.

Then he exchanged his old age with the youth of his youngest son and enjoyed the worldly pleasures for long time. One day Vairaagya arose in his mind and he gave his youth back to his son, took his old age back from him and went to forest. His wives also went with him.

He has also contributed hymns to Rig Ved Sanhitaa



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Created by Sushma Gupta on January 15, 2002
Modified on 06/04/13