Of greedy men and whirling wheels -2

Read the previous part here…

All the wants of man get fulfilled only through his honest efforts. Even what is called fate, or destiny, is a quality of man. In fact, destiny is another name of effort.

क्लेशस्याङ्गम् अदत्त्वा सुखम् एव सुखानि नेह लभ्यन्ते ।
मधुभिन् मथनायस् तैर् आश्लिष्यति बाहुभिर् लक्ष्मीम् ॥ ३१ ॥

kleśasyāṅgam adattvā sukham eva sukhāni neha labhyante |
madhubhin mathanāyas tair āśliṣyati bāhubhir lakṣmīm || 31 ||

One cannot obtain happiness without proper effort. Even Shri Vishnu, the slayer of the Asura Madhu, embraces Lakshmi with arms that have been tired after churning the ocean.

तस्य कथं न चला स्यात् पत्नी विष्णोर्नृसिम्हकस्यापिमासान्श्चतुरो निद्रां यः सेवति जलगतः सततं – Even Ma Lakshmi will end up leaving Sri Vishnu if he does nothing but sleep for months on end. The best of wealth also leaves the best of men, if he does not put in proper effort in maintaining it.

“And so”, they said “please help us. Give us a way in which we can earn money – any way that you think will be good enough. They say that you have divine powers…we are also resolute and determined to move ahead in any given situation. It is said…

महान्त एव महताम् अर्थं साधयितुं क्षमाः ।
ऋते समुद्राद् अन्यः को बिभर्ति बडवानलम् ॥ ३४ ॥

mahānta eva mahatām arthaṃ sādhayituṃ kṣamāḥ |
ṛte samudrād anyaḥ ko bibharti baḍavānalam || 34 ||

Only the great can achieve great things. After all, who else but the mighty ocean can bear the Vadavagni?

One of the five natural forms of Agni (Vedic god of Divine illumination). This form, known as Vāḍava-agni, represents Agni’s most fearful form remains hidden under the sea, ever ready to destroy the world.

Bhairavānanda asked them for some time alone. He did some intense meditation on their problems, and after a few days, called them back inside.

“These are four वर्ति (Varti, or pills) that I have made after intense meditation”, he said, holding out four pills in the palm of his hand. “These pills will help you achieve what you have set out to obtain. Go towards the Himalayas. As you walk, where these pills fall, mark those spots and dig there. You will find wealth for sure. Take that and return home.”

The four youth prostrated before the yogi, accepted the varti, and set out for the Himalayas.

They walked for many days. One morning, as they continued on their journey, one of the pills fell from one of the youth’s hands. He immediately marked the spot and started to dig. Soon he found large deposits of copper. “Let’s take as much copper as we can, and return home”, he said to the others excitedly.

The others replied “Are you stupid? How much copper would you be able to carry back? Even if we all carry as much copper as we can, it will not help us get rid of our poverty. Let’s leave this and go further.”

He said “In that case, you all carry on. I will not go any further.” He then packed as much copper as he could carry, and started on his way back home.

The other three carried on walking deeper into the mountains. In some time, the second pill fell from another youth’s hand. He started to dig, and found huge deposits of silver. “Let’s take as much silver as we can, and return home”, he said to the others excitedly.

“Don’t be lazy”, said the other two. The first found copper, and now you have found silver. If we go deeper inside, we will surely find gold! Silver will not help us become very rich. Let’s continue walking!”

The two young men continued walking, while the third gathered as much silver as he could, and returned home.

In a few hours, the third pill dropped. The young man dug, and found huge deposits of gold. “I told you, there will be gold further ahead!” he said with excitement. “The other two lost out on so much wealth! Nothing can be better than gold. Come, let’s take as much as we can, and return home.”

The fourth youth, whose name was VairāgyaKumar (the young man who has renounced the world), looked at him and said…

to be continued…