What is destined…you will surely obtain…

Read the previous part here…

The guard had a daughter called Vinayavatee (the one who is disciplined). She was a pretty young girl, and was waiting for her own lover, who she had invited to spend the night, since she knew that she would be alone at home. This was her room, and she had been lying on her bed, waiting for her lover.

Vinayavatee saw the door opening, and since it was dark, and a moonless night, she mistook Prāptavyamartha for her lover. Eager to please him, she pulled him to the bed, embraced him and made love to him passionately…

She lay next to him, with a smile on her face, savouring the past hour that they had spent together. Vinayavatee turned to him, and in a soft voice, said “My love! There is no cause to fear today – my father is out and will not return tonight. We had such a wonderful time…why are you so quiet? Why don’t you say anything? Did you not like me tonight?”

He replied “प्राप्तव्यमर्थं लभते मनुष्यः – A man surely gets what is destined for him.”

Vinayavatee was stunned. “Who is this??” she thought to herself. “Oh, what have I done! This is not my lover, it is someone else! This is what happens when one acts without thinking.” Tears flowed from her eyes, as she wept thinking of the sin she had just committed. She then got up, wiped the tears from her face, and threw Prāptavyamartha out of the house.

Prāptavyamartha started to walk away from the guard’s house, and reached the highway. It was nearing sunrise, and in the distance, a wedding procession, complete with drums and a music band, was on it’s way to the venue nearby. The bridegroom was VaraKeerti (the one blessed with fame) and he was dancing the most. Prāptavyamartha caught up with them, and started to walk along.

At the other end of the road, waited the bride BhagyaVatee (the one who is fortunate) -a merchant’s daughter. She sat on a huge stage, decorated with thousands of flowers, and BhagyaVatee herself was adorned with gold and precious jewels from head to toe. The bridal reception party eagerly awaited the wedding procession…

They arrived in an hour – Prāptavyamartha was with them. The reception party garlanded the baaraatis – and put a tilak on VaraKeerti. As he climbed up to the stage, they heard a commotion nearby.

An elephant, who had gone berserk, was seen running toward the stage. It had just killed it’s mahout – and as it neared the stage, it trampled many people under its feet. Everyone started to run helter-skelter…VaraKeerti was the first to jump off the stage and escape. The bride, not knowing what to do, stood numb with fear.

Seeing her freeze, Prāptavyamartha jumped onto the stage, held Bhagyavatee’s right hand, and stood next to her. He stared at the elephant, and his stern glance somehow had a calming effect on the animal. It stopped just ahead of the stage, turned around, and walked away.

As the commotion died down, the people started to return to the stage. VaraKeerti pushed around till he reached in front, and climbed onto the stage, only to see Prāptavyamartha holding Bhagyavatee’s hand. The auspicious time for the wedding had just passed, and VaraKeerti was enraged. “You are a cheat!” he thundered, as he looked at the merchant. “You promised me her hand in marriage, and now have got her married off to someone else!”

The merchant looked confused. “My son, I don’t know what happened. I too ran away when the elephant came charging in.” He looked sternly at his daughter. “Why are you quiet? Tell us what happened!”

Bhagyavatee replied “This person here saved me from death. And so I will not marry anyone else, as long as I am alive. He is my husband now.”

VaraKeerti started to argue with the merchant. His relatives and friends too joined in. The relatives from the bride’s side resisted. A huge fight was about to break out, and a huge crowd gathered. Someone informed the city-dwellers, and they all came to witness the proceedings. Sensing a law and order problem, the king called for his guards as soon as he heard the news, and decided to set out to see what the problem was. Chandravatee accompanied him. In the meanwhile. Vinayavatee had also reached the place, along with her neighbours and the rest of the city.

“Tell me, without fear, as to what actually happened”, said the king to him. Everyone waited with bated breath, eager to know what had transpired.

He replied “प्राप्तव्यमर्थं लभते मनुष्यः – A man surely gets what is destined for him.”

Chandravatee remembered what had happened, and said – देवो ऽपि तं लङ्घयितुं न शक्तः – even God cannot change his destiny.

Vinayavatee said – तस्मान् न शोचामि न विस्मयो मे – And so I don’t worry or feel surprised.

Listening to all of them, BhagyaVatee said –  यद् अस्मदीयं न हि तत् परेषाम् – that which is mine cannot belong to others.

The king, and everyone else, didn’t know what to say….

It took more than three hours, but at the end of it, the king came to know the entire sequence of events. He had taken Chandravatee, Vinayavatee and Bhagyavatee aside, one by one, and enquired as to what had transpired. At first they were afraid, but the king had reassured them that he would not punish them. More than anything, he was curious as to what had happened!

Finally, after coming to know of everything, and in a bid to save face, since his own daughter was involved, the king forgave Prāptavyamartha, and offered him his daughter’s hand in marriage. He also gifted him a thousand villages, and said “from today, you are my son.” In a few days, Prāptavyamartha was crowned the king, in the presence of all the elders and advisors of the king.

The guard also offered Prāptavyamartha his daughter in marriage. And since Prāptavyamartha was already married to Bhagyavatee, he now had three beautiful wives, a kingdom, and all the pleasures that life had to offer. He brought his parents and relatives to the city, gave them sanctuary in the royal palace, and lived happily ever after…

“And that is why I say”, concluded Hiranyaka,

प्राप्तव्यम् अर्थं लभते मनुष्यो देवो ऽपि तं लङ्घयितुं न शक्तः ।
तस्मान् न शोचामि न विस्मयो मे यद् अस्मदीयं न हि तत् परेषाम् ॥ १११ ॥

prāptavyam arthaṃ labhate manuṣyo devo ‘pi taṃ laṅghayituṃ na śaktaḥ |
tasmān na śocāmi na vismayo me yad asmadīyaṃ na hi tat pareṣām || 111 ||

One surely gets what is destined for him.Even God cannot change his destiny. And that is why I do not worry when I don’t get something, nor feel surprised when I get something unexpectedly. I will surely get what is destined to be mine, and what isn’t mine, I will surely not get it.

“And so, after experiencing all the good and the bad that the world had to offer, I felt disillusioned with that place and decided to come here with LaghuPatanaka. This, in short, was the cause of my loss in interest and dispassion.

to be continued…

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