Friday, May 24, 2024

A selfless king of Vrepalle: Nanda

17. Thiruppavai stories

Father of Krishna, Nanda is a very good king who knows the difficulties of all people,He used to give clothes to clothe-less, water and food to the needy without expecting anything in return. King used to rule as if he is like father and mother of each and every person. He performed his duty to provide for basic needs of the people. He donates on his own and never denies to anyone.

Also read: Rama first kills ego of Raavana

Importance of cloth: Ambarame

In this 17thPashuram Goda deals with Cloth, Water and Food. When you have it in abundance, you do not value the cloth. Draupadi knows it. Her five husbands, great warriors could not protect her; all other elders like Dhritarashtra, Bhishma and Drona become helpless spectators, while Dussasana under the command of Duryodhan was disrobing her. Blind king knows what was happening, but keeps quietblinded by love for his son and jealousy towards Pandavas. Vikarna, younger brother of Duryodhana, questions, but he is snubbed. Vidura, the incarnation of Dharma, the Prime Minister of Kaurava King objects and advises the King to abandon Duryodhana for this anti-Dharma conduct. The King was silent. Vidura walks out.  Helpless Draupadi does not surrender to Duryodhana, but completely surrenders to Krishna with her mind and heart. She prays for His Honour to protect her Honour. She recites the following Shloka.

శంఖ చక్ర గదాపాణే ద్వారకా నిలయాచ్యుత గోవింద పుండరీకాక్ష రక్షమాం శరణాగతిమ్

Miraculously, Krishna gives her abundant clothes. Dussasana gets exhausted pulling the clothes out, fails and falls down.

Also read: Beauty of Knowledge attracts Krishna


Second word is Tanneere, means ‘water’. Jaladaanam is a great deed.  There is an incident involving Sri Krishna. During the Kurukshetra war, the horses were in dire need of water. They were tired and not in a position to move further. Pandavas had no clue out. Then Sri Krishna uses the Vaarunasthra for to swell up from the underground. The thirst of not only His horses but of all the other horses was quenched. He uses weapons not to kill the rivals but only to help all living creatures. Learn positive use of destructive weapons.


Next word used by Goda is Shore… which means food.  Munis perform Yanja to invoke God and to feed Him with Havya.Little Krishna is around those Rishis performing Yajna, but they do not recognize Him. The Yajna goes on beyond the noon. The Gopala Gopikas complain of hunger, and they approach Rishis who refuse to give food until Yajna is completed. Krishna takes them along and approaches the wives of those Munis. No mother can resist when a lovely boy with divine looks and ever-smiling face is seeking food. They simply give it without bothering about the completion of the Yajna defying the rules and command of husbands. All children along with Krishna were fed happily. Krishna smiles at Munis who are still bothered about their empty formalities, without recognizing the real God. Every day, Vaishnavas recite a shloka at the time of offering of food, in which they remember the Muni’s wives who fed Krishna with love and affection. “Yaa preetirmuni patni bhakti rachiethe…” Those wives are more blessed than their husbands.

Also read: Bharath was sure that Ram will not return

Duryodhana and Durvaasa

Duryodhana once offered food to Durvasa Muni and his disciples in a sumptuous manner. Pleased by this, Durvasa asked him to seek a boon. Duryodhan wanted him to bless Dharma Raja similarly. He did this with malicious intention that Yudhistira would surely fail leady to angry curse of Durvasa. But a different thing happened. As he had huge team with him in exile, Yudhistira find it difficult feed all of them. He prayes Surya, who granted an Akshya Patra. It used to feed any number of people every day.  But there is a limitation, that it cannot give any more food for the day, once it is was cleaned. After cleansing the Akshaya Patra, Durvasa approaches them. It was difficult for Pandavas to feed Durvasa’s team. There was no way other thanpraying to God. Draupadi prays to Krishna to help them out. Krishna arrives, asks her to fetch Akshaya Patra and miraculously finds one grain of rice somewhere and eats it. When the ruler of whole universe feels satiated with one grain, the whole universe feels fully-fed, and so were the members of team of Muni.

The Cloth, Water and Food are the forms of Brahma. Ambaram also means the sky. Getting them is not easy, especially in difficult and testing times. God must be kind enough and the seeker of these three must also be giver.

This 17th song invokes the Parabrahmam through its inner meaning.

Also read: Journey to see Tirumala is a pleasure

Madabhushi Sridhar


Prof. M. Sridhar Acharyulu
Prof. M. Sridhar Acharyulu
Author is Dean, Professor of law at Mahindra University at Hyderabad and former Central Information Commissioner. He published a number books in English and Telugu.


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