Category Archives: Mahabharata

Pancha Prayag – Its Significance

[This post features the significance of Pancha Prayag. The significance of Prayag Raj will be posted next in the blog!]

PRAYAG : Ya means moving; Ga means knowledge. Yag or Yaga (or Yagna) means to move ahead with knowledge. Pra means special or total or complete. Therefore, PRAYAG means to move forward in life with the right knowledge or spiritual knowledge.

PRAYAG also means confluence of two or more factors. In our inner world of thoughts or in the outer world of things and beings, it is not easy for any two factors to come together and move ahead. If it is possible, then it is a whole-hearted cooperative endeavour, because the two factors coming together can have different distinctive features and characteristics. Hence, Prayag also denotes diminution of ego.

In the Himalayan region, wherever two river streams come together, merge and then proceed, it is called as PRAYAG. It is indeed a cooperative endeavour and a mahayagna because the two river streams come from two different directions, move through different terrains and have different characteristics (depth, velocity, mineral content and even colour). Inspite of their different identities, they reconcile so beautifully and merge together and proceed further as a larger river. There is a silent, profound and constant message to us: “Inspite of all differences, it is possible to realize the oneness in all diversity, multiplicity and plurality. It can be in any field like, knowledge, culture, tradition etc. Wherever two or more factors harmoniously meet and proceed further, a greater purpose in life is fulfilled”. And the message of transcending individual identity becomes more pronounced and intense and reaches our inner depths easily because of the very pure and conducive, natural and divine Himalayan environment. Hence every Prayag is considered as a pilgrim centre – a strong reminder of what one has to accomplish within oneself.

This is beautifully demonstrated in “Pancha Prayag” – the five sacred places in the Himalayan region of Uttarakhand. At each Prayag, two river streams from different directions meet, merge and proceed further. From the higher region downwards, they are: VISHNU Prayag where Alaknanda meets Dhauliganga. NANDA Prayag where Alaknanda meets Nandakini. KARNA Prayag where Alaknanda meets Pindar. RUDRA Prayag where Alaknanda meets Mandakini. DEV Prayag where Alaknanda meets Bhageerathi. From Dev Prayag onwards, the confluence of these five rivers is called as GANGA. She carries with her the characteristics – the speciality and uniqueness of all the rivers!

The route through the Pancha Prayag is supposed to have been taken by the Pandavas and Draupadi during their Swargaarohana (ascent to heaven). The Pandavas represent an individual with his five sense-organs under restrain. Draupadi represents the mind under perfect control. The uphill path through Pancha Prayag denotes the spiritual path to the State of Enlightenment. Prayag or Yagna (moving ahead with spiritual knowledge) alone can take the seeker to the State of Absolute Perfection.

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Krishna’s Gurudakshina!

Krishna and Balarama accompanied Akrura and came to Mathura at the behest of Kamsa. All the evil-minded tyrant’s plans to kill Krishna were in vain. Finally Krishna killed Kamsa. The Devatas were delighted, the Gandharvas sang and Apsaras danced in sheer joy and rained down showers of flowers. Ugrasena, Krishna’s grandfather was released from prison and reinstalled back on the throne of Mathura. Vasudeva and Devaki were overwhelmed to see their children Krishna and Balarama after so many years of longing and hoping.

Vasudeva then approached his family Guru, Gargacharya and in accordance with the sastras, had the Upanayana performed for both of them. Balarama and Krishna then undertook the vows of Gaayatra (for learning Gayatri-mantra), Praajaapatya (for commencing the study of Vedas) and Braahma (for consistency till the end of Vedic study) under the instructions of their Guru. Gargacharya was well aware about the divinity of Krishna and Balarama. He spoke to Vasudeva and told him to send his sons to Guru Sandeepani, one of the greatest Acharya’s who was residing in Ujjain. Vasudeva agreed, and both Krishna and Balarama proceeded to Ujjain from Mathura. 

Krishna and Balarama reached the hermitage of Guru Sandeepani, offered their prostrations and introduced themselves to him and prayed that they be accepted as his disciples. Sandeepani knew in reality who they were, and whole-heartedly accepted them as his disciples. Krishna and Balarama reverentially and respectfully served their teacher with all devotion. The best of the Acharyas, Guru Sandeepani taught them the four Vedas and their six auxiliary branches, the Upanishads, the Science of Archery along with the Mantras, Dharmasastras, Nyaya, Rajaneeti and other branches of knowledge. And in just sixty four days they mastered all the sixty four Arts.

After their studies in the Gurukula, before leaving, they asked their Guru what they could offer as their Guru Dakshina. An overwhelmed Sandeepani  who was aware of the Lord’s infinite glory asked Krishna to restore back his child whom he had lost in the ocean at Prabhasa kshetra. Krishna promised to bring back the child, and the brothers reached Prabhasa. The presiding deity of the ocean immediately manifested himself and asked in what way he could serve the Lord. Krishna asked him for Sandeepani’s son who had been swallowed up by the waves. 

Samudra told Krishna that he had not taken away the child. A rakshasa by name Panchajana who lived in the ocean in the form of a conch had taken away the child. The Lord immediately plunged into the waters, fought the rakshasa and killed him. The body of the rakshasa – Panchajanya which was in the form of a conch was taken by the Lord. However the Lord did not find his Guru’s child there. Then Krishna and Balarama went to the city of Lord Death called Samyamani. Krishna announced his arrival by blowing the Panchajanya. Lord Yama immediately came forward and offered his prostrations to both of them and with folded hands asked in what way he could serve the Lord. Lord Krishna said, “bring the son of my Guru Sandeepani whom you have carried away due to the child’s own destiny”. Yama immediately brought the child and presented him to Krishna. The Lord took the child with him to his Guru’s ashram. Sandeepani was overjoyed to get his son back from the jaws of death. 

Krishna again requested his Guru to ask for anything else as a boon. Guru Sandeepani who was more than fulfilled told Krishna, “O my child! can any desire remain unfulfilled for a preceptor who has you as his disciple. You both have indeed fully paid the debt to your teacher. Return back to your home. May your divine glory purify all. May your knowledge ever remain fresh in your memory here as well as hereafter.” With prayerful prostrations and carrying with them these blessings of Guru Sandeepani, Krishna and Balarama reached Mathura.

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I Am delighted to inform you all that I have authored a book of stories for
children titled: ” Bharatiya Katha Vaibhava -1″.

The book was released for Deepavali. This book features 25 unique and
popular short Stories with beautiful illustrations from our Epics, and from the
life of our Saints, Sages and Rulers… This is indeed a wonderful gift for
children especially to be given as a prize for competitions! You can order in
bulk too. Orders are welcome for libraries, schools etc..
Please note that Ebook kindle versions and paperback version [B&W
illustrations] can be bought online..Find the links..

Zorba Store:- https://www.zorbabooks.com/store/children/bharatiya-katha-vaibhava-1-stories-for-children/

Amazon:- https://www.amazon.in/dp/9390011663?ref=myi_title_dp

Amazon (outside India) : https://www.amazon.com/Bharatiya-Katha-Vaibhava-SHREEDARSHAN-K-ebook/dp/B08N53PM3B/

Note: To buy the full colour version book (paperback with colour
illustrations) please contact the author , as they are only being printed on
author’s request .Those who wish to avail of this offer, please contact/message
me.(Especially if you want a full color version book, please inform at the
earliest..)

For bulk orders and discounts on B&W version and for colour version
books you can contact For orders please whatsapp : 9739003467 Email: naadopaasana18@gmail.com

Yaksha Prashna – 3

[This post is in continuation of the post – Yaksha Prashna – 1 , 2 , where Lord Yama in the form of a yaksha asks questions to Yudhisthira (eldest among the Pandavas). In the 1st post 4 sets and in the 2nd post 7 sets of questions & answers were posted. In this post, 6 sets of questions & answers have been posted. The next post on Yaksha Prashna will be on next Wednesday. Link for Yaksha Prasna – 1: http://naadopaasana.co.in/2020/06/03/yaksha-prashna-1/ , For post 2 : http://naadopaasana.co.in/2020/06/09/yaksha-prashna-2/ ]

12] Yaksha Prashna: What traverses its path all alone? What is it that is born again after its birth? What is the antidote to hima (snow)? What is the most expansive field?

Yudhisthira Answers: The Sun traverses its path across the sky all alone. The moon is born again (moon waxes after waning) . Fire is the antidote to hima. Earth is the most expansive field.

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13] Yaksha Prashna: What is the highest dharma (law of living)? What represents fame/glory? What denotes the highest standard of life? What defines the state of happiness?

Yudhisthira Answers: The ultimate dharma is in realizing one’s own true nature. Real glory is in being charitable. Truth is the highest standard of life. Moral and ethical values define the state of happiness.

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14] Yaksha Prashna: Who represents one’s own identity? Who is the companion provided by the laws of karma (destiny)? What is the prime support of all life? What is the prime duty of a human being?

Yudhisthira Answers: Son (off-spring) represents one’s own identity. Wife is the companion bestowed by the law of karma (destiny). Rain (water) is the prime support for all life. Charity is the prime duty of a human being.

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15] Yaksha Prashna: What is the greatest fulfillment? What is the noblest wealth? What is the biggest gain? What denotes the state of supreme happiness?

Yudhisthira Answers: Being in the state of mindfulness is the greatest fulfillment. Knowledge of the scriptures is the noblest wealth. Good health is the biggest and most important gain. Contentment represents supreme happiness.

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16] Yaksha Prashna: What is the greatest virtue? What dharma yields good results? What is that by controlling which man never experiences misery? What is that bond which never breaks?

Yudhisthira Answers: Absence of cruelty is the greatest virtue. The practice of the injunctions of the sastras yields good results. Mind is the instrument by controlling which man never experiences misery. Bonding with the wise never breaks. 

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17] Yaksha Prashna: By the giving up of what does one become endearing? By giving up what does one become devoid of sorrow? By giving up what does one become more prosperous? By giving up what does one become contented?

Yudhisthira Answers: Absence of pride makes one more endearing. Absence of anger leads to a sorrowless state. Renunciation of desire leads to real prosperity and fullness. Absence of greed leads to contentment.

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Krishna visits Ayodhya on Sri Ramanavami to meet Hanuman!

When the purpose of His avatar in Treta Yuga was over, Lord Rama returned back to his abode – Vaikunta. Before folding back His manifestation, the Lord consoled and promised Hanuman that He would Himself come and give him darshan in Dwapara-Yuga.

To remove the burden of Mother Earth, to protect the virtuous, to annihilate the wicked and to re-establish dharma once again on the surface of the earth, the Lord once again manifested in Dwapara-Yuga as Vasudeva Krishna. The Sage Narada once paid a visit to Dwaraka to meet the Lord and His consort Sri Rukmini. He told Sri Krishna that Hanuman spent all his time meditating on a mountain and was waiting for the Lord to give him darshan. Narada even mentioned that he met Hanuman and told him to go Dwaraka and have darshan of Lord Krishna. Hanuman very well knew that the Lord who was Rama in Treta-Yuga had now manifested as Sri Krishna. Hanuman told Narada that he was only a humble servant of the Lord and it would be inappropriate to meet the Lord without the Lord Himself calling him, and he would wait till he gets a call from his Lord.

When Krishna heard these words from Narada, He decided to fulfill the wish of His dear devotee Hanuman. Sri Ramanavami was approaching. On this auspicious day every year, Hanuman would visit Ayodhya in disguise as a brahmana, offer puja to the Lord and would himself serve prasad (food) to all. Lord Krishna decided to visit Ayodhya to meet His dear devotee Hanuman. Narada had a doubt if Hanuman would recognize the Lord as He was Krishna in this birth. The Lord smiled and asked Narada to accompany Him and check for himself.

On the auspicious day of Sri Ramanavami, Krishna and Narada disguised as ordinary citizens went to Ayodhya to witness the grandeur of Ramanavami celebrations. They saw Hanuman disguised as a brahmana offering his puja and prayers to Lord Rama. He completed his puja, and it was time to distribute prasad (food). Hanuman asked all the devotees to sit in a line, and started serving food to all. In the midst of the devotees was Lord Krishna and Narada disguised as ordinary citizens. When Hanuman bent down to serve food to Lord Krishna, he saw the Lord’s feet and for a moment forgot everything and became motionless. Even though the Lord was in disguise, there was no mistaking – he for sure recognized his Beloved Lord’s feet! With tears rolling down his eyes he fell at the Lord’s feet.

He asked the Lord what mistake he had done that the Lord Himself had taken the trouble to come to Ayodhya. The Lord now gave darshan to Hanuman as Lord Rama. Rama said that it was Hanuman’s bhakti which drew him to Ayodhya. Indeed, the Lord had kept up the promise He had given to His devotee!

A true devotee in his Supreme Love recognises everything as the play of the "Lord-of-his-heart".... everything is to him sacred and divine. - Swami Chinmayananda

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I Am delighted to inform you all that I have authored a book of stories for children titled: ” Bharatiya Katha Vaibhava -1″.

The book was released for Deepavali. This book features 25 unique and popular short Stories with beautiful illustrations from our Epics, and from the life of our Saints, Sages and Rulers… This is indeed a wonderful gift for children especially to be given as a prize for competitions! You can order in bulk too. Orders are welcome for libraries, schools etc..
Please note that Ebook kindle versions and paperback version [B&W illustrations] can be bought online..Find the links..

Zorba Store:- https://www.zorbabooks.com/…/bharatiya-katha-vaibhava…/

Amazon:- https://www.amazon.in/dp/9390011663?ref=myi_title_dp

Amazon (outside India) : https://www.amazon.com/Bharatiya-Katha-Vaibhava-SHREEDARSHAN-K-ebook/dp/B08N53PM3B/

Note: To buy the full colour version book (paperback with colour illustrations) please contact the author , as they are only being printed on author’s request . The discounted price of the full colour version book is Rs 300/-.Those who wish to avail of this offer, please contact/message me.(Especially if you want a full color version book, please inform at the earliest..)

For bulk orders and discounts on B&W version and for colour version books you can contact For orders please whatsapp : 9739003467 Email: naadopaasana18@gmail.com