Monday, April 27, 2009

ACK-119: Syamantaka Mani

ACK #81 (591)
The story of the Syamantaka Gem is available in the Puranas such as the Bhagavata and the Vishnu. It shows how powerful of the curse Ganesha is.
(This story is related on the fourth day of the bright half of the lunar month, Bhadrapada, the sixth month of the Indian Calendar. Lord Krishna observed this fast to redeem himself from the stigma of telling a lie. )
In good old days, Lord Krishna built a beautiful city named Dwarka amidst the sea. There lived a man named Ugra who had two sons. Their names were Satrajit and Prasenjit (Prasena).
Briefly, Satrajit worshipped the Sun god for a long time. The god was pleased with him & gifted Syamantaka Gem. The God disappeared after gifting him the gem. Satrajit put the gem around his neck. When he entered Dwarka, everybody was surprised to see the heavenly gift. It was dazzling like sun. This gem produced gold eight times of its weight when needed. Satrajit did not part with it with king Ugrasen even when Krishna asked for it saying it would be safe with Him. Prasena, the brother of Satrajit went out hunting wearing the jewel but was killed by a lion. Jambavan (Jambavanta) of Ramayana fame killed the lion and gave it to his son to play with.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

ACK- 118: Tapati - The Daughter of the Sun God

An out of print ACK # 327

The sources of this story are the Purana & the Mahabharata. The period is considered as Treta Yuga according to old Indian literature & mythology - PBC.

In India, as elsewhere, the folk of the spirit world might woo or be wooed by impressionable mortals. A Gandharva related to Arjuna, the Pandava prince, by whom he was defeated in single combat, the "charming story", as he called it, of King Samvarana (the Lunar Dynasty) and the fairy-like Tapati, a daughter of the sun god, Surya.

Tapati was of all nymphs the most beautiful; she was "perfectly symmetrical" and "exquisitely attired"; she had "faultless features, and black, large eyes"; and, in contrast to an Apsara, she "was chaste and exceedingly well conducted". For a time the sun god considered that no husband could be found who was worthy of his daughter; and therefore "knew no peace of mind, always thinking of the person he should select". One day, however, King Samvarana worshipped the sun, and made offerings of flowers and sweet perfumes, and Surya resolved to bestow his daughter upon this ideal man.