In a small Indian town named
Mrunalkund, there lived a learned priest named Shribhuti.He and his
wife named Saraswati, had only one daughter named Vegvati.Theirs
was a highly honored family.
One day, a devout and
knowledgeable ascetic arrived at the town. People started flocking
to pay their respects to the ascetic. The ascetic's glory increased
day by day. It is a pitiable trait of humans that they sometimes
suffer being jealous about others. One grieves not only over what
one lacks, but also over others people's better fortunes. Who can
help them come out of such suffering? Hearing all the praise and
honor being showered on the ascetic, poor Vegvati burned with
jealousy. Ultimately, she could bear it no longer and started
telling people, "This priest is a fraud - you ignore a worthy
person such as a Brahmin and run to worship a saint who is always
on the move, but you are not aware of his character."
People tend to have interest in
listening to the negatives of others. They have more interest in
gossiping than speaking positively about others. As Vegvati was out
to demean the saint, she left no stone unturned. She started
spreading false rumors about the saint. All this cheap talk spread
like wild fire across the town, people even believed it and
refrained from going to the saint thereafter. Upon knowing this the
saint was deeply hurt and he thought, "How can I bear it if due to
me the honor of the divine deities is at stake?" He took an oath
that "I shall give up food and water until the day these
allegations are reversed." Saying this he sat in penance. Because
the ascetic was truly pure, a celestial deity came to his help.
Vegvati became very ill and was in unbearable pain. Many different
types of medication were tried, but none could cure her and her
suffering increased by the day. She realized her folly and thought,
"All this is a result of the false rumors I spread about a pure
saint," and she deeply repented her actions. She asked for
forgiveness from the saint, in the presence of fellow villagers by
saying, "You are as holy as the fire. I tried to demean you solely
out of my jealousy. You are very merciful. Please forgive me. I
shall never repeat such a mistake again." Due to her heartfelt
repentance, the celestial deity cured her of her agony. On being
cured of her illness, she listened to religious preachings and took
renunciation from worldly life. On the other hand, people praised
the ascetic. Vegvati took her rightful place in heaven on being
completing her life span in heaven, Vegvati was reborn as a
princess. Due to her misdeeds of disgracing the ascetic in her
previous birth, she too had to suffer being disgraced and exiled.
As a result she led her life in solitude in the forest.
friends, did you see how risky it is to speak negatively of others?
One should never say or listen to negative things, especially about
saints. And when you realize your mistake, you should repent on it.
On repenting heartily, all offenses are forgiven.
So pray every day, "Oh Dada Bhagwan, give me the infinite
inner strength not to criticize, offend, insult or commit
undesirable mistakes against or disrespect any living preacher,
teacher or saint."