Episode # 126 – The “Ashtaka-Yayaati Samvaadham” – An important life & management lesson!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed a very important point narrated by Bhagawan Krishna wherein He clearly explains how we can continue our “Bhakti-Maarga” in the current birth, from where we left in the previous birth. This is an emphasis that whatever “Dharma” we perform in our day-to-day life doesn’t get erased off, just because we’re getting trapped into the worldly “Maya”. Of course, as long as we are part of the “Samsara”, it is very natural for all of us to get carried away by various facets of the “Maya” at various times. However, Bhagawan gives us a lot of exceptions in this regard. This is where He explains and motivates us to continue performing our “Dharma” even though we might have got carried away. We should keep trying again and again and focus our mind towards “Dharma”, and this is the important point that Bhagawan is stressing upon. 

This is exactly what happened to King Yayaati as well. We’ve seen in our earlier episodes as to how King Yayaati enjoyed his youthful days by going behind women. Not satisfied by this, he even went to the extent of borrowing his son’s youthfulness to enjoy for another thousand years! Even then, King Yayaati’s path of “Dharma” amidst the “Maya” earned him the “Svarga Lokha”. Even after his tenure at the “Svarga Lokha” gets over, Bhagawan blesses King Yayaati through Indra to be dropped down at a place which was full of Maharishis. This automatically becomes a “Satsanga”, and this would eventually pave the way for King Yayaati to continue his “Dharma” from where he had left in his previous birth, isn’t it? This is the point that we’ve to understand from this entire incident and I’m stressing upon this event more because readers should understand this very carefully and very well. We should never get demotivated if we somehow slip off from the path of “Dharma” due to whatsoever reasons. We should always keep trying again and again, and the more effort we put, Bhagawan would hand-hold us and take us to “Vaikunta”. We should remember this point as we move on further. 

Thus, coming back to what happened to King Yayaati here, as per his request, Indra pushes him towards the place where Sage Ashtaka and the others were sitting. As King Yayaati was falling down thus, Sage Ashtaka stops him then and there and asks thus, “Oh! Who are you? Why are you falling down like this from the skies? You’re appearing as if you’re equivalent of Indra in the “Svarga Lokha”! Tell me your background!” King Yayaati explains the reason why he was falling down, and with this, there is a detailed section here that is called “Ashtaka-Yayaati Samvaadha”, which is nothing but an interesting conversation between Sage Ashtaka and King Yayaati! This has enormous amounts of life and management lessons that we can learn. So let us see this in detail now. 

As King Yayaati keeps falling down, he introduces himself to Sage Ashtaka thus, “Oh Sage! I’m none other than King Yayaati! I’m the son of King Nahusha!” As we proceed further, we would be witnessing something called as “Nahusha-Charitra”. We shall witness this when the context comes. But for now, let us continue with this conversation between King Yayaati and Sage Ashtaka. King Yayaati continues thus, “Oh Sage Ashtaka! I was happily residing in the “Svarga Lokha” until my “Punya Karma” got exhausted. Post that, I was pushed by Indra downwards towards this world, so that I again earn more “Punya-Karma” and ascend back to the “Svarga Lokha”. 

As Sage Ashtaka listens to King Yayaati’s answer, he became thoughtful! He thinks within himself thus, “Oh wow! Till today, I was thinking that if one reaches the “Svarga Lokha” he / she never comes back to this world again! But now, looking at this King Yayaati, this perception of mine seems to be faulty! There is always this possibility of coming back from the “Svarga Lokha”!” We might wonder here as to why Sage Ashtaka is thinking in such a foolish way! Isn’t Sage Ashtaka a great sage? Doesn’t a great sage knows that we cannot live permanently at the “Svarga Lokha”? Why is he asking this then? There’s an interesting perspective to this question, and let us understand this perspective in the next episode! Stay tuned! 🙂 

Published by Dr. Jeayaram

Holds a PhD in Management Psychology from Universite Paris Saclay, Paris, France. Also an Asst. Professor of Human Resources management at Bharatidhasan Institute of Management (BIM) Trichy, India A professional South Indian classical musician (singer) performing concerts. Through this blog, I'm trying to bring out the richness of Indian culture & values and I request your support and feedbacks in making this humble effort a success!!

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