In the previous episode, we had witnessed the commencement of a huge feud between Sage Vasishtaachaarya and Sage Vishwamitra, who was a Kshatrya at that time. He was never a sage and he did not know what it takes to be one. As Vishwamitra was on a hunting spree along with his army men, the entire fleet started to feel hungry and thirsty. It is at this time, Vishwamitra spots Sage Vasishtaachaarya’s Ashram along with the “Kaama-Dhenu” or “Nandini” cow that was standing at the corner of the ashram. Upon Vishwamitra’s request of feeding all of them, Sage Vasishtaachaarya, with the help of the Nandini cow, was able to feed all of them with sumptuous food and water. With this, all of them were extremely happy. However, Vishwamitra had an unwanted thought in his mind thus – If this cow was able to feed all of them so easily, how would it be if this cow was in his kingdom? It can feed thousands of people, can’t it? What is the use of this cow standing in this ashram amidst the dense forest? Hence, with this idea in mind, Vishwamitra wanted to take it along with him to his kingdom, and proposed this to Sage Vasishtaachaarya.
However, even as Vishwamitra asked thus, Sage Vasishtaachaarya did not get angry. He calmly replied to Vishwamitra thus, “Oh Vishwamitra! Whatever you say appears noble to me. You can feed hundreds and thousands of people with the help of this cow. However, if you do so, you are doing it to enhance your personal name and fame. This cow is so sacred that none can use it for their personal benefit. I’m using this cow to obtain all possible things to do my “Tapas”, “Shraadha-Kaarya”, and other important spiritual offerings that need to be done for the “Devas” and “Pitru-Devatas”, which in turn would ultimately benefit the world. Hence, if you want this cow for fulfilling your selfish needs, I wouldn’t be interested in giving this cow to you!” Upon hearing this from Sage Vasishtaachaarya, Vishwamitra started getting angry. He replied thus, “Oh Sage! I’m a great Kshatriya prince, and you’re trying to take pride upon yourself on having this cow with you, which rightfully should belong to the kingdom! This is a mere injustice that you are doing to the kingdom that you are living in. Moreover, even when the king asks with a lot of respect, you are trying to insult the king by saying unwanted words! This is not befitting for you as a sage! I respected you for your greatness and significance. However, you’re trying to disrespect me with your selfish words!”
Saying thus, Vishwamitra was extremely angry! These words from Vishwamitra made Sage Vashistaachaarya angry as well. He replied to Vishwamitra thus, “Oh Vishwamitra! By talking such unparliamentary words, you’ve not only insulted me, but you’ve insulted the holy “Kaama-Dhenu” cow as well. Do you think it is easy to obtain this cow? I’ve obtained this with my “Tapo-Bhalam”. My final word to you is that you do not even have the right to touch this cow – Forget taking it along with you to your kingdom and palace!” As Sage Vasishtaachaarya firmly conveyed his decision thus, Vishwamitra could not control his anger anymore. He decided that this “talking” and “negotiating” aren’t going to work anymore! The only way to take this cow along will be to abduct it from Sage Vasishtaachaarya! Thus, Vishwamitra jumped up with his army men to try and abduct it from Sage Vasishtaachaarya. This resulted in a huge “war of words” between them again.
Upon seeing Vishwamitra trying to take the offensive route, Sage Vasishtaachaarya again gives him a piece of advice thus, “Oh Vishwamitra! Do you know the difference between a Kshatrya and a Brahmana Rishi? For a Kshatrya, “Tejas” is a very important characteristic. Whereas, for a Brahmana Rishi, “Patience” (“Kshama”) is a very important characteristic. With the words and actions that had come from you, I could have easily taken you down with my “Brahma-Tejas” that I had accumulated for years together. However, I won’t do that. I’m a very patient person who tries to forgive people for their mistakes. If I hadn’t exhibited this patience, would I be able to obtain complete control over my senses? Would I be able to undertake “Tapas” if my sense organs aren’t under my control? So, please understand – Your bow and arrow cannot stand in front of my “Tapo-Bhalam” that I have accumulated for years now! I’m warning you – Please mind your business and get out of this place calmly. I shall let you go. However, if you are going to test my patience and “Tapo-Bhalam”, you wouldn’t be successful against it!”
Even as Sage Vasishtaachaarya patiently explained thus, Vishwamitra was in no mood to listen! He was steadfast in his decision to somehow take the cow with him. Finally, Sage Vasishtaachaarya decides that he has had enough with Vishwamitra. He finally turns towards the cow and talks to her thus, “Oh Nandini! Oh holy divine cow! Now you decide as to whom you should go! If you feel that you’ve to go along with some who is seemingly wanting you for fulfilling his personal selfish agenda, you might go along with him! If you feel that you’ve to be with someone who wishes for the selfless benefit of the world, you might be with him! It’s up to you to decide now which person you should go with!” As Sage Vasishtaachaarya tells this to Nandini, she gets angry on Vishwamitra! Afterall, Sage Vasishtaachaarya is her “Aachaarya” and how dare could Vishwamitra insult him?
Thus, Nandini gets angry and she is now going to take on Vishwamitra single-handedly! What is she going to do? Let us wait to find out in the next episode! Stay tuned! 🙂