Episode # 194 – Vishwamitra’s physical strength & “Astras” prove futile against Sage Vasishtachaarya’s intense “Tapo-Balam”!!!

In the previous episode, we were at an important juncture wherein a huge war of words broke out between Sage Vasishtaachaarya and Vishwamitra over the “Nandini” cow. Vishwamitra stuck to his decision of somehow obtaining the cow from Sage Vasishtaachaarya, however, Sage Vasishtaachaarya was no ordinary person to be easily convinced. He also stood his ground that he is not going to part with his holy cow. Vishwamitra argued that it is such a waste of resource if the cow is with a Sage who has nothing to do in life, whereas, if the cow would have been in the kingdom, it could feed thousands of people every day. However, Sage Vasishtaachaarya was not ready to buy that argument of Vishwamitra and emphasized repeatedly that Vishwamitra was “selfish” in his needs and he would end up using the cow to fulfill his own personal requirements. A huge argument broke out and finally Vishwamitra decided to somehow abduct the cow and leave the place. It is at this time, Sage Vasishtaachaarya has a look at Nandini and gives her the choice of being with him or to go with Vishwamitra. 

Nandini greatly respected Sage Vasishtaachaarya as her own Aachaarya or Guru. She had extremely high regards for him. As Nandini sees her Aachaarya getting frustrated, she couldn’t bear it anymore. Thus, Nandini swung into action and released all its “Devas”, “Raakshasas”, “Dhaanavas”, etc. who were residing within her, to attack Vishwamitra. As the entire set of celestial beings came to fight Vishwamitra, he was clearly caught off guard! He wasn’t prepared to take on a war with anyone as he was just on a hunting spree. Moreover, he had to maneuver “heavy-weight” fighters, and this proved to be very costly for him! The entire army of Vishwamitra was reduced to dust within no time and within no time, he was left all alone to fend for himself! This was an embarrassing situation for Vishwamitra, who was a great king at that point in time. He was an invincible warrior, however, with Nandini’s fury, he was reduced to rubble! 

Unable to bear the insult thus, Vishwamitra decided to take Sage Vasishtaachaarya single handedly! He thus decided that mere fighting doesn’t help. The only way to defeat Sage Vasishtaachaarya and Nandini was by employing powerful “Asthras”. Thus, as Vishwamitra was getting ready with one “Asthra” after the other (Brahmaasthra, Indraastrhra, Varunaasthra, etc.), Sage Vasishtaachaarya planted his “Brahma-Dhanda” in front of his ashram, took Nandini along with him and went inside! While going, Sage Vasishtaachaarya fumed in anger towards Vishwamitra thus, “Oh Vishwamitra! You’re thinking too much about yourself! You may go ahead and try all your “Asthras” on me and Nandini! However, you would only be more embarrassed with yourself because none of your so-called “Asthras” would be able to withstand the power of my “Brahma-Dhanda”. You may try attacking me at your own peril!” Saying thus, Sage Vasishtaachaarya walks away, and Vishwamitra tries “Asthra” after “Asthra” to set his ashram on fire – Only to be neutralized by the powerful “Brahma-Dhanda”. Thus, Sage Vasishtaachaarya’s entire “Tapo-Bhalam” is concentrated in that “Brahma-Dhanda” and it is refusing to let any Asthra pass through! This added more insult to injury for Vishwamitra, who was already embarassed because he wasn’t able to withstand an attack from a cow after all! 

As all his “Asthras” fail and fall on to the ground, Vishwamitra slowly realizes thus, “Oh! This “Brahma-Bhalam”, “Atma-Bhalam”  and “Tapo-Bhalam” seems to be way too powerful than my Asthras! Till now I’ve only been looking at my physical strength and taking pride in it. But today I understand that there is something that is more powerful than mere physical strength, which is the power of penance (Tapas). Vishwamitra realizes this and slowly walks away, accepting the defeat! Thus, Sage Vasishtaachaarya won this first round of battle successfully! However, even as Vishwamitra accepted defeat, he was still having that vengeance in his mind. He was somehow looking for ways and means to take on Sage Vasishtaachaarya again, apart from mere physical strength. As he was contemplating thus, meanwhile, Sage Vasishtaachaarya had a son by name Sage Shakti. 

So for today, let us understand until this point, and in the next episode we shall witness how this feud between the two “greats” continued further! 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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