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Sunday, November 25, 2012

PeriyavA's Stories-"arisi vAngalaiyO?"


Sri Kanchi Maha Periva Thiruvadigal Saranam

Thanks to kanchi periyava forum

A tuRavi (ascetic) who was going on pAdayAtrA (tour on foot) to Rameswaram stayed in the village common maTham, acceding to the request of the people of the village.

He would visit every house in the village daily in the morning and ask, "arisi vAngalaiyO?" (did not buy the rice?—literally).

The village people enjoyed this new custom in the beginning. But then later on they started feeling irritated by the ascetic daily asking them this question.

One man took courage and asked the ascetic: "Swami, aren't we sending you your bikShA (alms) every day each taking his turn among ourselves? Then why ask 'arisi vAngalaiyO?' If we don't have the rice how can we give you the bhikShA?"

The ascetic was calm for a while, without feeling angry. Then he said: "It is only my mistake not to have told you people in a way you would understand it. I did not ask "arisi vAngalaiyO?" Only to remind you of the name of the God, I asked "ari sivA engalaiyO?" (did not say Hari, Siva today?) In this age of Kali, only the name of the God is the simplest way towards liberation. I was prompting you only towards that way (by my question)..."

The villagers' respect towards the ascetic multiplied several times on hearing this explanation from him. Everyone came forward competing among themselves to be of service to him. The relationship between them was becoming closer. After four days, however, the ascetic left the village to continue his yAtrA.

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