Spiritual Import of Religious Festivals -15-3.
Lord Dattatreya – Master Par Excellence-3.
Dattatreya Jayanti message given in the year 1973. Dattatreya Jayanti falls on the full moon day in the month of Margasirsha (November-December)
Incidentally, I will tell you a humorous story, to give you an idea of the power of sages. There was a time when the demons were a terror to people. There were two demon brothers. They were carnivorous.
Their only profession was to eat human beings. They used to kill them, cook them and eat. But how to get human beings every day? You cannot get people to eat every day. So these demon brothers hatched out a plan. They pretended to be very humble devotees of Brahmins, and every day they invited a Brahmin for lunch.
The younger brother was a pastmaster in black magic. He would allow himself to be cut into pieces and cooked. He had the power to regain his life afterwards. The elder brother would cut and cook his younger brother and feed the invited Brahmin, who would not know what he had eaten.
After the eating was over, the elder brother would call out his younger brother saying, "O Vatapi, please come." Vatapi was the younger brother's name. That man, through the power of his black magic, would regain life, burst the stomach of the Brahmin and come out. And the poor Brahmin would then be the meal for both.
Every day this used to happen. Most of the Brahmins were finished, one by one. One day, it so happened, they had a very bad bargain.
There was a very powerful sage by name Agastya Rishi. He was a Brahmin. He was invited for lunch. He was like Lord Dattatreya. He was not, therefore, an ordinary Brahmin as the two brothers took him to be. As usual, the younger brother was cooked and given to Agastya for his lunch. Agastya knew this. He thought: "These demons want to kill me and eat me! I will teach them a lesson today."
He ate the meal. As soon as he finished his meal, the elder brother said, "O Vatapi, please come." Agastya, the sage, rubbed his belly, muttering, "Vatapi jirno bhava": Let Vatapi be digested. Turning to the elder brother, the sage said, "Sir, your brother has been digested; he cannot come out and he will not come out."
Oh! The elder brother was shocked. He thought there was some special power with this Brahmin and he ran for his life. But Agastya would not let him escape. He simply uttered 'Hum' (a mystical sound) which reduced that elder brother to ashes. I am giving this instance to throw some sidelight on the power of spiritual masters.
To be continued ..