As the story goes, Narada once went to Vaikuntha (Vishnu’s abode in the heavens) and asked him, “Who is your favorite devotee?” Vishnu knew fully well what Narada was hoping to hear his own name as he thought he recites name of Lord 24×7 so lord Vishnu wanted to teach Narada a lesson.
Vishnu names a poor farmer in a village on distant Earth as his favorite devotee. A crestfallen and baffled Narada wants to know what was so special about the farmer. Vishnu suggests that the two of them travel to the farmer’s house – Narada could then see for himself.
Narada and Vishnu promptly beam themselves down to the village and arrive at the farmer’s hut, disguised as weary travelers. The farmer is extremely hospitable and makes them feel at home.
The next morning, Narada shadows the farmer as he works hard in his fields. Throughout the day, Narada doesn’t get any glimpse of the farmer’s extraordinary devoutness so when they return to the hut in the evening, a visibly puzzled Narada asks “When and how many times do you pray to / think about Vishnu?”
The farmer replies “Once in the morning, once in the evening …..and may be one or two time in between ” Narada and Vishnu thank the farmer for his hospitality and leave.
As soon as they were out of earshot, Narada lets out a guffaw and confronts Vishnu with “The farmer thinks about you a mere 1 -2 times a day while I think and sing paeans to you every single waking minute. How could you possibly consider the farmer to be a more superior devotee than me?
” Vishnu smiles, materializes a pot (filled to the brim with oil) and places it gingerly on Narada’s unsuspecting head. He then commands Narada to walk the width of the field and return to the original spot without spilling a single drop of oil. ….spilling will bring him extinction so with utmost concentration, Narada manages to accomplish the feat.
Vishnu: “So Narada, how many times did you think about me during your walk across the field?”
Narada: “Not even once! How could I when all my attention was on the pot and ensuring that not a drop would spill?”
A smiling Vishnu delivering the checkmate: “The farmer works hard in his fields all day, has all the family responsibilities yet he finds the time to think about me a few times. You, on the other hand, couldn’t think of me even once!”
Epilogue …… In Hinduism most of the Gods and Goddesses have family ….. to run a family ….fulfilling the duties is the simple and best spiritual practice …… even the Lord Krishna in Holy Gita …… one name and one flower is enough ….like our children wishing us a good morning and a good evening is enough for us and this fact is explained so is in the story of Narada ……lord Vishnu want us to understand …… be a family person …..fulfill all our duties of life as worship of work and totality …… working in totality and taking care of people around and love for entire humanity is middle path of enlightened masters …..
a family person is a true enlightened master …… family means ….love for all.
(c) ram0ram …… freedom to right copy and share
I love Hindu mythological stories and the way they carry the hidden scientific and spiritual wisdom inside ….. with very simple stories they make us understand a complete picture of life …….
recently I met a friend of mine who joined a particular mission …..started living away from the family in a ashram which he calls it a spiritual center ….. so I asked why he has left his family ….. he answers ….to find enlightenment ……so I asked him ….how can you be enlightened living away and what kind of timetable you have in your spiritual center ……. so he gave me minute by minute program and practices starting from 4 a.m. to 10 p.m …..
as he was enchanting a particular name in between all the time so I asked why one has to recite this name all the time and he replied in a robotic way ….. this name is of lord and who ever enchant it all the time is very near and dear to God ….. so I asked but what about your family ….. you are not near to your family how can you be near to God ?
to make him understand told him this following story ……