Today, we are going to talk about another great devotee in Indian Mythology. But this time, it’s not about a kid, but of an old lady named Shabari. She is one of the greatest devotees of Lord Rama
Introduction to Shabari:
When we went to Bhadrachalam for a trip, my granddad introduced this lady named Shabari to me. Her statue is there in one of those places in Bhadrachalam and when I asked who this granny is, my granddad told me the story of a true devotee of Lord Rama. Do you guys want to hear that story from me?
Shabari is originally from a tribal family it seems. But she didn’t like their lifestyle of hunting animals and roaming around the forests. All she wanted was to lead a peaceful life without hurting any animals or people. But when her parents started forcing her to eat meat and be like them, she had run away from her house one night.
While roaming around the forest to sleep for that night, she reaches Mathanga maharishi’s ashram. She asks shelter from that sage so that she can stay there and help him in his daily life. Mathanga Maharshi agrees to that, despite the fact that other people in the ashram don’t like her appearance and language.
Shabari gets up daily and sweeps the road that leads to the river so that this Mathanga Maharshi and his disciples can walk easily without any stones or thorns pricking them. She used to collect flowers and fruits in the forest and keep them ready for their puja. She spent a long time like this. But still, most the people hated her for her appearance and the language she used to speak.
Shabari and Rama Story:
Seeing her devotion towards them, Mathanga Maharshi teaches her the Taraka Mantra and tells her to keep repeating it again and again. Also, he mentions that since she is a blessed soul, Lord Rama would come in search of her. From then onwards, she turns her devotion towards Lord Rama. So she keeps chanting the Taraka mantra daily with complete dedication and awaits Lord Rama’s arrival.
In the meantime, she once visits the nearby lake to fetch water. One of the disciples of Mathanga Maharshi got very angry, thinking she is spoiling their water. So he threw a stone at her and scolded her. That stone scratches her leg and blood starts dripping from her leg. She feels so sad about this incident and goes limping back to her house. But as a drop of her blood has fallen into the lake, the entire water in the lake has turned into blood. Seeing this everybody got surprised. But they didn’t know what was the reason behind this change
All the people in the ashram does a lot of prayers and puja’s but still, the water will not change. In the meantime, they heard that Lord Rama is passing by that route, so they all go to Lord Rama and asks him to help them in changing the lake.
Hearing this, even Lord Rama is surprised. So he visits that lake and tries to dip his legs, but nothing happens. Then he understands the problem and asks the disciples of Mathanga Maharshi to take him back to the ashram.
There in the ashram, Lord Rama meets Shabari and her long wait is over. She was so overjoyed to host Lord Rama. She offers him fruits, flowers, and nectar from the flowers. Each and every fruit she will taste and give it to him so that Lord Rama can have only the sweetest of the sweet fruits. Same goes for the nectar too. Just like how our mommies do with our food isn’t it.
Everybody starts hating her for this and tells that she is doing bad things by offering the tasted food. They even ask Lord Rama, as to how can be she called a true devotee of Lord Rama. He tells them that she is pure at heart and doesn’t understand that tasting is bad and all she wishes is to give me the best, just like how my mom thinks.
Then Lord Rama asks Shabari to visit the lake which she stopped visiting after that person has scolded her. When she walks towards that lake itself, few dust particles from her feet fall into the lake and the entire lake turns back into sweet water. People were really surprised to see this change. Then Lord Rama tells them that Shabari is the real example of pure devotion.
Lessons I learnt from Shabari – the devotee of Lord Rama:
My granddad and I discussed this Shabari a lot. You know why? I normally get very impatient and start shouting if my mom doesn’t answer me immediately. I want everybody to listen to me immediately. My granddad told me that we should be like Shabari, never demanding. Then mom would listen to me and fulfill my demands when she has time. We need to only ask once and keep quiet.
This is my story about the most devoted lady in Indian Mythology friends. Hope you liked it. You can find my other articles under Indian Mythology here, which were written as a part of the #A to Z Challenge and #BlogchatterA2Z.