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Mani/mantra/& the garuda-legend-4

From: M K Sudarshan (
Date: Wed Mar 26 1997 - 23:34:16 PST

srimathE lakshmi-nrsumha parabrahmaNE namaha
sri vedanta desika guravE namaha

Dear "bhAgavatOttamA-s",

We will continue with Sri.Mukkur Swami's little anecdote :

Several months after the second unsuccessful attempt to get himself enrolled
as a vedic-student, the boy one day was passing through the Master's house

The magic of Vedic sound again cast a spell on the boy !! His heart again
began to stir and quicken with a burning desire to learn the Vedic hymns the
village guru was imparting to his other students.

He walked up to the Master again and said, "Sir, I beseech you, give me a
chance to study the vedas with your revered self. Please oblige."

This time around the Master lost his patience.

He called the boy and told him severely, "Listen boy, stop pestering me. You
simply do not possess the aptitude for this kind of learning. Do you think
learning "rk-s" and "ghanam-s" is easy ? You can't even articulate a single
syllable properly. How do you hope to cope with more difficult passages and
texts in the 'sruti-s" ?"

"Sir, but please, can't you give me one last chance ?" pleaded the boy.

"My boy," said the guru in exasperation,"why do you pester me like this !
You "come-hither and go-thither" (Tamil: "angEnthu-ingae
varuginrAy...ingEnthu angae poginrAy..") once every few months, nag me here
to enrol you in this school when both you and I know for sure you are simply
unfit !! Please stay away for good!"

(Some of you members may be aware of how difficult " LKG/UKG
school-admissions" in today's Chennai too are !!)

But the boy would not take a NO from the Master and continued to plead.

After a while the Master seemed to relent.

He then told the boy, "Okay, boy, let me first give you a preliminary
exercise before I enrol you. I'll initiate you into a special "mantrA". You
learn this "mantrA" and then you go and repeat it countless number of times
until you feel you have completely mastered its articulation. When you are
sure of it you can then return to me and if I am entirely satisfied we can
then commence the Vedic curriculum for you. Okay ?"

The boy was overjoyed and begged the Master to immediately initiate him into
the "mantrA".

The Master took him aside and said, "Okay, boy, here is the "mantrA" which I
will whisper into your ears. Listen carefully to it. Then you can leave
immediately with it and never return to me until you are sure you have
mastered it by chanting it several thousands of times, okay !"

So saying the guru whispered into the boy's ears the "mantrOpadEsam" :

         "ingEnthu angae ! angEnthu-ingae ! "
          (going thither ! coming hither ! )

The Master queried the boy, "Have you properly grasped the "mantrA" ?"

"Yes, Oh Master,", replied the boy.
"Then repeat it for me", commanded the Master.

The poor boy, who did not realise that the Master was pulling his little
legs, faithfully and with child-like innocence chanted: "ingEnthu angae !
angEnthu-ingae ! "

The Master then observed tongue-in-cheek, "Ah, what a smart boy you are !
You have quickly grasped the "mantrA" so well ! Good, keep it up ! Now you
run along, my little boy, go away and keep practising the "mantrA" and never
return here to me until you are sure the "mantrA" works."

The poor boy took the Master seriously. He thanked his "guru" for the
"mantrOpadEsam", then prostrated at the latter's feet to seek blessings and
then took his leave.

We shall continue in the next post.

srimathE srivan satagopa sri narayana yathindra mahadesikaya namaha