Bhaktambar Stotra ► 19 ►NAAGDAMANI HIDDEN IN HIS NAME

Posted: 08.12.2019

-37-
Rakte-kshanamsamada-kokila-leantha-neelam,Krodhod-dhatam phar1ina-mut-phana-maa-patantam |
Aakraa-mati lemma-yugenanirasta-shankas,T van-naama-naagwdamaneehridiyasyapunsah ||

A devotee who has absorbed the naagdamani (anti-toxin) of your name in its heart fearlessly faces an incoming angry serpent that has blood red eyes, is blue like the throat of an intoxicated cuckoo and has a raised hood.

-38-
Vulgat-turanga-gaja-garjitwbheema-naada,Maajaubdlambalavataa-mapibhoopatee-naam |
Udyad-divaakara-mayookha-shikhaa-paviddham,Tvat-kirta-naat tama ivaashubhidaa-mupaiti ||

As darkness is pierced by the rays of the rising sun, similarly the army of a formidable king on the battlefield, where horses are galloping, and elephants are trumpeting, and warriors are creating tumultuous uproar, disperse when your name is chanted.

Health Energy and Success — an unfailing mantra for all these is-Fearlessness. Where fear is prevalent, power is reduced to half.Where fear is entrenched, digestion gets disrupted, and health is adversely affected. In a state of fear, it is impossible to climb the ladder of success. Acharya Maantung has discussed many causes of fear. He affirms that the one who prays to the Lord becomes fearless in all respects. Analysis of causes of fear and assurance of fearlessness, both resonate clearly in his composition.

 

Fear of Serpent

Serpents have been a common cause of fear. Snakes have no mutual enmity with humans. Yet humans are afraid of snakes because their bite can be lethal. Although not all snakes are venomous, the entire species has been conjured as vicious. In general, a snake does not bite. It bites only when someone steps onto it or aggravates it.

Here is a well-known incident: someone said to his holiness, the seventh Acharya of Terapanth, Acharya Daalgani - Gurudev! Please remain gracious on us. To which Acharya Daalgani replied - Brother, you be careful too. We won't remonstrate without mistake, nor shall punish without defect. Remember to not make the mistake of stepping on a snake's tail! Acharya Maantung explains this simple rule - touch a snake with your hand, it won't get angry. Even touching any other part of its body will not make it angry. But, step on its tail with your feet and the snake will be furious in a jiffy.

-37-
Rakte-kshanamsamada-kokila-leantha-neelam,Krodhod-dhatam phar1ina-mut-phana-maa-patantam |
Aakraa-mati lemma-yugenanirasta-shankas,T van-naama-naagwdamaneehridiyasyapunsah ||

Acharya Maantung says — ’Lord! A man steps onto a snake with both his legs, nevertheless he is not scared. Such a person is called "Nirasta Shankah”, one who invalidates even the risk of fear. He steps on the serpent with such dauntlessness and the serpent surprisingly does not bite. The serpent is not an ordinary one. Its eyes are red. It is as blue as a cuckoo’s throat which intensifies when a cuckoo is intoxicated with lust. Like an intoxicated cuckoo’s throat, the dark blue snake is insolent with anger. It has raised its hood. The person has unscrupulously stepped on such a snake. Still the snake cannot harm him. Neither the anger nor the red eyes are formidable. It calms down.’

Acharya Maantung unveils the mystery hidden behind it —'Lord! The one, who holds your name in his heart as Naagdamani, cannot be harmed even by an enraged snake.’

There is an herb called Naagdamani. Anyone possessing this herb cannot be persecuted by the fear of snakes. Even the most dangerous snakes cannot harm them. It will not come in the vicinity of this herb. Herbs have amazing effects. Special gems andherbs have the power to turn the impossible into possible. If you want to cross the river and you do not have a boat, you can use the jalkaant-mani (special gem) and step into the river. The water will set aside forming a path in the middle.

Another meaning for Naagdamani is janguli-vidya (a kind of mystical power). A serpent cannot harm a person adept in janguli-vidya. He catches the snake with his bare hands, steps on it and yet the snake does not hurt him. There are some people who playwith poisonous snakes. They live with so much affection towardsthem that the snakes do not bite them. I read in the newspaper about a man who had created a world record by being the only human to live with poisonous snakes for days together. None of the snakes bit him, nor harmed him. He befriended them.

 

The Friend of All

Being friendly is a powerful weapon. Who can have enmity with that person who has befriended all living creatures? Friendliness is developed not just in words, but at an inner conscience level too.A friendly person does not think negative of others, do not speak ill about anyone, do not wish anyone ill-luck, and continuouslycommunicate the emotion of friendliness to all. Everyone wishesto be around such a person. It is said that in the presence of aVeetarag, even a lion and lamb can co-habit, even enemies by birth tend to forget their enmity. They come together and sit side byside. The sense of fear or enmity disappears from their conscience.

A number of animals and birds were sitting near a yogi. Another yogi arrived a few moments later. As soon as the latter arrived all the animals fled, and the birds flew away. The astonished yogi asked — what happened? Everyone was here until now. Why did they leave on my arrival? The first yogi smiled and responded — you have not practiced friendship and fearlessness. The attitude of friendliness and fearlessness within you will create an aura of attraction around you.

The attitude of friendliness and fearlessness within you will create an aura of attraction around you.

Animals and birds may not have the intelligence like us humans. However, they do have innate subtle intelligence and their instincts are strong. They can sense a person from far and recognize whether they are approaching with the intention to harm or befriend. They can even recognize emotions, whether they are benign or malignant.

A botanist conducted an experiment. He kept a few plants in a room and installed a galvanometer that could record and indicate the plant's reaction to a stimulus. Next, he sent a person in the room to pluck a few leaves. The person went in and plucked leaves. Now the botanist sent a deferent person to just be with the plants. The device clearly recorded that the plants were calm in the presence of the second person. Next, the one who had plucked leaves was sent in. This time the plants started responding the moment the former entered the room. The galvanometer's needle started to move. This was the plants’ fear on sighting their enemy, the one who had plucked their leaves.

Where there is practice of friendship, there is no place for fear or enmity. One who has mastered the feeling of friendliness is not afraid of snakes, lions or any other creature. Where there is friendliness there is presence of nonviolence. Where there is presence of nonviolence, fearlessness prevails. Maharishi Patanjali had also said — where nonviolence is completely practiced, hostility relinquishes.

Where there is friendliness there is presence of nonviolence. Where there is presence of nonviolence, fearlessness prevails.

The problem is that we resolve for nonviolence and friendship, but do not practice it. Until the time a resolution remains merely a resolution and is not practiced, nonviolence and friendliness will not inculcate within oneself and antagonism will not be mitigated. It is important to will fully choose to practice the resolutions made. Grains remain raw until they are cooked. Just by keeping the grains in clay or metal vessel cannot ensure their cooking. Only when it is put on fire and the heat of the flame reaches the raw grain will they start to cook and eventually become edible?

To achieve the perfect state of friendliness; it is important that the resolution receives heat in the form of contemplation. It is under the flame of contemplation that the resolve of friendliness reaches its determinant stage. Here, that meaning for Naagdamani can be--seeking friendliness, or subsidizing, pacifying or eliminating attachments and aversions. When attachment and hatred is for all creatures inevitably awakens. Fearlessness and nonviolence emerge and the feeling of friendliness spreads all around. Fear and enmity disappear in such a state, the poisonous snake sinks in the constant flow of friendliness and transforms it.

 

Fear of War

Another cause of constant fear is - war. It was more prevalent in ancient time. Kings of small provinces would be at war with each other. The kings of big territories constantly fought battles to capture the smaller provinces and increase their power. Even today battles are being fought but in different ways. Everyone is petrified of the catastrophe caused by wars. Once a war is waged, an army is deployed, and the entire region is ruined. In the following shlok, Acharya Maantung uses this context to explain that War does not affect the one who prays to you –

-38-
Vulgat-turanga-gaja-garjitwbheema-naada, Maajaubdlambalavataa-mapibhoopatee-naam |
Udyad-divaakara-mayookha-shikhaa-paviddham, Tvat-kirta-naat tama ivaashubhidaa-mupaiti ||

Explaining the conditions of battle, Acharya Maantung said -‘A powerful army led mighty king is eager to fight m a battlefield. The army is armed with horses that can jump high fast and agile and can leap across rivulets. The fierce sound of roaring elephants leads to mass destruction sending shiver down commoners. Even such an army of a mighty king cannot harm the person who prays to you.’

The description in the shlokas is reflection of the era the poet belonged to. A poet will always depict scenarios that he has witnessed. Today, if a poet wishes to describe a war scenario they will not mention horses and elephants. Instead, they will write about an army equipped with missiles, tankers, atomic and nuclear bombs, capable of mass destruction. Even such an army can be calmed down with this shlok. The composer writes that even the most powerful king, who seems to be indomitable with his ferocious horses and elephants flees away. Acharya Maantung uses an analogy to validate this fact - ‘Just like the rays of the rising sun beats darkness and destroys it, one who establishes connection with you; commemorates you, beats even a mighty king.’

Eradication of fear of snakes can be understood but diffusing the strength of warrior kings seems incomprehensible. Can a simple prayer end a fierce war? Can the enemy flee? While this may seem as an exaggeration it is not. This statement is relative to faith. It appears that the poet, drowned in his faith and overflow of emotions, has said that the horrid war will end, and the warriors will flee when chanting the mantra. With the strength of mere faith, is it truly possible?

 

Strength of Faith

Gautam Buddha was standing in meditation.

A demigod asked him — Tell me, which is the most supreme wealth? Which ras (essence or flavour; it connotes a concept in Indian arts about the aesthetic flavour of any visual, literary or musical work that evokes an emotion or feeling in the reader or audience) is the best? If you do not give the correct answer, I shall kill you.

Buddha replied — Even if I do not answer, you will be unable to kill me. Either ways, I will answer your question. Faith is supreme among all wealth.

One who does not have faith is truly poor. People who have a lot of materialistic wealth, but lack faith and self-confidence suffer immensely. We have seen prosperous people crying like babies. Those who do not have faith and self-confidence can never lead a happy and peaceful life. Anyone who has the strength of faith and great self-confidence can never be nervous in any situation.

The second question — which ras is the best?

Buddha said — the best ras is the ras of truth.

Truth is the world’s best ras. One who has formed allegiance with truth can never be trapped in physical and materialistic pleasures. All such pleasures will appear dull. The person attracted towards truth can tolerate thousands of problems and difficulties and still not feel depressed. Truth makes life interesting and purifies emotions.

Demigod was satisfied with Buddha's answers.

If you say anything with faith even if it is in a huff it will come true. But we should analyze what Acharya has said here. Is it just the voice of his faith or is it really true? This shlok seems to have both - faith and truth. The truth is that if a huge war can be avoided by the power of intellect why can it not be done with faith?

The following is an episode from Jain history.

Without any prior notification King Chandapradyot arrived with his army to attack King Shrenik. He besieged the capital in the evening withthe motive of winning against King Shrenik. King Shrenik was worried with the sudden onslaught.

He started thinking — What will happen now? There is no solution. We are not ready. How long can we keep the city-gates closed? Worried, King Shrenik immediately summoned his minister; Abhay Kumar.

Abhay Kumar saluted the king. The king said — ’Have you been sleeping Abhay Kumar?’

‘No, Sir!’

’Do you know what is about to happen?’

’Yes, Sir!’

‘Chandapradyot has laid siege with his strong army. What will happen now?’

’Do not worry, Sir. Nothing will happen.’

’Abhay Kumar! Grave danger lies ahead.’

‘Do not worry, Sir. Everything will be alright by morning.’

Abhay Kumar used his intellect in this situation. Intellect is like kaamdhenu (wish-fulfilling cow), from which all that is desired can he drawn. Shuddha hi buddhih kila kaamdhenuh i.e. whatever we wish, we can get with our purity of intellect. Abhay Kumar used his intellect in such a way that it led to Chandapradyot fleeing back to his kingdom before dawn.

At dawn, the soldiers from Chandapradyot’s army woke up to prepare for battle. Just then they got the news that their king, Chandapradyot had led from the battlegrounds and returned back to his kingdom. The army officers were perplexed and thought to themselves — when the king himself has returned to his kingdom, who shall we fight for? Under whose order and leadership shall we fight? By sunrise the army too returned to their kingdom.

In the morning, King Shrenik received the news of Chandapradyot had fleeing along with his army. This left him pleasantly surprised. AbhayKumar's tactful intellect averted the danger of war.

We cannot expect extraordinary results from ordinary intellect and casual faith.

Abhay Kumar had sent a special messenger to Chandapradyot with the following message — 'Lord, tomorrow your army officials will capture and present you to King Shrenik in exchange of wealth. They have lost their sense of judgement under the influence of the glistening gold coins, the proof of which is the millions of gold coins buried under the tents occupied by your army ofiicials. If you want to stay unharmed and avoid possible insult and defeat, you must return to your kingdom. This is in your interest.’

The language of the message disturbed Chandapradyot. A spark of doubt was formed, and it became the reason for his elopement.

Do not trust things to occur if your faith is weak.

If intellect can force an army to run away, why can't faith do the same? A sharp mind can do what an ordinary mind cannot. Faith too should be indomitable. We cannot expect extraordinary results from ordinary intellect and casual faith. We cannot achieve anything with incomplete faith. Often People say that they had faith and yet nothing happened. What is the point in having wobbling faith on anything or a person? A wobbling faith has no existence.

Where faith flourishes and reaches its limits, impossible becomes possible. But a high degree of climax must be reached with resolute faith. Until the intense emotions of faith are not created, we shall not get the desired results. Chandapradyot had his doubts - 'All of my soldiers are with Shrenik now. I am alone. I will be held captive.’ And so, he ran away. Abhay Kumai-'s use of intellect placed this fear in his mind. In the same way, our unwavering staunch faith can produce doubt and fear in the enemy's mind. It will not be a matter of surprise if this doubt becomes the reason for the enemy to step back.

This is a relative statement by Acharya Maantung. If there is firm faith it can happen. Do not trust things to occur if your faith is weak. Ordinary, half-hearted faith does not lead to success. In this shlok, the composer has also brought forth the strength in faith. This tone was born out of the light of reverence — Kaaryam saadhayami dehamvaa paatayaami - I shall complete my task, or I will sacrifice my body. In the same tone Acharya Bhikshu had said — mara pooraa desyam pana aatam raa kaaraja saarasyam. Even if I lose my life, I shall continue on the path of self-pursuit. He found success even in difficult situations. He who has resolute faith, firm resolve, and determination succeeds.

Buddha resoluted - "Even if my body dries up I shall not move until I gain enlightenment.” He was enlightened. Success is assured in the presence of such willpower and resolute faith.

This shlok from the stuti gives the following lesson - Anyone with incredible faith is free from the dangers of snake and war. They are protected in both the cases.It is expected to awaken the power of faith and firm resolution that will make a person fearless. A person wishes to be fearless but cannot be so without pursuing and exercising the guiding principles of fearlessness.

Acharya Maantung has used the maxima of faith — ’Just by praying to you the fear of snakes can be eradicated, war cam be averted.’ Whether we find ourselves in a state of war or not, whether we ever are in the vicinity of a snake or not, these shlokas composed by the Acharya are truly in the interest of a devotee helping them to enhance utmost faith in their heart.

Share this page on: