The king of Kashi, Ripunjaya was once donating money for constructing temples, marriages of poor and lot more things. He heard that people started calling him a deity in the form of human. He got furious as why a human can’t just be human if he is kind. Why kindness belongs to deities only?
Fight for Human Rights
Ripunjaya started a fight to raise the position of humans. He wanted to create a world where humanity will be supreme and humans will be encouraged to accomplish anything with their strength and determination and not on the obligations of deities.
He took it on another level. He started encouraging people to stop praying and start working more. He donated money to lure people towards working and stop worshiping. He prevented everybody from praying and gave them money to start their work and spend time in development of Kashi.
Prajapati Daksha, who was spending his remaining life in the devotion of Shiva in Kashi, tried to convince Ripunjaya that no doubt today people will stop devotion but later, in problems, they will return to God. He should not force people to stop praying. The way he is working will soon create some terrible problems like hatred and competitiveness. People will forget the meaning of life and spend their time in accumulation of money only. This will lead to the destruction of his kingdom. But Ripunjaya failed to understand him.
Ripunjaya Organized a Yajna
Ripunjaya got the news that people are not satisfied with his thoughts. So he stopped forcing people and organized a yajna for the welfare of people and his kingdom. Although he had no respect for deities but if praying deities could help his people then he had no problem in praising them. He organized a yajna.
Here in Kailash, a grand feast was organized by Ganesha in which demons, deities, saptarishi, gurus were invited. Arrogant deities insulted demons by sitting in the first row of feast. They were proving that there is no place for demons among deities. Diti, mother of demons, aunt of deities king Indra, wife of Rishi Kashyap, daughter of Prajapati Daksha, asked Mahadev for justice. Mahadev announced that whoever worship the Somnath Jyotirlinga, be it human, demon or deity, will get place in heaven.
Because of all these conflicts and fear of losing front row of feast, deities didn’t went into the yajna of Ripunjaya.
Ripunjaya got furious and started hating deities even more. He was doing yajna for his people and welfare of Kashi and deities didn’t come. There was draught in Kashi and yajna went unfruitful. People were dying without water and deities were involved in their issues of sharing heaven with demons.
Ripunjaya Threw Deities out of Kashi
Ripunjaya started an austerity of Brahma dev. Deities, in their arrogance, neglected his austerity. Brahma Dev didn’t want to appear in front of him because Brahma knew that he will ask something so terrible that will affect the whole Kashi.
Ripunjaya then tried to kill himself. With no other option left, Brahma dev appeared.
Ripunjaya asked the powers of all the deities and rights over Kashi so that no demon, deity, snake or God could enter Kashi without his permission. Brahma dev had to grand his wish so He gave him his desired boon and a new name, Devodas.
All deities like sun, moon, air, clouds left Kashi. Devodas created his own 5 elements of nature.
Even He asked Mahadev to leave His most beloved city of Kashi. He wanted to remove Shiva from the city whose existence is just because of Mahadev.
Shiva agreed to leave to respect the boon of Brahma dev. Although Shiva warned him that from very long time people considered arrogance as their self esteem. So he need to be careful about it.
Parvati took pledge that she will not go to Kailash till Mahadev will get entrance in Kashi. Ganesha promised Parvati that He will take charge of situation and let every deity get their position back in Kashi.
Mandirachal Parvat requested Mahadev to come with him and stay there.
When Prajapati Daksha heard about how Mahadev left Kashi, he went into sorrow and left Kashi too.
Devodas Made Kashi Prosperous
Devodas gave all the required elements to people. Soon every land got fertile. He started a new tradition where he asked people to worship their fields and equipment. People started getting more money, materials and property.
Money lead to Greed and Competitiveness
Soon people started learning, how to earn more money instead of how to become good human being. People didn’t want their kids to study in those schools where teachers were teaching them principles of life. They all started generating competitiveness and hatred.
Ashwamegha Yajna of Devodas
To save Kashi from these unseen enemies, Brahma dev asked Devodas to leave his stubbornness. But he was in vanity.
Then Brahma Dev challenged him to organize 10 Ashwamegha Yajna on his own. He accepted and said that if he won’t be able to organize them successfully, he will leave his powers.
He started the Yajna and invited Brahma Dev in it. Since Kashi was completely prosperous, He arranged all the materials required for 10 Ashwamegha Yajna.
Brahma Dev was happy because if Yajna failed then Devodas would leave powers and deities could enter Kashi or if it get successful then Kashi will be blessed with the effects of Ashwamegha Yajna.
By using his powers sensibly, Devodas successfully completed the Ashwamegha Yajna and Brahma Dev returned back.
Ganesha Became Astrologer
Ganesha left Kailash to Kashi to fulfill his promise. Shiva explained him that he should not have any enmity for Devodas. He did a very good work and made Kashi prosperous without deities. He never used powers for his welfare. His intentions were always in the welfare of Kashi and its people. Only he got arrogant and away from God element. Because of that new terrible emotions are increasing among the people of Kashi which is bad. Ganesha will have to only realize him with truth. Ganesha took a form of Astrologer and sat near the boundary of Kashi.
Crimes in the kingdom
Devodas was informed that somebody snatched jewels from a merchant. Devodas was angry because he gave everything to his people and still there were crimes. He called the criminal and it turned out to be his own son, Shatrunjaya.
He presented Shatrunjaya in his court and asked, Why he did so? Shatrunjaya said that he liked the jewels and wanted them but merchant didn’t want to give so he snatched from him.
Devodas then asked if he had any idea of what level of crime he did? Shatrunjaya said, “What crime? I did nothing“. Devodas sent him to jail.
Devodas thought Shatrunjaya did crime and didn’t want to accept it. Why? People saw him, the son of king, as criminal but they had no astonishment about it as if they don’t care. Why its happening and What is missing? These were the questions in his mind.
Devodas Met Astrologer
His queen informed him that an expert astrologer, Dhundhiraj is resided at the boundary of Kashi. He could answer his questions.
Devodas went to meet him. He invited the astrologer and promised him that he will keep no stone unturned in his welcome.
Dhundhiraj saw that people were charging money for water, for lifting a corpse or for any other basic need. In fact for everything money was involved.
Everything seemed transparent but still there was something missing. The feeling of brotherhood diminished and only business remained.
Devodas asked Dhundhiraj to have lunch but Dhundhiraj said that he only eats what he gets in donation or begging. Devodas changed his outfit and went with Dhundhiraj to get begging from his citizens.
He saw that nobody was giving any food to Dhundhiraj. Everybody was zero of sentiments. They went to all the houses but nobody gave a single seed.
They then went to one hut where a girl was praying lord Shiva. The parents of girl gave Dhundhiraj, some rice.
Dhundhiraj asked if they are not afraid of their king who prohibited begging and donation? Couple said that if a brahmin went hungry from Kashi, that will be the disrespect for their king.
Dhundhiraj then asked, why they are giving the food which they have scarcely. What they will eat now? Couple said that how can they eat if somebody on their door is hungry.
Listening this, Devodas was shocked. His heart was bursting. Nobody cared for his respect but the poor couple did. Everybody was just caring about his order and not for a hungry human.
He wanted to build Kashi on humanity and that was the only thing which got lost. The devotees of Shiva had nothing but that humanity. He found greed in absence of element of Shiva in Kashi.
Devodas, a man with fair intentions but wrong path, took no time in understanding that Shiva is the destroyer of arrogance, ignorance, greed, temptation, fear and Maya kinds of negativity.
With the increment of wealth, these negativity increased too but Shiva was not present there to destroy them.
Establishment of Devodaseshwar Linga
Devodas made a Shiv Linga and apologized for his ignorance. Shiva appeared and blessed him that his Shiv linga will be known as Devodaseshwar Linga and all those who pray this linga, will get free from ignorance and arrogance.
All deities got the place back in Kashi.
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