Author: Nilanjana Dey

Tales from Srimad Bhagavatam: The Elephant and the Crocodile – XVIII

Strange are the ways of the Divine. The elephant and the crocodile fought each other till Narayana slew the crocodile and saved the elephant. Both these creatures were cursed in their past lives. Though on opposite sides, both attained salvation, such is the grace of the Lord. Here’s an interesting tale from the Bhagavatam, recounted […]

Tales from Srimad Bhagavatam: Jada Bharata – XVII

Nilanjana retells the story of the son of Rishabhah, King Bharata, an ideal king, a righteous man and a perfect ruler. How Bharata remembers his past lives and the wisdom that he imparted to King Rahugana. Read more in the regular column, on Bhagavatam, exclusively in Different Truths. Bharata was Rishabhah’s son.  He was an ideal […]

Tales from Srimad Bhagavatam: Rishabhah – XVI

Rishabhah avatar of Narayana was a live demonstration as to how riches, fame, power and everything that human beings pine for cannot overrule the detachment of one who is centered. This avatar taught his contemporaries and generations to come that the life of a grihasta (family oriented person) can be so arranged that he can be in […]

Tales from Srimad Bhagavatam: Narasimha – XV

Happy with Brahma’s boons, Hiranyakashipu captured heaven and earth. Very soon Indra, Kubera, Varuna and Yama became his vassals. However, Hiranyakashipu was not happy. The boon of immortality, his conquests and achievements did not give him any peace of mind. His hatred for Narayana, who killed his brother, was consuming him. The fire of hatred so engulfed him that […]

Tales from Srimad Bhagavatam: Rituals and Quest! – XIV

Ceremonies and rituals take one away from being united with the Divine. Sage Narada decided to approach King Prachinabaris and show the path of devotion. He met the king, who received him with courtesy appropriate for that epoch. After exchanging pleasantries, Narada spoke to the king, “I see that you are too occupied with these rituals, the […]

Tales from Srimad Bhagavatam: The Story of Sati – XIII

  Prajapati Daksha was not favourably disposed towards Lord Shiva. He thought Shiva had insulted him in the past by not standing up to respect him during the Brahma Satra yagnya. He was so angry with Lord Shiva that he cursed him, “I am your father-in- law. Therefore you have to pay me respect. I am like your guru. […]

Tales from Srimad Bhagavatam: The Story of Ajamila – XII

Nilanjana recounts the tale of Ajamila, who was born in a virtuous family and had a good upbringing. But he was distracted and fell into evil company. Later on, he got married to someone, who led him to further deprivation. He, therefore, led an unrighteous life and indulged more in the pleasure of the senses. He had ten […]

Tales from Srimad Bhagavatam: Adi Varaha, the Wild Boar – XI

Nilanjana recounts the tale of Adi Varaha, the Wild Boar incarnation of Narayana. Hiranyaksha challenged Narayana in the form of Adi Varaha, “You beast! You think you can steal the earth and run away. I am looking on it, don’t you know? You have no rights on her. Though you are in disguise, I know you are Narayana. […]

Tales from Srimad Bhagavatam: The Arrogant Door-keepers –X

Nilanjana recounts an interesting tale from the Bhagavatam. Diti realised that she was pregnant. However, instead of joy, anxiety took over her. Since she was very scared about the chaos that her sons are likely to cause in the world, she wanted to retain the children inside herself. It is believed that they stayed in her womb for […]

Tales from Srimad Bhagavatam: The Plight of Prithvi – IX

Nilanjana recounts the tale of the Mother Earth, Prithvi, tracing its plight to the rule of the wicked king, Vena, who abused the bounty of nature. Sunita, Vena’s mother was too attached to her son. She did not allow Vena’s body to be cremated and preserved it with herbs and magical powers that she possessed. From the body […]

Tales from Srimad Bhagavatam: Dhruvah-tara – VIII

Once Dhruvah saw his step-brother, Uttamah, play with the king. The five-year-old Dhruvah wished the same and approached Uttanpadah. His stepmother, Suruchi, shooed him away. Hurt, Dhruvah, asked his mother why he should be treated this way. Suniti smiled sadly, “It is my misfortune. Because you are my son, the misfortune is extended towards you too. But we should not […]

Tales from Srimad Bhagavatam: Kurma Avatar – VII

Nilanjana tells us the story of Kurma (tortoise) Avatar of Lord Vishnu, in the seventh part of the serial. The story of Amrita1 Manthan2 (churning of the ocean for the nectar of immortality) is one of the more popular stories of Srimad Bhagavatam. The devas and the asuras began to churn the ocean. Narayana kept his hand on […]

Tales from Srimad Bhagavatam: Sankhya Yoga – VI

In the sixth part, Nilanjana tells us few wonderful stories about the three sons of Brahma, who were asked to populate the world by the Creator. Here Narayana says how he would be born in his devotee Kardama’s home as Kapila. Narayana was listening intently, when Kardama suddenly expressed, “I also want something worldly from you. Please grant […]

Tales from Srimad Bhagavatam: Matsya Avatar, the Incarnation of a Fish – V

Nilanjana retells the stories from the Srimad Bhagavatam, bringing alive the essential Indian wisdom of the yore. In the fifth part, she begins with the story of the Dashavatar of Narayana. It begins with Matsya Avatar, the fish incarnation of the Lord. It’s an enchanting story of a strange fish that was growing and becoming larger and larger. Satyavrata, […]

Tales from Srimad Bhagavatam: The Remedy – IV

Nilanjana retells the stories from the Srimad Bhagavatam, bringing alive the essential Indian wisdom of the yore. In the fourth part, she tells us about the remedy of the curse on Parikshit. Suka, the son of Sage Vyasa came to visit Parikshit. The king was delighted by his good fortune. He asked Suka the same question, “How does one, who […]

Tales from Srimad Bhagavatam: The Curse – III

Nilanjana retells the stories from the Srimad Bhagavatam, bringing alive the essential Indian wisdom of the yore. In the third part of the narrative, she tells us about the curse on Parikshit, caused by his rashness. The good king, in a fit of frustration, put the skin of a dead snake around the neck of the great sage, Shamika, whose […]

Tales from Srimad Bhagavatam: The Spark-II

Nilanjana retells the stories from the Srimad Bhagavatam, bringing alive the essential Indian wisdom of the yore. In the second part of the narrative, she tells us about Sage Narada revealing to Ved Vyas the mysteries of his earlier birth. Here Ved Vyas is surprised how the son of Brahma could have a mortal past. Find out about […]

Tales from the Srimad Bhagavatam: The Beginning – I

Nilanjana retells the stories from the Srimad Bhagavatam1 , bringing alive the essential Indian wisdom of the yore. In the first part of the serialising the Hindu Holy Book, she recapitulates the doubts and confusions in the mind of a wise man, Ved Vyas, who authored the Vedas and the Mahabharata. When his gaze turns inwards, Narada visits […]