Tales from Srimad Bhagavatam: The Story of Ajamila – XII

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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 and named the youngest son was called ’. On his deathbed, Ajamila kept on remembering his youngest son, . The assistants of Yama (Lord of Death) wanted to take his soul away, but Narayana’s men also arrived there at the right time. “He was not calling out to the Divine, Narayana, but his son.” Yama’s assistants pointed out rightly. “Yes, you are right, but the name of our Lord is good enough. The reason is not important. Neither is the emotion. Merely remembering the name can rescue anyone from any sin.” Narayana’s men pointed out. Yama explains the greatness of Narayana, in the weekly column, exclusively for .

Ajamila 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 children and named the youngest son was called ‘Narayana’. Though this was supposed to be coincidental, it is believed that coincidence is also dictated by divine will.

On his deathbed, Ajamila kept on remembering his youngest son, Narayana. The assistants of Yama (Lord of Death) wanted to take his soul away, but Narayana’s men also arrived there at the right time. “He was not calling out to the Divine, Narayana, but his son.” Yama’s assistants pointed out rightly.

“Yes, you are right, but the name of our Lord is good enough. The reason is not important. Neither is the emotion. Merely remembering the name can rescue anyone from any sin.” Narayana’s men pointed out.

The assistants of Narayana continued to explain, “Is a little lamp not enough to dispel darkness? Similarly, the darkness of ignorance can just be dispelled by remembering the Divine, in any form, with any excuse.”

Yama’s assistants looked puzzled, so they suggested, “If you don’t get it, go back and ask your master, Yama.”

The assistants of Yama were left with no choice. They left the soul of Ajamila and went back to Yamlok (the world where Yama resides) to meet Yama.

His assistants updated Yama about Ajamila and how they were not allowed to take his soul away. “This has never happened in the past,” they explained, “but this time we could not match up to the authority of Narayana’s assistants.”

 

Yama did not look annoyed at all. He pleasantly elaborated, “While I have all the power to punish mortals, I and obey Narayana. The way a piece of cloth is woven by threads, in the same way, the world is woven by the presence of Narayana. All the gods and demi-gods are yet to realise the complete glory of Narayana. They are not even able to grasp his maya (illusory ). Human beings are veiled by and caught up in the play of the senses; that blinds them to the truth that there is a seer within. They live their life with this ignorance. However, if one remembers the Divine at any point of time, one is in the path of Bhakti Yoga. Just by taking Narayan’s name, Ajamila was saved.”

Meanwhile, Ajamila was released from the clutches of death. He realised his folly and how he had wasted his life submitting to useless temptations. Because of his momentary contact with the Divine, Ajamila was able to move on from his worldly attachments. His sincerity and eagerness to unite with the Divine soon reached its fruition.

Footnote: Srimad Bhagavatam is often called the Bhagavad Purana. Authored by Ved Vyasa, the are about the various (incarnations) of Lord Vishnu, also known as Narayana.

©Nilanjana Dey

Photos from the internet.

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Nilanjana Dey

Nilanjana Dey

A story-teller at heart, Nilanjana Dey is on a journey to experiment with fiction and poetry. Her first , largely aimed towards children, is titled ‘The Adventures of Puti – The Cheese Trail’. Her poems have been published at various prestigious portals. An alumni of English Literature from Jadavpur University (Kolkata), she is a marketing and communication professional based in Mumbai. She volunteers with a Mumbai based NGO working with the marginalised sections of the society.
Nilanjana Dey
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