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20-04-2012, 12:11 PM
Post: #1
He was loitering around the hill town of Pandharpur. He looked neither relieved nor exasperated. He was rather amused at people flocking around desperate to get a glimpse of the deity. He never believed in God, but was not a stranger to Godly places.

He remembered his days in the boarding school, when all children around him would get excited to return back to their homes once vacation sets in while he had nowhere to go. He always used to feel at home at the temple fairs held around his boarding school. Today, when he was in a position to earn money, he had no one to keep company. He always felt lonely and loved to be in the midst of crowds. He felt at home in the maddening traffic to office and back. Sundays were rather boring for him. He never mingled with friends or like.

A long festival weekend made him go to Pandharpur. There was no reason behind it, but he felt the need to be there and just pass away his time. After a long sweaty travel in the train, he was here to witness madness at its best. People from all ages, language, caste, creed and class were pulling around with their baggages. The name of “Hari Hari Vitthal” was in many of their lips. It was a weekend of prayers and worship, as devotees flocked to the city to pay their respects to the deity. Special medical check-ups were also held for the Warkaris or pilgrims and mobile toilets were provided for their convenience. Thousands of ‘Warkaris’ accompanying palanquins of revered saints converged on the temple town of Pandharpur in Solapur district of Maharashtra to pay obeisance to Lord Vitthala. He could recognize most of their dialects as many were speaking Telugu.
People were jostling each other without any murmur. In working days at his city Mumbai, it would have meant rushing to office. But here, everyone had plenty of time in their hands, yet rushing towards the direction of the Lord. Standing in a corner, watching everything with folded hands, he was pushed by an elderly man holding a stick. His specs fell to the ground and developed cracks. He got infuriated and chased the old man and grabbed him by his neck. The old man pleaded agonizingly. The empty vessel fell out of his hand. The anger in him towards the old man changed to pity as he quickly bent down and lifted the vessel.

“Sorry Uncle”

The old man laughed and said, “I have no time dear Son, I have to take food for my little kunju”

He could see magnanimity as well as desperation in the old man’s face.

“Shall I come with you?”

He took the stick from the old man’s hand and held
the old man’s hand as both of them walked ahead.

The old man was rushing towards the tent where free food was being provided. Perhaps, his grand daughter must be feeling hungry, he thought.

Why was no one from the family to help the old man out, he again thought but did not bother to ask.

He stood quietly as he watched the old man jumping the queue amongst many angry faces and rushing to collect the Anna Prasadam.

The old man came out like a happy child who has just grabbed his ice-cream and carefully held the vessel as he held his hand and walked ahead.

“I have many eatables with me but my little kunju always desires for the temple prasadam. That is why I had to rush for her” The old man gleefully told him.

“Why did she not accompany you” He asked.

“Her feet will get burnt in this hot sun” came the old man’s quick toothy reply.

For a while, he forgot everything around as he expectantly accompanied the old man.

As the old man reached near a huge neem tree, he could hear someone calling out for the old man.

“Sonu, my little Sonu”
He was quite amused and stepped back. The old man looked here and there. An old woman came from behind the tree,

“Here you are little Sonu, you get easily fooled Na”
The old man grinned from ear to ear.
“What did you bring for me dear Sonu?”

He watched both of them with interest as the old man carefully opened the vessel and fed her.

“Give him also na” she pinched the old man.
He took a few and allowed them to have their time with each other.

He was touched by their love and affection and could not just stand there. So he walked ahead.
“Hey my dear son, hey come here.” The old man called him loudly.

They just were washing their hands after eating the temple prasadam.
“Where are you from?”
“Mumbai! I am from Kakinada. Give me your address. I will send you money for the broken specs.” The old man said.

“No, Uncle. It was not your fault. Do come home with your …”
“Hey, its my wife Sukanya and I am Hari. At this age, I cannot keep any girlfriend.” Grinned the old man as his wife blushed.
He had a hearty laugh.
“Do you have children, come home with them.” He said.
“Thank you very much dear son. We have no children. But I have no regrets. I love my wife Sukanya like my beloved daughter”
He was taken aback for a while. He gave them his address and walked with a lump in his throat.
The hot sun slowly slided down to dusk. He walked past the cool breeze in the evening on the banks of the Bhima River, where he witnessed a Satsang “Spiritual address” by a Saint who was addressing thousands of devotees.

The Saint was talking of the legendary Pundlik, an obedient and dutiful son, who lived in Pandharpur ages ago. For him the sole purpose of life was attending to his aged parents. Nothing else mattered. It is said that Lord Vishnu was so impressed by his devotion to his parents that he decided to express his appreciation in person. He, therefore, came to Pandharpur and announced himself. But Pundlik had no time for Him because he was busy attending to his parents. He threw a brick and asked Lord Vishnu, who had appeared in a human form as Vithal, to stand on it and wait. So, Vithal has been standing ever since on the brick, with his arms akimbo, waiting for Pundlik to find time for Him!
The God, who has been waiting patiently for several millennia for the day when the son will find time for Him.

He got emotionally charged as he was listening to the Satsang and could not stand there for another minute. If only his parents had not deserted him and given him all the joys of childhood – he knew it was a thing of the past and wishful thinking on his part. He felt angry at all these worthless sermons given in the name of God when everyone around the world was selfish and egoistic. Deep hatred engulfed him till he saw the same old couple holding hands like they were married just yesterday and engrossed in their thoughts.

He just could not take his eyes away from them. His eyes became wet. As he closed his eyes, tears trickled down. He could not wait any longer as he had to be back to Mumbai.
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[-] The following 1 user Likes sureshmiyer's post:
22-04-2012, 07:23 PM
Post: #2
Really nice ! clap

(20-04-2012 12:11 PM)sureshmiyer Wrote:  So, Vithal has been standing ever since on the brick, with his arms akimbo, waiting for Pundlik to find time for Him!
The God, who has been waiting patiently for several millennia for the day when the son will find time for Him.
Loved these lines Smile

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