Shiva
The Story of Aśokadatta and Kapālasphoṭaka Long ago, there lived a brāhmaṇa by name Govindasvāmī in an agrahāra on the banks of the river Kālindī. He had two sons: Aśokadatta and Vijayadatta. Once, that region was afflicted by a great famine. Having gifted away the few possessions he owned to his near and dear ones, he left for Kāśī along with his wife and two sons. On the way, he chanced upon a great ascetic and enquired about the future of his...
 
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estuary2
The Story of Harasvāmī A mendicant named Harasvāmī lived in the town of Kusumapura. His abode was a humble hut on the shores of the Gaṅgā. He lived on alms and had earned renown as a venerable sage. Kusumapura however had its share of rogues who were unhappy with Harasvāmī being held in high esteem by the people of the town. One day when he was on his way to seek alms, one of those evil men remarked loudly: ‘Did you know that this rogue...
 
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Early next morning Śiva came to the maṭha. Mādhava hailed a messenger in the morning and ordered him – “Take this pair of clothes, hand it over to the rāja-purohita Śaṅkara-svāmī and tell him, ‘A prince named Mādhava, having been defeated by his cousins, has come from the Dakṣiṇāpatha, bringing along with him the immense wealth that once belonged to his father. There are other men of royal birth who have come with him as well. He to serve his...
 
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Varanasi
Caturdārikā-lambaka   मदघूर्णितवक्त्रोत्थैः सिन्दूरैश्छुरयन्महीम्। हेरम्बः पातु वो विघ्नान् स्वतेजोभिर्दहन्निव॥ (Kathā-sarit-sāgara 5.1.1) Gaṇeśa’s intoxicated nodding of head is making sindhūra applied on his face fall off, whose sprinkling on the ground is colouring the earth – it appears as though, his tejas is sprinkling forth to remove obstacles Vatsarāja’s only worry was his son’s well-being. To ease his concerns, Yaugandharāyaṇa...
 
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By then, Śaṅkhacūḍa spotted them from a distance and shouted – ‘O Garuḍa! Don’t, don’t! He is not a nāga, it is me! Why are you suddenly under an illusion?’ Hearing this, Garuḍa was confused and panicked. Jīmūtavāhana was distressed because the task he had taken up did not find completion. From his conversations with Śaṅkhacūḍa, Garuḍa understood that the person he ate was a vidyādhara and was immensely pained. Garuḍa decided that he had to...
 
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By then she had gotten off the lion and had collected flowers from the lake for the lord’s worship. Pulindaka bowed down to her solemnly. The surprised maiden asked him who he was and how he managed to reach these hazardous regions. He said: ‘O lady, I am a hunter and a devotee of Śiva. I came here to hunt elephants for the pearls embedded in their heads. As soon as I saw you, I remembered Vasudatta, my friend who saved my life. He is the...
 
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Piṅgalikā’s Story “Lady! In the kingdom of Mālava lived a brahmana named Agnidatta. He had two sons named Śaṅkaradatta and Śāntikara. At a very young age Śāntikara left home in his quest of learning. Nobody knew where he went. Śaṅkaradatta married me. My father-in-law died later. My mother-in-law followed him doing Sahagamana. Since I was pregnant, my husband left me there and traveled and unable to overcome the loss of his parents, committed...
 
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karṇa-tāla-balāghāta- sīmantita-kulācalaḥ| panthānam-iva siddhīnāṃ diśaṃ jayati vighnajit|| (Kathā-sarit-sāgara 4.1.1) Victory to that vanquisher of obstacles (i.e., Ganeśa), who has parted the mountains with the forceful flapping of his ears resulting in lines that seem like the paths of attainment! 1. And thus, while Vatsarāja was peacefully spending his days in food, drink, song and dance, hunting, and other activities, one day...
 
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War sculpture
Vatsarāja called Yaugandharāyaṇa in secret and said, “My friend! Thanks to your political acumen all kings have been defeated. I don’t think anyone will betray me. But I still have my doubts about Brahmadatta!” He replied, “O king! I know Brahmadatta won’t betray you for sure; if he does it would be his death!” Saying so he narrated the following story —   The Story of Phalabhūti Once upon a time, there lived a brāhmaṇa named Agnidatta in Padma-...
 
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Merchant
Yaugandharāyaṇa then spoke to Vatsarāja. He said ‘O king, the divine is on your side and you have immense strength too. We are experts in the art of governance. Therefore, set out on your digvijaya – conquering expedition at the earliest.’ Listening to his Prime Minister’s suggestion, the king of Vasta said – ‘Let this wait for a moment. There can be several impediments for auspicious activities.  Therefore, I will first worship Śiva. Is it even...
 
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