I did not care much about that shepherd as my focus was only to escape from the wild animals. As I went by, the pathway to Jwala Narasimha Swamy temple was seen. I gave a big sigh of relief as I saw people going in small groups towards the temple. I was walking fast all the while and now began to walk slowly. From the time I reached Ahobilam, unrelated incidents are happening continuously and I was not sure if I have to take them as miracle or the effects of karma. Whatever be it, I offer it all to Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy, I thought.
The comet and what the Maha Muni said related to it, made me think that it is true that something is going to happen in this land of Bhartha (India). Somehow, I have fulfilled the promise I made to the Ahobila Mutt in-charge of Tirumala by visiting this mutt here. Whatever will happen hereafter will be for the good, this faith got so deep rooted in me when I was in the Jwala Narasimha Swamy’s shrine. Jwala means blazing fire. The face of this Narasimha seemed bigger than the other Narasimha’s. How much anger He must have got before he killed Hiranyakasipu could be seen if we see the Jwala Narasimha. But at the same time, if one has the darshan of this Lord with devotion, one can spot infinite mercy as well!
For me, He appeared with so much of mercy that day, true.
The priest came out of the shrine while I was having darshan and looked at my hand, the Nadi.
He asked in Tamil, “What is this?”
When I heard Tamil words, I felt so happy. It is a strange pleasure we feel if we hear our mother tongue elsewhere. I narrated what it is briefly.
“Can we read in this shrine?” – his tone was calm and steady.
“Yes we could, but I am not clean. I have roamed around along and am sweating. There are certain rules to read Agastya Muni’s Jeeva Nadi. Only if we follow them, we can speak to Him.”
“This is a temple right, there won’t be any shortage to cleanliness right?”
“Very true. But I have to take bath to read the Nadi.”
“That’s all right? I shall make the arrangements, will also give fresh garments.”
“Very well then.” – I nodded. He made all arrangements and I prayed to Agastya Muni after cleansing myself.
Nothing came out of the Nadi.
I was shocked. I tried not once, twice or thrice but many times. He did not appear. That’s all I thought, it is like the Betal which climbs up the tree in Vikramadithya’s story that happens here with me. Only relief, the priest did not come and sit near me till now. I was worried that Agastya Muni should appear before the priest comes here. I prayed to Lakshmi Narasimha to relieve me out of this dilemma.
I prayed earnestly and with great reverence, I opened the Jeeva Nadi again. The light that appears at once for some reasons did not appear at all. Something seriously has gone wrong or else, why did the Maha Muni not appear? I could feel the fear inside. I closed the Nadi. Let the priest come, I shall tell the truth. If he asks further, let me hand over this to him and walk away freely, I decided.
I wore my own clothes again and was waiting to hand over the garments that he gave me, but he did not come. That shepherd came, helped and went away. This priest came, asked to read the Nadi and said ‘I’ll be right back’ and he went away and hasn’t come back for the past one hour. What is the relation between me and this hill-temple? Why such things happen? If I wanted to ask Agastya Muni, He does not appear. I thought ‘No need of Nadi or anything’, I prayed to Lakshmi Narasimha, rolled the Jeeva Nadi in the dhothi that the Bhattacharya (priest) gave and kept it in a place that no one can see and came out quietly. I did not want to be noticed by the priest and so I paid my obeisance from a distance and started getting down the stairs faster.
On my way, whomever I saw appeared like the Bhattacharya of Jwala Mukhi Narasimha. I do not know why I should be scared of him but I did feel that I committed a mistake unknowingly. I should not have left the Jeeva Nadi like that there, but why did I do so? I do not understand. I came down and felt happy that no one spotted me or asked me anything. I should have asked more details about the comet. He did not explain that further, but all that happens is for good, I thought.
I vacated my room and came out with my baggage. I felt it was a mistake to not to have informed my parents or in my office. Now the Nadi is not in hands either. Will I get Agastya Muni’s grace or not? I do not know. But I can roam around freely. I will become responsible in my family and thereby my parents will feel relieved. I can be the good boy they wanted, this thought urged me and I reached the bus stand.
My eyes saw none other than the Bhattacharya of Jwala Mukhi Narasimha Swamy temple, the one whom I wanted to avoid seeing, was coming towards me with the Jeeva Nadi bundle.
He was all smiley, “Looks like you forgot the Jeeva Nadi in a hurry there. Here, take.” I did not feel like saying anything. I blabbered something. He knew that whatever I said was completely lies but he did not argue and behaved magnanimously. I bent down my head in shame.
“Nothing came in the Nadi is it?” – he said this as if he is addressing someone else, and said, “Now if opened in this place and read, information will come. But don’t. Sit in the bus and read, Agastya Muni will say a lot many things.” – the Bhattacharya said this clairvoyance. [The author did not reveal what all the priest said. But it is true that I got goose pimps when I typed this. I read it myself again and I got the goose pimps again. Read it and feel it yourselves!]
I remained silent. I thought I shall read it till the bus comes. I began to read and the Agastya Maha Muni gave a whole lot of details. I read them all and looked up, only to see that the Bhattacharya was not to be seen! It must have been the son of the Three-Eyed-One Himself who came, my mind says.
The Ahobila incidents comes to an end with this.
~ to be continued…!