Sudama was Lord Krishna’s childhood friend from his Gurukul days. They both studied at Guru Sandeepani’s ashram together. After completing education Lord Krishna went on to become King while he ended up as a poor Brahman but a great devotee of Lord Krishna. Later in life, when Sudama was suffering from terrible poverty, not even having enough to feed his family and children, his wife Vasundhara prompted him to seek help from his old Gurukul friend Lord Krishna.
Poor Sudama Was Rich in Spiritual Wealth
If seen from a spiritual perspective, Sudama ji was very rich. Nobody possessed the spiritual wealth as much as he had. But if seen from materialistic perspective, he was very poor. But how did he end up being so poor? Guru Sandeepani was renowned Guru and he (his previous life from Satyanarayan katha) was a brilliant scholar, so how come he still ended in such poverty, in spite of such great education.
In order to know the real reason behind this we will have to look at the following story:
Poor Old Brahman Lady’s Story
There was an old Brahman Lady, who was very poor. She spent her life by asking for alms. Once she did not get any alms for five days. The devout Brahman lady, sustained on drinking water only and kept on chanting God’s name. She used to offer her food to Lord first before eating.
On the sixth day, she got two handfuls of grams in alms. She took them happily and proceeded towards her cottage. When she reached home, it had already become dark. She decided that she will not eat them at night and will eat the grams tomorrow after offering it to Lord Vasudev. Thinking thus, the poor Brahman lady wrapped the grams in a small sacket of cloth and went to bed, chanting the of Lord Vasudev.
Sacket of Grams Was Stolen
But the ways of fate are strange. It is said: It is not people who are strong, but the time is.
While Brahman lady was asleep, some thieves entered her cottage to steal. They searched everywhere but could not find anything. Finally, they got hold of the sacket of grams in cloth. They mistook it for a bundle of gold coins. Before they could confirm, Brahman lady woke up and started shouting for help. All villagers ran to catch the thieves. The thief ran away with the poor lady’s sacket. For the fear of getting caught, all the thieves hid themselves in Sandeepani Muni’s ashram, which was nearby village only.
Lord Shri Krishna and Sudama were studying at Sandeepani Muni’s Gurukul Ashram (Learn How Gurukula changed Satyakam Jabali’s life). Gurumata (Wife of Sandeepani Muni) sensed that someone came inside the ashram. She went ahead to check for the intruders. The thieves understood that someone is coming to search in their direction. They got scared and ran away from the ashram. In their haste, they forgot the sacket of grams while fleeing. And all thieves ran away but left the sacket of grams behind.
Curse of Poverty
While the old Brahman Lady found out that her sacket of grams was missing. Anguished by prolonged hunger and the treacherous turn of fate she cursed, “Whoever eats the grams stolen from such poor and ill-fated soul as mine, he will become poor too.”
Sacket Of Grams Was Found
Next day morning, at Sandeepani Muni’s Ashram, Gurumata was cleaning the ashram. She found the sacket. She opened it and found grams in it.
Boy Sudama and his friend Krishna were going to bring wood from the forest like every day. Gurumata gave the sacket of grams to Sudama and said,” Son! Keep these grams with you. When both of you feel hungry, distribute it equally and eat.”
Curse Of Poverty Accepted by Sudama
Sudama Ji was a born ‘Brahmagyani’ (A realized soul from birth). As soon as he took to sacket of grams in his hands, he came to know the ill fate associated with it.
He thought, “Guru Mata has said that this gram has to be equally distributed between him and Krishna. But if I feed these grams to Shri Krishna, who is Lord of all everything; then entire creation will have to bear the brunt of the old lady’s curse. Entire creation will become poor. There will be hunger (How to face hunger during fast) and misery everywhere.
Even if I throw these grams to the ground, then ground itself will become infertile and there will be famine and drought everywhere. No-no I will not let this happen. I will not let my Lord become poor or let his creation suffer, while I am alive. I will never do such a thing. I will eat all these grams myself, but I will not feed them to Lord Krishna.”
And he ate all the grams himself. He took the curse of poverty upon himself by eating those grams. But he did not give it to his friend Shri Krishna. Such are true friends. If you want to be friend, be a friend having a heart like Sudama.
Jai Jai Shri Radhe Krishna!
सुदामाजी को गरीबी क्यों मिली
गरीबी ने सुदामा जी को बहुत कठिन दिन दिखाए
आज तक आपको ये जानकारी नहीं होगी कि सुदामा जी गरीब थे तो क्यो ? अगर अध्यात्मिक दृष्टिकोण से देखा जाये तो सुदामा जी बहुत धनवान थे।जितना धन उनके पास था किसी के पास नहीं था। लेकिन अगर भौतिक दृष्टि से देखा जाये तो सुदामाजी बहुत निर्धन थे। आखिर सुदामा को गरीबी क्यों मिली ? इसके पीछे एक मार्मिक कथा छुपी हुई है।
गरीब बुढ़िया की कथा
एक ब्राह्मणी थी जो बहुत निर्धन थी। भिक्षा माँग कर जीवन-यापन करती थी।एक समय ऐसा आया कि पाँच दिन तक उसे भिच्छा नहीं मिली। वह प्रति दिन पानी पीकर भगवान का नाम लेकर सो जाती थी। छठवें दिन उसे भिक्षा में दो मुट्ठी चना मिले । कुटिया पे पहुँचते-पहुँचते रात हो गयी। ब्राह्मणी ने सोंचा अब ये चने रात मे नही खाऊँगी प्रात:काल वासुदेव को भोग लगाकर तब खाऊँगी । यह सोंचकर ब्राह्मणी ने चनों को कपडे़ में बाँधकर रख दियाऔर वासुदेव का नाम जपते-जपते सो गयी।
चने की पोटली की चोरी
देखिये समय का खेल कहते हैं: पुरुष बली नहीं होत है, समय होत बलवान।
ब्राह्मणी के सोने के बाद कुछ चोर चोरी करने के लिए उसकी कुटिया मे आ गये। इधर उधर बहुत ढूँढा, चोरों को वह चनों की बँधी पुटकी मिल गयी। चोरों ने समझा इसमें सोने के सिक्के हैं । इतने मे ब्राह्मणी जाग गयी और शोर मचाने लगी। गाँव के सारे लोग चोरों को पकडने के लिए दौडे़। चोर वह पुटकी लेकर भागे। पकडे़ जाने के डर से सारे चोर संदीपन मुनि के आश्रम में छिप गये।
संदीपन मुनि का आश्रम गाँव के निकट था, जहाँ भगवान श्री कृष्ण (हरे कृष्ण महामंत्र)और सुदामा शिक्षा ग्रहण कर रहे थे। गुरुमाता को लगा कि कोई आश्रम के अन्दर आया है। गुरुमाता देखने के लिए आगे बढीं तो चोर समझ गये कोई आ रहा है, चोर डर गये और आश्रम से भागे ! भागते समय चोरों से वह पुटकी वहीं छूट गयी।और सारे चोर भाग गये।
गरीब भक्तिन ब्राह्मणी का श्राप
इधर भूख से व्याकुल ब्राह्मणी ने जब जाना ! कि उसकी चने की पुटकी चोर उठा ले गये ।तो ब्राह्मणी ने श्राप दे दिया कि ” मुझ दीनहीन असहाय के जो भी चने खायेगा वह दरिद्र हो जायेगा। “
चने मिल गए
उधर प्रात:काल गुरु माता आश्रम मे झाडू़ लगाने लगीं तो झाडू लगाते समय गुरु माता को वही चने की पुटकी मिली । गुरु माता ने पुटकी खोल के देखी तो उसमे चने थे। सुदामा जी और कृष्ण भगवान जंगल से लकडी़ लाने जा रहे थे। रोज की तरह, गुरुमाता ने वह चने की पुटकी सुदामा जी को दे दी और कहा बेटा ! जब वन मे भूख लगे तो दोनो लोग यह चने खा लेना।
सुदामा जी ने जानबूझकर श्राप स्वीकार किया
सुदामा जी जन्मजात ब्रह्मज्ञानी थे। ज्यों ही चने की पुटकी सुदामा जी ने हाथ में लिया त्यों ही उन्हे सारा रहस्य मालुम हो गया।सुदामा जी ने सोचा ! गुरु माता ने कहा है यह चने दोनों लोग बराबर बाँट के खाना। लेकिन ये चने अगर मैंने त्रिभुवनपति श्री कृष्ण को खिला दिये तो सारी शृष्टी दरिद्र हो जायेगी। नहीं-नहीं मैं ऐसा नही करुँगा। मेरे जीवित रहते मेरे प्रभु दरिद्र हो जायें मै ऐसा कदापि नही करुँगा । मैं ये चने स्वयं खा जाऊँगा लेकिन कृष्ण को नहीं खाने दूँगा और सुदामा जी ने सारे चने खुद खा लिए।
दरिद्रता का श्राप सुदामा जी ने स्वयं ले लिया। चने खाकर। लेकिन अपने मित्र श्री कृष्ण को एक भी दाना चना नही दिया। ऐसे होते हैं मित्र ! सबसे निवेदन है कि अगर मित्रता करें तो सुदामा जी जैसी करें।
जय जय श्री राधे कृष्ण!
Q1. What is the name of Sudama wife?
A. His wife’s name was Vasundhara
Q2. Who was Sudama’s best friend?
A. Lord Krishna. Because he is an eternal devotee of Lord Shri Krishna from Goloka abode. For him Shri Krishna was, is and will remain best friend and Ishta forever.
Q3. How did Sudama become rich?
A. Just by the merit of donating two fistfuls of rice(poha) to God himself Lord Shri Krishna. Lord Shri Krishna made it manyfold and removed the poverty of his dearest friend.
Q4. Why did Krishna Wash Sudama’s feet?
A. Sudama was Lord Shri Krishna’s guest, dear friend and Brahman at the same time. As guest it was hospitality dharma at that time to wash feet of guests. As beloved friend Lord Krishna was moved to tears looking at his wounded bare feet from a long travel and out of love, he washed the feet. And as Brahman he was devout, steadfast, and pious devotee of God, hence washing feet of such Brahaman carries great merit; not everyone is blessed to have such good luck opportunity in their lifetime, thus this was also a reason why Lord Shri Krishna washed the feet of Sudama.
Q5. Poor in Hindi- What do we call poor in Hindi?
A. Poor people are termed in various ways in Hindi, some of these are Nirdhan निर्धन (Nir=without, Dhan=Money), Gareeb गरीब, Kangaal कंगाल, Daridra दरिद्र, Lakshmiheen लक्ष्मीहीन , Shriheen श्रीहीन etc. However, remember the ascetics and saintly people and Brahmans may beg in India but they are never called poor. First because it is standard practice to bring down ego which is necessary for their spiritual development and in fact, they may not have money but have big spiritual wealth and with blessings only they can change the fate of other people.
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