Dvisahasri of Tembesvami (Summary and Study)

by Upadhyay Mihirkumar Sudhirbhai | 2012 | 54,976 words

This page relates ‘Reviving a dead one’ of the study of the Dvisahasri by Tembesvami:—a Sanskrit epic poem (mahakavya) narrating the legend and activities of Lord Dattatreya, including details on his divine sports and incarnations. Also known as Datta, he is considered one of the Holy Masters in the Natha cult imparting spiritual knowledge and adequate practice to the aspirant.

Chapter 12 - Reviving a dead one

[Note: This page represents a summary English translation of the Dvisāhasrī by Ṭembesvāmī, chapter 12.—In the 12th chapter (it is narrated that) the The Holy Master removes the problem of a ghost as well as grants a son to a Brahmin woman and revives the dead son.]

12/01-02: Nāmadhāraka spoke: On His going away from there, how the desires of the worshipping ones can be fulfilled (02).

12/03-06: Siddha spoke: All this is His Mortal Sports. He becomes that whatever one thinks for Him, (04-05). He fulfils the desires of true devotees (06).

12/07-15: Brahmin lady is unhappy, because of her son’s death. She approaches the Brahmins (07). One of the Brahmins inspired by Him predicts it to be due to Fate i.e. the fruit of the previous birth (08-09). He enumerates the sins resulting in the next birth such as, killing a Brahmin, embryo-killing, cow-killing, horse-killing and stealing Brahmin’s money (10-12). She has taken the money of a Brahmin of Śaunaka clan who devours her children (13). The exhaustion of the past deeds is by their suffering (14). She asks to show the way to release (15).

12/16-19: The Brahmin spoke: She should perform the expiatory rite as well as the ancestral rite and practise a month-long vow with her husband. She should take bath in confluence, worship His wooden shoes, feed Brahmins and should give 100 rupees to a Brahmin of Śaunaka clan.

12/20-24: The Brahmin lady: She has no money yet would worship Him. She does accordingly and the ghost appears in her dream asking for money. She goes to His place. He asks the ghost why he disturbs her.

12/25-26: The ghost spoke: He wants his money only.

12/27-31: Holy Master spoke: He promises him to offer his money to one of his clan. If he leaves her, He would release him. (29-31).

12/32-41: Ghost spoke: He admits what He says. The Holy Master tells her to follow it without any excuse (33-34). Both would be released by following His advice. The Holy Master disappears from her dream and she awakes. (35) She informs her husband. She follows His words and gets free from sin. The ghost is also free (36).

Next day in a dream He gives two fruits to eat after feeding the Brahmin (37). She and her husband eat the fruit. She becomes pregnant (38). Then she begets two sons. The Brahmin performs all rites. At the time of sacred thread ceremony the eldest son dies. She laments (39-41).

12/42-63: Brahmin lady spoke: She laments sorrowfully (43-48ab). The people consol her that she should not grieve, as the death is destined (48cd -50). She is not ready to accept His statement to be futile (52- 53). She does not give the body of her dead son for funeral (54). Meanwhile an ascetic arrives there and speaks to her (55).

12/56-63: Ascetic[1] spoke: There is no reason of grieving, because the individual soul is unborn, omnipresent and infinite. This world is like the magical activity and the body is unreal (56-59). The relations like the mother and the son etc. are beyond understanding (61-62). The dead one never returns (63).

12/64-65: She spoke: She does not like the Vedantic philosophy. Her son must not die. No one would trust on Him.

12/66-67:Ascetic spoke: She should go to that holy place (67).

12/68-78: She goes to the hermitage of the Holy Master (68). The Brahmins go home, while the couple stays there with the dead body (69). She gets asleep and in her dream she asks Him what harm He has done to her (70). As He has put the Prāṇa in her son, she should not grieve (71). She gets up, sees her son alive and is happy (72). The Brahmin eulogises the Lord. In the morning the Brahmins come and see the boy alive (73-74). The couple worships Him, pays homage and goes home (75). The boy becomes knowledgeable and lives long (76).

12/77-78: H. H. Nṛsiṃhasarasvatī resides there. Those who worship Him at the confluence of rivers Kṛṣṇā and Veṇī, would get desired object.[2]

Footnotes and references:


The verse 12/56 is an verse in the published text, though not mentioned in the -text.


The verse 12/78 is noted by H.H. Ṭembesvāmi himself as an interpolated one.

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