Kathopanishad

The Boy who looked straight in the eyes of Death

  • This is the story of a young teenager, Nachiketa.
  •  One day his father Vajashrava undertakes to conduct a ritual of giving away all he has to Brahmans.
  • At the time of culmination, Nachiketa observes that all his father was giving away were hardly his prized possessions. The cows given in gift, were well past their prime.

 

  • It  dawns on him that the ritual was conducted with sole intention of earning praise and recognition.
  •  Desirous to remedy the folly, he intervenes, only to be ignored by his father.
  • Nachiketa continues his contemplation. He realises that he is the most prized possession of his father. Somehow he feels that he should be gifted away by his father to retrieve the situation.
  •  He decides to ask his father whom he intended to offer his only son to.
  •  The father, supremely satisfied with his own conduct initially does not pay heed to his query.
  • Nachiketa persists.
  •  infuriated at son’s temerity, the father declares that the son goes to Yama, the God of Death..
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