by TRS Iyengar
Once there was a Guru who taught prayer
and methods from Vedic scriptures to a number of Students. The students were very obedient and never went against the Guru's
Every evening, the students would assemble in a Hall
where the Guru would teach them the prayer versus and slokhas for them to learn. On one such evening, while the prayer class
was on, a brown kitten entered the hall. The Guru immediately gave asylum to the kitten and since then the kitten started
living in the Ashram.
One fine evening, when the prayer class was about to
start, the kitten started playing and thus diverted the students' attention. So the Guru thought of putting an end to this
menace and he told a disciple student to tie the kitten to a pillar in the prayer hall, for which he handed a red silk ribbon
which was used to tie the Vedic scripts and manuals. Also, the Guru instructed the student to tie the brown cat to the pillar
in the prayer hall, every evening before start of the prayer and to free it only after the prayer class was over. This he
thought, would stop the cat from playing around while the prayer class was on.
This practice was continued everyday for a long time,
prior to start of the prayer a student used to tie the brown cat in the pillar. One day, the cat died, and the worried students,
went in search for another brown cat and found one to tie in the prayer hall. The Guru was unaware of this and kept on teaching
After a few years, the Guru too passed away. Then a
new person took over as Guru of the Ashram and he too allowed the students to tie the brown cat to the pillar of the prayer
hall, without knowing the reason, nor did he check with anybody about this practice.
Days passed on, many students had come and gone as also
many Gurus changed. However, the practice of tying a brown cat in the prayer hall continued, no one knowing the reason nor
did anyone bother to check.
After a few generations, a gentleman came forward to
write the history of the Ashram in details and wrote everything in praise of the Ashram. The concluding note read:
"The evening prayer of this Ashram is a very typical
one, IT IS A MUST to tie a brown cat in the prayer hall, with a Red color Ribbon before the start of daily evening prayer."
This story has NO direct or indirect link to today's
Srivaishnavam sampradayam and/or Hinduism. If any one feels so, it is not my fault because that is it! About 35 years
ago, my father told me this story (oh, then it was a black cat!) in such a way in Tamil & still I am with a fresh memory
about this one.
(P.S.: The story involved a black kitten. I, however,
have changed the color to brown, and showing you, the picture of a yellow one...tell me how you feel about it!)
If this goes left to right is a bad omen!So, showing it right to Left!!