Deity Pandurang’s affection for his devotees
Saint Tukaram Maharaj was an ardent devotee of Deity Pandurang. He was always engrossed in chanting Pandurang’s name. Once, it was his father’s death anniversary and two priests were invited. After the rituals the priests were to be given some fruits and dakshina. The family members could have their food only after the rituals were completed and the priests had their food.
To prepare for the rituals, Jijai gave Tukaram a list of things to be bought and told him to return as soon as possible. On reaching the outskirts of his village, Tukaram observed that a farmer was harvesting his crops. The farmer beckoned Tukaram and offered him money as well as some grains, if he would assist in reaping the crop. Tukaram readily agreed and got down to the task. He was engrossed in chanting while doing the work. He forgot that Jijai had asked him to buy things of the afternoon rituals. Soon it was noon time. The priests were about to arrive. Jijai was panic stricken and didn’t know what to do. Shortly, Tukaram arrived with all the material needed. Jijai immediately started the preparation. Tukaram went to the riverside and bathed. By then, the priests had also arrived and they started the rituals. One the rituals were completed Tukaram offered them bananas, guava and some milk. The priests blessed Tukaram and left. After that everybody had their food. Tukaram told Jijau that he would now go the temple and take some rest.
When Jijau finished her food and came out, she saw Tukaram coming towards the house. He looked very tired and was covered with dirt. She was surprised to see him in that condition. She ran towards the temple. But there was nobody there. She came home and told Tukaram all that had happened. Tukaram closed his eyes, joined his hands and prayed to Pandurang. Then he understood what actually had happened. Tears of bhav (spiritual emotion) started flowing from his eyes. With happiness he told Jijau,”You are fortunate. Today Pandurang came in my form and blessed all of you! He brought all the things you had asked me to buy and managed today’s rituals. A farmer on the outskirts of our village asked me to help him harvest his crops. I went there and completely forgot about the rituals. Today Pandurang saved my honour!
Dear chlidren, did you see the the power of chanting God’s name? Pandurang himself took Tukaram’s form and brought all the material and handled the ceremony. He saved the honour of his devotee, who forgot his own existence when he was engrossed in chanting while working in field.