English Translation of G T Sreedhara Sharma’s Shrīdhara Smarane – Part 1
By Ms.Vijaya Bhatta & Ms. Adya Bhatta, USA
Devotees used to invite Shrī Shrīdhara Swāmīji to their homes to accept their service of Pāda Pūja1. Shrī Shrīdhara Swāmīji too, whenever he had a chance, used to go and bless them. Once when Swāmīji had gone to Shīgehalli, a devotee, a prior acquaintance of Swāmīji, invited Him to their house for Pāda Pūja.
Having agreed, Swāmīji went to the devotee’s house. While He was finishing the Pāda Pūja, an extremely poor neighbor came and requested humbly, “I am poor, I am not capable of doing Your Pāda Pūja, but would You at least shed the dust of Your holy feet at my house?” To that, Swāmīji smiled and said, “sprinkle the dust from the street between your house and here. After the Pāda Pūja is done at this house, I will come into your house and walk around. You can think of that as the dust from my feet.” Accordingly, the devotee took the dust from the street, and sprinkled it where asked, including some places in his house, and waited for Swāmīji. After accepting the Pāda Pūja service in the first house, Swāmīji went to this devotee’s house and was touched by his devotion. The devotee washed the holy feet of Shrī Swāmīji, drank the Pāda tīrtha, the holy water and took Swāmīji inside the house. He offered milk and fruits to Swāmīji with great devotion. Everyone in the household did Pāda Pūja of Swāmīji with flowers, bel leaves and holy basil leaves as they sang with devotion and prostrated to Swāmīji. Having been pleased with the service by this household, Swāmīji walked around on the dust sprinkled in the house and left for the next house for Pāda Pūja. By the time this devotee returned home after seeing off Swāmīji, he was awestruck to see coins scattered around all the places in the house where Swāmīji had walked around. Overcome with joy, unaware of what to do, he told everything to Swāmīji. Swāmīji replied, “keep some coins in your shrine and worship them; from the remaining money, use some of it for your expenses and give the rest in charity to the poor.” Thus blessing him, Swāmīji proceeded to the next house for Pāda Pūja. Ever since then, that devotee has been alleviated from poverty and has been living happily.
Knowing that their well-being is entirely due to Shrī Shrīdhara Swāmīji’s grace, his family prays to Swāmīji even today.
- Pāda Pūja is the worship of the holy feet of Swāmīji.
|| Jaya Jaya Shrīdharāya Namaḥ ||