(The Elephant King)
was the King of elephants.
hot day, he proceeded to the lake with his family to cool off
in its fresh waters.
from within the lake a crocodile appeared who attacked him and
would not let go of him.
around him was so frightened of the crocodile, that they left
poor Gajendra alone to fend for himself.
Gajendra knew that God would help him and be by his side.
Gajendra prayed. If you do not know long prayers, it is
alright, speaking to God and telling him your troubles is also
that is what Gajendra did!
help me O Lord! Save me!
can only be saved by Your Grace!
Lord rushed to Gajendra’s aid. The latter offered the Lord a
attacked the crocodile and saved His Loved One.
in his previous life was a great devotee called Indradyumna
who was also a great king. One day, Agastya, a great sage came
to visit the king. Indradyumna did not receive the Sage with
the respect that the latter expected. The enraged Agastya
cursed the king to become an elephant in his next birth.
crocodile in its last life was a king called Huhu.
while enjoying himself in the waters, he pulled the leg of a
sage. The enraged sage cursed the king to become a crocodile
in his next life. The repentant Huhu asked for pardon. The
Sage proclaimed that though he could not take back the curse,
the crocodile would be forgiven of his sins when Gajendra
would be saved by the Lord God Himself.
story of Gajendra teaches us that it does not matter if you
have the body or intelligence of an animal, all you require is
a loving heart and God will protect you.
Thank you for posting this wonderful story. I would like to share some of the lessons that can be derived from Gajendra's story.
1. Gajendra, in his previous life as King Indradyumna, was a great devotee. So when he took next birth as elephant because of Agastya Muni's curse, Gajendra still remembered the Lord and the devotional mantra that he was used to chant as King Indradyumna. By the mercy of the Lord, at the time of his most need, Gajendra remembered to call out for his Lord. Gajendra was fighting with the Crocodile for 1000 years. During this time, his powerful elephant friends and relatives tried to help him by pulling him from behind. But nothing worked. Then Gajendra deeply thought for a while and by the mercy of his devotional service in the previous life, concluded - "No body can help me in this difficult situation. Only the Supreme Lord Sri Vishnu can save me now" and started to pray. This is proof positive that whatever devotional service one performs is one's eternal asset and is carried from
one birth to next until one attains liberation.
2. King Indradyumna did not receive Sri Agastya Muni with the required etiquette and therefore he fell victim to anger of the Sage. Therefore we should always be very very careful and respectful to the great devotees of the Lord.