Three Stories about Stupid Shepherds! (Post No.3701)

Written by London swaminathan


Date: 7 March 2017


Time uploaded in London:- 20-41


Post No. 3701


Pictures are taken from various sources; thanks.




Shepherds of India were uneducated and ignorant. There are lot of stories about their stupid acts. The most famous shepherd story was about Kalidasa. There was a king who had a very educated intelligent, but arrogant daughter. She refused to marry anyone because all of them were defeated by her in debates. The ministers lost their patience. So they were looking for a fool who can be presented as the greatest scholar and thus insult the arrogant princess.


As they were going through the country side they saw a shepherd who was sitting on upper branch of a tree and cutting down the lower part. They got hold of him and trained him in gestures. He learnt the sign language quickly because there were only two signs. They told him that he would get a big reward from the king if used the gestures to answer any question put to him.

The shepherd was taken in a palanquin to present him as the scholar cum prince of a neighbouring country. For every gesture princess showed he used the two gestures he was taught. Since ministers taught him the gestures they had ready  explanations for his gestures. They gave big philosophical explanations for both the gestures. The princess was very much impressed with his scholarship and married him.


During the first night, the princess came to the bridegroom’s chamber. But to her surprise he was fast asleep and snoring! She waited for several hours and yet he did not get up. The princess tried to wake him up by sprinkling some scented water. At that time the shepherd (scholar) was dreaming about his sheep. When he felt the sprinkled water, he was shouting to his sheep (in dream). When she threw some flowers on him, he was saying, “ Get away, you foolish sheep”.


Now the princess knew for sure that something went wrong. She understood that she was married to an idiot. She drew off her sword and woke him. She told him,”Tell me the truth. Who are you? If you do not speak now, I shall kill you.”


He confessed that he was a shepherd and he acted according the ministers’ instructions. Immediately the princess gave him some money and asked him to run away from the palace.


The shepherd felt ashamed and went and slept in a Kali (goddess) temple on his way. He started praying to her to give him true knowledge. Goddess also felt very sorry for him. She knew that he was punished for no fault of his. She asked him to open his mouth and wrote a magic spell on his tongue. From that moment he started composing poems. Later he became the most celebrated poet of India – Kalidasa.


Second Story

But not all the shepherds were as lucky as Kalidasa. There was a shepherd at the foothills of Western Ghats. He followed the trade of his forefathers. One day he missed a lamb when counting his flock. At once he started off in search of his lamb. He wandered about till mid-day. In the afternoon, he felt exhausted and thirsty. He looked down into a well for water holding one of his lambs on his neck. When he looked down into the well he saw his own reflection and the lamb in dim light deep inside the well. He grew angry and shouted, “Oh, robber; I have got you at last. Bring up my lamb, otherwise I will throw huge rocks into the well”. When he stooped down to pick up stones, his lamb on his neck fell into the well. Later he regretted his foolish action.


Shepherd and Robbers!

The third story is about a money lender and a shepherd. There was a money lender in a village who was in the habit of taking money to different villages. On a certain day, he took lot of cash and hired the service of a shepherd to take him through the forest. Shepherds knew those routes very well. Half way through, it became dark and so they had to lie down under a tree. Moneylender was afraid of the robbers and told his shepherd companion to lie down in a place without making any noise. He went to a nearby tree and slept under it. About mid night a gang of robbers passed that way. One of them said: “Look here! take care here is a log of wood lying down on our way; don’t knock against it”.

“You, idiots; Talk sensibly. Am I a log of wood? Will a piece of log in your town have hundred rupees in a piece of cloth around its waist?” – said the shepherd who was lying down. “Oh, here is fellow, catch him!” said the robbers. The shepherd lost his 100 rupees. One of the robbers had some doubt about the currency note. I wonder whether this note is false or true”.


The ignorant shepherd grew angry and shouted at the robbers, “What do you mean? If you have any doubt about the currency note, ask my Chettiar friend who deals with money every day. He is lying there.”


“Ho, ho, there is another person with money, hiding in the bush. Catch him”, sad the robbers. The money lending Chettiyar was caught and beaten unmercifully. He lost all his money.


He returned to his village the following morning, having learnt a bitter lesson by taking an ignorant shepherd as his companion.



Number Seven in Kalidasa and Kamba Ramayana! (Post No 3615)


Written by London swaminathan


Date: 7 FEBRUARY 2017


Time uploaded in London:- 18-51


Post No. 3615



Pictures are taken from different sources; thanks.






I have already explained the significance of Number 7 in my two articles as given in the Vedas, Indus valley Seals and verses of Vaishnavite saints known as Alvars. Please read the details in the following two articles:

1).Mystic No.7 in Music!! posted on 13th April 2014

2).Number Seven: Rig Vedic link to Indus Culture, posted on 21 November 2014


Now let us look at some verses of Kalidasa and Kamban. Kamban wrote the Ramayana in Tamil.


Kalidasa says in the Tenth sarga (Chapter) of Raghuvamsa Kavya; it is in praise of Lord Vishnu:-


सप्तसामोपगीतम् त्वाम् सप्तार्णवजलेशयम्।
सप्तार्चिमुखमाचख्युः सप्तलोकैकसम्श्रयम्॥ १०-२१

saptasāmopagītam tvām saptārṇavajaleśayam।
saptārcimukhamācakhyuḥ saptalokaikasamśrayam || 10-21


They have praised Thee who hast been glorified by seven hymns; a recliner on the waters of seven seas; having seven-flames for thy mouth and as a Being the only support of the seven worlds… [10-21]


The seven hymns: gAyatra, rathantara, vAmadevya, bR^ihatsAma, vairUpa, vairAja, shakvarI.


Seven seas: lavaNa, ikshu, surA, sarpis, dadhi, kshIra, jala – sAgarAH.


Seven tongues of fire: karAli, dhUmini, shveta, lohita, nIla-lohita,

suvarNa, padma-rAga – through which offertories are received in Vedic-rituals.

Seven worlds: bhU, bhuvar, suvar, maharloka, jana, tapo, satya – lokAH.


Valmiki’s Description of Seven Trees Test


Valmiki briefly describes how Rama pierced the Seven Trees:-


“Hearing Sugriva’s gracious speech, Rama, in order to inspire him with confidence, took up his bow and a formidable arrow, and taking him, pierced the Sala trees, filling the firmament with the sound”.

“Loosed by that mighty warrior, the arrow, decorated with gold, passed through the seven Sala trees and entering the mountain, buried itself in the earth. In the twinkling of an eye that shaft with the speed of lightening, having pierced the seven trees with extreme velocity, returned to Rama’s quiver”.

Chapter 12 of Kishkinda Kanda of Valmiki.

(I have already explained in another article that Hindus were the inventors of Boomerang. Krishna’s Sudarsana chakra and Rama’s arrows come back after hitting the target. They were scientifically designed to come back to its original position. They were angled like boomerangs of Australian aborigines.)


Kamba Ramayana in Tamil

Kamban has some beautiful imagination in Kishkinda Kanda. His imagination runs riot:-


“Rama’s arrow pierced the seven trees then went through the seven worlds underneath. Since there was nothing with the suffix number seven under the earth it came back to Rama. If it sees anything with SEVEN, it will definitely pierce them; it would not leave them”


“Seven seas, seven ascetics (Sapta Rsis), seven worlds above the earth, seven mountains, seven horses in the Chariot of Lord Sun, Seven Virgins (sapta mata) – all these were shivering and shaking because they all had seven as a suffix in their names!”


“But yet they calmed themselves saying that Rama is the embodiment of Righteousness; so he wouldn’t harm us.”


—from Kamba Ramayana


Hindus believed that Seven is the most sacred number. So they have classified the seas, mountains, upper worlds, lower worlds, ascetics, virgins, clouds and many more things into  groups of seven.

Source: Valmiki Ramayana by Hariprasad Shastri




Bhagavad Gita Simile used by Ancient Tamil Poets! (Post No.3514)

Research Article written by London swaminathan


Date: 4 January 2017


Time uploaded in London:-  20-56


Post No.3514



Pictures are taken from different sources; thanks.





If one studies the similes used by ancient Sanskrit poets and Tamil poets one will find out that Indians had a unique culture spreading over a vast landmass, that was the largest country in the world 2000 years ago. The simile used by Lord Krishna in Bhagavad Gita is found in the oldest Tamil book Tolkappiam and Sangam Tamil literature. Kalidasa and other Sanskrit poets also used the simile in umpteen places. This explodes the divisive Aryan- Dravidian Race Theory. Hundreds of similes are unique to Tamil and Sanskrit literature which are not found in any other literature or culture in the world.


Lord Krishna says (Sutra Manigana Iva) :

There is nothing whatsoever higher than Me, O Dhanjanjaya. All this strung in Me, as clusters of gems on a string 7-7


Commenting on this couplet Swami Chinmayananda says: “To show that the Self is one and the same in all forms, it has been said that the Lord is the common factor in all forms in the universe. He holds them all intact as the string holds all the pearls in a necklace. These words have deep significance. Not only is it beautiful in its poetic suggestion, but it has also a very exhaustive philosophical implication. The pearls in the necklace are necessarily uniform and homogenous, and its thread, which is generally unseen, passes through the central core of every pearl, and holds them all, the big and the small, into a harmonious ornament of beauty. Here is an instance wherein we see Shri Veda Vyasa typically expressing himself as the poet-philosopher of the world.


Tolkappaiam written by Tolkappiar, is considered the oldest book available in Tamil. It is dated around First Century BCE. Definitely later than Bhagavad Gita. We find the simile in Tolkappiam as well. Like Sanskrit, Sutra means a book and a thread in Tamil also; in Tamil the word used is Nuul= Thread or Book.


Tolkappiar used the word Sutra following Panini. He never hesitated to use a Sanskrit word. In the Sutra 1426:

Like orderly arranging the gems in a string, arranging the same types is called Othu.


Tamil Veda Tirukkural written by Tiruvalluvar also used the Bhagavad Gita simile:-

There is something that is implied in the beauty of this woman, like the thread that is visible in a garland of gems.


Thus Krishna’s “Sutra Manigana Iva” simile has become popular 2000 years ago. Avadhutopanishad also has this.

Kalidasa used this imagery in His Raghuvamsam and Vikrama Urvaseeyam:-

Though a dunce, I have a way in through the epic already rendered by Valmiki like the thread that easily goes through the diamonds already bored- (Raghuvamsa 1-4)


This King of Anga made the wives of his enemies to throw off their ornaments and weep for their husbands shedding tears larger than pearls on to their breasts which appeared like pearl necklaces. The king took the real necklace and gave them tear necklace- Raghu.6-28


A lady was halfway through her stringing of gems for her girdle. The thread was tied to her thumb. When she came to know about Aja’s visit she rushed to the window to see him. All the gems fell and scattered leaving only the thread still knotted to her thumb 7-10


These women engrossed at splashing water on each other are unable to give a thought to the severance and slithering of their pearl necklaces from their bosom, for the water drops as large as pearls are hopping on their bosoms which they think necklace of pearls – 16-62

These similes of Raghuvamsa were used by Tamil poets in Sangam literature.

Sangam Tamil poets used the similes in the following places:


Kudavayil Keerathanar has used this imagery twice in his poems in Akananuru (289 and 315)


Eyinanthai Ilankeeranar (Akam.225) used the broken pearl necklace image in his verse.


Kurunthokai Poets Kundriyanar and Kavan Mullai Poothanar and  Marudan Ilanagan of Marudakkali also followed his predecessors.   All of them used the unstringed or broken necklace images.


Thus, we see One Thought- One Culture from Kanyakumari to Kashmir. Before the foreigners came they didn’t know any divisions in the community such as Aryan or Dravidian races.




Kalidasa’s Famous Quotations


Indian Postal Stamps on Kalidasa’s works

Compiled by London swaminathan

Article No.1921; Dated 9 June 2015.

Uploaded at London time: 20-51

I give power and knowledge to him I love;

In invest him with Holy Power;

I make him a sage, a seer— Rig Veda 10-125-5

Kalidasa is one of the greatest poets of India. He is the most famous poet of ancient India. He has used over 1000 apt similes in his seven works. And there are quotations in his works which are used by the Sanskrit knowing general public in their every day conversations; his seven works are


1)Meghadutam (MES)

2)Rtusamharam (RTS)

3)Kumarasambhavam (KS)


4)Malavikagnimitram (MA)

5)Vikramorvasiyam (VU)

6)Abhijnana sakuntalam (AS)


7)Raghuvamsam (RV)

He is a dramatist, a writer of epic and a lyric poet of extraordinary scope. In his hands the language attained a remarkable flexibility, becoming an instrument capable sounding any moods and nuances of feeling – says Chandra Rajan in her book Kalidasa- The Loom of Time.

Here are twenty five of his quotations (source Suktisudha published by Chinmaya International Foundation):


Excess Affection

Deep affection often hits upon the specific remedy (VU)

Ati snehah khalu kaaryadarsi

Excessive affection suspects that evil will happen (to loved ones)

Ati snehah paapasanki (AS 4)

Authority / Power

The office of the government knows no rest (AS.5)

Avisramoyam lokatantraadhikaarah


Which heartless soul will sprinkle scalding water on the tender Navamallika creeper? (AS.4)

Ka idaaniimsnodakena Navamaalikaam sincati


Misfortune enters through a miniscule loophole in an uncompromising truth (AS.6)

Randhropanipaatinonarthaa iti yaducyate tadavyabhicaari



Hope makes bearable even the intense sorrow of separation (AS.4)

Gurvapi virahaduhkhamaasaabandhah saahayati


The senses toe the line of fate (VU3)

Bhavitavyataanuvidhaayin indriyaani


None has understood the real nature of Lord Siva (KS 5-77)

Na santi yathaarthyavidah pinaakinah

Nectar turns into poison, and poison into nectar, if the Lord so choses (RV 8-46)

Visamapyamrtam kvacid bhavedamrtam vaa visamiisvarecchayaa

Daughter/ unmarried girl

A daughter is another’s wealth (AS 4-22)

Artho hi kanyaa parakiiya eva

The daughter wedded to a virtuous groom will never be a source of grief to her father (KS 6-79)

The girl should be given to a virtuous man (AS 4)

Gunavate kanyakaa pratipaadaniiyaa

Action/ work/ deed

Will not he who undertakes a futile task become a butt of ridicule? (MES 1-54)

Ke vaa na syuh paribhavapadam nisphalaarambhayatnaah

Efforts, when directed towards a meaningful end, bear fruit (RV 3-29)

Kriyaa hi vastupahitaa prasiidati

A spirit tired by toil gets refreshed by reward (KS 5-86)

Klesah phalena hi punarnavataam vidhatte


Russian stamp to honour Kalidasa

Love/ desire

The desirous are self-centred (AS 2-2)

Kami svataam pasyati


Requests submitted to bosses by the proficient at the opportune time will surely be granted (KS 7-93)

Kaalaprayuktaa khalu kaarya vidbhir vijnaapanaa bhartrsu siddhimeti


What else can scorch better than fire? (AS 4)

Ko nyo hutavhaaddagdhum prabavati

Warrior caste

All the exertion of warriors is to safeguard dharma (RV 15-4)

Dharmasamraksanaayaiva pravrttirbhuvi saarnginah


Virtues are set foot everywhere (RV 3-62)

Padam hi sarvatra gunairnidhiiyate

The creator is averse to bringing together a totality of positives in a single soul – (KS 3-28)

Praayena saamagryavidhau gunaanaam paraanmukhi visvasrjah pravrttih

Guru /spiritual teacher

Question not the preceptor’s precepts (RV 14-46)

Aajnaa guruunaam hyavicaaraniiyaa



The numb at heart do not recognise virtue (AS 6-13)

Acetanam naama gunam na laksayet

Factual knowledge

Fie on the transience of the lives of men (RV 8-51)

Dhigimaam dehabhrtaamasaarataam


Place a wreath on a blind man’s brows and he tears it off, fearing it to be a snake (AS 7-24).

Humility of Indian poets! Varahamihira, Kalidasa, Kamban & Purandaradasa

Bend it like Modi ( More you bow, More you Grow)

Written by London swaminathan

Research Article No: 1831

Date: 27 April 2015; Uploaded in London at 17-29

Sanskrit and Tamil poets were great poets and yet they were very humble. We may find several examples in our literature that show their humility. Let us look at a few examples:


Varahamihira who authored two encyclopaedic works’ Brhat Jataka’ and ‘Brhat Samhita’ among others, says in the concluding chapter of Brhat Samhita,

Jyotih sasstrasamudram pramathya matimandaraadrinaatha mayaa

Lokasyaalokakarah saastrasasaangkah samuthksipthah

“Having churned the ocean of astrology with the Mandara mountain of my intelligence, I have taken out the moon of science that affords light to the world.

Then in the next verse he says,

“I have not discarded the works of ancient seers while writing this scientific work. Hence, O ye good men, you may by all means compare mine with theirs, and accept whichever you like

He continues,

“Good men, on finding some excellence, though slender, in an ocean of faults, proclaim it, while the mean minded do the contrary. This is the nature of the good and the wicked

Durjanahutaasataptam kaavyasuvarnam visuddhimaayaati

Sraavayitavyam tasmaaddusta janasya prayatnena


“The gold of poetry being heated by the fire of wicked men gets purified. Hence, it should be read to the wicked by all means”.


Kalidasa, the greatest of the Indian poets, in his Raguvamsa Kavya, says,

“The dynasty originated from Sun; with the meagre intellect of mine,  I am wishing to go across this unnavigable ocean called the solar dynasty by a small boat.

“Will I become the butt of ridicule if I were to covet the celebrity of an eminent poet, like a short fellow overstretching his arms for a fruit obtainable only by the tall, because I am still a dunce in this subject matter?

“But my course in depicting this dynasty might as well be easy through the gateway already crafted by the earlier poets, like a diamond bore holed by a diamond-edged tool for an easy passage of thread”.

In Malavikagnimitra, he says,

“Every old poem is not good simply because it is old; nor is a poem without charm, because it is new; sound critics favour the one or the other, after proper examination; while a blockhead is guided by another’s judgement”.


Greatest of the middle age Tamil poets Kamban in his Tamil Ramayana says in Balakanda,

“I wanted to write the story of Rama. My desire is like a cat licking the milky ocean (thinking it could drink the full ocean).

“Are you people wondering at my endeavour of writing the great story done by Valmiki– full of penance? He wrote the story of great Rama who pierced the seven strong trees with a single arrow which never miss the target like the curse of great people.

“I know the world will ridicule me; but my intention is to highlight the greatness of Valmiki who wrote flawless divine poetry”.


The famous Kannada saint and composer Purandaradasa says in one of his songs

“There ought to be traducers. Without them the glory of the virtuous would not gain celebrity. For example the paddy grain would be worthless without its slender thorn”.

Varahamihira  concludes by saying

“With my intellectual power blessed by the Divine Sun, the sages and my preceptor, as a result of my having made obeisance to their feet, I have only summarized this science. Hence I offer salutations to the ancient authors”.

Bowing Modi

“Gunaprakarso vinyaadavaapyate”

“All virtues are enhanced with humility” – Subhasita ratna bhandakaram 3-869

Octogenarian Manmohanji Namaskar!

Did Hala copy Kalidas in GSS?


Research Paper written by london swaminathan

Research article No 1561; Dated 9th January 2015.


Gatha Sapta Sati (GSS) is a Prakrit book of 700 erotic verses. It is dated  as a first century CE work. Satavahana king Hala compiled 700 good verses from the works of Prakrit poets. But in the present form it cant be a work of first century CE.  There is anachronism. There are lot of anonymous poems as well. Poets who are not popular or unknown to many of us have copied Kalidasa, the most famous poet of the classical age.


Even Hala who contributed 44 verses to GSS, has imitated Kalidas, at least in one of his poems where he describes an erotic scene. Lord Siva takes off the clothes of Uma. She immediately closed the eyes of Siva with her two hands to save her honour. Immediately Siva opened his third eye. Uma was so clever that she closed his third eye under the pretext of giving a kiss on the third eye.


Kalidasa, who lived in the first century BCE and served as the  Poet Laurate of Emperor Vikramaditya, described the scene in his Kumara sambhava even before Hala composed his verse:


“In private, with her garment taken off, she closed Siva’s two eyes with her two palms; but as his third eye on the forehead continued looking, she had her efforts foiled and became helpless” — sloka 7 of canto 8


Hala improved it by adding one more line by saying that she kissed on his third eye.


But this is not the only one that will decide the date of Kalidasa and Hala. There are many more things:


1.There is a mention of Tuesday in one of the verses. Days of the week appear very late in Indian litearture. Older poets never used the days of the week. In Tamil it appeared for the first time in the Tamil epic Silappadikaram. Madurai city was burnt down by Kannaki on a Friday. This reference and many other things in the epic made the scholars to doubt the date second century CE given to the epic. Later Thevaram hymn of Sambandhar listed all the seven days from Sunday to Saturday. Though the epic story happened in second century CE, it was put in present form in fifth to seventh century. If we apply the same principle to GSS, it will be dated to fifth to seventh century.


2.Mention of Lord Ganesh in one of the verses also take GSS to a later age. Older poets like Kalidasa never mentioned Lord Ganapathy. Statues of Ganesh came to the South only after fifth century CE.


3.Hora is a word used in GSS and the oldest Tamil book Tolkappiam. Prof. Vaiyapuri Pillay argued that this word is of Greek origin and so Tolkappiam in its present form must be placed after Greek contact in the South. If we apply the same rule GSS may be later than first century.

  1. Vikramaditya’s distribution of gold coins to his soldiers is mentioned in one of the GSS verses. Kalidasa was the court poet of Emperor Vikramaditya.

uma siva

5.Hala was said to have married Leelavathy, daughter of Sri Lankan King Seelamegha. Seelamega ruled between 200 and 600 CE according to V V Mirashi. This means that we have to look for more than one Halan!


6.There are 14 commentaries on GSS; but there are  seven different versions of GSS. Out of the 700 verses, only 430 are common to all. The total number of verses from the seven editions are 1066. So this is not reliable (Source: Mr Patwardhans translation of GSS).


7.One of the famous similes of Kalidasa is Deepa sikha. This was copied by GSS and other Sanskrit poets. It is found even in Maduraikanchi, part of Tamil Sangam literature. Had Kalidasa copied this simile and the above Uma-Siva episode, the ancient poets would not have praised him the Kavikulaguru.Kalidasa would not have become the greatst of the Indian poets. Tamil litearture has more than 200 similes of Kalidasa

8.But there are lot of similarities to prove that the main authors of GSS

lived at the age of Sangam litearture, i.e the first few centuries of CE.


9.The big difference between the Tamil love poems and GSS erotic poems is that the description of bad family women. Though Tamil literature has lot of references to courtesans, there was no immoral family women. But GSS depicts such women having pre marital and post (extra) marital sex with strangers.

10.Some poets of GSS such as Paliyathan ( also of Puram 387), Brhmachari (also of Natrinai 34) are found in Sangam Tamil literature as well. There may be others such as Kayamanar (Gajan in GSS) and  Ulochanar (Trilocana in GSS). Paliathan of Gundukat (Gundakkal) was a good friend of Hala. Satavahanas were good friends of Cheran Senguttuva, one of the great Sera kings of Tamil Nadu. Paliyathan sang about Selvakatungo Vaziyatha, a Sera king. All these prove that Hala and Paliathan were contemporaries of Cheran Chenguttuvan and his immediate follwers. But lot of new verses were interpolated in GSS at a later age.


  1. One GSS poest addresses the cloud, an imitation of Kalidasa’s Megaduta kavya.


12.There are many poets with Naga suffix in both Sangam and GSS.

radha unjal

13.Though Sangam Tamil literature mentioned Gopis and Krishna on rthe banks of Yamuna (Thozunai in Tamil), GSS mentioned Radha with Krishna in several places. So it must be of a later age.

Interesting Names of Raja, Deva, Swami, Sena


Name search gives much interesing information to researchers.


At least 28 poets with RAJA suffix such as Raviraja, Rathiraja, Maharaja, Ahoraraja, Anuraja, Andhraraja etc.


At least 8 names with SWAMI suffix: Govindswami, Chandraswami, Meenaswami, Satyaswami etc.


Five have SEELA, five have SIMHA, six poets have DEVA suffix


At least 8 names with SENA suffix: Pravarasena, Satyasena, Mallasena, Makarandasena.


The interesting thing about SENA is that it is a suffix for kings. Sangam Tamil literature project several kings as poets. In the same way, many of the Andhra kings or commanders of army might have composed poems. Moreover I have written elsewhere that several Sumerian kings have this Sena suffix as SIN. Sin also mean moon (Chandra) in Sumerian. Eitherway it is typical Hindu to have Sena or Chandra as suffix in names (Eg.Mahabharata has 24 kings with Sena suffix. Also we have Hari Chandra, Udaya Chandra, Chandramati as royal names).


Last but not the least is the number of poetesses. Sangam Tamil Literature and world’s oldest literature the Rig Veda can boast of at least 20 poetesses each. But GSS has approximately 12 women poets:

Andhralakshmi, Sarasvati, Sasiprabha, Girisudha, Reka, Reva, Gramakuddika, Chadraputtika, Revathy, Gunamukta, Tharangamathy,Jakkurangy


Strangley GSS did not mention Ganga, Himalaya and Lord Skanda. Both Kalidasa and Sangam Literature have lot of references to them. There is lot of scope for reaserch by comparing GSS with Tamil literature.


16 Virtues of Great Kings


Dasaratha in painting

Research paper written by London Swaminathan

Research article No.1517; Dated  25  December 2014.

Kalidasa, the greatest Indian poet of classical age, begins his Raghuvamsa, with bombastic words in Sanskrit. But he was so humble that he compared himself to a dwarf trying to reach fruits on a tall tree with his tiny arms.

But in the very next verse he said that he can do it because the old poets had already pierced the diamond through their verses. Now his job is like sending a thread through that hole.

But those who knew Sanskrit felt that he excelled all other poets in the choice of words as well as the description of sixteen great virtues of the Raghukula, the clan of Lord Rama (Rama’s forefather was Raghu).

This is not only for those who look for literary gems but also for those who want to study what Hinduism stood for.


1.Pure from their birth- Aajanma Sudhhaanaam

The kings were pure from their birth. No bad name for the family, all their forefathers were embodiments of great virtues

2.Who till they won success worked on – Aafalodaya karmaanaam

They worked very hard till they won the task.

Perseverance was one of their virtues, never stopped in the middle.

They tried like Bhageeratha, who brought Ganges from the heaven ( actually he was a great engineer and planned to divert Ganges towards Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Bengal for irrigation. With great and long effort  he succeeded in the Himalayan engineering work)

3.Ruled Earth to the Sea – Aasamudra Kshithisaanaam

They did not rule small areas. From shore to shore they ruled. Kalidasa , who lived in the first century BCE, during the reign of Vikramaditya, knew what he was talking about. He routed all the foreign forces and drove them out of the vast Indian sub continent.


4.Their Car track reached to heaven —  Aanaaka ratha varthmanaam

Their chariots had direct route to heaven; that meant they were so pure they go to heaven when the leave their bodies at will.

5.The altar fire they tended – Yathaavidhi Huthaagniinaam

They were very pious and did great Yagnas like Asvamedha, Rajasuya etc.

6.Suppliants all Most fully satisfied – Archithaarthinaam

All were satisfied; their needs were met.

7.Ill deeds they punished – Yathaaparaatha Dandaanaam

They punished according to the gravity of the crimes; neither too much nor too less.


8.Nor were slothful in their rule –Yathaakaala Prabhodhinaam

They were never lazy.

9.Wealth they amassed to scatter – Thyaagaaya sambruthaarthaanaam

They accumulated wealth only to give it back to the poor

10.Sparing words they never spoke falsely- Sathyaaya Mithbahaasinaam

They spoke a few words fearing that they may tell something wrong by the slip of the tongue.


11.Fame in war they sought- not gain – Yasasee Vijigishuunaam

They fought wars indeed, but all Dharma Yuddha, not for the booty, but for fame. This is a great concept seen nowhere in the world. Sangam Tamil literature and Sanskrit literature were crystal clear that innocents should not suffer during wars. All the old people, invalids, women, Brahmins, sick people, children were asked to vacate the place and the wars were fought outside the town.

When the king was killed or defeated they accepted the verdict. But after the foreign invasions, the picture changed completely. Since they did all the illegal and immoral things, Hindu rulers also fell in that grew.

12.Wedded  for noble seed – Prajaayai Gruhamedhinaam

They married and led a family life not for sexual pleasure, but for progeny.

13.Their children studied—Saisave abhyasthavidhyaanaam

They studied all through their life from childhood. They were lifelong students. They updated their knowledge now and then.


  1. Youth pursued its decent pleasures – Yauvane Vishayaishinaam

They followed only decent pleasures even when they were young.

15.And in ripe old age they lived as ascetics – Vardhakee Munivriththinaam

They lead ascetic life when they became old

16.Relinquished their bodies in meditation- Ante Yogena Thanuthyajaam

They did not die without any purpose. They left the body at will meditating upon God like the great Bhishma Pitamaha.


Women and Rivers in Kalidasa and Tamil literature


Research paper written by London Swaminathan
Research article No.1403; Dated 10th November 2014

I have listed over 200 similarities between Kalidasa’s works and Sangam Tamil literature. I have argued in my previous posts on Kalidasa that he lived in the first century BCE or before that. Most of the Indian scholars believe that he lived during the rule of Vikramaditya of first century BCE. Amazing similarities between the Tamil poems and Kalidasa’s confirm that the Sangam Tamils were very familiar with his works. This is confirmed by the Brahmin poet Kabila’s work in the Sangam period. He taught Tamil poetics to an Aryan king Bruhat Datta ( through Sanskrit) and made him write a Tamil poem which is included in the Sangam corpus. Kabila was a trend setter. He used many Sanskrit words and Sanskrit themes in Sangam verses. He copied Kalidasa in his Kurinjipattu which was noticed by an ardent Tamil lover Rev. Dr G U Pope 150 years ago.

I present below some similes where Kalidasa’s influence is noticeable.
Rivers in India are considered women and sea as their (lover) husband. Women’s beauty is compared to the beauty of cities. Though it may look strange today ancient people used this simile. If I compare a beautiful actress to the beauty of a big city today, people will laugh at me. But it is in the Bible as well.
Sangam poets Nakkirar, Paranar , Kabilar, Mamular, Orampoki and Ammuvan compared the beauty of a woman to a city/town.
Women and city are compared in literature!

Tamil Ref. Natrinai 367, 258, 260, 340, 350, 358, 395; Ainkurunuru 56, 171
Poet Nakkirar compares the beauty of a woman to Aruman’s small and beautiful village (Natrinai 367). And in another poem (358), he compares the beauty of a woman to Pandya’s town Marungai. Poet Orampokiar compared a woman’s beauty to Choza town Amur (Aink.56). Another woman was compared to Pandya’s port city Tondi by Ammuvan (Aink.171).

20120222 Water change near Ballina

Kalidasa used this simile in Raghuvamsam :

Mithila is compared to a woman. Like a woman tolerates all that is done to her (by her husband) out of love, Mithila tolerated the army of Dasaratha -11-52,
City of Ayodhya with its smoke from sandal is compared to women with their hair drying in the fragrant smoke– 14-12

Akasath Patitam Toyam Yatha Gachchati sagaram ………

Hindus are very familiar with the rivers and the seas. Great seers Bhrgu, Agastya and Kaundinya took the Hindu culture and civilization to different parts of the world via sea route.
So they always use this comparison:
“Even as all the waters (rivers) falling from the sky invariably flow into the sea, so ………. (all prayers offered go to God)”.
This is found in Kalidasa and Tamil literature. This shows that Indians from Kashmir to Kanyakumari thought in the same way. This simile is unique to Indian literature.
Tamil references: Puram 42, Malaipatukadam 51/53; Perumpanatrupatai line 427, Purpporul Venpa 11, Kamba Ramayana Kaiyatai ppatalam 15
pen painting

Kalidasa :
“Fortunately, you have set your heart on one truly worthy of you. But then where else would a great river flow except to the ocean? (Saku 3-13)

The daughters of the Kings of Maghada, Kosala and Kekaya obtained a husband (Dasaratha) for them who is a mighty warrior, just as the rivers, daughters of mountains, obtain the mighty ocean (as their husband) (Raghu 9-17)

Just as the bride loved the bridegroom worthy of her, so too did he love her for the Ganges did not leave the ocean, and the ocean too finds the greatest delight in tasting (the nectar of) her mouth (Kumara 8-16)

Beauty of the city is compared to woman

Sangam Tamil poet Nalvellaiyar compared the amorous thoughts to the flooded Ganges River in Natrinai 369. In can’t be a rare co incidence for a Tamil poet to compare the floods in Ganges to a woman’s feelings in the southern most part of India. They are well versed in Kalidasa. Otherwise the common men would not understand or appreciate this simile!

Tamil Poet Idaikatan of Puram verse 42 compares the rivers that eagerly flow into the sea to poets that come towards the Choza king Killivalavan.

Uruthirankannan, author of Perumpanatruppatai, says that like the rivers take all the things to the sea, kings come to you with their tributes (line 427)
Raghu.12-35,13-9, 13-58, 13-62,15-60 more references

Rivers go to seas, men go to kings or gods.

My earlier posts on Kalidasa
1.Did Kalidasa fly an Airplane? 12 Sept. 2014
2.Sea in Kalidasa and Tamil Literature
3.Ganges in Kalidasa and Sangam Tamil Works
4.Gem Stones in Kalidasa and Tamil Literature
5. Bird Migration in Kalidasa and Tamil Literature
6.Kalidasa’s Age:Tamil Works confirm 1st Century BC
7.Above articles in Tamil


Veera Matha–‘Mother of Heroes’ in the Vedas and Tamil literature

Greatest of the Hindu Heroines Rani Padmini of Chittoor. When lustful Alauddin Khilgi wanted to take her she entered fire with hundreds of women to save her honour in 1303 AD.

Veera Matha–‘Mother of Heroes’ in the Vedas and Tamil literature

Rig Veda, the oldest religious book in the world, and the 2000 year old Sangam Tamil books praise Hindu women as mother of heroes- Veera Matha. They agree on one more point. They say that those who die in the battle field will go to heaven. Bhagavad Gita and Purananuru are very clear about it. Women are blessed with Vedic mantras to give birth to heroes. Lalitha Sahasranama praises Goddess Sakthi as Veera matha. Tamil poet Bharathi goes one step further and says this country will call a woman Maladi (infertile woman) only if she doesn’t give birth to heroes. This is a novel concept.

They were all forerunners to Swami Vivekananda who thundered that Fear and Cowardice are to be shunned most. He always advocated youths to go forward by quoting the Upanishad mantra, “Uhthishta, Jagratha, Prapyavaran Nibodhatha”-Arise, Awake, Stop not till the goal is reached!

Poet Kalidasa says in Kumara sambhava (Canto VII-87):

“The bride was greeted by the Creator with the words: “Blessed one, be you the mother of a Hero” (In Sanskrit : Veeraprasavaa Bavethi).

A Tamil poet puts it beautifully in a verse in Purananuru:

What a Hero’s Mother (Veera Thay in Tamil) said:

“ You stand against the pillar

Of my hut and ask me:

Where is your son?

I don’t really know.

My womb is only a lair

For that tiger.

You can see him now

Only in the battlefields” —(Purananuru Verse 86 by Kavarpendu)

(Purananauru is part of Sangam Tamil Literature. It is an anthology of 400 poems).

There a hymn in the Rig Veda praising Veera Matha:

Rig Veda: Tenth Mandala ,Hymn 86


So may Prajapati bring children forth to us; may Aryaman adorn us till old age come nigh.

Not inauspicious enter thou thy husband’s house. Bring blessings to our bipeds and quadrupeds.


Not evil eyed, no slayer of thy husband, bring weal to cattle, radiant, gentle hearted;

Loving the gods, delightful, bearing heroes, bring blessing to our quadrupeds and bipeds

Heroes go to Heaven

Krishna in Bhagavad Gita (II-37) says:

“Either slain thou shalt go to Heaven; or victorious thou shalt enjoy the earth; therefore arise, O son of Kunti, resolved on battle.

Puram verses 26, 62, 93, 287, 341, 362;PathiRRu Pathu 52 give the same message to the heroes. There are more Tamil verses where in the poets talk about kings reaching heaven after dying. There are even special funeral ceremonies conducted by Brahmins for the kings who die elsewhere. If the kings die due to natural causes Brahmins spread the dharba grass under the king’s body and cut them into pieces by saying ‘let you go to heaven where the heroes go’. Avvaiyar describes this ceremony in a praise to Athiyaman Anji (Pura Nanuru verse 93): you escaped from this ceremony because you are a hero wounded in the battle field.

All these are echoes of Kalidasa who lived a few centuries before the Sangam poets. Kalidasa sings about wounds that happened in the battle fields throughout his works. In Raghuvamasam 14-4 he says Kausalya and Sumitra were fond of the word ‘Veeramatha’. But having seen the wounds inflicted by the Rakshasas on young Rama and Lakshmana , their mothers Kausalya and Sumithra did not want to hear that sound of Veera matha.

Pictre: Rani Lakshmibhai of Jhansi was killed by the British

Slogans on the Flags

“The kings of Surya Vamsa (solar race) Raghu and Ajan took all your name and fame, but not your lives– were written with blood on the flags with arrow heads”. That is, out of mercy, Raghu and Aja let you all run alive. The interesting message Kalidasa gives in this sloka (Raghu.7-65) is that devoted workers of politicians (Kings) wrote slogans like this 2000 years ago!

So political workers writing with their blood for their leaders is nothing new!

Ascetics bless Sakuntala Veera Prasavini Bhava (Be a mother of heroes)”.

In Sakuntala 7-28,  Sakuntala was blessed by the elders:

“ With a husband the equal of The Breaker of Dark Clouds (Indra)

With a son like his son, Jayanta, no other blessing fits you but this;

Ravana was equal to Rama

Rama was so happy to meet a great hero like Ravana in the battle field, says Kalidasa in Raghu 12-89. Heroes never favour unequal fights.

Like Tamil poets Kalidasa used words like battle wounds on the chest (not on the back), wounds or injuries due to arrow and bow in the hands in several places (Raghu III-68, II-64,  18-48, 16-84, VII-65, 12-89, 13-73, 16-1).

In the Asvameda Yagna (Horse Sacrifice), Kshatriya women(Kings’ wives) have to cut the horse into pieces.

Picture of Kittoor Rani Chennamma


1.பாரதி பாடல் Bharathi Poems:

“வீரரைப் பெறாத மேன்மைதீர் மங்கையை

ஊரவர் மலடி என்று உரைத்திடு நாடு”—பாரதி


2.புறம் 86 (காவற்பெண்டு)

சிற்றில் நற்றூண் பற்றி, ‘நின் மகன்

யாண்டுள்ளனோ? என வினவுதி; என் மகன்

யாண்டு உளன் ஆயினும் அறியேன்;ஓரும்

புலி சேர்ந்து போகிய கல் அளை போல

ஈன்ற வயிறோ இதுவே;

தோன்றுவன் மாதோ, போர்க்களத்தானே!


3.Lalitha Sahsranama லலிதா சஹஸ்ரநாமா

Praneswari pranadatri panjasatpeedarupini

Visrungala vivikthasdha veeramatha viyathprasuhu:

ப்ராணேச்வரி ப்ராணதாத்ரீ பஞ்சாசத்பீடரூபினி

விஸ்ருங்கலா விவிக்தஸ்தா வீரமாதா வியத்ப்ரஸூ:


Hindu Goddess’ march to Denmark !

Picture shows Gundestrup cauldron with Gajalakshmi

(This is the fifth part in my thesis to prove that Kalidasa lived before Sangam Tamil period. Kalidasa’s date was around 1st century BC. Tamil poets have used a lot from his 1000+ similes in various places. For some of these we may find a common source. But a lot of similes and idioms and phrases show beyond any shadow of doubt that they knew Kalidasa’s works and they deliberately used them in Sangam Tamil poems. Art Historian Sri C Sivaramamurti and others used different methods to arrive at the same date of first century BC. Sivaramamurti showed how Junagadh Rudradaman inscription of second century AD had echoed Kalidasa’s poems)

Lakshmi is praised by various Tamil and Sanskrit poets from Vedic days. They used the words THIRU (Tamil) and SRI (in Sanskrit) to mean wealth as well as Goddess Laksmi. Goddess Lakshmi is in charge of wealth. There are innumerable references to the goddess in Tamil and Sanskrit works. But the interesting form of Lakshmi  is GAJA LAKSHMI(Gaja in Sanskrit means elephant). Goddess Lakshmi seated on a lotus flower and two elephants on either side pouring water on her is known as Gaja Lakshmi. This particular aspect of Lakshmi is considered very auspicious. In India, particularly in Chettinadu of Tamil Nadu, palatial houses have Teak doors with the wooden figures of Gajalakshmi till this day.

Gajalakshmi’s figures have travelled from the Himalayas to the southern most part of Sri Lanka. It is in the form of old coins, lamps, wooden figures, idols and stone sculptures. It has travelled from India to Denmark !! We have Gajalakshmi figure carved in to Gundestrup silver Cauldron. Now it is in Copenhagen. When they dug up a marshy area in Jutland , Denmark in 1891 they recovered a big silver vessel which is dated to second century BC. A very interesting fact about this vessel is that there is a god surrounded by animals like we see in the Indus valley seal (For more details please read my article Vishnu in Indus Valley Seal)

The earliest reference to Gajalakshmi is in Sri Suktam of the Vedas:

“Laksmir –divyair-gajendrair-manigana-kasithai: snabitha hemakumbhair nithyam sa pathma hastha”

(Holding a lotus in hand she is bathed by water from the gem studded golden pot by the celestial elephants)

Later Valmiki, Kalidasa and Sangam Tamil poets described the goddess in detail. We get lot of materials with the figure in coins, sculptures, idols etc. from second century BC onwards .The Bharhut sculptures show a beautiful Gajalakshmi which is in Kolkatta museum at present.  Ellora, Mahabalipuram cave temples also have got these sculptures.

Gajalakshmi coins are in plenty belonging to different dynasties of different periods. The oldest coin was issued by an Indo Greek king Azilises of North West India in first century BC. Later kings of Kosambi and Mathura Bijaasata Mitra and Visaka Deva respectively issued coins with Gajlakshmi. In Sri Lanka we find Gajalakshmi on the coins of 1st century AD. The coins were recovered from Anuradhapuram,Kantharodai , Manthottam in Sri Lanka and Karur of Tamil Nadu..

Buddhists and Jains “worshipped”

Not only Hindus but also the Jains and Buddhists respected or probably worshipped Gajalakshmi. The Buddhist kings of Sri Lanka issued such coins. Bharhut sculpture of Gakjalakshmi is another proof for it. Jain Tirthankar Mahavir’s mother Trishala had a dream of 14 auspicious signs before the birth of Mahavir. The fourth dream was of Gajalakshmi.

Michael Michener read a paper at a seminar in British Museum, London where he listed all the old kings who issued coins of Gajalakshmi. The list includes coins of Indo Greek king Azilesas, Mathura King Raju vula , Andhra King Shrive Satakarni(1st century) ,Jayanagar (8th century AD) and Nayak Kings of Tamil Nadu.

In the 2000 year old Sangam literature, we have references in the books:

Nedunal vaatai .88-89 and Kalitokai 44-8.

Madurai Kanchi of Mankudi Maruthan 353

Kapilar being a Brahmin well versed in Sanskrit used lot of Kalidasa’s similes and expressions. In Kalitokai, Kurinji Kali 44-8 he described Gajalakshmi.

Another Brahimn poet Nakkirar, who would have read all Kalidasa in Sanskrit used a lot of Kalidasa’s works on Muruga (Lord Skanda) in his Tirumurukatruppatai and Lakshmi in Nedunalvatai.

“Have massive door posts daubed with ghee and white mustard

And held by a stout lintel named after Uttara star,

Where on are carved the figures of Goddess Lakshmi,

With the elephants holding water lilies on either side

And fitted with double doors, iron clamped….. (Nedu88-89)

(Nachinarkiniyar interpreted these lines as Gajalakshmi. English translation is based on his commentary. Arthasastra also advised kings to install such figures in the fort doors)

In Sivaka Sinthamani (2595), we see the same picture.

In Kalidasa we have references to Gajalakshmi in the books:

Raghuvamsa 12-93: Kalidasa was describing the battle between Rama and Ravana with beautiful similes in every sloka/couplet. The commentators struggled to comment on this sloka because they did not know what he was using as simile. They guessed that a wooden plank with wheels was used when two elephants clashed in the battle field. But anyone who reads it can easily see he used Jayalakshmi (goddess of victory) in between two elephants to mean Galjalakshmi .

In Meghadutam 79, Kalidasa described the lotus and conch (Sangha Nidhi and Padhma Nidhi) pictures drawn on the doors. They are considered two of the nine treasures of Kubera. Saivite saint Appar also mentioned these treasures of Kubera in his Thevaram hymns.

Arthasastram of Kautilya (second century BC) listed several gods and goddesses to be installed in the forts and Gajalakshmi was one of them

Tamil References:

குறிஞ்சிக் கலி

வரிநுதல் எழில் வேழம் பூநீர் மேல் சொரிதரப்,

புரிநெகிழ் தாமரை மலரங்கண் வீறு எய்தித்,

திரு நயந்து இருந்தன்ன தேங்கமழ் விறல் வெற்ப! (கலி.44-8-5/7)

மதுரைக் காஞ்சி

விண் உற ஓங்கிய பல் படைப் புரிசை

தொல் வலி நிலை இய அணங்குடை நெடி நிலை(352-353)


ஐயவி அப்பிய நெய் அணி நெடு நிலை

வென்று எழு கொடியொடு வேழம் சென்று புக

குன்று குயின்றன்ன ஓங்கு நிலை வாயில்

திருநிலை பெற்ற தீது தீர் சிறப்பின் (86-89)

அப்பர் தேவாரம்

சங்க நிதி பதும நிதி இரண்டும் தந்து

தரணியொடு வானாளத் தருவரேனும்

மங்குவார் அவர் செல்வம் மதிப்போம் அல்லோம்

மாதேவர்க்கு ஏகாந்தர் அல்லார் ஆகில் (அப்பர் 6-346)


  1. The Gundestrup Cauldron by Timothy Tailor-Scientific American, March 1992
  2. Ancient coins of India by A. Cunningham (pages 74,86,92 and 100)
  3. Foreign influence on Ancient Sri Lankan Coinage by Jayasinghe-1997
  4. Lakshmi bathed by elephants on ancient Indian coins by Michael Michener-seminar in British Museum-2-12-2000