Introduction

“Uttanka’s Gurudakshina” revolves around a young boy named Uttanka, who after learning all that his master could teach him felt indebted because he never repaid even once. In olden days there was practice of paying gurudakshina after learning from one’s guru. So, Uttanka felt indebted.

One day he goes to asks his master what should he offer as a gesture in the form of a gift which could please him to which the master said that there is nothing which he needs and he directed him to ask his wife if she desired anything. The guru’s wife expressed her desire for the queen’s earrings on being asked. Although Uttanka was taken a back for a moment,he set out through the forest to the city, where he knew the king dwelt.

The Journey

On his way through the forest, he met a man riding a huge bull. The man offered Uttanka a cup full of some liquid and urged him to drink it saying that it will help him on his way. Uttanka arrived at the king’s palace and went directly to the king and told him about his Guru’s wife’s wish to which the king asked him to visit the queen. The queen willingly gave him the earrings but warned him that the jewels were also coveted by the serpent king. Uttanka was filled with joy and began his journey back to home.

That evening, he leaned against a tree for some rest and placed the earrings beside him. Suddenly, a man dressed in rags snatched the rings and ran into the forest. Uttanka ran after him but the man changed into a snake and wriggled into a hole in the ground. Uttanka was distressed, and could not figure how he could get inside the hole.

At that time an old man appeared and assured him of his help.Even as he spoke,there was thunder and lightning and a great thunderbolt fell.The whole earth shook with the force of it.Uttanka saw a big hole near him.

The Serpent’s Kingdom

He went inside the hole, to the serpent’s kingdom. There he saw a man on a horse and bowed respectfully to him and asked him to grant him a favor, which would put the serpent king in Uttanka’s power. The man asked Uttanka to blow into his horse. When Uttanka blew into the horse, flames shot from every hair of the horses’s body and burnt the houses of the serpents. Uttanka told them that if the serpent king returned the earrings, he would save them. The serpents then urged their king to return the Jewels.

Return to the Hermitage

Later Uttanka returned to the hermitage, just in time to give the earnings to his guru’s wife. She was happy and blessed him for his courage. When Uttanka told his guru about his adventure, his master told him that the liquid, which he drank was ambrosia, which would give him eternal youth.

The man who gave it was the God of rain and the horse was the god of fire. He blessed his student and sent him out into the world to make a living for great fortune awaited him. Thus, Uttanka, having fulfilled his duties, went into the world to seek his living.He had nothing to fear for he knew that God protected him.