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Story Of Kalaka And Dharmadatta – The Great Result Of Charity Performed Without Expectation

In Kali Yuga people perform charity to have names and photos published online and newspapers. Such charity has no value as its intentions are not Dharmic. But charity performed without any expectation or results earn great merits. The story of Kala and pious person named Dharmadatta points to this fact.

Kalaka was an evil life in her previous birth and she committed suicide by consuming poison.

The messengers of Lord Yama, the god of death, came to take Kalaka away. They took her to Lord Yama. Lord Yama asked Chitragupta, the record keeper and the god of judgement, about the details of Kalaka’s life. Chitragupta told the details of Kalaka’s life and said: ‘She is bound to roam as a ghost for a long time.’

Kalaka was wandering on earth here and there as ghost and suffering greatly.

One day she met Dharmadatta who was going to temple to perform the Ekadashi fasting in Kartik month. Dharmadatta was carrying tulsi leaves and water to the temple. The pious Dharmadatta was in the habit of fasting on all Ekadashis.

Kalaka decided to attack Dharmadatta but when she ran towards him,  he sprinkled Tulsi leaves and water on her.

Kalaka remembered her previous lifetimes and said to Dharmadatta: ‘Sir! Please save me by your grace from the lowly births I would have to take because of my evil actions. I surrender to your holy feet.’ Saying these words, Kalaka fell at Dharmadatta’s feet.

Dharmadatta pondered. He felt compassion for Kalaka. He thought: ‘It is impossible to save her through ordinary virtuous acts. Hence, the best way is to give half of the effect of the fasts I have observed in the Kartik month.’

Dharmadatta made Kalaka sit and taught her the eleven-lettered mantra of Lord Vishnu: ‘Namo bhagavate vasudevaya; salutations to Lord Vishnu.’ He poured tulsi water over Kalaka.

Then, he gave her half of the merits he had earned just as he had planned. Kalaka was freed of her evil tendencies. She started radiating a brilliance surpassing the beauty of celestial nymphs like Urvashi.

Then landed an airplane from the sky. From that alighted two persons named Punyasheela and Susheela. They were both the servants of God. Surprised at their sight, Dharmadatta prostrated at their feet. The God’s servants embraced Dharmadatta and saluted him.

The God’s servants told Dharmadatta: ‘Sir! You are quite fortunate. You have performed a great charity by great compassion. This woman has been freed of all her sins because of your mercy. She will live in the abode of Vishnu in this lifetime. And your merits will double because of that. Hence, you, along with your two wives, will also go to the abode of Vishnu.

In your next lifetime, you would be born as King Dasharatha. Both your wives would be your wives in that lifetime too. This woman, who has received half of your merits, would also become your wife by the name Kaikeyi.

In that lifetime, you would have Lord Vishnu as your son. You will again attain heaven after that lifetime.