In ancient times, there was a very famous monastery in the northern part of this country which was known as Kalinger. Kalinger Monastery was a famous monastery of that time. This is before the Ramayana period. Before the arrival of Ram, there was a lot of name for the Kalinger Math. Ram was considered as a very just and welfare king. He used to sit in the court every day and try to solve the problems of the people.
One day in the evening, when the day was over, they had to deal with the court proceedings. When he had heard the problems of all the people, he asked his brother Lakshman, who was his ultimate devotee, to go out and see that no one else is waiting. Lakshman went out and looked around and came back and said, ‘There is no one. Our work of today is over now. ‘Ram said,’ Go and look, someone can be. So Lakshman went again and looked around, there was no one there.
He was about to come in but he saw a dog who was sitting there with sad face and had an injury on his head. Then he asked the dog, ‘Are you waiting for something?’ The dog began to say, ‘Yes, I want justice from Rama.’ Then Lakshman said, ‘You come inside’. The dog came and bowed to Ram and started speaking. He said, ‘Hey Ram, I want justice. I have been subjected to unspeakable violence. I was sitting quietly, this person with the name of the Sarvathasidh came and hit me with a stick on my head for no reason. Ram immediately summoned the Sarvathasidh, who was a beggar. He was brought to the court. Ram asked, ‘what is your story? This dog says that you struck him without reason. He said ‘ Yes, I am the culprit of this dog. I was frustrated with hunger, I was angry, disappointed. This dog was sitting in my way, so I hit him unnecessarily on the head in despair and anger. You can give me any punishment.
Then Rama asked his ministers and courtiers, ‘What punishment do you want for this beggar?’ All of them thought about this and said, ‘Wait a minute, this is a very trickier matter. Firstly, a person and a dog are included, so the laws that we commonly know, will not apply to it. Therefore, being a king, it is your right to tell you the decision. ‘Then Rama asked the dog, ‘What do you say, do you have any suggestions?’ The dog said, ‘Yes, I have a suitable sentence for this person. Make it the chief mahant of the Kalinger monastery.” Rama agreed and the beggar was made the chief mahant of the famous Kalinger Math. Rama gave him an elephant, the beggar got very pleased with this punishment and climbed the elephant and happily went to the Math.
The courtiers said, ‘What is this decision? Is this a punishment? The man is very happy. ‘Then the Ram asked the dog the reason behind it. ‘The dog said,’ In ancient times, I was the Chief Mahant of the Kalinger monastery and I went there because I had my spiritual well-being and was devoted to the Monastery with a sincere heart. I went there with the determination of myself and everyone’s spiritual welfare.
But as the days passed, gradually other sporadic views started to affect me. Names and fame that come with the title of Chief Mahant, started influencing me somewhere. People started watching me like a priest. Within myself, I knew that I am not a religious leader but I started behaving like a religious leader and started demanding facilities which should be generally received from a religious leader. Such things happened and gradually my commitment to spiritual welfare began to decrease and the people around me started decreasing. Many times I tried to bring myself back, but seeing the near acceptance around me, I lost myself somewhere. This beggar is angry at all times and he is also frustrated, so I know that he will also punish himself as I did. Therefore, this is the best punishment for him, let him become the Chief Mahant of the Kalinger monastery.