Sant Raghu Dasa, Ardent devotee of Puri Jagannath

There was once a great devotee of Lord Rama, and his name was Raghu Dasa. He lived in Puri near the Jagannath temple. Once when he went inside the Puri Jagannath Temple, he saw Lord Jagannath in the form of Lord Rama, Laxman, and Sita. From that day onwards, he began to strongly believe that his beloved deity Lord Rama is none other than Lord Jagannath, and thereafter, Raghu became a sincere devotee of Lord Jagannath.

Once Raghu prepared a beautiful garland for Lord Jagannath and he had given it to the priest, and asked him to offer it to the Lord. But the priest didn’t offer it to the Lord, since he considers Raghu’s garland was filled up with only simple flowers. The priest prepared a beautiful garland made out of fragrant flowers, and offered it to the Lord.But to his surprise, the Lord didn’t accept his flower garlands, and the garland began to fell from the idol. The priest tried to adorn the garland for several times, but the Lord didn’t accept his garland. Then that day night, Lord Jagannath appeared in the dream of the priest, and asked him to adorn the garland of Raghu Dasa to him.

The priest realised his mistake, and the next day morning, he went to the house of Raghu Dasa, asked apology to him, and willfully accepted his garland and adorned it to Lord Jagannath. Then the Lord took his true form, smiled at all the devotees present in the temple, and especially he made a lovely smile on Raghu Dasa.

Once, Raghu Dasa suffered from a serious disease, and he lay unconscious in the bed.At that time, no one was there to help him. Due to his poor health, Raghu Dasa had passed the urine in the bed itself. Suddenly one small boy appeared in front of him, and he began to serve him, by removing the dirt from his body, and applied nice sandal paste all over his body. Raghu Dasa woke up from the bed, and he began to know, that the boy was none other than his beloved Lord Jagannath, and joyful tears began to flow from his eyes, and he worshipped his beloved god again and again. The boy then showed his original form to Raghu Dasa, hugged him, and consoled him using sweet words, and disappeared from that place.

Everyone in Puri began to realize his greatness, and treated him with high respect. Raghu Dasa spent his remaining life peacefully in Puri, by worshipping, meditating and singing songs on Lord Jagannath.

“OM”
WRITTEN BY
R.HARISHANKAR

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