37.I AM NO CRANE
The brahmana was shocked beyond measure and stood at a distance in disgust. The butcher suddenly rose from his seat, came to the brahmana and inquired: "Revered sir, are you well? Did that chaste brahmana lady send you to me?" The brahmana was stupefied. "Revered sir, I know why you have come. Let us go home," said the butcher and he took the brahmana to his house where he saw a happy family and was greatly struck by the devotion with which the butcher served his parents. Kausika took his lessons from that butcher on dharma, man's calling and duty. Afterwards, the brahmana returned to his house and began to tend his parents, a duty, which he had rather neglected before. The moral of this striking story of Dharmavyadha so skillfully woven by Vedavyasa into the Mahabharata, is the same as the teaching of the Gita. Man reaches perfection by the honest pursuit of whatever calling falls to his lot in life, and that this is really worship of God who created and pervades all. (Bhagavad Gita, XVIII, 45-46) The occupation may be one he is born to in society or it may have been forced on him by circumstances or be may have taken it up by choice. But what really matters is the spirit of sincerity and faithfulness with which be does his life's work. Vedavyasa emphasizes this great truth by making a scholarly brahmana, who did not know it, learn it from a butcher, who lived it in his humble and despised life.