Narada Muni story: Learning should not be only book-based

Narada Muni story: Learning should not be only book-based

Once Narada was sitting in Lord Shiva’s court on Mount Kailasa.

It was attended by illustrious sages and brahmarishis.

Just then Durvasa entered the assembly carrying a huge bundle of books.

Although Durvasa was a great saint, he was highly irascible and quick-tempered.

Ignoring the august assembly, he went and sat beside Lord Shiva.

Shiva asked him smilingly: “Sir, how are your studies progressing?”

The saint proudly displayed his bundle of books and said, “I have thoroughly studied these books and I know them by heart.”

Narada stood up and called Durvasa a donkey carrying a burden of books on his back. Durvasa thundered in wrath.

Narada retorted, “There you are! You have not been able to get over your passions in spite of your scholarship. You have ignored the assembly and gone and sat by Lord Shiva. What good is scholarship without respect, patience and forgiveness? These books are nothing but the burden of a donkey.”

Durvasa realized his folly, immersed his books into the sea and went for a long penance to seek atonement and self-realization.