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The Soothsayer's Son

The elder brother, after finishing the pûjâ, demanded his brother’s corpse of the god. The god called his Gaṇas who came to the front blinking, and fearing the anger of their master. The god was greatly enraged. The elder brother was very angry. When the corpse was not forthcoming he cuttingly remarked, “Is this, after all, the return for my deep belief in you? You are unable even to return my brother’s corpse.” Gaṇêśa was much ashamed at the remark, and at the uneasiness that he had caused to his worshipper. So he, by his divine power, gave him a living Gaṅgâdhara instead of the dead corpse. Thus was the second son of the Soothsayer restored to life.

The brothers had a long talk about each other’s adventures. They both went to Ujjaini, where Gaṅgâdhara married the princess, and succeeded to the throne of that kingdom. He reigned for a long time, conferring several benefits upon his brother. How is the horoscope to be interpreted? A special synod of Soothsayers was held. A thousand emendations were suggested. Gaṅgâdhara would not accept them. At last one Soothsayer cut the knot by stopping at a different place in reading, “Samudra tîrê maraṇam kiñchit.” “On the sea-shore death for some time. Then “Bhôgam bhavishyati.” “There shall be happiness for the person concerned.” Thus the passage was interpreted. “Yes; my father’s words never went wrong,” said Gaṅgâdhara. The three brute kings continued their visits often to the Soothsayer’s son, the then king of Ujjaini. Even the faithless goldsmith became a frequent visitor at the palace, and a receiver of several benefits from royal hands.

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