The Folklore of Lord Venkateswara

Once upon a time the rishis led by Kasyapa started to perform sacrifices on the banks of the river Ganges. They were visited by Sage Narada and he questioned them why was the sacrifice performed and who would is to be pleased. The question was unanswered by the rishis and they consulted Sage Bhrigu. To attain a solution after a direct discovery of reality, Sage Bhrigu first travelled to Satyaloka, which is the dwelling of Lord Brahma. As Lord Brahma was busy with Lakshmi he didn’t notice Bhrigu offering homage which concluded that Lord Brahma wasn’t worthy of worship.

Bhrigu left Satyaloka and travelled to Kailasa, the dwelling of Lord Shiva. As he reached Kailasa, Bhrigu discovered Lord Siva spending time with his wife Parvati and mesmerized shiva didn’t notice Bhrigu’s presence. But Bhrigu cursed Lord Shiva and arrived to Vaikuntam.

At Vaikuntam, Lord Vishnu was resting on Adisesha with Mahalakshmi sitting at His feet. Seeing that Lord Vishnu also didn’t notice the presence of Bhrigu, the sage was so much enraged he thrusted the Lord on the chest, the dwelling place of Mahalakshmi. At once, Lord Vishnu accelerated to apologize to the enraged sage and massaged his feet to alleviate the pain affected to Bhrigu’s leg.

By doing this the Lord detached the eye present in the foot of Bhrigu, which stripped of all his special powers. Immediately, the sage decided that Lord Vishnu is the most ultimate of the trimurthis.

Sri Mahalakshmi was infuriated by the action of Srinivasa for he apologised to Bhrigu who committed a serious crime. Out of annoyance she left Vaikuntam. A forsaken Lord Vishnu also left Vaikuntam and took residence under an ant-hill beneath a tamarind tree, beside the Venkata Hill and he started meditating for Lakshmi’s return, without food and sleep.

Surya, the god of Sun informed Mahalakshmi of the happenings and convinced her to adopt the form of a cowherdess and trade the cow Brahma and the calf Maheshwara to the Chola king so that in the form of cow and calf they can feed the lord. The Chola king bought the cow and the calf and sent them for grazing on the Venkata Hills along with the other herd of cattle. Finding Lord Vishnu under the ant-hill, the cow automatically gave its milk and fed the Lord.

As the milk is been given to the lord the cow was not providing any milk, for which the Chola Queen reprimanded the cowherd relentlessly. The cowherd followed the cow and saw it milking on the ant hill and enraged by the act he aimed a blow with the axe on the cow’s head. The lord rose from the ant hill received the shot on his head. The cow returned in fright to the king and. To find out the cause, the King followed the cow to the spot.

While he stood speculating how it had taken place, Lord Vishnu stood and cursed the King saying that he will become an Asura due to the offence created by his servant. The King then begged innocence, and the pleased Lord blessed him by saying that the king will be reborn as Akasa Raja and that the curse would come to an end when the Lord will be bejewelled with crown presented by Akasa Raja at the time of marriage with Padmavati. Lord Vishnu in the name of Srinivasa concluded to stay in Varaha Kshetra. He requested Sri Varahaswami to contribute him a piece land for his stay. His request was immediately granted. And the world famous Tirupati shrine was constructed.

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