Uttanka and the celestial horse

Note: In the previous post, we read about how Uttanka pursued Takshaka into Nagalog (the domain of the serpents) and glorified the serpents and Takshaka to obtain the earrings. In this post, we will see how he is able to get the earrings from Takshaka.

Uttanka was hoping that Takshaka would return the earrings after he glorified the serpents and Takshaka. But Takshaka also coveted those earrings a lot. He didn’t respond to Uttanka’s praises. When Uttanka realized that Takshaka wasn’t going to return the earrings, he looked around and thought about an alternate plan to retrieve his earrings.

As he looked around, he noticed two women at a loom weaving a piece of cloth with black and white threads. The warp was of white thread and the weft, which was of black thread, was being woven using a very fine tool.

Near the loom was a wheel with twelve spokes. It was being turned by six boys. He also noticed a man with a healthy and well-groomed horse. Uttanka addressed them with the following mantras.

“This wheel whose circumference is marked by twenty-four divisions representing lunar fortnights is furnished with three hundred spokes! It is kept in continuous motion by six boys representing the six seasons! 

These two women representing universal nature are continuously weaving a cloth of black and white threads, ushering into existence the manifold worlds and the beings that live in those worlds. 

O wielder of the thunder, the protector of the universe, the slayer of Vritra and Namuchi. O illustrious one, wearing the black cloth, you show truth and untruth in the universe. You own the horse which was received from the depths of the ocean. This horse is another form of Agni (the God of fire). I bow to you, O supreme Lord of the three worlds. O Purandara!”

Note: Purandara is another name for Indra.

Hearing these words, the man with the horse said to Uttanka, “I am gratified by your adoration and I want to do something good for you. What can I do?”

Uttanka replied, “Help me bring the serpents under my control.”

“Blow into this horse,” the man said.

Uttanka did as he was told and the moment he blew into the horse, fire and smoke came out from the horse’s ears, nose, and every opening. The fire along with the smoke began to spread over the entire region of the serpents. 

Takshaka was surprised by what was happening. He rushed out of hiding and returned the earrings to Uttanka.

However, when Uttanka took the earrings, he also realized that today was the sacred day when his teacher’s wife wanted to wear the earrings. He had to give them to her immediately, however, he was very far from his teacher’s house. Uttanka was once again in a fix because there was no way he could give these earrings to his teacher’s wife on time.

Note: In the next post, we will find out if Uttanka is able to give the earrings as guru-dakshina to his teacher’s wife on time.

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