Elaborate arrangements were made to receive and host Ganapati. Kubera, his family were very eager to host the divine guest. The chief guest arrived at the appointed time driven punctually by his carrier, the mouse. The sound from conch shell heralded his arrival. All the cooks, suppliers and servants were in their highest spirit of enthusiasm because they never got, nor would they ever get an imperial guest like Ganesh. It was their fortune. After the courteous greetings and customary salutations the serving of breakfast started. Glasses after glasses of fruit juices were consumed. When containers like glasses and mugs were found inadequate to satisfy the guest, jugs and finally buckets full of juices were served. All fruits, dry and fresh were exhausted and other delicacies were served. All of them were served in continuous succession and were consumed instantly. The kitchen was almost empty. But it seemed that the hunger of the guest was far from getting quelled. Impatient at the slow and tardy (the guest thought) service, the guest himself arose and went to the kitchen.
Ganesh started consuming whatever had been left out. Not yet satisfied, he swallowed whatever he found there: spoons, knives, utensils, buckets, vessels and finally he plucked and swallowed the shamiana. Having found himself still hungry, he went after Kubera demanding more food. All the men of Kubera had by this time fled and hid themselves fearing the impending calamity. Kubera, now finding himself in a difficult situation, ran towards Kailasa and fell at the feet of the Lord and sought refuge. Ganesh following Kubera, reached there. Lord Shiva took a fruit out and chanting a mantra offered it to Ganesh. He ate it and his hunger was satiated. Kubera learnt a fitting lesson and his pride went before a fall.
Saint Vyas, the compiler of the Vedas had codified the eighteen Puranas. Still he did not get satisfaction. He thought deeply and continually for the ways and means to elevate the common people from sins and bring amelioration to all. Having conceived the fabulous story of the Mahabharat Vyas approached Lord Brahma and extolling him said:“O Lord and creator of all beings, I have imbibed a grand story. This will certainly do well to your progenies and teach them all morals and ethics.”Vyasa then gave a brief account of the story.
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( To be concluded)