In the city of Prathistanapuram on the bank of the holy river Narmada there lived a Vysya called “Dharma” who also known as Chudamani. He lived a very pious life and following the scriptures. Dharma and wife were blessed with every happiness but children. He approached chyavana Maharshi, Dharma worshipped Sri Maha Vishnu and was blessed with a son who was named Dharmanandana. Chyavana Maharshi taught him vedasm, sritis and Dharma Sastras in his Ashram.
One day Dharmanandana went to the forest ot collect Dharbha, wood, flowers and fruits for his Guru. There he heard the cries of a Brahmin. A tribal was dragging him to sacrifice him to a Kshudra Devatha (Goddess of Demons) for his personal ends. Having realized that one has to protect the holy cow and a Brahmin, Dharmanandana entreated the tribal to leave the Vipra (Brahmin) and offered himself for the sacrifice and got the pious Brahmin released and followed the rribal.
As it was destined by God, the king of that region was seen approaching the tribal. The tribal feared danger. He immediately put Dharmanandana in a cave and closed it with a big rock. The king saw the tribal. He suspected the tribal as he was sitting among the branches of a tree and ordered him to be killed after an enquiry for which the fellow could not answer properly. As the king did not know that Dharmanandana was in the cave behind the rock, he left the place. Now the Brahmin was left to his fate. The only thing a pious devotee knows in case of a problem is to pray God. So Dharmanandana started doing penance. At that time the king of Nagas Vasuki was on his way to see Adi Sesha. Finding a big rock obstructing his way; Vasuki broke the rock with his powerful sight. Dharmanandana, who was in his meditation found Vasuki and prayed him and told him about his ordeal. The Nagaraju was pleased and took Dharmananda to pathala Loka where Adi Sesha was the ruler. Dharmananda praised Adi Sesha with his prayers. Then Adi Sesha said, “Dharmanandana Dharma alone reaches the abode of the Lord Paramatma. Vedas radiated such Dharma, which leads to Sadgathi i.e., the journey to the abode of bliss. Brahmanas safeguard Vedas by reciting them as well as by teaching them to others. In order to safeguard such a Vedic Scholar, you were ready to lay down your life. Your life. Your life is blessed. Hence askl me any boon you like.” Through him, Dharmanandana heard the entire episode of
Sri Vasavi Kanyakaparameswari from the beginning of the creation to the future happening of Kanyaka parameswari entering the holy fire, that is, the entire story of Vysya Vamsam. He was also blessed with the death at his own choice. With the helop of Nagas he returned home. He narrated the happening to his Guru and his parents. After led a saintly life as decreed by Dharma Dharmananda was born as ‘Somadatta' in his next birth. Somadatta was a great decvogee of Lord shiva. Samadhi prayed Goddess Parameswari. She blessed him with the capacity of destroying the evil Sanga Vamsam. In his next birth Samadhi was born as the great KUSUMA SHRESTI of Penugonda, the father of Goddess Kanyaka Parameswari. After that janma he attained the eternal bliss that is Moksha.
SPECIAL POOJAS :TEACHINGS OF APARARKA MAHARSHI TO VYSYAS
Paramatma, the creator of all, created the best of all, the man. He modeled him taking utmost care. Brahma ordai9ned Angirasa, Vasista and Apararka as the Gurus of Brahmin, Kshatriyas and Vysyas respectively. Maharshi Apararka imparted Vysya the knowledge of selling and buying, the distinction between sin and benevolence, how to follow Dharma, performing pious and good deeds. He instructed them that they could clear off the Rishi Runam (the owes to Rishis) through Veda Purana Sravanam (listening to Vedas and Puranas), dues to their ancestors by improving their Vamsam through Veda Purana Sravanam (listening to Vedas and Puranas), dues to their ancestors by improving their Vamsam through begetting Sathsanthanam and dues to Gods (Devatha Runam) by performing all the sacred rituals. Vysyas shuld take care of cows, peform righteous business, follow Dharma and Nyaya, and perform cultivation at the right time to benefit all the prople in the society. Apararka Maharshi instructed the Vysyas as follows : Cow is the embodiment of all Gods. So, they must protect cows and perform “Go Puja”. They must do business in the righteous way. They must have righteous behaviour. They must cultivate at the business in pearls, diamond gums and other costly stones with good time sense and care.
They must treat only that amount as their earning which is left over after being used for Dharma Karyams. Even out of this, a part must be kept aside as caution deposit and they perform their business with the remaining. They should not be satisfied with what they have earned righteously. They should enjoy well. They should earn well for their old age when they are young in the same way, as one will earn during the day for the night. Most importantly Vysyas must earn Punyam for the sake of happiness in the Para Loka. Thus the Maharshi exhorted Vysyas to peform their duties for God and the society, following Dharma.
SPECIAL POOJAS :CONFERENCE AT BRAHMALOKAM
Once Brahmana, Kshatriya and Vysyas went to Brahma Loka to see Brahma. At that meeting, Vysyas ridiculed Brahma Loka to see Brahma. At that meeting, Vysyas ridiculed Brahmans in a very abjuring manner. 102 Gotrajas covered their faces and tried to obstruct the others in mild way. The Brahmans in the number of Gotras. 612 of these Vysya Gotrajas abused the Brahmans in a very abjuring manner. 102 Gotrajas covered their faces and tried to obstruct the others in a mild way. The Brahmans cursed the 612 Gotrajas. The remaining 102 Gotrajas appeased them. Then the Brahmans were pleased with them and said that these 102 Gotrajas will remain forever on the earth gloriously. They will enter the sacrificial fire for the sake of a celebrated maiden. Later on their generations will be gloriously known forever as 102 Gotrajas. Others of course do not enter the fire and hance they will perish. Thus the Vysyas are well known as people of 102 gotras.
SPECIAL POOJAS :STORY OF PRABHAVATHI AND SOMADATHA
These Vysyas of 102 Gotras worshipped God Shiva as advised by Aparaka Maharshi attained them Somadatha, a great devotee of Shiva, desired to marry Prabhavathi, the daughter of “Vyraju”. He sent his wide messengers to him in this regard. But Vyraju could not accept to the match for fear of the Gandharva king. Then Lord Shiva celebrated Somadatha's marriage with Prahbhavathi in the middle of a celestial hall with five Kalpatharus as pillars in the presence of Ambika and Lakshmi. Shiva decreed that thereafter Vysyas should marry in the marriage hall with five stupas or pillars. Hence the marriages are thus celebrated as destined by Lord Shiva. Somadatha and Prabhavathi lived together to be a very ideal and pious couple. In his next janmas Somadatha was born as “Somadhi” and “Kusuma Shresti”, before he secured Kaivalyam.
SPECIAL POOJAS :KEERTHI KANYAKA
Kantha, the daughter of Prabhavathi and Somadatha grew up to be an exceedingly beautiful and pious girl. She become as charming as Sachi Devi, the wife of Indra as the attained her youth. She learned all the 64 arts and spent her time in the devotion of Lord Shiva.
One a full moon night, she visited the beautiful flower garden along with her maids. There played on her Veena named, ‘Kalavathi' in praise of Shiva. Her music was so fascinating that a gandharva called “Chitrakantha” was so wholly fascinated by her music and fell in love with her and requested Somadatta for her daughter's hand. But the Vysya community rejected his proposal. Chitrakanta looked at Keerthi with pleading eyes but in vain. The angry Gandharva then cursed the Vysyas to leave Kailasam and live on the earth and perish in fire along with a maid. The Vysyas retaliated by cursing him to born in the family of low birth and die a miserable death. This mutual exchange of curses will be for the good of human community, so said the Maharshis there.
As ordained by Maharshi Kanva, Somadatha decided to perform the marriage of his daughter Keerthi Kantha with his nephew Sudantha. But Sudantha suddenly became ill and very weak. Then Nandeeswara, realizing that it was the illusion (maya) set by the frustrated Gandharva, placed the couple in the holy garden of Parvathi for seven days. The maya disappeared and the two became ever brighter. Nandeeswara then told the secret to the 102 Gotraja Vysyas that Keerthi Kanta and Sudantha were no other than Parvathi Parameswara. Their marriage was celebrated in highly grand manner.
SPECIAL POOJAS :KUSUMA SHRESTI
In the ancient yugas the luminous Vysya, Dharmanandana, worshipped God in the abode of Sankara, that is Kailasa, and attained Siva Sayujyam. The same celebrity become known as Somadatha in Kailasam.
Somadatha took his rebirth as Samadhi in Swarochisha Manvantharam. He befriended kind Suradha who become the next Manu Savarni. He served Maharshi Medha in his asharam and pleased Parameswari Ammavaru. He was blessed by her to attain the jnana without arrogance or prejudice in the next birth. Accordingly Samadhi took his birth the skies rained fragrant flowers. Hence he was named Kusuma Sresti.
Kusuma Shresti ruled over the kingdom with 18 cities with his great power and capacity to the delight of his people. His capital was Penugonda. Kusuma Shresti was a greatly learned and wise man. He learnt Vedas, Vedangas and soon become the most illustrious in the Vysyas. He married Kausumbhi (Kusumamba). The daughter of another great vysya Main Kundala. The two were blessed with every happiness and prosperity except the bliss of having children.
The couple worshipped all Gods. They performed many sacrifices. They performed many Putra Kamesti Yagas as advised by Bhaskaracharya. The first parents (Adi Dampathulu) Sri Parvathi Parameswara were immensely pleased and Jagadamba appeared in person out of the sacrifical fire and presented the couple two Kalpaka Phala (the fruit of the Sacrifice). As a result Kusumamba became pregnant. The couple worshipped their family deities Nagareswara Swamy and Janardhana swamy.
Mahashakti Parvathi, herself was born as Vasavi Kanyakamba as the daughter of Kusuma Sresti and Kusumamba in Penugonda town on the banks of holy river Godavari on Firday, the Shukla Paksha Dasami of Vaisakha Masam in the year 4121 of the Kaliyuga. Sri Vasavi Kanyakamba punished the wicked king Vishnu Vardhana and saved the 102 Gotra families of the Vysyas by blessing them with all the comforts and peace and thus safeguarding the whole of the universe.
Mother Vasavamba in the Kritha Yuga killed the dangerous Chanda, Munda, Mahi and so many Rakshasas who were the enemies of the earth. In this Yuga, she is destroying Kama, Krodha, Moha, Lobha, Mada and Matsarya-the six devilish enemies in man. For this purpose she has taken Proddatur as her holy abode. She is receiving the Pujas and other offerings from the people of the town in a very glorious and distinctive manner. She blesses the people with all comforts, such as blessing with seasonal rains, good harvests and all the riches they need and to enjoy.