The story of Dundukaari illustrates the greatness of theBhagavata Purana, which talks of Lord Krishna’s childhood.
Atmadeva was a scholar and an upright man. But his wife
Dunduli was the exact opposite for, she lacked his
uprightness. Atmadeva was sorry about his wife’s lack of
values, but he bore his misfortune with fortitude.
However, he wanted to be blessed with a child and he hadnot been fortunate in this respect. Atmadeva approached a
sage for his blessings, said P.T. Seshadri, in a discourse. The
sage said Atmadeva was destined to be childless for seven
births. Atmadeva was devastated. He begged the sage to do
something to ensure that such an eventuality was averted.
The sage had the power to overturn Atmadeva’s destiny. So
he gave him a fruit and said if his wife ate it, she would bear a child. But Dunduli was not interested. So she sought the help of her sister who was expecting. The sister promised to give Dunduli her child. Thereupon, Dunduli asked Atmadeva to go on a pilgrimage and she gave the fruit to a cow. In course of time, her sister gave birth to a child and the cow too gave birth to a child, which had ears like a cow. The latter was named Gokarna and the former Dundukaari.
Gokarna grew up to be a responsible son while Dundukaari fell into bad company and was killed. Gokarna performed all the last rites for Dundukaari, but noticed thatDundukaari’s spirit had not left the earth, but wandered
about restlessly. Gokarna asked Brahma what he should do to help Dundukaari attain liberation. Brahma advised the
recitation of Srimad Bhagavatam for seven days. At the end
of the seventh day, Dundukaari’s soul departed for