Rishis and sadhus perform tapas for the benefit of mankind and all creation. They tolerate hardships and insults without any thought of personal gain. One such rishi was Dadhichi. He willingly offered his body to save the devas.
Once a Brahmin named Vrutra became the head of the demons. He gave up his dharma – duty – of doing good to others. Instead he turned to violence and began to battle with the devas. Hence, he became known as Vrutrasur. ‘Asur’ means demon. He began to win. The devas became frightened against his evil might. Along with Indra, they approached Shri Vishnu for help. He told them that he could not be destroyed with ordinary weapons.
“Only a weapon made from the bones of a saintly rishi will kill Vrutrasur,” revealed Vishnu.
“But nobody will give up his beloved body. Who would die to provide a weapon?” inquired the devas.
“O devas! Go to Dadhichi rishi. Make a weapon with his bones. A saintly sage will not worry about giving up his life for the good of others. Ask Dadhichi for his bones as bhikhsha – alms.”
The devas went off in search of Dadhichi rishi. When they reached his ashram, they felt anxious. Would the rishi help?
“What can I do for you?” asked Dadhichi rishi.
“Vrutrasur, the leader of the demons, is destroying us. We are losing against his evil might. So we asked Shri Vishnu for help. He advised us to make a weapon from your bones. O great rishi, please help us and deliver us from this evil,” pleaded the devas humbly.
The supreme donor is one who gives happily what is asked.
“O devas!” said Dadhichi. “It is better that my bones help you attain victory, rather than rot in the ground. The message of Sanatan Dharma is to remain happy in the happiness of others. Here, I give you my body.”
So saying, he sat in meditation and meditated upon Paramatma. With his yogic power he then left his human body.
The devas collected the bones. Indra made the vajra weapon from them. With this the devas battled with Vrutrasur. It is said that the battle lasted for 360 days. In the end the devas won. In the beginning, the devas fought with their own might and lost. Now with the help, guidance and blessings of God, they won.
In life we should always first seek guidance from God and the God-realised Sadhu for success and happiness.