Bhagat Namdev And The Fake Holyman

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The following hymn was addressed to a reputed holy man who had stolen a merchant's money, and falsely imputed the offence to Namdev.

The merchant had gone to bathe, and while doing so the hypocrite seated in a religious attitude stole his purse.

The merchant missed it on returning. He could not think of attributing the theft to the man in the religious garb, so he charged Bhagat Namdev Ji with it. The merchant would not accept Bhagat Namdev Ji's denial, and had him flogged.

While Bhagat Namdev Ji was being punished a storm arose which lifted the cloth on which the reputed holy man sat. The missing purse was then found under the cloth. Upon that Bhagat Namdev Ji addressed the following verses to the hypocrite :—

The serpent castes its slough, but not its poison:

Since your heart is not pure,

Why perform mock meditation and repetition of God's name?

You are as the crane watching for fish in the water.

The man who eats the food of lions,

Is called the god of thieves.

Nama's Lord has settled the quarrel;

Drink God's elixir, O double-faced one.