Bhagat Namdev Ji And Vishoba Khechar

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Bhagat Namdev Ji once went to the village of Vadval to behold the great saint Vishoba Khechar. Vishoba, in order to make a trial of Bhagat Namdev Ji, resolved to assume the appearance of a leper. He thought that in this way if Bhagat Namdev Ji's faith were not strong, he would incontinently run away.

Bhagat Namdev Ji in his search for Vishoba went into the neighbouring temple. There he saw a leper lying on the ground resting his shodden feet on a lingam, the emblem of Shiv.

On beholding the insult to the idol, Bhagat Namdev Ji, chid the leper and asked him to leave the sacred edifice. Vishoba replied that he was an old man who could not attend to nice formalities of worship, but Namdev might turn his feet in whatever direction he pleased.

Upon this Bhagat Namdev Ji raised the old man's feet and turned them in a different direction. There, too, it is said, Bhagat Namdev Ji again saw a lingam under Vishoba's feet.

He was astonished, as well he might be, on beholding this extraordinary circumstance, and asked the leper where Vishoba was. The leper replied, 'I am Vishoba.'

Bhagat Namdev Ji then asked how a man reputed to be a saint could be guilty of placing his feet on a lingam and thus outraging the god. Vishoba replied that he found no place which was not filled with God.

Bhagat Namdev Ji bowed to him, and expressed a desire to become his disciple. Vishoba then proposed to Bhagat Namdev Ji to take him outside the temple. When Vishoba was deposited there, he said he would accept Namdev as a disciple, and bade him close his eyes. Bhagat Namdev Ji did so, and on opening them saw no longer a leper, but a priest in vigorous health and manly beauty.

Bhagat Namdev Ji abode for several months with Vishoba Khechar and received instruction from him.