Idol in Child's Hands
There are no two opinions about the fact that Mira belonged to Medatha in Rajasthan. She
calls herself in one of her songs a 'Medathani' (a woman who belongs to
Medatha). She has also stated that she is a Doodajini (one of Doodaji's family) of the
Rathod royal dynasty. There were several petty feudal states in Rajasthan. Medatha
was one of them. Rao Doodaji was its Rana. Princes in Rajasthan were usually called
Ranas. Rana Rao Doodaji had four children. The eldest was Beerama Dev and the youngest,
Ratan Simha was "a brave warrior.
For a long time he did not have children. At last, by the grace of God, a daughter
was born to him. She was named Mira. She was probably born in 1498. When she was only a
child she lost her mother. At that time there were several kingdoms in India, some large
and some small. Besides, it was the age of the Moghals. Wars were frequent. Since Ratan
Simha, the father of Mira, had to spend most of his time in wars,the child had to grow up
in the palace of its grandfather. Doodaji.One day a procession was passing in front of the
palace. Mira was yet a small girl. People in the procession bowed to the Rana and
It was a wedding procession. The bride- groom was very attractively dressed.
Mira saw him. He might have looked like a big doll to those innocent eyes.
"What is that?" She asked her grand father.
"He is a bridegroom," replied he. But the little girl could not quite understand
the meaning of the word bridegroom.
"I too want one like that to play with. Please get me one" the girl said.
What could any one say to such a request of the child? It is but natural of children to
ask for every new thing they see. Without a second word the grandfather brought out a
lovely idol of Sri Krishna and placing it in her hands, said, "Look, my dear, here is
your bridegroom. Take good care of him."
Mira got what she had asked for; what else did she care for? She played with that idol and
behaved as if Krishna was her husband.
This is one story about Mira. There is nothing improbable in it. But it cannot be said for
certain that this is what really happened.
One more story about how Mira got the idol of Sri Krishna is worth considering.
Rao Doodaji had much respect for monks and saints. Almost every day some monk or the other
came to the palace as a guest of honor. Once a hermit called Raidas came to the palace. He
was prominent among the disciples of Saint Ramanand who had spread the Vaishnava cult in
North India. He had a beautiful idol of Sri Krishna. He used to worship it as his personal
deity. Mira saw it and wanted it. She asked for it. She would listen to no
one. She was stubborn and insisted on having it. Who would be prepared to part with his
personal deity just to pacify a child? The hermit left the palace after enjoying the
Mira did not stop crying. She gave up food and drink and went on crying for the idol.
Next morning Raidas returned to the palace and placed the idol of Sri Krishna, so dear to
him, in Mira's hands. Her joy knew no bounds.
Greatly surprised, "What is this?" asked Doodaji. The hermit said, "Last
Krishna appeared in my dream and said: "My beloved devotee is crying for me. Go and
give the idol to her.' It is my duty to obey my Lord's command, that is why I came back
running. Mira is a great person." So saying the hermit blessed Mira and went away.
This is another story. Some scholars say that this happened about the year 1501-2. There
are also people who say that the sanyasi was not Raidas but somebody else. Mira herself
has said in a song:
"My mind has become one with Hari. I can see my path clearly. My master Raidas
himself has given me the pill of wisdom. The name of Hari has been deeply inscribed on my
Thus Mira has clearly stated that Raidas was her spiritual master. So the story narrated
earlier may be believed. The problem lies not so much in the story as in the name of
Raidas mentioned in it.
Raidas, the disciple of Ramanand, was born in or about the year 1400. The story can be
true only if Raidas lived for more than a hundred years. One other important point is that
Raidas was a devotee of Rama. Therefore many persons do not believe that he had an idol of
Lord Krishna. But it cannot be said that he never wor- shipped Krishna and that he did not
have an idol of Krishna at all. Brindavana, Dwaraka, and the banks of river Jamuna, which
are associated with Krishna's life, are places in North India. So naturally the people
there were particularly devoted to Sri Krishna. In such circums- tances, it would not have
been unusual even if Raidas had an idol of Sri Krishna.
Some scholars say that the hermit of this story was only a disciple of Raidas. It was a
tradition to give the same name of the Guru to the disciple succeeding to the Guru's
position. So this view may be correct.
Somehow or the other, the idol of Sri Krishna came to the great tiny hands of little Mira,
as a gift from some holy man.
Sri Krishna became her companion all through her life.