Necklace Brings Grief
At home those who were opposed to her secretly till then, now began to talk about her
openly. Fretting and fuming they said that the honor of the family had fallen to the dust.
But she was known among the people as 'a great saint', and as the'Radha of Kaliyuga'. Many
people deemed it a great fortune to see her and came to touch her feet in reverence.
Here is a story which a illustrates wide spread fame.
Akbar was a great Moghal Emperor. Tansen was a celebrated musician at his court. Tansen
had seen Mira. Akbar came to know about Mira. He had heard that she had won the Grace of
Krishna and that Krishna appeared before her when she sang in the ecstasy of devotion. So
Akbar also wanted to see her. Both Tansen and Akbar decided to go to the place where Mira
But it was not so easy for a MogulEmperor to go and see a Rajput lady in Rajasthan. It
was risky to go undisguised. Many of the Rajputs were hostile to Muslims. Though Akbar was
able to make friends with quite a few of them, he had many enemies too. So according
toTansen's plan bothentered Chittore in the guise of monks. Hindus do not harm monks.
Moreover, the guise of ascetics made it easier for them to see Mira.
So,both Tansen and Akbar camedisguised as hermits to the temple where Mira lived.
At that time Mira was singing and dancing before Krishna. Her face was glowing like a
lamp. Her voice was so sweet that the listeners stood amazed and thrilled. Forgetful of
the entire world she was singing of Lai Giridhar and was dancing. Seeing Mira in that
state, the Mogul Emperor was filled with wonder and devotion. He felt ashamed that
he stood before such a saint in the false guise of a monk. He reproached himself in his
"Tansen, come let us confess before this great saint who we really are and beg her to
forgive us," said Akbar. "My Lord, if these people come to know that we are not
really monks, just think of the conse- quence. If they find out that you, the Mogul
Emperor, have come to see a Rajput lady, they will never allow us to go alive,"
Akbar was overcome with devotion and forgot himself in the song and dance of Mira.
The song and the dance ended, and Mira offered her salutation to Sri Krishna and sat down.
Akbar went up to her and bowed in salutation touching her feet. Then he took out a fine
diamond necklace and was about to place it at her feet. Mira said, "Please don't do
it. I do not take gifts of this kind."
"Mother, this I have brought as an offering to Sri Krishna. Pray accept it for
cannot take back what I have brought for Sri Krishna.Please do not refuse,"implored
"All right, it is Sri Krishna's," said Mira and put it round the neck of Sri
The necklace was dazzling. It caught the eye of every visitor. All wondered who could have
given such a gift.
Some one identified it as belonging to Akbar.
Then how did it come there?
By and by the news spread: the great Mogul Emperor had come to the temple to see Mira and
he touched her feet in reverence and offered a preciousdiamond necklace to Sri Krishna.
Rathan Simha the Second was then the Rana. This news reached him. He burned with anger. To
him it was a question of the honor of the family. "A Mogul has not only stepped upon
the sacred Rajput land but has gone back alive even after touching a Rajput lady. What a
disgrace to the family!"
He thought that Mira herself, by leading the life of an ascetic, was responsible for it.
So he began to harass her.
So goes the story. Historically viewed certain details are not correct. Tansen entered
Akbar's court in 1562, that is, 15 years after Mira's death. If this story is true, Akbar
could not have been on the throne at the time of the visit. Mira is said to have breathed
her last in Dwaraka in 1547,when Akbar was only a five year-old child. But it is not
certain that Mira died in 1547. There is also a version that Akbar was a crown prince when
he met Mira Bai. Anyway, this is a very popular story about Mira Bai. Whatever the truth
of the details, it must be true that later Mira wassubjected to terrible tortures.
The indignant Rana and his men ma several attempts to kill her.
Mira accepted everything without protest. She came out of every danger
safely. Her own song testifies to this:
Samp pitaro, Rana bhejo
Mira hath diyo joy I
Nai dhby jab dekhan lagi
Saligram gayi poy I
Jahar ka pyala Rana bhejyo
Amarit diyo vanoy
Nai doy jaI pevan lagi
amar hogayi joy II
Sul sej Ranane bheji
dijo Mira suvoy I
Sanjh bhayi Mira sovan lagi
mano phul bichoy II
Mira ke prabhu sada sahayi
rakho vidhan hatoy I
Bhakti bhav me mast dolti
Giridhar pai bali joy II
"The Rana sent to Mira a basket full of flowers with a snake concealed in it. Mira,
engaged in worship, put her hand into the basket to take some flowers. What a wonder! The
snake had changed into a saligrama." (A saligrama is a small round - shaped stone
picked from thebanks of the river Gandaki;it is worshipped as a symbol of Lord Vishnu by
"Determined to kill Mira somehow the Rana sent a cup of poison. She prayed to Lord
Krishna and drank the poison. The poison turned into nectar.
"The Rana got a bed of sharp nails made. Mira lay down on it as soon as it grew dark.
The nails instead of piercing her body became flowers. Mira was saved from all these
dangers by none other than her Lord. Intoxicated with immense love, she wanders all
over in search of her Lord, dedicating herself to him entirely."
Since several of her songs mention a number of tortures inflicted on her by the Rana, the
account must be true. How was Mira able to escape from so many dangers? Mira believed it
to be only the grace of her Lord. Her devotees also have the same belief.
The Rana never tried to kill her openly. May be he thought it was a sin to kill a woman
and feared it, or he thought that such an act would enrage the people who loved her very
much. When all his secret plots failed and Mira stood unscathed through all acts of
violence, he cursed her, "Why shouldn't this ignoble woman drown herself and