Are aggressive sages like Durvasa not true sages?


There are 3 methods of adoring the Almighty, as far as I understood.

  1. Performing religious rituals, as laid down in Sastras, offering prayers at prescribed times, following Dharmic way of life - ritualistic life.- Example: Dasaratha, Yudhisthira, etc.

  2. Performing tantric rituals, as laid down in tantra texts, undergoing severe austerities, if necessary by performing various Homas, which are prohibited by Vedic way of life (dakshinachAra), for achieving powers in a shortest possible period - Example: Ravana, Indrajit, etc.

  3. Performing severe austerities, with a view to obtaining SELF REALISATION. Example: Sage Vasistha, Sage Viswamitra, Sri Ramana Maharshi, etc.

Sage Durvasa, Sage Viswamitra, etc, fall into the 3rd Category.

However, we have to understand that there will be different stages/phases in one's life, even in the lives of sages.

Sage Viswamitra did not become a brahmarshi overnight.

  • After performing one thousand years of ascesis in Southern side, he was declared as a Kingly-rishi . The episode of wasting of his ascetic power on Trishanku happened at this juncture

  • After performing austerities for one thousand years in Western side, he had become a rAjarshi. The incident of rescuing Shunashepa and enjoying conjugal bliss with Menaka (10 years) happened then.

  • After performing austerities for one thousand years in Northern side, he was conferred with Supremacy among Sages.

  • Another thousand years were spent in austerities. Cursing of Rambha happened then , wasting his austerity power.

  • After performing austerities for one thousand years in Eastern side, he had to forgo his meal to Indra, which he did without murmur.

  • Again spending another 1000 years, he became brahmarshi.

So occurrence of pitfalls while performing austerities are common in the lives of most of the sages. It never indicates they are fake sages, but indicates various phases of pitfalls and rising up again.

They are sages, without doubt.

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