There was a king who had four wives. He loved his fourth wife the most, as she was young, beautiful and very attractive.
He used to take care of his third wife too by providing her good food, latest designer clothing, and expensive jewelry.
For the second wife, he ordered his ministers to take care of her, the way she wanted and fulfill her desires in all possible manner.
But the King never took proper care for his first wife and ignored her all the way, that he almost forgot if she existed in his life.
One day when the King was nearing his death he called his fourth wife(whom he loved the most) and asked her to accompany him, in his journey after his death, as he feels scared to be all alone after death.
The fourth wife replied in negative and said she cannot accompany him after his death as she is still young, good looking and attractive. She would, in fact, marry somebody else after his death as she cannot live alone and has to enjoy, yet a long life.
Disappointed King called his third wife and made the same request for accompanying him after his death. The third wife also refused to accompany him but said that since she also cannot live without him, she would lay her body on his funeral pyre and kill herself.
Highly depressed king called his second wife to check if she would accompany him but she also refused to say that since she has her children to be taken care of, she cannot accompany the king. But however, she said she will accompany the king up to the graveyard.
Almost about to die, the King heard a voice from behind saying that I will accompany you, Oh my dear King, after your death, wherever you go!
Astonished King looked behind and saw it was her first wife. Weak, skinny and pale, revealing that she had no food for years and nobody has taken care of her. She again said! I cannot live without you and I have no existence without you dear king, hence I will accompany where you go after death!
This story is in reference to all of us having similar types of four wives in our life. The fourth wife, who is the most attractive and eternally young, is money and wealth. After our death, it goes to somebody else, without looking at us even once.
The third wife is our body. It cannot exist without us hence it will be laid on our funeral pyre and burnt or buried along with us. The second wife is the family, who will accompany us only till the graveyard.
The first wife is our Soul (Atman, the Divine Being) who will accompany us, wherever we go, even after death. The agony is that we do not care, feed and look after this soul, who is always with us while we are alive and even after death. It never leaves us alone whether we take care or not, whether we feed it or not, whether we cloth it or not. In spite of such a faithful and loving companion, we ignore it and fall prey to the worldly attractions who will be our companion only in this world and only if they are taken care of.
-Sri. Sadguru Ramesh Ji