In his first outing as a children's writer, Pattanaik, a doctor by education and a leadership consultant by profession, provides a unique perspective to our myths and legends for today's (April 15) kids in "Fun in Devlok Series".
So why was Krishna not allowed to board an aeroplane? Because he did not have an identity card. Then his friends Garuda and Sesha took him to meet Lata-kumari in Guwahati, who told him the story of Anasuya and the Ashwini twins, and why Rishi Chavan made a rule that all gods should carry a dhvaja - a flag with each god's very own symbol.
"An identity card for Krishna" deals with this story and whether Krishna really got his card and could ultimately fly.
"I really feel children should know stories of the gods and the goddesses so that they narrate them to their parents at bedtime, since the parents do not know enough. It is now the responsibility of kids to reveal the wisdom of our ancestors," says Pattanaik.
"Myths are subjective truths expressed through stories, symbols and rituals. I help people leverage the power of these truths in business, management, and life," he says.
Finding time to write is not so difficult for the mythologist as "you find the time as you are passionate about it". Creativity, according to him, is something that one lives with.
The second book of the series is "Indra Finds Happiness". Little Harsha was sad, so a cloud flew him up to Indra''s palace, just to show him that the king of gods was sadder than him! There with his new friends, Indra and Airavata, the six-tusked white elephant, Harsha sees so many amazing things - a wish-fulfilling tree, a pot of never-ending gold and a potion that keeps Indra healthy.
"It never goes. One has to respect and give it due attention and allow it to rest once in a while," Pattanaik told PTI.
Then Indra thinks of a naughty plan - to steal Vasishta's cow! When he catches Indra, a very angry Vasishta tells him the secret to being happy.
"In Gauri and The Talking Cow", little Gauri thinks milk comes from packets, till she meets Sweety the talking cow.
Sweety tells Gauri about the first cow on earth, Surabhi, and how she provided so many useful things to man: fuel, manure, medicine and shelter.
Sweety narrates stories about a king who found good luck because he gifted cows to many people and how another king was turned into a lizard because he was not careful about who he gave his cows to!