Bhagawatam 195: The family tree of unrighteousness (adharma); Story of Dhruva

Govindāya namah.

Fourth Canto Chapter Eight

This chapter covers the story of five year old Dhruva, who angered by his step-mother’s sarcasm leaves home and goes into the forests. His penance and Srihari being pleased with his penance are also covered.

Maitreya Maharishi said to Vidura, “Maharishis Sanaka, Sananda, Sanat-kumara, Sanat-sujata, Narada, Rbhu, Yati, Hamsa and Aruṇi were the mind born sons of Brahma. They did not accept house-holders’s life and remained eternal celibates.

O Vidura! O conqueror of inner demons, listen! Righteousness (dharma) and unrighteousness (adharma) are both sons of Brahma. Mṛṣa (falsehood) is the wife of adharma (unrighteousness). Their son was dambha (hypocrisy) and their daughter was Māya. Childless Niṛrti adopted these two children.

Adharma (unrighteousness) is eternally accompanied by untruthfulness (asatya, Mṛṣa). Hence she is his wife. The union of unrighteousness and untruthfulness (adharma and asatya) leads to birth of hypocrisy (damba) and dishonesty in the person. The one who has these qualities in him is a demon. He resides in hell.

The union of Damba and Māya led to the birth of Lobha (greed) and Nikṛti (cunningness). Their son was Krodha (anger) and their daughter was Himsa (inflicting injury). From this union of Krodha and Himsa, Kali (quarrels) and Durukti (harsh speech) were born.

Let us understand the hidden significance within these names and associations.

When hypocrisy (Damba) combines with dishonesty, it leads to the emergence of greed (lobha) in the person. Through various cunning (nikrti) methods dishonest persons rob others of their wealth.

Due to their cunningness (Nikṛti) and greed (lobha), they secretively harm others (himsa). Anger (krodha) always follows greed (lobha). When their fraudulent plans meet with obstacles, this anger makes itself visible. This anger leads to injurious speech (durukti) and quarrels (kalaha).

The union of Kalaha (quarrels) and Durukti (harsh speech) resulted in birth of daughter Bhi (fear) and a son Mṛtyu (death). Their union in turn led to birth of their daughter Yātana (endless suffering) and son Niraya (hell).

Harmful speech (durukti) uttered during quarrels (kalaha) creates fear. The fear that the opponent may take revenge now arises in the person. As feared, if the opponent really takes revenge, then it will lead to death or murders (mṛtyu). This is a well-known fact. Hellish conditions (Niraya) always follow these quarrels and harmful speech. Hellish suffering (Yātana) is inescapable.

Vidura, I have now explained to you the descendents of adharma. I have also indicated about the destructive and devastating situations that emerge from adharma. Through this indication I have subtly explained about pralaya (dissolution). Distancing from this family gives birth to merit (punya). The person who listens thrice to this family tree will be absolved of all his sins”.

It is Maitreya Maharishi’s opinion that everyone should understand the in-depth logic contained in this family tree and thus distance from them.

Maitreya Maharishi continued, “Vidura, I have explained to you about Daksha’s yagna. Prior to this I had explained about Swāyambhuva Manu and his family tree. Swāyambhuva Manu was a partial incarnation of Srihari and he emerged from Brahma’s body.

Swāyambhuva Manu and Shataroopa had two sons viz., Priyavrata and Uttānapāda. Being partial incarnations of Lord Srihari, they competently and wisely ruled over the entire universe.

Uttānapāda had two wives Suneeti and Suruci. Among his queens, Uttānapāda loved Suruci very dearly. He showered her with a lot of love. He however did not love his other wife Suneeti. Suneeti had a son by name Dhruva. Suruci’s son was Uttama.

One day Emperor Uttānapāda was playing with Uttama, who was seated on his lap. Dhruva, who saw this, also desired to sit on his father’s lap. He approached his father with the desire to sit on his lap. King Uttānapāda however did not agree to this and did not welcome the child. Dhruva tried hard to sit on his father’s lap. Seeing his attempts, Suruci, his step-mother became envious.

As it is, she was filled with pride. Unconcerned of her husband’s presence, she addressed the child and said, “My child, you do not possess the worthiness required to sit on the King’s lap. Although it is correct that you are his son, but it is also true that you did not emerge from my womb. It is your misfortune that you were born to another woman and not to me. Since you have not born from me, you do not have the eligibility to sit on his lap. Being a child you are unaware of this and hence are trying to obtain that which does not belong to you.

Tapasārādhya puruṣaṁ tasyaivānugraheṇa me

Garbhe tvaṁ sādhayātmānaṁ yadīcchasi nṛpāsanam

If you are truly desirous of sitting on the king’s lap, then undertake rigorous penance and please the Supreme Lord. With His grace in your next birth you can be born from my womb. If you are agreeable to these conditions, your desire will definitely be fulfilled”.

With such harsh, piercing and insulting words, Suruci hurt the boy’s feelings. Dhruva noticed that his father Uttānapāda remained silent without uttering a single word even when his step-mother uttered harsh words. Just as a snake hit by a stick turns ferocious, Dhruva became intensely angry. He could be compared to Rudra in his anger.

Wailing piteously he ran away from there and approached his mother Suneeti who lovingly placed the child on her lap and gently patted him. From her attendants she came to know the reason for his grief. She was deeply distressed upon hearing the evil words spoken by Suruci.

At that moment Suneeti, who was gentle hearted, began to burn like a wire that is caught in a terrible forest-fire. Her patience was totally shattered. Recollecting the words of her co-wife, she began to lament loudly. Her lotus-like eyes were filled with tears which began to flow profusely from her eyes.

Madhavāya namah.

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