Citraketu | What is the story of Citraketu?

The story of Citraketu and how he was victimized by lamentation because of the death of his son.

“Citraketu, who had no sons, got an opportunity to meet the great sage Angira.

When Angira inquired from the King about his welfare, the King expressed his moroseness, and therefore by the grace of the great sage, the King’s first wife, Krtadyuti, gave birth to a son, who was the cause of both happiness and lamentation.

What happened to Citraketu’s son?

Upon the birth of this son, the King and all the residents of the palace were very happy. The co-wives of Krtadyuti, however, were envious, and later they administered poison to the child. Citraketu was overwhelmed by shock at his son’s death. Then Narada Muni and Angira went to see him.”

Angira and Narada Rsi came to relieve the King from excessive lamentation by instructing him about the spiritual significance of life.

The great saints Angira and Narada explained that the relationship between father and son is not factual; it is simply a representation of illusory energy.

The relationship did not exist before, nor will it stay in the future. By the arrangement of time, the relationship exists only in the present.

One should not lament for temporary relationships. The entire cosmic manifestation is temporary; although not unreal, it is not factual.

By the direction of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, everything created in the material world is transient.

By a temporary arrangement, a father begets a child, or a living entity becomes the child of a so-called father.

This temporary arrangement is made by the Supreme Lord. Neither the father nor the son exists independently.

As the King listened to the great sages, he was relieved from his false lamentation, and then he inquired about their identity.

The great sages presented who they were and instructed that all sufferings were due to the bodily conception of life.

When one understands his spiritual identity and surrenders to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the supreme spiritual person, one becomes actually happy.

When one searches for happiness in matter, one must certainly lament for bodily relationships.

Self-realization means the spiritual realization of one’s relationship with Krsna. Such realization ends one’s miserable material life.

Citraketu was able to talk with his dead son and hear from him the truth of life.

When Citraketu was appeased, the great sage Narada gave him a mantra, and by chanting this mantra Citraketu found shelter at the lotus feet of Sankarsana.

The living entity is eternal. Thus he has neither birth nor death (na hanyate hanyamane sarire).

According to the reactions of one’s fruitive activities, one takes birth in various species of life among the birds, beasts, trees, human beings, demigods and so on, thus rotating through various bodies.

For a certain period of time, one receives a particular type of body as a son or father in a false relationship.

All our relationships in this material world with friends, relatives or enemies consist of duality, in which one feels happy and distressed on the basis of illusion.

The living entity is actually a spiritual soul who is part and parcel of God and has nothing to do with relationships in the world of duality.

Therefore Narada Muni advised Citraketu not to lament for his so-called dead son.

After hearing instructions from their dead child, Citraketu and his wife could understand that all relationships in this material world are causes of misery.

The queens who had administered poison to the son of Krtadyuti were very much ashamed. They atoned for the sinful act of killing a child and gave up their aspiration to have sons.

Thereafter. Narada Muni chanted prayers to Narayana, who exists as catur-vyuha, and instructed Citraketu about the Supreme Lord, who creates, maintains and annihilates everything and who is the master of material nature.

After instructing King Citraketu in this way, he returned to Brahmaloka. These instructions about the Absolute Truth are called the maha-vidya.

After being initiated by Narada Muni, King Citraketu chanted the maha-vidya, and after one week he attained the presence of Lord Sankarsana, who was surrounded by the four Kumaras.

The Lord was nicely dressed in bluish garments, with a helmet and ornaments of gold. His face appeared very happy.

In the presence of Lord Sankarsana, Citraketu offered his obeisances and began to offer prayers.

In his prayers, Citraketu said that millions of universes rest in the pores of Sankarsana, who is limitless, having no beginning and end.

The Lord is well known to the devotees for His eternity.

The difference between worshipping the Lord and worshipping the demigods is that the worshiper of the Lord also becomes eternal, whereas whatever benedictions one can get from the demigods are impermanent.

Unless one becomes a devotee, one cannot understand the Supreme Personality of Godhead.”

Reference: Srimad-bhagavatam 6:14-16

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