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Penance of Dhruva

(Ref: Srimad Bhagavatam - Skanda 4 - 8 to 9)

Penance of child DhruvaIntroduction: Child Dhruva set out to perform penance to gain the favour of his father king Uttanapada (son of Swayambhuva Manu and Satarupa), who did not take him on his lap on the advice of stepmother Suruchi. King Uttanapada had two queens - Suniti and Suruchi; but Suruchi and her son Uttama was more dear to the king, and Suniti and her son Dhruva was rather neglected.

Path shown by sage Narada: When Dhruva left home, sage Narada met him on the path. Initially Narada Muni tried to dissuade child Dhruva from penance, but Dhruva was of firm resolve. Pleased to see his resolve, Narada Muni then showed him the path. Narada Muni instructed Dhruva to go to the virtuous forest Madhuvana on the bank of river Yamuna. Then taking bath three times in the pure water of river Yamuna, he should perform Astanga Yoga and controlling his breath gradually control the vital air of life, mind and senses. Then he should meditate on the Supreme God. Sage Narada described the form of the Supreme God and gave the twelve-syllable mantra "Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya". Then the sage told about the method of worship of the Lord. Dhruva circumambulated Narada as his spiritual master and offered him obeisance.

Entering Madhuvana on the bank of river Yamuna: Then Dhruva entered Madhuvana on the bank of river Yamuna. He took bath in the river and observed fasting at night. Then he engaged in the worship of the Supreme God.

The Tapas: On the first month Dhruva ate only fruits and berries on every third day and worshipped the Supreme God. On the second month, Dhruva ate only dry grass and leaves every six days and continued his worship. On the third month, Dhruva drank only water every nine days and continued the worship. On the fourth month, Dhruva became the master of his breath and only inhaled air every twelfth day. On the fifth month, Dhruva controlled his breath perfectly and standing on only one leg meditated on the Parabrahman. Dhruva captured the Supreme God within his heart. The pressure of his big toe pushed down half the earth. Due to his controlled breath and becoming practically one in heaviness with Lord Vishnu, the universal breathing became choked. The demigods felt suffocated and took shelter of the Supreme Lord. The Supreme Lord assured that He will stop the austerities of Dhruva.

Lord's Darshan: The Lord went to Madhuvana by mounting on Garuda. Dhruva was absorbed in meditation of the Lord in his heart. The form of the Lord in his heart disappeared and Dhruva becoming perturbed opened his eyes. Dhruva saw the Supreme Lord personally present before him. Feeling greatly agitated, he offered obeisance to the Lord in various ways. The Lord touched his conchshell on the forehead of Dhruva. Dhruva became aware of the essence of the Vedas. He then worshipped the Lord with hymns of eulogy.

Lord's Boon: Pleased with the austerities and prayers of Dhruva, the Lord awarded the abode of polestar to him which exist even after dissolution at the end of the millenium. It is surrounded by all solar systems, planets and stars and all luminaries in the sky circumambulate this planet. No one had ever ruled this planet. The Lord told Dhruva that in future he will rule his father's kingdom for thirty-six thousand years, and he will not become old. After enjoying the material life, he will go to the planet of the Lord which is above the planet of the seven rishis and never again come back to the material world.

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Meditation on Earth and Life: >>

Om, May there be Peace in Heaven,
May there be Peace in the Sky,
May there be Peace in the Earth,

(Shanti Mantra of Upanishad)

Preserve Nature,
And Nature will preserve Us,
Simplify Life,
And help Nature thrive,
Plant Trees,
And make our planet Green.

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Last updated on Aug-2021

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