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Shreemad Bhagavatam

Chapter Twenty-one

The Dynasty of Bharata

1. Sukadeva Gosvami said: Because Bharadvaja was delivered by the Marut demigods, he was known as Vitatha. The son of Vitatha was Manyu, and from Manyu came five sons—Brhatksatra, Jaya, Mahavirya, Nara and Garga. Of these five, the one known as Nara had a son named Sankrti.

2. O Maharaja Pariksit, descendant of Pandu, Sankrti had two sons, named Guru and Rantideva. Rantideva is famous in both this world and the next, for he is glorified not only in human society but also in the society of the demigods.

3-5. Rantideva never endeavored to earn anything. He would enjoy whatever he got by the arrangement of providence, but when guests came he would give them everything. Thus he underwent considerable suffering, along with the members of his family. Indeed, he and his family members shivered for want of food and water, yet Rantideva always remained sober. Once, after fasting for forty-eight days, in the morning Rantideva received some water and some foodstuffs made with milk and ghee, but when he and his family were about to eat, a brahmana guest arrived.

6. Because Rantideva perceived the presence of the Supreme Godhead everywhere, and in every living entity, he received the guest with faith and respect and gave him a share of the food. The brahmana guest ate his share and then went away.

7. Thereafter, having divided the remaining food with his relatives, Rantideva was just about to eat his own share when a sudra guest arrived. Seeing the sudra in relationship with the Supreme Personality of Godhead, King Rantideva gave him also a share of the food.

8. When the sudra went away, another guest arrived, surrounded by dogs, and said, “O King, I and my company of dogs are very hungry. Please give us something to eat.”

9. With great respect, King Rantideva offered the balance of the food to the dogs and the master of the dogs, who had come as guests. The King offered them all respects and obeisances.

10. Thereafter, only the drinking water remained, and there was only enough to satisfy one person, but when the King was just about to drink it, a candala appeared and said, “O King, although I am lowborn, kindly give me some drinking water.”

11. Aggrieved at hearing the pitiable words of the poor fatigued candala, Maharaja Rantideva spoke the following nectarean words.

12. I do not pray to the Supreme Personality of Godhead for the eight perfections of mystic yoga, nor for salvation from repeated birth and death. I want only to stay among all the living entities and suffer all distresses on their behalf, so that they may be freed from suffering.

13. By offering my water to maintain the life of this poor candala, who is struggling to live, I have been freed from all hunger, thirst, fatigue, trembling of the body, moroseness, distress, lamentation and illusion.

14. Having spoken thus, King Rantideva, although on the verge of death because of thirst, gave his own portion of water to the candala without hesitation, for the King was naturally very kind and sober.

15. Demigods like Lord Brahma and Lord Siva, who can satisfy all materially ambitious men by giving them the rewards they desire, then manifested their own identities before King Rantideva, for it was they who had presented themselves as the brahmana, sudra, candala and so on.

16. King Rantideva had no ambition to enjoy material benefits from the demigods. He offered them obeisances, but because he was factually attached to Lord Visnu, Vasudeva, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, he fixed his mind at Lord Visnu’s lotus feet.

17. O Maharaja Pariksit, because King Rantideva was a pure devotee, always Krishna conscious and free from all material desires, the Lord’s illusory energy, maya, could not exhibit herself before him. On the contrary, for him maya entirely vanished, exactly like a dream.

18. All those who followed the principles of King Rantideva were totally favored by his mercy and became pure devotees, attached to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Narayana. Thus they all became the best of yogis.

19-20. From Garga came a son named Sini, and his son was Gargya. Although Gargya was a ksatriya, there came from him a generation of brahmanas. From Mahavirya came a son named Duritaksaya, whose sons were Trayyaruni, Kavi and Puskararuni. Although these sons of Duritaksaya took birth in a dynasty of ksatriyas, they too attained the position of brahmanas. Brhatksatra had a son named Hasti, who established the city of Hastinapura [now New Delhi].

21. From King Hasti came three sons, named Ajamidha, Dvimidha and Purumidha. The descendants of Ajamidha, headed by Priyamedha, all achieved the position of brahmanas.

22. From Ajamidha came a son named Brhadisu, from Brhadisu came a son named Brhaddhanu, from Brhaddhanu a son named Brhatkaya, and from Brhatkaya a son named Jayadratha.

23. The son of Jayadratha was Visada, and his son was Syenajit. The sons of Syenajit were Rucirasva, Krdhahanu, Kasya and Vatsa.

24. The son of Rucirasva was Para, and the sons of Para were Prthusena and Nipa. Nipa had one hundred sons.

25. King Nipa begot a son named Brahmadatta through the womb of his wife, Krtvi, who was the daughter of Suka. And Brahmadatta, who was a great yogi, begot a son named Visvaksena through the womb of his wife, Sarasvati.

26. Following the instructions of the great sage Jaigisavya, Visvaksena compiled an elaborate description of the mystic yoga system. From Visvaksena, Udaksena was born, and from Udaksena, Bhallata. All these sons are known as descendants of Brhadisu.

27. The son of Dvimidha was Yavinara, whose son was Krtiman. The son of Krtiman was well known as Satyadhrti. From Satyadhrti came a son named Drdhanemi, who became the father of Suparsva.

28-29. From Suparsva came a son named Sumati, from Sumati came Sannatiman, and from Sannatiman came Krti, who achieved mystic power from Brahma and taught six samhitas of the Pracyasama verses of the Sama Veda. The son of Krti was Nipa; the son of Nipa, Udgrayudha; the son of Udgrayudha, Ksemya; the son of Ksemya, Suvira; and the son of Suvira, Ripunjaya.

30. From Ripunjaya came a son named Bahuratha. Purumidha was sonless. Ajamidha had a son named Nila by his wife known as Nalini, and the son of Nila was Santi.

31-33. The son of Santi was Susanti, the son of Susanti was Puruja, and the son of Puruja was Arka. From Arka came Bharmyasva, and from Bharmyasva came five sons—Mudgala, Yavinara, Brhadvisva, Kampilla and Sanjaya. Bharmyasva prayed to his sons, “O my sons, please take charge of my five states, for you are quite competent to do so.” Thus his five sons were known as the Pancalas. From Mudgala came a dynasty of brahmanas known as Maudgalya.

34. Mudgala, the son of Bharmyasva, had twin children, one male and the other female. The male child was named Divodasa, and the female child was named Ahalya. From the womb of Ahalya by the semen of her husband, Gautama, came a son named Satananda.

35. The son of Satananda was Satyadhrti, who was expert in archery, and the son of Satyadhrti was Saradvan. When Saradvan met Urvasi, he discharged semen, which fell on a clump of sara grass. From this semen were born two all-auspicious babies, one male and the other female.


36. While Maharaja Santanu was on a hunting excursion, he saw the male and female children lying in the forest, and out of compassion he took them home. Consequently, the male child was known as Krpa, and the female child was named Krpi. Krpi later became the wife of Dronacarya.

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