King Chitraketu and His Son Harshasokha
The story of king Chitraketu is described in the sixth canto of Srimad Bhagavatam. In previous article it was described how king Chitrakethu was lamenting for a son and the great sage Angira mercifully accepted his plea for son and offered him the benediction. Angira rishi informed the king about his fate and asked him to call his son Harshasokha because as he will be the cause of both harsa (jubilation) and sokha (lamentation) for the king. Let us know how it came to be true.
By the power of sacrificial sweet rice Queen Krtadyuti became pregnant. Very soon she gave birth to a baby boy and king named him Harshasokha. The news went all corners of the earth and all the citizens of the state were extremely happy. The king was overjoyed.
King Chitraketu took bath and dressed nicely to perform the birth ceremony of the child. He took the benedictions of all learned brahmanas and gave large amounts of gold, silver, ornaments and land as charity. He gave about six hundred million cows in charity. King distributed everything just to increase the opulence, reputation and longevity of his son Harshasokha.
When Sage Angira told about his son to king Chitraketu as jubilation as well as lamentation, he did not consider the statement seriously. He thought, “My son is giving so much jubilation to everyone. But due to only child and beloved one he will become proud and may not be obedient. Never mind, it is better than not having son at all.”
Distress of Co-queens
As Chitraketu carefully raised his son with great care, his affection for Krtadyuti increased so much that he lost interest in his other wives. Upon seeing Krtadyuti’s son Harshasokha, other co-wives became restless with a desire to have their own children. In their distress, which was born of envy, the queens lamented and felt very low of themselves. They felt as if they were like maidservants of the child.
Slowly but steadily the envy of other queens became strong. They lost all good intelligence and became very hard hearted and intolerant. They finally vented their anger and went to the extent of poisoning the child. And when nurse came to see the child and she found him dead, Queen Krtadyuti came running to the spot and saw her son dead, she immediately fell unconscious onto floor. All the residents, along with the queens who poisoned the child, could hear Krtadyuti wailing loudly came started crying loudly, although other queens made a show.
Read on to know what happened after the death of Harshasokha in the next article.