Faith

Penance of Dhruva

Engaging in penance is a daunting task and requires determination, enormous patience to pursue the effort despite frequent falls and slips, the ability to overcome hunger, thirst, etc. by control of the senses, and so on. Moreover, the fruits of penance are not easily attained; neither is there any surety about it. Krishna says in the Gita that even after many births it is perhaps one from among the countless jivatmas who is able to attain Him. That is why it is a continuous process that is carried on through many births.

But Dhruva proves to be an exceptional case for he is able to have vision of the Lord in a matter of mere five months, pointed out Sri Ramanujam in a discourse. It is clear that God supports the child throughout in keeping with His assurance that no devotee of His will be let down or face any setback.

The child leaves for the forest with sheer faith in the words of both the mothers who endorse that the only way for him to fulfil his wishes is to seek God through penance. At the moment he has no thought of food or any other requirement; he does not even know what penance means. But it is divine will that Narada meets the child and prepares him to perform the austere penance. When the sage meets Dhruva, he notices the hurt, anger and frustration in him. He first rids Dhruva’s mind of any such ill feelings and confusion since these are deterrents to penance.

Narada is also quick to notice the child’s willpower even after he has warned him of the difficulties ahead, such as the dangers in the forest, the wild animals, and so on. The sage is delighted with such a disciple and gently touches Dhruva’s head with his auspicious hands and instructs him about the way to do penance.

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Printable version | Apr 1, 2020 10:12:01 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/society/faith/penance-of-dhruva/article30779431.ece

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