Being insulted by sharp words spoken by the co-wife of the king, even in his presence, Prince Dhruva, though only a boy, took to severe penances in the forest. And the Lord, being satisfied by his prayer, awarded him the Dhruva planet, which is worshiped by great sages, both upward and downward.
When he was only five years old, Prince Dhruva, a great devotee and the son of Mahārāja Uttānapāda, was sitting on the lap of his father. His stepmother did not like the King's patting her stepson, so she dragged him out, saying that he could not claim to sit on the lap of the King because he was not born out of her womb. The little boy felt insulted by this act of his stepmother. Nor did his father make any protest, for he was too attached to his second wife. After this incident, Prince Dhruva went to his own mother and complained. His real mother also could not take any step against this insulting behavior, and so she wept. The boy inquired from his mother how he could sit on the royal throne of his father, and the poor queen replied that only the Lord could help him. The boy inquired where the Lord could be seen, and the queen replied that it is said that the Lord is sometimes seen by great sages in the dense forest. The child prince decided to go into the forest to perform severe penances in order to achieve his objective.
Prince Dhruva performed a stringent type of penance under the instruction of his spiritual master, Śrī Nārada Muni, who was specifically deputed for this purpose by the Personality of Godhead. Prince Dhruva was initiated by Nārada into chanting the hymn composed of eighteen letters, namely oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevāya, and Lord Vāsudeva incarnated Himself as Pṛśnigarbha, the Personality of Godhead with four hands, and awarded the prince a specific planet above the seven stars. Prince Dhruva, after achieving success in his undertakings, saw the Lord face to face, and he was satisfied that all his needs were fulfilled.
The planet awarded to Prince Dhruva Mahārāja is a fixed Vaikuṇṭha planet, installed in the material atmosphere by the will of the Supreme Lord, Vāsudeva. This planet, although within the material world, will not be annihilated at the time of devastation, but will remain fixed in its place. And because it is a Vaikuṇṭha planet never to be annihilated, it is worshiped even by the denizens of the seven stars situated below the Dhruva planet, as well as by the planets which are even above the Dhruva planet. Maharṣi Bhṛgu's planet is situated above the Dhruvaplanet.
So the Lord incarnated Himself as Pṛśnigarbha just to satisfy a pure devotee of the Lord. And Prince Dhruva achieved this perfection simply by chanting the hymn mentioned above, after being initiated by another pure devotee, Nārada. A serious personality can thus achieve the highest perfection of meeting the Lord and attain his objective simply by being guided by a pure devotee, who automatically approaches by dint of one's serious determination to meet the Lord by all means.
The great sage Maitreya wanted to describe the pious activities of the kings. Priyavrata was the first son of Svāyambhuva Manu, and Uttānapāda was the second, but the great sage Maitreya immediately began to speak of Dhruva Mahārāja, the son of Uttānapāda, because Maitreya was very eager to describe pious activities. The incidents in the life of Dhruva Mahārāja are very attractive for devotees. From his pious actions, one can learn how one can detach himself from material possessions and how one can enhance one's devotional service by severe austerities and penances. By hearing the activities of pious Dhruva, one can enhance one's faith in God and can directly connect with the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and thus one can very soon be elevated to the transcendental platform of devotional service. The example of Dhruva Mahārāja's austerities can immediately generate a feeling of devotional service in the hearts of the hearers.
Once upon a time, King Uttānapāda was patting the son of Suruci, Uttama, placing him on his lap. Dhruva Mahārāja was also trying to get on the King's lap, but the King did not very much welcome him.
While the child, Dhruva Mahārāja, was trying to get on the lap of his father, Suruci, his stepmother, became very envious of the child, and with great pride she began to speak so as to be heard by the King himself.
The King, of course, was equally affectionate toward both his sons, Uttama and Dhruva, so he had a natural inclination to take Dhruva, as well as Uttama, on his lap. But because of his favoritism towards his queen Suruci, he could not welcome Dhruva Mahārāja, despite his feelings.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:10------translation and purport).
Queen Suruci told Dhruva Mahārāja: My dear child, you do not deserve to sit on the throne or on the lap of the King. Surely you are also the son of the King, but because you did not take your birth from my womb, you are not qualified to sit on your father's lap.
Queen Suruci very proudly informed Dhruva Mahārāja that to be the King's son was not the qualification for sitting on the lap or throne of the King. Rather, this privilege was dependent on one's having taken birth from her womb. In other words, she indirectly informed Dhruva Mahārāja that although he happened to be born of the King, he was considered an illegitimate son because of his birth from the womb of the other queen.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:11------translation and purport).
The small child, Dhruva Mahārāja, was naturally affectionate toward his father, and he did not know that there was a distinction between his two mothers. This distinction was pointed out by Queen Suruci, who informed him that since he was a child he did not understand the distinction between the two queens.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:12------ purport).
Suruci was so envious of Dhruva Mahārāja that she indirectly asked him to change his body. According to her, first of all he had to die, then take his next body in her womb, and only then would it be possible for Dhruva Mahārāja to ascend the throne of his father.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:13------ purport).
The sage Maitreya continued: My dear Vidura, as a snake, when struck by a stick, breathes very heavily, Dhruva Mahārāja, having been struck by the strong words of his stepmother, began to breathe very heavily because of great anger. When he saw that his father was silent and did not protest, he immediately left the palace and went to his mother.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:14------ translation).
When Dhruva Mahārāja reached his mother, his lips were trembling in anger, and he was crying very grievously. Queen Sunīti immediately lifted her son onto her lap, while the palace residents who had heard all the harsh words of Suruci related everything in detail. Thus Sunīti also became greatly aggrieved.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:15------ translation).
The harsh words used by Suruci to her stepson were true because unless one is favored by the Supreme Personality of Godhead one cannot achieve any success in life. Man proposes, God disposes. Sunīti, the mother of Dhruva Mahārāja, agreed with her co-wife's advice that Dhruva engage himself in the worship of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Indirectly, the words of Suruci were a benediction for Dhruva Mahārāja, for because of the influence of his stepmother's words, he became a great devotee.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:19------ purport).
At this stage of his life, Dhruva Mahārāja was seeking material opulences, and his mother advised rightly that even for material opulences it is better to worship not the demigods but the Supreme Lord.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:23------ purport).
The great sage Maitreya continued: The instruction of Dhruva Mahārāja's mother, Sunīti, was actually meant for fulfilling his desired objective. Therefore, after deliberate consideration and with intelligence and fixed determination, he left his father's house.
Both the mother and the son were lamenting Dhruva Mahārāja's having been insulted by his stepmother and his father's not having taken any step on this issue. But mere lamentation is useless—one should find out the means to mitigate one's lamentation. Thus both mother and son decided to take shelter of the lotus feet of the Lord because that is the only solution to all material problems. It is indicated in this connection that Dhruva Mahārāja left his father's capital city to go to a secluded place to search out the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:24------translation and purport).
The great sage Nārada overheard this news, and understanding all the activities of Dhruva Mahārāja, he was struck with wonder. He approached Dhruva, and touching the boy's head with his all-virtuous hand, he spoke as follows.
When Dhruva Mahārāja was talking with his mother, Sunīti, of all the incidents that had taken place in the palace, Nārada was not present. Thus the question may be raised how Nārada overheard all these topics. The answer is that Nārada is trikāla-jña; he is so powerful that he can understand the past, future and present of everyone's heart, just like the Supersoul, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Therefore, after understanding the strong determination of Dhruva Mahārāja, Nārada came to help him. It may be explained in this way: The Supreme Personality of Godhead is present in everyone's heart, and as soon as He understands that a living entity is serious about entering devotional service, He sends His representative. In this way Nārada was sent to Dhruva Mahārāja. This is explained in the Caitanya-caritāmṛta. Guru-kṛṣṇa-prasāde pāya bhakti-latā-bīja: (CC.2:19:151) by the grace of the spiritual master and Kṛṣṇa, one can enter into devotional service. Because of Dhruva Mahārāja's determination, Kṛṣṇa, the Supersoul, immediately sent His representative, Nārada, to initiate him.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:25------translation and purport).
The great sage Nārada told Dhruva: My dear boy, you are only a little boy whose attachment is to sports and other frivolities. Why are you so affected by words insulting your honor?
Ordinarily if a child is rebuked as a rascal or fool, he smiles and does not take such insulting words very seriously. Similarly, if words of honor are offered, he does not appreciate them. But in the case of Dhruva Mahārāja, the kṣatriya spirit was so strong that he could not tolerate a slight insult from his stepmother which injured his kṣatriya prestige.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:27------translation and purport).
My dear Dhruva, if you feel that your sense of honor has been insulted, you still have no cause for dissatisfaction. This kind of dissatisfaction is another feature of the illusory energy; every living entity is controlled by his previous actions, and therefore there are different varieties of life for enjoying or suffering.
In the Vedas it is said that the living entity is always uncontaminated and unaffected by material association. The living entity gets different types of material bodies because of his previous fruitive actions. If, however, one understands the philosophy that as a living spirit soul he has an affinity for neither suffering nor enjoyment, then he is considered to be a liberated person. It is confirmed in Bhagavad-gītā (18.54), brahma-bhūtaḥ prasannātmā: when one is actually situated on the transcendental platform, he has nothing for which to lament and nothing for which to hanker. Nārada Ṛṣi first of all wanted to impress upon Dhruva Mahārāja that he was only a child; he should not have been affected by words of insult or honor. And if he were so developed as to understand honor and insult, then this understanding should have been applied in his own life; he should have known that honor and dishonor are both destined only by one's previous actions; therefore one should not be sorry or happy under any circumstances.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:28------translation and purport).
My dear lord, I am very impudent for not accepting your instructions, but this is not my fault. It is due to my having been born in a kṣatriya family. My stepmother, Suruci, has pierced my heart with her harsh words. Therefore your valuable instruction does not stand in my heart.
It is said that the heart or mind is just like an earthen pot; once broken, it cannot be repaired by any means. Dhruva Mahārāja gave this example to Nārada Muni. He said that his heart, having been pierced by the arrows of his stepmother's harsh words, felt so broken that nothing seemed valuable but his desire to counteract her insult. His stepmother had said that because he was born from the womb of Sunīti, a neglected queen of Mahārāja Uttānapāda, Dhruva Mahārāja was not fit to sit either on the throne or on his father's lap. In other words, according to his stepmother, he could not be declared king. Dhruva Mahārāja's determination, therefore, was to become king of a planet exalted even beyond that possessed by Lord Brahmā, the greatest of all the demigods.
Dhruva Mahārāja indirectly informed the great sage Nārada that there are four kinds of human spirit—the brahminical spirit, the kṣatriya spirit, the vaiśya spirit and the śūdra spirit. The spirit of one caste is not applicable to the members of another. The philosophical spirit enunciated by Nārada Muni might have been suitable for a brāhmaṇa spirit, but it was not suitable for a kṣatriya. Dhruva frankly admitted that he was lacking in brahminical humility and was therefore unable to accept the philosophy of Nārada Muni.
The statements of Dhruva Mahārāja indicate that unless a child is trained according to his tendency, there is no possibility of his developing his particular spirit. It was the duty of the spiritual master or teacher to observe the psychological movement of a particular boy and thus train him in a particular occupational duty. Dhruva Mahārāja, having already been trained in the kṣatriya spirit, would not accept the brahminical philosophy.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:36------translation and purport).
O learned brāhmaṇa, I want to occupy a position more exalted than any yet achieved within the three worlds by anyone, even by my fathers and grandfathers. If you will oblige, kindly advise me of an honest path to follow by which I can achieve the goal of my life.
When Dhruva Mahārāja refused to accept the brahminical instruction of Nārada Muni, naturally the next question would be what sort of instruction he wanted. So even before Nārada Muni asked, Dhruva Mahārāja expressed his heartfelt desire. His father, of course, was the emperor of the entire world, and his grandfather, Lord Brahmā, was the creator of the universe.Dhruva Mahārāja expressed his desire to possess a kingdom better than those of his father and grandfather. He frankly stated that he wanted a kingdom which had no competitor within the three worlds, namely the higher, middle and lower planetary systems. The greatest personality within this universe is Lord Brahmā, and Dhruva Mahārāja wanted a position even greater than his. He wanted to take advantage of Nārada Muni's presence because he knew very well that if Nārada Muni, the greatest devotee of Lord Kṛṣṇa, could bless him or show him the path, then certainly he would be able to occupy a more exalted position than any person within the three worlds. Thus he wanted help from Nāradajī to achieve that position. Dhruva Mahārāja wanted a position greater than that of Brahmā. This was practically an impossible proposition, but by pleasing the Supreme Personality of Godhead a devotee can achieve even the impossible.
One particular point mentioned here is that Dhruva Mahārāja wanted to occupy an exalted position not by hook or by crook, but by honest means. This indicates that if Kṛṣṇa offered him such a position, then he would accept it. That is the nature of a devotee. He may desire material gain, but he accepts it only if Kṛṣṇa offers it. Dhruva Mahārāja was sorry to refuse the instruction of Nārada Muni; therefore he requested him to be merciful to him by showing a path by which he could fulfill his mind's desires.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:37------translation and purport).
My dear lord, you are a worthy son of Lord Brahmā, and you travel, playing on your musical instrument, the vīṇā, for the welfare of the entire universe. You are like the sun, which rotates in the universe for the benefit of all living beings.
Dhruva Mahārāja, although a young child, expressed his hope that he might be offered the benediction of a kingdom which would exceed in opulence those of his father and grandfather. He also expressed his gladness that he had met such an exalted person as Nārada, whose only concern was to illuminate the world, like the sun, which rotates all over the universe only for the purpose of benefiting the inhabitants of all planets. Nārada Muni travels all over the universe for the sole purpose of performing the best welfare activity for the entire universe by teaching everyone how to become a devotee of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Thus Dhruva Mahārāja felt fully assured that Nārada Muni could fulfill his desire, even though the desire was very extraordinary.
The example of the sun is very significant. The sun is so kind that he distributes his sunshine everywhere, without consideration. Dhruva Mahārāja requested Nārada Muni to be merciful to him. He pointed out that Nārada travels all over the universe just for the purpose of doing good to all conditioned souls. He requested that Nārada Muni show his mercy by awarding him the benefit of his particular desire. Dhruva Mahārāja was strongly determined to fulfill his desire, and it was for that purpose that he had left his home and palace.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:38------translation and purport).
The great sage Nārada told Dhruva Mahārāja: The instruction given by your mother, Sunīti, to follow the path of devotional service to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is just suitable for you. You should therefore completely absorb yourself in the devotional service of the Lord.
Dhruva Mahārāja's demand was to achieve an abode even greater than Lord Brahmā's. Within this universe, Lord Brahmā is supposed to be in the most exalted position, for he is the chief of all demigods, but Dhruva Mahārāja wanted a realm beyond his. Therefore his desire was not to be fulfilled by worshiping any demigod. As described in Bhagavad-gītā, the benedictions offered by the demigods are all temporary. Therefore Nārada Muni asked Dhruva Mahārāja to follow the path recommended by his mother—to worship Kṛṣṇa, Vāsudeva. When Kṛṣṇa offers anything, it is beyond the expectation of the devotee. Both Sunīti and Nārada Muni knew that the demand of Dhruva Mahārāja was impossible for any demigod to fulfill, and therefore both of them recommended following the process of devotional service to Lord Kṛṣṇa.
Nārada Muni is referred to here as bhagavān because he can bless any person just as the Supreme Personality of Godhead can. He was very pleased with Dhruva Mahārāja, and he could have at once personally given whatever he wanted, but that is not the duty of the spiritual master. His duty is to engage the disciple in proper devotional service as prescribed in the śāstras. Kṛṣṇa was similarly present before Arjuna, and even though He could have given him all facilities for victory over the opposing party without a fight, He did not do so; instead He asked Arjuna to fight. In the same way, Nārada Muni asked Dhruva Mahārāja to undergo devotional discipline in order to achieve the desired result.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:40------translation and purport).
Oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevāya. This is the twelve-syllable mantra for worshiping Lord Kṛṣṇa. One should install the physical forms of the Lord, and with the chanting of the mantra one should offer flowers and fruits and other varieties of foodstuffs exactly according to the rules and regulations prescribed by authorities. But this should be done in consideration of place, time, and attendant conveniences and inconveniences.
Oṁ namo bhagavate vāsudevāya is known as the dvādaśākṣara-mantra. This mantra is chanted by Vaiṣṇava devotees, and it begins with praṇava, or oṁkāra. There is an injunction that those who are not brāhmaṇas cannot pronounce the praṇava mantra. But Dhruva Mahārāja was born a kṣatriya. He at once admitted before Nārada Muni that as a kṣatriya he was unable to accept Nārada's instruction of renunciation and mental equilibrium, which are the concern of a brāhmaṇa. Still, although not a brāhmaṇa but a kṣatriya, Dhruva was allowed, on the authority of Nārada, to pronounce the praṇava oṁkāra.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:54------translation and purport).
After Dhruva entered Madhuvana Forest to execute devotional service, the great sage Nārada thought it wise to go to the King to see how he was faring within the palace. When Nārada Muni approached, the King received him properly, offering him due obeisances. After being seated comfortably, Nārada began to speak.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:63------ translation).
The King replied: O best of the brāhmaṇas, I am very much addicted to my wife, and I am so fallen that I have abandoned all merciful behavior, even to my son, who is only five years old. I have banished him and his mother, even though he is a great soul and a great devotee.
In this verse there are some specific words which are to be understood very carefully. The King said that since he was very much addicted to his wife, he had lost all his mercy. That is the result of becoming too affectionate toward women. The King had two wives; the first wife was Sunīti, and the second was Suruci. He was too attached to the second wife, however, so he could not behave well with Dhruva Mahārāja. That was the cause of Dhruva's leaving home to perform austerities. Although as a father the King was affectionate toward his son, he minimized his affection for Dhruva Mahārāja because he was too much addicted to the second wife. Now he was repenting that both Dhruva Mahārāja and his mother, Sunīti, were practically banished. Dhruva Mahārāja went to the forest, and since his mother was being neglected by the King, she was therefore almost banished also. The King repented having banished his boy, for Dhruva was only five years old and a father should not banish his wife and children or neglect their maintenance. Repentant over his neglect of both Sunīti and her son, he was morose, and his face appeared withered. According to Manu-smṛti, one should never desert his wife and children. In a case where the wife and children are disobedient and do not follow the principles of home life, they are sometimes given up. But in the case of Dhruva Mahārāja this was not applicable because Dhruva was very mannerly and obedient. Moreover, he was a great devotee. Such a person is never to be neglected, yet the King was obliged to banish him. Now he was very sorry.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:65------translation and purport).
The great sage Nārada replied: My dear King, please do not he aggrieved about your son. He is well protected by the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Although you have no actual information of his influence, his reputation is already spread all over the world.
Sometimes when we hear that great sages and devotees go to the forest and engage themselves in devotional service or meditation, we become surprised: how can one live in the forest and not be taken care of by anyone? But the answer, given by a great authority, Nārada Muni, is that such persons are well protected by the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Śaraṇāgati, or surrender, means acceptance or firm belief that wherever the surrendered soul lives he is always protected by the Supreme Personality of Godhead; he is never alone or unprotected.Dhruva Mahārāja's affectionate father thought his young boy, only five years old, to be in a very precarious position in the jungle, but Nārada Muni assured him, "You do not have sufficient information about the influence of your son." Anyone who engages in devotional service, anywhere within this universe, is never unprotected.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:68------translation and purport).
My dear King, your son is very competent. He will perform activities which would he impossible even for great kings and sages. Very soon he will complete his task and come back home. You should know that he will also spread your reputation all over the world.
Here in this verse Nārada Muni has described Dhruva Mahārāja as prabhu. This word is applicable to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Sometimes the spiritual master is addressed as Prabhupāda. Prabhu means "the Supreme Personality of Godhead," and pāda means "post." According to Vaiṣṇava philosophy, the spiritual master occupies the post of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, or in other words he is the bona fide representative of the Supreme Lord. Dhruva Mahārāja is also described here as prabhu because he is an ācārya of the Vaiṣṇava school. Another meaning of prabhu is "master of the senses," just like the word svāmī. Another significant word is suduṣkaram, "very difficult to perform." What was the task that Dhruva Mahārāja undertook? The most difficult task in life is to satisfy the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and Dhruva Mahārāja would be able to do that. We must remember that Dhruva Mahārāja was not fickle; he was determined to execute his service and then come back.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:69------translation and purport).
In the second month Dhruva Mahārāja ate only every six days, and for his eatables he took dry grass and leaves. Thus he continued his worship.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:73------ translation).
In the fourth month Dhruva Mahārāja became a complete master of the breathing exercise, and thus he inhaled air only every twelfth day. In this way he became completely fixed in his position and worshiped the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:75------ translation).
By the fifth month, Mahārāja Dhruva, the son of the King, had controlled his breathing so perfectly that he was able to stand on only one leg, just as a column stands, without motion, and concentrate his mind fully on the Parabrahman.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:76------ translation).
When Dhruva Mahārāja thus captured the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is the refuge of the total material creation and who is the master of all living entities, the three worlds began to tremble.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:78------ translation).
As Dhruva Mahārāja, the King's son, kept himself steadily standing on one leg, the pressure of his big toe pushed down half the earth, just as an elephant being carried on a boat rocks the boat left and right with his every step.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:79------ translation).
When Dhruva Mahārāja became practically one in heaviness with Lord Viṣṇu, the total consciousness, due to his fully concentrating, and closing all the holes of his body, the total universal breathing became choked up, and all the great demigods in all the planetary systems felt suffocated and thus took shelter of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:80------ translation).
The demigods said: Dear Lord, You are the refuge of all moving and nonmoving living entities. We feel all living entities to be suffocating, their breathing processes choked up. We have never experienced such a thing. Since You are the ultimate shelter of all surrendered souls, we have therefore approached You; kindly save us from this danger.
Dhruva Mahārāja's influence, attained by executing devotional service unto the Lord, was felt even by the demigods, who had never before experienced such a situation. Because of Dhruva Mahārāja's controlling his breathing, the entire universal breathing process was choked.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:8:81------ translation and purport).
The great sage Maitreya told Vidura: When the demigods were thus reassured by the Personality of Godhead, they were freed from all fears, and after offering their obeisances, they returned to their heavenly planets. Then the Lord, who is nondifferent from the Sahasraśīrṣā incarnation, got on the back of Garuḍa, who carried Him to the Madhuvana Forest to see His servant Dhruva.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:9:1------ translation).
The form of the Lord, which was brilliant like lightning and in which Dhruva Mahārāja, in his mature yogic process, was fully absorbed in meditation, all of a sudden disappeared. Thus Dhruva was perturbed, and his meditation broke. But as soon as he opened his eyes he saw the Supreme Personality of Godhead personally present, just as he had been seeing the Lord in his heart.
Because of his mature position in yogic meditation, Dhruva Mahārāja was constantly observing the form of the Personality of Godhead within his heart, but all of a sudden, when the Supreme Personality disappeared from his heart, he thought that he had lost Him. Dhruva Mahārāja was perturbed, but upon opening his eyes and breaking his meditation he saw the same form of the Lord before him.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:9:2------ translation and purport).
When Dhruva Mahārāja saw his Lord just in front of him, he was greatly agitated and offered Him obeisances and respect. He fell flat before Him like a rod and became absorbed in love of Godhead. Dhruva Mahārāja, in ecstasy, looked upon the Lord as if he were drinking the Lord with his eyes, kissing the lotus feet of the Lord with his mouth, and embracing the Lord with his arms.
Naturally, when Dhruva Mahārāja personally saw the Supreme Personality of Godhead face to face, he was very much agitated in awe and respect, and it appeared as if he were drinking the entire body of the Lord with his eyes. The devotee's love for the Supreme Personality of Godhead is so intense that he wants to kiss the lotus feet of the Lord constantly, and he wants to touch the tips of the toes of the Lord and constantly embrace His lotus feet. All these features of Dhruva Mahārāja's bodily expression indicate that upon seeing the Lord face to face he developed the eight kinds of transcendental ecstasy in his body.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:9:3------ translation and purport).
Although Dhruva Mahārāja was a small boy, he wanted to offer prayers to the Supreme Personality of Godhead in suitable language. But because he was inexperienced, he could not adjust himself immediately. The Supreme Personality of Godhead, being situated in everyone's heart, could understand Dhruva Mahārāja's awkward position. Out of His causeless mercy He touched His conchshell to the forehead of Dhruva Mahārāja, who stood before Him with folded hands.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:9:4------ translation).
Dhruva Mahārāja said: My dear Lord, You are all-powerful. After entering within me, You have enlivened all my sleeping senses—my hands, legs, ears, touch sensation, life force and especially my power of speech. Let me offer my respectful obeisances unto You.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:9:6------ translation).
The Personality of Godhead said: My dear Dhruva, son of the King, you have executed pious vows, and I also know the desire within your heart. Although your desire is very ambitious and very difficult to fulfill, I shall favor you with its fulfillment. All good fortune unto you.
The Lord is so merciful to His devotee that He immediately said to Dhruva Mahārāja, "Let there be all good fortune for you." The fact is that Dhruva Mahārāja was very much afraid in his mind, for he had aspired after material benefit in discharging his devotional service and this was hampering him from reaching the stage of love of God. In the Bhagavad-gītā (2.44) it is said, bhogaiśvarya-prasaktānām: those who are addicted to material pleasure cannot be attracted to devotional service. It was true that at heart Dhruva Mahārāja wanted a kingdom that would be far better than Brahmaloka. This was a natural desire for a kṣatriya. He was also only five years old, and in his childish way he desired to have a kingdom far greater than his father's, grandfather's or great-grandfather's. His father, Uttānapāda, was the son of Manu, and Manu was the son of Lord Brahmā. Dhruva wanted to excel all these great family members. The Lord knew Dhruva Mahārāja's childish ambition, but how was it possible to offer Dhruva a position more exalted than Lord Brahmā's?
The Lord assured Dhruva Mahārāja that Dhruva would not be bereft of the Lord's love. He encouraged Dhruva not to be worried that he childishly had material desires and at the same time had the pure aspiration to be a great devotee. Generally, the Lord does not award a pure devotee material opulence, even though he may desire it. But Dhruva Mahārāja's case was different. The Lord knew that he was such a great devotee that in spite of having material opulence he would never be deviated from love of God. This example illustrates that a highly qualified devotee can have the facility of material enjoyment and at the same time execute love of God. This, however, was a special case for Dhruva Mahārāja.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:9:19------ translation and purport).
The Supreme Personality of Godhead continued: My dear Dhruva, I shall award you the glowing planet known as the polestar, which will continue to exist even after the dissolution at the end of the millennium. No one has ever ruled this planet, which is surrounded by all the solar systems, planets and stars. All the luminaries in the sky circumambulate this planet, just as bulls tread around a central pole for the purpose of crushing grains. Keeping the polestar to their right, all the stars inhabited by the great sages like Dharma, Agni, Kaśyapa and Śukra circumambulate this planet, which continues to exist even after the dissolution of all others.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:9:20-21------ translation).
Despite having achieved the desired result of his determination by worshiping the lotus feet of the Lord, Dhruva Mahārāja was not very pleased. Thus he returned to his home.
By worshiping the lotus feet of the Lord in devotional service as instructed by Nārada Muni, Dhruva Mahārāja achieved the desired result. His desire was to get a very exalted position, excelling that of his father, grandfather and great-grandfather, and although it was a somewhat childish determination because Dhruva Mahārāja was nothing but a small child, Lord Viṣṇu, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is so kind and merciful that He fulfilled Dhruva's desire. Dhruva Mahārāja wanted a residence more exalted than any ever occupied by anyone else in his family. Therefore he was offered the planet in which the Lord personally resides, and his determination was completely satisfied. Still, when Dhruva Mahārāja returned home he was not very much pleased, for although in pure devotional service there is no demand from the Lord, because of his childish nature he had demanded something. Thus although the Lord also fulfilled his desire, he was not very pleased. Rather, he was ashamed that he had demanded something from the Lord, for he should not have done this.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:9:27------ translation).
Upon seeing Dhruva Mahārāja approaching the neighboring small forest, King Uttānapāda with great haste got down from his chariot. He had been very anxious for a long time to see his son Dhruva, and therefore with great love and affection he went forward to embrace his long-lost boy. Breathing very heavily, the King embraced him with both arms. But Dhruva Mahārāja was not the same as before; he was completely sanctified by spiritual advancement due to having been touched by the lotus feet of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:9:42-43------ translation).
Reunion with Dhruva Mahārāja fulfilled King Uttānapāda's long-cherished desire, and for this reason he smelled Dhruva's head again and again and bathed him with torrents of very cold tears.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:9:44------ translation).
Then Dhruva Mahārāja, the foremost of all nobles, first of all offered his obeisances at the feet of his father and was honored by his father with various questions. He then bowed his head at the feet of his two mothers.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:9:45------ translation).
Suruci, the younger mother of Dhruva Mahārāja, seeing that the innocent boy had fallen at her feet, immediately picked him up, embracing him with her hands, and with tears of feeling she blessed him with the words, "My dear boy, long may you live!"
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:9:46------ translation).
The two brothers Uttama and Dhruva Mahārāja also exchanged their tears. They were overwhelmed by the ecstasy of love and affection, and when they embraced one another, the hair on their bodies stood up.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:9:48------ translation).
Sunīti, the real mother of Dhruva Mahārāja, embraced the tender body of her son, who was dearer to her than her own life, and thus forgot all material grief, for she was very pleased.
(Srimad Bhagavatam------4:9:49------ translation).