Episode # 111 – Does having a “Putra” (Son) add “Shreyas” to our “Atman”? Sage Jada-Bharata explains!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the significance of the “Atman” and how different it is from the “Deham”, which is nothing but the physical body. We’ve seen Sage Bharata continuing further to highlight upon which actually gives “Shreyas” or significance to the “Atman”. He explains the mentality of some people who repeatedly assert that having a son is the ultimate significance of taking birth in this world! Does having a son add to the significance of our “Atman”? Or, some people have this attitude that having a girl child (also referred to as “Seemantha Puthri” if a daughter is born as the first child) would bring enormous prosperity, etc. Thus, does having a daughter add to the significance of our “Atman”? We’ve concluded yesterday’s episode with these two important questions and we shall witness the answers for the same today. 

When we have a son (“Putra”) in our family, we immediately associate the son to that person who can carry forward all the property of the family, isn’t it? In fact, the shabdha called “Putra” has a very interesting split as follows: “Punnaamno narakaath traayatethi putraha”. It is believed that if a couple doesn’t have a “Putra”, there is a “Naraka Lokha” called “Puthu”, into which the couple would go. We’ve not witnessed this “Naraka Lokha” in our previous episodes wherein we had discussed a variety of “Naraka Lokhas”. Thus, if a couple give birth to a “Putra”, it is believed that he would prevent his parents from entering into the “Naraka Lokha” called “Puthu”. Immediately we would have a doubt here – If we have a daughter, or if some of us do not have children at all, would we reach this “Naraka Lokha” called “Puthu”? The answer to this is very simple – All these “Naraka Lokhas” is for ordinary people who do not even have a tinch of spiritual knowledge in them. These are not mentioned for spiritually advanced “Sharanagatas”. Thus, if we are “Sharanagatas”, we need not worry about all these narratives and philosophies of the “Naraka Lokhas”. This is the reason we emphasize and re-emphasize the point that we’ve to surrender to Bhagawan’s divine lotus feet and execute our “Karma” with utmost devotion towards Him. Once we do this, we needn’t worry about any of the above-mentioned “Naraka-Lokhas”. 

Thus moving on with Sage Jada-Bharata’s narrative, he clearly explains to King Rahuguna that having a “Putra” is not going to give any sort of “Shreyas” to the “Atman”. We would have a question as to why Sage Jada-Bharata is telling us this. Even if we see today’s scenario – Once we have a son at our home, we would shower all our affection towards him, put him into the best school, college, etc. and spend truckloads of money on his education for the next 15-20 years. Finally the son would come and tell us thus, “Oh! You’ve given me an outdated education and which is not as per my interest! I wanted to do some course, and you forced me into something else, which is not of my interest! You’ve spoilt my life completely!” At this time we would also think – “Oh! This is much worse than going into the “Putu” Naraka Lokha itself!” 🙂 Such is the case with the “Putra” today, and this is exactly what Sage Jada-Bharata is narrating here. He’s clearly emphasizing the point that how much ever we serve our son or daughter, nobody is going to be 100% satisfied, and we’re going to be blamed for every small thing here and there. Hence, the point here is that we shouldn’t get too attached towards our son or daughter beyond a point. 

Of course, I’m not saying that we should refrain from our duties towards our children. We should make sure that we give our best to our children. But the point here is to emphasize the thin line of difference between performing our duties and getting carried away with the welfare of our children. This is exactly what Bhagawan Krishna also emphasizes in His Bhagawad Gita too – He gives a detailed accord on “detachment” and how to lead a family life, yet be detached. This is an important lesson for all of us to learn in today’s scenario too. Hence for today, let us understand this point and let us wait till the next epiosde to continue with this point of discussion further! Stay tuned! 🙂 


Published by Dr. Jeayaram

Holds a PhD in Management Psychology from Universite Paris Saclay, Paris, France. Also an Asst. Professor of Human Resources management at Bharatidhasan Institute of Management (BIM) Trichy, India A professional South Indian classical musician (singer) performing concerts. Through this blog, I'm trying to bring out the richness of Indian culture & values and I request your support and feedbacks in making this humble effort a success!!

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