Canto 6: Prescribed Duties for MankindChapter 16: King Citraketu Meets the Supreme Lord

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 6.16.4

jīva uvāca

kasmiñ janmany amī mahyaḿ

pitaro mātaro 'bhavan

karmabhir bhrāmyamāṇasya



jīvaḥ uvāca — the living entity said; kasminin which; janmani — birth; amī — all those; mahyamto me; pitaraḥ — fathers; mātaraḥ — mothers; abhavan — were; karmabhiḥ — by the results of fruitive action; bhrāmyamāṇasya — who am wandering; deva-tiryak — of the demigods and the lower animals; nṛ — and of the human species; yoniṣuin the wombs.


By the mystic power of Nārada Muni, the living entity reentered his dead body for a short time and spoke in reply to Nārada Muni's request. He said: According to the results of my fruitive activities, I, the living being, transmigrate from one body to another, sometimes going to the species of the demigods, sometimes to the species of lower animals, sometimes among the vegetables, and sometimes to the human species. Therefore, in which birth were these my mother and father? No one is actually my mother and father. How can I accept these two people as my parents?


Here it is made clear that the living being enters a material body that is like a machine created by the five gross elements of material nature (earth, water, fire, air and sky) and the three subtle elements (mind, intelligence and ego). As confirmed in Bhagavad-gītā, there are two separate identities, called the inferior and superior natures, which both belong to the Supreme Personality of Godhead. According to the results of a living entity's fruitive actions, he is forced to enter the material elements in different types of bodies.

This time the living entity was supposed to have been the son of Mahārāja Citraketu and Queen Kṛtadyuti because according to the laws of nature he had entered a body made by the King and Queen. Actually, however, he was not their son. The living entity is the son of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and because he wants to enjoy this material world, the Supreme Lord gives him a chance to enter various bodies. The living entity has no true relationship with the material body he gets from his material father and mother. He is part and parcel of the Supreme Lord, but he is allowed to go through different bodies. The body created by the so-called father and mother actually has nothing to do with its so-called creators. Therefore the living entity flatly denied that Mahārāja Citraketu and his wife were his father and mother.

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His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda, Founder Ācārya of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness