Dictionaries | References


See also:  ṚCĪKA I , ṚCĪKA II , ṚCĪKA III , ऋचीक , ऋचीक II.
A famous sage.
1) Genealogy.
From Viṣṇu were descended in the following order-Brahmā-Bhṛgu-Cyavana-Ūrva-Ṛcīka. Ṛcīka was the father of Jamadagni and grandfather of Paraśurāma.
2) Ṛcīka's marriage.
Gādhi, a king of the Lunar dynasty had a daughter, Satyavatī. Ṛcīka wished to marry this beautiful princess. Gādhi agreed to give his daughter in marriage to the sage if he gave 1,000 horses with black ears. Ṛcīka offered worship to Varuṇa to help him in the matter. Varuṇa was pleased and a thousand horses rose up from the river Gaṅgā. Ṛcīka married Satyavatī after giving the horses. Afterwards both of them went and settled down in the forest.
3) Birth of Jamadagni.
One day Satyavatī made a request to Ṛcīka that she should have a son. Besides, she requested him that her mother should be blessed with a son, so that she might have a brother. Ṛcīka performed a “homa” and after that he made two balls of rice and gave them to Satyavatī. He advised her to eat one of them and to give the other to her mother. Ṛcīka had put “Brahmatejas” (brilliance of Brahmins) in the first riceball and “Kṣātratejas” (brilliance of Kṣatriyas) in the other. When Satyavatī and her mother ate the riceballs, it so happened that the rice-ball intended for her mother was eaten by Satyavatī and the one intended for Satyavatī was eaten by the mother. Later Ṛcīka came to know of this mistake. In due course, Satyavatī and her mother gave birth to sons, Satyavatī's son was named Viśvāmitra. [Brahmāṇḍa Purāṇa, Chapter 57].
4) Other sons of Ṛcīka.
After this three more sons were born to Ṛcīka. The eldest of them was named Śunaḥpuccha, the second was named Śunaśśepha and the third, Śunolāṅgūla.
5) The sale of Śunaśśepha.
Once king Ambarīṣa started a yāga. Indra who was jealous of him, stole the sacrificial cow. Since it was an evil omen, the priest advised Ambarīṣa that either the lost cow or a human being in its place must be obtained to complete the yāga. In spite of searches made in many places, the cow could not be traced. At last Ambarīṣa's men met Ṛcīka who was doing tapas on Bhṛgutuṅga. Ṛcīka sold his second son, Śunaśśepha to Aṁbarīṣa in exchange for the price of 100,000 cows. The king took Śunaśśepha with him and came to Puṣkara tīrtha. There they happened to meet Viśvāmitra. Śunaśśepha complained to Viśvāmitra and lamented over his ill-fate. Viśvāmitra wished to save him and to send one of his own sons in his place with Ambarīṣa. But none of his sons was willing to oblige. Viśvāmitra cursed them and turned them into eaters of human flesh. Then he turned to Śunaśśepha and said:-- “When you stand ready to be sacrificed near the altar, offer your prayers to Agni. If you do so, you will attain siddhi.” (salvation or mokṣa). He also taught him two songs of praise to Agni. While standing at the altar ready to be sacrificed Sunaś epha recited the two songs of praise. Indra and the other gods appeared and after saving Śunaśśepha rewarded Ambarīṣa for his yāga. [Vālmīki Ramāyaṇa, Bālakāṇḍa, 62nd Sarga].
6) Ṛcīka and the Vaiṣṇava bow.
Once Viśvakarmā made two mighty bows. One of them was taken by Śiva to burn the Tripuras. That bow is known as “Śaivacāpa”. The other bow was given to Viṣṇu. It is called “Vaiṣṇavacāpa”. The Devas wished to see a trial of strength between Śiva and Viṣṇu. They prompted Brahmā to bring about such a conflict. Brahmā succeeded in causing a quarrel between Śiva and Viṣṇu. A fight began between Śiva and Viṣṇu. Both the Śaivacāpa and Vaiṣṇavacāpa went into action. But Śiva was defeated. After that, Siva gave his bow to Devarāta, king of Videha. By inheritance it came into the hands of king Janaka, the father of Śītā. It was this bow which was broken by Śrī Rāma at the time of Sītā's Svayaṁvara. After the battle with Śiva, Viṣṇu gave his bow to Ṛcīka who, in turn gave it to Jamadagni. Jamadagni presented it to his son Paraśurāma. It was with this Vaiṣṇavacāpa that Paraśurāma confronted Śrī Rāma who was returning after Sītā's Svayaṁvara. [Rāmāyaṇa, Bālakāṇḍa, 75th Sarga].
7) Other details.
(i) Ṛcīka was given 1,000 white horses with black ears which could run fast, by Gādhi as dowry. Varuṇa presented these horses on the bank of the river Gaṅgā. The place in Gaṅgā where the horses rose up, came to be called “Aśvatīrtha”. Gādhi gave Satyavatī to Ṛcīka at the place called ‘Kanyākubja’. [M.B. Araṇya Parva, Chapter 115].
(ii) [Mahābhārata, Aśvamedhika Parva, Chapter 29, Verse 23] says that Ṛcīka once tried to stop Paraśurāma from killing Kṣatriyas.
(iii) Once Dyutimān, King of Sālva, presented a tract of land to Ṛcīka. [M.B. Anuśāsana Parva, Chapter 137, Verse 28].
(iv) Ṛcīka attained Vaikuṇṭha and his wife Satyavatī accompanied him in her earthly body. It is said that after it, Satyavatī transformed herself into a river under the name “Kauśikī” and began to flow in north India. [Vālmīki Rāmāyaṇa, Bālakāṇḍa, 34th Sarga].

Comments | अभिप्राय

Comments written here will be public after appropriate moderation.
Like us on Facebook to send us a private message.