Kartaveeryarjuna, who is Kartaveeryarjuna? Why he is also known as Sahasra Arjuna? Importance of Kartaveeryarjuna in Hindu Scriptures..
Kartaveeryarjuna in the Haihaya Vamsha from the lineage of Yadu was an illustrious and powerful Chakravarti who pleased Indra and obtained thousand mighty hands. The origin of Haihava Vamsha was interesting: Once Surya Deva’s son Revanta rode on the Celestial Horse named ‘Ucchaishwara’ which was manifested in the course of ‘Kshira Samudra Mathana’ or the churning of the Ocean of Milk.
As Revanta reached Vaikuntha, Devi Lakshmi recognised the co-born horse and was engrossed in her thoughts even as she was in intimate conversation with Lord Vishnu. The latter did not like the interference and her thoughts and hence gave a ‘shaap’ (curse) that she would become a mare as she was lost in indifference to him.
Lakshmi Devi requested her companion Parvati to persuade Vishnu to become a horse. The animal forms of Lakshmi and Vishnu gave birth to a male child in the forest and the boy was picked up by King Yayati’s son Turvasu (Hari Varma) who was performing Tapasya for several years for a son of celebrity; that boy was named Eka Vira who later became the King.
Eka Vira fell in love with Princess Ekavali the daughter of King Raibhya but a demon Kalaketu kidnapped her and taken away to Patala; the companion of the Princess called Yasovati however knew a Seed Mantra which she learnt from Dattareya by means of which Eka Vira reached Patala, killed Kalaketu and married the Princess.
The son of Eka Vira and Ekavali was Kartaveeryarjuna who became the famed and undisputed Chakravarti eventually.His valour was such that in an encounter with Ravanasura the villian of Ramayana subdued and arrested the latter’s Ten-Heads under his mighty arms and released him only when Maharshi Pulastya made an appeal for mercy!
The Chakravarti was no doubt famed universally as he ruled with Dharma as his cardinal principle but in due course of time, he became too vainglorious and over-domineering.
Once he gifted a huge forest to Agni Deva and the latter comsumed it to satisfy his pleasure; but unfortunately for Agni and the Chakravarti, Maharshi Vasishta’s Ashram too was burnt off and the Maharshi gave a ‘shaap’to Karta-veeryarjuna that soon enough Vishnu’s incarnation as Parashurama would appear and the over-inflated Chakravati would be destroyed , especially because the latter came to ill-treat and even torment Rishis, Brahmanas and the majority of his Subjects. Indeed the curse took shape and Parashurama was born.
On one occasion, Kartaveerya visited the Ashram of Maharshi Jamadagni the father of Paraush Rama when the latter was away in Tapasya. As the King and his army landed at the Ashram, Jamadagni provided hospitality an served nice food to the King and the Army, thanks to the Celestial Cow Kamadhenu was present there in the Ashram serving food to the students of Jamadagni. The King claimed the Cow as the Ashram was in the control of the Kingdom.
As an altercation between the Maharshi and the King followed, the King went back but sent his army to overpower the Maharshi and the Kamadhenu and in the encounted that followeed, Jamadagni was killed and the Celestial Cow flew off to Swarga. On return from Tapasya., Parashurama learnt of his father’s cold-blooded murder and in extreme anguish and anger attacked Kartaveerya and killed him.
Not satisfied still, Parashurama invaded the Kings of the nook and corner of Bharat in as many as tewnty one battles and uprooted the entire clan of Kshatriyas who all by that time earned the disrepute and hatred of the virtuous Subjects of the respective Kingdoms.