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It is generally believed that Śatānanda was the son of Gautama and Ahalyā.

But was Śatānanda born before Indra had the brief affair with Ahalyā?

How do we know Śatānanda was not the son of Indra but Gautama?


P.S. I'm looking for answers with some logical analysis, not mere reproduction of statements/verses from scripture.

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  • Just after posting the answer i felt it wasn't the right way of answering the question so i have deleted the answer.
    – Rickross
    Commented May 24, 2018 at 18:26
  • Ok. Yeah, I was looking for some concrete proof that Gautama was the biological father of Śatānanda. @Rickross Commented May 24, 2018 at 18:56
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    The fact that scripture says that he was the son of Gautama and Ahalya is how we know that he was. In fact that fact that scripture says that Shatananda existed is how we know that he existed. Commented May 25, 2018 at 0:07
  • Fair enough. But my main question has to do with chronology of events. Simple statements like 'Śatānanda was the son of Gautama and Ahalyā' even when backed with the right sources is not good enough (in this particular instance). @KeshavSrinivasan Commented May 25, 2018 at 15:28
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    @sv. Ahalyā turned into stone on the same day Indra had the brief affair with her and got her real form when Shri Ram touched her when he was going to Mithila... But when Ram reached Mithila, Satananda was already there and asked welfare of his mother...this logical analysis proves that Satananda was born before the brief affair of Indra-Ahilya...
    – YDS
    Commented May 26, 2018 at 5:26

1 Answer 1

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Shatanand was the son of Sage Gautam and Ahalya and not Indra. In Balakand Sage 51 Verse 1 and 2, he was told to be the 'eldest' son of Sage Gautam and Ahalya.

Book: Balakanda Sarga 51 Verse 1 and 2

Sloka:

तस्य तत् वचनम् श्रुत्वा विश्वामित्रस्य धीमतः |
हृष्ट रोमा महातेजाः शताअनन्दो महातपाः || १-५१-१

गौतमस्य सुतो ज्येष्ठः तपसा द्योतित प्रभः |
राम संदर्शनात् एव परम् विस्मयम् आगतः || १-५१-२

English translation:

On hearing that sentence of that intellectual sage Vishvamitra, the highly refulgent and the great ascetic Shataananda is overjoyed, and Sage Shataananda, the eldest son of Sage Gautama, and whose radiance is brightened by his own ascesis is highly amazed just on seeing Rama. [1-51-1, 2]

Hindi translation: बुद्धिमान विश्वामित्र जी के वचन सुनकर, महातेजस्वी एवं महातपस्वी शतानन्द जी के रोंगटे खड़े हो गये || १-५१-१ शतानन्द जी महर्षि गौतम के ज्येष्ठ पुत्र थे और तपः प्रभाव से प्रकाशमान हो रहे थे। वे श्री रामचन्द्र जी के दर्शन कर, बड़े विस्मित हुए || १-५१-२

These verses are just after the incident where Lord Rama freed Ahalya from her curse and then Sage Gautam and Ahalya unite and then Lord Ram along with Lakshman and Vishwamitra goto Mithila where they meet Shatanand. So, by this time Shatanand was already there, and he is being described as eldest here only, meaning that there were other son/daughter of Gautam and Ahalya too at the same time. After the Indra-Ahalya incident, Sage Gautam has left her so no point any children were born after that incident. Hence, Shatanand was born prior to that instance and is the son of Sage Gautam and Ahalya only.

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  • I am not sure Hindi translation is needed. It is an English Language site. Answers should be in English only. Commented May 25, 2018 at 9:09
  • Thanks for attempting to answer but how does your blockquote prove the point you made later that "we know after cursing Ahalya, Sage Gautama has left her...so at no point any children were born after that incident." It's totally possible all of Gautama's children were born after the Indra-Ahalya incident after Gautama and Ahalya got back together. Commented May 25, 2018 at 15:21
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    @sv, these verses are just after the incident where Lord Rama freed Ahalya from her curse and then Sage Gautam and Ahalya unite and then Lord Ram along with Lakshman and Vishwamitra goto Mithila where they meet Shatanand. So, by this time Shatanand was already there, and he is being described as eldest here only meaning that there were other son/daughter of Gautam and Ahalya too at the same time.
    – Aby
    Commented May 25, 2018 at 21:37
  • That makes sense. Please add that explanation to your answer. Commented May 26, 2018 at 18:06
  • I have updated the answer. It should now make more sense :)
    – Aby
    Commented May 26, 2018 at 21:38

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