Syamantakam - Story of most famous jewel in Hindu mythology

Syamantakam – Story of most famous jewel in Hindu mythology

Satrajit was a pious man. He was a devotee of Surya, the sun god. He worshiped Surya for a long time. Surya was pleased. He appeared before Satrajit and asked him to name his wish.

Satrajit was a poor man. He wanted to become rich. He asked Surya to help him to get rich.

Surya granted Satrajit’s wish. He gave Satrajit a precious stone called ‘Syamantakam’. Surya told Satrajit: “This will produce a good quantity of gold every day. Look after it well.”

‘Syamantakam’ was a bright gem, shining like the sun itself. Satrajit took it home. People who saw it thought that ‘Syamantakam’ was Surya, the sun god, himself. They feared that something bad might happen because the sun god had appeared on earth. So they went to Lord Krishna for advice.

Illustration by: Amarjeet Malik
Illustration by: Amarjeet Malik

Krishna talked to them. He tried to calm their fears. ‘Syamantakam’, he said, was only a precious stone. There was no cause for anxiety about it. Krishna also told them that Satrajit was bringing the gem for him to see.

Satrajit went to see Krishna and showed him Surya’s wonderful gift. “It is bright and wonderful,” Krishna told Satrajit. “It shines like the sun. It can produce gold every day. People will come to know about this gold you get every day. Be aware of robbers.”

Krishna added: “Perhaps it is risky for you to keep this precious stone. If you like, you can leave it here with me. I shall take care of it. You can come here every day and collect the gold it produces.”

Satrajit was unwilling to part with ‘Syamantakam’. He thought Krishna was trying to steal it.

“My lord,” he said, “I received this gift after worshipping Surya for many years. I would like to keep it myself. I think even Surya would not like me to give it away. I beg you not to ask for it.”

Krishna said: “I do not want the stone. I only wanted to help you to keep it safe. It is your property and you may take it home. You are free to do whatever you want with it.”

Satrajit was happy. He went home. He took very good care ‘Syamantakam’. Every day the bright gem produced a good quantity of gold and Satrajit became richer and richer.

Satrajit had a brother named Prasenan. This young man was very fond of rich clothes and costly jewels. One day, Prasenan was going to hunt in the jungle with a large number of people. He had put on his best clothes and costly jewels. But he thought he would look better if he wore ‘Syamantakam’ also.

Prasenan went to Satrajit and asked for the precious stone. Satrajit was fond of his brother. He loved him so much that he could not say ‘no’ to Prasenan’s request. Satrajit therefore gave ‘Syamantakam’ to Prasenan and asked him to take good care of it.

Prasenan went hunting, wearing the bright ‘Syamantakam’. The hunt was exciting. Prasenan chased a wild boar. The chase was long and Prasenan went far away his companions.

Suddenly a lion jumped at Prasenan.

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