Monday, August 15, 2005

Where do I begin ?

"Dear Ganesha .... Lead well ....this army of words"

Where do I begin..... As I start typing, my mind oscillates for words .... thoughts from "The Ramayana" that I had read three mornings before, comes to my mind.... There are subtle finer points in this epic that make us think of certain basic principles of Life.

Philosophy apart, I had heard that reading the Ramayana during the malayalam month of Karkadakam [Aani/Aadi in tamil - July / Aug) brings a lot of good, be it to one's thoughts or deeds. Now what stops you from doing this ? - "oh come on ....I know the story of the Ramayana...." - however when I started reading the Valmiki version of bound text, I realized that there is more to it than meets the eye. This is the same we presume of Life sometimes - "Yeah I know....I know.... " - we tell ourselves - whereas sometimes we really do not know or understand certain situations or circumstances in Life, but tend not to show it out that way for various reasons whatsoever.

Subtle nuances....

Why does Rama kill Vaali hiding from the back instead of engaging in battle one-to-one ? Vaali has a boon granted from the Gods that anyone who fights Vaali instantly loses half of his strength. Therefore, no one can win him in a one-to-one fight. This explains why Rama shoots Vaali from the back.

Though Dasaratha loves all his three wives (Sumitra, Kausalya, Kaikeyi) equally - he gives into granting boons to Kaikeyi when he is in bed with her due to his sheer lust for her and ends up repenting later in life. Kaikeyi begets these boons when she saves Dasaratha's life in a battle long ago and Dasaratha promises her two boons. Capturing him in her web of lust, Kaikeyi asks him for one wish and two boons and threatens to commit suicide when Dasaratha disagrees with her boons initially. Eventually Dasaratha gives in to her.

"Its better to prevent and prepare than repent and repair"

In the Ramayana - Vishnu is born as Rama and Adisesha (vishnu's serpent) is born as Lakshmana - whereas in the Mahabharata - Vishnu is born as Krishna and Adisesha is Balarama, Krishna's elder brother. The contrast therefore being that Lakshmana serves Rama whereas Krishna serves Balarama. The balance is maintained.

On his return from Lanka - when Hanuman is asked about his mission to Lanka - neither the pride in Hanuman nor the ego surfaces - He utters only two words "Kanden Seethaiyai" which conveys a lot of meaning to Rama. He does not mention to the vanaraas about the personal dialogues between him, Sita and Rama. This says a lot about the discipline, respect and privacy that he maintains in his heart for Rama.

.... and in mythology .....there are such countless small nuances which convey big meanings.

1 comment:

Srividya said...

Whoah! I have never actually read the Ramayan, only heard the story and watched it on TV. Reading your post makes me want to read the epic and get to know the more intricate details. Keep writing!