Interesting Shloka in the Srimadramayanam

I’m recently into the habit of reading the Srimadramayanam, and this is one of the many interesting shlokas i came across.

” All said and done, Rama had to leave for exile along with Sita Peratti, thus leaving the whole of Ayodhya in gloom. The entire royalty, ministry was in a flood of tears. Just before Rama, Sita and Lakshmana were to depart, Lakshmana goes to his mother Sumithra to seek her blessings. One would expect Sumithra to be totally shattered. Her son, who almost 27 years, in his youth had to part with his family, the life of  luxury and endure the hardships of a hermit’s routine.

On the contrary Sumithra is calm, embraces her son and blesses. She is in fact glad to be sending her son with Rama and Sita, so that he may serve them. Sumithra, is character that symbolises a Jnanin, in the Srimadramayanam. Valmiki Bhagavan portrays her like silently flowing river of knowledge. She blesses her son very surprisingly thus:

||Ramam dasharatham Vidhi, Mam Vidhi Janakathmajam||

||Ayodhyam Ataveem Vidhi, Gacha Tata Yatha Sukham||

Lakshmana-and-Sumithra

Outwardly, this might mean very obviously thus:”think (Vidhi) of Rama as none other than Dasharatha, find me(Mam) your mother, in Sita. The forest(Ataveem) shall be your land of luxury(Ayodhya). May all goodness be yours.”

However, there is bigger vykhyana to this shloka, by our poorvacharyas. Dasha means bird. Ratha is chariot. Thus Dasahratha refers to the One who has a bird (the kind of birds is Garuda) for His chariot, is Garuda Gamana, the Lord Srimanarayana Himself. Ma means Mother, referring to Thayar, that is Sita Devi. So what Sumithra actually advocates Lakshmana is,” Rama is none other than Emperuman and Sita is none other than Thayar. Where they reside, the kshetra or the divya desa itself is the place of bliss and by service to the Lord, Thayar, and all His devotees alone, may all happiness come to a  jivan.”

Emperumanar Thiruvadigale sharanam

Azhwar Thiruvadigale sharanam

Thayar thiruvadigale sharanam

Emperuman Thiruvadigale Sharanam

Charama Shlokam

The SrimadBhagavdgeetha is a voluminous collection and the essence of it lies in the shloka that follows, which lies in the 18th Canto and is celebrated as the Charama Shloka by Sri Vaishnavas.

||Sarva dharaman parityajya mamekam sharanam Vrja|

Aham tva sarvapapebhyo mokshayishyami ma shuchaha||

Meaning: Part will all forms of dharma and take sole surrender in Me and I will salvade you of every sin,worry not.

These are the golden words emanating  from the lotus mouth of Sri Krishna. However it is seemingly tough to understand why this shloka, which seems to motivate one against dharma, is so worth the attention it garners.

Everything has its owm way of being said, and here “sarva dharman parityajya” though means part with every dharma,  implies part with the interest in the fruits of dharma, righteousness. As the vedas point out, “Na karmana na prajaya dhanena, tyagenekena amrtatva manashuhu” : Salvation is achieved not through deeds, issues, wealth but through sacrifice of interest. Nyasa or Sanyasa does not mean saffron loins. It is just discharging one’s duties without expectation of fruit. Every act has been mentioned to bear its own result, but when we simply do it because it is right and not because its results are good, this sanyasa is achieved. Let’s understand it this way, we make tirukannaamudu, add surplus amounts of raisins, cashews, almonds, dates and ghee and we prepare this not for the palate, but for the Lord 🙂 The day we start doing this, we get one certain check of ourselves not being interested in the results and thus adhering to “karmanya vadhikarasthe ma phaleshu kadachana”:)

Also by saying part with righteousness, Kannan  highlights the intellect to differentiate and prioritise between Svadharma ( righteousness of one’s own concern) and visesha dharma ( general righteousness).

It is essential to quote Parashar Bhattar. Once in SriRangam, Bhattar was witnessing the porappadu or uthsavam of the Lord and one of His disciples reminded, “Swami, it is time for sandhavandanam” to which Bhattar replied, ” I’m here dancing, singing and celebrating our Rangan, with paramabhagavathas, Chitragupta will not mind me abstaining sandhyavandanam for once.”

But this does not mean, we stop sandhyavandanam or tirvaradhanam or any other nithyanusandhanams for ages together 🙂 That again calls for the intellect to discriminate between Svadharma and Vishesha Dharma, and this intellect will arise by more and more satsangas 🙂

“Mamekam Saranam Vraja” Here the catch is ananyagathithvam, that is He is not our refuge, but He is our only refuge. Having take total surrender in Him, one must summon absolute faith in Emperuman, this faith Mahavishwasa, must  be with us not during the best of times, but when goes hopeless to it’s extreme. Githacharyan assures us by saying, “I shall take care of thou” so keeping that in mind and not stumbling to situations is an essential in Sharanagathi.

“Ma Shuchaha” : Before Sharanagathi, we must actually feel bad that we have wasted so much of the precious janma of a man, (Durlabham Manusham janmam) and this worry vanishes after Sharanagathi as the Lord, the vanquisher of all glum, has been reached by us.

This is a compilation of adiyen’s  treasured listenings of various discourses and harikathas and a humble samarpanam at His Lotus feet.

Emperumanar Thiruvadigale sharanam

Azhwar Thiruvadigale Sharanam

Thayar Thiruvadigale sharanam

Emperuman Thiruvadigale Sharanam

After the message is written….

I thought I’ll conclude, with Rukmini Kalayanam but in very brief.

The Sidha Pursha, takes this message to Dwaraka, and he travels through his mind, appears in the Krsna’s court and informs Krishna of Rukmini and her message

Brahmana UvAcha
“||ithyEthE guhya sandEshA yadudEva mayA hruthA : | vimrushya karthum yachhAthra kriyathAm thadanantharam ||”

“These are the secret messages brought by me, O Sri Krishna, considering them, whatever is worth doing in this connection may be done without delay.”

Krsna, with the consent of His parents and elder brother Balarama, leaves for Kundina Pura, and meets Bheeshmakar, who wants Krsna as his son in law. In the Durgna Mandiram, right in front of all the the Rajas, kings, The Raja of all Rajas, Emperor of emperors, Sri Rangaraja, Sri Devaraja, Sri Varadarja, Sri Soundaraja, Sri Govindaraja as He is known better, elopes with Rukmini. War follows, where Rukmi and all other rulers return disgraced by Balarama and krsna. In Dwarka, in the thousand pillared mantapam architectured by Vishwakara, the marriage ceremony of the every married Rukmini-Krsna takes place, Bheeshmakar happily sends huge gifts and Devaki and Vasudeva fondly receive  their daughter in Law and welcome her into the family.

Rukimini-Krsna hapy, Devaki- Vaudeva happy, Bheeshmakar happy, Balarama-revathi happy, sidha pursha happy, residents of Dwarka and Kundinapura happy ( we who listen this divine tale are happy, imagine people who have actually witnessed and been part of the sublime celebration), and so may all Bhagawathas be happy and be ever receive the blessings of the divine couple and enjoy the celebration of the Lord, every moment and every breath . So goes the phala shruthi by Shukabrahma maharshi, that listeners of Rukmini Kalyanam will get married soon, may we all too get married soon, yes and by marriage i mean the marriage of the soul, not the body. May all of us reach to Emperuman.

Shloka 7

“||yasyAngri pankajarajas napanam mahAnthO vAjhchanthi umApathi rivAatmathamO apahathyai | yarhyambujAksha na labhEya bhavath prasAdam jahyAmasoon vrathakrushAn shatha janmabhi: yAth ||”

“If however I do not secure Your grace, O lotus eyed Lord – a bath in the dust of whose lotus-feet great souls like Lord Siva seek to obtain for dispelling their darkness-I shall lay down my life, (already) withered through fasting, (each time I am rebord )in the hope that the grace may be secured (even) through (say) a hundred births”

This shows the grit that Rukmini had, and we must have to reach to the Lord. There is no peace without Him, He is in fact the ideal peace maker and the pace maker, not the machine that is fitted into us. There is always stubbornness in love, and in this undiluted infinite and divine form of love, there is absolute craving to reach to the Lord, no matter what it takes to make it there.

Shloka 6

“||antha : purAntharachareem anihathya bandhoon tvA mudvahE kathamithi pravadAmupAyam | pOrvEdhyu rasthi mahathE kuladEvi yAthrA yasyAm bahir navavadhOr girijAm upEyAth ||”
“If You urge, “How can I marry you without killing your relations, living as you do within the four walls of the gynaeceus?”, I tell You beforehand the means. On the eve of marriage a grand processing will be taken out to Goddess Ambika (our family deity), in which the young bride has to go out to see Goddess Parvati.”

An interesting shloka where the girl herself becalls the groom to elope with her and a special mention of Parvati devi (ambika).

The Manu Smrti, clearly dictates that a girl may not chose her spouse without the permission of an elder, her father. But it does also mention that in case her father is not in a position to do this ( due to verious circumstances) her eldest brother may decide her life. Now, it gives another very important exception, if the girl’s father is not able to discharge this duty, and the immediate authority to dishcarge this duty ( like the eldest brother) is not fit to take the decision of the girl’s life, she may herself decide her partner. Rukmini does this, much with the agreement of her father, and not one of her brothers had the flare for dharma.

Rukmini calls Parvati devi as ambika. This was the name given Parvati, by none other than Emperuman Himself, when He did he Krsnavatharam and Parvati does the kainkaryam ( service) of transplanting the foetus of balarama from Devaki to Rohini and herself being born the daughter of Yashoda and Nanda. The Lord gives her a list of names ” Durgeti Bhadrakaleethi Vijaya Vaishnaveethi cha Sharada ambike ishani…” thayar always wants of the Lord to do one or the other anugraham to the bhakthas. Here Rukmini, inderectly reminds of Krsna that he has to give darshan to Durga Devi, as a couple with Rukmini. Smt. Prema Panduran, often quotes jovially, that the fear of the sister in law did not spare sakshat Sri Mahalakshmi 🙂 🙂

Shloka 5

“||shvObhA vinitvamajithOdvahanE vidarbhAn guptha : samEthya pruthanApathibhI : pareetha: :
nirmathya chaidhyam agadhEndra balam prasahya mAM rAkshasEna vidhinOdvaha veerya shulkAm ||”
“Duly reaching Vidarba incognito at a time when the marriage is going to take place the following day, O invincible Lord and surrounded by the generals of Your army and completely crushing the forces of Sisupala and Jarasandha, marry me perforce according to the system prevalent among the Raksasas, winning me as a prize of valour.”

Again, a further immense form of Saranagathi, where the Lord has to rescue and uplift the soul, one of the best forms of Siddhopayam and marajarakishora nyayam. Please refer the internet for the meaning of these three words or I will try to write my learnings about these sooner in another blog. in breif, under these concepts, the Lord is the custodian of the soul, and has to do everything to take the soul to moksham. The soul for its part, has the keen intent to achieve the Lord, as clearly depicted by Rukmini Nachiyaar.

These are days when we have social networked marriages, people might claim themselves right by quoting Rukmini and Krishna, getting married. Please take note here, that Krishna and Rukmini are the perfect couple, thus called divya dampati. Also Rukminikalyanam, was given consent by parents form both families, much unlike today, again which is disappointing. There are three kinds of marriages accepted by the shashtras

1. Vedic Marriage : A traditional marriage with the consent of parents, a mantapam built and all the veda-nada, mantram, saptapadi, laaja homam, Kanyadanam.

2. Gandharva Marriage : Here it is a love marriage where, the bride and groom and are in love with each other no doubt, but have not met each other in person before.

3. Rakshasa vidhana marriage : The groom exhibits his valour in a open ensemble of the bride’s family. Elopes with her, with her content, and lucidly challenging the bridal party. Practised generally by Rakshasas.

In Rukminikalyanam, all three forms of marriage are clear, as it occured with the consent of parents, Rukmini-Krishna had never met each other, and Krsna kidnapped Rukmini.

Shloka 4

“||poorthEshta daththa niyamavrutha dEva vipra guruvarchanAdibhi: alam bhagavAn parEsha: | ArAdhithO yadi gadAgraja Ethya pAnhim gruhnhAthu mE na damagOsha suthA dayOnyE ||”

“If the almighy Lord (Narayana), the Supreme Ruler, has thoroughly been propitiated (by me) through works of public utility, sacrificial performances, charitable gifts, religious observances, fasting, offering worship to Gods, the Brahmanas, elders and so on, may Sri Krishna (the elder Brother of Gada) and not others such as Sisupala come and espouse me.”

It may seem as if there is a boast of one’s Karma, but it is infact, total surrender of all Karms be it punya (virtues) or sins (papas) at the Lord’s lotus feet. Also it shows to us, that these are to be done, for the simple reason that they are to be done, not for the sake of earning virtues and claiming that we are Good Samaritans. Being modest and earnest, generous and empathetic, lost in the supreme love of the Supreme, are an experience pure bliss, which the soul must accomplish. Not to impress the Lord or anyone, but again because it is the dharma, ought to be followed.