Rama Katha Rasa Vahini - Post 31


Dear All,

While Rama shares with Sita about the 2 boons of Kaikeyi, about the need for Rama to fulfill father's command and move to forest for 14 years and also, while Rama is explaining to Sita as to how she has to take care of  his mother, father, brothers etc in his absence, Sita smiles and addresses Rama thus:-

"Rama! you are the son of Dasaratha. I have not heard at any time words unworthy of that lineage fall from your lips. Mother, father, brother, sister, son, daughter-in-law everyone has to experience a quantum of happiness and misery; in proportion to the good and bad done by each. But, the wife has a special source of fortune, good or bad. That is to say, she has a share in the good and bad for which her husband is responsible. She is endowed with a part of his joy or grief. 

So, if the Emperor Dasaratha has ordered you to go into the forest, he has given me too the order to go. A woman may be fed and fostered by her mother and father; she may be revered by her son; she may be served by her maids. But, they can never be her shield and support. The trinkets and toys with which you try to convince me serve only to arouse amusement in me. 

During the years preceding my wedding, father taught me all the duties that shall guide and bind me. I am neither an ignoramus nor a seeker of power. And, more than these, let me tell you, I do not cling fanatically to any opinion because it is mine. There is no need for you to point out my special duty to me, for, I know them all. It is only when I decide to remain here, isn't it, that you have to tell me how and in what ways I have to serve the parents-in-law, the sisters-in-law, and the ruler of the land? But, when I am with you, what chance is there, what need is there, for me to take on the service of others. I am coming with you in full joy! Since a long time, I have had an unfulfilled desire to spend some years in forests. It is my good fortune that I have now the chance to satisfy that desire, in the company of my Lord! I will not give ear, if you insist that I should not express my point of view in this great matter. Donít be angry with me that I disobey you. It is not just and proper for you to throw me aside here, as one throws out water from the cup after quaffing a mouthful. Believe my word! I shall not continue in Ayodhya even for a moment; take me with you".

With these words, Sita fell at Rama's feet and held them tight. "I have not the slightest sorrow that you were not crowned. I hold you dear, crowned or uncrowned. Wherever you are, that is the Empire for me. There is my Treasure. That is my Glory," she pleaded and prayed. Rama told her that forest life was fraught with fears and dangers. The forest was infested with wild animals and wilder men, demonic depredators and dacoits. One has to encounter floods in rivers, wade through thick thorny undergrowth. He said that she was not used to traverse places on foot and therefore, she will have to undergo great exhaustion. He described various other forms of fear and anxiety that will confront her. But, Sita was unmoved. She replied. "Lord! However wild the animals may be, however thick and terror-striking the forest may be, what harm can they cause, what injury can they inflict on me, when you are by my side? I can walk through forest tracks; it will be no trouble for me. I will be happier if you ask me to walk first, preparing the path smooth for you to tread. I shall pick and cast away stones, pebbles and thorns to lessen pain, making your journey easy. 

Allow me to be with you, so that I may render this service and be happy. Here, in the palace of Ayodhya, and in the zenana, I could not get the chance to serve you. I felt worried and miserable that all services for you were undertaken by attendants and aides. There will be no attendant, no aide in the forest! So, I can be happy, doing all the services myself. That is my great good fortune! Make my life worth while, Lord. Give me that glorious chance!" Sita prayed in a variety of ways, pleading for mercy and justice. Rama was moved to compassion, He said, "Sita! Living in the forest, you cannot be happy, you have to suffer greatly in the coming days". 

Rama expatiated on the horrors of jungles and the sufferings that one has inevitably to meet there.  She replied, "Rama,  You are a scion of the lkshvaku line, which has saved millions from danger and disaster! Can you not guard me against them? Are you so weak of hand? I wonít give you trouble; through me, you will not have the slightest worry. Lord! I cannot but follow you. I will lay myself down and sleep at your feet; that will give me the fullest bliss. Rama! I know and recognize none except you. I cannot exist alive for a moment apart from you. Well. If you hold fast to your resolution and proceed, leaving me in Ayodhya, Sita would have drawn her last breath before you reach the forest. Take this as Truth".

Sita's eyes shed streams of tears as she spoke these words.
Rama tried to pacify her. He said, "0 "Sita, you are a very staunch adherent of Dharma. It is best for you to stick to your righteous qualities maintaining them at this place. You cannot act as your will dictates; you have no freedom to behave as you desire. Your Dharma is to act in accordance with my words. Therefore, give up this idea of yours. I am saying this for your own good. Guarding you will be a burden for me certainly. Streams rolling down from mountain peaks, wild beasts that dwell in the caves, lions and tigers roaming without let or hindrance amidst the hills and valleys - these have to be overcome. Rivers in spate will have to be forded. 

We may have to leap down from huge boulders and rocks. Considering these difficulties I have to tell you in such emphatic terms to stay. You have to wear matted hair and clothes of the bark of trees. We men have to go to some river or lake for the evening rites of worship; at that time, who will watch over you against any calamity that might happen? Whatever may be the crisis, we cannot give up those rites. You know how strict that rule is; so, you may have to be alone for some time daily. We cannot say what will happen when".

Rama tried to picture before Sita fearful scenes of forest life, but Sita was not affected in the least. 

.......Listening to Sita revealing her hard determination, Rama continued. "Sita! You are entangling yourself in the complexities of rights and claims! When I proceed to the forest, the aged parents will be wailing and weeping for me. At that time, you can console and comfort them, with gentle assurances. That is your duty. You must conduct yourself according to the needs of each occasion. Be with them; serve them; that is the way to please me, and give me Ananda". 

"However long you argue, whatever you may assert, I shall not leave off treading along the prints your feet make. You may kill me for transgressing your order, but I assert I can never be without you. Ramachandra! No sooner did you speak of the exile in the forest you are entering upon than I had such an upsurge of joy, remembering an incident that took place in my childhood! You cannot understand the extent of that joy! 

...........Sita bowed low, and fell at Rama's feet with these words. Rama felt that it would be improper to continue resisting her wishes. He resolved to yield. "Sita!" he said, "Give up your grief. Do not give way to sadness. As you desire, I shall take you with me. Engage yourselves quickly in preparing for the journey to the forest!" Hearing the sweet words with which Ramachandra spoke, Sita was elated; she was filled with boundless joy. She said, "Preparation? What has one to prepare, to live in the forest? I am always ready, with whatever I need, for I need only you; I have no other want. I am following you, this moment. In you I have all I need. You know I have no desire for anything other than you". With these words, she held Ramaís hand in hers and stepped forward. 

Rama said, "Sita! Consider this: You will not be in Ayodhya for fourteen years. Therefore, go and release the parrots and birds you have reared as pets with love and care. And the cows you fostered with affection! Give them away to Brahmins, so that they might be treated lovingly. Distribute the various articles of dress, the vehicles, and other articles used by you, to the people, or else, they will be ruined by time. It is far better that they be used rather than get disintegrated". When this suggestion was made, Sita immediately ran towards the cages, and addressing each pet bird in loving accents, told them; "Go! Like us, roam freely in the beautiful forest." With her own hands, she opened the cages and set them free! Then she went to the cow-shed. She fed the cows with various tasty foods and talked to the Brahmins who were to receive them as gifts. Her charming face beamed with joy. Spectators who watched her giving the things away felt their hearts melt with sorrow at her impending departure. They shed tears in streams for they were moved by the large-hearted generosity, and more than all, by her exultation at the prospect of accompanying her husband into exile in the forest. Her ecstasy was beyond the pen of any poet.


Dear All,

Sita, with her perseverance, wins Rama's heart and convinces Rama to take her along with Him for exile.

In the process, she teaches to the humanity for centuries to come on duties of a wife!


Rama Katha Rasa Vahini - Post 31 Rama Katha Rasa Vahini - Post 31 Reviewed by Bhakti Mantra on September 12, 2018 Rating: 5

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