Rishi Prasad- A Spiritual Monthly Publication of Sant Sri Asharam Ji Ashram

Let us partake of the nectar of Lord Rama’s ideal character

On the occasion of the inauguration of the Shri RÍma Temple in AyodhyÍ,
Let us partake of the nectar of Lord Rama’s ideal character
BhagavÍn Shri RÍmachandra Ji ruled not only in the land of India but also in the hearts of human society and imparted beautiful lessons of an ideal way of living to the entire world through his conduct, action, life, and thoughts. His ideal life story remains unforgettable and will remain so forever. Shri RÍma temple has been constructed at his birthplace, AyodhyÍ, after a prolonged legal battle. On the occasion of its inauguration, let us learn about RÍma’s virtues and ideal life through Pujya Bapuji’s ambrosial words:
Everyone’s Ideal: Shri RÍma
RÍma Ji is not erased from people’s minds even after the passage of millions of years since the incarnation of Lord RÍma. Why? Because the ideal life of Shri RÍma is exemplary, it sets a bench-mark for everyone to emulate. The exemplary character described in TulsidÍs’s RÍmÍyaÔa is rare in world literature.
If one were to mention an ideal son, brother, husband, father, disciple, hearer, speaker, warrior, and king, the name that comes to everyone’s lips is that of BhagavÍn Shri RÍmachandra Ji. People continue to sing the glory of RÍma’s rule even after countless years.
The virtues of BhagavÍn Shri RÍma Ji were so unique that people of every religion, sect, and race could benefit from adopting them.
If one wishes to see an ideal son, it is Shri RÍma Ji. Even when his father sent Him into exile in the forest, at the time of His coronation, Shri RÍma Ji accepted it willingly. Lord RÍma had immense love in his heart, even for MantharÍ, who was the main person responsible for His exile. No character in the RÍmÍyaÔa is mean or condemnable. In the eyes of Lord RÍma, even bears and apes are not mean. His servants JÍmbavant, HanumÍn, Sugriva, and Angada were as dear to him as Bharat, Shatrughna, Lakshmana, and MÍ SitÍ. Mother KausalyÍ and SumitrÍ were as dear to him as Shabari.
If you want to see an ideal disciple, an ideal Guru-Bhakta, it is Shri RÍma Ji.
प्रातकाल उठि कै रघुनाथा ।
मातु पिता गुरु नावहिं माथा ।।
गुर तें पहिलेहिं जगतपति जागे रामु सुजान ।।
“Rising at the break of day, the Lord of Raghus would bow His head to His parents and preceptor. The Lord of the universe, the all-wise Shri RÍma, also woke before His preceptor.” (RÍma Charita MÍnasa, Bal Kanda: 204.04, 226)
In the Guru’s ashram, RÍma went to graze the cows, swept, served guests, and honored them affectionately. It is difficult to find an ideal servant like Him.
If one wishes to see an ideal brother, it is Shri RÍma. Even though RÍma Ji was the heir apparent to the kingdom of AyodhyÍ, he was delighted to hear ‘Bharat will receive the kingdom.’ Upon learning that Lakshmana had been struck by a powerful Shakti weapon, he wailed and wept bitterly. Even in childhood games, RÍma deliberately accepted defeat to make Bharat victorious. Such is his brotherly love!
If you want to see an ideal husband, it is Lord RÍma. He wanders from place to place, suffering the pangs of separation from his wife, SitÍ. He asks creepers and trees about her whereabouts and sends monkeys everywhere in search of her. Despite being non-attached, he performs all his worldly duties in the best possible way.
When the time came for him to perform the ritual ashvamedha yajna after his forest exile was over, and it was not possible to complete the yaga (yajna) unless it was conducted along with a consort, RÍma refused to remarry and, with the permission of his Guru Vasishtha ji, had a golden figure of SitÍ made to stand beside him during the ceremony in lieu of a live woman.
Lord Shri RÍmachandra was such an ideal warrior that even his enemies could not help singing his virtues. When RÍvana, counting his last breath on the battlefield, was bidding farewell to the world, Shri RÍmachandra sat in his camp with watery eyes. Lakshmana asked, “Brother, we have achieved victory; why are your eyes wet?”
Shri RÍma replied, “Lakshmana, today a great warrior has left this earth.”
Hey RÍma! What a great heart you have!
Lakshmana said, “O Lord, what are you saying? You are weeping for the villain who abducted SitÍ ji; who did not take a single word of advice when you gave him so many chances to reform and to call for a truce?”
Shri RÍma said, “Lakshmana, besides having the vice of abducting another’s wife, RÍvana had many virtues. Today, a pundit, a scholar, a devotee of Shiva, and a great warrior, the ruler of Lanka, RÍvana, is departing from this world.”
Lakshmana was astonished. He rushed towards the battlefield, where RÍvana was taking his last breath. Approaching him, Lakshmana said, “O king of LankÍ, Shri RÍmachandra is shedding tears over your death.”
Lakshmana thought that RÍvana didn’t know the greatness of Shri RÍma, but RÍvana knew it. RÍvana had an old connection with Shri RÍma, and RÍma has been connected with every creature since time immemorial. Shri RÍma is verily the Self of all beings.
Hearing the words of Lakshmana, RÍvana, with a mutilated body, joined his hands and, with tears in his eyes, said, “That’s why… he is Shri RÍma… I offer salutations to him again and again.”
How deeply he respected Lord RÍma, whose arrows mutilated his body and whose servant had set his LankÍ ablaze! How great would that RÍma of the RÍmÍyaÔa have been?
If you want to see an ideal king, it is Lord RÍma. For the satisfaction of his subjects and to win their trust, Shri RÍma did not hesitate in renouncing royal pleasure, royal opulence, and the joy of a householder’s life.
Shri RÍma was skilled in acquiring wealth and using it wisely. Just as bees suck nectar from flowers without harming them, Shri RÍma collected taxes from his subjects in such a way that it did not burden them. He collected taxes from
his subjects while keeping their well-being in mind and being thoughtful about their future. He always took care that the taxes were used only for the welfare of his subjects, not for personal enjoyment. Even if someone makes a hundred mistakes, Shri RÍma does not harbour resentment towards them. If someone possesses only one good quality, Shri RÍma never forgets them.
Shri RÍma is an ideal even for ascetics, sages, and yogis. The ideal hearer (of satsang) is also Shri RÍma. He hears satsang discourses with humility while sitting at the lotus feet of Sage Vasishtha. He said, “O revered sage! Your ambrosial words do not completely satisfy my thirst for knowledge. Just as a partridge is never satisfied by moon beams and keeps constantly gazing at the moon, I am not satisfied by your ambrosial words.”
…and if you want to see an ideal speaker, it is none but Shri RÍma. RÍma speaks pleasant, consoling words succinctly. He speaks with humility, respecting others regardless of their status. If you want to see the embodiment of humility, it is Shri RÍmachandra Ji. Even when ParashurÍma Ji speaks angrily, Shri RÍma, with immense humility, says, “I am Dasharath’s son RÍma, and you are Shri ParashurÍma, performing penance on Mount Mahendra. RÍma, your servant, salutes you.”
Shri RÍma spoke succinctly. When someone came to meet him, he never thought that the other person should initiate the conversation or greet him first. To save the other person from hesitation, Shri RÍma would start the conversation.
Shri RÍma spoke suited to the occasion. When deciding on matters of dharma in his royal court, if two parties had conflicting opinions, Shri RÍma would cite historical examples, quotes from the PurÍÔas, and the decisions made by his ancestors in support of the right party. This made even the supporters of the opposite party think that the other side was right.
Shri RÍma listened to others’ words with great attention and respect. He would listen until the speaker didn’t say anything harmful to themselves or others. If someone spoke ill of another and it seemed that it would harm them, and cause disturbance to their mind, or harm others, Shri RÍma, while still listening, would divert the conversation in such a way that the speaker would not feel insulted.
Shri RÍma did not speak harsh words, even to his enemies. In the battlefield, after burning RÍvana’s chariot with an arrow and disarming him with another, his mind remained calm and equanimous. He said to RÍvana, “O king of LankÍ, Go back and return, fully prepared.”
During the battle, after a long time had passed and there was no sign of anger in Shri RÍma, the gods were worried. They thought, “RÍma has not become angry; he remains equanimous. How will RÍvana be destroyed?” Lakshmana, Hanuman, and others were also worried. Both prayed to RÍma, “Lord! Please show some anger.”
At that moment, Lord RÍma invoked anger, saying, “I invoke anger! Come now!”
Though Shri RÍma utilised anger, he was not overcome by it. When anger comes, ignorant people become angry; when greed comes, they become greedy; when delusion comes, they become deluded; when grief comes, they become grief-stricken, but Shri RÍma utilised them only for a specific purpose.
Shri RÍma had remarkable control over his mind. RÍma would not let his mind become disturbed, even if someone committed a hundred offences. A person misbehaving with you might be influenced by their thinking and way of living. They can misbehave with you, but to become disturbed by it or not is your choice. It is not necessary that all people should live according to your thinking.
Shri RÍma is Sthitaprajna (a man of steady Wisdom), a Jivanmukta (liberated while living), and the witness of all. He never becomes happy or sad; instead, he always witnesses happiness and sorrow. The sacred character of Shri RÍma is an ideal for humanity. Every man has the right to infuse his life with joy and bliss for himself and others, by reading, hearing, and reflecting on it. To bring all kinds of happiness to you is the objective of Lord Shri RÍmachandra Ji. Om RÍma… Om bliss… Om Peace…om