Today’s episode marks the beginning of a very important “Dharma” that is the highlight of the meeting between Vibhishana (Ravana’s brother) and Lord Rama. We are going to witness how Vibhishana exhibited complete and unconditional surrender at Lord Rama’s feet and what were the hurdles that he faced en-route this.
In the previous episode we had witnessed that Vibhishana is humiliated and insulted by his brother, Ravana, who ordered his permanent exile from Lanka. Thus, Vibhishana comes out of the Lanka palace and decides that it is none other than Lord Rama who would be his saviour from here on. Deciding thus, Vibhishana, accompanied by four other Raakshasas, makes his way to the place where the Vaanara army is sitting (The other side of the ocean).
“Aajagaama muhurthena yathra raamah sa lakshmanaha!!”
Thus, Vibhishana hurries his way towards the place where Rama is sitting along with his brother Lakshmana.
We might wonder why Vaalmiki Maharishi says “Raamaha sa Lakshmanaha!” In other words, we might wonder why doesn’t Vaalmiki Maharishi take Rama’s name alone and why is he saying “Rama, who was along with Lakshmana!” Why is he invoking Lakshmana in this context?
It seems that upon seeing Rama along with his brother Lakshmana, Vibhishana has immense faith that his surrender to Rama’s feet would be a success! It also means that, when we are going to surrender to Bhagawan’s feet, we should always go to him along with His other devotees. We should never go alone to Bhagawan! We should first announce our surrender to His “Bhaktas” (Devotees) and “Bhaagawathas” (Learned scholars, who always are in the service to Bhagawan). It is only these people who will take us near Bhagawan!
Why are we saying this? It is because, if we directly go and stand in front of Bhagwan, only our sins and wrongdoings will appear in front of his eyes, and hence there is a possibility that He would end up punishing us before even we start to talk with Him! It is for this reason that we go to Bhagawan along with His “Bhakthas” and “Bhaagawathas”. Thus the first important message with regards to the “Sharanaagathi Dharma” is that, when we go in front of Bhagawan, we should always go along with His devotees, rather than going alone to Him! It is for this reason here too, that Vibhishana is going to Rama in the presence of Lakshmana, and not when Rama is alone!
“Yesha sarvaayutho pethaha chathurbhir saha raakshasaihi!
Hanumath pramukhaan sarvaan idam vachanam utthamam!!”
As Vibhishana is coming towards the shore with four of his friends, the entire Vaanara army headed by Sugriva and Hanuman spots him. Upon seeing Vibhishana approaching fast, Sugriva is terrified that he is coming to attack the Vaanara army. Immediately Sugriva alerts all the Vaanaras to be on their feet and tackle Vibhishana and Co. Sugriva announces, “Oh friends! Get ready quickly! We’re getting an enemy to fight! Seems like Ravana has sent a team of Raakshasas here to finish us off! Let us show them who we are!”
At this point, Vaalmiki Maharishi has a doubt: There are only four Raakshasas accompanying Vibhishana, and the number of monkeys that are there on the ground is more than 50 crore! How can a four-member army take on a 50 crore strong army? Moreover, is Sugriva a coward? Is he afraid of just seeing four demons coming forward? All of us know the valor and powers of Sugriva and the monkeys! However, why is Sugriva all tensed up upon seeing just four Raakshasas?
Sugriva’s only point of worry is that, if these demons come and kill him or his monkeys, it is not a problem. But if these demons go and attack Rama and if they manage to kill him, then the entire mission is a failure! If Rama is killed, there is no point in Sugriva and the 50 crore Vaanaras to be alive! This is why Sugriva is getting scared!
Thus Sugriva gets scared not for his life – But for the life of his hero, Lord Rama! This is the second message from the discussion of “Sharanaagathi Dharma” – When we surrender to the Lord’s feet, our surrender should be unconditional and our focus point should be only on the welfare of Bhagawan and not on the welfare of the self!
Thus, as Vibhishana approaches the land area, Sugriva and Co. think that he is coming to attack and kill Rama. Little does Sugriva realizes that Vibhishana is coming to surrender to Lord Rama’s feet! What happens next? Does Sugriva allow Vibhishana to go forward and meet Rama or does he stop Vibhishana from proceeding further? Did Vibhishana manage to see Rama and talk with him? Let’s wait till the next episode to find out! 🙂