In the previous episode we had witnessed that Vibhishana is now standing at the coast, eager to make his presence known to Lord Rama. He is urging to meet Lord Rama immediately as he fears that his mind would lose its focus of surrendering at Rama’s feet. Hence, he is trying to urge Sugriva to let him go ahead and meet Rama immediately. However, what is Sugriva’s reaction? Does Sugriva has trust on this pleading Vibhishana? Let’s find out today!
We shall continue looking into the in-depth meaning of the important sloka that we witnessed yesterday:
“Nivedayatha maam kshipram vibheeshanam upasthitham!
Sarva lokha sharanyaaya raaghavaaya mahaathmane!!”
So now Sugriva asks Vibhishana in a loud and a strong tone: “Who are you? Why have you come all of a sudden to meet Rama? Where were you all these days? How come you suddenly gained the enlightenment to surrender to Rama now? What is the reason for your surrender? Tell me in detail and then proceed!”
For this, Vibhishana replies with tears in his eyes: “Oh Sugriva! Ravana is the most wicked of the entire Raakshasa community! He does not have even a single good quality imbibed in him! It is to this Ravana that I was born as a brother – But not any more! Since I was born amidst his family, I’m also a wicked person! I too have done innumerable mistakes in my life! Even though I have so much of bad things about me, I have come all the way to meet Rama, to explain my situation to him and seek refuge at his feet! Oh Sugriva! Please go and tell Rama immediately about my coming!”
Upon hearing this from Vibhishana, Sugriva is still not convinced. He is not having the heart to approve Vibhishana to meet Rama. Hence he decides to go and explain to Rama and seek his opinion on this. Sugriva thus replies to Vibhishana, “Vibhishana! Wait here! I shall let Rama know this and ask his view first. If he approves, then you can go and meet him!”
Saying thus, Sugriva hurries his way to the place where Rama is sitting along with Lakshmana. Now Sugriva talks to Rama:
“Prahruthya raakshaso hyesha bhraatha mithrasyavaih prabho!
Tasyaaham nigraham manye ksham kshamathaam vara!!”
Thus Sugriva explains to Rama about Vibhishana and his intent to meet Rama immediately! Sugriva says, “Oh Lord! Vibhishana, who is supposedly the brother of Ravana has come here. He says that he wants to meet you and announce surrender at your feet! However, I do not have the belief in him that he has really come for this reason! It might be a ploy of Ravana to destroy us. Hence, my opinion in this case is that we capture this Vibhishana and put him to death immediately! He should not be allowed to escape! Ravana’s ploy should be defeated!”
Following Sugriva’s accord, Jaambhavan, Nala, Neela, etc. of the Vaanara camp supported Sugriva’s argument and saw validity in it. Lord Rama allows everybody to talk and express their opinions one by one and listens to them patiently.
This is an extremely important characteristic of effective leadership – To listen to others’ views, give chance for everybody to express themselves and then take a decision. This kind of leadership in modern day is explained as “Democratic Leadership”! Here we can see that Lord Rama has exactly followed this style of Leadership!
After the entire narration is over, Rama is now to take the decision. The onus of decision-making lies with Lord Rama! Now what is Lord Rama’s decision? Does he approve of Vibhishana’s surrender? Or does he go along with Sugriva’s words? The action continues in the next episode! 🙂