In the previous episode we had witnessed that Lord Rama has heard the arguments from both Sugriva and Hanuman and is about to take his decision. Meanwhile Rama has understood that it is only because of the fear that Vibhishana might act as a spy and he might pose a serious threat to his life. Thus Rama is trying to convince Sugriva by explaining his invincible strengths to him. In this way, Lord Rama is trying to boost Sugriva’s courage by assuring him that none in this world is capable of defeating and killing Rama!
Thus Lord Rama replies Sugriva, “Oh Sugriva! You’re saying that Vibhishana has come for a selfish motive of succeeding the Lanka kingdom after Ravana’s death. Isn’t it? So be it! Let him rule Lanka! What’s our problem in that? If Ravana is dead, it means that we are going to get back Mother Sita! This is our primary aim! After Mother Sita is back with us, how are we to bother if Vibhishana or someone else rules Lanka? Moreover, according to our great Ikshvaaku Dynasty’s “Dharma”, even if an enemy comes in front of you and seeks refuge (for whatever reason), it is our duty to accept him! Now Sugriva! If I do not accept Vibhishana, I would end up disobeying the righteous path of our clan!”
On hearing this from Lord Rama, Sugriva is in tears of joy! He thinks within himself for a moment, “Oh wow! This Rama is such a righteous person!” Here, Sugriva equates the relationship between Vibhishana and Ravana (two brothers) and Vaali and Sugriva himself (Again two brothers)! Now he thinks, “Are relationships between brothers so dangerous that one kills the other for a selfish motive?”
As Sugriva thinks thus for just a split of a second, again Rama realizes Sugriva’s thought process and immediately changes his reply!
“Na sarve bhraatharasthaatham bhavanthi bharathopamaaha!”
Rama continues, “Oh Sugriva! Please don’t think like that! Relationship between brothers is such a divine thing! I have a brother by name Bharata and he is an epitome of this! No brother in this world can equal the sacrifice and love exhibited by Bharata!”
It might be surprising for us that, with Lakshmana by his side, Rama is praising Bharata who is so many kilometres away from this place! Why is that so? If we remember our first few episodes, I had insisted that “Paarathanthryam” form of Bhakthi (Devotion) is one step higher and significant than “Seshathvam” form of Bhakthi. Bharata is always a person who acts only according to Lord Rama’s wish and this is why “Paarathanthryam” is always more significant.
Thus here also we are seeing that, because of this significance Bharata has a special place in Lord Rama’s heart! It is only due to this significance, Lord Rama is trying to bring out Bharata’s speciality for all of us to understand!
As Sugriva listens to all this, again he has a small thought within himself within the split of a second: “Oh! This Rama always keeps talking about himself, his family and his brothers only!” The moment this thought flashes in Sugriva’s mind, Rama again changes his reply immediately, “Oh Sugriva! If there should be a good friend in this world, it should be you! You have proved that a friend in need is a friend indeed! You are an epitome of friendship!”
Sugriva is totally surprised upon hearing this! He is completely taken aback by Lord Rama’s righteous but smart replies! Thus now, Sugriva is totally convinced and he has understood what is Lord Rama’s intent! He understands and realizes that Lord Rama does not reject anyone who comes to him for surrender! He did not abandon me! Hence he should not abandon Vibhishana too!
Thus Rama finally announces his decision: “Oh Sugriva! You’ve told that Vibhishana is a bad person. Hanuman has told that Vibhishana is a good person. I’m not going to accept both of your arguments – I’m going to consider one portion from what you’ve said and one portion from what Hanuman has said!”
“Doshoyadhyabhi tasyasyaath sathaametath anarhitham!!”
Rama announces his decision finally: “I’m telling now – I will accept Vibhishana even if he is a bad person!”
Thus, this becomes a landmark decision of Lord Rama in the entire Ramayana story – He accepts even Raakshasaas who come to him with unconditional surrender! This is the speciality of Bhagawan! For today, let’s ponder upon this important point and digest this within us. We shall wait for the next episode to find what happens next! 🙂