In the previous episode we had witnessed Vidura lamenting once more to King Dhirdiraashtra that his biggest fault in life was to encourage his son Duryodhana to disrespect a woman in front of the public courtroom. He conveys this message indirectly at this context, wherein he explains why a woman should be respected at any cost. He lists down few characteristics of women that make them a special group of people to be respected and protected well. In this way, Vidura once more reminds of King Dhirdiraashtra’s folly of insulting Draupati, which is ultimately going to destroy not only him and Duryodhana, but also the entire Kaurava clan! When Draupati was insulted in the public courtroom by Ducchasana, in association with Duryodhana and Co., it should be remembered that all the so-called “senior” members of the Hastinapura palace inclusive of Bhishma, Dhrona, etc. were absolutely silent! This was indeed the turning point of the entire Mahabharata story, and if there was one instance with which Bhagawan Krishna could nail Duryodhana at the end, it was this one!
It should also be remembered that after this insult, Draupati had undertaken a pledge that whoever insulted her should be killed by her husbands in revenge and it is only after she washes her hair with that person’s blood, she would again dress her hair properly! This famous episode in the Mahabharata is known as “Paanchaali Sabadham” and today there are many documentaries and explanations depicting this whole episode! From this, the basic message that all of us should understand is that, if we insult a woman by physically or mentally assaulting her, the curse that we obtain because of the heinous act would destroy not only us, but also our entire generation of family after us! This is what exactly happened in the Mahabharata also – A huge baniyan tree called the “Kaurava Dynasty” was destroyed and reduced to rubbles and ashes, just because of this one woman’s curse!
Similarly in the Valmiki Ramayana project we’ve seen Mother Sita cursing Ravana for his heinous crime of abducting her and holding her captive by torturing her! We’ve seen this particular instance in the “Sundara Kaanda” of the Valmiki Ramayana – When Ravana came to Mother Sita and threatened her to marry him immediately and come over to his bed, Mother Sita initially tried to advise him to change his attitude towards women! However as we all know, Ravana never budged! It is at this time, Mother Sita cursed Ravana and Lanka with her words for the first time. She says thus, “Just like how today I’m suffering from the separation from my husband and just like how I’m being tortured by all the demonesses today, every woman in Lanka would suffer the same plight as mine! The entire city of Lanka which looks beautiful with all wealth and luxuries, would soon be burnt down and reduced to rubbles! The entire Lanka would look like a graveyard wherein people would run here and there, searching for the dead bodies of their near and dear ones! All the important people in the Lanka kingdom would be killed for their cheap mentality! All the beautiful palaces and buildings adorning Lanka city would be demolished in no time! I’m sure all this would happen when my husband Rama comes soon and invades this city!”
Subsequent to what Mother Sita cursed on that day, we’ve seen what happened to Lanka thereafter! Why to wait till Bhagawan Rama came to Lanka? There was his messenger by name “Hanuman” who came in advance and executed Mother Sita’s curse, isn’t it? We know how Hanuman destroyed each and every building of Lanka and how he burnt the entire city within seconds!
Subsequently, even in today’s world we’re witnessing innumerable instances wherein the country of Sri Lanka (Present day) is in turmoil every now and then! We’ve seen the civil wars that happened for around twenty long years between the Sri Lankan government and the LTTE and how many people were gunned down mercilessly! Many people fled from Sri Lanka as refugees and settled in other places of the world such as India, Europe, the US, etc. Although the war has officially ended as of date, my understanding from the close interactions that I keep having with some people of Sri Lanka is that, there is still a “Cold war” that is going on, and people of both camps are trying to wage “emotional wars” with each other! Even today we can see in Sri Lanka that the native Sinhalese have their own national anthem and the Tamil population in the northern part of the country have their own national anthem. Such is the affair that exists today! If we correlate all these instances together, it might seem to the readers that perhaps Mother Sita’s curse is still alive and is still wreaking havoc in Lanka even after thousands and thousands of years!
Of course this is in no way an offense to the great country called Sri Lanka! Our Sri Lankan readers should not get offended by this, since it’s just my personal understandings and views on this subject. You can correct me if I’m wrong. However all said and done, if there is one beautiful country in the world with respect to nature and people, it should definitely be Sri Lanka! Hence the important message from this extended discussion is that, we should be very careful in life not to insult women. We should make sure that we treat women with utmost respect and ensure that they’re happy and satisfied. We shall wait till the next episode to witness the next point that Vidura highlights! Stay tuned! 🙂