Episode # 351 – “Never discard the advice of elders and the Spiritual Master” – Vidura explains!!!

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In the previous episode we had witnessed the culmination of the 39’th Adhyaaya of the Vidura Neeti and the commencement of the final 40’th Adhyaaya. This is a very short one as mentioned yesterday and here, Vidura is going to give some impactful golden pieces of advice and remarks before he puts a full stop for his conversation with King Dhirdiraashtra. We witnessed the first of the few important impactful words of Vidura, wherein he says that if King Dhirdiraashtra is going to undertake tasks that aren’t of the approval of the elderly and experienced people around, they’re going to end up in a disastrous failure very soon! Here he uses this point to once again slam King Dhirdiraashtra for his indifference in his attitude towards wise decision making. If he’s not willing to listen to any of his able and experienced people around him, then Vidura questions him as to why does he have all of them in Hastinapura. Why can’t he run the show all by himself? Thus, if elderly and experienced people are putting forth some important pieces of guidance and advice, it is our bound duty to listen to them and act accordingly by mending our ways in that direction.

This is exactly where Ravana made the mistake as well – During our Ramayana project, we’ve witnessed innumerable instances wherein Ravana discarded all the words of advice from many people around him and finally had to perish. Even during the initial days when Ravana was preparing to abduct Mother Sita, his close aide Maareecha warned him not to do this. He narrates his experience that Bhagawan Rama had given to him in the past. We might remember that when Bhagawan Rama was a child, he had pushed away Maareecha far and deep into the ocean with just a single arrow and this heavy drubbing was still afresh in Maareecha’s mind. So he warns Ravana thus, “Oh Ravana! I still have the wounds of Rama’s fiery in my body! If you dare to go behind his wife, you’ll also have the same experience as I had! Hence, please drop this idea of abducting Sita and go back to Lanka!” However, as fate would have it, Ravana fails to listen to Maareecha’s words here.

After Ravana abducts Mother Sita, his brothers Vibhishana and Kumbakarna advised Ravana to give back Mother Sita to Bhagawan Rama. In fact, Vibhishana made repeated attempts to convince Ravana to deter from such a heinous crime, however, Ravana turned deaf ears to all of it! When Hanuman came into Lanka and found out the whereabouts of Mother Sita through his search, he made his way into Ravana’s palace and warned him of dire consequences if he’s not handing over Mother Sita to Bhagawan Rama. Again, as fate would have it, Ravana disobeys and Hanuman set Lanka on fire and went back! Eventually when Vibhishana took up this matter again with Ravana, he again discarded Vibhishana and kicked him away from Lanka! As a final word of advice, Kumbakarna tried his best and yet, Ravana didn’t pay heed!

Thus we can witness here that inspite of innumerable opportunities given by Bhagawan, Ravana never utilized any of them and thus met a ghasty end to his illustrious stint as a great king! Thus the lesson that we should learn from all these scriptural evidences is that, if someone elderly with truckloads of experience is rendering some guidance, it is our bound duty to listen to it and mend out ways towards the direction of Dharma. Especially if these words are from our parents or the teacher or importantly from the Spiritual Master, there should not be even an iota of thought of disregarding their advice. On one hand we witnessed Ravana’s bad example and on the other hand, we can witness how Bhagawan Rama was an epitome of this one characteristic. When his father, King Dhasharata wanted Rama to go along with Sage Vishwamitra for the “Yagna”, he did not speak a word against his father and followed Sage Vishwamitra the very next moment! When his step-mother Kaikeyi conveyed the harsh decision of the 14-year exile, Bhagawan Rama took it upon himself immediately without speaking a word against anyone, although he knew it was a big conspiracy that was pinned up against him! If the words have come from his parents, no matter what, it is Bhagawan Rama’s duty to obey them without asking a counter question. This is what we’ve to learn from the Ramayana and Bhagawan Rama’s life events that are documented by Valmiki Maharishi.

Thus the message from both yesterday’s and today’s episode is that, at whatever situation we are in, it is our bound duty to respect and obey the words of elders and experienced people, as their guidance would be of prime importance for us in pursuing our path of Dharma. Especially, if the advice comes from a great “Satguru” or a “Spiritual Master”, we shouldn’t even have a second thought about it, but to follow each and every word what he or she tells us!

So for today, let us ponder upon this important point, which King Dhirdiraashtra had failed upon! It is always important that we do not fail in the same way as King Dhirdiraashtra did. We’ve been given a golden opportunity by Bhagawan to mend our ways in the right direction. Let us utilize this opportunity for our betterment and spiritual growth to the maximum possible! We shall wait till the next episode to witness Vidura’s next important and impactful point! Stay tuned! 😊

Published by Dr. Jeayaram

Holds a PhD in Management Psychology from Universite Paris Saclay, Paris, France. Also an Asst. Professor of Human Resources management at Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham in Kerala, India. A professional South Indian classical musician (singer) performing concerts. Through this blog, I'm trying to bring out the richness of Indian culture & values and I request your support and feedbacks in making this humble effort a success!!

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