In the previous episode we witnessed that Bharata was advancing towards Rama as he has a feeling that Rama was somewhere around that particular place near Chithrakoota. As he advances further, he sees Rama, Lakshmana and Sita in their hamlet. Bharata was overwhelmed on seeing Rama and in the meanwhile Lakshmana was furious to see Bharata approaching as he mistakes that Bharata is coming to kill Rama and Sita! However, Rama checks Lakshmana’s anger and they wait for Bharata to come closer.
Bharata sees Rama, Lakshmana and Sita closer as he approaches their hamlet. On the contrary to what Lakshmana expected, Bharata was all in tears as he approaches Rama and straightaway fell on his feet, crying like a child! Once he fell on Rama’s feet, he never stood up after that. He was crying, crying and crying to his heart’s content! This is a very emotional moment for all the four brothers as Rama tries to console Bharata and lifts him up with his long arms and makes him sit on his lap.
Now Rama has a look at Lakshmana who is already embarrassed that he had committed a huge mistake! Rama says to Lakshmana, “Oh Lakshmana! You were saying that Bharata was coming to hunt me down! Now look at him! He’s just in tears and came with all his noble and pure heart in search of me!” Lakshmana is now all the more embarrassed upon hearing this from Rama! He bends his head down in shame and sorrow at the same time!
However, Rama didn’t relent in his talk now. He now gives a fitting reply in a harsher tone, which Lakshmana never expected! Valmiki Maharishi brings it out in the following sloka:
“Yathi raajyasya hethosthvam imaam vaacham prabhaashase!
Vaksyaami bharatham drishtvaa raajyamasmai pradheeyathaam!!”
From the above sloka Rama continues to say, “Oh Lakshmana! Till now I never knew that you might have a desire to rule the kingdom of Ayodhya! I think it has been proved now! (“Yathi raajyasya hethosthvam imaam vaacham prabhaashase!) If this was the case, you could have expressed this desire to me much before! Even now it is not too late. Tell me if you have a desire to rule Ayodhya! You can always wish to do it! I shall immediately convey this to Bharata and get the kingdom for you! You can go back to Ayodhya and live happily in the palace as a king! I shall go to the forest with my dearest Bharata! My Bharata would never say a ‘no’ for this plan!”
Upon hearing this from Rama, Lakshmana was shell-shocked as he sank into deeper embarrassment! He started to weep bitterly as he realized his great folly that he had committed! We might wonder why Rama was suddenly so harsh towards Lakshmana!
Lakshmana replies to Rama now with tears, “Oh My dear Rama! I do not want a kingdom! I do not want a Vaikuntam! I do not want anything else in this world but your lotus feet! Please do not let me off! I’m apologizing for what I’ve done!”
We might have a question whether Rama doesn’t know to talk politely or not! Why is he talking so harshly to Lakshmana although he is always with him and of service to him? Here is an important message for all of us: If we misbehave with Bhagawan, even then he might not get angry on us! Whereas, if we misbehave with a Bhaktha (Ardent devotee) of Bhagawan, he gets extremely angry on us! Here too we can witness the same thing: The moment Lakshmana misbehaves and scolds Bharata, who is an ardent devotee, Rama gets extremely angry and even doesn’t mind giving a banter to Lakshmana too!
We can witness this same situation during the “Yuddha Kaanda” when Ravana attacked Rama multiple times he never got angry! However, when Ravana decided to attack Hanuman (who is an ardent devotee of Rama), at that moment, Rama decided to teach Ravana a lesson and to show him what Rama’s fury is all about!
Thus Rama, Lakshmana, Bharata and Shathrugna hug each other and are in tears of joy in seeing each other! Let us also sink into this joyous moment for today and wait till tomorrow to witness the next important happening! 🙂