Monday, August 24, 2009

BG 18.23

Adisesha never leaves the Lord even for a moment. The Lord Sri Rama was separated from Sri Sita for some time. In His First Twelve years, marriage with Sri Sita did not take place. At the time of marriage Sri Rama was 12 years old and Sri Sita was 6 years old! Thus initially, Sri Rama was not with Sri Sita for 12 years. Next, when Sri Sita was kept captive in Ashoka Vana, Sri Rama was separated from Her for Ten months. Again, when Lav and Kush sang Ramayana before Sri Rama, He desired to see Sri Sita and Valmiki. At that time Sri Sita made a promise and entered into Mother Earth and reached Vaikuntam. Even after this incident, Sri Rama remained on this Earth and ruled for many Thousands of years. Thus, Sri Rama was separated from Sri Sita. But, Sri Rama never got separated from Lakshmana. Sri Rama was born in Punarvasu star and Lakshmana and Shatrugna were born in Aslesha [Tamil- Ayilyam ஆயில்யம்] star. Since Lakshman was born after Sri Rama, we can say that Lakshmana was never there without Sri Rama. Then, when did Sri Rama depart for Vaikuntam? And, when did Lakshmana leave for Vaikuntam? To know answer for this, we have come to Lakshman Ghat on the banks of Sarayu river.

We can see the wide flow of Sarayu river, who emerged from Brahma and who was brought here by Vasishta. From this place in Sarayu, Lakshmana, incarnation of Adisesha, departed for Vaikuntam. On the shore, we can see a temple for Lakshmana. Sri Rama, Sri Sita and Lakshmana are gracing. Sri Rama was dark blue, while Lakshmana was fair complexioned. One was personification of patience, while the other desired nothing except serving the Lord. One was incarnation of the Lord, while the other was incarnation of Adisesha. After worshiping them, we come to the Ghat, where long steps are laid. Why did Lakshmana leave for Vaikuntam from here? For this we have to refer to Uttara Khand of Srimad Ramayanam. In the Yuddha Khand, after Ravana was slain, and Vibheeshana was made King of Lanka, all Devas and others assembled over the sky praised Sri Rama. They told that He was Sriman Narayana, and since His mission was over, He could return to Vaikuntam. But Lakshmana said that Sri Rama was to return to Ayodhya and rule the Kingdom. Sri Rama also declined Devas' request and claimed He was a human only and returned to Ayodhya. Sri Rama ruled the Kingdom for 11,000 years. When this period was about to end, Brahma and other Devas discussed and decided to remind Sri Rama that He should return to Vaikuntam; they also decided to depute Kala deva [काल देव], to go to Sri Rama. Kala Deva pondered as separating Sri Rama from the people of Ayodhya was not that easy. Finally, he decided to carry out the mission, and in the guise of an elderly man, he reached Sri Rama's palace. Sri Rama welcomed him and offered all respects, due to a guest. When Sri Rama asked the purpose of the old man's visit, the old man replied that he wanted to talk to Sri Rama confidentially, with none else present. When Sri Rama accepted, the old man said that even Lakshmana should not be present! That time only Sri Rama realized that He had never considered Lakshmana as separate from Him! Since the old man insisted on Lakshmana also leaving them, Sri Rama agreed. The old man put another condition that no one should interfere in their conversation anf if anyone intruded that person should be killed by Sri Rama Himself! Sri Rama was surprised at these conditions; still, respecting the guest, He did not object and entered into private conversation with the old man. Lakshman was guarding at the door, so that none entered the room. Kala Deva, in the guise of the old man, told Sri Rama that His time on Earth was getting over and that He should return to Vaikuntam. As they were conversing, sage Durvasa appeared at the door. Lakshman stopped Durvasa from entering and told about the order. Enraged, Durvasa said that if he was not allowed, he would curse all. Lakshmana was in a dilemma. Finally, Lakshmana decided that he would go inside and get Sri Rama's permission. Lakshmana entered and conveyed the arrival of Durvasa. But having violated the order, Lakshmana had to be killed by Sri Rama! The old man took leave and requested Sri Rama to keep up His promise and not to violate His own words! Sri Rama had to kill Lakshmana. Can this ever happen? Sri Rama could never sleep without Lakshmana. Considering Sri Rama's delicate position, He was advised that if Lakshmana got separated from Sri Rama, it was equal to killing Lakshmana! Accepting this, Lakshmana came to this spot and meditating on the Lord, he left for Vaikuntam. Unable to bear the separation of Lakshmana, Sri Rama also left for Vaikuntam, from another place, Guptar Ghat. We will now see slokas 27 and 28 together. First, sloka 27, describing Rajasa Karta:

rāgī karmaphalaprepsur lubdho hiṃsātmakośuciḥ
harṣaśokānvitaḥ kartā rājasaḥ parikīrtitaḥ 18.27

Parikirtita = such a person acting is, Rajasa karta= Rajasa Karta. Ragi = desirer [one who desires]. Person having strong desire for name and fame. Karma phala prepsu = desire or expectation in result of the karmas [being performed by this person]. Though both are desires, one is in being famous while the other is for results and rewards. Lubdha = calculative [in spending for noble causes]. This person hesitates to spend for good causes. Himsatmaka = hurts others and himself. He makes others to suffer for his work. Ravana made Mareecha to suffer to get his work done. Asuci = unclean. For any work, one has to be clean. This person does not even bathe! Both body and mind are to be clean. Harsasokanvita = governed by the happiness and sorrow of performing a karma. That is he is moody and changes temperement. Thus, Rajasa Karta is qualified by:
  1. Desire in fame.
  2. Expects results.
  3. Ungenerous for good karma.
  4. Hurts others and self.
  5. Unclean.
  6. Mercurial.
Now, the Lord describes Tamasa Karta in sloka 28:

ayuktaḥ prākṛtaḥ stabdhaḥ śaṭho naiṣkṛtikolasaḥ
viṣādī dīrghasūtrī ca kartā tāmasa ucyate 18.28

Karta = such a performer is, ucyate = called, tamasa = Tamasa [Karta]. Ayukta = unqulified [to perform a karma]. Prakrta = ordinary learning [as opposed to learning Vedas]. Stabdha = like a wood [expressionless, with no interest to perform a karma]. Satha = [indulging in] evil karma [abhichara karmas, directing evil to others, something like witchcraft]. Naiskrtika = hurting others, alasa = very lazy [no interest to continue and complete task undertaken], visadi = displeasing [ always scornful behaviour], dirghasutri = scheming [against others as a habit] for a long time. Thus, Tamasa Karta is qualified as:
  1. Disqulified for a karma.
  2. Shallow learning.
  3. Expressionless.
  4. Practicing sorcery.
  5. Being cruel to others.
  6. Lazy.
  7. Unpleasant.
  8. Habitual schemer.

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