Till the previous episode we have seen the purposes of birth of the four brothers. Rama was born in this world so as to restore the “Dharma” (Righteousness), Lakshmana was born to teach a form of Bhakthi (Devotion) called “Seshathvam”, Bharata was born to teach another form of Bhakthi called “Paarathanthriyam” and Shathrugna was born to teach the highest form of Bhakthi amongst all – “Bhaagawatha Seshathvam/Bhaagawatha Paarathanthriyam”! Thus, the four brothers incarnated in this world and the naming ceremony took place in a grand manner at Ayodhya. We’ve seen until this point so far.
“Atha raajaa dasharathaha teshaam dhaarakriyaam prathi!”
Moving on further, the above sloka explains that King Dasharata starts to ponder with his ministers and Sage Vasishtaachaarya as to how can these four children get married.
Now let’s look at the sequence of the events as described by Valmiki Maharishi – The event of “Naming Ceremony” for these four babies were explained in the 20’th and 21’st sloka in the “Baala-Kaanda”. However, in the 37’th sloka (The same “Sargam”) Valmiki Maharishi says that king Dasharata ponders over the marriage of his four sons! How many slokas are there in the middle now? Hardly sixteen slokas! We can see here that within just 16 slokas, Valmiki Maharishi has explained 12 years of Lord Rama’s life! Whereas, just for the sake of comparison, if we look into Lord Krishna’s life, His first ten years as a child has been explained in at least 10,000 slokas! If we happen to look into the “Vishnu Puraana” or the “Bhaagawatha Puraana” we would be easily able to calculate the number of slokas explaining Lord Krishna’s childhood days!
We might immediately ask within ourselves as to why this partiality? 🙂 Why didn’t Valmiki Maharishi explain much about Rama’s childhood days? The simple reason is because we never find anything called “Rama-Leela”, whereas we find innumerable instances of “Krishna-Leela”! We all witness lot of people who have their names as “Baala-Krishnan”, but we cannot find anyone with the name “Baala-Raaman”! 🙂 It is because of the simple reason that nobody knows what Lord Rama did in his early childhood! What can be assumed is that the Rama-Avataar is an avatar of “Anushtaana-Pradhaana” (meaning, the focus of the incarnation of Lord Rama is to remind the people of the world about their duties and responsibilities of being a human being), whereas Krishna-Avataar is an “Anubhava-Pradhaana” (meaning, the focus of the incarnation of Lord Krishna is to experience the beauty of the Lord, have fun with Him and get involved and immersed into Him – This itself is another form of Bhakthi). This is the reason why Valmiki Maharishi did not give much importance to the childhood days of Lord Rama – Because, “Anushtaana” comes only with progress in age. Whereas, “Anubhava” comes only with children! Thus, Valmiki Maharishi quickly gives a summary within just 16 slokas saying that Rama and his brothers went to the “Gurukula” (School) of Sage Vasishtaacharya and became an expert in various forms of artillery, bow and arrow, etc. and also learnt the different Vedas and the Shaastras.
Now the stage comes wherein Dasharatha thinks within himself that he has already ruled the kingdom of Ayodhya for over 60,000 years, and it’s time for him to announce Rama as his successor and hence retire from this worldly life. Hence as the first step, Dasharatha starts thinking as to how to get his four sons married – Numerous questions arise in his mind as to how to organize the marriage ceremony? Whom to invite? It is at this point in time Sage Vishwaamithra enters into the palace of Ayodhya!
“Chinthayaamaasa dharmaathmaa sobhaaghyaayacha bhaandhavaaha!
Tasya chinthayamaanasya manthri madhye mahaathmanaha!!
Abhyaagacchan mahaa thejaaha vishwaamithro mahaa munihi!”
Here, Valmiki Maharishi beautifully explains the arrival of Sage Vishwaamithra. He says, while king Dasharatha kept on pondering over the marriage of his four sons amongst his ministers in the courtroom (“Tasya chinthayamaanasya manthri madhye”), Sage Vishwaamithra enters into the palace! Valmiki Maharishi describes Sage Vishwaamithra as “Abhyaagacchan mahaa thejaaha”, which means, “The sage who possesses a great level of Tejas (Charisma)”. Upon the arrival of the great Sage, king Dasharata was extremely filled with joy and happiness and ran to welcome him inside the palace!
What did Sage Vishwaamithra ask king Dasharata? What happened subsequently? Let’s wait to find out in the next episode!