In the previous episode we witnessed that Hanuman has completed his talk for around fifteen minutes continuously and eventually Rama turns towards Lakshmana and asks him to respond to Hanuman. Meanwhile we had also discussed a very important leadership quality as to who should address whom! As Lakshmana is about to start his reply to Hanuman, Rama stops him again!
Lakshmana is curious and asks Rama why did he stop him even before he started talking. Rama replies, “Oh Lakshmana! Please be careful while you talk to this person! I’ve never heard such an excellent and a brilliant speech from anyone in my life so far!!” Saying thus, he cautions Lakshmana to be careful in what he replies.
Rama goes on further to explain in detail how he admired Hanuman’s speech. Rama has a unique distinction called “Vaakmi Shrimaan”, meaning “An expert in talking”. If Rama has to appreciate someone for his or her speech, we can infer the significance of Hanuman in this context – He has the unique status of being the “Aachaarya” meaning, “The Supreme Teacher” (I shall explain in a later context, why is Hanuman considered to be in this status). Normally in Valmiki’s Ramayana there are very few instances wherein Rama praises anybody else, but here, he’s in full praise and appreciation to the way Hanuman crafted his speech. This is going to be a good learning for all of us – How to deliver an excellent and an eye-catching speech? How do we conduct ourselves in front of a group of audience? What are the things to do and things to avoid? Rama himself gives a detailed accord and says that all these characteristics are imbibed in Hanuman and that’s the reason why he talks so well! Here, we can look into a verse from a very famous text called “Thirukkural” written by Thiruvalluvar in Tamil. It states the following:
“Iniya ulavaaga innaadha kooral kani iruppakkaai kavarndhattru!!”
It means that, a person should never employ a bad or a filthy language to address another person. The language that we use should be pleasing for the audience to listen to. People should not feel irritated or bored in listening to our talk. Hence in this way, Rama tells Lakshmana, the following. There are five to six verses in this context in the text of Vaalmiki Ramayana and starting from here, we shall explore one by one in subsequent episodes to gain a detailed understanding:
“Naanrig veda vineetasya naa yajur veda dhaarinaha!
Naa saama veda vidushaha sakhyamevam prabhaashitum!!”
In this above verse, Rama says that if a person hasn’t learnt the Rig Veda or Yajur Veda or Saama Veda thoroughly, he cannot talk excellently like this. We can note at this point that, by learning each sect of the Vedas, one can attain different characteristics. Only if one learns the Rig-veda thoroughly, he would get the “Politeness” and “Humility” (also called “Vinayam” in Sanskrit) in his speech. Only if one learns the Yajur-veda, he will attain the power of “remembering” things (also called “Dhaarana Shakti” in Sanskrit) in his mind perfectly. This is because, in Yajur-veda there are lots of verses that are very difficult to pronounce, read and remember. Only if a person by-hearts the entire text and keeps recollecting it frequently, he would be able to remember everything. Only if a person learns the Saama-veda, he would attain the power of shrewdness and grasping the content of the subject easily (also called “Vaidushya Buddhi” in Sanskrit). Rama says that only because Hanuman has a mastery over all these kinds of Vedas he’s able to craft his speech so well.
What are the other aspects of Hanuman’s speech that Rama is in all praise for? What are the techniques that we can learn with respect to delivering a good corporate lecture? Let’s wait till the next episode to find out!