Saranagati is seeking refuge at the Lord’s feet unconditionally. A Jivatma entrusts his self inclusive of his intrinsic worth and limitations to the Supreme Being with the plea to accept, protect and purify him of all blemishes. The Lord’s benevolence is the basis of His vow of protection by which one’s merits, faults and sins get burnt in the very act of surrender, and this is exemplified in Rama’s acceptance of Vibhishana, said Sri C.L. Ramakrishnan in a discourse.

Vibhishana comes to Sugriva’s camp with four rakshasa friends and fearlessly announces to the monkeys that he, the brother of the wicked Ravana has renounced kingdom, wife and children, and is now seeking refuge and protection at Rama’s feet. Sugriva brings this message to Rama and also conveys his opinion that the rakshasas are tricksters and cannot be trusted. Rama wishes to know the opinion of others as well since in times of crisis friends have to exchange advice for the general good. Angadha, Sarabha, Jambhavan, Mainda and others echo Sugriva’s opinion and feel that Vibhishana cannot be trusted. But Hanuman’s appraisal of the situation is different. Hanuman feels that the time and manner of Vibhishana’s approach does not give room for any suspicion. His fearless face reveals absolute honesty and he has rejected his brother who has opted to yield to his weakness and refuses to mend his evil ways.

Rama is steadfast in His dharma and finds Hanuman’s words in concurrence with his own decision. He speaks worthy words that have since then given courage and hope to millions of people who feel dejected and helpless when caught in samsara.‘How can I reject him who has come to me as a friend? It goes against my principles. Even if Vibhishana desires to rule Lanka, I would give it to him since my waging a war against Ravana is to get back Sita and not the kingdom of Lanka. Moreover, I cannot reject anyone who seeks refuge in me. My dharma is such. Even at the cost of my life or any suffering I will uphold this dharma and not deviate from it. Even if Ravana came to me for sanctuary, I will accept him without hesitation. How can I reject Vibhishana who has done no wrong to me?’

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