The fruit of one’s deeds can never be escaped. Many a time people commit wrong deeds knowingly or otherwise, or in sport or for some momentary pleasure. The retribution follows sooner or later in accordance to the deeds that are recorded meticulously. Dasaratha ruminates on this truth to Kausalya after Sumantra brings tidings of Rama’s departure to the forest. Squirming under the heat of unbearable sorrow, he tells Kausalya that the time to pay the price for his inadvertent act committed long ago is now at hand, said Sri Keeranur Ramamurthy in a discourse.

When he was young and had not married the queen, this incident happened. He had learnt to use his bow to shoot at unseen targets aiming by sound only. Once when he was out hunting on the banks of Sarayu, he wanted to test his skill and so in the dense darkness he waited for some wild animal to approach the river for water. Soon he heard a gurgling sound and presumed it might be an elephant drinking water. So he aimed the arrow precisely at the direction of the sound and sure enough it hit the target. But he was shocked to hear the agonised cry of a human being instead.

It was a young ascetic who had been struck by his arrow and his life was ebbing away. He had come to the stream to collect water for his aged parents who were helplessly blind as well. His dying wish was that Dasaratha should take water to them and break the news to them.

Dasaratha then took the water to the parents who were waiting for their son. . He accepted his unforgivable sin, and helped them to do the final rites for the son. They too decided to enter the funeral pyre but they cursed Dasaratha that he will die of grief and pain of separation from his son. Unavoidable is the way of fate that pursues the deeds of people.

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