Dasaratha heartbroken

April 07, 2019 08:53 pm | Updated 08:53 pm IST

As every episode in the Ramayana unfolds, Valmiki captures the rich insights into human life and nature that is under the powerful influence of a larger destiny, pointed out Kalyanapuram Sri Aravamudhachariar in a discourse. King or commoner, scholar or unlearned, man or woman, are all affected in this samsara. Could there be a greater heartbreak than the one experienced by Dasaratha who is driven to send Rama into exile for fourteen years instead of crowning Him Yuva Raja as promised a few fours back? There is haste in Dasaratha’s decision. He confesses to Rama that he has premonitions and ominous dreams which portend death of kings or similar calamities. He says he is resolved to carry out his plan the next day itself without any delay as it happens to be most auspicious for a king’s coronation according to astrological experts. This is to take place despite Bharata’s absence at the moment. Although Bharata is pious, compassionate and righteous by nature, obedient to all and is self controlled in all ways, the king says that human mind is very unpredictable. Moreover, any resolve to accomplish good ends can be disrupted and one has to guard against any harm or evil within or without. These words are indicative of how destiny forces him to change his own cherished desire to see Rama crowned. As Rama leaves for the forest in the chariot driven by Sumantra, Dasaratha, hit by the rudest of shocks, experiences the greatest void ever in his life and succumbs to sorrow. He gazes at the clouds of dust raised by the speeding chariot until when they are no longer visible and then falls on the ground. He wails that having followed Rama, his sight has not returned. But in such a situation that triggers strong emotions, Rama maintains equanimity and teaches by example how to deal with misfortunes.

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