Summary of last session (December 3) by Shri. Mohan Khandekar.
Shri Vijayji started his discourse with an explanation of conflicting statements from the scriptures. For example Shri Krishna in Bhagvatam says “don’t worship Indra” and Ramcharit says “worship Indra”. Why these opposite messages?
The interpretation of Bhagvatam is different at different levels of comprehension. Krishna is cautioning us against worshipping without understanding. Rituals performed with knowledge will be a true upasana otherwise it will remain karmakand. However karmakand does not necessarily mean pooja rituals. Any action performed comes under this category. An action performed with pure intention and a calm mind will cease the agitations and improve the focus. An action which takes us away from God is a sin and which takes us towards Him is meritorious. “Control your senses and mind”, Shri Krishna emphasises in Bhagavad Geeta. When purity of mind (चित्तशुद्धी) is achieved, one is able to appreciate the falsity of the material world. An avid student (विद्यार्थी=विद्या+अर्थी) of scriptures will be able to dive deeper and unravel the true meaning.
Vijay ji further gave a reference of verse 25 chapter 9 of Bhagavad Geeta:
यान्ति देवव्रता देवान्पितॄ न्यान्ति पितृव्रता: |
भूतानि यान्ति भूतेज्या यान्ति मद्याजिनोऽपि माम् ||25|
Meaning: Devi, Devtas and ancestors will bless you when you worship them.
Shri Ram and Sita too worshipped their ancestors. Being a Suryavanshi Shri Ram devoutly prayed to Surya Devta.
Vijayji narrated a story from Bhagavatam about Vasudeva worshiping Atmatattva (आत्मतत्व) and re -addressed the topic of 28 kalas (16 of the moon and 12 of the sun) before turning to Ramcharit.
34:1 The word Daras (दर्शन) has three meanings. Rituals, Upasana and Gyan. Paras is sparsha (स्पर्श). A dip (स्नान) in pious rivers such as Ganga and Sharyu and taking a sip (जलपान) from them is considered to be very auspicious. It is a form of upasana. As per Vedas, above four can eradicate sins. (Ganga is considered to be a liquid form of Brahman). Sarswati can sing the glories of Vedanta but cannot explain the details.
34:2 Here Tulsidas Ji describes the city of Ayodhya. It is very saintly just like mini Saket lok. Those who are born through four different ways (egg, sweat, seed and mother’s womb) and end their lives in Ayodhya will be free from the cycles of birth and death (realised).
34:3/4 “I started writing Ramcharit in the glorious and holy city of Ayodhya, which is known to annihilate the sins. Listening to it with devotion will help to culminate your ignorance, ego, hypocrisy and will also give you peace of mind” Tulsidas ji declares. He compares our agitated mind to an elephant “burning” in this material world and Ramcharit to a peaceful and serene lake which can provide the ultimate solace.
34:5 Saints and sages adore the Ramcharit, which is composed by Shiv Ji and which has the power to remove despair, sadness and poverty. Here Vijay ji referred to verse 9 of chapter 13 where Krishna advises us to surrender to Him to attain freedom from attachments and bondages.
इन्द्रियार्थेषु वैराग्यमनहङ्कार एव च |
34:6, Doha Here Tulsidas ji humbly and respectfully acknowledges that the Ram katha was composed by Shiv ji and was narrated to Ma Parvati later. With great elation and satisfaction Shiv ji named it as RAMCHARIT MANAS. “I am passing on the same story and I urge you to listen to it with utmost attention and unwavering devotion. This narration is beautiful and is intended to bring great joy to mankind ” Tulsidas ji modestly proclaims, prostrating at the feet of Shankar Bhagwan and Devi Parvati.