Summary of last session (December 11) by Shri. Mohan Khandekar.
Shri Vijay ji started the session with the history of Ramayana and its significance to us.
Valmiki Ramayan: This is an historical epic story. According to many knowledgeable, the narration by Rishi Valmiki leans towards righteousness (धर्म) and describes Shri Ram as maryada Purushottam (मर्यादा पुरुषोत्तम).
Ved Vyasa written Ramayana is also called Adhyatma Ramayana.
Tulsidas ji’s Ramcharit Manas not only combined the above two but also incorporated stories from Bhagvatam and principles of Vedanta.
According to many Acharyas and Gurus, follow the message from all three Ramayans to reach that undivided ONE and attain the state of realisation (जीवनमुक्ती).
The Vedas teach us to follow the paths of Karmakand (action), Upasana of Devi and Devatas (Follow the scriptures to gain indirect results) and Gyan (knowledge of detachment from desires to remove ignorance).
Vijay ji drew our attention to the BMI chart to emphasise that the desire prompted actions reside in”B”. These are the enemies (शत्रू) and need to be destroyed. That’s what Sahtrughna (शत्रुघ्न) stands for.
Lakshman stands for supreme righteousness (परमधर्म) and knowledge (ज्ञान). Lakshman Rekha stands for the line of righteousness (धर्म रेखा). We all know the result of crossing the line.
He further referred to Manusmriti and laws of the land. Dharma, Artha and Kaam represents Purusharth and following a righteous path will lead to cleansing of the mind (चित्तशुद्धी), a preliminary requirement for jeevanmukti. Gurudev in his commentary has rightfully said “we have the right to choose whatever we want but we have to face the consequences”.
34:6 Shiv ji did not part with the story of Shri Ram till Ma Parvati asked. (Vijay ji’s comments: do not give knowledge to unfit students as it may be misused. One that belongs to Shankar Bhagvan is called Uma).
35:1 Tulsidas ji worked very hard to write the Ramcharit. He humbly credits Shiv ji for the blessings. “I poured my unwavering devotion and I was graced with this Prashad from Bhagwan. With His blessings, I now have become a poet of this beautiful poetry”. Tulsidas ji proclaims. (Vijay ji’s comments: सुमती =अध्यात्मिक बुद्धी, हिय=ह्रिदय). He further explained the relation between Jeev, Jagat and Jagdeeshwar. As long as the jeev is attached to pairs of opposite (sansar), it cannot reach the Jagdeeshwar. The purity of mind is more important than purity of the body. Satwic tendencies will lead to sattvic worldly transactions. The one who tries for the jivanmukti is called Sujan.
35:2 Here Tulsidas uses beautiful metaphors. Vedas and Puranas are oceans. We have difficulty understanding their depths. Sages and saints are clouds forming over these oceans and showering mankind with knowledge in the form of rains. Vijay ji elaborated on the words, Madhur, Manohar and Mangalkari (मधुर, मनोहारी, मंगलकारी). Madhur = Priya (प्रिय), Manohari + Mod (मोद), mangalkari = Pramod (प्रमोद)
35:3 Here is another simile. Shri Ram’s name is like pure and pristine water which cleans the dirt. Just like love and devotion towards Him can not be described, there are no words to describe the sweetness of the water.
35:4/5 The water provides nourishment to the fields of Rice. Shri Ram’s name is like this water. Just like rice is necessary to sustain life, the recital of This name through Ramcharit Manas nourishes our spiritual hunger (आध्यत्मिक भूक) and we are on the path of jivanmukti.
Doha: Tulsidas ji describes four types of conversations and compares it to four Ghats (corners) to a beautiful and tranquil lake. Vijay ji’s compared these conversations as follows:
Tulsidas–Saints: Deenghat (दीनघाट/संसार)