Wednesday, April 24, 2013

#190 Mother- Why did you undertake a thing which threatens my life?

ayOdhyA kAnDa (Book of ayOdhya City)
Volume 2
Chapter 73 - sarga 73
verse 25 - SlOka 25 na tu kAmam kariShyAmi tavAhm pApanishcayE tvayA vyasanamArabdham jIvitAntakaram mama.

Youngest queen kaikEyi asked her husband-king-daSaratha to send Prince rAma to forest on exile for 14 years and coronate her son bharata in his place. rAma, sIta, and lakshmaNa left to forest. bharata was brought back from his maternal uncle`s place kEkaya kingdom, for coronation. bharata instead of accepting the crown rebukes his mother kaikEyi.

Oh the one who is determined to sin! (pApa=sin nischayE=determined) I shall not undertake the wrongful act initiated by you and fulfil your desire. The act is life-threatening to me (jIvitA=life; anta=end; karam=doing; i.e. that which ends lives).

We have to take a direct meaning. Why bharata was considering the act of kaikEyi as a criminal act which threatened his life? The circumstances of cold-war going on in ayodhya fort we can gauge. rAma and lakshmaNa, probably courtiers and citizens on one side. bharata, the 1500 horsemen presented by his maternal uncle on the other side.

rAma-lakshmaNas might have left to forest probably because they were apprehensive of aged-king`s regal powers (though exercised by proxy kaikEyi with king in her apartments.

bharata might not have been sure of his de-facto power, though he may become a de-jure king after coronation. If daSaratha`s army and courtiers revolted because the the tradition of crowning the primogenitor (first-born) was not followed, bharata and his mother might have been treated as criminals and condemned to a dungeon or even sent to gallows. Human history is full of many such acrimonious bitter incarcerations. bharata seems to have preferred a safer course of recalling his brother to ayOdhya, pacify the citizens and courtiers and decide on future course of action depending upon the course of eventualities.

Temple preachers may deduce a different meaning. bharata`s love for rAma was of such a great magnitude that bharata would have died of grief arising out of departure of his beloved brother rAma. But, there are circumstances to also deduce that bharata`s love to his brother rAma was not so ardent and glowing. Pl. see post No. #051 at this blog from the contents box.

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