|Values for Life:
Ravan’s life teaches us to be restraint, however mighty and powerful one is. For all the wrong action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.
Ravan proceeded for war. Ten of his generals supported by their enormous army set out to fight Sri Ram. Observing the huge force, the Vanar leaders hesitated to oppose them. Sri Ram prevented them plunging into war straight and he alone opposed them. Each Rakshasa hero thought that Ram was fighting exclusively with him. It was so terrible. Wherever one looked Sri Ram was present there. Sri Ram sent several shafts against Ravan whose body was pierced miserably. Lakshman sent seven shafts and cut his flag post off. With another five missiles he killed Ravan’s charioteer and broke Ravan’s bow into two. Vibhishan killed Ravan’s horses.Ravan jumping down darted his spike upon Vibhishan. Lakshaman broke it into three pieces. Ravan then darted his spike that Maya gifted him against Vibhishan. Lakshman took it on his chest and he fell unconscious. When no Vanar leader could pull the spike out, Sri Ram pulled it out. He told Sugreev, Sushena, Maruti etc. to make a cover around Lakshman and nurse him. Then Sri Ram decided to continue the war. But he could not concentrate in the fight remembering the position of Lakshman. Sushena, the chief physician among them examined Lakshman carefully and told that the colour of his body had not changed. It was only a temporary swoon. However he once again sent Hanuman to the Himalayas to bring the Visalyakarani. Hanuman quickly got the plant and Lakshman got up afresh.
When the fight between Ravan and Sri Ram resumed the gods saw that it was an unequal fight. Ravan in his chariot was comfortably fighting Ram who was standing on the ground. Indra asked Matali his own charioteer to take his chariot and to lead Sri Ram in war. Thereupon the battle became unprecedented. Many heroes on Ravan’s side perished. Still Ravan could somehow withstand Ram’s onslaught.
As the fight went on uncertain, sage Agasthya appeared before Sri Ram. He extolled Sri Ram and said: “Ram take the Aadityahridaya mantra from me and you can kill this dangerous Rakshasa chanting that mantra.”
Ram took the mantra with reverence. The fight resumed. The fierce battle continued for seven days. Ravan’s energy seemed to be draining away. Matali reminded Sri Ram: “Prabhu, the mantra that sage Agasthya gave you alone will apply here for victory.” “It is good that you have told me,” saying this to Matali, Sri Ram took the Brahmastra from his quiver and chanting the Aadityahridaya darted it towards Ravan. It pierced Ravan’s chest and he fell dead.
All the Devas, Kinnaras, Yakshas and saints celebrated the fall of Ravan. Vibhishan unable to control his grief wept in deep sorrow. Sri Ram consoled him saying:“He died of my arrow and reached salvation. Don’t lament on him. Do his last rites befitting his aristocratic stature.” This anti-hero of this great work is the best example of a self-ruining genius. As Suparswa very rightly said, Ravan belonged to an illustrious lineage. Very hard working and tireless. To retreat, withdraw or go back was not in his character. He was adventurous too. He lifted the Mount Kailas, worshipped and pleased none other Lord Shiva and received gifts and blessings. All these were very great qualities. But Ravan’s life teaches us that when power comes; automatically comes with it arrogance, greed and tyranny. Ravan wasted his talents on trivial things.
He wanted to establish that he was a matchless hero and therefore, without looking at the pros and corns went to combat with the mighty Bali and Karthaveeryarjuna and met with jeopardy. He fought with his own brother and snatched his ‘Pushpak Plane’ from him. Ravan had no consideration for his brother. It was his over greed. Ravan’s short temper also made fate turn against him. He unneeded killed several messengers that brought unpalatable news to him. All these evils apart from his lust for women paved way for his ruin.
KK Shanmukhan ( To be concluded )