With one stroke of his pen, Chief Justice Sri Ranjan Gogoi has perhaps earned what the Skaanda Purana says in its Phala Shruti:
श्रुत्वा श्रीराम विजयम् पाप बाधात्प्रमुच्यते ।
तथैव शृङ्खला बन्धात् ऋण बन्धात् विमुच्यते ||
On hearing Rama’s victory one will be freed from shackles of sins |
Also from the chains of punishment, also from the entanglement of debt. ||
It took nine years short of half a millennium to initiate a first step of sorts in recovering an invaluable Sanatana civilizational and cultural heritage. More than two hundred years ago, here is how an anguished Tyaga-Brahma or Tyagaraja or Tyagayya entreated Sri Ramachandra.
Come home at least today, O Raghuvira!
You protect me every day since the time I awake in the morning, with your virtuous counsel on Dharma.
You know you’re my refuge [literally: direction, which adds a far more profound dimension].
You know I’m caught in the clutch of your devotion.
O Great Fortune of Tyagaraja!
O Raghuvira come to my home!
However, Tyagaraja was supremely gifted in the sense that he had imprisoned Sri Ramachandra in his own heart. The same Sri Ramachandra whose own birthplace and home had been pulverized to the ground by the peaceful adherents of a desert cult whose divine and pious motivations and devout deeds were beyond even the wildest imagination of Sri Ramachandra’s arch enemy, the Rakshasa Ravana. There was no doubt in either Babar or Mir Baqi’s mind that Allah would be pleased if Sri Ramachandra’s home was offered as Qurbani to him. Feroze Khan would agree: after all, Allah ko pyari hai Qurbani.
And with the Supreme Court’s recent judgement, Hindus can indulge in a fond fantasy that wherever Tyagaraja is, he would’ve composed a Kriti on the upcoming restoration of Sri Ramachandra’s home.
Yet, to the rooted Sanatana civilizational consciousness, there is something innately abhorrent that this whole thing should have even been given the appellation of a “court case.” The fact that not only was it treated as a court case, it was even called a “property dispute,” “title dispute” and variants thereof shows how far the Sanatana society has been enfeebled in the last seventy-plus years. The real villains that accelerated this enfeebling are those bearing Hindu names. But the bigger tragedy is the fact that they have suffered absolutely no punishment for their crimes against Hindu civilizational memory, cultural vandalism and their generational child abuse via textbooks which has produced legions of Swara Bhaskars and Gurmehar Kaurs.
The sheer vulgarity of branding the collective efforts at civilizational reawakening as a “court case” and “righting historical wrongs” will become clearer with a contrast, which I have randomly chosen.
The renowned Nang (Nang Yai and Nang Talung)puppet show of Thailand depicts the entire story (and/or episodes) of the Ramayana, adapted and sculpted according to localized traditions and sensibilities. A prayer is offered to Dasharatha and Sri Ramachandra before the show begins. In this play, Dasharatha’s capital is again the selfsame Ayodhya. A more enduring and endearing form of tracing cultural linkages to Sanatana Bharatavarsha cannot be found. The Ramkeen (Glory of Rama. Also spelled as Ramakien)drama was authored by the late medieval Thai king, Rama I and continued by his son, Rama II. Ramkeen (a corruption of the Sanskrit word, Ramakeerthi )is the national epic of Thailand. The name of Ravana in this epic is Thosakanath, a corruption of the word, DashakanTa (Ten-necked). The same reverence for the Ramayana is reflected in the religious, spiritual and artistic traditions and heritage of Java, Bali-Dwipa, and the Muslim-majority Indonesia. The awe-inspiring Prambanan Temple has the Ramayana story engraved on its walls. Its king, Sindak authored the Ramayana in the Javanese language. The Ramayana is not just a mere book or cultural heritage of Indonesia but is still regarded as a sacred work. I refer the interested reader to Dr. V. Raghavan’s extraordinary work, The Ramayana in Greater India for a brilliantly detailed exposition of this Ramayana tradition.
And there’s an entire story right there. Notice that scholars of Dr. Raghavan’s vintage used the term “Greater India” (or Brihad-Bharata), and not the horribly politicized geographical eunuch, “South East Asia.”
And so, if these tiny island-countries feel such pride in their own Ramayana heritage, and Bharatavarsha, the original home of the Ramayana, took twenty-seven long years to finally obtain what is known as a “judgement,” what message are we as a civilization sending out to foreigners who continue to value and treasure our heritage, who have owned it in such a lovable fashion? What is a Thai or a Malay or a Javanese person supposed to feel when they learn that Indian Hindus have written, performed and sung copious amounts of abuse and obscenity against their own heroes and revered figures in the Ramayana? This is what they feel: don’t these Indian Hindus have any shame at all? The answer to this shamelessness, again, is found in Nawab Nehru’s inveterate Hindu hatred which reared its ugliest head during the reconstruction of the grand Somanatha Temple. In a line, two generations of the Lutyens-Secular-Left-Liberal galaxy have only been Nehruizing throughout the run up to the recent Ayodhya judgement.
The aforementioned contrast can also be couched in a single question: for over five hundred years, Thailand, Java, Sumatra, Cambodia, Indonesia etc have imported, adapted, celebrated, and continue to preserve the grand tradition of Srimad Ramayana. In the last seventy-plus years, the most celebrated import of “independent” India is Sunny Leone.
There’s no Sri Ramachandra without the Ramayana and there’s no Ramayana without Maharshi Valmiki. Needless, one only needs to understand the Hrudaya (heart) of Maharshi Valmiki in order to understand the Ramayana. Which poses another fundamental question: is the Ramayana a work to be understood in an intellectual sense? But before we can approach an answer to this question, let it be unequivocally, unapologetically stated that even if all literary works of India are destroyed, Sanatana Bharatavarsha’s cultural soul can be recovered and reconstructed on the basis of just Srimad Ramayana. This is also precisely why our secularist cultural vandals outdo their own previous records of degeneracy of demonizing the Ramayana. Think about it: how did Sri Ramachandra who, till just two generations ago was generally revered even by urban Hindus, has become a misogynist and a symbol of Brahminical patriarchy (sic)?
The answer to how we can “understand” the Ramayana is embedded in the hundreds of verses of the Ramayana itself. I have selected one and half verses at random. (Sarga 19: Ayodhya Kanda)
आभिषेचनिकम् भाण्डम् क्ऱ्त्वा रामः प्रदक्षिणम् |
शनैः जगाम सापेक्षो द्ऱ्ष्टिम् तत्र अविचालयन् || 31 ||
लोक कान्तस्य कान्तत्वम् शीत रश्मेर् इव क्षपा || 32 ||
Rama reverentially circumambulated around the auspicious materials collected for his proposed coronation and having fixed his attention respectfully on them, slowly moved away from them. (31)
The loss of kingdom could not diminish the great splendour of Rama as night cannot diminish the splendid illumination of the moon. (32)
Countless such verses provide just a mere glimpse into the Atman of Sanatana Bharatavarsha. Sri Ramachandra’s apparent loss of being coronated as the Emperor of Ayodhya culminated in a series of extraordinary gains for every place he set foot during the course of his long exile. His journey re-sanctified the sacred geography of Bharatavarsha with each place claiming that it was purified by his feet. There is a profound reason Maharshi Valmiki titled his immortal work Ramayana, the Journey of Sri Ramachandra. One wonders whether it was an exile or an enduring national pilgrimage of which he was the pioneer.
This singular act of Sri Ramachandra gladly forsaking the highest office of political power in service of an invisible Higher Ideal or Dharma is a lesson deeply embedded in the Sanatana DNA whether we’re conscious of its presence or no. And so, would such a Sri Ramachandra really need a temple? While the answer from this perspective is no, it is also an emphatic, undeniable yes if this Sanatana DNA has to survive. Indeed, it is in service of this ideal—vulgarized beyond belief and taste after “independence”—that the sustained Tapas (which literally means, “to burn”) and extraordinary sacrifices of countless Hindus over hundreds of generations ultimately culminated in the recent Supreme Court judgement. This judgement is the real key that has conclusively opened the gates to and inaugurated a civilizational landmark.
Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi had merely opened the lock of a physical structure in 1986. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has taken it to its next logical civilizational step in 2019.
To be continued
The Dharma Dispatch is now available on Telegram! For original and insightful narratives on Indian Culture and History, subscribe to us on Telegram.