” Ma nishadaprathishtam thwamagassasswathee sama

Yad krownchamidunadekam avadee kamamohitham”

The screaming in unbearable anguish, by one of the krowncha birds left alive and alone, after her male partner was shot down by a hunter while indulging in innocent love-making, on the banks of the Thamasa stream, inundated the sage Valmiki with immeasurable pain and along with the pearls of tears that flew from his eyes, emanated from the cavern of his compassionate heart an effluence of poetic extravaganza which turned into the second Ganges to give solace and salvation to several souls.

Killing a bird or an animal is matter of routine in the forest and in his previous avatar, Valmiki  himself would have decimated ruthlessly hundreds of lives and looted belongings of  unexpected hapless victims. For a person for whom tormenting others was a habit and profession, another hunter’s act should not have created even a ripple in his heart. But, he is now,  no more Ratnakara, the dreaded hunter and highway robber that he was, once. He is now Maharishi Valmiki, who has come out of the ant-hill, his soul purified by constant chanting of the name of the ocean of compassion and his every tiny cell in his blood, bones and skin regenerated and refined by the slashing rains, slaughtering heat and savage cold. .

That is the reward of ‘THAPASYA’, dedicating one’s body and soul to a great cause, with unwavering mind and unpolluted sincerity.

Sir. C.V.Raman, was one of the chief guests in the golden jubilee celebration of the Osmania University, Hyderabad in June 1967 and  as a P.G. Diploma student in French and German, I had the fortune of meeting and hearing him.  He gave a guest lecture on diamonds. At the end of the lecture, a science graduate stood up and asked, “Sir, you have discussed the different aspects of the nature of diamonds but you have not shown us how to make the diamonds?”

Sir Raman retorted immediately, “It is quite easy. Take a piece of charcoal, bury it one thousand feet deep in the bowls of earth and wait for one thousand years

There was gleeful clapping in the hall. His message was loud and clear.

When the virus of Vulgar thoughts and vultures of vices slaughter one’s mind and body and his soul gets encapsulated in an ant-hill of ego and ignorance, the celestial melody awakens it, if there is a sincere prayer for liberation. Liberation is not flying into the land of angels, beyond the clouds. It is here, in this soil, where you live and grow. And every one of us turns into a piece of charcoal at one stage or other and get buried deep and deep into difficulties and distress, defamation and mental stress and it takes long, long time for our conversion into diamond.

Osho offers a helping hand :

“It is such a tremendous phenomenon to face oneself. You will need all your energies. .It is such an absorbing job; it cannot be done half-heartedly—And the God is available only when you are unburdened”

Unburdened? How?

Osho also  suggests a way:

“”Life is like a play-don’t make it a business; otherwise you will miss it. Play well, but don’t think in terms of achieving something out of it. Just be like a child. He plays, he is not worried what he achieves out of it. Small children, even if they are defeated in a game, jump and play very well, feel happy. Failure is not a failure even if it is only a play. Otherwise, if it is business, even victory is a defeat. You are victorious but nothing has been achieved. You longed for this goal so much and now you have reached it, but you simply feel frustrated and your whole life is lost. Remember, your life will be lost if you are after some goals, because life has no goals.  It is a purposeless play. It is not going anywhere, it is simply enjoying itself.

If there is purpose, all life will lose its poetry”

This man is talking nonsense, you may say.

Melpathur Mahakavi sings about such a  life full of poetry.

“Venunadakritha thanadana kala ganaraga gathi yogana-

Alopaneeya mridhu pada patha kritha thala melana manoharam

Panisamkwanitha kankanancha muhurasalambhitha karambujam,

Sronibimba chaladambharam bhajatha rasakeli rasa dambharam”

“For Lord Krishana, it is OK”  I hear Ammalu murmuring from the kitchen, “but if you enter the dance club, the doors of this house will be ever shut for you”

I am not unaware that symphony in our  life is more a dream than a reality but there are ways to lessen the sharpness of the thorns though we may not succeed in converting them into roses.

Is there any other  person who lived a more purposeful life than Lord Krishna, all the way smiling, singing and dancing though right from his birth in  captivity he was  hunted  by foes and  and haunted by problems, both of not his making. He never treated his life as serious but acted always seriously, with a smile on his face .  We enjoy that ‘Krishna Leela’ but when our three year old kid plays for  more than a couple of hours, we thrust a paper and pencil into his hand ask him to write ABCD!  We recite day and night Krishana’s dictum that we should work without worrying what we achieve out of it, but we are shattered the moment our child misses an entrance test.

Not that type, I am.  I go cranky only when  dosa refuses to get up from the iron tawa in one piece or my arthritic knees refuse to get straightened before the pressure cooker go to the alert mode for giving out the forth whistle.

Now you are getting impatient. ” Damn with your kitchen experience”   you scream.”There is ocean of difference between Osho and Valmiki. Why bring them together?”

While inhabited in the intensely inimical ambiance and  despite the damages  delivered on his body by the devilish insects and devouring natural elements, Ratnakara was floating in the bliss of the Lord. The celestial saint Narada, while inducting him into the path of devotion also passed on the melody of his Veena with the result that Ratnakara’s life was just a play, as Osho says.  Thereafter, when he came out of the ant hill, he did not become rigid, as would have happened in the normal course under the adverse atmosphere he was in. He could enjoy two birds flying  and love-making on the shore of the stream but got angry and cursed the hunter who separated the pair.   His humaneness was the biggest achievement of his thapas in the ant hill. And what is there in a human if he is not humane!

‘Ma Nishada!”

And what an ideal  beginning for a wonderful life story ! ” Ma nishada! No hunter, no”  That pleading, soaked in compassion and tinged with anger runs through out the great epic.

“Ma Kaikeyi, Ma Soorpanakha, Ma Mareecha, Ma Ravana, Ma kumbhkarna and ultimately  “Ma Ramachandra” -when his hero was about to throw his pregnant wife, the precious jewel which he recovered after great sacrifice,  into wild forest. But none heard his voice!

Valmiki could not prevent the disaster of the love birds but he could give shelter and  solace  to the heroin of his epic and thus  save the royal lineage, educate the children and serve to unite the broken royal couple. He was fortunate to receive a wonderful gift too- he could hear his own songs by the children trained by him who are none other than his hero’s sons and the ‘ arangettam’ (maiden exposition)  of the epic was in the court of Lord himself, in His royal presence!

Blessed was he and to receive such an honor, one  can spend a life time inside the anthill.

Hyderabad,

May 13, 2009

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