|| Sarga 26 ||

|| Tattva Dipika ||

||om tat sat||

Sarga 26

Sita's sorrow.

In the fifteenth and sixteenth Sargas we see the description of Sita in sorrow.
' Sita was like a flame of fire obscured by a cloud of smoke,
like a text of Smriti of doubtful meaning,
like a thrown away treasure,
like a lost faith,
like a hope obstructed,
like a success inhibited,
like vitiated intellect,
like a fame soiled by false allegation.'
That was Valmiki's description of Sita in sorrow

In this Sarga , we hear from Sita in her sorrow through Valmiki.
"अहम् जीवितुं न उत्सहे"
"I have no interest in living"

Why? We hear from Sita.

"When Raghava was away ,
I was brought forcibly here while crying by Ravana who can take any form.
Being under the control of the Rakshasis,
being dreadfully threatened ,
worrying and overcome with grief,
living in the middle of Rakshasa women,
there is no meaning for this life without the great charioteer Rama.
Neither wealth nor the ornaments matter."

Then what are the reasons for being alive? Sita continues.

" May be my heart is surely made of stone,
or it has no age or death since it is not riven with grief.
That without him I am protecting this life even for a moment is improper.
I am an infidel, a woman of sinful life.
Fie on me.
Without the sweet tongued Lord of the earth,
What is the point in pleasure or happiness".

What is Sita's conclusion?
Sita continues.

"I will leave this body.
Cut me to pieces, or eat me up.
Without my dear husband,
I cannot bear this sorrow for too long.
I cannot touch this vile night roamer Ravana even with my left foot.
Where is the question of loving him.
This man of cruel nature who wants to plead with me,
he is not aware of his own loss of fame.
Nor the loss of his family.
Whether cut or broken into pieces, or burnt by fire
I will not accept Ravana."

Then again Sita's thoughts move on to Rama, who is ever present in her heart

"Raghava is renowned as wise grateful and well behaved.
I doubt that kind hearted one became pitiless due to my misfortune".

"The one who killed fourteen thousand Rakshasas in Janasthana ,
why is he not protecting me?"

"The one who killed Viradha, the bull among Rakshasa in a fight in the Dandaka forest,
why is he not protecting me".

"I am held captive by this Rakshasa of inferior valor.
My husband is surely capable of killing Ravana in a battle".

"This Lanka in the middle of the sea is impregnable.
But nothing can resist Rama's arrows.
Why is highly powerful Rama is not able to reach his dear wife abducted by the Rakshasa'

"The elder brother of Lakshmana does not know that I am here.
I doubt whether that the glorious one would tolerate this after knowing that outrageous act"

"That king of vultures knows that I am abducted and hence can tell Rama.
But he has been killed by Ravana in the fight.
That Jatayu who, though old ,stood by me in the duel with Ravana did a great help".

"If that Rama knows that I am here ,
then being angry he would have made this world free of Rakshasas.
He will blow away the city of Lanka.
He will drain the oceans.
He will destroy the name and fame of that evil Ravana".
So on,.

Sita while engaged in wordy duel with Ravana said
"तपसश्च अनुपालनात्"
meaning " following the conduct of an ascetic"
" I am not burning you down".

With Ravana not being around ,
feeling no such restraint to assert her superiority,
Sita was unable to control her anger.
We now hear her words of anger.
The angry words of an ascetic come out sounding like curses.
Sita's words here are also like that.

"I will soon see Rakshasa women who lost their husbands crying in every house like me.
I have no doubt."

"If only Rama along with Lakshmana search this Lanka,
the enemies cannot stand in their sight even for a moment".

"This Lanka will soon be like a cremation ground,
with its streets covered with smoke and vultures flying around."

"In this Lanka such inauspicious signs are seen,
and very soon Lanka will lose its splendor".

"When the mean sinner the Rakshasa Ravana is killed ,
this impregnable Lanka will wither away like a widow".

" the city of Lanka which had many auspicious celebrations,
having lost the king will remain like a woman with the death of her husband."

" Very soon I will surely hear the sounds of distress,
distressful cries of Rakshasa women from every house".

"The city of Lanka will be totally burnt filled with darkness losing its splendor
and all the Rakshasa warriors will be killed by the arrows of Rama."

"If the heroic Rama with blood shot eyes knows that I am in the Ravana's palace ,
the time limit which has been set by this lowly person Ravana has now arrived,
the death fixed by this vile person is his own death".

"These sinners do not know the forbidden acts.
Due to improper acts great calamities will happen".

Again Sita's thoughts turn towards her own state

"These flesh eating Rakshasas do not know righteous conduct.
These Rakshasas will definitely make a morning meal of me.
What can I do without the Rama who is pleasing to the eyes.
Unable to see the one with reddish tinge in his eyes,
I am distressed very much"..

" If there is a person who can give poison is here,
I am ready to see the Lord of death without my lord ".

"A charming lady that I am ,
and that I am able to live without Rama ,
does it mean that some qualities are not in me?
Is my fortune diminished?
It is better for me to die instead of living separated from the great soul Rama
who is of blemish less character, who is heroic, who can destroy his enemies."
"That Rama the elder brother of Lakshmana does not know that I am alive.
If they knew they would not have left searching for me all over".
"Probably the heroic elder brother of Lakshmana left his body on the earth in distress ,
and surely went to the abode of gods.
Seeing my husband who has eyes like that of lotus petals,
the gods along with the Gandharvas, Siddhas and the great sages will indeed be blessed.
Or else the royal sage , the wise one , the supreme self ,
always seeking dharma, may have lost interest in me his wife "

Losing interest in ones wife means one is no longer pursuing Dharma as applied to a householder,
or may have developed indifference to worldly objects and life.
Ramayana Tilaka adds the following comment.

" एतेन भार्या विना धर्मसिद्धिर् न भवति इति ध्वनितम्।
अनेन वैराग्यादग्रवृत्तिरिति सूचितम्।
तथाच श्रुतिः " यत् कर्तव्यं तदनया सह"

This implies that without wife pursuit of Dharma ( householder) is not possible.
Also implies possibility of "Vairagya".
That is why Srutis say-
" What is to be done shall be done with wife by his side ",
thus establishing the primacy of wife in Grihasta Ashrama.

Sita continues her thoughts.

"Or else those two brother best among men ,
laid down their arms and are roaming the forest as ascetics living on fruits and roots".

"Or else the two heroic brothers would have been killed by that cruel deceptive Ravana.
In these times by all means I wish to die.
In this sorrow even the death seems to be not possible".

"Separated from Rama who is a realized self,
being under the control of the sinner Ravana,
I will give up this life".

Thus we hear myriad thoughts of agitated Sita through Valmiki.

Yogavasishta is a dialog is between Rama and sage Vasistha.
Origin of the dialog is the fundamental query of why so much sorrow.
In that dialog we hear the following Sloka almost at the very end of that dialog with Vasishta.

बहुनात्र किं उक्तेन
संक्षेपाथ् इदं उच्यते।
संकल्पनं परो बन्धः
तद् अभावे विमुक्तता॥
" Why say so many words, briefly this can be told.
Imagination is the bondage, absence of the same is liberation"

Thus imagination is the cause of sorrow .
The overflowing thoughts in sorrow simply multiply the sorrow many fold ,
That is precisely what we see here .

Here the Sita's thoughts swing from one end to the other.
"Rama Lakshmana may be thinking that she is dead".
"Tricky Ravana may have killed Rama and Lakshmana",
"Rama may have developed Vairagya and given up on her"

As if making the point that one should face sorrows and joys with equanimity,
Valmiki makes us hear his thoughts from Sita.

"Great men who have given up all sins,
the exalted ones who have won over the self,
and the sages are blessed .
For them the pleasure or displeasure does not exist.
Sorrow from a pleasing act ,
or fear from an unpleasant act does not happen to them.
Those who have distanced themselves from these dualities are great souls.
Salutations to them".

What ever be the sorrow or the pleasure ,
one has to remain unperturbed by these twin entanglements

That is the inner meaning we hear from twenty sixth Sarga.

|| om tat sat ||
|| This is what we understood from Tattva Dipika of Shri Bhashyam, Appalacharyulu garu"||
|| om tat sat||