Hearing about Lord Rama - Part 7

Hearing about Lord Rama - Part 7

Narahari Krishna das

Hare Krishna Prabhujis and Matajis,
Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudeva.

This is in continuation of the previous offering titled, "Hearing about Lord Rama", wherein we saw about Hanumanji's attraction for hearing about Lord Rama. Now we shall see further.

At the time of Rama's coronation, Hanumanji asked for the benediction to chant and hear Rama’s name always. Sugriva, Hanumanji and Vibheeshana and some of their followers stayed in Ayodhya for more than a month in the company of Lord Rama, after coronation. After this period, Lord Rama bid farewell to all His associates who helped Him in the war and gave them gifts. And while Hanuman was about to leave Ayodhya, Hanuman once again asked for three benedictions 

1. Firm and exclusive devotion to Lord Rama  (Rama bhakti). 
2. Very long life in the earth till the pastimes of Rama are chanted (Chiranjeevi) and 
3. Fortune of hearing the Rama lila always. (shravanam about Lord Rama).

 So he asked for the below benediction once again from Lord Rama. Previously he asked about hearing the name. This time he asked benediction of hearing the form and activities of Rama (Valmiki Ramayana 7.30.16).

yāvat rāma kathā veera charśyati mahitale
tāvat śarire vatsyantu prānā mama na samśayah

"O My heroic Sri Rama, may life continue in my body without doubt as long as your story (Rama katha) remains current on the surface of the earth."

Thus, Hanumanji wanted a long life only to hear about Rama. He wanted to stay on the earth as long as Rama's glories are present. Once the glories are not chanted anymore, Hanumanji did not want to remain here even for a second. The Bhagavata purana (verse 4.29.39-40) confirms this as follows. "My dear King, in the place where pure devotees live, following the rules and regulations and thus purely conscious and engaged with great eagerness in hearing and chanting the glories of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, in that place if one gets a chance to hear their constant flow of nectar, which is exactly like the waves of a river, one will forget the necessities of life, namely hunger and thirst, and become immune to all kinds of fear, lamentation and illusion."

Here Hanuman teaches by his personal example, that one should always seek out the opportunities to hear and glorify the Lord. He also teaches that life on earth is valuable only as long as we hear about the Supreme Lord. So he teaches us that we should also pray to the Lord that as long as we live, we should always the have the opportunity to hear the Lord's glories and capacity in the ear to hear. Srila Prabhupada explains the effect of hearing for aspiring devotees like us. - "If one gets the chance to hear from pure devotees in such a place, allowing the constant flow of the river of nectar to come from the mouths of pure devotees, then the cultivation of Krishna consciousness becomes very easy. When one is engaged in constantly hearing the glories of the Lord, he certainly rises above the bodily conception. When one is in the bodily conception, he feels the pangs of hunger and thirst, fear, lamentation and illusion. But when one is engaged in hearing and chanting the glories of the Lord, he transcends the bodily conception."

Hanuman is already liberated from all material dualities but still wanted to hear the Lord’s glories. By this he teaches that hearing about the Lord attracts even liberated souls. Srila Prabhupada explains the in the purport of the above verse "The word bhagavad-gunaanuthana-shravaṇa-vyagra-cetasah, meaning 'always eager to find the place where the glories of the Lord are being heard and chanted,' is significant in this verse. A businessman is always very eager to go to a place where business is transacted. Similarly, a devotee is very eager to hear from the lips of liberated devotee". anuman teaches here that the bliss of hearing is higher than any material enjoyment on this earth.

We will mediate further on the benedictions asked by Hanuman in the next offering, Krishna willing.

Thank you very much,
Yours in service of Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudeva
Narahari Krishna das