Made For Each Other - Part 15

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

This is in continuation of the offering titled,  "Made for Each Other". We have been meditating on how the divine couple Mother Sita and Lord Rama are perfectly aligned in terms of their thinking (abhimata dāmpaytam). Let us continue further.

Their oneness of thinking in accepting fallen souls is a great boon for all of us who are suffering in this material world. Actually, the scriptures tell us that every living entity who desires his ultimate good should surrender to the Lord in all humility. But our egoistic temperament does not allow to do so. The divine couple understands this very well and hence They say that even if we approach the Lord as a friend (for which we are not qualified at all), They will accept us. This was stated by Lord Rama when Vibheeshana approached Him for surrender. In Ramayana, Yuddha khanda verse 18.3 the Lord said,

mitrabhāvena saṃprāptaṃ na tyajeyaṃ kathaṃcana
doṣo yady api tasya syāt satām etad agarhitam

I will never forsake anyone who comes with a friendly appearance, even if he has lot of faults. Accepting such a person is considered as perfect act by all saintly persons.

The acharyas explain the word 'mitra bhāvena' means even if one disguises himself as a friend to the Lord (not having true friendship in the heart), the Lord still accepts him and corrects him gradually. A typical example was Sugriva. Sugruiva did not surrender to the Lord accepting Him as his master. He called Lord as friend only. Also while accepting the Lord as friend, Sugriva was having lot of doubts about Lord Rama's power to kill Vali. Also he came to the Lord with a motive to get his kingdom back. He gave Lord Rama some tests to believe His power and the Lord kindly accepted all the tests to create faith in Sugriva. Also after Vali was killed and Sugriva got the kingdom back, he forgot that he should help Rama in finding Mother Sita. He started enjoying the kingdom completely forgetting the Lord. The Lord reprimanded and corrected him through Lakshmana and brought him back to His service. But He never forsook him.

This attitude of the Lord was well known to Sita even though She was not present during these incidents. Because of their oneness of thinking, Mother Sita exactly gave the same advice to Ravana in Lanka. When Ravana was forcing her to yield to his sinful desires, Sita advised him as follows:

Ramayana 5.21.20-21
viditaḥ sa hi dharmajna śaraṇāgatavatsalaḥ tena maitrī
bhavatu te yadi jīvituṃ icchasi prasādayasva tvam cainan śaraṇāgatavatsalam

Lord Rama is a true knower of religious principles and great lover of those who surrender to Him. If you desire to live, then please establish a friendly relation with Him and seek His grace, who is the lover of surrendered souls.

We can see that both in the words of Sita and Rama, the word, "friendship" is common. Though Ravana did a heinous crime and the only way to rectify is the surrender to Lord Rama, Mother Sita did not advise him to surrender. This is because She understood that Ravana will not take this advice because of his egoistic nature. So She advised, "No problem. If you cannot surrender, at least try to call Rama as your friend and establish a relation with Him." In this way, Mother Sita was willing to advice and correct even a person like Ravana. And She was also sure that Lord will accept anyone who approaches Him, calling as a friend. They were many miles away while speaking these statements. But we can see that their words are in complete sync. So in this matter of accepting fallen people despite their ego, Lord Rama and Sita displayed astounding oneness of thinking.

Lord Rama willing we shall see the concluding part in the subsequent offering.

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