This article is a chapter from the book Essence of Ramayana.
Blessed Immortal Self,
It gives me great pleasure to send you this short message on the celebration of the Ramanavami day.
Lord Rama was the prince of the Ikshvaku race. He was virtuous and of manly strength. He was the Lord of the mind and the senses. Brave and valiant, he was yet gentle and modest. He was a sage in counsel, kind and sweet in speech and most courteous, and handsome in appearance. He was the master of divine weapons, and a great Atiratha. Ever devoted to the good and prosperity of his kingdom, he was a defender of the weak and the protector of Dharma. Endowed with wondrous powers of the mind, he was well versed in all sciences, in the science of arms or Dhanurvidya, as well as in the science of the Self.
Deep and unfathomable like the ocean, firm and steadfast like the Himalayas, valiant like Vishnu, he was the joy of Kausalya. Though fierce like fire on the battle-field, he was calm like the cool breeze of the Mandara Hills, patient like Mother Earth, bounteous like Kubera and righteous like Dharma, the Lord of justice himself. In pains or griefs of his people his heart swiftly sympathised with the sufferer. In the festive scenes which held them in joy, he, like a father shared their joy. By his honour and heroism, as well as by his gentleness and love for his subjects, he endeared himself to the heart of his people. Such a great Lord, Rama was, and his birthday which you are celebrating today, is equally great and auspicious to us all.
The Name of Sri Rama is sweeter than the sweetest objects. It is the haven of peace. It is the very life of pure souls. It is the purifier of all purifying agencies. It quenches the consuming fire of worldly desires. It awakens the knowledge of God which is dormant in our hearts. It bathes the aspirant in the ocean of divine bliss. Glory to Sri Rama and His Name.
Blessed is the pious soul who drinks uninterrupted the nectar of Sri Rama’s Name, which has been churned out of the ocean of the Vedas, which removes the impurities of Kali Yuga or the iron age, which lives constantly on the tongue of Lord Siva, which is a sovereign remedy or unfailing specific to cure the disease of worldly existence and is life itself to mother Janaki.
Tulsidas says, “Name is even superior to the Lord because the Aguna and Saguna aspects are tasted and realised by the power of Name. Rama delivered from the curse a single lady, Ahalya, whereas His Name has purified crores of wicked men! Rama gave salvation to two of his faithful servants, Jatayu and Sabari, but the Name has been the saviour of countless wicked persons.”
He further says, “The two sweet fascinating letters RA and MA are like the two eyes of the alphabet and the very life-breath of the devotees. They are easy to remember and delightful to all. They are beneficial in this world and sustain us in the other world.” He tells the Sadhaka thus: “Put this jewel—Light of Rama-Nama at the gate of your door—the tongue, if you want to illuminate yourself, both inside and outside. All the world knows that by uttering the Name even in the opposite way, as ‘Mara, Mara’ instead of Rama, Rama’, the great saint Valmiki became Brahman Himself.” When such is the glory of the repetition of the Lord’s Name in the opposite way, then what to speak of the utterance of the right and proper Name!
The means by which Sri Rama can be reached is to take His Name and to remain saturated in it. Always remain drunk, imbibing the Lord’s sweet Name. Let no ideas of purity or impurity enter your mind. There is no unholy object in this world. Should there be any, it becomes the holiest of the holy by contact with the Lord’s Name. Illusion, notwithstanding all her efforts, fails to get hold of him who remains deeply absorbed in the Lord’s Name and love. Glory to Lord Rama! Adorations to Sri Rama! Prostrations to Sri Rama!
Lord Rama was Maryada Purushottama. He was a Prema Moorti. He was an ideal son, an ideal brother, an ideal husband, an ideal friend and an ideal king. He can be taken to embody all the highest ideals of man. He led an ideal life of a householder to teach humanity. He ruled his people so nicely that his rule came to be called “Rama Rajya,” meaning “the rule of righteousness,” the rule which bestows on all happiness and prosperity.
May Lord Rama bestow his choicest blessings on you all! May he protect you all and bless you! May you all live drowned in the ocean of divine ecstasy through constant repetition of Lord Rama’s Name.
May peace be unto all! May prosperity be unto all! May happiness be unto all! Let us all sing:
Om Sri Ram Jaya Ram Jaya Jaya Ram,
Om Sri Ram Jaya Ram Jaya Jaya Ram.