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Sri Rama and the bhakta frog

From: psrinivasan99 (
Date: Sun Feb 03 2002 - 22:36:32 PST

I came across a story that illustrates how a prapanna of Narayana 
should view suffering.
It was the time when Sri Rama was on the shores of the samudram 
during the preparations for the cross-over. Having supervised the 
bridge construction for long, Sri Rama wanted to take some rest. 
Hence He removed His bows and arrows from His shoulders, dropped 
them on the ground and lay Himself for some time. When He got up and 
took his bows and arrows from the ground, He was shocked to see some 
blood on the tip of one of His arrows. The Ocean of Compassion that 
He was, He immediately knelt down on the shore to find the source of 
the blood. He found to His sadness a small frog in great pain, with 
blood oozing out from its back and with its tearful eyes looking at 
the form of Sri Rama. Thereupon the Ocean of Mercy asked, "Dear 
frog, I am extremely sorry to have caused you this pain unknowingly. 
May you please excuse Me. But why is it that you did not cry out 
immediately when My arrow fell on your back? I could have 
immediately removed your suffering." The little frog said "Sri Rama, 
whenever I am afflicted by the threefold suffering that is natural 
to all embodied beings in Samsara, I am used to crying out to you 
as 'Hey Rama, Ocean of Compassion, Refuge of the refugeless'. When 
the arrow dropped on my back, I was about to cry out in the same 
manner when I chanced to look up to see what had hit me. But when I 
found that it was You who had inflicted upon me this suffering, I 
took Your arrow-hit as Your prasadam and silently withstood the 
pain." Moved on hearing the response of the frog, the sole Refuge of 
the Universe found tears welling up in His eyes. And with His sin-
destroying hands He caressed the back of the frog with great 
affection just as He had caressed Prahlada eons back.
This story moved me to tears and taught me how a genuine bhakta of 
Vishnu should look at the sufferings he undergoes in his samsaric 
journey. I was also reminded of Sri Kulashekara Alvar's decad of 
paasurams on Vithuvakkottamma that go on similar lines.


           - SrImate rAmAnujAya namaH -
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