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Rama remembers Guha on His return to AyodhyA

From: Madhavakkannan V (srivaishnavan_at_hotmail.com)
Date: Tue Jan 08 2002 - 19:05:30 PST

SrI:
SrImathE Gopaladesika Mahadesikaya namah:
Dearest Srivaishnavas,

Sri Hari Krishnan has joined our list. Thanks to Sri Hari Kirishnan for 
heeding to my request for joining the list. As mentioned earlier, he has 
been writing brilliantly in religion column daily:

http://www.chennaionline.com/festivalsnreligion/religion/religion389.asp
This one attacted me today while reading.(His everyday's post does attract 
me too).

I have reproduced it for your enjoyment on this auspicious Ekadasi dhinam 
(on orutthi magannAy piRandhu naaL)

That is the last scene where we see Guha talking and interacting with 
others. He departs to Srngaverapura after accompanying Bharata to Rama and 
after Bharata takes the sandals of Rama back to Ayodhya. He appears in just 
four cantos (padalam) in the second book. There is no mention of him 
anywhere after that, till we reach the end of Yuddha Kanda.
This happens in the Valmiki Ramayana. When returning from Lanka after 
slaying Ravana and installing Vibishana as the king, Rama returns to Ayodhya 
in the pushpaka vimana and stays for a while in Bharadwaja Ashrama. He 
realises that the time of fourteen years have passed and Bharata and others 
would be waiting for him and that it is necessary for someone to take the 
message of his return, before he reaches Ayodhya, as they were getting 
delayed in Bharadwaja Ashrama.

He therefore summons Hanuman to take the message of his arrival to Bharata. 
Let’s see how Valmiki’s Rama starts his speech.
“Moving with all speed to Ayodhya, O jewel among monkeys, quickly find out 
if people in the royal palace are happy. Reaching Srngaverapura (earlier) 
communicate in my name my welfare to Guha, the suzerain lord of Nisadas, who 
dwells in the woods. Guha will feel actually delighted to hear of me as 
being safe and sound and free from anxiety. He is my friend, as good as my 
own self.” (Valmiki Ramayana, Yuddha Kanda, Canto CXXV, Sloka 4, 5)
‘Go to Ayodhya and announce my arrival. But before that go to Srngaverapura, 
inform Guha that I am safe and am returning.’ That is simply astounding. It 
is this simpleton that Rama is thinking of - even after the passage of 
fourteen long, long years - and attaching so much importance to him that he 
wants the message to be taken to Guha first, even before Bharata.
It was Bharata who is spending anxious days at Nandigrama and it is only 
natural that he gets the priority in receiving the message. But Rama the 
merciful, Rama the boundless who is bound by a fragile thread, love and 
devotion, feels that Guha should receive the message first. “He is my 
friend, as good as my own self,” he says.

Let alone emperors. How many of us would remember a simple boatman who did 
nothing in our lives, excepting showing devotion at a point of time, when 
our lives move in turbulence, turmoil and travail for a long time - fourteen 
years in the case of Rama, the last year and a little more being the most 
excruciating of them. Just try to recollect the number of smiling 
cabdrivers, friendly bus conductors and such other persons who came into our 
lives for a while, did nothing more than expressing a deep devotion, 
interaction with whom is limited to less than a week. How many of us would 
give him the place of importance that Rama gave to Guha?

Guha is a very minor character. He does not contribute anything to the 
development of events excepting that he is a boatman who ferried Rama and 
Bharata across the Ganga. But Rama does not forget him and the special 
relationship he developed with Guha. He wants to ensure that his devotee is 
rid of all worries first, superseding the natural right that his devout and 
devoted brother. That is something very extraordinary and may be it has a 
lesson for us all.

Thanks for his excellent write up. May Lord Sri Rama Bless him..
Regards
Namo Narayana
aDiyEn dAsan

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