I wrote this some time back :
Its Dussehra or call it Vijaya Dashmi. The same story is going to repeat itself once again this year too. I had been reading it since my school days – Burai par Achchai ki jeet ka tyohaar – victory of goodness over evil.
The jubilant crowds gathering at local parks to watch the three brothers go up in flames, the same burning of effigies and lots of fireworks. The fatal arrow aimed towards Ravana will burst him to pieces, yet another time.
This time, I am sad. I am sad for Ravana. I am not a learned person, just have the same knowledge of Ramayana, as anyone who grew up reading it as a text book in school, and watching the very famous serial of Ramanand Sagar, ‘The Ramayana’ on TV. That’s all I know, that’s all I understand of Rama and Ravana.
Although, while going through articles on internet, just before writing this I read many stories. One said, Sita was his daughter in some way. another said, why he did not force himself on Sita, because, he had a curse that if he will force himself on any woman, then his ten heads would fall off.All in all he was a learned person, who was aggressive and his biggest mistake was that this time, he fell for Sita.
But, still am feeling bad for him today. Not much for his brother Kumbhkarna and son Meghnaada, as they gave up their lives for their brother, their king and their State. But Ravana, what was his fault really? Eying another man’s wife? that’s it? Then in that case there is a Ravana in each one of us, whether we admit or not.
Now, you will say, he abducted another man’s wife, well yes, that was his fault. But then, look at the character that he possessed. He did not even touch Sita. While Sita sat in the Vatika with all her pride and vanity, Ravana respected her, and pronounced that he could wait. A woman in her kidnapper lover’s home, yet safe from him. I know, i have made it sound very crass, but well that’s what it was.
On the other hand, Rama did not trust his wife, we all know it. She was put through a kind of ‘Sach Ka Samna’!! Yet, Sita had the heart to love and keep loving the man who distrusted her, and that too publicly. While Ravana could destroy everything and give up his life for the passion of a woman, Rama had a different set of priorities. The honour, the prestige, the respect in the eyes of his fellowmen and women was greater, much much greater than his love for his wife. And Sita was shown the door. Rest we all know.
Coming to the present times now, the common man of today, harbours both a Rama and a Ravana in his soul. Rama, not because he is so virtuous, but because even today the family honour is greater than his love. For an average man, even today the opinion of his fellow beings, the so called ‘society’, still has more weightage. Lets accept it, there is a Ravana in all of us, as passion sees no boundaries, love does not check the marital status before it knocks your door and desire doesnot know the meaning of morality. The degree, the grade, the potency may differ, but still there is a little bit of Ravana in each one of us, howsoever, socially moral our conduct may be.
Still, Ravana will be burnt again, this year too. Now I wonder, he is being punished for having a desire like that and confusing it with love, or for the abduction of another man’s wife, or for fighting for a woman or for fighting with an Avatar of God? Whatever the reason is. I feel, if only Ravana understood what love was, and that it can never be gained through force, there would not have been a War like that. And if, we in our moments of silence would have realised that, there lives a Ravana in us, then at least we would feel some mercy of those effigies erected each year to be blasted into pieces.
Its easier said than done, but still, i want to finish it like this, that may we have the power to blast off that Ravana from our hearts!