Rama Neeti

रामो राजमणि: सदा विजयते रामं रमेशं भजे रामेणाभिहता निशाचरचमू रामाय तस्मै नम: रामान्नास्ति परायणं परतरं रामस्य दासोस्म्यहम् रामे चित्तलय: सदा भवतु मे भो राम मामुद्धर ||
रामरक्षा स्तोत्र

Rama, the jewel among the kings, Him I worship, by Him the hordes demons have been destroyed, to him is said my prayer, beyond Him there is nothing to be worshiped, His servant I am, my mind is totally absorbed in Him, O Ram, please lift me up. 

The specialty of this sloka is that it gives all the eight declensions of the singular word rAma. The composer of this great sloka is Rishi Budhakaushik.

Part 1

Rama’s advice to Lakhsmana (Agni Purana chapters 238 to 242)

Chapter 1 Ethics

Agni Purana summarized the teachings of Rama to Lakshmana on victory, ethics, and duties of King etc. The principles and subhashitani are brief here. If I could I will find the full subhashitani.

  • Wealth should be acquired by rightful means. It should be developed and guarded. It should be given to a deserving person.

These are four obligatory acts of the King. 

  • The commentary goes further to enunciate that Kingdom is part of King’s wealth and should be handed to a deserving person.

Ram is not in favor of Primogeniture.

Rama further stated in Valmiki Ramayana
अपि स्वर्णमयी लंका न मे रोचति लक्ष्मण |
जननी जन्मभूमिश्च स्वर्गादपि गरीयसी ||

  • Lakshman, This Golden Lanka does not allure me. Mother and Motherland is dearer to me even than heaven. Over thousands years ago, after the great Victory over Ravana, on the day of Vijayadashami, Lord Shree Ram tells Lakshmana that He was not interested in the wealth of Lanka and did never want to rule Lanka. He would rather go back to His Motherland.

उपार्जितानां वित्तानां त्याग एव हि रक्षणम् तडागोदरसंस्थानां परीवाह इवाम्भसाम्

  • Donating (part of) earned wealth is the best way to protect it. (Just like) allowing water to flow out of a lake is best way to keep the lake clean. Vibhishana gets Lanka as a donation from Rama

Bhojprabhandha adds:
मूर्खो न हि ददाति अर्थं नरो दारिद्रयशङ्कया |
प्राज्ञाम्प;: तु वितरति अर्थं नरो दारिद्रयशङ्कया ||

  • A unwise (‘murkha’) person hesitates to donate the wealth due to the fear of becoming poor in future. But due to the same fear (of becoming poor in future), a wise person wisely donates his wealth.

See how the same fear causes wise and unwise persons to behave differently! In conclusion the wise person donates his wealth thinking that in future if he becomes poor then he may loose the opportunity to donate. Man should not fear for the transient things like wealth. Today it is there and tomorrow it may not be there. So donate it when you have it!

  • Humility is the cause of Statesmanship. Humility is the resultant of determination from the scriptures as well as the control of senses. The King should guard the earth endowed with these.

Chanakya comments on this:
आपदां कथित: पन्था: इन्दि्रयाणाम् असंयम: |
तद्जय: संपदां मार्ग: येनेष्टं तेन गम्यताम् ||

  • Being under the command of our senses/mind is nothing but invitation to many problems and winning over them is a pathway to the glory/success!

Krishna also commented on himself:
ध्यायतो विषयान् पुंस: संगस्तेषूपजायते |
संगात् संजायते काम: कामात् क्रोधोऽभिजायते || – भगवद्गीता

  • “While contemplating the objects of the senses, a person develops attachment for them, and from such attachment lust develops, and from lust anger arises”.

When such desire is not fulfilled, then there comes anger in the heart (due to frustration of the desire) Therefore the best policy is to not even think about the sense objects and thus live simply and happily. For, the more one thinks, the more one desires; the more one desires, the more one gets frustrated, and the more one gets frustrated, the more one gets angry.

  • Scriptures, Knowledge, Fortitude, Dexterity, Proficiency, Reticence, Energy, eloquence, generosity, endurance under distress, greatness, purity, amity, renunciation, truthfulness gratitude, good family, good conduct, self-control are the qualities of gaining fortune.

Here Ram was presupposing Yudhishthara
धॄति: क्षमा दमोऽस्तेयं शौचमिन्द्रियनिग्रह: |
धीर्विद्या सत्यमक्रोधो दशकं धर्मराजलक्षणम् ||

  • Fortitude, Generosity, self control, Energy , endurance under distress, purity, renunciation, intelligence, learning, truth, good conduct (these) ten qualities constitute the characteristics of ‘Dharmaraja’.

  • The elephant of senses running uncontrolled in the forest of diverse pleasures should be controlled with goad of knowledge.
    – There are like hundred of subhashitani on this alone.
  • A king should give up an aggregate of these six things, lust, anger, greed, delight, pride and arrogance. The king who rejects these would be happy.
  • A king being endowed with modesty should contemplate on metaphysics, the three Vedas, emissary and polity with those well versed in these and those practicing them.

Chanakya also mentions the same in Arthashastra.
Also, in Mahabharata,
काव्यशास्त्रविनोदेन कालो गच्छति धीमताम् |
व्यसनेन च मूर्खाणां निद्रया कलहेन वा ||

  • An intelligent man spends his time in the research and studies of literature and metaphysics. The said subjects are means of his entertainment. The King should develop these as his means of entertainment.

Need for right people practicing that knowledge

अनेकशास्त्रं बहुवेदितव्यम् अल्पश्च कालो बहवश्च विघ्ना: यत् सारभूतं तदुपासितव्यं हंसो यथा क्षीरमिवाम्भुमध्यात्

  • There are many ‘shastraas’ (topics of study, doctrines) and abundance of knowledge. We have limited time and many obstacles. As swan (haMsaH) extracts milk from mixture of milk and water, those well versed in shastras get and communicate the essence. Also as one person has limited time, King needs to cultivate a set of scholars to get all the information he needs, all the view points.
  • The knowledge about true nature of things is obtained through metaphysics. Virtue and Vice rest on the Three Vedas. Material prosperity and misfortune depend on emissary and justice and injustice on polity.

An important indicator that these teachings are Rama’s own words is the mention and focus on Three Vedas. Veda Vyas has not created the Fourth Veda yet. Rama knew of Three Vedas. Eternal one, Atharva Angirasa and the one created by Ravana.

  • Abstaining from killing or causing injury to beings, courteous language, truthfulness, purity, kindness and forbearance are the general virtues of the religious students.
  • King should show compassion to all beings and practice codes of conduct. Courteous words, compassion, charity and protection of one that has sought refuge are the acts of good people agreeable to pious men. Which king would do impious acts for the sake of the body that is encompassed today or tomorrow? One should never oppress the poor and needy people desiring one’s own happiness.
  • A poor man on being oppressed kills the king (merits of the king) by means of his anger. A king desiring his own good should conduct with more humility than that shown to a respectful kinsman with folded palms. One should always speak only in a pleasing manner to friends and foes.
  • Those who speak pleasingly are gods and those who speak harsh are animals. One should always worship gods with cleanliness and get purified with piety.
  • The preceptors should be respected as gods and friends as one’s own selves. The preceptor should be pleased by bowing down. The favorable pious men should be pleased by doing true gestures and services. The gods should be pleased by good deeds. A friend should be attracted by courteousness and kinsman by showing respect.
  • The wife should be pleased by showing affection. Servants by making gifts and affection. The rest of the people should be won by showing compassion. Not reviling the good acts of others, maintaining to do one’s duties, kindness towards poor, sweet words towards all, helping a true friend even by sacrificing life, receiving warmly the person that has come to the house, making a gift according to one’s ability, forbearance, absence of pride in prosperity, not jealous at other’s prosperity, not speaking words hurting the feelings of others, practicing the vow of silence, maintaining the bondage with kinsmen, keeping even altitude towards one’s own men and taking actions conducive to welfare are the acts of Great men.

Continue…

Read: Rama and Yudhishthira on the same Path

Post Author: Mahabharata World

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