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Wednesday, October 24, 2012

and this is what they thought on Vijay Dashmi....

Ofcourse it all began with Ramji , the seventh incarnation of  Vishnu - Vishnu   the all-pervading essence of all beings, the master of—and beyond—the past, present and future, one who supports, sustains and governs the Universe . Ramji picked up his bow and arrow to slay Ravana .This was his duty- to free his people from all evil forces , and this is what he had been doing in these fourteen years of exile . The final three had to be slayed and as he aimed the first of the three arrows he thought , and prayed, " let there always be someone to guide my people and protect them from the evil ones".  Through a smoke induced haze  a  blurred vision of a slight man, bespectacled , holding a
wooden stick swam before his eyes and vanished . Ramji relaxed and lazily shot the arrow. His prayers had been answered. For had not the man  been wearing  wooden slippers- kharaus - just like what he was wearing right now ?

Lakshmana , Rama's brother waited on the sidelines for his brother to do the final honours. What were his thoughts at this time ? None  actually. His was not to ask , or question, or speak. He had taken it on himself to only follow . He was the original follower of the original leader.

And Ravanna ? you would think that a man on the threshold of death would be praying for forgiveness - full of angst at the evil  that he had embodied coming to an end with his death ? Nah - Ravanna was full of beams , giving a high five to Meghnaad, and sharing a , ahem , dirty joke with Kumbhkaran. He knew what no one else knew till now - and that is that he would not die. Hold on - the story is not being distorted-   his body would die but his evil would not. He knew that where ever the ashes of his ten heads fell - evil would take root there . And when that evil was killed ,  a new stronger strain of the old would come up ...and the cycle would go on.

Today is Vijay Dashmi . The triumph of good over evil . The country's  top brass is at the Ramlila grounds . What are they thinking ? Why  are they looking so  uncomfortable ? They are looking at everyone but not at each other and certainly not at ' Ramji'. The symbol of peace - doves- are released . The 'Silent  One ' shoots the symbolic arrow. Before doing so he looks at  We know who . An imperceptible nod of the head. Permission is granted.  The evil ones are on fire - in a minute they have been burnt to ashes. Everyone claps. It is agreed that good has triumphed . Crackers light up the western sky. The tamasha over , everyone heads back home .

A slight breeze stirs. The smouldering ashes are lifted and carried . Where do they fall ? How does it matter ? It has stopped mattering . The man with the wooden stick has come and gone. For some years after him people talked of faith and service and nationalism.  But slowly , and slowly, all that became a memory. The ashes of Ravanna's ten heads had spread from Kashmir to Kanyakumari. The people , the mango people, know that whether it is  ' the hand' that rocks the cradle or the  saffron forming a brigade at the lord's janambhoomi , they are on their own- rudderless and clueless.

Happy Dussehra !

1 comment:

  1. Dear Anju,

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