The National Council of Hindu Temples UK (NCHT) presented Prince William with Rishi Valmiki's "Maha Ramanayana", at the Ambassadors Royal Reception on December 3rd.
All Hindus have encountered the Ramayana and are familiar with the story of Prince Rama and most Hindus have a favorite part of the Ramayana, which moves them deeply. For some its the childhood filled Baal Kaand and for many the deeply emotional Sundara Kand but there is one episode in the Ramayana which is the most overlooked and which for some, is the most illuminating part of the whole epic. That section is deemed to be so important that it is even named the Maha Ramayanam (also known as the Yoga Vashishta).
The setting is the throne room at Ayodhya and Rishi Vishwamitra's request that Prince Rama protect his Yagya has just been refused by King Dasharatha. When Prince Rama arrives, the dejected, disconcerted condition of the Prince is such that the Rishis' request is completely forgotten and all turn to Prince Rama to hear what it is that has troubled him so greatly. Prince Rama asks all of the questions a young Crown Prince would ask concerning purpose, good and evil, learning and worship and the answers he receives are such that at the end of the discourse Prince Rama Chandra is no longer a mere mortal, he is now self realized as Sri Rama, ready to do all that was necessary for Ram Raj to commence.
The NCHTUK were invited to represent the Hindu Dharma at the Ambassadors Reception and the General Secretary, Shri Satish K Sharma and his wife attended on behalf of the NCHT UK, representing British Hindu's. The Shastra was presented, wrapped in a saffron cloth with the text "Sri Rama" emblazoned upon it.
As the dialogue by which Crown Prince Rama becomes Sri Rama - it seemed like a fitting choice for a future King, and Prince William was most appreciative of the gift. After conversing regarding its context, His Highness expressed his gratitude and said that he would read it to his son, Prince George.
Satishji commented "It was an honor to be representing British Hindus on this occasion and we had an opportunity to establish new links for the British Hindu community as well as renew past friendships. It was an honor for which I am deeply grateful to my Hindu elders, brothers and sisters at the NCHT UK for their continued support and blessings.prince ] [ ramayana ] [ uk ]