Lord Rama could have hated his stepmother Kaikeyi forever. And no one would have blamed him. Kaikeyi was so callous that the tears of her husband, Dasrath, did not melt her heart. She saw him dying but she did not care. She just wanted to satiate her false ego. Her feelings, her emotions, her desires, her satisfaction was more important to her than anything else in the world. She forced Lord Rama and mother Sita to live in the forest. Dasrath ultimately died in separation of Lord Rama. She was the only cause of all the sufferings in Ayodhya.
But despite her wicked behavior, Lord Rama still loved her. After realizing her abominable conduct, she was fearful and ashamed to go in front of Lord Rama. With eyes filled with tears she approached him. Lord Rama immediately embraced her. He did not blame her even once for what she did. He forgave her before she even asked for forgiveness.
This is the quality of the Supreme Lord, our eternal father. He is magnanimous. He does not hate anyone. He is the well-wishing friend of all.
We the living entities may dislike him. We may disobey him. We may even despise him. But still, he never leaves us. Wherever we are, he is with us. As Supersoul he always resides in our heart.
Katha Upanishad and Shvetasvatara Upanishad explain that the living entities (soul) and the Paramatma (Supersoul) are like two friendly birds sitting on the same tree. One bird is the soul and the other Supersoul. The soul wants to enjoy independently from the Supersoul. The Supreme Lord (Supersoul) who is the creator of the soul allows the soul to enjoy the material world. The soul turns away from the Lord and suffer immensely while trying to enjoy the material world. In spite of being neglected, the Supreme Lord never leaves the living entities (soul). The Lord desperately wants us to return back to him. He anxiously waits for the moment when we will turn towards him and express our feelings of love to him. As soon as we do so, he becomes so happy. He forgives all our misdeeds and free us from all physical and mental sufferings. Our life becomes an ocean of bliss.
Kaikeyi suffered because she exiled Lord Rama from her life. She thought she can enjoy the kingdom of God without God. We are struggling and suffering in this world because we, too, have exiled the Supreme Lord from our life. We are trying to enjoy in this world but are failing again and again. Almost all the time we live in fear and anxiety. Our heart always remains dissatisfied.
Kaikeyi understood her folly and welcomed Lord Rama back in her life for her own benefit. Similarly, we should understand our mistake and give up our desire to enjoy this world. Without wasting a moment, we should turn towards the Supreme Lord who is the best friend and best well-wisher of all of us (suhrdam sarva-bhutanam, Bhagavad Gita 5.29).
Once we take shelter of Lord Rama and enthrone him in our heart all our miseries will end. We won’t live in anxiety and there will not be fear of future. Our heart will be filled with unlimited transcendental pleasure.
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(Purushottam Nitai Das is a member of congregation at Iskcon Kolkata. He works at IBM as an Advisory Consultant. He writes at https://discoverursupersoul.com/)
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