Monday, November 30, 2015

Vairagrahana Budhdhi - An Eclipse of Enmity

This article is one of a series of articles that record my notes and observations from the Valmiki Ramayana as part of the “Read Ramayana” Project.  This article is a short note on a trivial yet amusing use of language. 

These days it is not so uncommon to see people around us, and often ourselves, letting out that impulsive burst of anger and/or irritation when faced with an unpleasant situation.  One common example for this would be a drive on today's roads, irrespective of whether we are driving or are getting driven by someone else. Other examples include little things like getting pushed around while in a queue to serious life changing events caused due to factors out of our control.  Whatever be the case, in today's life and lifestyle, not a single day goes where we dont have those feelings of annoyance and dislike.  And when we happen to recount these situations and the people who may have caused them, we end up referring to them as “fool”, “irritating fellow”, “pain in the neck”, etc.  

As I was filing through the pages of the Balakaanda, I realised that similar situations have occurred in the lives of our ancestors, inspite of differing/dissimilar lifestyles.  So how do you think Valmiki would react when he faced something that was really unpleasant for him? Lets find out -- 

While standing on the banks of the Tamasa River, before the Ramayana was to be written, Rishi Valmiki saw two Krouncha birds happily playing with each other; when suddenly one of them  was killed by a hunter.  Inspite of being a sage i.e. a Rishi (one who has attained a certain control over one's mind and senses), this killing of the Krouncha bird affected him so much, that he, almost instantaneously, came up with a unique word to qualify the hunter. He describes the hunter as  
i.e. one whose mind has caught an eclipse, so to say, that too an eclipse of such enmity that the hunter so deftly killed the Krouncha bird. 

Paapaatmnaa krutam kashtam vairagrahanabudhdhinaa | 
Yastaadrusham charuravam kroucham hanyadakaaranaath ||” 
Kanda 1 Sarga 2 Shloka 28 

What an expression that is  - An eclipse of Enmity on the intellect – and this verse was uttered by him in the spur of the moment, it was not a well revised piece of poetry that he 'chose' to write.  A humble salute to Rishi Valmiki for this – if he could come up with such a refined expression even for a spurt of anger anddisgust, imagine the output when he would sit and ruminate and write his thoughts out! And indeed, what an epic the Ramayana has turned out to be.  In fact, it was this shloka (that bubbled in Rishi Valmiki's mind)  that led him to actually pen the epic that is Ramayana. 

Interesting, isn't it?

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Saturday, November 28, 2015

Back from a forced hiatus

This blog and the blog author were on a forced hiatus due to connectivity issues.

And now we are back.
Sharing a nice video useful for photography enthusiasts. It lists out 18 lenses that are useful for Canon Camera users - both full frame and crop frame.