Ram Rajya in Kalyug ?
My late father,while narrating a story from mythology,had once talked about the concept of Ram Rajya.As a child,what I had then grasped and understood was that during this Rajya,no one put any locks on the doors of their houses.My childish mind could not reconcile with this principle.Would thieves and robbers not be tempted to loot and plunder,I had thought then.
Till today,before I retire for the night,I check and double check the locks and safety chains in our house.It is better to be safe than sorry,we were taught.
Why suddenly,this topic in today’s times,you will be tempted to ask me. Here is a news item that caught my eye and troubled my mind for a while.
Quote:Temple town with doorless homes gets a bank with no lock.
Ahmednagar (Maharashtra), Jan 10 2011
Shani Shingnapur, the world famous temple town in Maharashtra where houses have neither doors or locks, now befittingly has its first commercial bank branch – with no locks on its front door!
The public sector UCO Bank is the first to throw open the doors of commercial banking to this unique town of 3,000 people. Bowing to local religious sentiments, the bank last week decided to open the branch without a lock on its front door.The people of Shani Shingapur fix only door frames, but no doors to their homes and no locks for their safety lockers because they believe the temple is a “living abode” of Lord Shani, the ruling deity. And so strong is the belief that no one dares to attempt theft for fear of inviting Lord Shani’s wrath upon himself and his family.However, as a precautionary measure, some of the six-member staff of UCO Bank posted there take turns to stay within the branch premises all the time. “There is no lock on the bank’s main entrance. But with cash boxes and other important documents kept inside, security precautions needed to be taken,” said an official.The inauguration was done amid fanfare on January 6 by local legislator Shankarrao Gadak of the Nationalist Congress Party, who is also an important driving force behind the Shani Shingnapur temple.The bank’s branch manager, U.K. Shah said that the first bank in the town has already caught the imagination of the people and that he was optimistic of good growth.“So far, we have built a customer base of over 200 people and more are coming in. We plan to have our ATM here soon,” a proud Shah told IANS Monday.However, the local and district police are not impressed by the ‘lock-less’ bank branch and have already sounded a word of the caution to the concerned authorities.For one, keeping large quantities of cash without security could attract undue attention of undesirable elements, a district police official pointed out.The other banks in the nearest town Sonai have refused to cooperate with the UCO Bank branch to store its cash overnight on public holidays and weekends. The bank authorities discussed security aspects with the police and the local police have offered to provide them armed gunmen – but at a cost of nearly Rs.100,000 per month. This was not acceptable to the bank authorities, an official said. Despite repeated attempts by IANS, the UCO Bank authorities in Kolkata and Mumbai regional and zonal offices chose to keep mum on the security considerations for the Shani Shingnapur branch.A district official said that contrary to the image of the temple town, tourists and pilgrims are blatantly fleeced in the name of religion by nearly 300 touts operating outside the temple precincts.According to a police official, a couple of decades ago wearing of lungi (coloured dhoti) was suddenly introduced for devotees visiting the temple — without which, the touts claimed, the Sun God would not accept their prayers.“A single lungi is rented to several pilgrims at exorbitant rates of Rs.200 and more. Since nobody carries a lungi with them, they are forced to rent it. The district authorities have done nothing to stop this menace,” the police official said.On an average, around 5,000 tourists and pilgrims visit the town daily and on weekends the number swells to over 50,000.Incidentally, on Oct 25 last year, the first ever case of robbery was recorded by the Sonai police. A Haryana tourist lost valuables worth around Rs. 35,000, a Sonai police official said.Unquote.
Having read this piece of interesting (?) news,I recalled a discourse on Ramayana at the residence of a Hindu friend of my late father, long ago,which I had attended along with him. The learned Panditji, had recited a few verses and had explained their meaning. Here are those verses and their meanings.(Any errors, ommissions, mis-interpretations, may please be forgiven)
The concept of Ram Rajya has been beautifully brought out in the following chopais:
Ram Rajya Baithe Trailoka |
Harshit Bhaye Gaye Sab Shoka ||
Meaning : When Ram became the King of Three worlds, everyone was happy and all sorrows diminished.
Daihik Daivik bhautik Tapa |
Ram Rajya Nahin Kahuhin Vyapa ||
Meaning : During rule of Ram there was no psychological, physical and material pain to anyone.
Bayar Na Kar Kahu San Koi |
Ram Pratap Vishamata Khoi ||
Meaning : None engaged in enmity with anyone. Due to grace of Ram,differences had been merged.
Nahin Daridra, Koi Dukhi Na Deena |
Nahin Koi Abudha Na Lakshan Heena ||
Meaning : There was lack of poverty, sorrow, humiliation, and ignorance. Everyone possessed a good quality of life.
Alpa Mratyu Nahi Kavaneu Peera |
Sab Sunder Sab Viruj Sareera. ||
Meaning : None died a premature death. Everybody had a pleasant and healthy body.
All the above chopais show the characteristics of a Ram Rajya.I understand that during the reign of Ram,there was perfect justice and freedom, peace and prosperity. There were no natural disasters, diseases, ailments or ill-fortune of any nature for any living being. There were no sins committed in the world by any of his people. Rama was and still is worshiped and hailed by all – the very symbol of moksha, the ultimate goal of life, and the best example of perfect character, inspiring human beings till today. In short, during Ram Rajya, peace, prosperity and tranquility had always reigned.If I am right, in Hindi, “Ayodhya” means “a place where there is no war.” Hence “Ram Rajya” has been described as an ideal society.
Having understood the above concept, the afore-mentioned news item about UCO Bank opening a lockless branch, appears to me, either to be a feeble attempt at bringing back the concept of Ram Rajya during the present times of Kalyug (?), or just a marketting gimmick, to grab some column centimeters of space in the media,or just a silly brain- wave of some executives at the top end of the Bank’s pyramid, to exploit “the fortune at the bottom of the pyramid” (late C K Prehlad’s pioneering treatise by this name).It could have many other meanings or implications as well. Think it over !
Jai Ram ji ki!!
Your opinion is very nice, Broca ji.
Mar 01, 2011
Dear Broca Sir, just read your opinion and thoroughly enjoyed it.It is an interesting cocktail of mythology mixed with today’s reality. I m luvin it !!
Jyoti Sabharwal, Faridabad
Mar 02, 2011
Wonderful satirical write. Thanks for sharing, Broca. Kudos.
Seshu Chamarty, Hyderabad
Respected Broca Sir, another delightful read from your creative mind’s basket of thoughts. Highly enjoyable ! How you combine the ordinary with the extra-ordinary to give us such tasty fare!! Thanks!
Manmeet Chaddha, Chandigarh
Mar 02, 2011
BROCA ji , an interesting and thought provoking article ! Unfortunately the modern day Rams – the stalwarts of our nation , are keeping their black cash in Swiss banks , whoever spoke of income tax ?! So when the Banks get robbed the common man suffers ! Modern day Ramrajya is for those corrupt & vile people , not for us ! Thanks for sharing , -Raj
Raj Nandy, New Delhi
Mar 03, 2011
Dear Chandrika, Jyoti, Seshu, Manmeet and Raj ji, a BIG THANK YOU to you all for your lovely responses.
J S BROCA, New Delhi
Mar 03, 2011
Well I definitely enjoyed studying it. This subject provided by you is very effective for proper planning.