Thursday, March 30, 2017

Urmilayana -the story of Urmila

Urmilayana  -the story  of Urmila

By
P.R.Ramachander

(Lon long time, when I was about 10 years old   I had read    the story of  Urmila in Kalaimagal  possibly written by great writer Kanchana .  After reading the story only I came to know   about the very strong women characters in  Ramayana.  Recently a post  in tamil referred to that  story. I  then wrote it and later I found   That Sujatha has  written a eleven part story about her in a blog called  kathaa-amrit.blogspot.com. It is extensive and very moving   and had I seen that  I would not have written this. Anyway  having written , I wanted to post it.)





Ramayana   is a great epic famous  for ,
Its great   Women characters and I am sure ,
 All of you know   about  Kausalya , Sumithra,
Kaikeyi  ,Mandhara,  Thadaga, Sabari   and Mandodhari.

But  when some one talks   about   Urmila of Ramayana ,
Many of you   would  definitely ask  “Urmila   who?”
Urmila was   another daughter  of Janaka who married,
Lakshmana the   very dear   younger brother of  Rama.

I do not know   whether   any of you have  noticed ,
That  in the great epic of  Valmiki  Ramayana ,
As soon as a character’s role is over, nothing ,
Is mentioned    about   him or her  till he has a  role to play.

Bharatha   or Kausalya  or Kaikeyi  or Simithrs,
Or Shatrugna or for   that matter  their kula guru  vasishta,
Is not mentioned    in the epic till  Lord Rama   returns,
After  they bid him farewell  in the forest  after Dasaratha’s death.

Nothing is mentioned    about   Janaka  or  Urmila ,
Or Mandavi or   Sruthakirthi    after   the marriage of Sita and Rama,
And based  on other   versions   of Ramayana , I am trying ,
To  describe   the life of Urmila   , the wife of Lakshmana

  When Rama   decided   to go to forest as per  wishes of his father,
Sita convinced Rama  that if Rama wanted  Kausalya  not to come with him,
Because she had to look after  his father , there was   a need ,
For her to go with   Rama so that she can look after  her.

Rama’s  very dear    brother  Lakshmana   also  convinced him,
That he needed to accompany him    so that  Rama and Sita are  well protected,
And then Rama   made  Lakshmana    go to his  palace,
And  take  permission of his wife  Urmila   to go to forest.

But when Rama went to his palace he found   Urmila  ,
Dressed to kill   and living   in very great joy  and she told,
Her husband, “ My father did not   give me as   your bride ,
So that    I would live in poverty in the forest   and so  bye to you.”

Lakshmana   was greatly shocked   and told her  in great anger,
“I hate you and would not   even like to see   your face   from now on.”
But Urmila    who loved him lot    only smiled    and bid him farewell .
The Very angry   short tempered  Lakshmana immediately left her.”

 As soon as he left,  Urmila    who  had great love   and respect for Rama and Sita ,
Changed   her dress   to that  of a  Sanyasini     and started living there  in Ayodhya,
Looking after  well    all the three  mothers    and she told them , “I was harsh to my husband,
Because  I wanted   him to go and look after Rama and Sita    without any distractions.”

Fourteen years  in Ayodhya    was almost eventless   and went away in a jiffy,
And Rama   came back along    with Sita    and Lakshmana   and as per,
The wishes   of the people    Rama was   crowned   as king of Ayodhya.
But Lakshmana  never went back to his palace   and nordid he talk a word  to his wife.

Sita   , who was shrewd and merciful   understood   something was wrong ,
In the life of Urmila    and extracted  out of her   all   that happened   to her.
She then promised her that  she would tell   everything   to Lakshmana and convince him,
But God had    other plans   and Rama   decided   to sent Sita   away to the forest.

While Lakshmana   was taking to her the forest  , Sita told him everything   about Urmila,
Whose self effacing   sacrifice had   no parallel  in any of the stories they have heard.
Lakshmana  with tears in his eyes   due to the order  of his brother   as well as ,
The silly way that  he  tortured Urmila    who was a women nonpareil  Left Sita in the forest.

Lakshmand  as soon as he entered   rushed to his palace   rather   than his brother’s palace ,
And fell flat  sobbing uncontrollably    at the    feet of Urmila   and begged   her pardon,
But   she the one who is humility    and sacrifice personified    just told him  .
That   it was   she who was   solely   responsible   for what happened to her,.

If  Rama   who gave up  the  kingdom that was  due to him has  done great sacrifice,
If Sita   who gave up  the life  of Luxury in Ayodhya to be with Rama has done  great sacrifice,
If Bharatha   who  patiently waited  for his broither’s return worshipping his sandal  has done great sacrifice ,
IF Lakshmana    who did not eat  or sleep   for fourteen years   to guard his brother  has done great sacrifice ,
What of Urmila , who  just for helping  her husband do her duty  , sacrificed   everything that she knew off,
And lived   a  life of a saint   and earned   the   great hate  of her husband?  Is it not a greater sacrifice?






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