Balakanda - Doha 21 to 30

Sri Ramcharitmanas is a great Hindu scripture and poetic classic written by Goswami Tulsidas.

Doha - 21

Instal the luminous gem in the shape of the divine name ' Rama' on the threshold of the tongue at the doorway of your mouth, if you will have light both inside and outside, O Tulasidasa.

Chaupala -

Yogis (mystics) who are full of dispassion and are wholly detached from God's creation keep awake (in the daylight of wisdom) muttering the Name with their tongue, and enjoy the felicity of Brahma (the Absolute), which is incomparable, unspeakable, unmixed with sorrow and devoid of name and form, Even those (seekerd of Truth) who aspire to know the mysterious ways of providence are able to comprehend them by muttering the Name, their worst calamities of the
gravest type disappear and they become happy. In this world there are four kinds of devotees of Sri Rama; all the of them are virtuous, sinless and noble. All the four, clever as they are, rely upon the Name is supreme in all the four Yugas and all the four Vedas, particularly in the Kali age, in which there is no other means of salvation.

Doha - 22

Even those who are free from all desires and absorbed in the joy of devotion to Sri Rama have thrown their heart as fish into the nectarine lake of supreme affection for the Name.

Chaupala -

There are two aspects of God-the one unqualified and the other qualified, Both these aspects are unspeakable, without beginning and without parallet . To my mind greater than both is the as a bold assertion on the part of this aservant; I record my mind's own conviction , partiality and liking. The two aspects of Brahma (God) should be recognized as akin to fire; the one (viz, the Absolute) represents fire which is latent in wood; while the other (qualified Divinity) corresponds to that which is externable through the Name; therefore I have called the Name greater than Brahma and Sri Rama both brahma (God) is one , all -pervading and imperishable Lord is present in every heart, all beings in this world are nonetheless miserable and unhappy. Throught the practice of the Name preceded by Its true appraisement, however, the same Brahma reveals Itself even as the value of a jewel is revealed by its correct knowledge.

Doha - 23

The glory of the Name is thus infinitely greater tham that absolure; I shall show below how in my judgment the Name is superior even to Sri Rama.

Chaupala -

For the sake of His devotees Sri Rama assumed the form of a human being and suffering calamities Himself, brought relief to the pious. By fondly repeating His Name, on the hand, devotees easily become abodes of joy and blessings. Sri Rama Himself redeemed a single woman (Ahalya), the wife of an ascetic; while His Name corrected the error of crores of wicked souls. For the sake of the sage (Visvamitra) Sri Rama wrought the destruction of Suketu's daughter (Tadaka) with her army and son (Subahu); while His Name puts an end to the devotee's vain hopes along with his errors and sorrow even as the very glory of His Name purified the mind of countless devotees. The Delighter of Raghus (Sri Rama ) crushed only a host of demons, while His Name uproots all the impurities of the Kali age.

Doha - 24

The Lord of Raghus conferred immortality only on faithful servants like Sabari (the celebrated Bhila woman) and the vulture (jatayu) while His Name has delivered innumerable wretches; the tale of Its well-know in the Vedas.

Chaupala -

As is well- known to all, Sri Rama extended His protection to two devotees only, viz ; Sugriva and Vibhisana; His Name, on the other hand, has showered Its grace on numerous humble souls, This superb glory of the Name shines forth in the world as well as in the Vedas. Sri Rama collected an army of bears and monkeys and took no little pains over the construction of a bridge (to connect the mainland with the island of Lanka). Through the repetition of His Name, however, the ocean of mundane existence itself gets dried up: let the wise bear this in mind Sri Rama killed in battle Ravana with all his family and repetition of His own city with Sita He was then crowned king in the capital of Ayodhya, while gods and sages sung His glories in choicest pharases. His servants are, however, able to conquer the formidable army of error fondly remembering His Name and absorbed in devotion move about in joy which is peculiarly their own ; by the grace of the Name they know not sorrow even in dream.

Doha - 25

The Name is thus greater than Brahma and Sri Rama both and confers blessing even on the bestowers of boons this in His heart, the great Lord Siva chose this word (Rama ) for Sri Rama story comprising 100 crore verses.*

Chaupala -

By the grace of the Name alone Lord Sambhu (Siva) is immortal and though endowed with inauspicious paraphenalia (such as a wreath of wreath of skulls), is yet a storehouse of blessings. Again , it is by the grace of the Name alone that siddhas (adepts) , sages and Yogis like Suka, Sanaka and others enjoy divine raptures, Narada realized the glory of the Name; that is why, while Sri Hari is beloved of the world (and Hara is dear to Sri Hari), he (Narada) is dear to Hari and Hari (Visnu and Siva) both. It was because of his repeating the Name that the Lord showered His grace on prahlada, who thereby became the crest-jewel of devotees. Dhruva repeated the name of Sri Hari with a feeling of indignation (at the harsh treatment received from his step-mother) and thereby attained a fixed and incomparable station in the heavens. It is by remembering the holy Name that Hanuman (son of the wind -god) holds Sri Rama under His thumb. The vile Ajamila and even the clebrated elephant and the harlot of the legent were liberated by the power of Sri Hari 's name. I have no wonds to depict the glory of the Name: not even Rama can adequately glorify It.


Doha - 26

The name of Rama is a wish-yielding tree, the very home of beatitude in this age of Kali, by remembering which Tulasidasa (the poet himself ) was transformed from an intoxicating drug like the hemp-plant into the holy basil.

Chaupala -

(Not only in the in this Kali age, but ) in all the four ages*. at all times (past, present and future) and in all the three spheres (viz; heaven, earth and the subterranean region) creatures have been rid of grief by repeating the Name. The verdict of the Vedas and the puranas as well as of saints is just this:that love of Rama (or the name `Rama') is the reward of all virtuous acts. In the first age, contemplation; in the second age, sacrifice, in the Dvapara age the Lord is propitiated through worship. This age of Kali, however, is simply corrupt and the root of all impurities, where the mind of man wallows like a fish in the ocean of sin. In this terrible age the Name alone is the wish-yielding tree, the very thought of which puts an end to all the illusions of the world. The Name of Rama is the bestower of one's desired object in this age of Kali; It is beneficent in the other world and one's father and mother in this world. In Kaliyuga neither Karma (action) nor Bhakti (devotion) nor again Jnana (knowledge) avails; the name of Rama is the only resort. The age of Kali is as it were the demon Kalanemi, the repository of all wiles; whereas the Name is the wise and mighty Hanuman.

Doha - 27

(To use another metaphor) the Name of Rama is, as it were, the Lord manifested as a man-lion and the age of Kali, the demon Hiranyakasipu. Crushing this enemy of gods, the Name will protect the devotees repeating It, even as the Man-lion protected Prahlada.

Chaupala -

The Name repeated either with good or evil intentions, in an angry mood or even while yawning, diffuses joy in all ten directions. Remembering that Name and bowing my head to the Lord of Raghus, I porceed to recount the virtues of Sri Rama. He whose grace is never tired of showing its good-will to others will mend my errors in everyway. Rama a noble Lord, and a poor servant like myself! Yet, true to His own disposition, that storehouse of compassion has fostered me. In the world as well as in the Vedas we observe the following characteristic in a good master, viz..,that he comes to recognize one's devotion to him as soon as he hears one's prayer. Rich or poor, rustic or urban, learned or unlettered, of good repute or bad, a good poet or a bad one, all men and women extol the king according to his or her light. And the pious, sensible, amiable and supremely compassionate ruler, who takes his descent from a ray of God, greets all with sweet word hearing their compliments and appraising their composition, devotion, supplication and conduct. Such is the way of earthly monarchs, to say nothing of the Lord of Kosala (Sri Rama) who is the crest-jewel of wise men. Sri Rama pleased with unalloyed love; but who is duller and more impure of mind in this world than I ?

Doha - 28A-B

The benevolent Rama will nonetheless respect the devotion and pleasure of this wicked servant----Sri Rama, who made barks out of rocks and wise counsellors out of monkeys and bears. Everybody calls me a servant of the Lord and I myself claim to be one; and Sri Rama puts up with the scoffing remark that a master like Sita's Lord has a servant like Tulasidasa.


My presumption and error are indeed very great and, hearing the tale of my sins, even hell has turned up its nose at them. I shudder to think of it due my assumed fears; while Sri Rama took no notice of them even in a dream. The Lord, on the other hand, applauded my devotion and spirit on hearing of, perceiving and scanning them with the mind's eye. If there is anything good in one's heart, it is marred by the telling; for Sri Rama is pleased to note what is there in the devotee's mind. The Lord never cherishers the latter's spirit a hundred times. For instance, the very crime of which He had killed vali (the monkey-king of Kiskindhya) even as huntstman was repeated in the misdemeanour perpetrated by Srugriva. Vibhisana too was guilty of the same offence; but Sri Rama took no cognizance of it even dream. The Hero of Raghus's clan, on the other hand honoured them both at His meeting with Bharata on His return from Lanka) and commended them in open court.

Doha - 29A-C

While the Lord sat at the foot of trees, the monkeys perched themselves high on the boughs; such insolent creatures He exalted to His own position ! There is no lord so generous as Sri Rama, O Tulasidasa ! Your goodness, O Rama, is beneficent to all; if this is a fact, Tulasidasa too will be blessed by the same. Thus revealing my merits and demerits and bowing my head once more to all, I proceed to sing the immaculate glory of the Chief of Raghus, by hearing which the impurities of the Kali age are wiped away.


The charming story which Yajnavalkya related to the good sage Bharadvaja, I shall repeat the same dialogue at length; let all good souls hear it with a feeling of delight. This ravishing tale was conceived by Sambhu (Lord Siva), who graciously communicated it to His Consort Uma (Parvati). Siva imparted it once more to Kalkabhusundi (a sage in the form of crow), Knowing him to be a devotee of Sri Rama and one qualified to hear it. And it was Yajnavalkya who received it from the latter (Kakabhusundi) and narrated it to Bharadvaja. Both these, the listener (Bharadvaja) and the reciter (Yajnavalkya), are equally virtuous; they view all alike and are acquainted with the pastimers of Sri Hari. Like a myrobalan fruit placed on one's palm, they hold the past, present and future within their knowledge. Besides these, other enlightened devotees of Sri Hari too recite, hear and understand this story in diverse ways.

Doha - 30A-B

Then I heard the same story in the holy Sukaraksetra (the modern Sornon in the western United Provinces) from my preceptor; but as I had no sense in those days of my childhood, I could not follow it full well Both the listener and the reciter of the mysterious story of Sri Rama must be repositories of wisdom. How, then could I, a dull and stupid creature steeped in the impurities of the Kali age, expect to follow it ?


Nevertheless, when the preceptor repeated the story time after, I followed it to a certain extent according to my poor lights. I shall versify the same in the popular tongue, so that my mind may derive satisfaction from it, Equipped with what little intellectual and critical power I possess I shall write with a heart inspired by Sri Hari The story I am going to tell is such as will dispel my own doubts, errors and delusion and will serve as a boat for crossing the stream of mundane existence. The story of Rama is a solace to the learned and a source of delight to all men and wipes out the impurities of the Kali age. Sri Rama's story is a pea-hen for the serpent in the form of the Kali age; again, it is a wooden stick for kinding the sacred fire of wisdom. The tale of Rama is the cow of plenty in this age of Kali; it is a beautiful life-giving herb for the virtuous. It is a veritable river of nectar on the surface of this globe; it shatters the fear of birth and death and is a virtual snake for the frog of delusion. It is beneficent to pious souls-even as Goddess Parvati (the daughter of Himavan) is friendly to gods; again, it puts an end to hell even as Parvati exterminated the army of demons. It flows from the assemblaage of saints, even as Lakshmi (the goddess of wealth) sprang from the ocean; and like the immovable earth it bears the burden of the entire creation. Like the sacred river Yamuna in this world it scares away the messengers of Yama (the god of death). It is holy Kasi as it were for the liberation of souls. It is dear to Rama as the sacred basil plant and is truly beneficent to Tulasidasa as his own mother, Hulasi. It is beloved of Lord Siva as the river Narmada (which has its source in Mount Mekala, a peak of the Amarakantaka hills); it is a mine of all attainments as well as of happiness and prosperity. It is to noble qualities what mother Aditi is to gods; it is the culmination as it were devotion to and love for Sri Rama.


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Last Updated : February 16, 2011

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