(We advice readers to read all previous morals before reading this story, which has Bhakti as the main theme.)
Near the famous Punyakshetram Prayaaga (see this too), in “Baanda” nagaram a graamam by name “Raajapuram” is there. There a Sarayuu-paariina-brahmana by name Aatmaaraam dubey used to live. Shrimati Hulasidevi was his dharmapatni. In the year 1554 V.S. (Vikramaarka Shakam), on Shraavana Shuddha-saptami, on Abhuktamuulaa Nakshatram, Shri Tulasidas was born to them
The baby had 12 months of garbha-vaasam. The baby never cried; people used to hear Shri Raama naamam from the baby instead. He had 32 teeth and looked like a 5 year old kid. Seeing these adbhuta-lakshanas, Hulasidevi feared amangalas for the kid and asked a dasi by name Chuniya to look after the baby. Then the baby was 10 days old and vidhivashah, Hulasidevi left her physical body. Chuniya brought up the child with lot of affection. However she too died when Tulasidas was around 5 years old.
Jagajjanani Shri Parvatidevi took pity on the anaatha baalaka, Shri Tulasidas, and used to feed him everyday with Her own hands. Aaha! who can surpass Shri Tulasidas in his adrushtam (adrushtam is that which cannot to seen — it is one’s previous janma-janmaantara karma). He had the adrushtam of taking aahaaram for the hands of Annapuurnadevi Herself. Shri Narahari Aananda, the priya shishya of Shri Anantaanandaji, came searching for Tulasidas. He was sent by Parameshvara. He named the baalaka “Raambola” and took him along with him to the divya Ayodhya nagaram.
On Maagha shuddha-panchami, Shukravaasaram, in 1561 V.S., Shri Narahari Aananda did Upanayana-aadi Samskaaras to Raambola. Raambola was an eka-santaagraahi and a buddhi-shaali. After Vidyaabhyaasam of Raambola, they left for “Varaaha-kshetram” and there Raambola heard Shri Raama Charitam from Shri Naraharisvami. Later they shifted to the anata-phaladaayaka Kaashi Kshetram.
In Kaashi kshetram, under Sheshasanaatanasvaami, Raambola did Veda-Vedaanga adhyayanam for 15 years. Raambola had all the Veda-Vedaantas on his jihvaagram. After taking the anugnya of his Guru, he then left for Raajapuram. He did Yathaavidhi Shraaddhakarmas to his Maata-pitas, when he came to know that they were no more. He used to sing Shri Raama Charitam and spend his time.
On Jyeshtha Shuddha-trayodashi, Guruvaasaram, in 1583 V.S., Raambola and Ratnaavali had Kalyaanam. Raambola used to like Ratnaavali very much. Once when she went to her father’s place, Raambola couldnt bear the viraham and went to her. Seeing the blind prema of Raambola she said “O Praaneshvara! If you show even half of the prema you are showing on me, you would have long time back got Moksham”. Antarmathanam started in Raambola, he immediately left that place and reached Prayaaga. After that he did many Teertha-yatras.
In Maanasasarovaram he had the darshanam of the great Raama bhakta, Kaakabhushundi. Tulasidas used to do Raamkatha-pravachanam in Kaashi Kshetram. Everyday after Sandhyaavandanam, Tulasidas used to pour the Teertham near the root of a Vruksham. A Brahmaraakshasa (the form a Braahmana who does not spread his knowledge gets), who was living on the Vruksham, got Vimukti due to the mahima of the Teertham. The Brahmaraakshasa told Tulasidas “because of your Teertha prabhaavam, I got Vimukti. Please tell me in what way I can help you?”. Tulasidas asked him in what way he can have Shri Raama divya darshanam. Brahmaraakshasa replied “I dont know that. But you take the aashrayam of Shri Aanjaneya and then you will have the darshanam of Shri Raama”. When asked by Tulasidas how to get the aashrayam of Shri Aanjaneya, the Brahmaraakshasa replied “Yetra Yetra Raghunaatha Keertanam Tatra Tatra ….”.
To listen to Shri Tulasidas’s Raama Charita Pravachanam, everyday a Vruddha Brahmana used to come. He used to come before everyone comes and leave after everyone leaves. Listening to Shri Raama gaadha, he used to have Aananda-bhaashpas. Seeing the tanmyayatvam of the Vruddha, once Shri Tulasidas asked “Svaami! Who are You?”. Shri Hanumaan showed his Divya-ruupam. Shri Tulasidas did His praarthana and asked Him how he will have Shri Raama Darshanam. Aanjaneya Svaami replied “go to Chitrakuuta-parvatam. There you will have Shri Raama Chandra Svaami’s Darshanam”. Shri Tulasidas immediately went to Chitrakuutam and lived near Raamaghattam.
Once Shri Tulasidas went for Kaamada-giri-pradakshinam. There he saw two Manohara Divya Raajakumaaras, with Dhanurbaanas, going on two Maha-ashvas. Shri Tulasidas became a mugdha on seeing Them, but didnt recognize Them. Later Shri Hanumaan told him who They were. Shri Hanumaan told to Tulasidas, when he was having pashchaattaapam, “do not worry. You will again have Shri Raama darshanam tomorrow”.
On Mouni-amaavaasya, Saumyavaasaram, in 1607 V.S., Shri Tulasidas again had the Divya Darshanam of Shri Raama and Lakshmana. Shri Raama asked “Baabaa! Please give Us this chandanam”. Shri Hanumaan took the form of a Parrot and told a doha which hinted Shri Tulasidas that it is Shri Raama who was asking him for chandanam. Shri Tulasidas lost the effect of indriyas and stood looking at Shri Raama Divya manohara ruupam. Shri Raama took the chandanam from the hands of Shri Tulasidas and put Tilakam for Himself and to Tulasidas and disappeared.
He then went to Ayodhya Kshetram and then to Prayaaga Teertham during Meghamela. He then had the Divya darshanam of Shri Bharadvaaja and Yaagnyavalka maharshis, near a Vata-Vruksham. He then went to Varaaha Kshetram and lived in a Braahmana’s house near Prahlaadaghaat in Kaashi Kshetram. There he got Kavitaa-shakti, by Shri Shaarada Kataaksham. He used to write Shlokas in Samskrutam and by the next day they used to disappear. Samething happened everyday. On the eighth day, Shri Parameshvara appeared in Tulasidas’s dream and told him “you continue your Kaavya-rachana in your Vyavahaara Bhaasha only”. Shri Tulasidas woke up and Lord Shiva, along with Shri Parvatidevi, appeared before him. Shri Tulasidas did pranaamam and Parameshvara replied
“you go to Ayodhya and do Kaavya-rachana in Avadhi bhaasha. With My aashirvaadam, your Kaavyam will be equal to Saamavedam. Many will sing your Raamaayanam and get the phalitam of singing Saamavedam”.
Shri Tulasidas started Shri Raama Charita Maanasa rachana in the Praatah-kaalam of the Shri Raama Navami in 1631 V.S. at Ayodhya Kshetram. He took 2 years, 7 months and 26 days to complete the rachana of Shri Raama Charita Maanas. Following Parameshvara aagnya he reached Kaashi and sang Shri Raama Charita Maanas before Paarvati-Parameshvara. That night Tulasidas left the Divya Grantham near Vishvanaatha mandiram and when he opened it the next day he saw “Satyam, Shivam, Sundaram” written on it. It was also signed by Parameshvara at the bottom.
Listening to this chamatkaaram, the Panditas got Iirsha on Tulasidas. They did ninda of Tulasidas. They tried to do Grantha-chauryam and appointed two chorakas for it. The chorakas near the Kutiiram of Shri Tulasidas. They saw two Ati-sundara Veeras gaurding the Kutiiram. One of Them had Shyaama-varna, the other Goura-varna shariiram. Choraka’s buddhi changed just on seeing the Veeras. They immediately left chauryam and started Shri Raama bhajana.
The Panditas, who were burning with Iirsha, asked Shri Madhusuudana Sarasvatiji to go through the Grantham. After reading the Raama Charita Maanas Shri Madhusuudanaji became very happy and praised Shri Tulasidas. This increased the Iirsha of the Panditas. They tried one more thing: they placed Veda-Shaastra-Puraana Granthas and Shri Tulasidas’s Raama Charita Maanas, as the bottom most Grantham, before Vishveshvara sannidhi. They closed doors and came next day morning. To their surprise Raama Charita Maanas was on the top of all the Granthams. They realized their mistake and fell at the feet of Shri Tulasidas.
On Aashaadha Krishna-Tadiya, Shanivaasaram, in 1680 V.S., near Aasiighaat, Shri Tulasidas reached Paramapadam.
Morals in the story:
- We learnt the greatness of Shri Raama charita Maanas and Shri Tulasidas. Parama Shiva Himself showed us that Shri Raama Charita Maanas is as valuable as Veda-Shaastra-Puraanas and Saamavedam.
- Raambola always followed all Dharmas. He did Guru-seva and learnt many Shaastras. God always likes such people. Through Ratnaavali He turned Raambola into a great Bhakta and ultimately gave him moksham.
- Iirsha make even great people do really bad things. The Panditas, though they learnt many times that Iirsha is an enemy, they got Iirsha and did very bad things. One must always be away from such durgunas.
Search Terms: Thulasidas, Tulasiidas, Tulaseedas, Thulaseedas, Gosvami, Goswami, Rambola, Kasi, Kashi, Prayaga, Rathnavali, Ratnavali, Tulasidaas