Vanara Gita 56: Devotion towards Hanuman helps build good character

It is the greatest fortune of earthlings that Hanuman resides on this planet. This being so, not contemplating upon him and refusing to hold on to his feet reflect utter foolishness. Letting go of this golden opportunity in life is nothing but stupidity.

All of us are familiar with stories from our Puranas which state that all Gods, be it Rama or Krishna or Subrahmanya, all retired back to their planets upon completion of their tasks.  That they left behind on earth, their energized shadow images (chaya roopa shakti), is also a well-known fact. Apart from Hanuman, the Sun with its self-originating natural energy is the only other visible God on earth. Amongst them, the Sun is neither completely visible nor within reach. Hence Hanuman is the only God who is both visible and within our reach. How can we not remember him then, when we are living on this earth?

Hanuman has preached varied good paths, all of which have been penned down as poetic compositions by eminent poets. Through reading and understanding of these poems and following the path prescribed therein, everyone will transform into worthy beings of great character.

Every being necessarily enters this world in the form of a small infant. All infants are alike and labels such as good, respectable, evil and sinful cannot be attached to any being at the time of birth. It is the character that defines them as adults. No one is born as inferior or mean. It is the samskaras (subtle tendencies of past actions) as well as the present actions of the individual that labels them as good or bad. Meditating upon Hanuman prompts the person towards performing good deeds. In turn this helps in building an excellent character. Good character brings with it the resultant respect and fame.

To lead a respectful life on this earth, devotion is a very critical pre-requisite. Even though people in the society greatly retain the tendency to ridicule others, deep down they entertain a certain degree of respect towards true devotees of the Lord. ‘Oh, he is a great devotee’ or ‘ He is a firm devotee of Lord Hanuman’ or ‘He visits the Venkataramana temple every single day’ – people make such respectful observations about devotees in general. What could be greater luck and respect than to be addressed in this manner by the entire neighborhood?

For example, there are many who customarily offer a vadamala (garland of doughnut shaped lentil-based dish) to Hanuman upon the completion of every good assignment in their life. The society holds such devotees in great respect and awe. This boosts the devotee even further and encourages him to accelerate the participation in such good deeds. It also, in addition, strengthens their good character. Thus the terms ‘devotion’ and ‘devotee’ are steps to building a great character in the individual.

Earth is the only plane in which the person has a chance to build a good character. This is possible because of Hanuman’s grace. Under such circumstances, abstaining from talking about Hanuman and worshipping him is nothing but complete foolishness. Engaging in sinful deeds while displaying pretentious devotion serves no purpose. Ramayana and other great epics are the holy books, reading which will help in developing a great character.

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