Growing up, my father, Jambavan, the bear king, told me stories of Lord Rama and his wife Sita. His proud moment was when he assisted Lord Ram in the battle against Ravana, and every night he would narrate to me the details of the fight and how the victorious Rama returned back to Ayodhya and was welcomed with praises and showered with flowers and gold. But he always missed one important detail, the story of Janaki, Maa Sita.
Of that story, I learnt on my own. How Lord Rama had abandoned his wife and how she raised her two sons, Luv and Khush, alone in the forest.
I am reminded of that story today, as I see a furious father cursing his own son. I am angry too, I know Samba has faulted on more than one occasion, but perhaps the need for attention from his father led him to such wreckful actions?
Samba, as a young child too, had been mischievous. 'Like father, like son', people often mentioned playfully. But in my heart, I knew that his careless acts, if not stopped today, could lead to a calamitous end. And so, I became the strict parent out of the two, and Samba instead of listening to me, starting distancing himself from me.
When he attempted to kidnap Duryodhana’s daughter, which lead to a war between the Kauravas and the Yadavas, his uncle Balarama intervened; peace was restored, and the marriage between Samba and Lakshmana was solemnized. Why did a father not preach to his son the righteous path then?
When Samba pretended to be a pregnant woman and duped few sages who were visiting Dwaraka, why was he not corrected then?
I am in no way trying to defend my son. Today, when he made the unforgivable mistake, of tricking one of his father’s junior wives by disguising himself as as his father, he has been cursed by his father that that he will suffer from a skin disease that will enable his wives to distinguish between father and son.
Perhaps in penitence, my son will learn from his mistakes.
But will the father learn from his? Does he take any responsibility on how his neglect could be a reason for the way his son turned out to be? For had not Krishna spent all of his time with Arjuna and the Pandavas and in the politics of Kurukshetra, but spent a little time with his son teaching him the right values, perhaps Samba would have followed in his father's footsteps and been as noble, as divine, and as wise, as his father.
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These short stories were developed during the A-Z challenge in 2014. Each story is based on 26 colours which commence with every letter of the alphabet from A to Z. The themes developed in these stories range from marital despair to urban city-life blues, from love to loss, from child abuse to infidelity, divorce, and much more.
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