Bahubali – The parable of the epiphany

Bahubali - The parable of the epiphany

 

INSouth India, Gomteswar has the greatest statue in the world – the statue of the sannyasin Bahubali (“a man with strong hands”). 

Bahubali was the son of a king who became a monk. The king had two sons: the eldest, Bharat, and the youngest, Bahubali. 

The king renounced power and worldly life; his kingdom was to be inherited by Bharat. But he, having talked with his father, left and plunged into the world of meditation. 

Bahubali was a great warrior and a mighty man, he had to inherit the kingdom and aspired to it. But the problem was that the father, having renounced the kingdom, did not make any orders in this regard. 

He reasoned like this: “How can I do this? After all, power is what I renounced! How can I proclaim one of my sons to be the heir of that which I have renounced? Power is theirs. I do not take her with me. People will laugh at me. After all, the kingdom is worthless and no one needs to inherit it. If they want to reign, then this is their business, but perhaps one of them will follow in my footsteps. ” 

Bharat shared his father’s views and went to the mountains. Bahubali was a practical person and wanted to become a king, but this required either the order of his father or the abdication of his older brother, who was legally the heir. 

The situation was strange. Many problems accumulated in the state, and Bahubali was unable to make decisions and issue decrees. At first he had to declare himself king, but this required the formal abdication of his older brother. 

The angry Bahubali went to the mountains, where Bharat was meditating. When he came and saw his brother sitting on a rock, blood leaped in him. He grabbed him with his strong hands, lifted him, and was about to throw him into the abyss, but then he had the thought: “What am I doing? And for what? For the kingdom my father denied? After living his entire life, he found him worthless. My brother loves me so much that if I ask, he will gladly cede his inheritance to me. And now, when I raised him, intending to throw him into the abyss, he does not even resist, as if we were playing. ” As a child, he often lifted his brother with his strong arms. Tears welled up in his eyes: “What was I going to do? What will people think of me? ” And, lowering his brother to the ground, he plunged into deep meditation that changed his whole life. 

He still stands there, carved in white marble. It is a very beautiful statue, 52 feet high, with a human-sized pinky toe. Around it there are steps carved out of marble, along which you can climb and inspect the statue from all sides. A parable is carved on the rock that tells how Bahubali became enlightened. It says that he stood in meditation for several months; climbing plants wrapped around his legs and flowers bloomed; birds began to build nests in his ears. 

And what happened to Bharat, who was almost enlightened? He was on the verge of enlightenment, and he is still there. What prevented him? 

When Bharat opened his eyes and saw his brother standing in deep silence, and light emanated from his appearance, he was very surprised, because his brother was never distinguished by holiness, and, suddenly, he became enlightened, and he, who renounced the kingdom and applied so much efforts to attain enlightenment are still on the way. 

The father found both sons meditating and was also surprised to find that the youngest son had become enlightened. When Bharat opened his eyes and saw his father sitting in front of him, he said: 

– You see, Bahubali became enlightened, how could this happen? Why didn’t I achieve this after spending so much time? What prevented me? 

Father said: 

– Something very subtle bothers you, just the thought that you have done an unprecedented act in history, something unique. There were kings who renounced the kingdom, there were kings who did not renounce the kingdom. You are the only one who has not even accepted the kingdom; the question of renunciation did not arise. You are unique in your way, and this little idea is a very subtle egoism that hinders you. 

Your brother, although he is rude and inexperienced in the scriptures, did not have such thoughts. He came to kill you, but at the last moment he realized and overcame the base in himself, and since he did everything passionately, with all the ardor of his heart, he rushed and became enlightened, and you, moving step by step, are still on the way …

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