srutam hi varnitam bhuri
tvaya sita-pater muhuh
tasya—of Him, the Supreme Personality of Godhead Lord Ramacandra and His brothers; anucaritam—transcendental activities; rajan—O King (Maharaja Pariksit); rsibhih—by great sages or saintly persons; tattva-darsibhih—by persons who know the Absolute Truth; srutam—have all been heard; hi—indeed; varnitam—as they have been so nicely described; bhuri—many; tvaya—by you; sita-pateh—of Lord Ramacandra, the husband of mother Sita; muhuh—more than often.
O King Pariksit, the transcendental activities of Lord Ramacandra have been described by great saintly persons who have seen the truth. Because you have heard again and again about Lord Ramacandra, the husband of mother Sita, I shall describe these activities only in brief. Please listen.
Modern Raksasas, posing as educationally advanced merely because they have doctorates, have tried to prove that Lord Ramacandra is not the Supreme Personality of Godhead but an ordinary person. But those who are learned and spiritually advanced will never accept such notions; they will accept the descriptions of Lord Ramacandra and His activities only as presented by tattva-darsis, those who know the Absolute Truth. In Bhagavad-gita (4.34) the Supreme Personality of Godhead advises:
“Just try to learn the truth by approaching a spiritual master. Inquire from him submissively and render service unto him. The self-realized soul can impart knowledge unto you because he has seen the truth.” Unless one is tattva-darsi, in complete knowledge of the Absolute Truth, one cannot describe the activities of the Personality of Godhead. Therefore although there are many so-called Ramayanas, or histories of Lord Ramacandra’s activities, some of them are not actually authoritative. Sometimes Lord Ramacandra’s activities are described in terms of one’s own imaginations, speculations or material sentiments. But the characteristics of Lord Ramacandra should not be handled as something imaginary. While describing the history of Lord Ramacandra, Sukadeva Gosvami told Maharaja Pariksit, “You have already heard about the activities of Lord Ramacandra.” Apparently, therefore, five thousand years ago there were many Ramayanas, or histories of Lord Ramacandra’s activities, and there are many still. But we must select only those books written by tattva-darsis (jnaninas tattva-darsinah), not the books of so-called scholars who claim knowledge only on the basis of a doctorate. This is a warning by Sukadeva Gosvami. Rsibhis tattva-darsibhih. Although the Ramayana composed by Valmiki is a huge literature, the same activities are summarized here by Sukadeva Gosvami in a few verses.
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