Lord Rama is known as the Maryada Purushottam – the perfect man. Truth personified, He is the most ideal man in all respects – values, conduct, relationships and probably everything under the sun you can think of. Rama inspired many of his followers in many stages of their life with his values and thoughts. According to Valmiki Ramayana Lord Sri Rama is the only person in the earth with all the good qualities of an ideal leader.
What differentiates Lord Rama from the average human being? What entitles Him to be called the Maryada Purushottam?
Lord Sri Rama as the only person living on the earth to have the embodiment of sixteen different auspicious qualities (Kalyaana Gunas). The 16 kalyan gunas is the answer. These are the 16 noble qualities that transforms an average human being to a Puroshottam!
1.Kalyan Guna 1 – Gunavaan / Sousheelyam: Unconditional
गुणवान् (guṇavān = principled person)
Lord Rama treated everyone equally. He accepted Guha, the leader of the hunters and Sugriva, the king of the vaanaras (monkeys) as His brothers. Lord Hanuman was accepted as his ardent devotee. Vibishana was Ravana’s brother and Ram accepted him too – despite the disapproval of his followers.
2. Kalyan Guna 2 – Veeryavaan: Assertive
वीर्यवान् (vīryavān = potential one)
Veeryavaan literally means being strong or aggressive. However, taking this meaning literally is the mistake often made. Lord Rama was a fierce warrior and had unusual power and strength. However, He never misused these. As a matter of fact, this fierceness was combined with the first guna – sousheelyam, which made him assertive.
3.Kalyan Guna 3 – Dharmagnya: Righteous
धर्मज्ञः (dharmajñaḥ = conscientious)
Lord Rama always followed Dharma (the path of righteousness). Simply put, He always stuck to his values. Whether it meant leaving his kingdom to be in exile or destroying the evil in the form of Vaali (Sugriv’s brother) and later Ravana – His values were never compromised.
4. Kalyan Guna 4 – Kritagnya: Grateful
कृतज्ञः (kṛtajñaḥ = redeemer)
After defeating Ravana, Lord Rama wholeheartedly thanked the Vanaras (Monkeys) for their help. Moreover, it is also said that towards the end of his incarnation, Lord Rama expressed being indebted to Lord Hanuman for the selfless service.
5. Kalyan Guna 5 – Sathyavaakyaha – True
सत्य वाक्यो (satya vākyo = truth-teller)
Lord Rama always spoke the truth and nothing but the truth. Even as a child in Bala khanda, Rama is seen as an honest person. Honesty makes a leader authentic and builds trust.
6. Kalyan Guna 6 – Drudavrathaha: Steadfast
धृढ व्रतः (dhṛḍha vrataḥ = self-determined in his deed)
A person who is self-determined, steadfast in his/her attitude towards truth and righteousness and resolute. Lord Rama gladly accepted to live in exile. When Bharat came to request him to come back to Ayodhya and take charge of the kingdom, He bluntly refused.
7. Kalyan Guna 7 – Chaarithrenacha koyuktaha: Charismatic
चारित्रेण च को युक्तः (cāritreṇa ca ko yuktaḥ = blent with good-conduct)
Lord Rama had an impeccable character and without any blemish. A lot of research comparing the leadership of Rama to transformational leadership is available. The inner sense of purpose, the confidence, communication and the ability to connect with people are the essentials that build your character at the workplace. The leader enhances the personal potential growth of every individual member of the team and provides them required guidance to achieve their goals as well as organizations goals. Here Lord Sri Rama is a perfect example of an ideal leader.
8. Kalyan Guna 8 – Sarvabhuteshu hitaha: Emancipative
सर्व भूतेषु को हितः (sarva bhūteṣu ko hitaḥ = benign, in respect of all beings)
Blessed were the souls who ever met Lord Rama. Though a king He performed the last rites of Jatayu. He transformed a stone into a damsel thus setting Ahilya free from the curse. The stories of His compassion are plenteous. He established dharma in his rule. Peace and prosperity were hallmarks of his rule. His rule came to be known as Rama-Rajya to the world.
9. Kalyan Guna 9 – Vidwaan: Skillful
विद्वान् (vidvān = adept)
Lord Rama had mastery over all subjects. He had the knowledge of the Astra – the weapons, (being a Kshatriya) and the Shaastra – the Vedas. He thus has been rightly described as the Vidwaan. Lord Rama never does anything without having ample knowledge of a subject or thing to be done. He used to study mantras in such a way that words could create a world of peace and happiness. In present times, learning agility is one the most sought after leadership traits.
10. Kalyan Guna 10 – Samartaha: Capable
समर्थः (samarthaḥ = ablest)
Lord Rama was considered as capable of doing absolutely anything in this world. As a child, He defeated the Demoness named Taadaka and her sons, single-handedly. At Mithila (present day Nepal), He is said to have lifted the Shiva Dhanush – the bow of Lord Shiva, which no one could and thus was married to Goddess Sita.
A person who is capable of doing and accomplishing anything in this world. If anyone could have built a floating bridge of stones that too with a vanara army, it was Rama. The leader should have a strong will-power to accomplish the solutions. In the age of innovation, being capable of new and creative ideas is a leadership trait everyone can learn from Rama.
11. Kalyan Guna 11 – Priyadarshanaha: Presentable
एक प्रिय दर्शनः (eka priya darśanaḥ = uniquely good-looking)
Lord Rama is described as Aajaanu Baahum and Aravinda Lochana, meaning tall, well built and handsome. When you look at Him, you are mesmerized. Such is his handsomeness. Personal branding as the term is called today, calls for the need for charismatic leaders.
A book is always judged by the cover. What is attractive gets sold. Also people like to connect and work with those who are presentable. So work on yourself – not just on the physical appearance but also on your internal well-being.
12. Kalyan Guna 12 – Aatmavaankaha: Spiritual
आत्मवान् (ātmavān = courageous)
Lord Rama was a spiritual master. He was well aware of the significance of the atman – the inner soul. Spiritual intelligence goes hand in hand with better engagement and reducing conflict.
13. Kalyan Guna 13 – Jithakrodaha: Calm
जित क्रोधो (jita krodho = one who has controlled his anger)
Ravana was a learned Brahmin himself. He was an ardent devotee of Lord Shiva. He had pleased Lord Shiva by his devotion to an extent where Lord Shiva had bestowed Ravana with His atmalinga. Even then, it is Lord Rama who is worshipped and the only difference is Lord Rama’s ability to stay calm even in the fiercest situations. Lord Rama was said to have had complete control over His emotions, including anger.
Mastering anger is different from controlling anger. We can control anger in certain situations but can lose its control sometimes. But once you master you something, its always in your control. Mastering anger means understanding the trigger for anger and why it erupts. Thus one gets to a situation where he does not get angry. This kind of high emotional intelligence is a great leadership trait.
14. Kalyan Guna 14 – Dyuthimaan: Radiant
द्युतिमान् (dyutimān = brilliant one)
The moment Hanuman had set his eyes on Lord Rama’s face, he felt was shaken. His bones were melting, he felt goose bumps all over his body and tears of joy and love started flowing automatically from his eyes. This is the Tejas or the radiance. Irrespective of who you are or where you work having influence is fundamental to be able to work effectively with people around you and thus vital for your career growth.
15. Kalyan Guna 15 – Anasuyakaha: Admirable
अनसूयकः (anasūyakaḥ = not jealous)
Lord Rama had a very strong control over self and emotions. So, He was neither jealous of anyone, nor did he envy someone. He was far away from greed. A life without comparison, insecurities and complete self-awareness creates a high level of emotional maturity
16.Kalyan Guna 16 – Bibyati devaha: Dreaded
बिभ्यति देवाःबिभ्यति देवाः च जात रोषस्य संयुगे. = even whom do the gods fear, when provoked to war)
During the war, when Ravana attacked, Lord Rama was patient – far away from being angry. However, the moment Ravana attacked Hanuman, Lord Rama got terribly angry and started to fight Ravana in the war and eventually defeated him. Lord Ram never got angry when He was abused, but he did when his devotee was and he was then feared by all living beings in the world.
What were the principles followed by Lord Rama?
Lord Shri Ram is the epitome of Truth, Honesty and Morality. Truth personified, He is the most ideal man in all respects – spirituality, values, conduct, relationships and probably everything under the sun we can think of. Because of all the above qualities, Lord Ram is known as Maryada Purshottam( the perfect man).
The Principles followed by Lord Ram:
- He never deviated from the path of truth and Dharma.
- He was the ideal son, husband, brother, disciple, friend and above all the ideal King.
- Lord Ram was a Sat purushah — a person with innate goodness, he was always calm and peaceful.
- He was satyadharmaparaayanah — always an adherent or embodiment of truth, morality and dharma.
- He was the epitome of Morality.
- He had the quality of kshama — a forgiving nature.
- He was wise, and brave . He was without asooya (envy), never spoke ill of anyone nor treated anyone badly.
- He had control over his senses, had patience and had the quality of gratitude too.
- He had mastery and skill over all kinds of weapons and had equally mastered the Vedas too.
- Lord Ram was intelligent, brilliant in everything he did. He was eloquent and flexible. He was brave , fearless and had transcendental qualities and yet he was simple and his simplicity influenced many people.
- He was noble, generous, respectful and humble therefore loved by everyone.