When the demon king Ravan was attacked by Lord Ram and was near his death, Ram asked his brother Lakshman to go to him and learn something which no other person except an erudite Brahmin like Ravan could ever teach him. Ram told his brother, Lakshman “Go to Ravan quickly before he dies and request him to share whatever knowledge he can. A brute he may be, but he is also a great scholar.”
At this Ravan said that if you have come to me as a student then you must sit at my feet because teachers must be respected and you want to learn lessons. Lakshman went to Ravan and this time he stood near his feet. Ravan seeing Lakshman standing near his feet told him secrets that would make anyone’s life successful.
- Value time: Don’t delay in completing any auspicious work. On the other hand, keep delaying the inauspicious work as much as possible. He supported this teaching by saying, ‘Shubhasya Shighram.’ He told Lakshman that he could not recognize Ram and therefore delayed his chances of achieving salvation. If you follow this rule, you can save not only yourself but many other people from being damaged.
- Never Underestimate anybody: He said that he committed the mistake of underestimating humans and monkeys; whom he thought were lesser in strength than a daitya or asura. And as a result, he lost the battle and ultimately cost him his life.
- Never reveal your secrets: Ravan told Lakshman that he made a mistake of telling his life’s secret to his real brother Vibhishan, which ultimately backfired. Ravan called this his biggest mistake of life.
- Never cater to your senses: Ravan said, he had learnt these lessons through bitter experience. Greed arises from attachment to the senses and catering to them. Put them in their proper place; they are windows for knowledge, not channels of contamination. Ravan also told Lakshman about politics and statesmanship: Do not be the enemy of your charioteer, you gatekeeper, your cook and your brother, they can harm you anytime. Do not think you are always a winner, even if you are winning all the time. Always trust the minister, who criticizes you. Never think your enemy is small or powerless, like I thought about Hanuman. Never think you can outsmart the stars, they will bring you what you are destined to. Either love or hate God, but both should be immense and strong. A king who is eager to win glory must suppress greed as soon as it lifts its head. A king must welcome the smallest chance to do good to others, without the slightest procrastination.
After enlightening, Lakshman with wisdom including politics and statesmanship Ravan gets last breath. Ravan takes Ram’s name and dies. Lakshman bows to Ravan and return to Ram.