Scene 1

(Rama’s palace. Rama has invited all his ministers and priests to discuss a serious matter. Everyone has arrived except his preceptor, Vashishtha. Vashishtha has a special seat of his own. Suddenly a man of very low caste enters and deliberately sits on Vashishtha’s seat.)

EVERYONE NEARBY: Get up! Get up!

A MINISTER: How dare you sit on this seat? This is Vashishtha’s seat. He is the preceptor, the Guru of King Rama.

(Enter Vashishtha.)

VASHISHTHA: Why is this man sitting on my seat? (To the man.) How dare you sit there? I shall kill you! Rama, if you are a true disciple of mine, you must kill this rascal.

(Rama gets his bow and arrow. The man runs for his life.)

VASHISHTHA: Rama, you have to kill this rogue, this infidel! I can give you only three chances at most. If you fail in your first attempt, you can try two more times. And if you fail in your third attempt to kill him, I will think you are a useless archer.

RAMA: You know I have killed Ravana, the King of the Demons. Is there anyone I cannot kill on the first attempt, O Vashishtha, O peerless Sage? I assure you, either I shall kill that fellow where I find him, or I shall bring him here.

VASHISHTHA: No, Rama, I don’t want you to bring him here. Just kill him wherever you find him. God knows where he is by now.

RAMA: With your blessing let me leave.

(Vashishtha blesses Rama. Exit Rama.)

Sri Chinmoy, Supreme sacrifice, Sky Publishers, New York, 1973