Yadav prakash was stunned to see Ramanuja’s clarity and devotion. However instead of celebrating his student’s talent, he felt threatened. He knew he had a rival in house. Plotting to kill the young Ramanuja, Yadav Prakash organized a pilgrimage to Kashi. The plan was to kill him on the way, and then atone for the sin by bathing in Ganga. Only a select few of Yadav Prakashs’s students knew of this evil design. However, during the journey, Ramanuja’s cousin Govinda who also studied in the same school, learnt of it and immediately alerted Ramanuja. On a quiet night when the party rested in a forest, Ramanuja fled deep into the woods.
Once he had run a far distance away, he realized he was lost and surrounded by wild animals in a dangerous forest. Just then out of nowhere, an effulgent and unusually attractive hunter couple, dressed in deer skin, appeared before Ramanuja. He was wonderstruck to see their majestic appearance. Instantly devotional sentiments filled his heart, and tears swelled up in his eyes. The hunter asked the young Ramanuja, “You seem to be lost in this forest, young man, are you alone?”
“Not any more”, Ramanuja replied; he was now crying tears of joy. The couple helped Ramanuja cross the forest. They walked the whole night, and during the journey, Ramanuja’s love for his worshipable Lord Vishnu and His consort mother Lakshmi grew million fold in his heart. After a few hours, the man turned to Ramanuja and said they could all take rest for some time before continuing the journey. A little while later Ramanuja woke up and to his astonishment discovered that the couple had disappeared, and he was right outside the town of Kanchipuram. He realized the hunter couple was none other than his worshipable Lord Varadraj and Goddess Lakshmi. He ran to the temple of Varadraj and offered prayers of gratitude and love. He was now under the shelter and protection of his Lord.
Meanwhile Yadav Prakash and his students woke up to discover Ramanuja was missing. Govinda spun a yarn; he said how he saw a wild boar chase Ramanuja and Ramanuja had drowned in the river. Yadav Prakash feigned sadness, but internally rejoiced at the news. Further, he thought he was saved from committing the sin of murder. Happily he returned to Kanchipuram. Soon however he discovered Ramanuja was alive and Ramanuja even resumed his studies in school. He explained to his teacher how he was saved by someone in the river, and he returned to Kanchipuram safely.
While Ramanuja humbly continued to serve his spiritual master, Yamunacharya returned to find Ramanuja. Again he realized Ramanuja is serving the mayavadi guru, and he left, realizing the time is not right. Yamunacharya continued to pray to Lord Vishnu to release Ramanuja from the clutches of this deviant guru. He fervently desired that Ramanuja would spread the Sri Vaishnav teachings.
To be continued…