Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Karma, Fate, Predestination, Curses, Blessings, Action, and Consequences

As we look at the plot line and dramatic action of Shakuntala, we can see that the unseen forces of destiny are constantly operative:
The king arrives at the hermitage following a deer arriving there just in time to protect them from an onslaught of demons
Shakuntala is chased into his arms by a bee, and they share their first touch over her fallen bracelet.
It is this dream of love come true that actually makes Shakuntala get lost in her own thoughts and her neglect of Durvasas brings forth the curse.
Or is it the ever-present shadow of the demons that are trying to keep Dushyanta and Shakuntala separated? Do they know that the child born of these two will be a great vanquisher of demons, and so work extra-hard to prevent this triumph of goodness? Is is some demonic work that makes Durvasas get so angry that he curses her?
Yet, grace and blessing seem to come back with equal force to meet the challenges of fate. The sage is softened by the intercession of Anusuya. And yet the blessed ring is lost. And yet a carp finds it and it is returned to the king. But too late. The circusmstances create a dynamic tug-of-war between good and evil and keep manifesting in these ways in the action.
Is all of this preparation for the couple to give them what it takes to raise an emperor son?
Are they pawns tossed around by battling forces? Or is the entire nation blessed because of their triumph over suffering through patient faithful endurance?

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