Bed of Roses


Married life IS a bed of roses - be careful though - it comes with thorns too.

Scriptures are not read to simply go over the same old stories again and again and again.  We all know the characters, the plots, the outcomes, the highs and the lows.  Why bother reading the same story again and again and again ?  Unless we aim to learn from these scriptures, truly, why bother reading again and again and again !

Various examples of married lives are highlighted in our scriptures.  We have to decide which one of those couples do we want to be.  Great tales are made of great people.  Their lives are termed “extraordinary" by the way they dealt with adversities in life.  We all face adversities in life, each and every one of us.  How we deal with it sorts us out on a scale from ordinary to extraordinary.

Satyavan & Savitri, Atri & Ansuya, Shiva and Shivaa are still honoured as amazing role models of married couples because of the way they dealt with the good and bad times that came in their lives.  Emulate such wonderful couples by absorbing the qualities they exhibit to make your own marriage extraordinary.  They dealt with situations we all face at one time or another. How would you cope with life threatening illness, knowing that the life of your life partner is in imminent danger ?  How do you deal with sudden arrival of unexpected guests ?  How would you react to unplanned children ?  When in-laws or parents say something about our partner that may be hurtful, how should you deal with it ?  What should you say or not say ?  These are just some of the questions we can get answered by looking at the lives of people highlighted in our scriptures.

Even in adversity, or rather especially in adversity, have faith that your life partner is looking out for your good.  Even when reason and logic fails, have faith in your life partner to look out for you for life.  If you have faith, you will not falter.  Love and faith are essential glue that will bind you for life.  Nala and Damayanti had their fair share of adversities, but their mutual faith in the skill and ability of each other kept them steadfast against all odds.

Communication, accommodation and understanding are key to a good marriage.  Here are a few golden rules -
* Never speak ill of your in-laws - it upsets the other person just as it would upset you if your family was bad mouthed.  Rukshmani never had a cross word with Krushna because neither complained about each others in-laws.  Even though her brother provoked many mini crisis, the couple never let that come between them.
* Never spew bile just because someone else did it to you. If someone else has vomited poison, adding to it won't clear anything up.  If you vent your fury and take out hurt going back to year dot, it will only foul the atmosphere and make you both upset.  Patience and silence are wonderful tools.  Shiva often goes into deep mediation rather than dwell on poison others spill at his feet.
* Respect each other.  You both have skills in different areas of life.  Appreciate that and work as a team.  Draupadi knew each of her husbands had a unique talent and nurtured it accordingly.
* Saying "sorry" takes just a second but it will save you hours - if not days - of hurt feelings.  Be genuine though.  Don't say sorry just for the sake of it.  Nothing ruins a great relationship like stubbornness.  If only Ahalya and Gautama rishi had said sorry to each other !  It would have saved decades of living side by side like stones.
* Don't take each other for granted.  Though you are one, you are also individuals.  Respect that.
* Show respect to each other, especially in public.  Seeing how you treat each other will influence how others treat you and your partner.
* Never cut off the other partner in a conversation.  Its rude, disrespectful and causes hurt.
* Get to know each other.  It's the sweetest thing about being a couple.
* Be open to ideas.  You may not have tried something your partner says is good.  Trust his / her judgement and "give it a go".  Having a partner means you now have the benefit of tapping into his / her lifetime of experiences.  Have Trust.  Give it a go !  Be bold !
* Love, respect and understanding is more nourishing than food.
* Remember there is no "I" in a team.  You are now a team of two.  Become one.

Shiva Shivaa, Vashishtha Arundhati, Uttanpada Suruchi Suneeti, Styavan Savitiri, Kardam Devhuti, Jamadagni Renuka, Rama Sita, Krushna Rukshmani, Pandavas Draupadi or any hundreds of other couples mentioned in the scriptures are great examples for us to look at.  Lives of these couple gives us an idea of how they dealt with crisis that came up in their married lives.  Looking at these, we can decide what to do, not do or what to avoid in our own lives.

Your life's canvass is blank at present.  Colour it with your own design and colours.  By all means, look to your ancestors and scriptures for inspiration, but you have to make your own way in your own life.  All I have given here are examples.  Make your life so great, it should be an example for others to emulate in time to come.  You have now started a new life, in a new house, in a new country in a new relationship.

In good times, plan for the lean times.  Enjoy the blessings of good times and remember to make the most of it.  Don't forget each others' needs even when everything is rosy.  Remember, roses have thorns too.  Handle with care to enjoy the sweet scent of married life.


For further information on some of the great people mentioned here, visit other pages on this site.


© Bhagwat    [email protected]


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