“Just as a tree starts to blossom during the proper season, so the doer of sinful deeds inevitably reaps the horrible fruit of their actions at the appropriate time.” (Lord Rama speaking to Khara, Valmiki Ramayana, Aranya Kand, 29.8)
अवश्यं लभते जन्तुः फलं पापस्य कर्मणः।
घोरं पर्यागते काले द्रुमाः पुष्पमिवार्तवम्।।
avaśyaṃ labhate jantuḥ phalaṃ pāpasya karmaṇaḥ।
ghoraṃ paryāgate kāle drumāḥ puṣpamivārtavam।।
Friend1: Listen, when something goes wrong, when it is an emergency situation, you call the police.
Friend1: In society, in general. A break-in. A fire. A domestic dispute. Sometimes, they even get called if there is a cat stuck high on a tree.
Friend2: I know they don’t like being on patrol in this way, but you are correct. Their duties seem to expand beyond the general cops and robbers scenario.
Friend1: Of course I am grateful. A civilized society requires law and order. You need a class of people to protect.
Friend2: The Sanskrit word is kshatriya. It is one of the four varnas, which mistakenly gets understood as castes today.
Friend1: What is the difference?
Friend2: Varna means “color.” It is a distinction, and in terms of maintenance of society varna is an occupation. Jati is “caste”, which is something different entirely.
Friend1: Like a status based on legacy.
Friend2: Dependent on birth. An occupation is based on work and qualities, karma and guna. The meaning of kshatriya is “one who protects against injury.” Whether you live in India or not, whether you accept Bhagavad-gita or some other scriptural work as authority, kshatriyas are always needed.
Friend1: As that is firmly established, how do we deal with rogue kshatriyas? The situation where the authority has gone beyond its limits.
Friend2: Where instead of upholding dharma they are following adharma?
Friend1: Dirty cops. Anger and resentment. Targeting innocent individuals. These things happen.
Friend2: Depending on who you talk to, they might believe that the entire system is corrupt, that every person in a kshatriya role is going the wrong way.
Friend1: That is exactly what I was going to say. How do we deal with these injustices?
Friend2: It is nothing new, that is for sure. Parashurama wiped out the entire kshatriya community once because of anger at such issues. Look at King Kamsa described in Shrimad Bhagavatam.
Friend1: The ruler of Mathura?
Friend2: Yes. He put his own sister in jail. She had done nothing wrong. Her husband was forced into that situation with her. Vasudeva and Devaki had to hand over each of their newborn children to Kamsa.
Friend1: He was paranoid about something a voice from the sky had told him.
Friend2: Whatever the case, is it right to put innocent people in jail? Do you know what Kamsa did with those children?
Friend1: He threw them against stone. Abortion in the most violent way.
Friend2: Can there be any greater injustice than that?
Friend1: Makes you feel sad.
Friend2: This is the way of the world, unfortunately. You can’t expect everyone to follow dharma. In Kamsa’s case the Supreme Personality of Godhead eventually arrived to deliver the punishment. Always have firm belief in that.
Friend1: That Krishna will take care of the issue?
Friend2: One way or another. Usually, karma-phala arrives at the appropriate time on its own. Shri Rama confirms this in the Ramayana. The consequence is commensurate with the original act in defiance of dharma. The degree of deviation gets rewarded appropriately.
Friend1: Okay, but sometimes we don’t get to see the punishment. The sinners stay where they are, untouched.
Friend2: Give it time. Be patient. Know that God is antaryami. Everywhere are His eyes. He witnesses everything, including our acts in devotion. Our prayers, our offerings, our heartfelt sentiments, our humble pleas, our noble attempts to remain conscious of Him – none of it goes unnoticed.
Though proper way knowing,
Sometimes cops rogue going.
So that people then to fear,
Of dire situation clear.
Justice how then handled,
Where authority living in scandal?
From Shri Rama’s teaching know,
That fruits in time for sinner to grow.