Friday, 27 February 2015

236. Hanuman decides his next plan of action

   While going away from Seetha, Hanuman, the vanara started thinking like any wise human "By His grace I located Seetha. Though I am very eager to go and inform Rama, I feel somebody seems to be telling me to stay back and do something important. What is that? Hmm.... Gotcha! It is now certain that Rama will land here at Lanka along with the army of Sugreeva. It is therefore, my duty to do something in this regard that will help Rama. I have to do it NOW before leaving Lanka. As a single  vanara army I cannot adopt the first three strategies for success viz. sowing dissension, negotiation and bribery for the following reasons.  In the case of Ravana, the strategy of negotiation is not practicable. For a person having abundant wealth, the strategy of bribery will be ridiculous. For persons who are proud of their strength, the strategy of sowing dissension is not amenable. I think that I can implement here the fourth strategy viz. open assault. Prowess is agreeable for me here. Barring display of valour, no other strategy in accomplishing this task seems to be appropriate in these circumstances. The rakshasas here are very likely to underestimate me, a vanara in the combat that will ensue with me. I can surprise them by killing some of their foremost heroes.
       "How can I incite them? And as I have not fought before, I wonder how I will fare in the combat that will ensue? Any how if I am captured, I can  then meet Ravana with his troop of ministers. And I am likely to get some info about his army as well as his designs and strength. I will then go back from here doubly happy.
         "Now how can I make Ravana's soldiers come to capture or kill me? Hmm... By doing something very unpleasant, of course! I see this excellent grove of the cruel Ravana, with its various kinds of trees and creepers, which is pleasing to the eyes and the mind, is looking like Nandana, Indra's paradise. I will destroy this grove like fire scorching a dried up forest. While this grove gets demolished, Ravana will then definitely become angry.
       "The angry Ravana will then order for an army consisting of horses, great chariots and elephants and armed with weapons like great tridents and spears made of iron. Seeing me, a vanara they will smile with an amusement. They will think that a couple of them can easily get and bound me. But they will be in for a mighty surprise. I will kill or at least maim as many as I could before I return happily to the place of Sugreeva."
       Hanuman then  started to throw away  the trees in the royal pleasure-garden attached to the gynaecium by violent jerk of his thighs. Hanuman, apart from damaging the trees in that grove, also destroyed the ponds and crushed the tops of pleasure hills to powder. Thus, that beautiful looking grove became nasty to look at. Hanuman made that grove look like one destroyed by a wild fire. Those creepers with their bars of support displaced, fell down like distressed women. With its arbours and picture-galleries destroyed, its great serpents and wild animals emitting cries of distress, its grottos and other structures demolished, that grove became defaced.
      That woody land of that pleasure-garden which afforded shelter to the women-folk of Ravana and which had clusters of Ashoka creepers became a jumble of creepers of sorrow for the distressed women by the violence of Hanuman.
         Having accomplished what he planned, Hanuman was waiting for the reaction of Ravana.
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Wednesday, 25 February 2015

235. Seetha bid adieu to Hanuman finally.

            Seetha was highly pleased to hear the most encouraging,  inspiring, comforting, cheering, stimulating, reassuring and heartening words of Hanuman. She was at a loss to find appropriate words to thank him. She however, did her best by "O Dear Hanuman, I am overjoyed to hear your most comforting and encouraging words. Hearing your words I felt like the field with half-sprouted crops of grain thrilled by receiving a rain.
        "O Hanuman! please do not forget to tell Rama the story of the crow. Please also tell him that I asked him to recollect  his effacing a mark on my forehead once, and that another mark painted by him on my cheek. Please ask him on my behalf 'Why are you, the valiant man equal to Indra, the Lord of celestials and Varuna the King of Universe, ignoring me, your dear wife Seetha, who was taken away and now staying in the midst of these rakshashas? O faultless Rama! This wonderful jewel for the head has been protected well by me. Seeing this in my distress, I have been getting delighted, as though I was seeing you. This splendid jewel is sent to you. 
          " 'Absorbed in grief, I shall not be able to survive for long. With the hope of your coming here shortly, I am enduring these unbearable hardships as well as the words of these horrible rakshasies, which pierce my heart.
          " 'O Rama the prince, the annihilator of enemies! I shall hold my life for a month only. I will not survive without you, after a month. This Ravana, the king of rakshasas, is terrible. I get a terrible nausea whenever he looks at me. If I get an inkling  that you are procrastinating, I will not survive even for a moment.' "
           Hanuman was very much moved to hear Seetha's words. He told her "O Seetha the princess! Rama, grieving so much for you has grown averse to everything. I swear it to you truly. when Rama is overpowered by grief, Lakshmana too gets tormented with grief.
      "O lady! By His grace, you have been discovered by me. This is not the time to lament. You will see the end of your sorrow shortly. Those two princes are eager to see you. They will surely reduce Lanka to ashes. Killing the cruel Ravana along with his relatives, Rama and Lakshmana will take you to their own city.
         "O faultless Seetha! Be pleased to give another token of remembrance, which Rama will recognize and be pleased."
        Seetha replied, "The jewel I already given to you is quite adequate. Seeing this jewel for my hair, Rama will trust your words.
         "O Hanuman! Enquire about the welfare of Rama and Lakshmana, the brothers looking like lions, of Sugreeva together with his ministers and of all other. Be pleased to make that long-armed Rama deliver me from this ocean of sorrow. O valiant vanara! After approaching Rama, appraise him of this terrific gush of my grief and also about the threatening attitude of these rakshasis.
           "There is no point to retain you any longer. Have a happy journey! Toodle-oo."
     After saluting Seetha Hanuman left.
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Monday, 23 February 2015

234. Hanuman assures Seetha that she will be rescued by Rama.

          Seetha then told Hanuman "This jewel is very well known to Rama. The sight of this jewel will surely kindle the memories of Rama about the three of us, viz. my mother, myself and the king Dasharatha.
       "O Hanuman! Your enthusiasm and consoling words has made me feel that I will be rescued by Rama from this captivity shortly. Become the one who will ever be remembered by me the one who removed my misfortunes by employing your efforts. If you think hard and carefully, you can surely find a way to remove my misfortunes."
        Hanuman assured her that he will definitely do so and started to go back. Stopping him with the show of her palm (like the present day policeman) Seetha with her voice choked by tears said "O Hanuman, inquire on my behalf about the welfare of both Rama and Lakshmana together. Likewise ask the welfare of Sugreeva together with his ministers and of all the elderly vanaras. Hmm.. Think hard and evolve a strategy through which the long-armed Rama will be able to lift me out this ocean of misfortunes.
      "O Hanuman! Tell, in whatever manner, by which the illustrious Rama can console me while I am still surviving. Reap righteousness, by helping me through your words. Constantly hearing the words endowed with energy spoken by you, Rama's manly strength will be  heightened to recover me. Hearing my message from you, Rama will surely accelerate his efforts."
        Hanuman replied "I will definitely do so madam. Rama along with a massive army of vanaras and bears will come over here shortly and rescue you after killing Ravana and the rest of the rakshashas. Both of us know very well that Rama is capable of enduring even the sun-god, Indra the god of rain and even Yama the god of death. Well, I will meet you again shortly after your rescue by Rama."
        Seetha then told Hanuman "Hanuman!  If it is okay for you, stay for a day somewhere here clandestinely without being seen by anyone. After taking rest, you can go tomorrow. O Hanuman! The knowledge that you are in the vicinity,  may give me some relief.
        "O Hanuman! If after that, there is any doubt about your return, then my survival too will be doubtful. There is no ambiguity  about this matter. O Hanuman! To me, who is tormented by one grief after another, your disappearance will further torment me, like a burning flame
       "I wonder how the army of vanaras and bears as well as Rama and Lakshmana can cross that great insurmountable ocean? As for as I could fathom only three beings viz. Garuda the eagle,  yourself and the wind-god have the capacity to cross this ocean. That is why I am asking you to evolve some strategy to fulfill this act, which seems to be impassable as well as impossible. You are capable of fulfilling this task. Your perseverance to get the result has already been established.
          "Please invigorate Rama,  Lakshmana and others to take a concerted action to rescue me."
       Hanuman replied "O Seetha the princess! Sugreeva, the Lord of the troops of vanaras and bears is the foremost among them,  endowed with great strength. He is firmly determined in your cause. O Seetha! That Sugreeva, endowed with crores of vanaras, will come soon to destroy the rakshashas. Very many vanaras, endowed with prowess, perseverance, great strength and who can rush to any place as they wish are intensely committed to Sugreeva's command. There is no hindrance to their movement either in the sky or in the ground or in any horizontal region (between the sky and the ground). With unlimited splendour they are not indolent in performing any indomitable task.
          "The earth with its oceans and mountains has been circumambulated clockwise many times by those vanaras, who are highly energetic and follow the aerial path. Some of them are superior to me and some are equal to me. No one in the vicinity of Sugreeva is inferior to me. When I have arrived here, why talk about the mightier ones? Generally, superior ones are not sent for errands.
     "O Seetha the princess! Enough of your lamentation. Push away your sorrow. Those leaders of vanaras will reach Lanka by one single leap. Rama and Lakshmana, those two lions among men also of great strength, ascending on my shoulders, can come to you, like the rising sun and the moon. Coming together, Rama and Lakshmana the valiant and the excellent among men, can destroy the City of Lanka with their arrows.
        "O Seetha with a good waist! Rama, the delight of Raghu dynasty, after killing Ravana together with his troops, will return to his town, duly taking you with him. There is absolutely no doubt about that. Wish you a very happy future! Within a short time, after this king of rakshasas is killed along with his sons, ministers, army and relatives, you will meet Rama, as Rohini* met the moon.
*Rohini: A consort of the moon-god, presiding over a constellation of the same name.
          "O Seetha the princess! You shall see the end of your sorrow soon. Within a short time, you will also see the end of Ravana, destroyed by Rama.
       "That Rama the annihilator of enemies, and Lakshmana wielding his bow in his hand will soon reach the entrance of Lanka and you will see them. You can see soon those valiant vanaras, with their claws and tusks as weapons, having the prowess of lions and tigers and looking like lordly elephants, coming together.
         "O venerable lady! You shall see many troops of excellent vanaras resembling hills and clouds, thundering on the peaks of Malaya mountain in Lanka. Hit in the vitals by the darts of venerable Manmatha the god of love, Rama is not obtaining happiness, as an elephant gets tormented by a lion. O Seetha the princess! Do not weep or grieve. Cast away from your mind all unpleasantness. You  have Rama as your husband and your protector like Shachi having Indra.
        "Who else is there greater than Rama or who else equals Lakshmana? Those two brothers, like fire and wind, are supportive to you. O Seetha the princess! You will not stay for long in this place, which is very terrific and occupied with a multitude of rakshasas. The arrival of your husband is not far away. Be patient till the moment of my meeting Rama on my return."
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Thursday, 19 February 2015

233. Hanuman gets a personal jewel from Seetha as proof.

         Hanuman was totally convinced with the explanation of Seetha for not agreeing to come with him to Rama. He told her "O Seetha, the beautiful princess! Whatever you said is befitting. It is in keeping with the nature and humility of a chaste woman. It is indeed not fit for a woman to mount on my back and traverse an extensive ocean, which is having a width of one hundred yojanas. Another reason you mentioned that you would not be touching any male other than Rama  also conforms your nature of a chaste wife as well as the wife of Rama. O princess! which other lady except you can speak such irrefutable arguments?
         "Madam! I will certainly inform Rama all that you have done and all that you have told me. O princess! Please let me explain why I suggested taking you on my back to Rama.  For a start I was very eager to do something good to Rama with whom I have developed great affection and devotion. Another reason is the unassailability of Lanka. And its great ocean is so difficult to cross by an army and I have the capability of crossing it alone or taking you. Because of my great respect and devotion towards you, I thought it to be a very good idea. Other than these I had no ulterior motive.
      "As you have explained to me that it was not a good idea to take you with me to Rama, I request you to give me something which will prove beyond any doubt that I actually met you. I may add that the same may be something Rama will recognize beyond any reasonable doubt."
             Seetha looked at Hanuman for a long moment and then smilingly said "Let me tell you a certain incident happened in the forest. It is known only to my lord Rama and me. When you tell this to Rama, he will know that you must have heard it only from me and that will be a sufficient proof that you have met me.
           "I happened at a place inhabited by sages at a hillock. It was bountiful with roots, fruits and water. In that place, while we were residing in a hermitage of sages, one day we were strolling in water in parts of groves with various kinds of flowers of perfume. My lord became wet and sat at my proximity for getting himself dried.
       "Then, a crow, yearning for meat, began to peck at me. Picking up a clod of earth, I dissuaded  the crow from its act. But it was pestering me by pecking at me again and again. While I was trying to drive away that bird, my skirt was slipping and I was pulling its string (so as to tighten it). I was seen by Rama then. He laughed.
        "I became very angry and feeling abashed for being laughed at. Chased by the crow, which was yearning for food, I sought shelter with him on his laps, feeling tired and angry. Seeing my angry face he consoled me with such words, which turned my anger to delight.
            "Then as I was tired I started sleeping on Rama's lap. In his turn, Rama slept, too.
    "Seeing us in this manner, the same crow, descending all of a sudden clawed me at the space between the breasts. I tried to drive it away. But the crow was persistent and it tore me up a lot. I started bleeding and blood drops fell on Rama causing him to wake up. Seeing me severely hurt on the breasts, he, hissing like an angry serpent asked me 'O Seetha! Who wounded you like this?' As I was very much wounded and in great pains I could not reply. Then, throwing a glance around, Rama saw that crow with its sharp claws moistened with blood sitting in front of us.
       "I came to know later that crow was the son of Indra, the Lord of celestials, staying in mountains and moving with the speed of wind. Then, taking a blade of Kusa grass from the ground, Rama set it on the crow. That grass turned into a Brahmashtra (a mythical weapon which deals with infallible destruction) and started chasing that crow in the sky.
        "Wherever the bird few the grass was chasing him.  Hanuman, my Rama's weapons do not hit or kill a running enemy. Trying to evade the weapon, the crow roamed all over the three worlds in search of a saviour. No one, including his dad, Indra was in a position to save him. Finally, as advised by some sages, it came back and sought refuge in Rama.
            "You know that Rama is very  compassionate and kind-hearted. He told the crow 'You know that once the Brahma-Astra is set on someone, it cannot be withdrawn without hitting the enemy or at least doing some physical harm to the enemy. Now you tell me what am I to do?'
        "Thereafter, that crow said 'Please make your arrow take my right eye.' Rama agreed. At the cost of its right eye in that way, the crow saved its life. After offering salutations to Rama the crow returned to its own abode.
          "O Hanuman! please convey my this appeal to my lord of the earth! 'For my sake you hurled a Brahma-Asthra even at a crow. Why are you forgiving the rakshash who has taken me away from you? O Rama, man par excellence! You, with great strength, annihilate this offender and bestow your mercy on me. O Lord! I, who has a protector in you, actually looks like one without any protector.
       " 'You yourself told me that kindness is the best righteousness. I know you a man having a great prowess, a great energy and a great strength. I know your non-acquiescence, imperturbability and profoundness.
        " 'O Rama! Even though you are strong, exceptionally skilled in archery and a truthful man, why are you not utilizing your arrows on these rakshashas here at Lanka? Neither the serpent-demons, nor the divine musicians nor the asuras nor the storm-gods are able to resist either you or your brother Lakshmana in battle. Why are you not showing any haste in my case and destroy the rakshashas with your sharp arrows?
      " 'If you have bidden Lakshmana, the tormentator of enemies, the mighty and the valiant man would have rescued me. Why you two tigers among men, with a sharpness equal to that of wind and fire, unconquerable by asuras too, are neglecting me? Have I committed any great sin, due to which  you two brothers, the tormentors of enemies, despite being capable, are neglecting me?' "
      Hearing the pitiable appeal of Seetha with tears, Hanuman consoled her with "O Seetha! Rama has grown averse to everything else, caused by the grief towards you. I swear it to you by truth. When Rama is overpowered by grief, Lakshmana too follows suit. O faultless Seetha! Somehow or other, you have been found by me. This is not the time to lament. Your will see the end of your sorrow within a short time. Those two mighty princes par excellence, are eager to see you and they will reduce Lanka to ashes.
       "O large-eyed Seetha! Killing the cruel Ravana along with his relatives in battle, Rama will take you back to his own abode. Tell me what to be expressed to Rama, the mighty Lakshmana, the splendorous Sugreeva and  the other vanaras assembled there."
          Seetha replied "On my behalf, salute by bowing your head and ask about the welfare of Rama, the Lord of the worlds, whom the magnanimous Kausalya gave birth. On my behalf, ask about the welfare of Lakshmana, that good child of Sumitra, who, having renounced the wreaths of flowers, all the riches, pleasant and beautiful girls and even the prosperity difficult to be obtained in this extensive world, offered his profound respects to and pacified his father and mother, followed Rama to exile.
     "Renouncing a great comfort, the righteous Lakshmana, acting in an affectionate manner towards Rama, followed him, watching over him in the forest. Lakshmana, who has broad shoulders like that of a lion, mighty-armed, steady-minded and having pleasant looks, behaves towards Rama as towards his father and looks to me as his own mother.
      "The valiant Lakshmana, on that day of occurrence, did not know that I was being taken away by Ravana. He serves elders. He possesses a splendour. Though capable, he does not talk much. He is the replica of the King Dasharatha, his father and my father-in-law. Lakshmana, the younger brother of Rama is the one who is dear to me always. That energetic Lakshmana carries out well whatever load of work is entrusted to him.
     "Seeing whom, Rama sees his deceased father, that Lakshmana is to be asked about his well-being, as my word and on my behalf. O Hanuman, you are the model for fulfilling this act of addressing him in such a way that Lakshmana, the mild, very-pure, clever and the darling of Rama may bring my sorrows to an end.
        "Please inform Rama that  I can hold my life for a month in anticipation of my rescue by him. I cannot survive after a month. I am telling you the truth."
      Then, taking the bright divine jewel meant for her head but tied in her garment, Seetha gave it to Hanuman, saying that it may be handed over to Rama. Taking that excellent jewel, the valiant Hanuman fitted it to his finger, since his arm (eventhough he had assumed his former tiny form), was too big for it.
         Receiving that jewel, Hanuman offered his salutation to Seetha, by engaging himself in circumambulation and stood aside with humbleness. Filled with a great delight, born out of Seetha's discovery by him, Hanuman mentally sought (the presence of) Rama but stood there with just his physical body.
         Taking that excellent and highly venerable jewel, worn by Seetha and by its influence felt shaken by a blast coming from the top of a huge mountain, Hanuman was mentally pleased and set out for crossing the ocean for his return journey.
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Sunday, 15 February 2015

232. Seetha declined Hanumans offer.

            Seetha whose face now resembled the full moon after hearing the comforting words of Hanuman, told him "O Hanuman! Your info about Rama that he is not having any thoughts other other than about me and is fully overwhelmed by sorrow are like ambrosia mixed with poison. Destiny drags out a man into a very extensive fortune or into a very dreadful adversity, as if being dragged, tied with ropes.
            "O Hanuman,  For living beings, destiny is surely irresistible. See how Lakshmana, Rama and myself are baffled by misfortunes. Rama's endeavor to reach the end of this grief seems to be like  a thoroughly fatigued man, having suffered a ship wreck is swimming in the middle of the sea. When will my husband see me, after annihilating all the rakshasas including Ravana?
           "O Hanuman! Ravana gave me an ultimatum of one year, the tenth month is now running. Only two months are left out. Despite the sensible advice of Vibhishana, his brother about my restoration (to Rama), Ravana is not inclined to do so. My restoration is not agreeable to Ravana.
         "O Hanuman! Nala, the eldest maiden daughter of Vibhishana, when she was sent personally to me by her mother, told me about this. However, I am sure Rama, my husband, will soon regain me.
       "O Hanuman! Rama has the qualities of perseverence, manliness, courage, non-mischievousness, gratitude, prowess and energy. I know well the energy of Rama, as Sachi, the wife of Indra knows the energy of Indra, the Lord of celestials.
       "O Hanuman! I presume that you know very well that Rama is as powerful as the sun."
         Hanuman was completely moved to see  Seetha utterly immersed in grief for Rama.  He wanted to relieve her agony or at least lesson it. He told her "Soon after hearing my words, Rama, with least possible delay will come with a great army of a multitude of vanarass and bears.
     "O Seetha with a charming face! I have an immediate solution to end your grief! Ascend my back. I shall take you to Rama by crossing the ocean. I have indeed the capability to carry even Lanka together with Ravana. 
        "O Seetha! Now itself, you can see Rama together with Lakshmana. You can see them getting ready for a battle to the annihilation of the rakshasas. The mighty Rama, with a gusto to see you, is staying in a hermitage. Do not have any inhibition for riding on my back. You know that Indra himself rides on the back of Airavata the elephant.
          "O Seetha the auspicious princess! Mount on my back. Do not have any hesitation. Be inclined of joining Rama like Rohini, moon's favourite wife, joined the moon. You ascend my back and cross the ocean by journeying through the sky, as though speaking to the greatly resplendent sun and to the moon. O Seetha! While I am taking you from here, no body staying in Lanka is competent to come along to get me.
       "O Seetha! In what manner I reached here, in the same manner, I shall move through the sky, taking you along with me."
        Seetha was quite surprised to hear Hanuman. She was, however very much pleased to hear it. She replied "O Hanuman! How can you carry me for such a long distance? I consider this as your apishness. O Hanuman! With such a small seized body, how can you take me from here to the presence of my husband, Rama?"
       The illustrious Hanuman, the son of Vayu took that question as an affront.  He thought "The black-eyed Seetha is not aware of my strength or power. Now I will let  her see the form I can assume at will." He then started to increase the size of his body.
Hanuman, in his bloated form looked like Meru and Mandara mountains, shining brightly like a blazing fire.
     He then addressed Seetha "O Princess! Look at me now. I have the capability to carry this Lanka along with its hills, forest-areas, market-places, defensive walls and arches together with its Lord Ravana himself. O princess! For this reason, leave your ╦łskepticism and keep your mind steady. Come along with me and make Rama and Lakshmana shed their grief."
      Seetha, with her large eyes resembling lotus-petals, told that terrific Hanuman, the son of Vayu "O Hanuman! I know fully well your courage, strength, your power of movement like that of wind and your wonderful brilliance like that of  fire.
      "How can any other common person cross this unfathomable ocean and reach this place? I know your capacity of carrying and taking me from here. However it will not be befitting of me to go with you. That apart, there are many practical reasons. For a start, your speed like that of wind, may bewilder my mind. Reaching the sky high above the sea, I may fall down out of fear from your back. Having fallen insensible into the sea, which is filled with sharks, crocodiles and giant fish, I may become the best food soon for the aquatic creatures.
     "O Hanuman! It is not possible for me to go with you. You will have the additional responsibility of protecting me. 
      "Those valiant rakshashas sent by Ravana to get you and me, will surround you wielding darts and clubs in their hands. Accompanied by a lady in me, you will be very much handicapped. Many rakshasas will come with their weapons, in the sky. You will be alone without any weapon. How can you continue your travel, while protecting me?
      "While you ward off those cruel rakshashas,  I, stricken with fear, may fall down from your back. O valiant vanara! Then the powerful and terrific rakshasas with their giant bodies may conquer you in battle, somehow or other. I dare not think what they may do with me.
        "In case you fight with them forgetting me, I may eventually fall down. Then, the wicked rakshashas, catching hold of me, may take me again to Lanka. Or they may take me away from your hand, or may even kill me. In battle, victory and defeat are not predictable.
        "Or while I am frightened by the rakshasas, I may get into a mishap. Thus, your effort will become futile. You may be surely able to kill all the rakshasas. But if you alone kill all them, Rama's celebrity will be lowered.
       "Otherwise, the rakshasas may take me away and hide me in some secret place that will not be known to any of Ravana's adversaries. Then your effort taken for my sake will become futile. That is why I desire Rama's coming here along with you.
      "O Hanuman, The survival of Rama, his brothers, yourself and your royal family (of Sugreeva)  lies on my rescue without any inadvertence. Else those two men Rama and Lakshmana who are emaciated by grief and anguish along with all the bears and vanaras will abandon their lives.
       "O Hanuman! Honouring the devotion to my husband, I cannot touch the body of any male (human, deva, etc.) other than Rama. That I got, by force, the touch of Ravana's body, was because being helpless, having lost control of myself and without a protector, I could not do anything. The appropriate course is Rama kills Ravana here along with his relatives and departs taking me from here.
        "I have not only heard but seen myself about the strength of Rama destroying enemies in battle. Neither the celestials nor the divine musicians nor the serpent-gods nor the demons are equal to Rama in combat. Who can withstand in battle that mighty Rama, dazzling like fire fanned by wind, wielding his conspicuous bow and having prowess equal to that of Indra the Lord of celestials, together with Lakshmana?
        "In battle, who can endure Rama resembling the sun at noon-time, with his arrows resembling its rays, the destroyer in battle, stationed like a mythical elephant in rut, along with Lakshmana? You, as such, soon bring my husband here along with Lakshmana, and the chiefs of army with their armies. I am emaciated with grief about Rama since long. Make me now joyful."
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Friday, 13 February 2015

231. Hanuman gives Seetha, the signet ring given to him by Rama.

        After hearing Hanuman, Seetha, was inclined to believe that he was what he claimed to be. She could not however, forget  the way by which Ravana in the guise of a sanyasi cheated her. While she was thinking in this manner, our clever Hanuman guessed her mind  said "O illustrious lady! I am a vanara and a messenger of your dear hubby Rama.....", taking the signet ring given to him by Rama he continued "O princess! Look at this ring, marked with Rama's name. This was given to me by your husband himself. He told me if I show this to you you will believe me for what I am. Happiness to you! Now get rid o your grief. Now, I am sure you will believe what I claim to be."
        Seeing that ring the countenance of that large-eyed Seetha turned like the bright moon the king of stars liberated by Rahu. With a clear mind she said "O Hanuman! You have singly sneaked into this place infested by rakshasas! You are valiant. You are competent. You are intelligent. You, with an acclaimed gallantry, crossed the ocean, an asylum of crocodiles, and of one hundred Yojanas wide, like one would a small puddle. O excellent vanara! For you there is no fear nor even bewilderment from Ravana. Hence, I do not consider you as an ordinary vanara.
        "O Hanuman! If you are sent by that Rama, who knows the nature of his self, you are well worthy of talking to me. The indomitable Rama would not have sent you to me without knowing your enterprise and without judging you in advance. I am very much relieved to know that Rama the righteous man who is true to his promise and Lakshmana of great splendour who enriches the joy of Sumitra are blissfully safe.
      "If Rama is safe, and Rama  and Lakshmana being capable of holding down even the celestials with their anger, I wonder why are they not scorching the earth with ocean as its belt, like rising fire at the end of the world?  But I wonder when  my troubles would end. Please tell me whether Rama is still continues to be serene without any perturbation. Is he tormented with grief? Is Rama the man par excellence now doing the right acts of the annihilation of his enemies? Is Rama the prince, miserable and confused? Is he mistaken in his actions? I hope he is doing all acts which are possible by human effort.
      "Is Rama quite clear and composed in mind and attitude? Is he, when necessary resorting to the two strategies viz., conciliatory and partaking approaches and the three strategies viz., partaking, sowing dissension and open assault? Is he still kind-hearted towards friends? Is he getting new friends? Has he been approached for friendship? I hope he is having good friends and honored by them. Is Rama the prince wishing the grace of the gods? Is he equally aware of the role of human endeavour and the role of fate?
         "O Hanuman! Is Rama not losing affection in me because of my staying away from home? Will he release me from this evil predicament? Is Rama, who is habituated always to pleasures and not habituated to pains, sinking into despondency by now getting this great pain? Are you constantly hearing the news of safety of Kausalya, Sumitra and Bharata?
         "Is Rama suffering from pain just because of me? Will he liberate me from my sorrow, without fixing his mind on something else? I hope Bharata, having a brotherly affection, will send for my sake, an army furnished with banners, guarded by the ministers, consisting of ten anikinis (21870 elephants, 21870 chariots, 65610 horses and 109350 foot soldiers) which would be terrific in appearance.
          "Within a short time, I hope to see Ravana killed along with his companions in the battle-field by terrific weapons burning brightly. That golden face of Rama with the fragrance of a lotus may be looking miserable without me and getting dehydrated too. I hope it is not parched by the sun, like a lotus. I hope that Rama who left the kingdom as an indication of his righteousness and to whom there was neither disturbance nor fear nor sorrow even while taking me to the forest by foot, continues to be the same in maintaining boldness in his heart. To Rama, in the matter of affection, neither his mother nor his father nor any body else is equal to or more than me. O Hanuman the messenger! I wish to survive only as long as I hear the activities of my beloved."
         After saying and asking whatever she wanted to say and know, Seetha fell silent expecting a reply from Hanuman.
      The clairvoyant  Hanuman  keeping his joined palms on his head, replied "O Seetha having lotus eyes! Rama does not know that you are here. For that reason, he did not take you back so far, as Indra the destroyer of strong holds did not take back Sachi, his wife. Soon after seeing me, Rama will come here in haste, drawing forth a large army, consisting of a multitude of vanaras and bears.
       "Rama will paralyze the imperturbable ocean with his flood of arrows and make the City of Lanka extinguished of all rakshashas. If the goddess of Death and the celestials along with the rakshashas stand firmly in the way of Rama at that time, he will kill them, too. O noble lady! Being full of grief caused by your non-appearance, that Rama is not at all happy, like an elephant tormented by a lion.
      "O Seetha the princess! I swear and tell you by the mountains Malaya, Vindhya, Meru and Dardura as well as by our staple food of roots and fruits, that you will soon see Rama's face, having good eyes, handsome, having lips with the colour of a bright-red gourd (fruit of Momordica monodelpha) and with its charming look like a rising full moon.
     "O Seetha! You will see soon Rama on the Prasravana mountain, like Indra the Lord of celestials seated on the back of Airavata, the chief of elephants. Rama is not eating meat, nor indulging even in spirituous liquor. Everyday, in the evening, he is eating the food existing in the forest, well arranged for him.
       "With his mind wholly devoted to you, Rama is not even driving away forest-flies from his body, nor mosquitoes nor insects nor reptiles from his body. Rama always cogitates on something or the other. He is forever engaged in sorrow. He is enamoured with the god of love and thinks of nothing else.
        "Rama mostly does not have any sleep. Even if that paragon among men sleeps, he keeps uttering sweet words like "lo! behold! Seetha!". When he happens to see a fruit or a flower or any other beautiful object, he recollects  you and says 'O beloved!' many times and breathes a sigh.
      "O Seetha the princess! Rama the magnanimous prince is always lamenting, speaking just about you, recollecting 'Seetha, Seetha!'. Being firm in his vow, he makes all efforts to find you."
        Seetha, who had the same amount of grief as that of Rama, became worn out upon hearing the adoration of Rama, like a night with the moon obscured by the remnant clouds at the commencement of autumn.
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Tuesday, 10 February 2015

230. Seetha validates the veracity of Hanuman.

          Hearing that narration about Rama from Hanuman, Seetha was at a loss to decide as to whether this vanara was what he claims to be or Ravana.  She thought that if this vanara was Ravana then he would not know or have even seen my lord. Based on this conclusion she asked the vanara "Where was your contact with Rama? How do you know Lakshmana? How did the union between vanaras and the men happen? O Hanuman! What are the characteristics and idiosyncrasies of Rama and Lakshmana? How do they look like? Of what kind was their form? How were their thighs? How were their arms?"
        Hanuman replied "O Seetha with eyes resembling lotus leaves! I feel vastly happy that you are inquiring about the appearance of Rama your husband and his dear brother Lakshmana. It is obvious that you are asking about them despite the fact you know about them pretty well is to check weather I am really what I claim to be. The reply will be my pleasure! O the large eyed  Seetha! the daughter of Janaka! Rama has eyes resembling the petals of a lotus. His handsome features attract the hearts of all living beings. He is endowed with grace and dexterity from birth.
      "He is like the sun in splendour, earth in endurance, Brihaspati in intelligence and Indra in fame. Rama is the tormentor of his adversaries but the protector of the world at large. He is the strict follower of his own behaviour and righteousness. O Seetha! Rama is the protector of the four castes of the world. He is the doer and also the agent for the people's propriety of conduct.
Comment
* Four principal castes described in Manu's code - Brahmanas (priestly class), Kshatriyas (members of military or reigning order); Vaisyas (Traders and agriculturists) and Sudras (class of servitude).
End Comment

       "Rama is a resplendent man. He is respected without any reservation. He is established in a vow of chastity. He knows how to do good to virtuous people. He knows the application and advantage of his actions. He is well trained in statesmanship. He honours brahmins, the priestly class. He possesses sacred knowledge. He is endowed with good conduct. He is a modest man. He got trained in Yajurveda, the sacrificial Veda. He is highly honoured by those well-versed in Vedas. He is skilled in Dhanurveda, the science of archery, as well as in other Vedas and the six limbs* of Vedas.
Comment
Six limbs of Vedas : 1) Siksha, the science of proper articulaton and pronunciation 2) Chandas, the metre 3) Vyakarana, the grammar 4) Nirukta, the explanation of difficult Vedic words 5) Jyotisha, the astronomy or rather the Vedic Calendar. 6) Kalpa, the ceremonial represented by a large number of Sura works.
End Comment

       "O princess! Rama has broad shoulders and long arms. He has a shell-like neck. He has an handsome countenance. He has a hidden collar-bone. He has beautiful red eyes. His fame is heard about by people far and wide. He has a voice like the sound of a kettle-drum. He has a shining skin. He is square-built. His limbs are built symmetrically. He is endowed with a dark-brown complexion.
        "He is ever firm in  the breast, waist and fist, long in the eyebrows, arms and soles, uniform in  his locks, testicle and knees, elevated in his breast, rim of his navel and lower abdomen, coppery in  the navel, the lower abdomen, the rims of his eyes, nails, palms and soles, soft in  the lines on his soles, hair and the end of the membrane virile. And always deep in the three (viz. the voice, gait and the navel).
        "He has three folds in the skin of his neck and belly (i.e. the six-pack).  He is depressed at three places (viz. the middle of his soles, the lines on his soles and the nipples). He is undersized at four places (viz. the neck, virility, the back and the shanks). He is endowed with three spirals in the hair of his head. He has four lines at the root of his thumb (denoting his proficiency in the four Vedas). He has four lines on his forehead (indicating longevity). He is four cubits tall (96 inches). His four pairs of limbs (viz. the cheeks, arms, shanks and knees) are equally matched.
        "He has fourteen other pairs of limbs (viz. the eye brows, nostrils, eyes, ears, lips, nipples, elbows, wrists, knees testicles, loins, hands, feet and thighs) equally matched. The four large teeth at both the ends of his upper and lower jaws are very sharp. He walks in four gaits (resembling the walks of a lion). He is endowed with excellent lips, chin and nose. He has five glossy limbs (viz. the hair, eyes, teeth, skin and soles). He has eight long limbs (viz. the arms, fingers and toes, eyes and ears, thighs and shanks - the eighth is left to your imagination.)
    "Rama has ten lotus-like limbs (viz. the countenance, the mouth, the eyes, the tongue, lips, palate, breasts, nails, the hands and the feet). He has ten ample limbs (viz. the chest, the head, the forehead, the neck, the arms, the heart, the mouth the feet, the back and the ears). He is spread through by reason of three (viz. splendour, renown and glory). He is doubly pure (on father's and mother's side). He is elevated in six limbs (viz. the flanks, the abdomen, the breast, the nose, the shoulders and the forehead). He is small, thin, fine or sharp in nine (viz. the hair, the moustaches and the beard, nails the hair on the body, the skin, the finger-joints, the membrum virile, acumen and perception). He pursues religious merit, worldly riches and the sensuous delight in three periods (viz. the forenoon, midday and afternoon).
        "Rama is engrossed in truth and righteousness. He is a prosperous man. He is interested in reception and facilitation. He knows how to apportion place and time. He speaks affectionately with all.
       "The invincible Lakshmana, the son of Rama's step-mother and Rama's brother, is resembling Rama in appearance, affection and in qualities. Rama and Lakshmana, the two tigers among men, very anxiously desirous of seeing you and searching all over the earth, came in contact with us.
      "Those two brothers Rama and Lakshmana, wandering in search of you only all over the earth, saw Sugreeva the Lord of vanaras, sitting on the top of Rishyamuka mountain, filled with several trees, having been exiled by his elder brother, oppressed with fear, but who was pleasant to the sight. We are serving that Sugreeva, who was true to his promise, but was expelled from the kingdom by his elder brother.
          "In the meanwhile, those two brothers Rama and Lakshmana, wearing clothes made of bark and arming the most excellent bows, came to the charming place of Rishyamuka mountain. Seeing Rama and Lakshmana, the men par excellence, coming with bows in hand, that Sugreeva was deluded with fear and jumped over to the hill-top of that mountain. Thereafter, hiding on that hill-top, that Sugreeva sent me  to approach those two brothers.
       "As ordered by Sugreeva, I approached those two brothers, Rama and Lakshmana, endowed with good forms and characteristics. Those two brothers, Rama and Lakshmana, the two paragons of mankind  and fully endowed with kindness, after knowing the exact position about Sugreeva agreed to meet him. Then, carrying Rama and Lakshmana on my back  took them to Sugreeva's place.
         "I informed  Sugreeva about the true status quo of Rama and Lakshmana. After a mutual conversation between those two brothers and Sugreeva, a great friendship has been synthesized between them. Thus endowed with friendship, Sugreeva and Rama the man par excellence, by talking together of their earlier misfortunes, developed mutual confidence.
     "Thereafter, Rama came to know of the banishment of Sugreeva from the kingdom by Vali, the elder brother of Sugreeva for the sake of Ruma a woman. Then, Lakshmana informed Sugreeva  about the sadness of Rama born out of your disappearance.
        "Thereafter, all those multitude of your ornaments dropped on to the earth by you while being carried away by Ravana, were brought and shown to Rama. But Sugreeva did not know the further course of your movement.
      "Those ornaments were given to Rama, who after receiving and examining them  lost his consciousness and the resounding ornaments were scattered all over. Then Rama looking like god, kept those beautiful ornaments of yours in his flank and lamented in many ways.
      "While seeing those ornaments, Rama was lamenting and getting choked repeatedly. Thus, those ornaments increased Rama's grief. That grief-stricken mighty man was thus lying on the floor for a long time. Then, with great difficulty, I consoled and made him to get up.
         "Rama's grief increased enormously whenever he was seeing those ornaments. His trembling with grief was like a high mountain trembled by a great earthquake. O princess! In not seeing you, Rama has become devoid of any delight, even while moving in those quite charming forests, encompassing rivers and water-falls.
         "O Seetha the daughter of Janaka! That Rama the man par excellence will receive you soon after killing Ravana and his army. That day when Rama and Sugreeva were together, both of them made an agreement that Rama would kill Vali and Sugreeva would find you by employing a large number of vanaras.
      "Thereafter, Rama killed Vali the king of vanaras at Kiskindha. After killing Vali, Rama made Sugreeva the king for the entire multitude of bears and vanaras. O princess!  Know me as Hanuman, who has come here as a messenger  of both of them.
     "After getting the kingdom, Sugreeva summoned all the mighty as well as capable vanaras and sent them to all directions to search and find you.
     "An excellent vanara named Angada, the only son of Vali, was sent to the southern direction.  He was assisted by a large army of vanaras and I am a part of that army.
       "A number of days and nights passed, filled as we were with grief, having got lost our way intensely in a mountain-range called Vindhya. We were determined to forsake our lives because of despair in not finding you despite our overstepping the time-limit given by Sugreeva and in fear of him.
     "Having searched in places difficult of access in forests, at mountains and at cascades and not obtaining any indication of you, we were ready to give up our lives. O Seetha! Seeing all the excellent vanaras sitting down and calmly awaiting death, Angada was very much immersed in the ocean of sorrow and lamented about your loss, the killing of Vali, the death of Jatayu and our  calmly awaiting the approach of death by simply sitting down. For us who lost all our hopes on our lives and willing to give up our lives for failing to implement the command of Sugreeva, as though for the sake of our need alone, a great valiant bird approached us.
       "Hearing about the killing of his brother, the vulture-king Saampaati, the brother of the slain Jatayu, the King of vultures asked us to tell him who, where and how his younger brother Jatayu was killed. Then, Angada told Saampaati a detailed account of the events which led to the killing of that great bird at Janasthana, by a rakshash of terrific form, for your sake. O Seetha with an excellent waist! Hearing about the slaughter of Jatayu, that Saampaati the son of Aruna was very much pained and said that you were kept here by force in the custody of Ravana.
       "Hearing those delightful words of Saampaati, we started soon from there. All of us were very much delighted and satisfied. We immediately left the Vindhya mountain and reached the northern shore of the ocean. Most of the vanaras were frightened on seeing the ocean.
      "Thereafter,  I was asked to cross the hundred Yojanas across the sea. I did. Entering Lanka in night I started my search. I saw Ravana and many other rakshashas and rakshasies. After a concerted effort, I have found you here immersed in grief. O the faultless princess! I told you all this as actually occurred. I am the messenger of Rama. Talk to me.
       "O princess! I made an effort on Rama's behalf and have come here for your sake. I am Sugreeva's minister. I am the son of Vayu (wind-god). Know me, as such. Your Rama, the man par excellence among all the wielders of bow, is safe. Lakshmana, who is following his brother is also safe. 
        "O princess! I, who is interested in the welfare of the valiant Rama, your husband, have come here alone on the command of Sugreeva. I, who can change my form at will, desirous of finding you, wandering alone without any help, came to this southern direction. I shall remove the anguish of the army of vanaras who are anxious because of your disappearance by informing them about my coming close to you due to my good fortune!
        "O princess! By my good fortune, my crossing of the ocean has not gone in vain. I can get this fame of having seen you because of my good luck. The highly valiant Rama, by killing Ravana the Lord of rakshashas along with his friends and relatives, will release you soon.
          "O Seetha! There is a mountain called Malyavan, which is the best among mountains. From there, a vanara called Kesari went to another mountain called Gokarna. As prayed by gods and seers, that great vanara  called Kesari, my father killed a rakshash named Shambasadana at a sacred shrine near the sea-shore.
          "O Seetha! I am born in the womb of the wife of that Kesari the vanara, by the grace of Vayu, the wind-god. By my activity alone, I am renowned as Hanuman in this world. O Seetha! I described the qualities of Rama, your husband, to cause trust in you. O the faultless princess! Rama will take you from here shortly."
           Seetha was quite satisfied with the narration and was delighted. She shed tears of joy and a thrill of delight. The countenance of that large-eyed Seetha, whose eyes were red white and long was shining like a moon, the king of stars liberated from Rahu the serpent.
        Seetha accepted Hanuman clearly as what he claimed to be and not otherwise. Thereafter Hanuman told her "O Seetha! Tell me what I can do for you and also what is agreeable to you. I am going back now. O Seetha! As desired by the sages, Kesari, the valiant vanara killed a rakshash called Shambasadana in battle. I am a monkey born through wind-god and through his influence I am equal to the wind-god in strength."
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Sunday, 8 February 2015

229. Hanuman reiterates his identity to Seetha.

    


   Hanuman was greatly relieved to hear the words of Seetha which confirmed beyond any doubt that the lady was that Seetha he was looking for. He then told her in his most kindly and affectionate tone and manner "O Seetha the daughter of the king of Videha Kingdom! I am an emissary  of your husband Shri Rama who bid me to find you. My lord Rama asked me to find out about your welfare, too. Your greatly splendorous brother-in-law Lakshmana, himself tormented with grief, performed salutation to you by bowing his head."
     Hearing the news about Rama and Lakshmana, the divine lady, Seetha, with all her limbs thrilled with joy, almost cried "O! My! My! You have brought such a news the kind of which will make even a man of One Thousand years old will jump with joy. This popular adage appears true and  auspicious for me."
     Seetha displayed a wonderful friendly disposition towards Hanuman. Both of them then conversed with each other in full confidence. During the thick of the friendly conversation with Seetha who was afflicted with grief, Hanuman endeavoured to draw nearer to her. This made Seetha suspicious; she got an aching feeling in her mind that this vanara may be Ravana in disguise. She thought "O shame! It was my guilt to tell him all this. He is indeed that Ravana, who is in another guise." That made Seetha  leave that branch of the tree and  sit down on that ground.
        Seeing the reaction of Seetha, Hanuman reared a step and simply saluted her. Seetha, trembling with fear, did not look towards him. Her mind was in a swirl. She argued with herself "If you are Ravana, who made use of this illusive guise, you are causing me a further agony. It is no good. You are indeed the same Ravana, who appeared to me in the guise of a vagrant religious mendicant in Janasthana. 
        "If you have come as Rama's messenger, may you be blessed! Rama's anecdote is very pleasant for me. Hence, I am requesting you to narrate it. You are eroding my mind as a rapid course of stream erodes a river bank. I, who was taken away long ago, is seeing a vanara sent by Rama in this way. Alas! It seems to be dream and how delightful this dream is!
      "If I have seen the eminent Rama together with Lakshmana in my dream, I would not have disheartened. In my case, even my dream is wicked! I do not deem it as a dream. Seeing a vanara in a dream does not bring about prosperity. But prosperity seems to have come to me!
         "It must be a delusion of my mind. May be it is the impending course towards the changing mental condition of madness. Is it a looming mirage? Otherwise, it is either madness or even a delusion, which is a symptom of madness."
        Thus deliberating upon the strengths and weaknesses in several ways, Seetha finally concluded him to be Ravana. Then, that slender waisted Seetha, the daughter of Janaka, thus having made up her mind, did not reply in return anything further to Hanuman.
       Guessing the contemplation of Seetha, Hanuman the son of Vayu started to tell her the following which, he was positive will convince her that he was not Ravana but Hanuman, the trusted emissary of her dear hubby "Rama has a great splendour like that of the sun. He is pleasing to all like the moon. As Kubera, the Lord of wealth, he is the lord to the entire world. Like Vishnu, he is greatly renowned and endowed with valour. Rama is a speaker of truth. Like Lord Brihaspati, he has a sweet voice. He is a handsome man, possessing good fortune and a royal dignity. He is a personified Manmadha, the lord of love.
        "Rama gets anger only at right time. He strikes a befitting person at a right time. He is an excellent chariot-warrior. The world is resting under the shelter of the arms of this high  man  par excellence. Showing an illusory antelope, Ravana detracted Rama and took you away from a deserted hermitage. You will see the consequence Ravana will get for this act.
      "Which valiant Rama with arrows strongly shining like sparkles released with anger, by the same Rama I was sent here as a messenger and I arrived at your presence. That Rama, agonised by your separation wishes to enquire of your welfare. That long-armed Lakshmana too, having a great splendour and who augments the happiness of Sumitra his mother, saluted you and inquired about your welfare. O princess! That vanara called Sugreeva, a companion of Rama and the king of all the vanaras, asked about your welfare.
        "Rama, together with Sugreeva and Lakshmana, is always recollecting you. O Seetha! Even though coming into the control of these rakshashies, you are somehow surviving by your good luck! Within a few days, you will see Rama, the mighty Lakshmana and the highly splendorous Sugreeva, in the presence of crores of vanaras. I am a vanara, a minister of Sugreeva, called Hanuman. I entered the city of Lanka, by traversing the great ocean.
        "I have come to see you. O Princess! I am not the one  you comprehend me (as Ravana). Let your suspicion be given up. Believe me what I say."
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Thursday, 5 February 2015

228. Seetha confirmed her identity to Hanuman.

             Hanuman, with a coral-coloured face, very bright and the son of Pavan, wearing a humble and innocent look, after getting down from the shimshupaa tree and standing before Seetha did not quite understand the reaction of Seetha on seeing him down from the tree. Anyhow he offered her his salutation by keeping his joined palms on his head and asked her sweetly and politely "O Lady with your eyes resembling lotus leaves, wearing a worn out silken cloth! O, the irreproachable one! You have stood, holding by the hand a branch of the tree. Who are you? Tears of sorrow are gushing down from your eyes, as water is scattered down from two lotus-petals. Why?
         "O auspicious lady! To whom are you born - celestials, asuras, serpent, gandharva  or some other mythical beings? O lovely-faced woman! Who are you among the eleven Rudras who bestow strength, or among Maruts the storm-gods or among eight Vasus the beneficent gods? O Handsome lady with fine hips! You appear to me as a deity.
        "Are you Rohini, endowed with all the best qualities, fallen from heaven, left behind by moon and excellent among stars. O dark-eyed lady! Are you the auspicious Arundhati, who irritated her husband, Vasishta the sage either by anger or by error?
      "O the slender waisted lady! You seem to be lamenting over someone who died. Is he your son, father, brother or husband.  You are sighing a lot. You are touching the earth. You have royal insignia in you. According to these things, I do not consider you a divine woman. Based on the marks on your person and your bodily characteristics, I believe you to be a queen of an emperor and the daughter of a king.
       "Are you that Seetha stolen by force by Ravana from Janasthana? Your miserable state, the super-human beautiful figure and your costume endowed with austerity, surely indicate you the dear wife of Rama."
          Seetha was delighted hear the name of Rama. She became confident  that this vanara must have come from her dear Rama. She said "Of course, I am the daughter-in-law of Dasharatha, eminent among the excellent kings on earth, who understands the nature of the spirit and who torments the army of his adversary. I am the daughter of the noble-natured Janaka, the king of Videha kingdom. 
       "I lived with Rama in his kingdom, rather his dad's, for twelve years, enjoying all the worldly pleasures endeared by  human kind and fulfilling all my desires. Thereafter, in the thirteenth year, King Dasharatha along with his preceptors started to perform anointment of the kingdom to Rama, a nonesuch of Ikshvaku dynasty.
        "While that anointment of Rama was being arranged, a queen called Kaikeyi peremptorily  told Dasharatha, her husband  'If Rama gets anointed for the kingdom,  I shall neither drink water nor take my food until the end to my life. I want Rama go to forest. I want this as the boon you promised years ago.'
        "Hearing the cruel and the horrible words of Kaikeyi and recollecting the boon given to the queen, King Dasharatha who was true to his word, fell unconscious. Then, the aged king, who was firmly established in truth and righteousness, regretfully asked his illustrious eldest son relinquish the kingdom.
       "That nonpareil Rama dutifully and gladly agreed to what his dear dad wanted.
      "Leaving behind his greatly valuable outer garments and wearing garments made of bark, that highly peerless Rama gave up his kingdom willingly and assigned me to his mother. As I could not live with my dear husband being away from me, I insisted on accompanying him to the forest.
     "Adorned with clothes of bark, the incomparable Lakshmana, the rejoice of his friends, got ready to follow his elder brother. Obeying respectfully the command of Lord Dasharatha, we, with a firm resolution, entered the forest, which we have never seen before and which was deep and profound in appearance.
          "While the transcendent Rama  was dwelling in the forest of Dandaka, the evil-minded rakshash, Ravana took me, Rama's wife, away. A period of two months of survival-benefit has been given to me by him. But, after the said two months, I shall give up my life rather than agreeing to become his wife."
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Tuesday, 3 February 2015

227. Seetha is perplexed to see Hanuman.

        Seeing Hanuman, who was tawny coloured like a series of flashing thunderbolts wrapped up in a white cloth and hiding behind the branches of a tree, Seetha was puzzled, confused, baffled and bewildered. Seetha did not expect there a little vanara, beaming like a cluster of Ashoka flowers, with his eyes resembling refined gold and looking humble.
       Seetha did not know what to think, do or say. She wondered whether it was a trick of that villain Ravana. This thought made her bewildered again. Not knowing what to do she started weeping faintly and uttered continuously "O, Rama! O, Rama! O Lakshmana!".
      Seetha realised suddenly that the benign looking vanara was standing humbly just in front of her. She was not sure whether it was a reality or a dream. Seetha, looking at Hanuman, who was having a wide and curved mouth, noticed doing acts as told by Sugreeva the king of vanaras. Seeing this, Seetha lost her consciousness very much and became seemingly lifeless. Regaining her consciousness after quite some time she thought "Today, I saw an ugly creature in my dream, which is forbidden according to a body of scriptures. May it be well with Rama together with Lakshmana and with my father, King Janaka. Maybe this is not a dream. To me, tormented by sorrow and grief, there is indeed no sleep. To me, separated from Rama whose countenance resembles a full moon, there is no happiness for me.
        "Since I am pondering with my mind about that Rama only, and always saying 'Rama! Rama!' thus, conformably I am seeing and hearing a story thus corresponding to he same thoughts. Tormented as I am today by Manmatha, the god of love, longing for Rama, my whole feelings directed towards him and constantly thinking of him alone and in the like manner I am seeing him and  hearing of him alone. I am imagining that my wish is being  fulfilled. Likewise, I am reasoning my wish by my intellect also. There is no concrete form indeed for my wish. Is he, with a well manifested form  speaking to me?
      "My salutation to Brihaspati the Lord of eloquence, together with Indra the wielder of a thunderbolt, to Brahma the self-existent Lord and to the Lord of Fire eating the oblations! Let whatever words spoken by this vanara be true!"
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Sunday, 1 February 2015

226. Hanuman executed his decision.

         Having decided the course of action after a very careful analysis of all the pros and cons, Hanuman started to execute the same.  He started to utter in as sweet and as melodious voice he could muster and just loud enough to be heard by Seetha but not by the guards around her "There was a king named Dasharatha who was very glorious among the kings of Ikshvaku dynasty and had a virtuous disposition. He owned very many chariots, elephants and horses. He became very famous, too. He was excellent in virtues among royal sages. He was equal to the seven sages in austerity. He was born in the lineage of emperors and was equivalent to Indra in prowess. He was keen on harmlessness. He was not vulgar. He was compassionate. He was truly mighty. He was an eminent king in Ikshvaku race. He was endowed with prosperity and was causing to increase prosperity.
    "The king Dasharatha was endowed with royal characteristics, highly prosperous, excellent among kings and famous on earth with its four borders. He was a happy man and gave happiness to others. His eldest son is named Rama. Rama is beloved having a moon-like face. He is the best among all the wielders of the bow and arrows.
      "That Rama who annihilates enemies, is a protector of his own mode of life, a protector of his own people, a protector of every living being and a protector of righteousness. Rama a brave and a true-speaking manby the command of  his old father Dasharatha went on exile to a forest along with his wife and brother. While hunting in that forest, that Rama killed many rakshashas who were valiant and who could assume any form at will.
          "Thereafter, hearing about the killing of the rakshashas including Khara and Dushana the more valiant rakshashas in Janasthana, a part of Dandaka forest, the enraged Ravana took away Seetha, the dear wife of Rama, by deceiving Rama by creating an illusive image of a deer in the forest. Searching the irreproachable lady, that Rama met a vanara called Sugreeva  in the forest. They became friends.
       "Thereafter, Rama the conqueror of enemy's cities and a very strong man, killed Vali and gave away that kingdom of vanaras to Sugreeva. As commanded and sent by Sugreeva, thousands of vanarass capable of assuming forms at their will, are searching for that lady Seetha in all the quarters of the earth. By the words of Saampaati, I, a vanara crossed the ocean having a length of one hundred yojanas for the sake of this broad eyed Seetha.
           "This Seetha has been found by me now according to the same comeliness, complexion and the bodily marks as I was told by Rama."
          Having executed his plan Hanuman waited for the outcome. Seetha was mightily surprised to hear Hanuman. Looking at the Shimshupaa tree, up and down, left and right, she located Hanuman, looking like the sun behind an eastern mountain.
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