bAla kANDa

Book I : Bala Kanda - The Youthful Majesties
Verses converted to UTF_8 Sept, 09

Chapter [Sarga] 15


King Dasharatha commences the putrakaameSTi ritual aiming to beget progeny, under the aegis of Sage Rishyasringa. The celestial beings gather to receive the oblations offered in the Horse Ritual conducted by King Dasharatha. They are perturbed at the atrocities of Ravana, and request Brahma to think for a way to eliminate Ravana. Vishnu arrives there and pacifies Brahma and other celestials with an assurance that he will incarnate as human to eliminate Ravana.

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मेधावी तु ततो ध्यात्वा स किञ्चिदिदमुत्तरम् |
लब्धसंज्ञः ततस्तं तु वेदज्ञो नृपमब्रवीत् || १-१५-१

1. tataH = then; medhaavii vedaj~naH = intellectual one, proficient in Veda; saH = Rishyasringa; kimchit dhyaatvaa = thinking a little; tataH labdhasanj~naH = then, gaining indication; tam nR^ipam abraviit = to him, to King, said.

That intellectual sage and one proficient in Veda-s Rishyasringa contemplated for a while, and gaining indications as to which ritual is to be performed, then said the king. [1-15-1]

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इष्टिं तेऽहं करिष्यामि पुत्रीयां पुत्रकारणात् |
अथर्वशिरसि प्रोक्तैर्मन्त्रैः सिद्धां विधानतः || १-१५-२

2. aham te putrakaaraNaat = I, to you [for your benefit,] for the reason of sons [to beget]; atharvashirasi proktaiaH = said in [contained in]atharva Veda's preamble; mantraiH siddhaam = available with hymns [of that Veda,]; putriiyaam = one that bestows sons [called putrakaameSTi,] for begetting sons; iSTim vidhaanataH kariSyaami = I will conduct ritual procedurally.

"I will procedurally conduct the ritual contained in the preamble of atharva-veda with procedural hymns, called <<em>>putra kaameSTi i.e., the ritual that bestows sons, for your benefit." [1-15-2]

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ततः प्राक्रमदिष्टिं तां पुत्रीयां पुत्रकारणात् |
जुहाव चाग्नौ तेजस्वी मन्त्रदृष्टेन कर्मणा || १-१५-३

3. tataH = then; putrakaaraNaat = for purpose of begetting sons; putriiyaam idam iSTim taam = that son giving ritual; praakramat = commenced; tejasvii = resplendent sage; mantradR^iSTena karmaNaa = hymn-contained, with ritual-acts; agnou juhaava cha = oblated in fire, also.

Then that resplendent Sage Rishyasringa commenced that putrakaameSTi ritual, offering oblations into sacred fire with ritual acts meticulously contained in hymns. [1-15-3]

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ततो देवाः सगन्धर्वाः सिद्धाश्च परमर्षयः |
भागप्रतिग्रहार्थं वै समवेता यथाविधि || १-१५-४

4. tataH = then; sagandharvaaH = with celestials; devaaH siddhaaH cha paramarSayaH = then, deities, siddha-s, also, esteemed saints; bhaagapratigrahaartham vai = to receive their due [of oblations], verily; samavetaaH yathaavidhi = assembled, as per duty.

Then the deities along with celestial beings, siddha-s, i.e., the souls that obtained salvation, and also other esteemed sages who by now are the residents of Heavens have duteously assembled in the firmament to receive their part of the oblations. [1-15-4]

These celestial beings having attained salvation and living in their heavenly abodes do not re-enter these mortal worlds. They assemble in their cosmic zone, up above the Fire Altar of the Vedic ritual whenever a yajna is conducted on earth, to receive oblations.

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ताः समेत्य यथान्यायं तस्मिन् सदसि देवताः |
अब्रुवन् लोककर्तारं ब्रह्माणं वचनं ततः || १-१५-५

5. taaH devataaH = those, gods; yathaanyaayam = as per procedure; tasmin sadasi = in that, congregation; sametya = coming together; lokakartaaram = to worlds' creator; brahmaaNam = to Brahma; vachanam abruvan = words, said.

Those deities who procedurally assembled there in that congregation then spoke to Brahma, the creator of worlds. [1-15-5]

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भगवंस्त्वत्प्रसादेन रावणो नाम राक्षसः |
सर्वान्नो बाधते वीर्याच्छासितुं तं न शक्नुमः || १-१५-६

6. bhagavan = oh god; raavanaH naama raakShasaH = Ravana, named, demon; tvat prasaadena = with your, blessings - as you have blessed him; viiryaat = by his intrepidity; naH sarvaan baadhate = is torturing all of us; tam shaasitum na shaknumaH = we are unable to control him.

"Oh! God, the demon named Ravana is torturing all of us with his intrepidity, as you have blessed him, and we are unable to control him. [1-15-6]

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त्वया तस्मै वरो दत्तः प्रीतेन भगवान् तदा |
मानयन्तश्च तं नित्यं सर्वं तस्य क्षमामहे || १-१५-७

7. bhagavaan = Oh god; priitena tvayaa = appreciating [his ascesis,] by you; tasmai varaH dattaH = to him - Ravana, boons, given [by you]; tam = that boon of yours; maanayantaH = keeping high regard for it; tadaa nityam = from then, always; tasya sarvam kShamaamahe = all [his cruel acts,] of his [Ravana,] we are tolerating.

"You have given boon to him appreciating his ascesis and oh, god, with high regard to that boon of yours we are tolerating all the cruel acts of Ravana from then onwards [1-15-7]

Hindu mythology has no devils, but has only raakshasa -s, who can hardly be called demons, either. Not all the raakshasa-s are evil-doers. Some of the raakshasa-s are the fallen angels who take birth as mortals. They have their Vedic education, and they perform Vedic rituals and penance etc., thereby they get the patronage of any one of the gods among the Hindu Trinity, viz., Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva. On attaining the cherished boons, they suddenly revolt against their own patron deities and commence the atrocities only to conquer the Heavens, knowing well that they cannot be attained with a mortal body. In order to snub the upsurge of such violence or the unnatural ascension to Heaven, the deity who gave the boons seeks the help of any of the other two of the Trinity. Then one from the Trinity will take birth as mortal, as an incarnation of god on earth. Usually Vishnu incarnates himself to eradicate the evils created by the intrepid raakshasa-s.

Here the celestials bring in a preamble for Vishnu's incarnation as Rama and thus the topic of Ravana occurs in this chapter of Ramayana. Ravana need not be taken as an evil spirit, devil, hobgoblin or a monstrous being. He is said to be a Brahman well versed in all Vedas, musicologist, and a great king of Lanka, with unlimited riches, and very many of his clansmen with their vast dominions, and what not. Though Brahma and Shiva bless Ravana with boons, Ravana flouts all the norms in conquering Heavens in which course he did not hesitate to torture anyone who becomes his personal hurdle or hindrance. Hence it is inevitable for the Trinity to curb Ravana's atrocities, and Vishnu will now be requested by all the deities to incarnate himself on earth. As such, the expression of the word "DEMON" may not always be taken as an ugly and monstrous looking devil or Satan, as per the usual religious conceptualisation of evil.

In Hinduism evil is not a separate entity from humans, but available in the same personification and resides along with virtue, like the two sides of a coin. These raakshasa-s are also mortals, extraordinary beings with extraordinary powers like god incarnates. But, with wickedness in their will, monstrosity in mind and a conqueror's ambition in their heart, they are rendered themselves as demons.

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उद्वेजयति लोकांस्त्रीनुच्छ्रितान् द्वेष्टि दुर्मतिः |
शक्रं त्रिदशराजानं प्रधर्षयितुमिच्छति || १-१५-८

8. durmatiH = that evil minded one - malevolent; triin lokaan udvejayati = he is tormenting three worlds; ucChritaan dveSTi = he is hating functionary deities of cosmos; tridasharaajaanam shakram pradharSayitum icChati = desires to assail Indra, the king of celestials.

"That malevolent Ravana is tormenting all the three worlds, hating the functionary deities of cosmos, and always desires to assail Indra, the king of all the functionary deities of universe. [1-15-8]

There are eight functionary gods for cosmos in Hindu mythology that keep the cycle of natural law going. Each one is assigned with each of the eight sides of the universe along with a natural function. They are: 1] Indra, Heaven : East, 2] agni Fire-god : southeast, 3] yama Death-god : South, 4] naiR^iti Demon-god : southwest, 5] varuNa Rain-god : west, 6] vaayu Air-god : Northwest, 7] kubera god of wealth management : North, 8] iishaana god of bliss : Northeast. The governance of all these deities is Indra's function, since he is the presiding deity of Heaven.

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ऋषीन् यक्षान् सगन्धर्वानसुरान् ब्राह्मणांस्तथा |
अतिक्रामति दुर्धर्षो वरदानेन मोहितः || १-१५-९

9. durdharShaH = invincible one; varadaanena mohitaH = becoming self-conceited by boon given [by you]; R^iShiin yakShaan sagandharvaan asuraan = sages, yaksha-celestials, with gandharva-celestials, demons; tathaa braahmaNaan = like that, Brahmans are also; atikraamati = overbearingly [torturing.]

"That invincible one is further self-conceited by the boons you have accorded, and he is overbearingly torturing the sages, celestial beings like yaksha-s, gandharva-s, asura-s, and like that even the Brahmans. [1-15-9]

The sura and a-sura nomenclature is the one that is commonly found in Vedic literature. sura is a celestial being and asura is its antonym, usually referred as a demon. Here it is not so because there are many asura-s who made their abode in heaven, like Rahu, Ketu, and others who attain salvation in this mortal life. Even Ravana came from Heaven, and returns there only at the end of the war with Rama. Thus a-sura-s are not earthly demons but celestial beings of a kind like other demi-gods, namely yaksha, gandharva, kinnara, kimpurusha etc.

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नैनं सूर्यः प्रतपति पार्श्वे वाति न मारुतः |
चलोर्मिमाली तं दृष्ट्वा समुद्रोऽपि न कंपते || १-१५-१०

10. enam suuryaH na pratapati = sun will not parch him; maaruthaH paarshve na vaati = Air-god will not puff at his sides; chalormimaalii = the lord of undulating waves; samudraH api = ocean, even; tam dR^istvaa na kampate = will not pulsate on seeing him [Ravana].

"The Sun-god will not verily parch Ravana, the Air-god will not puff at his sides, and on seeing Ravana, the lord of the undulating waves, namely the ocean will not pulsate either. [1-15-10]

And ocean hides those undulating waves from Ravana for the waves are his wives whom Ravana may abduct as in the case of Seetha.

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तन्महन्नो भयं तस्माद्राक्षसाद्घोरदर्शनात् |
वधार्थं तस्य भगवन्नुपायं कर्तुमर्हसि || १-१५-११

11. tat = by that reason; ghoradarshanaat tasmaat raakShasaat = from that demon with an awesome sight; naH mahat bhayam = great panic for us; bhagavan = oh god; tasya vadhaartham = for purpose of his elimination; upaayam kartum arhasi = apt of you to make an idea.

"Thereby, there is a great panic for all of us from that demon with an awesome look, hence oh, god, it will be apt of you to give a thought for his elimination. [1-15-11]

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एवमुक्तः सुरैः सर्वैः चिन्तयित्वा ततोऽब्रवीत् |
हन्तायं विदितस्तस्य वधोपायो दुरात्मनः || १-१५-१२

12. sarvaiH suraiH evam uktaH =[Brahma] is spoken this way by all gods; chintayitvaa tataH abraviit = on thinking, then, said; tasya duraatmanaH = that, evil minded one's; ayam vadhopaayaH = this is the, idea for elimination; viditaH hanta = known, aha.

When all the deities spoke to Brahma thus, he thought for a while and then said "Aha! The idea to kill that evil-minded Ravana is discerned. [1-15-12]

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तेन गन्धर्वयक्षाणां देवतानां च रक्षसाम् |
अवध्योऽस्मीति वागुक्ता तथेक्तं च तन्मया || १-१५-१३

13. tena = by him [Ravana]; gandharvayakShaanaam = for gandharva-s and for yaksha-s; devataanam ca raakShasaam = by gods and other demons, also; avadhyaH asmi iti = I shall be not killable, thus; vaak uktaa = words, were uttered [by Ravana]; mayaa cha tat tathaa iti uktam = thus that way said by me.

"Ravana said while seeking boon that, 'I shall not be killed by gandharva-s, yaksha-s, or by gods, or by other demons...' and I also said 'so be it..." [1-15-13]

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नाकीर्तयदवज्ञानात्तद्रक्षो मानुषांस्तदा |
तस्मात् स मानुषाद्वध्यो मृत्युर्नान्योऽस्य विद्यते || १-१५-१४

14. tat rakShaH = that, demon; avaj~aanaat = with disrespect; tataH = then; maanuShaan na akiirtayat = not articulated about humans; tasmaat = therefore; saH maanuSaat vadhyaH = he can be killed by human; [asya = his] mR^ityuH na anyaH vidyate = otherwise death is not evident.

"That demon did not express about humans then with his disrespect to them, and evidently his death does not occur otherwise." So said Brahma to gods. [1-15-14]

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एतच्छ्रुत्वा प्रियं वाक्यं ब्रह्मणा समुदाहृतम् |
देवा महर्षयः सर्वे प्रहृष्टास्तेऽभवंस्तदा ||१-१५-१५

15. brahmaNaaH samudaahR^itam = well explained by Brahma; etat priyam vaakyam = this, pleasant, word; shrutvaa = having heard; tataH = then; te devaaH maharSayaH = those, gods, great sages; sarve prahR^iSTaaH abhavan = all became delighted.

On hearing Brahma explaining himself, then all those gods and great sages became adequately happy. [1-15-15]

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एतस्मिन्नन्तरे विष्णुरुपयातो महाद्युतिः |
श्ङ्खचक्रगदापाणिः पीतवासा जगत्पतिः || १-११५-१६
वैनतेयं समारुह्य भास्करस्तोयदं यथा |
तप्तहाटककेयूरो वन्द्यमानः सुरोत्तमैः || १-१५-१७

16, 17. etasmin antare = in the mean while; mahaadyutiH = great resplendent god; shankhachakragadaapaaaNiH = [with] conch disc mace in his [four] hands; piitavaasaaH = [with] yellow robes; jagatpatiH = Lord of Universe; vainateyam samaaruhya = mounted on Lady Vinata's son, GaruDa; bhaaskaraH toyadam yathaa = Sun, on water giver [sun on black cloud,] like; taptahaaTakakeyuuraH = burnt [refined,] gold, bracelets; vandyamaanaH surottamaiH = while eulogised, by the best gods; viSNuH = Vishnu; upayaataH = arrived.

In the meanwhile the great resplendent Vishnu, the Lord of the Universe, arrived there mounted on his Eagle-vehicle Garuda, handling conch-shell, disc, and mace in his three of four hands, clad in yellow-ochre robes, wearing golden bracelets, and while best gods eulogised him, and his arrival there is like the arrival of sun mounted on black cloud to accord the gratuitous gift called the rain. [1-15-16, 17]

Vishnu is a four handed deity. He handles a Divine Lotus suggesting that he is the creator sR^iSTikartaa. An ever-cycling disc called sudarshana-chakra is handled symbolising his ever-lasting dynamism. He is the maintainer of that continuous dynamism of already created Universe sthiti-kartaa. A mace called kaumodakii for bludgeoning enemies as he is the eradicator of evil samhaarakartaa, and a conch-shell called paanchajanya which produces the sound of Om, listening to which salvation, mukti, is achieved by the true devotee. The sound of the same conch shell gives out an unbearable sound in respect of enemies. He is entered here without a lotus in hand. That means there is no need for a creation afresh. The other items he is handling are enough to deal with Ravana. If the Lotus is not handled that hand is taken as a blessing hand, abhayahasta. And now he is giving that a+bhaya no fear, an assurance, to all gods.

The expression that Vishnu has come on his eagle-vehicle has a cross-reference to the previous chapter's garuDa-yajnavedi , Eagle-shaped Altar of Fire that is laid by priests of Dasharatha. It will be laid so with assumption that Garuda, also called suparNa, the Divine Eagle will fly in to transport oblations. The Vedic ritual is also called suparNa, the golden winged, or great winged vehicle to conduct oblations. And the eagle-vehicle of Vishnu is the quickest carrier of oblations to the deities specified in Vedic hymn. Here this Garuda has already carried the oblations offered by King Dasharatha to the chanting of Vedic hymns by Sage Rishyasringa to Vishnu. So Vishnu is now coming mounted on the same meritorious carrier, namely Garuda. Secondly the simile of Sun's coming mounted on a black cloud has some thing to do with yajna. A silver cloud is no value in giving rains. The rain has got an inseparable combination with Vedic ritual. Since the ritual of Dasharatha is going to fructify the rainfall is due on earth. Hence, the sun on collecting all the merits called the rituals of Dasharatha, in the form waters is coming riding on a black cloud to shower rains. Hence Vishnu and Sun both are ready now shower their graces. Vishnu will shower grace by eradicating the evil called Ravana, and the sun by showering the gratuitous and cooling rains.

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ब्रह्मणा च समागम्य तत्र तस्थौ समाहितः |
तमब्रुवन् सुराः सर्वे समभिष्टूय संनताः || १-१५-१८

18. brahmaNaa samaagamya = having met with Brahma; tatra tasthau samaahitaH = there, he stood, contemplating; suraaH sarve sannataaH = gods, all, bowing down; tam samabhiSTuuya abruvan = said to him on offering prayers.

Vishnu having met Brahma stood there contemplating, and then all of the gods on bowing down and offering prayers addressed Vishnu. [1-15-18]

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त्वां नियोक्ष्यामहे विष्णो लोकानां हितकाम्यया |
राज्ञो दशरथस्य त्वमयोध्याधिपतेः विभोः || १-१५-१९
धर्मज्ञस्य वदान्यस्य महर्षिसमतेजसः |
अस्य भार्यासु तिसृषु ह्रीश्रीकीर्त्युपमासु च || १-१५-२०
विष्णो पुत्रत्वमागच्छ कृत्वात्मानं चतुर्विधम् |

19, 20, 21a. viSNo = oh Vishnu; lokaanaam hitakaamyayaa = desiring prosperity in all worlds; tvaam niyokShyaamahe = we nominate you; viSNo = oh Vishnu; tvam ayodhyaadhipatiH vibhoH = you are lord of Ayodhya's ruler; dharmaj~nasya vadaanyasya = of that virtuous one, renowned one; maharSisamatejasaH = equalling sage in resplendence; asya dasharathasya raaj~naH = such a, king Dasharatha's; hriiisriikiirtyupamaasu = having similitude with virtue affluence glory; trisR^iSu = in three of them; bhaaryaasu = in his wives; aatmaanam chaturvidham kR^itvaa = on making [on transforming] yourself, four fold; putratvam aagacCha = you get childhood [take birth].

"Oh! Vishnu, desiring prosperity in all the worlds we nominate you to become the son of the ruler and lord of Ayodhya, namely Dasharatha, who is a virtuous one, renowned one and one whose resplendence equals that of the sages, and oh, Vishnu, through the wives of such a king Dasharatha, who are in similitude with the hrii, the virtue, shrii, the affluence, and kiirti, the glory, you have a fourfold transformation and take birth as their son. [1-15-19, 20, 21a]

These three hrii, shrii, kiirti are the daughters of Daksha Prajapati in their earlier births. The hrii is hR^illekha , virtuous disposition - which Queen Kausalya has, and who begot Rama. The shrii is shriikaara , the affluence of everything, which Queen Sumitra has, by which alone she magnificently and unhesitatingly advises her son Lakshmana to go along with Rama to woods. And the third, kiirti, the glory, and the glory of Kaika is well known. The position of this epic minus Kaika can be imagined, thereby her glory, may it be negative, that may be imagined.

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तत्र त्वं मानुषो भूत्वा प्रवृद्धं लोककण्टकम् || १-१५-२१
अवध्यं दैवतैर्विष्णो समरे जहि रावणम् |

21b, 22a. viSNo = oh Vishnu; tvam = you; tatra = in them [the wombs of queens]; maanuSaH bhuutva = on becoming [taking birth] as human; pravR^iddham = who is exacerbating; lokakanTakam = one who is thorny to worlds; daivataiH avadhyam = not killable by gods; raavaNam samare jahi = Ravana be killed in war.

"Oh! Vishnu, on your taking birth as human through the wives of Dasharatha you eliminate Ravana in war, who has become exacerbating and thorny to all worlds, and who is otherwise not eliminable for gods. [1-15-21b, 22a]

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स हि देवान् सगन्धर्वान् सिद्धांश्च ऋषिसत्तमान् || १-१५-२२
राक्षसो रावणो मूर्खो वीर्योद्रेकेण बाधते |

22b, 23a. saH muurkhaH raakShasaH = he, preposterous, demon; Ravana; devaan = gods; sagandharvaan siddhaan cha R^iSisattamaan = with gandharva celestials, souls of salvation, eminent hermits; viiryodrekeNa baadhate = torturing with his invigorated doggedness.

"He that preposterous demon Ravana with his invigorated doggedness is torturing gods along with eminent saints, gandharva-s, and siddha-s. [1-15-22b, 23a]

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ऋषयश्च ततस्तेन गन्धर्वाप्सरसस्तथा || १-१५-२३
क्रीडन्तो नन्दनवने रौद्रेण विनिपातिताः |

23b, 24a. tataH = by his insolence; tena raudreNa = by him, the furious one; R^iSayaH cha = sages, also; tathaa = like that; nandanavane kriiDantaH = those that are delighting in Nandana gardens[Heavenly gardens]; gandharvaapsarasaH = gandharva-s, apsara-s; vinipatitaaH [ vi-ni-paatitaH completely, down, thrown] = are knocked down [from heavens.]

"He that furious one with his insolence is knocking down sages from their celestial abodes, and like that he is knocking down the gandharva-s and apsara celestials too from the heavenly gardens Nandana, where they will be taking delight. [1-15-23b, 24a]

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वधार्थं वयमायातास्तस्य वै मुनिभिः सह || १-१५-२४
सिद्धगन्धर्वयक्षाश्च ततस्त्वां शरणं गताः |

24b, 25a. vayam = we; siddhagandharvayakShaaH = siddha-s, gandharva-s, yaksha-s - the celestial beings; saha munibhiH = with, sages; tasya vadhaartham aayaataaH vai = we have come for the purpose of his elimination, actually; tataH tvaam sharaNam gataaH = thereby, [we all] we have gone in your shelter.

"We the celestial beings like siddha-s, gandharva-s, yaksha-s along with sages have actually come for his elimination, and thereby we seek shelter in you. [1-15-24b, 25a]

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त्वं गतिः परमा देव सर्वेषां नः परंतप || १-१५-२५
वधाय देवशतॄणां नृणां लोके मनः कुरु |

25b, 26a. paramtapa = oh others [enemies] tormentor; deva = oh Vishnu; tvam naH paramaa gatiH = you are, our, ultimate, course; devashatR^iNaam vadhaaya = to eliminate divinity's enemies; nR^iNaam loke = in human's, world; manaH kuru = make mind [give a thought.]

"Oh, enemy tormentor, oh, Vishnu, you are the ultimate recourse for all us in eliminating enemies of divinity, hence you make up your mind to take birth in human world." The gods appealed to Vishnu that way. [1-15-25b, 26a]

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एवं स्तुतस्तु देवेशो विष्णुस्त्रिदशपुंगवः || १-१५-२६
पितामहपुरोगांस्तान् सर्वलोकनमस्कृतः
अब्रवीत् त्रिदशान् सर्वान् समेतान् धर्मसंहितान् || १-१५-२७

26b, 27. tridashapungavaH = the Supreme among divinities; sarvalokanamaskR^itaH = revered by all worlds; deveshaH = god of gods'; viSNuH = Vishnu; evam stutaH tu = this way, when eulogised; sametaan = to those that are in assemblage; dharmasamhitaan = abiding in righteousness; pitaamahapurogaan = keeping ahead Forefather Brahma- at helm of affairs; taan sarvaan tridashaan abraviit = spoke to them, all, celestials.

When the god of gods Vishnu, the supreme one among deities, one who is revered by all worlds is eulogised this way, then he spoke to all of those celestials that abide in the righteousness and that are in the assemblage, keeping the Forefather Brahma at their helm. [1-15-26a, 27]

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भयं त्यजत भद्रं वो हितार्थं युधि रावणम् |
सपुत्रपौत्रं सामात्यं समित्रज्ञातिबान्धवम् || १-१५-२८
हत्वा क्रूरं दुराधर्षं देवर्षीणां भयावहम् |
दश वर्ष सहस्राणि दश वर्ष शतानि च || १-१५-२९
वत्स्यामि मानुषे लोके पालयन् पृथिवीमिमाम् |

28, 29, 30a. bhayam tyajata = get rid off fear; bhadram vaH = safety, be upon you; vaH hitaartham = your, welfare's sake; saputrapoutram = along with his sons, grandsons; saamaatyam = along with his ministers; samitraj~naatibaandhavaan = along with his friends, cousins, and relatives; kruuram duraatmaanam = cruel, evil minded one; devarSiiNaam bhayaavaham = dreadful one for deities and sages; raavaNam yudhi hatvaa = eliminating Ravana in war; imam pR^ithiviim paalayan = while ruling this earth; dasha varSha sahasraaNi = ten, thousand years; dasha varSha shataani cha = ten, hundred years, also; maanuSe loke vatsyaami = I will reside in human world.

"Get rid off the fear, let safety be upon you, on eliminating that cruel and evil-minded Ravana who became dreadful to deities and sages, along with his sons, grandsons, friends, cousins and relatives, ministers and forces too in war for your welfare, I will then reside in human world ruling this earth for eleven thousand years." Thus Vishnu assured the gods. [1-15-28, 29, 30a]

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एवं दत्वा वरं देवो देवानां विष्णुरात्मवान् || १-१५-३०
मानुषे चिन्तयामास जन्मभूमिमथात्मनः |

30b, 31a. aatmavaan viSNuH devaH = kind-hearted, Vishnu, the god; devaanaam evam varam datvaa = this way on giving boon to gods; atha aatmanaH maanuSe = then, for himself, in human [world]; janmabhuumim chintayaamaasa = started to think of birth base [instituting point].

On giving boon to all gods in that way the kind-hearted god Vishnu started to think about the instituting base for his birth in human world. [1-15-30b, 31a]

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ततः पद्मपलाशाक्षः कृत्वात्मानं चतुर्विधम् || १-१५-३१
पितरं रोचयामास तदा दशरथं नृपम् |

31b, 32a. tataH = afterwards; padmapalaashaakShaH = lotus petal eyed one [ Vishnu]; tadaa = then; aatmaanam chaturvidham kR^itvaa = on making [agreeing to make] himself into four-fold; dasharatham nR^ipam = Dasharatha, King; pitaram rochayaamaasa = predisposed to select as his father.

And then that lotus-petal-eyed one agreeing to manifest himself in fourfold way is predisposed towards Dasharatha to be his father. [1-15-31b, 32a]

There is a great lot of discussion whether Vishnu made himself fourfold as Rama, Lakshmana, Bharata an Shatrughna, or he himself incarnated along with his main ingredients like conch shell, disc, mace as those three brothers. This verse says that he 'made himself, or agreed to make himself as fourfold.' Even then, there are discussions that Rama is a 'full incarnation' puurNa avataara as the Supreme is indivisible - on one account. And his brothers cannot be reckoned as his incarnation  as they become parts of the whole but not the 'whole' itself he did not divide himself on the other account. And the tradition believes that Vishnu did not divide himself but incarnated in one piece, where his brothers are his paraphernalia. There is no unanimity on this, as yet.

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तदा देवर्षिगन्धर्वाः सरुद्राः साप्सरो गणाः |
स्तुतिभिर्दिव्यरूपाभिस्तुष्टुवुर्मधुसूदनम् || १-१५-३२

32b, c. tadaa = then; devaaH = gods; R^iSigandharvaaH sarudraaH saapsaraH ganaaH = with sages, with gandharva-s, with groups of rudra-s, apsara-s; divyaruupaabhiH stutibhiH = divine in form [in exposition,] with prayers; madhusuudanam = killer of Madhu [the demon] -Vishnu; tuSTuvuH = extolled.

Then all the groups of gods, sages, gandharva-s, with rudraa-s, and apsarasa-s, extolled Vishnu with prayers of divine exposition. [1-15-32b, c]

Vishnu in early times killed a ghastly demon called Madhu and his brother Kaitabha, hence He is also called Madhusuudana. This is one the thousand names of Vishnu.

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तमुद्धतं रावणमुग्रतेजसम्
प्रवृद्धदर्पं त्रिदशेश्वरद्विषम् |
विरावणं साधुतपस्विकण्टकम्
तपस्विनामुद्धर तं भयावहम् || १-१५-३३

33.tam = that particular one - who is renowned for evil acts - Ravana; uddhatam = an egoist; ugratejasam = furiously fiery one; pravR^iddhadarpam = one with heightened arrogance; tridasheshwaradviSam = hater of lord of gods - Indra; viraavaNam = [one who makes everyone to] high wails; tapasvikanTakam = a thorn in sides to sages ; as such;  tapasvinaam bhayaavaham = he who is a fright for hermits ; tam raavaNam saadhu uddhara = such as he is - him, eliminate that Ravana [give final emancipation, deliver him from curse].

"Oh! Vishnu, he that fiery one who is renowned for evil acts and who is the hater of Indra, that Ravana is uprising furiously with his heightened arrogance, and he has become a thorn in the side of hermits hence he is a fright to sages, afor he tortures insubordinates to the the extent of loud wailing; hence we pray you to eliminate that Ravana." [1-15-33]

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तमेव हत्वा सबलं सबान्धवम्
विरावणं रावणमुग्रपौरुषम् |
स्वर्लोकमागच्छ गतज्वरश्चिरम्
सुरेन्द्रगुप्तं गतदोषकल्मषम् || १-१५-३४

34. sabalam sabaandhavam = with all his forces, with all his kinsmen; viraavaNam [kR^itvaa] = without pandemonium [on making worlds]; ugrapauruSam = furiously vainglorious; tam raavaNam eva hatvaa = thus, having killed that Ravana; chiram = for a long time to come; gatajwaraH = rid of febrility; surendraguptam = lord of gods - by Indra, made inaccessible, safeguarded; gatadoSakalmaSam = [and one which is] rid of flaws and blemishes; swarlokam aagacCha = return to [your] heavenly, abode [Vaikuntha] .


34. sabalam sabaandhavam = with all his forces, with all his kinsmen; viraavaNam [kR^itvaa] = without pandemonium [on making worlds]; ugrapauruSam = furiously vainglorious; tam raavaNam eva hatvaa = thus, having eliminated that Ravana; chiram = for a long time to come; gatajwaraH = rid of febrility; surendraguptam = lord of gods - by Indra, made inaccessible, safeguarded; gatadoSakalmaSam = [and one which is] rid of flaws and blemishes; swarlokam aagacCha = [your] heavenly, abode [Vaikuntha,] return to.

"On eliminating that furiously vainglorious Ravana with all his forces and with all his kinsmen neutralise the pandemonium created by him in all the worlds, and for a long time to come you get rid of your febrility, and you please return to your heavenly abode, namely your blameless and faultless Vaikuntha. [1-15-34]

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इति वाल्मीकिरामायणे आदिकाव्ये बालकाण्डे पञ्चदशः सर्गः ||

Thus, this is the 15th chapter in Bala Kanda of Valmiki Ramayana, the First Epic poem of India.

Verse Locator for Book I : Bala Kanda - Book Of Youthful Majesties : Chapter 15

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© 1999, Desiraju Hanumanta Rao [Revised: April 04]



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