Ayodhya-kanda - Doha 51 to 60

Sri Ramcharitmanas is a great Hindu scripture and poetic classic written by Goswami Tulsidas.

Doha - 51

The mind of Sri Rama (the Hero of Raghu's race) resembled a young elephant (newly caught) with kingship for its chain. When He heard of the proposal for exiling Him to the forest He took Himself as freed and felt overjoyed in His heart.


The Crown of Raghu's race, Sri Rama, joined both His palms and cheerfully bowed His head at His mother's feet. She blessed Him and clasped Him to her bosom and scattered jewels and raiment around Him (in order to protect Him from evil).The mother kissed His lips again and again with tears of affection in her eyes and her limbs thrilling over with joy. Seating Him in her lap she pressed Him once more to her heart, while milk flowed from her graceful breasts due to excess of love. Her affection and joy were altogether beyond description; it seemed as if a pauper had attained the position of Kubera (th god riches) Fondly regarding His lovely countenance the mother spoke to Him in endearing terms; "Tell me, dear child --I beseech you; -- when will be that delightful and auspicious hour, the beautiful culmination of piety, virtue and joy and the highest reward of human birth,--"

Doha - 52

--"And for which all men and women long as anxiously as thirsty pair of Cataka birds for an autumnal shower during the brief period when the sun is in the same longitude as the constellation named Svati (the Arcturus)?


"I adjure you, my darling, to bathe quickly and take some sweet dish of your choice. See your father after that, my boy; for I protest it is already too late." Even on hearing these most agreeable words of His mother, which were blossoms as it were of the celestial tree of affection, laden with the honey of joy and fountains of worldly prosperity, the bee of Sri Rama's mind could not be lured by their charm. A champion of righteousness that He was, He clearly descerned the path of duty and spoke to His mother in exceedingly plite terms. "Father has bestowed on me the kingdom of the forest, where there will be great opportunities for me in every way. Therefore, grant me leave with a cheerful heart, so that my journey to the forest may be attended with joy and blessing. Be not obsessed with erroneous fears due to affection, dear mother; by your goodwill I shall be ever happy."

Doha - 53

"Spending four years and ten in the forest and having obeyed my father's commands I will come back and behold your feet again; be not sad at heart."


The gentle and sweet words of Sri Rama (the Chief of the Raghus) pierced the mother's heart and rankled there. Alarmed to hear His serene speech she turned pale in the same way as the Yavasaka plant is blasted by a shower in the monsoon. The agony of her heart was beyond description like that of a doe that has heard a lion's roar. Her eyes were wet with tears and her body violently shook like a fish that had got inebriated by sucking the scum raised by the first monsoon shower. Recovering herself and looking her son in the face the mother spoke in faltering accents, "My boy, you are dear as life to your father, to whom it is a constant delight to watch your doings from day to day. He had got an auspicious day fixed for installing you as the prince-regent; for what offence has he asked you to proceed to the woods? Let me know the reason, my darling; who is it that has served as fire to consume the solar race?"

Doha - 54

Reading in Sri Rama's eyes His tacit consent Sumantra's son (won had obviously accompanied the Prince) explained the reason. The mother was struck dumb as it were hear the episode; the state of her mind could not be described in words.


She could neither detain her Son nor yet say `Go; she felt terriable agony in her heart in either event. "It seemed as though one was going to write `moon' and wrote `Rahu' (the demon who is believed by the Hindus to devour the moon during a lunar eclipse) instead through a slip of the pen," she said to herself. "The ways of the Crator (Brahma) are always adverse to all, "she concluded. Kausalya's judgment was swayed on the one hand by her sense of duty and on the other by her affection. She found herself on the horns of a dilemma like a snake that has caught hold of a musk-rat "If press my son and detain him, the moral code will be violated and bad blood created between brothers. And if I allow him to proceed to the woods, it will be a grievou loss" The queen thus found herself faced with an embarrassing situation and was overwhelmed with grief Again, realizing the duty of a woman and remembering that both Rama and Bharata were equally her sons the prudent Kausalya (Sri Rama's mother) who had a guileless disposition, spoke as folllows with great courage, "You have done well, my child, I swear; a father's command is the most sacred of all obligations. "

Doha - 55

"The having promised to bestow on you the kingdom of Ayodhya your father has now decided to exile you to the woods does not make me the least sorry. But your absence from our midst will mean a terrible ordeal to Bhrata, to the king himself and to the people."


"In any case if it be your father's command alone, my boy, then go not, remembering that a mother ranks higher than one's father. If, on the other hand, both father and mother have asked you to proceed to the woods then of course, the forest will equal a hundred cities like Ayodhya, with the sylvan gods for your father, the sylvan goddesses for your mother and the birds beasts to wait upon your lotus feet. At all events it is but proper for a king to dwell in a forest in the evening of his life; it is your tender age which fills my heart with agony. How blessed is the forest and how luckless Ayodhya, that will be deserted by you, O crown of Raghu's line! It I ask you, my boy, to take me with you your mind will be filled with doubt. You are supremely dear to all, my child; you are the life of our life, the vitality of our soul. As such you say, "Mother, I go to the forest !" while I remain rooted my seat even on hearing these words and repent.

Doha - 56

"Realizing this I do not press my suit exaggerating my false love. I only pray that remembering me as a mother you should not allow me to slip out of your mind."


"May all the gods and manes protect you, O lord of the earth. as the eyelids protect the eyes. The term of exile is like water, while your near and dear ones resemble the fish that live on it; as for yourself you are a fountain of mercy and a champion of virtu. Remembering this please devise some means to see that you come back in time to find them all alive. I adjure you to proceed to the woods in good cheer abandoning your servats, family and the whole city. The fruit of everyone's meritorious deeds is exhausted today and the tide of fortune has turned against us, assuming a sullen aspect. "Thus wailing in many ways mother Kausalya clung to Sri Rama's feet accounting herself the most unlucky woman. Her heart was filled with terrible and deep agony and the profusion of wailings was beyond all description. Sri Rama lifted His mother and pressed her to His bosom. and then comforted her with soothing words.

Doha - 57

That very moment Sita heard the news and rose in great agitation. She approached Her mother-in-law, reverenced her lotus fect and sat down bowing Her head.


The mother-in-law blessed Her in gentle accents and felt distressed when she regarded Her most delicate frame. With Her head bent low Sita who was beauty personified and cherished unallowyed love towards Her Lord, sat reflecting, "The lord of my life would depart to the forest; it has yet to be seen who will have the good fortune to accompany Him --my body and soul together or my soul alone. What God intends to do cannot be foreseen even partly. "As She scratched the ground with the lovely nails of Her toes, Her anklets produced a musical sound, as if--so declare the poets--they lovingly prayed that Sita's feet may never abandon them. Seeing Her shed tears from Her charming eyes, Sri Rama's mother broke the silence: "Listen, my dear child: Sita is exceedingly delicate and the per of her father-in-law and mothers-in-law and the whole family."

Doha - 58

"She has for her father Janaka, the jewel among princes, while her father-in-law is no other than the sun of the solar race (your father); as for her lord (yourself), he is a veritable moon for the lily-like progeny of the sun-god and a repository of goodness and beauty."


"Again I have found in her a beloved daughter-in-law who is amiable and accomplished, and beauty personified. I have treated her as the very apple of my eye and loved her ever more; nay, my very life is centred in Janaki. I have fostered her in many ways as a celestial creeper and nourished her by feeding her with the water of affection. Just when the creeper was about to blossom and bear fruit God turned against me and there is no knowing what will be the consequence. Borne invariably on bedstead, seat, swing or my own lap Sita has never set her foot on hard ground. I have been tending her like a life-giving herb and never ask her even to stir the wick of a lamp. The same Sita would accompany you to the woods, and awaits your orders, O Lord of the Raghus ! How can a female cakora bird, who loves to feed on the nectar borne on the rays of the moon, bear to fix her gaze on the sun?"

Doha - 59

"Hosts of wild elephants, lions, demons and other fell creatures roam about in the woods. Can a beautiful life-giving herb fit in with a poison-wood my boy?"


"For residing in the forest God has created Kola and Kirata girls who are foreign to sensuous pleasures. Adamantine by nature like the insect living on stone, they never experience any hardship in the woods. Another class fit for the forest is the hermit woman, who has renounced all pleasures for the sake of penance. But how, my son, will Sita live in the forest;--she who is frightened to see even the picture of a mokey? Is female cygnet, who disports in the lovely lotus-beds of the Manasa lake, fit for a muddy puddle? First ponder this; then as you order I will instruct Janaka's daughtrer. "If she stays at home, " the mother continued, "that will mean a great solace to me. " When Sri Rama (the Hero of Raghu's race) heard this endearing speech of His mother. imbued as it were with the nectar of grace and affection--

Doha - 60

He comforted her by addressing tender and wise words to her; and then He started admonishing Janaki by disclosing to Her the advantages and disadvantages of forest life.


Even though He hesitated in speaking to Her in the presence of His mother, He realized within Himself the emergency of the situation and said, "Listen to my advice, O princess, and do not misunderstand me. If you wich well of me as well as of yourself, please accept my suggestion and stay at home. You will be obeying my orderandrendering service to your mother-in-law; by remaining home, O good lady, you will be benefited in every way. For a woman there is no other duty more sacred than reverently adoring the feet of her husband's parents. Whenever my mother thinks of me and feeling disconsolate due to her love for me loses her balance of thinks of me and feeling disconsolate due to her love for me loses her balance of mind, do you console her, my love, with soothing words by narrating old legends to her. I tell you sincerely and solemnly; it is for my mother's sake, O charming lady, that I leave you here."


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Last Updated : February 17, 2011

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