Kiskindha-Kanda - Doha 21 to 30

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

Doha - 21
While a talk was thus going on between them, multitudes of monkeys arrived. Legions of monkeys of various colours were visible in all the quarters.

(Says Sankara:) I saw the army of monkeys, Uma; he is indeed a fool who would try to count them. They came and bowed their head at Sri Rama's feet and found their true lord in Him when they gazed on His countencance. In the whole host there was no monkey whose welfare Sri Rama did not personlly enquire. This was no miracle for my master, the Lord of Raghus, who has taken all forms and is omnipresent. They stood in martial array as ordered and King Sugriva thus instructed them all : "I exhort and commission you to do Sri Rama's work. Therefore, O monkey hosts, go forth in every direction and institute a search for Janaka's Daughter, but you should all return in course of a month, my brethren, He who returns beyond this limit without any news shall meet his death at my hands."

Doha - 22
On hearing his command the monkeys proceeded at once in various directions. Sugriva then called Angada, Nala and Hanuman.

"Listen, O Nila, angada, Hanuman and Jambavan: you are all resolute of mind and wise. Proceed all of you, gallant warriors, together to the south and enquire of everyone you meet the whereabouts of Sita. Use every faculty of yours to devise some mens of tracing Her and thereby accomplish the object of Sri Ramacandra. (For warming oneself) one should waint upon the sun turning one's back towards the same, while fire should be waited upon the sun turning one's back towards the must be served with one's whole being (in thought, word and deed) without resorting to any wiles, Similarly one should strive for(Lasting happiness in) the other world by discarding the unrealities of the world. In this way one's woes incident to birth and death are eradicated. The consummation of human birth, brethren, lies in worshipping Sri Rama in a disinterested spirti. He verily a man of flair and he alone is highly blessed, who is enamoured of Sri Rama's feet" Taking leave of Sugriva and bowing their head at his feet they joysly set out with their thoughts fixed on the Lord of Raghus. The last to make obeisance was Hanuman, (the son on the wing-god). The Lord knew that His work was going to be accomplished by him and therefore called him near. He stroked his head with His lotus hand and recognizing him to be His devotee gave him the ring off His finger. "Comfort Sita in various ways and return quickly after telling Her of my might and the agony of my heart due to separation from Her. " Hanuman felt that he had reped the reward of his birth and departed with the image of the All-meerciful enshrined in his heart. Although the Lord knew everything, the Protector of the gods respected the recognized principles of statecraft (by sending spies in the first instance to trace out His lost spouse).

Doha - 23
All the monkeys set forth ransacking woods, streams, lakes, hills and ravines with their mind wholly devoted to Sri Rama's business and shaking off all attachment to their body.

It at any place they came across some demon they would take his life by a single slap. They looked into every recess of forest and hill; and if they met any hermit they would all surround him. Presently they felt much oppressed with thirst; but water could be found nowhere and they also lost their way in the dense forest. Hanuman thought to himself that without water water to drink all would die. Climbing a hill-top he looked all round and noticing a cavity in the ground saw a strange phenomenon there. Cakravakaas, herons and swans hovered at its mouth and a number of other birds were making their way into it. Coming down the hill Hanuman (the son of the wind-god) took them all and showed them the cavern. They placed Hanuman at their head and entered the cave without further loss of time.

Doha - 24
Going further they saw a lovely garden and a lake with many full-blown lotuses. There stood a beautiful temple close by, where sat a woman who was austerity incarnate.

From a distance all bowed their head to her and in response to her enquiry told her all about themselves. She then said, "Go and drink water and partake of beautiful and luscious fruits of various kinds. " They bathed and took some delicious fruits and all came once more to her. She related to them her own story from the beginning to the end added, "I will now go and see the Lord of Raghus. Close your eyes and you will find yourself outside the cavern. You shall find Sita; you need not feel remorse." The champions closed their eyes and looking again they found themselves standing on the sea-shore. She on her part went to the Lord of Raghus and drawing near to Him bowed her head at His lotus feet. She suppication in diverse ways and the Lord granted to her unceasing Devotion.

Doha - 25
Bowing to the Lord's command she left for the forest of Badrinatha (in the Himalyas), cherishing in her heart Sri Rama's feet, that are adored by the unborn Brahma as well as by Lord Sankara.

On this side (standing on the sea-coast) the monkeys thought to themselves, "The time-limit (fixed by Sugriva) has expired, yet nothing has been done. "Sitting together they all said to one another, "Without obtaining any news (about Sita,) what shall we gain by returning to Kiskindha either?" Said Angada with eyes full of tears, "It is death for us both ways. Here we have failed to get tidings of Sita and if we go home King Sugriva (the lord monkeys) will behead us. He would have finished me immediately my father was killed had not Sri Rama protected me; hence I owe no gratitue to him. " Again and again Angada told them all, "Our death has arrived: there is no doubt about it, "When the monkey chiefs heard angada's words, they could make no answer and tears rolled from their eyes. For a moment they remained plunged in sorrow; but at last they spoke as follow: "So saying all the monkeys went to the sea-shore and spreading Kusa grass there squatted on it. Seeing Angada's distress Jambavan (the old bear chief) gave a highly instructive discourse. "Imagine not Rama to be a mortal. dear child; know Him to be the same as Brahma (the Supreme Spirit) without attributes, invincible and unborn. we, His servants, are all highly blessed in that we are ever devoted to the same Brahma endowed with a qualified form.  

"Of His own free will the Lord descends on earthfor the sake of gods Earth, cows and the Brahmanas. Spurning all the varieties of final beatitude" the worshimppers of His qualified form ( come down and ) remain with Him even on earth."

Thus they discoursed among themselves in many ways. Sampati * ( Jatayu's elder brother ) heard them from his cave in the mountain. When he came out of it and saw a host of monkeys, he said to himself, "God has provided me with a feast : I will devur them all today. I have been starving for many days past and have never had a full meal; today God has supplied me with abundant food all at a time." The monkeys trembled with fear to hear the vulture's words. "Our doom is now sealed, we are sure." they said to themselves. All the monkeys rose when they saw the vulture; while Jambavan felt much perturbed at heart. Angada reflected within himself and said : "There is no one so blessed as Jatayu, who laid down his life in the service of Sri Rama and ascended to the abode of Sri Hari, supremely lucky as he was. "When the bird ( sampati ) heard these words, which stirred in him a mixed feeling of joy and grief, he drew near to the monkeys. who felt alarmed by his presence. Assuring them of safety he went and enquired them about his younger brother and the monkeys told him the whole story. When sampati heard of his brother's obsequies ( performed by the Lord with His own hands ), he glorified the Lord of Raghus in many ways.

"Take me to the sea-shore, so that I may make an offering of water with sesamum seeds ( tomy departed brother ). I can help you only with my instructions, by following which you will succeed in recovering Her whom you seek."

Having performed the after-death ceremonies  in respect of his departed brother ( Jatayu ) on the sea-shore Sampati narrated his own story. " Listen, O monkey chiefs : in the prime of our youth we two brothers ( Jatayu and myself ) soared in the heavens and approached the orb of the sun. Jatayu could not bear the heat of the sun and came back; but I in my pride advanced nearer the sun. My wings were scorched with the inordinate heat and I fell to theground with a fearful scream. A sage, Candrama by name, ( who lived there ) was moved with compassion when he saw me. He taught me spiritual wisdom in many ways and rid me of my identification with the body,'In the Treta age the Supreme spirit will take the from of a human being and the demon king ( Ravana ) will carry off His Spouse. The Lord will send out spies to search Her and you will be absolved of aalsins by meeting them. your ings will sprout again; worry not any longer on that account. you will have to do only this much : show them where Sita may be.' The sage's prediction has come true today; therefore, follow my instructions and set about the business of your Lord. On the the summit of the Trikuta hill stands the city of Lanka; who is fearless by nature, lives there. There, in the Asoka garden, is lodged sita, who sits there, plunged in grief, even now.

"I see Her, though you cannot; for the range fo a vulture's sight is unlimited. I have grown old now.or else I would have rendered some hekp to you.

"He who can leap over the the ocean having a widthof eight hundred miles and is a repository of intelligence will be able to do Sri Rama's business. Look at me and take courage in your heart. See how rejuvenated I feel in body ( with a new pair of wings ) by Sri Rama's grace. Even sinners who invoke Sri Rama's Name are able to cross the vast and boundless ocean of mundane existence. you, therefore, who are His spies,should never lose nerve but be up and doing with the image of Sri Rama enshrined in your heart." So saying, O Garuda ! ( continues Kakabhusundi the vulture departed, leaving them much amazed at heart. Now each one of the monkeys talked of his own strength, but doubted his ability to leap across. Said jambavan ( the king of bears ). "I am now too old and not a particle of my former strength is left in my body. When Sri Rama, the Slayer of the demon khara, assumed the form of Trivikrama ( the Lord with three strides, Lord Vamana ), I was young and possessed great strength.

"In His effort to make Bali captive the Lord grew to an indescribable size. Yet in less than an hour I devoutly ran clockwise around Him as many as seven times."

Said Angada, "I will leap across; but I have some diffidence in my heary about my getting back." Jambavan, however, interposed, "Even though you are competent in every way, how can we send you, the leader of us all ?" The king of bears then turned towards Hanuman : "Listen, O mighty Hamuman : how is it that you are keeping mum ? A son of the wind-god, you are as strong as your father and are a storehouse of intelligence, discretion and spiritual wisdom. What undertaking in this world is too difficult for you to accomplish, dear child ? It is for theservice of Sri Rama that you have come down upon earth." The moment Hanuman heard these words he grew to the size of a mountain, with a body shining as gold and fullof splendour as thought he was another king of mountains (Sumeru ).Roaring again and again like a lion he said, "I can easily spring across the salt ocean and killing Ravana with all his army can uproot the Trikuta hill and bringit here. But I ask you, Jambavan kindly tender me suitable advice." "All that you have to do, my son, is to go and see Sita and come back with Her tidings. Then the lotus-eyed Sri Rama will recover Her by the strength of His arm taking with Him a host of monkeys for mere sport.

"Taking with Him an army of monkeys Sri Rama will exterminate the demons and bring back Sita : and the gods as well as Narada and other sages will utter his praises that sanctify the three spheres. A man who hears, sings, repeats or studies them will attain to the supreme state and Tulasidas. who is devotedlike a bee tothelotus feet of Sri Rama ( the Hero of Raghu's line ), ever sings them.

Sri Rama, the Slayer of the demon Trisira, will grant all the desires of those men and women who listen to Sri Rama's praises, the remedy for the disease of transmigration. Listen tothe praises of Sri Rama, who possesses a form dark as the blue lotus, who by His elegance extinguishes millions of Cupids and whose Name is a veritable fowler  for birds in the shape of sins.


Thus ends the fourth descent into the Manasa lake
of Sri Rama's exploits, that eradicates
all the impurities of the kali age.


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Last Updated : March 06, 2011

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