Rāmāyana | Āraṇya Kaṇḍa | Chapter 42

42. Sītā Sees Golden Deer

[Rāvaṇa and Mārīcha reach the hermitage of Rāma. Mārīcha turns in to an attractive golden deer. After lot of effort Sītā sees him and gets attracted to him.]

After telling these distasteful words to Rāvaṇa, Mārīcha with distress said, "let us go" due to his fear to the lord of the Rākṣasas. 42.1

"If he who carries the bows and arrows sees me once again, that one would raise his weapon and make my life to come to an end." 42.2

"Whoever exhibits his bravery before Rāma would not return back alive. You, who have been hit by the Daṇḍa of Yama, may please know that he is another form of Yama." 42.3

"Oh lad with a bad soul, what can I possibly do for I am going now, and let good come to you, Oh Rākṣasa." 42.4

Due to his words Rāvaṇa became very happy, hugged and embraced him tightly and told the following. 42.5

"Excellent Mārīcha, You are now acting according my wish and that is appropriate. Earlier you were someone else and now you are really Mārīcha." 42.6

"Get in to this flying chariot which is decked with gems and which is drawn by devils with face of donkeys and go along with me." 42.7

"Once you tempt Vaidehī, you can go wherever you want and when no one is there I would make Sītā the princess of Mithilā to accompany me." 42.8

When Rāvaṇa and Mārīcha ascended that chariot which was like an airplane, they departed from that hermitage quickly. 42.9

Then they saw cities, forests, mountains streams, kingdoms which were passing by. 42.10

Mārīcha and the king of Rākṣasas, after reaching Daṇḍakāraṇya, saw the hermitage of Rāma. 42.11

After getting down from the chariot decorated with golden ornaments, Rāvaṇa helped Mārīcha by his hand and told him. 42.12

"This hermitage surrounded by Banana plants is the place for which we have come. And please do the act for which we have come here." 42.13

Hearing the words of Rāvaṇa that Rākṣasa Mārīcha became a deer and started roaming near the entrance of hermitage of Rāma. 42.14

He assumed a form which was wonderful to look at, with antlers decorated by excellent gems and face dappled with white and black spots. 42.15

The mouth of the deer was blue like a blue sapphire, with mouth like red pink lotus petals, ears like blue lotus and it was having a raised neck. 42.16

His white stomach was shining like jasmine flowers and like a moon as well as diamond, the side part of the body which was golden in colour was shining like Madhūka flowers, rest of the body was shining like filaments of lotus flowers and hooves were like Vaidūrya stones and its legs were slim and strong and in good shape. 42.17

Its multi coloured tail was pointing upward shining like rainbow and the animal had a shining complexion with inlaid gems of many kinds. 42.18

Within a moment Mārīcha transformed himself in to a very pretty deer and the forest and also hermitage of Rāma was shining due to his lustre. 42.19

That Rākṣasa assuming a mind bewitching form with a aim of tempting Vaidehī, and had colours of different ores and he freely moved about in grass lands feeding grass. 42.20-42.21

That variegated deer with hundreds of silver spots was lovely to look at and wandered about nibbling young leaves of trees and shoots. 42.22

It went to the Banana groove and moved here and there near the Karṇikāra trees and moved slowly with an aim of stealing the attention of Sītā. 42.23

That great deer, with its back like a red lotus flower, comfortably wandered near the hermitage of Rāma. 42.24

That best deer went from there but again came back and after swiftly going from there it retuned there speedily. 42.25

It played at one place, sat there for some time and with impatience came back and went along with a deer herd. 42.26

That Rākṣasa who has become a deer, followed other deer herds but again came back, with the desire of being seen by Sītā it jumped, sprang and ran round in circles. 42.27

The other animals who were wandering in the forest came near and sniffed this deer ran away in all the ten directions. 42.28

Since he was a Rākṣasa the Mārīcha was interested in killing other animals of the forest and for protecting his intention, he did not kill them to feed. 42.29

At that time, Vaidehī with auspicious looks, who was busy plucking flowers from trees, came near that place. 42.30

The lady with intoxicating eyes went to pluck flowers Karṇikā, Asoka and mango trees, since she who had dazzling eyes wanted to pluck flowers. 42.31

That divine damsel who did not deserve to live in the forest saw the deer which was fully decorated by gems, with pearls inlaid all over the body. 42.32

She with pretty lips and teeth saw that deer of deception, and that wide eyed damsel was wonder struck and stared at that deer with affection. 42.33

That deceptive deer saw the wife of Rāma who was illuminating that forest and wonderfully moved around again. 42.34

Since she had not seen earlier a deer decorated by several gems, that daughter of Janaka experienced very great surprise. 42.35

This is the end of Forty Second Sarga of Āraṇya Kanda which occurs in Holy Rāmāyaṇa composed by Vālmīki as the First Epic.