Rāmāyana | Āraṇya Kaṇḍa | Chapter 58

58. Rāma Finds Hermitage Empty

[Rāma and Lakṣmaṇa, who are both greatly worried reach their hermitage but found that Sītā was not to be seen there.]

Seeing the depressed Lakṣmaṇa in that lonely place, by the track which Sītā normally took, the son of Dasaratha asked. 58.1

"Where is that Vaidehī, who followed me when I started to Daṇḍakāraṇya, leaving whom, you have come here?" 58.2

"Where is that Vaidehī of slender waist, who helped me during the period of sorrow due to being banished from the kingdom and running about in Daṇḍakāraṇya?" 58.3

"Oh valorous one, Where is that Sītā who is comparable to the daughters of Gods, who is a companion to my life, without whom I do not have interest to live even for one moment?" 58.4

"Oh Lakṣmaṇa, without that golden coloured daughter of Janaka, I do not have to become the lord of devas or Lord of the earth?" 58.5

"Is the Vaidehī whose life is dearer to me than my soul still alive? Oh gentle one, does my moving about has become an imagination?" 58.6

"Oh son of Sumitrā, when I die for the sake of Sītā and when you go back, would the desire of Kaikeyi would be fulfilled and would she become happy?" 58.7

"Oh gentle one, Would my saint like mother Kausalya, after her son is dead serve Kaikeyi whose son is ruling the country?" 58.8

"Oh Lakṣmaṇa, Only if Vaidehī is alive, I will enter the hermitage and if she who is of good character has been overpowered, I would give up my life." 58.9

"Oh Lakṣmaṇa, if I return back to the hermitage and Sītā does not talk to me with a smile, I would be ruined." 58.10

"Tell me Lakṣmaṇa, whether Sītā was alive or whether she was eaten by a Rākṣasa, when you were not alert?" 58.11

"Sītā is a delicate young lady who has never faced sorrow and clearly due to my separation she would be sorrowing and upset in her mind." 58.12

Definitely when that Rākṣasa who is a bad soul shouted using his tongue "Oh Lakṣmaṇa" in my voice, fear might have been created in you. 58.13

"Vaidehī also hearing those words in a voice similar to mine might have been frightened and asked you to enquire about me." 58.14

"By leaving Sītā alone in the forest, definitely a problem has been created, for a chance has been given to the Rākṣasas to take revenge." 58.15

"Those flesh eating Rākṣasas are sad because of my killing Khara and I have no doubt that Sītā has been killed by those horrible creatures." 58.16

"Ok killer of enemies, now I have become drowned in sorrow for all time and what can I do now that if this is fated to happen this way?" 58.17

Thus worried about that blessed lady Sītā, he reached Janasṭhāna speedily in the company of Lakṣmaṇa. 58.18

Finding fault about his dejected younger brother, feeling hungry as well as thirsty, sighing deeply with a shrunk face and with a dejected colour, he looked at his resting place which was empty. Reaching to their own hermitage and searching for her in places where she usually moved about, those valorous one were worried and their hair stood erect. 58.19-58.20

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