Rāmāyana | Sundara Kaṇḍa | Chapter 3

Chapter: 3 Hanuman's Victory over Goddess

[Stopping of Hanuman by Goddess of Lanka and his victory over her.]

Hanuman the monkey chief, who is the son of Wind God, who is remarkably intelligent and strong and who was on the Lamba Mountain, which was as big as a cloud, prepared with courage to enter the city of Lanka which had pretty gardens and lakes and which was also protected by Rāvaṇa. 1-2

Hanuman saw the city, which was shining like the clouds of autumn, which had the booming sound of ocean, where sea breeze wafts continuously, which was similar to Alaka puri the capital of Kubera, * which was full of enthusiastic army, which had very regal and pretty tower gates, which had a white decorated gate way, which was protected like Bhogavatī the city of serpents, which was great, which was having clouds like the streak of lightning, which reached up to the path of stars, which was similar to Amarāvatī the city of Devendra, which had cool breeze, which was surrounded by big golden walls, which had the jingling sound of bells and which was decorated by flags, again and again and with thoughtful surprise neared it and with happiness and force jumped and climbed its walls. 3-8 * Lord of Wealth.

Hanuman saw with pleasure the city of Śrī Lanka, which had Gates made of gold, which had floors on which precious gems were embedded, which had majestic towers that appeared to fly and were made of gold in which diamonds, crystals, pearls and other precious gems were embedded, which had courtyards and houses made of molten gold and decorated by silver and thus appearing white, which had steps made of precious gems interspersed with powder of crystals through which swans walked hither and thither, which was filled with sounds of Krauṇcha birds (mythical birds) and peacocks, which had many musical instruments which when played were making reverberating sounds and which was like the city of Indra touching the sky. 9-12

That heroic Hanuman seeing the splendorous, rare and richly endowed city of the chief Rākṣasas thought like this. 13

"Protected by the army of Rāvaṇa, which has kept all arms in readiness; this city cannot be conquered by anyone using his strength." 14

"This perhaps can be entered only by the famous Kumuda, Angada, the great monkeys Suṣeṇa, Mainda and Dvividhaḥ. 15

"This could be entered possibly by Sugrīva the son of Sun, Kuśa Parva the monkey, Jambhavan the bear, Ketumāla and myself." 16

"He then remembered about the great valour and masculinity of the great heroes Rāma and Lakṣmaṇa and became pleased." 17

(Though the above monkeys were capable of entering the city, he was not sure that they would be able to conquer it and so the thought of these heroes pleased him.)

Hanuman saw that famous decorated city which had palace like buildings from which darkness was removed, which was complete and which did not have any deficiencies and which looked like a young lady, who wore the glitter of gems as her dress, the pretty stables as ear studs. 18-19

Then the city goddess took her actual form and saw the very strong, monkey chief, who was the son of the wind god, entering the city. 20

(This goddess called Lanka Lakshmi was earlier called Vijaya Lakshmi and was the keeper of the treasury of Lord Brahma. She was once careless and did not do her work properly. Brahma cursed her to become the watch woman of Rāvaṇa. He also told her that on the day she is defeated by a monkey, she will regain her original form.)

That Goddess of Lanka City, who was looked after by Rāvaṇa, saw the monkey chief and appeared with a grotesque face. 21

She stood in front of the valorous son of wind god and with a booming loud voice spoke to the son of wind. 22

"Who are you? Why have you come here? Tell which is the truth, for then only your soul will continue to exist" 23

"This city of Lanka is protected on all the four sides by the invisible soldiers of Rāvaṇa and so definitely you cannot enter it." 24

(This Śloka also indicates that the Goddess of Lanka is immortal and hence would continue protecting it even if the soldiers were defeated.)

Then the valorous Hanuman replied to her who was in front of him, "I would tell the truthful answer to what you have asked." 25

"By the way who are you? Why are you seeing me cruelly? Why are you dangerously bullying me? But also why are you standing near the gate?" 26

That lady of Lanka, who was capable of taking any form she liked, hearing the words of Hanuman, addressed the son of wind God with hatred thus: 27

"I am one who obey the orders of Rāvaṇa, the all-powerful King of Rākṣasas and I cannot be won over by anybody and I protect this city." 28

"Hey monkey, you cannot enter here disregarding me. Now itself, you are going to sleep after losing your soul as I will kill you." 29

"Monkey, I am the city of Lanka and I alone guard it with utmost care and I am telling this to you only." 30

Hearing the words of Śrī Lanka, Hanuman the monkey chief, who was the son of Wind God, became sad and stood like another mountain. 31

He who is an expert and the greatest among those, who can jump facing her, who has taken a feminine form, spoke to her softly like this: 32

"I am going to see this city which has forts, spires and towers. I have come here only for this as I am interested in it." 33

"My coming to this city of Lanka is to enable me to see the gardens, forests, fields and mansions." 34

That Lanka Rākṣasī, who can take any form she likes, even after hearing the words of Hanuman, still spoke to him in a harsh manner. 35

"Hey bad monkey, without winning over me, who am guarding this city, you cannot enter in to it." 36

Then the great monkey facing the Rākṣasī told her, "Lady, I will just see the city and go away". 37

Then the Goddess of Lanka shouted uproariously and with great strength beat the chief of the monkeys. 38

Having been beaten by the Lady of Lanka, that monkey chief, who was a hero and also the son of Wind God, roared in a very high pitch. 39

Then Hanuman forgetting himself because of anger, folding his fingers hit her strongly with his left fist. 40

Because he knew that she was a lady, he did not show his anger too much. 41

That Rākṣasī because of the first punch suddenly fell down on the ground with broken limbs, horrible face and showed her real form. 42

Because of the knowledge that she was a woman, seeing her fall on the ground, Hanuman looked at her with mercy. 43

After this, that Goddess of Lanka, with stuttering voice and devoid of pride, told him the following words. 44

"Hey, great hero, please show mercy on me. Hey, Monkey chief who is soft by nature, please save me. Good people of great strength always are stable in showing justice." 45

(She indicates that the just people who are strong do not kill a woman.)

"Hey, very strong monkey chief, I am myself the Goddess of the city of Lanka and a great hero, and you have defeated me by your prowess." 46

"Hey, Lord of the monkeys, I am telling you truly about the boon given to me by Brahma himself. And so please hear." 47

"The day when a monkey defeats you by his prowess, then you please understand without doubt that bad time has come to the Rākṣasas." 48

"Hey graceful one, by your sight, I understand that the time has come to me. Whatever has been told by Brahma is the truth for no change can come to it." 49

"The final end has come near to the bad soul Rāvaṇa and his Rākṣasas due to Sītā.". 50

"And so monkey chief, enter this city protected by Rāvaṇa and do there whatever you wish to do." 51

"So you who are the Lord of Monkeys, please enter this good town ruled by the Rākṣasa King, which is badly affected by the curses and search for the daughter of Janaka properly." 52

(This clearly indicates that Sītā was present in the city. The curse referred to above is given by the bull Nandi Deva, the vehicle of Lord Shiva, when he was jeered at by Rāvaṇa.)

Thus ends the third chapter of Sundara Kanda in the Rāmāyaṇa which is the first epic written by Vālmīki

Thus ends the sixteenth day story of Rāmāyaṇa sung by Lava and Kuśa in front of Rāma.

Songs sung in fourth to twenty-fourth chapters of Sundara Kanda by Lava and Kuśa in front of Sri Rāma at the place where Aśvamedha sacrifice was being performed on seventeenth day. The total verses sung on that day were 773.