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Chapter 56: Arrival at Citrakuta
Arrival at Citrakuta
Seetha, Rama and Lakshmana reach the mountain of Chitrakuta, beholding and showing one another the grandeur of the woods there. They visit the hermitage of sage Valmiki. Lakshmana builds a leaf-hut upon instructions from Rama. All of them enter the hut, after performing purification ceremony.
Chapter [Sarga] 56 in Detail
atha raatryaam vyatiitaayaam avasuptam anantaram |
prabodhayaam aasa shanaih laksmanam raghu nandanah || 2-56-1
Then, Rama gently woke up Lakshmana, who was sleeping without break, even when the night was passing away.
saumitre shrinu vanyaanaam valgu vyaaharataam svanam |
sampratisthaamahe kaalah prasthaanasya param tapa || 2-56-2
“Oh, Lakshmana! Hear the sound of wild animals, resounding beautifully. It is time for our journey. Let us start.”
sa suptah samaye bhraatraa laksmanah pratibodhitah |
jahau nidraam ca tandriim ca prasaktam ca pathi shramam || 2-56-3
That Lakshmana who was sleeping, being woken up by his brother at the right moment, had relinquished sleep, sloth and strain which resulted on the way.
tatautthaaya te sarve spristvaa nadyaah shivam jalam |
panthaanam risinaa uddistam citra kuutasya tam yayuh || 2-56-4
Thereafter, all of them raised up touched the auspicious water (took bath) in the river and proceeded towards the path leading to Chitrakuta mountain, as suggested by the sage Bharadwaja.
tatah samprasthitah kaale raamah saumitrinaa saha |
siitaam kamala patra aksiim idam vacanam abraviit || 2-56-5
Rama who set out along with Lakshmana at that dawn, spoke as follows to Seetha whose eyes looked like lotus leaves.
aadiiptaan iva vaidehi sarvatah puspitaan nagaan |
svaih puspaih kimshukaan pashya maalinah shishira atyaye || 2-56-6
“Oh, Seetha! Behold Kimshuka trees with their diadem of flower blossoming all over, as if they are blazing up, in this winter.”
pashya bhallaatakaan phullaan naraih anupasevitaan |
phala patraih avanataan nuunam shaksyaami jiivitum || 2-56-7
“Look at these Bhallataka (cashew nut) trees, abounding in flowers and bent down with fruits and leaves, all un-plucked by men. We can certainly live here.”
pashya drona pramaanaani lambamaanaani laksmana |
madhuuni madhu kaariibhih sambhritaani nage nage || 2-56-8
“Oh, Lakshmana! Behold in every tree the hanging honey-combs, with sizes of a water-trough, gathered by honey-bees.
esa kroshati natyuuhah tam shikhii pratikuujati |
ramaniiye vana uddeshe puspa samstara samkate || 2-56-9
In this beautiful forest-region, dense with a scattered mass of flowers, a Chataka bird is crying and a peacock is responding to it.”
maatamga yuutha anusritam paksi samgha anunaaditam |
citra kuutam imam pashya pravriddha shikharam girim || 2-56-10
“See this Chitrakuta Mountain with a high and mighty peak, wide-spread with a multitude of elephants and made to resound by a congregation of birds.”
samabhuumitale ramye drumairbahubhiraavrite |
punye ramsyaamahe taata citrakuutasya kaanane || 2-56-11
“Oh, brother! We shall sport in this forest of Chitrakuta, having a level-ground beautifully extensive with many trees and is pure.”
tatah tau paada caarena gacchantau saha siitayaa |
ramyam aasedatuh shailam citra kuutam mano ramam || 2-56-12
Thereafter, Rama and Lakshmana along with Seetha traveling on foot, approached the mountain of Chitrakuta, which was pleasant and lovely.
tam tu parvatam aasaadya naanaa paksi gana aayutam |
bahumuulaphalam ramyam sampannam sarasodakam || 2-56-13
Reaching that mountain, with various flocks of birds, with many roots and fruits, lovely and rich in streaming water, Rama said to Lakshmana as follows:
manojjno.ayam tirih saumya naanaadrumalataayatah |
bahumuulaphalo ramyah svaajiivah pratibhaati me || 2-56-14
“It is appearing to me that this beautiful Chitrakuta Mountain yields an easy sustenance, for, it is charmingly filled with various kinds of trees and creepers with different kinds of roots and fruits.”
manayashcha mahaatmaano vasantya shilochchaye |
ayam vaaso bhavet taavad atra saumya ramemahi || 2-56-15
“Oh, gentle brother! High souled sages are also staying on this mountain. Let this become the dwelling. Let us have a pleasant resort here.”
iti siitaa ca raamashcha lakshmanashcha kritaajnjalih |
abhigamyaashramam sarve vaalmiiki mabhivaadayan || 2-56-16
After deciding thus Seetha, Rama and Lakshmana all with joined palms approached the hermitage and offered salutation to the sage Valmiki.
taanmaharsih pramuditah puujayaamaasa dharmavit |
aasyataamiti covaaca svaagatam tu nivedya ca || 2-56-17
The great sage Valmiki, who knew what is right, full of delight, treated them with honor, offered cordial welcome and requested them to sit.
tatoabraviinmahaabaahurlakamanam lakshmanaagrajah |
samnivedya yathaanyaaya maatmaanamrisye prabhuh || 2-56-18
Then Rama, the lord with mighty arms, in accord with tradition, reported to the ascetic all that concerned them and spoke to Lakshmana as follows:
laksmana aanaya daaruuni dridhaani ca varaani ca |
kurusva aavasatham saumya vaase me abhiratam manah || 2-56-19
Lakshmana, my gentle brother! Bring strong and choicest timber and construct a dwelling. My mind is fascinated in dwelling here.”
tasya tat vacanam shrutvaa saumitrir vividhaan drumaan |
aajahaara tatah cakre parna shaalaam arim dama || 2-56-20
Hearing those words of Rama, Lakshmana brought various kinds of trees. Thereafter, he the annihilator of enemies constructed a leaf-hut.
taam nisthataam baddhakataam dristvaa ramah sudarshanaam |
shushruusamaanam eka agram idam vacanam abraviit || 2-56-21
Seeing that hut, which was firmly built and thatched as well as beautiful to look at, Rama spoke the following words to Lakshmana who listened to his command and who was closely attentive to him:
aineyam maamsam aahritya shaalaam yaksyaamahe vayam |
kartvyam vaastushamanam saumitre cirajiivabhih || 2-56-22
“Oh, Lakshmana! Bring the meat of an antelope. We shall perform a purifactory ceremony while entering the house. Which is to be done by those who wish to live long.”
mrigam hatvaa.a.anaya kshipram lakshmaneha shubhekshana
kartavyah shaastradristo hi vidhirdarmamanusmara || 2-56-23
“Oh, large-eyed Lakshmana! Killing the antelope quickly, bring it here. The prescribed rite according to scriptural point of view indeed is to be performed. Keep in mind the sacred obligation.”
bhraaturvachana maajjnaaya lakshmanah paraviirahaa |
cakaara sa yathoktam ca tam raamah punarabraviit || 2-56-24
Lakshmana the slayer of enemies, understanding his brother’s words, acted as instructed. Rama spoke again to Lakshmana as follows.
ineyam shrapayasvaitachcchaalaam yakshyamahe vayam |
tvarasaumya muhuurto.ayam dhruvashcha divaso.apyayam || 2-56-25
“Oh, gentle brother! Boil this antelope’s meat. We shall worship the leaf-hut. This day and this instant also are of a distinctive character. Be quick.”
sa laksmanah krisna mrigam hatvaa medhyam pataapavaan |
atha ciksepa saumitrih samiddhe jaata vedasi || 2-56-26
Then, Lakshmana the strong man and son of Sumitra, killing a holy back antelope, tossed it in an ignited fire.
tam tu pakvam samaajnaaya nistaptam chinna shonitam |
laksmanah purusa vyaaghram atha raaghavam abraviit || 2-56-27
Feeling certain that it is cooked and heated thoroughly with no blood remaining, Lakshmana spoke to Rama the lion among man as follows:
ayam krisnah samaapta angah shritah krisna mrigo yathaa |
devataa deva samkaasha yajasva kushalo hi asi || 2-56-28
“This black antelope, with its complete limbs, has been cooked completely by me. Oh, Rama resembling God! Worship the concerned deity, as you are skilled in that act.”
raamah snaatvaa tu niyatah gunavaan japya kovidah |
samgrahenaakarotsarvaan mantran satraavasaanikaan || 2-56-29
Rama, the virtuous man and the learned man in chanting of sacred spells, after taking bath and with subdued mind, briefly chanted all the sacred scripts to be chanted at the end of a purificatory [purification] ceremony.
istvaa devaganaan sarvaan viveshaavasatham shucih |
babhuuva ca manohlaado raamasyaamitatejasah || 2-56-30
Worshipping all classes of deities and getting himself purified, Rama entered the house. There was a heartfelt joy in Rama, with his limitless splendor.
vaishvadevabalim kritvaa raudram vaisnavameva ca |
vaastusamshamaniiyaani magalaani pravartayan || 2-56-31
japam ca nyaayatah kritvaa snaatvaa nadyaam yathaavidhi |
paapa samshamanam raamah cakaara balim uttamam || 2-56-32
Having taken bath in the river as prescribed Rama offered oblations to Lord Rudra and Lord Vishnu after offering tributes to Vaisvadeva. He performed benedictions relating to the purification of house and also a silent prayer as per prescribed rites. He finally offered excellent tributes to the deities, for removing sins.
vedisthalavidhaanaani caityaanyaayatanaani ca |
aashramasyaanuruupaani sthaapayaamaasa raaghavah || 2-56-33
Lakshmana erected altars in all the quarters of the hermitage as was fitting, Chaityas (places for worship of Lord Ganesha and others) and Ayatanas (places for worship of Vishnu and others)
vanyairmaalyaih phalairmuulaih pakvairmaamsairyathaavidhi |
adbharjapaishcha vedoktai rdharbhaishca sasamitkushaih || 2-56-34
tau tarpayitvaa bhuutaani raaghavau saha siitayaa |
tadaa vivishatuh shaalaam sushubhaam shubhalakshanau || 2-56-35
Rama and Lakshmana along with Seetha, having auspicious characteristics, satisfied the spirits by crowns of flowers obtained in the forest, by fruits roots and cooked meat, by water, by prayers as uttered in the sacred texts (Vedas), by sacred grass, by fuel and Kusa grass and then entered the auspicious leaf-hut.
taam vriksa parnac chadanaam manojnaam |
yathaa pradesham sukritaam nivaataam |
vaasaaya sarve vivishuh sametaah |
sabhaam yathaa deva ganaah sudharmaam || 2-56-36
All of them (Seetha, Rama and Lakshmana) together for residential purpose, entered that hut, thatched with leaves of trees, looking beautiful, well-constructed at a suitable site and protected from winds, as if entering an assembly-hall called Sudharma (in heaven) by a group of celestials.
aneka naanaa mriga paksi samkule |
vicitra puspa stabalaih drumaih yute |
vana uttame vyaala mriga anunaadite |
tathaa vijahruh susukham jita indriyaah || 2-56-37
Seetha, Rama and Lakshmana who subdued their senses, very happily strolled in that excellent forest, filled with many classes and multitude of beasts and birds, trees having multi-colored crowns of flowers, and resonating with sounds of elephants in rut and of antelopes.
suramyam aasaadya tu citra kuutam |
nadiim ca taam maalyavatiim sutiirthaam |
nananda hristah mriga paksi justaam |
jahau ca duhkham pura vipravaasaat || 2-56-38
Delighted and joyful to reach the lovely Chitrakuta Mountain and the river Malyavati, provided with good descents and frequented by birds and beasts, Seetha, Rama and Lakshmana shed the agony caused by their exile from the City of Ayodhya.
ityaarse shriimadraamaayane aadikaavye ayodhyaakaande satpajncaashah sargah
Thus completes 56th Chapter of Ayodhya Kanda of the glorious Ramayana of Valmiki, the work of a sage and the oldest epic.
K. M. K. Murthy. (1999). Ayodhya Kanda - Book Of Ayodhya.
Merriam-Webster. (2007). At http://www.m-w.com.
Reference.com. (2007). At http://www.reference.com.
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