Rama and Lakshmana proceeding with Vishvamitra sojourn in a hermitage at a place where River Ganga and River Sarayu are confluent. Once god Shiva with his third eye burnt down the physical entity of Manmatha, the Love-god, at this place.
प्रभातायाम् तु शर्वर्याम् विश्वामित्रो महामुनिः |
अभ्यभाषत काकुत्स्थौ शयानौ पर्ण संस्तरे || १-२३-१
abhyabhaaShata kaakutsthau shayaanau parNa saMstare || 1-23-1
At dawn after that night the great saint Vishvamitra spoke to the legatees of Kakutstha, Rama and Lakshmana, those that are sleeping on a grass bed. [1-23-1] .
कौसल्या सुप्रजा राम पूर्वा संध्या प्रवर्तते |
उत्तिष्ठ नर शार्दूल कर्तव्यम् दैवमाह्निकम् || १-२३-२
uttiShTha nara shaarduula kartavyam daivamaahnikam || 1-23-2
“Fortunate is Kausalya to beget you as her son Rama… get up oh, tigerly-man, eastern aurora is emerging, daytime tasks towards gods are to be performed.” [1-23-2]
This is another celebrated verse chanted even today. So far Rama is a dear prince to his parents. But here, no less than Sage Vishvamitra said to have deified Rama in asking him to ‘get up’ from divine trance to undertake the human duties to eliminate evil, like the dawn of the sun eliminating the evil darkness. In other ancient manuscripts the same verse obtains as:
kausalyaa maataruttiShTa puurvaa sandhyaa upaasyataam |
paurva aahNikam vidhim kartum taata kaalo’yam aagataH ||
This early morning ‘awakening’ of Vishnu or his incarnates from divine trance is a common practice in Vaishnavaite tradition, and is followed even today, called suprabhaata seva , morning service to wake up.
At the rising of the sun as well as at noon certain observances, invocations, and prayers were prescribed which might under no circumstances be omitted. One of these observances was the recitation of the sAvitri, [Gayatri, so to say,] a Vedic hymn to the Sun of wonderful beauty – Gorresio.
For kausalyaa su prajaa raama Griffith says: ‘High fate is hers who calls thee son: / Arise, ’tis break of day /. And Gita Press has it as: Kausalya is blessed with a worthy son [in you.] .
तस्य ऋषेः परम उदारम् वचः श्रुत्वा नृप नरोत्तमौ |
स्नात्वा कृत उदकौ वीरौ जेपतुः परमम् जपम् || १-२३-३
snaatvaa kR^ita udakau viirau jepatuH paramam japam || 1-23-3
On hearing the benign words of the sage those valorous and best ones among men got up, bathed, and on offering water oblation they mediated upon the supreme hymn, namely Gayatri. [1-23-3]
Rama and Lakshmana meditated upon Gayatri hymn as there is no hymn superior to it; na gaayatryaaH param japyam and this is also the usual hymn for water oblation at dawn or dusk: sandhyaa vandana . sandhya is the time between the day and night when the stars or the sun are not visible. aho raatrasya yaH sandhiH suurya nakShatra varjitaH Then this hymn is to be meditated placing her in ones own heart or amid the solar system. gaayatriim sam smaret dhiimaan hR^idi vaa suurya maNDale. .
कृत आह्निकौ महावीर्यौ विश्वामित्रम् तपोधनम् |
अभिवाद्य अति संहृष्टौ गमनाय अभितस्थतुः || १-२३-४
abhivaadya ati saMhR^iShTau gamanaaya abhitasthatuH || 1-23-4
On performing their dawn time duties those two stalwarts, Rama and Lakshmana, enthusiastically presented themselves before the ascetically rich sage Vishvamitra for further journey, duly venerating him. [1-23-4] .
तौ प्रयान्तौ महावीर्यौ दिव्यम् त्रिपथगाम् नदीम् |
ददृशा ते ततः तत्र सरय्वाः संगमे शुभे || १-२३-५
dadR^ishaa te tataH tatra sarayvaaH saMgame shubhe || 1-23-5
Then on travelling some more distance those two great valiant ones, there they have seen the divine river that courses in three ways, namely Ganga, at the auspicious confluence of River Sarayu. [1-23-5]
River Ganga follows three courses, firstly in heavens, second on earth, and third into nether worlds. These episodes on the descent of Ganga to earth are narrated in the later part of this book, Bala Kanda. .
तत्र आश्रम पदम् पुण्यम् ऋषीणाम् भाविअत आत्मानाम् |
बहु वर्ष सहस्राणि तप्यताम् परमम् तपः || १-२३-६
bahu varSha sahasraaNi tapyataam paramam tapaH || 1-23-6
There they have seen the merited hermitage of sages with contemplative souls, and who are practising supreme ascesis for many thousand years. [1-23-6] .
तम् दृष्ट्वा परम प्रीतौ राघवौ पुण्यम् आश्रमम् |
ऊचतुः तम् महात्मानम् विश्वामित्रम् इदम् वचः || १-२३-७
uucatuH tam mahaatmaanam vishvaamitram idam vacaH || 1-23-7
On seeing that merited hermitage Rama and Lakshmana are highly pleased and said this word to that great-soul Sage Vishvamitra. [1-23-7] .
कस्य अयम् आश्रमः पुण्यः को नु अस्मिन् वसते पुमान् |
भगवन् श्रोतुम् इच्छावः परम् कौतूहलम् हि नौ || १-२३-८
bhagavan shrotum icChaavaH param kautuuhalam hi nau || 1-23-8
“Whose hermitage is this merited one? Indeed who is the celebrity that lives therein? Oh, godly sage, we are interested to listen, and we are truly inquisitive about it.” Thus they asked. [1-23-8] .
तयोः तद् वचनम् श्रुत्वा प्रहस्य मुनिपुंगवः |
अब्रवीत् श्रूयताम् राम यस्य अयम् पूर्व आश्रमः || १-२३-९
abraviit shrUyataam raama yasya ayam puurva aashramaH || 1-23-9
On hearing their words the eminent sage Viswamitra said smilingly, ” whose hermitage is this in earlier times that may be listened.” Thus Vishvamitra started to narrate. [1-23-9] .
कन्दर्पो मूर्तिमान् आसीत् काम इति उच्यते बुधैः |
तपस्यंतम् इह स्थाणुम् नियमेन समाहितम् || १-२३-१०
कृत उद्वाहम् तु देवेशम् गच्छन्तम् स मरुद् गणम् |
धर्षयामास दुर्मेधा हुम् कृतः च महात्मना || १-२३-११
tapasyaMtam iha sthaaNum niyamena samaahitam || 1-23-10
kR^ita udvaaham tu devesham gacChantam sa marud gaNam |
dharShayaamaasa dur.hmedhaa hum kR^itaH ca mahaatmanaa || 1-23-11
“When Love-god was with his body wise men used to call him Kama, the passion. At this place, that Love-god with his naughty intent braved god of gods Shiva who had been practising ascesis and who concentrated observantly, and who was returning after his marriage along with his followers, namely the Wind-gods, and that great soul Shiva disapprovingly roared at Love-god. [1-23-10, 11]
The meaning of kan darpa is one who is carnally, prideful, i.e., he who takes pride in arousing lecherousness. And kaama is ‘desire’ the natural basic instinct of any animal, and the one which the sages and saints want to overcome, so they named Love-god from their point of view. In these verses the two words kR^ita udvaaham , and their meaning as on marrying Parvati and going this way with his coterie etc., is held incongruous to other mythological episodes of Shiva’s marriage with Parvati, and Manmatha’s effort to enkindle love in Shiva. After marriage with Parvati, some argue, where is the question of Love-god’s interference to inculcate love in Shiva. It is clear in Rama Charita Maanas how this Shiva-Parvati marriage occurs. And some give the meaning like this: kR^ita where kR^i= karaNe udvaaham tu devesham = to actualise, marriage, only, of Shiva; gacChantam on going there, Love-god, sa marudgaNam with Wind-gods and other deities; dharSayaamaasa started to attack Shiva. The Love-god on going there to that hermitage that is being described by Vishvamitra along with Wind-gods et al, with an intention to get the marriage of Shiva performed, assailed Shiva. .
अवध्यतः च रुद्रेण चक्षुषा रघु नन्दन |
व्यशीर्यन्त शरीरात् स्वात् सर्व गात्राणि दुर्मतेः || १-२३-१२
vyashiiryanta shariiraat svaat sarva gaatraaNi dur.hmateH || 1-23-12
“And Rama, the wrathful third-eye of Shiva destroyed the lewd-minded Love-god making all his limbs to fall down from his body. [1-23-12]
The word avadhyat is otherwise said in other texts as ava dagdhasya rudreNa cakshusaa, to derive a clear meaning of ‘burnt down,’ because avadhyat is just killing, slaying, whereas Shiva’s third-eye truly burns down anything where even ashes do not remain. The critical editions have this as dagdhasya tasya raudreNa chakShuShA .
तत्र गात्रम् हतम् तस्य निर्दग्धस्य महात्मनः |
अशरीरः कृतः कामः क्रोधात् देव ईश्वरेण ह || १-२३-१३
ashariiraH kR^itaH kaamaH krodhaat deva IshvareNa ha || 1-23-13
“There the body of Love-god is evanesced when that great soul Shiva burnt it down, and by the anger of that god of gods Shiva, Love-god is rendered as a bodiless entity. [1-23-13]
Manmatha and his wife Rati will have supremely exquisite physiques. At the very sight of Manmatha everybody used to become a prey to lasciviousness. So Shiva had to completely burn down that physical form of love, whereby only kaama, the mental desire, is remaining. .
अनङ्ग इति विख्यातः तदा प्रभृति राघव |
स च अङ्ग विषयः श्रीमान् यत्र अंगम् स मुमोच ह || १-२३-१४
sa ca a~Nga viShayaH shriimaan yatra aMgam sa mumoca ha || 1-23-14
Then onwards Love-god is renowned as Ananga, as he is without body, and where his body is given up that is renowned as Anga province. [1-23-14] .
तस्य अयम् आश्रमः पुण्यः तस्य इमे मुनयः पुरा |
शिष्या धर्मपरा वीर तेषाम् पापम् न विद्यते || १-२३-१५
shiShyaa dharmaparaa viira teShaam paapam na vidyate || 1-23-15
“This merited hermitage thus belongs to Shiva and, oh, brave Rama, these sages abiding in virtue are Shiva’s disciples at one time, thus sin is unverifiable with them. [1-23-15]
This hermitage belongs to Love God or Shiva, tasya kaamasya sthaaNorvaa. Because Shiva is a god who controls Love-god, kaameswhvara, this is Shiva’s hermitage. The last verse again says it is Kaama’s hermitage. And the sages practising ascesis in this hermitage, puraa shiSyaa , are the old time disciples of Shiva. puurva kaalam aarabhya…santaana paramparayaa shiSyaa. These sages are the progeny of the sages who long time back were the direct disciples of Shiva. Because these are the direct grandchildren of the direct disciples of Shiva, sin cannot touch them. ata eva paapam teShaamna vidyate | puurvam rudra shiShyaa api samprati tat shiShya kR^itam paapam navidyate ityarthaH|| Govindaraja. .
इह अद्य रजनीम् राम वसेम शुभ दर्शन |
पुण्ययोः सरितोः मध्ये श्वः तरिष्यामहे वयम् || १-२३-१६
puNyayoH saritoH madhye shvaH tariShyaamahe vayam || 1-23-16
“Let us stay for this night in this hermitage situated in between two meritorious rivers Ganga and Sarayu, oh, Rama with auspicious mien, tomorrow we will cross over the River Ganga. [1-23-16] .
अभिगच्छामहे सर्वे शुचयः पुण्यम् आश्रमम् |
इह वासः परोऽस्माकम् सुखम् वस्त्यामहे वयम् || १-२३-१७
स्नाताः च कृत जप्याः च हुत हव्या नरोत्तम |
iha vaasaH paro.asmaakam sukham vastyaamahe vayam || 1-23-17
snaataaH cha kR^ita japyaaH ca huta havyaa narottama |
“Let us all purify ourselves by taking our bath, performing our meditations, offering our daily oblations, and then let us enter this meritorious hermitage, thus our stay in here will be comforting to us.” So said Vishvamitra to Rama and Lakshmana. [1-23-17, 18a] .
तेषाम् संवदताम् तत्र तपो दीर्घेण चक्षुषा || १-२३-१८
विज्ञाय परम प्रीता मुनयो हर्षम् आगमन् |
अर्घ्यम् पाद्यम् तथा आतिथ्यम् निवेद्य कुशिकात्मजे || १-२३-१९
vij~naaya parama priitaa munayo harSham aagaman |
arghyam paadyam tathaa aatithyam nivedya kushikaatmaje || 1-23-19
When they are discussing there the sages of that hermitage are highly gladdened to perceive them with their sixth-sense, and on approaching them enchantedly they offered water for hands and feet wash and then offered hospitality firstly to Sage Vishvamitra. [1-23-18, 19] .
राम लक्ष्मणयोः पश्चात् अकुर्वन् अतिथि क्रियाम् |
सत्कारम् सम् अनुप्राप्य कथाभिः अभिरंजयन् ||१-२३-२०
satkaaram sam anupraapya kathaabhiH abhiraMjayan ||1-23-20
Afterwards those sages of that hermitage have accorded reception to Rama and Lakshmana, and applauded by Vishvamitra for their hospitality those sages have entertained Rama and other guests with myths and legends. [1-23-20] .
यथा अर्हम् अजपन् संध्याम् ऋषयः ते समाहिताः |
तत्र वासिभिः आनीता मुनिभिः सुव्रतैः सह || १-२३-२१
न्यवसन् सुसुखम् तत्र काम आश्रम पदे तथा |
tatra vaasibhiH aanItaa munibhiH suvrataiH saha || 1-23-21
nyavasan susukham tatra kaama aashrama pade tathaa |
Those sages with concentrated minds and according to one’s own aptitude have meditated upon the deity of sunset when it is sundown, followed by Rama and others. Then led into hermitage by those sages who are with pious commitments and who are dwelling there, Rama and others have very comfortably stayed in the precincts of Shiva’s hermitage. [1-23-21] .
कथाभिरभिरामभिरभिरमौ नृपात्मजौ | – यद्वा –
कथाभिः अभि रामभिः अभि रमौ नृप आत्मजौ
रमयामास धर्मात्मा कौशिको मुनिपुङ्गवः || १-२३-२२
kathaabhiH abhi raamabhiH abhi ramau nR^ipa aatmajau
ramayaamaasa dharmaatmaa kaushiko munipu~NgavaH || 1-23-22
Staying very comfortably in the precincts of Kaama hermitage, then that virtuous sage Vishvamitra, saint the eminent, delighted the delightful princes with delighting stories…..[1-23-22] .