The Ramayana

by Manmatha Nath Dutt | 1891 | ISBN-13: 9788171101566

This page describes Chapter LIV of the English translation of the Ramayana, one of the largest Sanskrit epics of ancient India revolving around the characters Rama, Sita and Ravana. It was orignally authored by Valmiki at least over 2500 years ago. This is the first book of the Bāla-kāṇḍa (Bala-kanda) of the Ramayana, which consists of 24,000 Sanskrit metrical verses divided oer seven books.

When the ascetic Vasiṣṭha would not part with the cow of plenty then Viśvāmitra, O Rāma, forced Śabala away.

And, O Rāma, carried away by that high-souled king, Śabala, stricken with grief and afflicted with sorrow, bethought herself, weeping.

Have I been forsaken by the high-souled Vasiṣṭha that the royal retainers carry me off thus aggrieved?

What wrong have I done to that mighty ascetic of concentrated spirit, that, knowing me to be faultless, that righteous one leave her that was devoted to his service?’

Revolving this in her mind and sighing again and again she darted to where the pre-eminently energetic Vasiṣṭha was; and cutting off those servants (of the king),

She with the speed of the wind, appeared at the feet of that high-souled one. And weeping, she spoke in distressful accents.

Brahma’s son, wherefore have I been forsaken by you, that the servants of the king were carrying me from off your presence?

Thus addressed the Brahmarṣi said these words to that one aggrieved, and of heart afflicted with sorrow, and like to a sister.

O Śabala, not that I forsake you; nor hast you done me any wrong. But this mighty king proud of his prowess has been carrying you away.

Surely, my strength is not equal to his. More specially, he is a king, a powerful king, more particularly, this day he should not be slain by me (inasmuch as he is my guest): he is a Kṣ atriya and lord of earth.

And he is foremost in might by virtue of possessing this entire Akṣohiṇī abounding in elephants and horses and cars and standards.’

Thus addressed by Vasiṣṭha, that one cognizant of words humbly said in reply to that Brahmarṣi of incomparable power.

The might of the Kṣatriyas is not great, the Brāhmaṇas are more mighty than they. O Brāhmaṇa, super-human is the power of the Brāhmaṇas, excelling that of the Kṣatriyas.

Your power is immeasurable; and the exceedingly energetic Viśvāmitra is not more powerful than thyself. Your energy is unequalled.

O highly energetic one, do you command me bursting with Brahmā forces: the pride, power and endeavours of that wicked one will I bring down.

Thus accosted by her, the highly famous Vasiṣṭha, O Rāma, said, ‘Create you forces capable of crushing the forces of the enemy?

Hearing those words of his, Surabhi created (an army). And, O king, Pahlavas by hundreds brought into being by her lowing, begin even in Viśvāmitra’s sight to commit havoc upon his forces. Thereat, exceedingly angered, with eyes expanded in ire, that king commenced to slay the Pahlavas with various weapons. And beholding the Pahlavas by hundreds afflicted by Viśvāmitra, she again created grim-visaged Śakas mixed with Yavanas. And the field became thronged with the Śakas mixed with Yavanas, of dazzling splendour, exceedingly fierce, resembling golden filaments, bearing sharp scimitars and adzes, and clad in yellow apparel. And that entire host (of Viśvāmitra) was being consumed by them like to flaming fires. Then the exceedingly powerful Viśvāmitra hurled weapons at them; and with these the Yavanas, Kambojas and Barbaras (Barbarians) became sore afflicted.’

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