Puranic encyclopaedia

by Vettam Mani | 1975 | 609,556 words | ISBN-10: 0842608222

This page describes the Story of Vibhishana included the Puranic encyclopaedia by Vettam Mani that was translated into English in 1975. The Puranas have for centuries profoundly influenced Indian life and Culture and are defined by their characteristic features (panca-lakshana, literally, ‘the five characteristics of a Purana’).

Story of Vibhīṣaṇa

Brother of Rāvaṇa. The son Viśravas was born to Prajāpati Pulastya. Rāvaṇa, Kumbhakarṇa and Vibhīṣaṇa were born to Viśravas by his wife Mālinī. A daughter named Śūrpaṇakhā also was born to them. Kumbhakarṇa and Vibhīṣaṇa went to do penance under the leadership of their eldest brother Rāvaṇa. They did severe penance and obtained various boons. The boon given to Vibhīṣaṇa was to live as a righteous man. After that they came back and defeated Kubera, the ruler of Laṅkā and brought Laṅkā under their control. Rāvaṇa became the ruler of Laṅkā. Kumbhakarṇa and Vibhīṣaṇa lived with their brother in Laṅkā. Rāvaṇa married Mandodarī. Kumbhakarṇa took Vajrajvālā the daughter of Mahābali and Vibhīṣaṇa took Saralā, the daughter of Śailūṣa a Gandharva as their wives, according to Uttara Rāmāyaṇa. Rāvaṇa conquered the three worlds and was ruling as the emperor of the whole world, when Śrī Rāma and Lakṣmaṇa went to the forest, with Sītā. Rāvaṇa carried Sītā away to Laṅkā. Rāma and Lakṣmaṇa, with the help of the monkey-army entered Laṅkā. At this time Rāvaṇa called together his ministers to consider the details about the battle with Śrī Rāma. Every one present except Vibhīṣaṇa voted for the battle. Vibhīṣaṇa advised Rāvaṇa to return Śītā, the stolen property and beg Śrī Rāma for pardon. Rāvaṇa got angry and expelled Vibhīṣaṇa from Laṅkā. Vibhīṣaṇa joined the side of Śrī Rāma and informed him of all the military secrets of Rāvaṇa. In the battle which ensued Rāvaṇa was killed and Vibhīṣaṇa was made the king of Laṅkā by Śrī Rāma. It is stated in Kambarāmāyaṇa, Yuddha Kāṇḍa that according to the instruction of Śrī Rāma and at the instance of Indra, Viśvakarmā came to Laṅkā and renovated the city of Laṅkā.

Śrī Rāma returned to Ayodhyā and became the king. One day Candragupta, the second son of Sahasramukha Rāvaṇa (Rāvaṇa with thousand heads) stole away the daughter of Sugrīva and the daughter-in-law of Vibhīṣaṇa. Vibhīṣaṇa informed Śrī Rāma of this. Śrī Rāma, with Lakṣmaṇa, Vibhīṣaṇa, Sugrīva, Hanūmān and the monkey-army went to the city of Sahasramukha Rāvaṇa in the middle of Milk-sea. A fierce battle ensued which lasted for three days. All the Rākṣaṣas were killed. (See under Sahasramukharāvaṇa).

It is mentioned in Kamba Rāmāyaṇa that in the horse sacrifice performed by Śrī Rāma, the control of the army was in the hands of Sugrīva and financial control was vested in the hands of Vibhīṣaṇa.

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