Hanuman Nataka (critical study)

by Nurima Yeasmin | 2015 | 41,386 words

This page relates ‘Mountains in the Hanumannataka’ of the English study on the Hanuman-nataka written by Shri Damodara Mishra in the 11th century. The Hanumannataka is a Mahanataka—a fourteen-act Sanskrit drama dealing with the story of Rama and Hanumat (Hanuman) and presents the events in the lifes of Rama, Sita, Ravana and Hanuman (the son of Anjana and Vayu—the God of the Winds) based on the Ramayana story.

8.2. Mountains in the Hanumannāṭaka

The Hanumannāṭaka records the names of some mountains of India. Some mountains are regarded as places of pilgrimage and some of them are regarded as places for performing penance. Here is an attempt to add a brief discussion on the mountains mentioned in the Hanumannāṭaka.

Kailāsa:

Kailāsa is a mountain and a peak of the great Himālayas. It is the residence of Śiva and Kubera.[1] There is a reference to Kailāsa in the Hanumannāṭaka of Śrī Dāmodara Miśra..[2] It may be added that in the Vikramorvaśīya [vikramorvaśīyam][3] of Kālidāsa, Śiva is mentioned as Kailāsanātha.

Kailāsa lies near the source of some of the longest rivers in Asia: the Indus, the Sutlej, the Brahmaputra and the Karnali (a tributary of the Ganges). It is considered to be the abode of Lord Śiva and a place of eternal bliss. The mountain lies near Lake Manasarowar and Rakshastal in Tibet. The word Kailāsa may be derived from the word Kilāsa which means crystal. According to Hindu belief, Lord Śiva, the destroyer of evil and sorrow, resides at the summit of this legendary mountain named Kailāsa, where he sits in a state of perpetual meditation along with his wife Pārvatī.

According to Charles Allen, one description in the Viṣṇupurāṇa, of the mountain states that its four faces are made of crystal, ruby, gold and lapis lazuli. It is a pillar of the world and is located at the heart of six mountain ranges symbolizing as lotus. The four rivers flowing from Kailāsa then flow to the four quarters of the world and divide the world into four regions.[4]

Vindhyā:

The reference of the mountain Vindhyā is also there in the Hanumannāṭaka.[5] The Vindhyā Range is a range of older rounded mountains and hills in the west-central Indian sub-continent, which geographically separates the Indian sub-continent into northern India (the Indo-Gangetic Plain) and southern India.[6] In the Ancient Geography of India, it is found that the Pulindas, inhabited the Vindhyās and were for a long time the scourge of travellers.[7]

Hindu legends say that the Vindhyā Mountains once showed a tendency to grow as high so to obstruct the usual trajectory of the sun. This was accompanied by increasing vanity on the part of the mountain range, which demanded that Surya should circummbulate the Vindhyās in the same way as he does Mount Meru. The need arose to subdue, by guile, the Vindhyā and Agastya was chosen to do that Agastaya journeyed from North to South, and on the way encountered the impossible Vindhyā mountains. He asked the mountain range to facilitate his passage across to the South. In reverence for Agastya, the Vindhyā Mountains bent low enough to enable the sage and his family to cross over and enter South India. The Vindhyā Range also promised not to increase in height until Agastaya and his family returned to the north. Agastya settled permanently in the south, and the Vindhyā Range, true to its word, never grew further.

Himālaya:

The mountain Himālaya is also mentioned in the Hanumannāṭaka. According to Viṣṇupurāṇa (Viṣṇupurāṇa)[8], the Himālaya is the northern limit of India. It is said in the introductory stanza of the Kumārasaṃbhava (Kumārasambhava)[9]; Kālidāsa distinctly mentions here that the king of the mountains, Himālaya by name is situated to the northern direction. Moreover; the names tuhinādri[10] and himādri[11] are also found employed in the Raghuvaṃśaof Kālidāsa to mean the Himālaya.

According to the Kup[12], the Himavat is the abode of Siddhas and Cāraṇas. It spreads over one thousand and eighty Yojanas. After that this Purāṇa[13] narrates that the ‘Himālaya’ is the source of the rivers like Śatadru, Candrabhāgā, Sarayu, Yamunā, Irāvatī, Vitasta, Vipāśā, Devikā, Kuhū, Gomatī, Dhūtapāpā, Bahudā, Dṛṣadvati, Kauśiki and Lohita. Again it is the source of the mighty Gaṅgā also. Because of this, the river Gaṅgā is often called the daughter of the Himālaya (Himālayasutā).

Citrakūṭa:

There is a reference in the Hanumannāṭaka[14], to a hill named Citrakūṭa. According to Ancient Geography of India (Ancient Geography of India), Rāma crossed the Yamunā on a raft and arrived at the foot of the hill Citrakūṭa by the river Mandākīni or Mālini at a distance of twenty four miles from the confluence of the Yamunā and the Gaṅgā.[15] Citrakūṭa, is situated on the clear river Paisunoi, which is therefore the Mandākīni or

Mālini of old days. Bharata decided that he would travel to Citrakūṭa and bring back Rāma with him to Ayodhyā.[16]

Ṛṣyamūka:

Ṛṣyamūka is a mountain near the lake Paṃpā which formed the temporary abode of Rāma with the monkey-chief Sugrīva. This Ṛṣyamūka is also mentioned in the Hanumannāṭaka by Śrī Dāmodara Miśra.[17] It is mentioned as giri.

Kiṣkindhā:

Kiṣkindhā is also mentioned in the Hanumannāṭaka[18] It is a mountain situated in the country called Kiṣkindhā. It is also a city, the capital of Kiṣkindhā.[19]

Krauñca:

Krauñca is the name of a mountain. It is also mentioned in the Hanumannāṭaka[20] This mountain is said to be the grandson of Himālaya and said to have been pierced by Kārtikeya and Paraśurāma.[21] It is mentioned in the Meghadūta[22] also.

Suvela:

Suvela is the name of the Trikūṭa mountain.[23] It is also mentioned in the Hanumannāṭaka193

Mandara:

Mandara is mentioned in the Hanumannāṭaka by Śrī Dāmodara Miśra.[24] Mandara is a mountain used by the gods and demons as a churning stick when they churned the ocean for nectar.[25]

Revā:

The Revā or ‘roaring’[26] is also known as Narmadā and also by Indujā, Somodbhavā, and similar names meaning ‘Moonborn’, as Purvagangā or Eastern Ganges, by Mekalakanyakā, Mekalādrijā and similar names meaning “flowing from mountain Mekala”.[27] The last evidently refers to mount Amarakaṇṭaka the source of the river.[28] Its valley was the seat of two important kingdoms viz. of the Cedis and the Haihayas. The first were also called Dāhalas and Traipuras from their chief town Tripurī or Tripura.[29] It is clear from the Bālarāmāyaṇa that the Cedis occupied the banks of the Narmadā, as it calls its chief “master of the province adorned by the Narmadā” and “ruler of Mekala”. Coming from Siṃhala to Ayodhyā, one of Rāma’s companions is made to point out Lāṭa Deśa to the left of the Narmadā.[30] The river Revā is also mentioned in the Hanumannāṭaka[31]

Footnotes and references:

[1]:

V.S. Apte’s The Students Sanskrit English Dictionary, p. 164

[2]:

janma brahmakule harārcanavidhou kṛtvā śiraḥkṛntanaṃ śaktirvarjiṇi ghoradaṇḍadalanavyāpāraśaktaṃ manaḥ/
helollāsitakelikandukanibhaḥ kailāsa utpāṭita statkiṃ rāvaṇa! lajjase na harase cauryeṇa patnīṃ raghoḥ// Hanumannāṭaka, IV.8

[3]:

kailāsanāthamupasṛtya nivartamānā/ Vikramorvaśīyam, 1.2

[4]:

en. wikipedia. org

[5]:

padakamalarajobhirmuktapāṣāṇadehā malabhata yadahalyāṃ gautamo dharmapatnim/
tvayi carati viśīrṇagrāvavindhyādripāde kati kati bhavitārastāpasā dāravantaḥ// Hanumannāṭaka, III.19

[6]:

en.wikipedia. org

[7]:

Ancient Geography of India, p. 49

[8]:

uttaraṃ yat samudrasya himādreścaiva dakṣiṇam/
varṣaṃ tat bhāratam nāma bhārati yatra santatiḥ// Viṣṇupurāṇa, II.131

[9]:

astyuttarasyāṃ diśidevatātmā himālayo nāma nagādhirājaḥ/ Kumārasambhava, 1.1

[10]:

… jvalitena guhāgataṃ tamastuhinādreriva naktamoṣadhiḥ/ Raghuvaṃśa VIII. 54

[11]:

paraspareṇa vijñātasteṣūpayanapaṇi ṣu rājñā himavataḥ sāro rājñaḥ sāro himādriṇā ibid.,VIII, 57

[12]:

parvato himavānnāma nānādhātuvibhuṣiṭaḥ/
yojanānāṃ sahasrāni so’sitistvayato giriḥ//
siddhacāraṇasaṅkirṇo devarṣigaṇa sevitaḥ/ Kup. II. 36.43

[13]:

sravante pāvanā nadyaḥ parvatibhyo viniḥ ṣrtāh
śatadruścandrabhāga ca sarayuryamunā tathā
irāvatī vitasta ca vipāśā devikā kuhuḥ
gomati dhūtapāpā ca bāhudā ca dṛṣadvati
kauśiki lohita caiva himavat pādaniḥṣrtāḥ ibid., I. 45, 26-28

[14]:

(tatra citrakūṭe) (sakaruṇaṃ)
mūrdhnā badduhajaṭena valkalabhṛtā dehena pādānatiṃ kurvāṇe bharate tāthā praruditaṃ tārasvaraiḥ sītayā/
yenodvignavihaṅganirgatataruniḥ saṃmadaḥ śvāpadaḥ śailendro’pi kilaiṣa bhūribhirbhūtsāśruḥ payaḥ prasravaiḥ// Hanumannāṭaka, III.18

[15]:

itastriyojanā drāmagiriryatra nivatsyati maharṣisevitaḥ
puṇyah sarvasya sukhadḥ śivaḥ galāṅgulābhinādito
vārṇararkṣaniṣevitaḥ citrakuṭaḥ itikhyāto gandhamā-danasannibhah/ Ayodhyākānda 54, 29-30 and Ancient Geography of India, p.12

[16]:

www.bvihar.com.

[17]:

hanumān sānunayam—
śṛīrāma kṣoṇipāla tyaja nijadayitāśokamekaḥ salokaṃ laṅkeśaṃ jetumīśe tamapi kapipaterājñayāhaṃ hanūmān/
sugrīvasyātha sārdhaṃ girimavataraṇam pādavinyāsalakṣmī nikṣepādutpalākṣa kṣapitaripubalaṃ darśanaṃ tvaṃ ca dehi// Hanumannāṭaka, V. 39

[18]:

kiṣkinddhādrau raudrarūdrāvatāraṃ dṛstvā rāmo māruti vācamūce/
sītā nītā kenacitkvāpi dṛstā hṛṣṭaḥ kaṣṭaṃ saṃharanprāha vīraḥ// ibid., V.33

[19]:

V.S. Apte, The Students Sanskrit English Dictionary, p. 150

[20]:

yena svāṃ vinihatya mātaramapi kṣatrāstramadhvāsavaṃ svādābhijñaparasvadhena vidadhe niḥkṣatriya medinī/
yadbāṇavraṇavartmanā śikhariṇaḥ krauñcasya haṃsacchalā dadyāpyasthikaṇāḥ patanti sa punaḥ kruddho munirbhārgavaḥ// Hanumannāṭaka,I. 42

[21]:

V.S. Apte’s The Students Sanskrit English Dictionary, p. 169

[22]:

prāleyādrerupataṭamatikramya tāṃstānviśeṣā-nhaṃsadvāraṃ bhṛgapatiśayovartmayatkrauñcarandjram/
tenodīcīṃ diśamanusarestiryagāyāmaśobhī syāmaḥ pādo baliniyamanābhyudyatasyeva viṣṇoḥ// Meghadūta,Purva Megha 60

[23]:

V.S. Apte’s, The Students Sanskrit English Dictionary, p. 169 193. rāmaḥ suvelādritaṭe’vatīrṇaḥ samudramullaṅghya vikīrṇa sainyaḥ/
kṛpāmupetyārikulasya dūtaṃ surendranaptāramathādideśa// Hanumannāṭaka, VIII.1

[24]:

devājñāpaya kiṃ karomi sahasā laṅkāmihaivānaye jambūdvīpamito naye kimathavā vārāṃnidhiṃ śoṣaye/
helotpāṭitavindhyamandaragiriḥ svarṇatrinetrācala kṣepaksuṇṇavivartamānasalilaṃ badhnāmi vārāṃnidhim// ibid., VI. 4

[25]:

V.S. Apte, The Students Sanskrit English Dictionary, p. 425

[26]:

cakāra reveva mahāvirāvā” Raghuvaṃśa, XVI. 31

[27]:

(a) revendujā pūrvagaṅgā narmadā mekalādrijā Hemacandra IV.149
(b) revā tu narmadā somodbhavā mekalakanyakā, Amara, I.10.32

[28]:

The position of the mount was well-known to our poets. Rājasekhara calls the river in one place “born of mount Mekala and in another place assigns its source in the Vindyas. Vindhyamahīdharadhāma, Br., X.75

[29]:

“traipurāstu ḍāhalāḥ syuścaidyāste cedayaśca te”, “tripurī cedinagarī” Hemacandra., IV.22 and 41

[30]:

(a) (vāmato darśayan) ayamasau viśvambharāśiraḥśekhara iva lāṭadeśaBālarāmāyaṇa, X. after 77
(b) Its contiguity to Avantī is clear from the Kathasaritsāgara, and Daśakumāra Somadatta Carita. XIX., 103-104

[31]:

so’yaṃ saptasamudramudritamahīpasyārjunasyuddhataṃ chittvā bhairavasaṅgare’tijarathaṃ kaṇṭhaṃ kuṭhāreṇa yaḥ/
revāpūranirodhahetugahanaṃ bāhoḥ sahastraṃ javāt kāṇḍaṃ kāṇḍaṃakhaṇḍayatpitṛvadhāmarṣeṇa varṣīyasā// Hanumannāṭaka, I. 32

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