Trishashti Shalaka Purusha Caritra

by Helen M. Johnson | 1931 | 742,503 words

This page describes Ravana’s marriage which is the second part of chapter II of the English translation of the Jain Ramayana, contained within the “Trishashti Shalaka Purusha Caritra”: a massive Jain narrative relgious text composed by Hemacandra in the 12th century. This Jain Ramayana contains the biographies of Rama, Lakshmana, Ravana, Naminatha, Harishena-cakravartin and Jaya-cakravartin: all included in the list of 63 illustrious beings or worthy persons.

Now, on Mt. Vaitāḍhya in the city Surasaṅgīta, the ornament of the southern row, there was a Vidyādhara-lord, Maya. His wife was named Hemavatī, the abode of virtues, and their daughter, born of her womb, was named Mandodarī. When he had observed that she was grown, King Maya thought over the merits and defects of the princes of the Vidyādharas, seeking a husband for her. As he did not find a suitable husband, King Maya was sunk in gloom until the minister said:

“Master, do not worry at all. There is a suitable husband for her, Daśānana, the powerful and handsome son of Ratnaśravas. There is no one among Vidyādharas who is his equal, like mountains compared with Meru, as he has subdued a thousand vidyās and can not be shaken even by gods.”

“Very well,” said Maya, delighted. After having himself announced by agents, he took Mandodarī and went to Svayamprabha, accompanied by his kinsmen, soldiers, and the women of his household, to give her to Daśamauli. There the elders of the clan, Sumālin and others, noble, consented to receive Mandodarī for Daśāsya. The fathers-in-law,[1] Sumālin and others and Maya and others, had their marriage celebrated on an auspicious day. After the wedding-festivals were over, Maya and others went to their city. Rāvaṇa sported for a long time with his excellent wife.

One day Rāvaṇa went for amusement to the mountain Megharava which has wings, as it were, with layers of Clouds clinging to its sides. He saw six thousand Khecara-maidens bathing in a pool there like Apsarases in the Ocean of Milk. Desiring a husband, they looked at him with affection, their lotus-eyes wide-open, like day-blooming lotuses looking at the sun. Casting aside modesty at once, afflicted by strong love, they themselves asked him, “Be our husband.” Among these was Padmāvatī, daughter of Sarvaśrī and Surasundara, and another, named Aśokalatī, daughter of Manovegā and Budha, and Vidyutprabhā, daughter of Kanaka and Sandhyā, and others belonging to families known throughout the world. All the infatuated girls married the infatuated Daśagrīva with a gandharva-wedding.

Their guards went to their fathers and reported, “Some man is leaving now, after marrying your daughters.” Amarasundara, angered, and Vidyādharas, their fathers, ran impetuously, intending to kill Daśakandhara. Naturally timid, the brides said to Daśagrīva: “Start your car quickly, master. Do not delay. This is a Vidyādhara-lord, Amarasundara, who is invincible, accompanied besides by Kanaka, Budha, and others.”

Astonished at this speech, Daśāsya said to the fair maidens, “Watch the fight between them and me like that between snakes and Garuḍa.” As he was saying this, the Vidyādhara-soldiers came, obscuring him with weapons, like clouds a great mountain. Rāvaṇa, having cruel strength, broke missiles with missiles and not wishing to kill them, bewildered them at once with the missile Prasvāpana.[2] Daśānana bound them like cattle with magic nooses and released them, asked by his wives for their fāthers as a boon. Then they went to their own cities, and Rāvaṇa went with his wives to Svayamprabhapura. A great reception was given by the delighted people.

Footnotes and references:


Vaivāhika is not father-in-law, but a son’s or daughter’s father-in-law, a connection for which there is no word in English Sumālin was not, in fact, the bride’s father-in-law, but grandfather-in-law.


I.e., ‘sending to sleep.’

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