Srimad Ramayana, Part 2


Sree Rama Panchaitan

Apr 9, CANADA (SUN) — The Travels of Rama by Valmeeki Muni - A 4-part series, translated by Karnamrita dasa.

Volume 1, The Ayodhya Kanda
(The Book of Ayodhya)

By the Mercy of His Divine Grace Om Vishnupada Sri Srimad A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada - Translated by Karnamrita Dasa, 1997


Settling Lord Rama's Inauguration

1) Accepting their salutations, their hands having been joined in the semblance of lotus buds, the king returned the gesture, and spoke the following agreeable words:

2) "Ah! I am supremely happy that you desire my beloved elder son to be installed as heir apparent."

3-4) Having thus replied, the king addressed the brahmanas present, such as Vasishta and Vamadeva, in the hearing of the others, saying, "This is the auspicious month of Chaitra, when the forest groves are decorated with blossom. Please make everything ready for the inauguration of Rama as heir-apparent."

5-12) As the king fell silent a great cry arose from the people. When their cheering had abated, the emperor addressed the mighty sage, Vasishta, as follows: "Kindly consent this day, your holiness, to the performance of the necessary rites and the collection of the requisite paraphernalia for Rama's installation." Being thus requested by King Dasaratha, Vasishta, the best of sages, commanded the sovereign's attendants, who stood before him with folded hands, saying, "Gather the following— gold and jewels for tribute, and various herbs as well. Bring pure, white garlands, honey, and clarified butter. Bring unbeaten cloth, a chariot, and all manner of weapons. Bring an army consisting of horse, cars, foot soldiers and elephants, an elephant with auspicious markings, a pair of wisks, fans, a flag, and a white umbrella. Fetch a hundred gold pots as lustrous as fire, a bull with gilded horns, and a complete tiger-skin. Procure whatever else is required for the ceremony and place it at dawn before the house where the king's sacred fire is maintained.

13) "Let the portals of the emperor's private apartments, and of the entire city, be worshipped with sandalwood paste, with garlands, and with fragrant incense.

14) Let the best quality rice, prepared together with milk and yoghurt, be sanctified and offered to a hundred-thousand brahmanas, to their full satisfaction.

15) Tomorrow morning, prominent brahmanas should be honoured and then donated generous quantities of clarified butter, yoghurt and grains.

16) Tomorrow, at sunrise, the ceremonial invocation of blessings will be performed. Let brahmanas be summoned and seats be prepared for them.

17-18) Let flags be hung, and have the king's road sprinkled with water. Have musicians and dancers gorgeously arrayed, and upon their reaching the second enclosure of the king's palace, have them abide there.

19-21) “Have the worshippable icons of the Lord installed in temples and beneath sacred trees. Let Them be worshipped individually with fried grains and other eatables, with gifts of money and with garlands. Let heroes armed with long swords, sporting leather wristguards and polished armour enter the mighty sovereign's courtyard." Having thus commanded the king's attendants, the two brahmanas [Vasishta and Vamadeva] tarried there, performing whatever rites remained to be done, and informing the king of their progress.

22) These two superlative brahmanas advised the monarch of whatever had been done in great ecstasy. Thereafter, the king instructed Sumantra as follows:

23-27) "Bring the pure souled Rama here without delay!" Sumantra, having replied in the affirmative, conveyed Lord Rama to that place upon an excellent chariot in conformity with the emperor's command. Thereafter, the kings from the east, north, west, and south, as well as the kings of the Mlechchhas, the Aryans, and the forest and mountain folk, began to worship King Dasaratha just as the Devas adore Indra. As he sat in his palace, like Indra in the midst of the Maruts, he observed his son approaching. Lord Rama, who was famed for His valiance, was as beautiful as the king of the Gandharvas.

28) His arms were long, He was the essence of nobility, and His gait was like that of an intoxicated elephant. His countenance was enchanting like the moon, and He was most agreeable to behold.

29) His transcendental beauty, generosity, and manifold spiritual characteristics transported the hearts of men, and He delighted the people like Parjanya [when he sends rain] in the summer season.

30-42) The king could not be satiated by the sight of the approaching Rama. Sumantra helped Raghava alight from an exquisite chariot, and as He proceeded towards His father Sumantra followed with joined palms. Rama ascended the steps to the palace— which resembled the peak of Mount Kailasa; He approached the emperor with folded hands, and offering obeisance at his feet, pronounced His own name. Beholding Him prostrate at his feet, King Dasaratha caught His beloved son by His joined hands, and drawing Him to his bosom, embraced Him. Having raised Him up, the king directed Him to a superlative golden throne inlaid with jewels. Seating Himself upon that excellent chair, Lord Raghava illuminated it with His personal bodily effulgence like the unobscured sun rising over Mount Meru. The assembly hall was lit by His spiritual radiance just as the clear autumnal sky, with its stars and planets, is illumined by the full moon. King Dasaratha was as delighted by the sight of his son as is a man who sees himself adorned with jewels, reflected in a looking-glass. When his son was comfortably seated, Maharaja Dasaratha, the best of those who have sons, addressed Lord Rama as Brahma addresses Kasyapa, saying, "You are born the worthy son of my worthy senior wife. As You are seniormost in point of virtue, You are my beloved, dearmost son. These subjects of mine are devoted to You by reason of Your good qualities, therefore, accept Thou the office of heir apparent tomorrow, when the moon is conjoined with Pushya. The people desire this passionately and have pronounced You to be virtuous. Although You are possessed of such virtues, I shall, out of love, counsel You. "Being always of modest conduct, ever keep Your senses restrained.

43-44) Abandon all evil passions arisen from lust and anger. Governing through the agency of others, as well as by direct decree, gratify You ministers and Your subjects in all respects, and fill the granaries and armouries to the brim.

45) The friends of the sovereign who protects the earth, and who is by nature attached to the performance of sacrifice unto the Supreme Lord, are joyful, like demigods who acquire nectar.

46-48) Therefore, my son, having brought Your senses under control, perform Your duty diligently!" Hearing the emperor's proclamation, Lord Rama's friends hastened to tell the news to Queen Kausalya. And she, the best among women, bestowed gold, cows, and valuable gems upon those who brought the good tidings. Thereafter, having offered obeisance’s to Maharaja Dasaratha, Raghava mounted His chariot, and proceeding to His own majestic residence, was worshipped by crowds along the way.

49) When the citizens [gathered in the royal palace] heard the emperor's decree, they felt as if their cherished wish had been fulfilled, and bidding that lord of men farewell, they returned to their apartments and worshipped the Devas in great happiness.


King Dasarath goes to Rama's Wedding
Punjab, Jammu, c. 1680 from Shangri Ramayana


Further Discussion of Lord Rama's Inauguration

1-2) Upon the departure from the assembly hall of the potentates and the king's subjects, Maharaja Dasaratha, having conferred with his ministers, made a final resolution. He considered thus: "Since the moon is conjoined with Pushya tomorrow, my son Rama, whose eyes are like lotus petals, must be anointed heir-apparent [at that time]".

3) He then entered his private apartments, and commanded his charioteer, Sumantra, saying, "Bring Rama here once more."

4) Assenting to these words, Sumantra proceeded with haste to Rama's residence to fetch the Lord again.

5) Rama was informed by His doorkeepers that His father's charioteer had come once more, and hearing this He became somewhat apprehensive.

6) He had Sumantra brought in immediately, and spoke to him as follows, "Please tell Me exactly why you have returned."

7) Sumantra replied, saying, "The king desires to see You. Having heard this statement, it is for You to decide whether You come or not!"

8) Being thus advised, Lord Rama hastened to the sovereign's palace to see him again.

9) Hearing that Rama had arrived, King Dasaratha had Him enter his apartments, for he wished to tell Him something most agreeable.

10) As the beautiful Raghava proceeded through His father's residence, He descried him from a distance, and fell prostrate before him with joined palms.

11) King Dasaratha raised His son as He lay prone, and embraced Him closely. He then offered Him a seat, and spoke to Him as follows:

12) "O Rama, I am old and have lived a long life, enjoying whatever I may have desired. I have initiated hundreds of sacrifices and have bestown huge fees upon the performers thereof.

13) That son, longed for by me, has now been born and is unequalled on earth. My wish being granted, I have donated all manner of desirable things, O best among men!

14) Not only have I enjoyed an agreeable life, but I have discharged my duties to the demigods, the forefathers, and the brahmanas, as well as to this body [and its senses].

15) "There is nothing more to be done, except for Your inauguration. Therefore, You should do as I bid You.

16) Today the people have expressed their desire to have You as king; thus, my son, I will anoint You heir-apparent.

17) However, I have recently dreamt inauspicious dreams, O Raghava, and thunderbolts and fiery meteors fall from the sky with a terrible roar!

18) Astrologers inform me that my natal stars are afflicted by evil planets, and the sun is conjunct with Mars and Rahu.

19) Generally, the appearance of such omens presages the calamitous and untimely demise of the king.

20) Therefore, as my intelligence is not bewildered, O Raghava, be anointed without delay, for the minds of embodied beings are flickering [and I fear my mind may be changed].

21) "Today the moon traverses the Punarvasu asterism, which precedes Pushya. The astrologers say the moon will be conjoined with Pushya tomorrow.

22) Upon the moon entering Pushya, be Thou anointed— my mind seems to urge me to be quick about it. Tomorrow I shall have You inaugurated as crown-prince.

23) You should therefore observe a fast, together with Your wife, from this moment and throughout the night, and sleep on a couch of kusa grass.

24) Have Your friends guard You vigilantly on all sides; there are many obstacles that can arise in the performance of rites such as this.

25) "Although Bharata is absent from Ayodhya and is dwelling abroad, the time has come for Your anointment— that is my opinion.

26-27) Your brother is habituated to the good conduct of the righteous, He is obedient to His elder brother, He is compassionate, and His sense are subdued; but the minds of men are inconstant, are they not? I believe it to be so. And the righteous, being always devoted to piety, are beautified by their decisiveness, O Raghava."

28) Having listened attentively, and being permitted to depart, Lord Rama, whose inauguration was imminent, saluted His father, and proceeded to His residence.

29) He entered His habitation, having been directed by the king in the matter of His anointment, and at that moment His mother left her private apartments.

30) Lord Rama beheld her in His temple, dressed in fine linen, absorbed in silent prayers before the Deity for His good fortune.

31) Hearing the delightful news of Rama's anointment, Queen Sumitra had already arrived there, and Lakshmana and Sita as well.

32-33) At that moment, Kausalya stood motionless with half-closed eyes, attended upon by Sumitra, Lakshmana and Sita. Having heard that her son was to be crowned heir-apparent upon the moon entering Pushya, she meditated, with suspended breathing, upon the Supreme Lord, Janardana [Vishnu].

34) Approaching His mother, who was absorbed in contemplation, Rama offered her obeisance and spoke the following, bringing her the highest joy.

35) "O mother, I have been entrusted by My father with the protection of the people. Tomorrow, by his command, I shall be anointed heir-apparent.

36) I must perform a night-long fast together with Sita. I was bidden thus by My preceptors; indeed, My father has told Me so.

37) Please have all rites performed today, for Me and for Sita, that will ensure tomorrow's ceremony is auspicious."

38) Hearing that which she had desired so long to hear, Kausalya addressed Lord Rama, her eyes bedimmed with tears of ecstasy, as follows.

39) "O Rama, dear child, may You live a long life! May Your adversaries be vanquished! May you be the delight of my kin, and of Sumitra, when You are invested with regal splendour!

40) You were born from me under the auspices of a beneficent star, my son. For that reason Your father, Dasaratha, is propitiated by Your virtues.

41) The penance I have performed for the pleasure of the lotus-eyed Lord Vishnu has now proven fruitful. Because of this the glory of the House of Ikshvaku will enfold You."

42-43) Being thus addressed by His mother, Rama, smiling mildly, spoke as follows to His brother, who sat bowed, with folded hands, saying, "O Lakshmana, govern this earth with Me. You are my second Self— this honour has fallen to Your share.

44) O son of Sumitra, enjoy whatever You desire, and all the rewards of kingship too. I wish for life and the realm for Your sake alone!"

45) Having thus addressed Lakshmana, and offering obeisance to His mother, Lord Rama begged leave to depart, and proceeded with Sita to His personal apartment.



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