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Raghuveera Gadhyam: Yuddha KhAndam--Part 11

From: V. Sadagopan (
Date: Sat Dec 14 1996 - 16:28:27 PST


kAkuthstam dasakanta bahuvidhaLthkodhaNda bANAnvitham 
papagnam visadhAyatAkshi YugaLam sowmithri samsevitham
bhakthAnAm paramoushadham munivarai: samsthuyamAnam bhajE 

GS 60 : abhicharaNa huthavaha paricharaNa vigatana 
sarabhasa paripatadh aparimitha kapibhala jaladhi lahari
kalakalarava kupitha maghavajith abhihanana kruth anuja
sakshika rakshasa dwandhwa Yuddha ! Jaya! Jaya ! 

( Meaning ) : O Raghuveera ! Hail to Thee , who used 
the GaandarvAsthram on the troops of RavaNA's choice fighting 
unit known as mula Bhalam and caused them as a result to 
be deluded to fight with each other instead of fighting with the 
members of your army. Your brother LakshmaNA was the witness
to that  scene of utter confusion in the ranks of RavaNA's soldiers
after he himself had dispatched Indrajith in a fierce battle. Earlier 
Indrajith's eforts to acquire invincible powers through the performance of 
necromancy was interrupted by the huge  army of monkeys which noisily 
invaded the site of that abhichAra homam and interrupted the completion
of that homam . The angry Indrajith stopped the homam halfway 
through and came to fight your brother  and lost his life in that battle.
Hail to thee O Lord , who dispatched the GandharvAsthram !   

(Background ) : After the defeat of RavaNA in the battle field and 
the death of KumbhakarNA at the hands of Rama  and loss of 
many generals of the army of his father , Indrajith returned once again 
to the scene of combat and aimed the powerful BrahmAsthram 
at Rama , LakshmaNA and the simian army . That  missile rendered 
the princes of AyodhyA and the monkey army of Sugreeva totally
unconscious . Rama and LakshmaNA decided to honor the power
of the missile presided over by Brahma and stayed motionless and 
helpless. Sugrreva and  a host of other high-ranking generals
of his army were also knocked out . 

VibhishaNa and Hanumaan were the ones , who were not affected. 
They found the old bear JAmbhavAn lying semiconscious 
on the  battle ground . JaambhavAn advised the approaching  VibhishaNA
that Hanuman alone can save the day . He suggested that HanumAn
known for his speed in the air should rush to a specific site in HimaalayAs
and fetch the four  powerful medicinal herbs to restore Rama , LakshmaNA
and all the monkeys that were rendered unconscious by Indrajith . The bear
king described the four medicines and their power this way : 

(1) Mruthasanjeevini , which had the power to bring the dead  back to life

(2) Visalyakarani , which had the power of extracting the weapons and
healing the wounds caused by those weapons 

(3) SuvarNakaraNi , which had the power to restore the body 
to its original complexion 

(4) SandhAni , which had the power to join back torn limbs 
and broken bones 

Earlier , Sugreeva"s father -in-law had  suggested bringing of these
medicinal herbs by HanumAn. That occasion was when Rama and 
LakshmaNA were bound by the Naga Paasam of Inderjith. Garuda
appeared and chased off the snakes and embraced the brothers back
to their original state. HanumAn did not have to go then in search of these 
four herbs.

HanumAn set forth on this mission and jumped off from the top
of the Trikuta mountain of Lankha in search of the four divine herbs .
As he approached the site of the herbs, they hid from HanumAn's sight .
AnjaneyA got angry at  their lack of compassion to help even Rama ,
Hnauman tore of the whole mountain housing the herbs and sped away 
with frightening speed back to the battle field and put the mountain down 
in the midst of the simian ranks. This expedition gave Hanuman
the name of Sanjeevi Raayan . 

Rama , LakshmaNA and every one of the members of the simian
army recovered from their state of torpor or state of death 
after inhaling the  wind-blown fragrance of these herbs.
Even monkeys , whose dead bodies were cast into the oceans by the ogres
were restored back to life . The joyous monkeys ran through the gates 
of LankhA and set fire to the city. More ogres were killed by the monkeys
and Rama. The surprised Indrajith returned to the battle field and engaged 
in a formidable fight . He used black magic and became invisible and began
to torment the princes of AyodhyA once again . He then retreated to the city and

returned with an illusory image of Sita and killed  her in front of Hanumaan . 
Sri Rama fainted on hearing the death of Sita. LakshmaNA and VibhishaNA 
consoled Rama. LakshmaNA vowed then  to kill Inderjith. VibhishaNA 
told  Rama that Sita was alive and that his nephew was only creating an
illusory act so that he can return to a secret place( Nikumbhila) to gain more 
magical powers through performance.of a homam based on necromancy .

VibhishaNA guided the simian army and LakshmaNA to the 
site of the abhichara homam . The monkeys fell on the site
in huge numbers and  disrupted the completion of that homam .
There was a mighty battle between LakshmaNA and Indrajith.
LakshmaNa used  a missile presided by IndrA and addressed 
the following prayer to IndrAsthrA  : " If Sri Rama , son of Dasaratha 
has set his mind on virtue and is true to his promise  and is
unrivalled in prowess , make short work , the , of this son of RavaNA ."

Sage Valmiki's sloakm housing this prayer of lakshmaNA is as follows :

dharmAthmA satyasandhasccha ramO dAsarathiryathA I
powrushE chAprathidhwandhvasthadhainam jahi ravaNim II 

After this prayer , LakshmaNA released the Missile presided
over by IndrA . Flying at lightning speed , that missile severed the
head of Indrajith . 

RamA was delighted with the news of Indrajith's death at LakshmaNA's
hands at Nikumbhilai . RavaNA was grief stricken over the loss of his son.
He sent his diverse battalion known as mula Balam to avenge the death
of his beloved son. Rama dispatched the mystic GandharvAsthram 
presided over by the GandharvAs . That asthram created the illusion of 
many Ramas in the middle of the ranks of the Mula balam . The  rank
and file of RavaNA's powerful army mistook each other for Rama and 
killed each other . There was utter confusion in the  battle field . Two
lakhs of ogres fighting on foot were eliminated by Rama single-handedly
through the use of GandharvAsthram . LakshmaNa was the  thrilled 
witness to the prowess of his brother , which he ahd invoked in his 
prayer to the IndrAsthram to decapitate Indrajith. That is what Swami
Desikan refers to in the sixtieth salutation of Raghuveera Gadhyam, when 
he addresses Rama as " Maghavajith abhihanana kruth anuja 
SAAKSHIKA  rakshasa dwandhva Yuddha ." 

Thus ends the ninety third canto of the Yuddha KhAndam of 
Sage Valmiki's Srimadh RaamAyaNam from which Swami Desikan
drew his inspiration .

Sri VaishNava Daasan ,

Oppiliappan Koil VaradAchAri Sadagopan