Sage Vishvamitra along with others reach the banks of River Ganga and they make their sojourn on that riverbank. There when Rama inquisitively enquires about River Ganga Vishvamitra narrates the legend of Ganga, as to how she is taken to heavens by gods from her father Himalayas.
upāsya rātri śeṣam tu śoṇā kūle maharṣibhiḥ |
niśāyām suprabhātāyām viśvāmitro abhyabhāṣata || 1-35-1
1. vishvaamitraH = Viswamitra; raatri sheSam = night, remaining; maharSibhiH shoNaa kuule upaasya = with great-sages, Sona [the river,] on its bank, on sojourning; nishaayaam su prabhaataayaam = night elapsing, sunny, daybreak; abhyabhaaSata = spoke.
On sojourning the remaining night on the bank of river Sona along with great-sages, Viswamitra spoke when that night is elapsing into a sunny daybreak. [1-35-1]
suprabhātā niśā rāma pūrvā saṃdhyā pravartate |
uttiṣṭha uttiṣṭha bhadram te gamanāya abhirocaya || 1-35-2
2. raama = oh, Rama; nisha su prabhaataa = night [fared away,] joyous dawn; puurvaa sandhyaa pravartate = eastern, day-spring, is set in; uttiSTha uttiSTha = awake, arise; te bhadram = to you, let safe be; gamanaaya abhirocaya = for travel, be inspired to - ready yourself.
"Oh, Rama, night fared into a sunny morning, eastern day-spring is set in, hence awake and arise, you be safe, ready yourself for further travel." [1-35-2]
tat śrutvā vacanam tasya kṛtvā paurva āhṇika kriyaḥ |
gamanam rocayāmāsa vākyam ca idam uvāca ha || 1-35-3
3. tasya tat vacanam shrutvaa = his, that, word, on hearing;Rama got up; paurva aahNika kriyaH kR^itvaa = early, morning, religious activities, on performing; gamanam rocayaamaasa = to journey on, shown interest; idam vaakyam ca uvaaca ha = this, sentence, also, said, indeed.
On hearing the words of Sage Vishvamitra, Rama woke up and on completion of morning time religious activities he readied himself for further journey and indeed spoke this sentence to the sage. [1-35-3]
ayam śoṇaḥ śubha jalo gādhaḥ pulina maṇḍitaḥ |
katareṇa pathā brahman saṃtariṣyāmahe vayam || 1-35-4
4. brahman = oh, Brahman; shubha jalaH = one with auspicious, waters; pulina maNDitaH = with sand-dunes, decorated with - overspread; ayam shoNaH = this, [river] Sona; gaadhaH = fordable - not so deep; vayam katareNa pathaa = we, in which of the two, ways; sam tariSyaamahe = very, easily cross it over - rather, without a boat
"This River Sona is with auspicious waters and even adorned with dunes, where it is not so deep. Oh, Brahman, in which of the two ways, namely by fordless waters or by fordable water with dunes, we have to cross this river?" [1-35-4]
evam uktaḥ tu rāmeṇa viśvāmitro abravīt idam |
eṣa paṃthā mayā uddiṣṭo yena yānti maharṣayaḥ || 1-35-5
5. raameNa = by Rama; evam uktaH vishvaamitraH = thus, one who is spoken, Vishvamitra; idam abraviit = this, said; maharSayaH yena [panthaa] yaanti = great-sages, in which [route,] they go; eSa panthaa mayaa uddiSTaH = that, route, by me, is proposed.
When Rama spoke to him thus sage Vishvamitra replied, "I propose the same route by which these great sages are going. [1-35-5]
evam uktvā maharṣayo viśvamitreṇa dhīmatā |
paśyantaḥ te prayātā vai vanāni vividhāni ca || 1-35-6
6. dhiimataa vishvamitreNa evam uktvaa = by astute one, Vishvamitra, thus, said; te maharSayaH = those, great sages; vividhaani vanaani pashyantaH = divers, forests, while beholding; prayaataa vai = they travelled, indeed.
Thus spoken by that astute Sage Vishvamitra, the other great sages travelled on, indeed beholding diverse forests and their environs. [1-35-6]
te gatvā dūram adhvānam gate ardha divase tadā |
jāhnavīm saritām śreṣṭhām dadṛśur muni sevitām || 1-35-7
7. te duuram adhvaanam gatvaa = they, a distance, on their way, on going; tadaa ardha divase gate = then, half, day, while elapsing; muni sevitaam = by sages, adored; saritaam shreSThaam = among rivers, prominent one; jaahnaviim = River Ganga; dadR^ishuH = they perceived.
On going a distance on their way, and after a lapse of half a day, then they perceived the prominent one among rivers and the one adored by sages, namely River Ganga. [1-35-7]
tām dṛṣṭvā puṇya salilām haṃsa sārasa sevitām |
babhūvur munayaḥ sarve muditā saha rāghavāḥ || 1-35-8
8. puNya salilaam = one with pious, waters; hamsa saarasa sevitaam = by swans, by saarasa [waterfowls,] adored by; taam dR^iSTvaa = at her [Ganga], on seeing; saha raaghavaaH = along with, Raghava-s, Rama and Lakshmana; sarve munayaH muditaa babhuuvuH = all, saints, delighted, they became.
On seeing River Ganga with her pious waters and adored by swans and saarasa waterfowls, all the sages felt delighted together with both of the Raghava-s, namely Rama and Lakshmana. [1-35-8]
tasyāḥ tīre tataḥ cakruḥ te āvāsa parigraham |
tataḥ snātvā yathā nyāyam saṃtarpya pitṛ devatāḥ || 1-35-9
hutvā caiva agnihotrāṇi prāśya ca amṛtavat haviḥ |
viviśur jāhnavī tīre śubhā mudita mānasāḥ || 1-35-10
viśvāmitram mahātmānam parivārya samaṃtataḥ |
9, 10, 11a. tataH te = then, they; tasyaaH tiire = on her, banks; aavaasa parigraham cakruH = sojourn, taking, they have done - they camped there; tataH snaatvaa = then, taking bath; yathaa nyaayam = as per, custom; pitR^i devataaH = to fatherly, gods - to manes; sam tarpya = offered oblations; agni hotraaNi hutvaa ca eva = ritual fire, enkindled, also, thus - performed fire oblations; amR^ita vat = ambrosia, like; haviH ca praashya = oblation items, also, on dining; mudita maanasaaH = contented, at hearts - in oblating at river Ganga; mahaatmaanam vishvaamitram = great-souled one, Viswamitra; sam antataH parivaarya = all around, surrounding; shubhaa jaahnavii tiire = on propitious, Ganga, on the banks; vivishuH = they perched.
Then they sojourned on the riverbank of Ganga, and next on taking bath in Ganga they have customarily offered that river's water as oblations to their manes. After that, on enkindling the ritual-fire they have also offered fire-oblations into it for gods. Later, dining on their part of those ambrosian oblations with which they have oblated the fire, those sages perched on the propitious banks of Ganga, surrounding the great-souled Vishvamitra from all sides, to the contentment of their heart in having performed religious chores on the riverbank of Ganga. [1-35-9, 10, 11a]
viṣṭitāḥ ca yathā nyāyam rāghavo ca yathā arham |
saṃprahṛṣṭa manā rāmo viśvāmitram atha abravīt || 1-35-11
11b. viSTitaaH ca = [when sages are] sitting at ease; raaghavau ca = Rama and Lakshmana, also; yathaa nyaayam yathaa arham = as per custom, as, admissible; atha = then; raamaH = Rama; sam pra hR^iSTa manaasa = very, well, gladdened, at heart; vishvaamitram abraviit = to Vishvamitra, spoke.
When sages are sitting at ease then even Rama and Lakshmana sat down according to their admissibility and custom of sitting before their teachers, and then Rama highly gladdened at heart has spoken to Vishvamitra. [1-35-11]
bhagavan śrotum icchāmi gaṅgām tri patha gām nadīm |
trailokyam katham ākraṃya gatā nada nadīpatim || 1-35-12
12. bhagavan = oh, god; tri patha gaam = in three, ways, coursing; ga~Ngaam nadiim = about Ganga, river; shrotum icChaami = to listen, I wish; trai lokyam aakramya = three, worlds, on pervading; nada nadii patim = at rivulet, river, husband of - ocean; katham gataa = how, she reached.
"Oh, godly sage, I wish to listen about Ganga, the river that has a trinal course, and as to how she is reaching the husband of rivulets and rivers, namely the ocean, on pervading all the three worlds." Thus Rama asked Vishvamitra. [1-35-12]
codito rāma vākyena viśvāmitro mahāmuniḥ |
vṛddhim janma ca gaṃgāyā vaktum eva upacakrame || 1-35-13
13. raama vaakyena coditH = by Rama's, words, motivated; vishvaamitrH mahaamuniH = Vishvamitra, eminent-sage; gangaayaaH = of Ganga; janma vR^iddhim ca eva = emergence, progression, also, that way; vaktum upacakrame = to narrate, thus, commenced.
Motivated by Rama's words the eminent-sage Vishvamitra commenced to narrate about the emergence and that way even about the progression of River Ganga. [1-35-13]
śailendro himavān rāma dhātūnām ākaro mahān |
tasya kanyā dvayam rāma rūpeṇa apratimam bhuvi || 1-35-14
14. raama = oh, Rama; dhaatuunaam mahaan aakaraH = for minerals, greatest, repository - treasure trove of; himavaan [naama] = Himavan, [named]; shaila indraH = mountains', lord [is there]; tasya = to him; ruupeNa = by virtue of comeliness; bhuvi a pratimam = on earth, without, another - unequalled; kanyaa dvayam = daughters, pair of; is there.
"The lordly mountain Himavan who is the greatest treasure trove of minerals, Rama, also treasures up a pair of daughters who by their comeliness are unequalled on earth. [1-35-14]
yā meru duhitā rāma tayor mātā sumadhyamā |
nāmnā menā manojñā vai patnī himavataḥ priyā || 1-35-15
15. raama = oh, Rama; naamnaa menaa [naama] = by name, Mena, [she who is renowned like that]; yaa meru duhitaa = she who is, Mt. Meru's, daughter; su madhyamaa = to that slender-waisted one; manoj~naa = fascinating one; himavataH patnii priyaa = Himavan's, dear, wife; tayoH maataa vai = their, mother, indeed.
"The slender-waisted and fascinating daughter of Mt. Meru, oh, Rama, renowned by her name Mena, is the dear wife of Himavan and the mother of those two daughters, indeed. [1-35-15]
tasyām gaṃga iyam abhavat jyeṣṭhā himavataḥ sutā |
umā nāma dvitīyā abhūt kanyā tasya eva rāghava || 1-35-16
16. raaghava = oh, Raghava; iyam ganga = this, Ganga; himavataH = Himavan's; jyeSThaa sutaa = as elder, daughter; tasyaam abhavat = from her [Mena,] emerged; tasya eva = to him, that way; [naamnaa = by name]; umaa naama = Uma, renowned as; dvitiiyaa kanyaa abhuut = second, daughter, became - emerged.
"This Ganga has emerged as an elder daughter to Himavan through Mena, oh, Raghava, and that way a girl renowned by the name Uma has become a second daughter to him. [1-35-16]
atha jyeṣṭhām surāḥ sarve deva kārya cikīrṣayā |
śailendram varayāmāsuḥ gaṃgām tri patha gām nadīm || 1-35-17
17. atha = later; sarve suraaH = all, gods; deva kaarya cikiirSayaa = divine, purpose, interested in; tri patha gaam nadiim = who will ultimately become - three, way, cruising, river; jyeSThaam gangaam = elder one, Ganga is; shailendram varayaamaasuH = mountain, lordly one - Himavan, sought him.
"Later, all of the divinities intending to fulfil a divine purpose have sought the lordly mountain Himavan to spare Ganga, who is scheduled to become a tri-way-cruising river. [1-35-17]
dadau dharmeṇa himavān tanayām loka pāvanīm |
svacchaṃda patha gām gaṃgām trailokya hita kāṃyayā || 1-35-18
18. himavaan dharmeNa = Himavan, with a righteous mind; trai lokya hita kaamyayaa = for three, worlds, welfare, hopeful of; loka paavaniim = worlds, one who is a sanctifier; svacChanda patha gaam = volitionally, in her way, on who flows; tanayaam gangaam dadau = daughter, Ganga, he spared.
"With a righteous thinking and hopeful of the welfare in triadic world, Himavan then spared his daughter Ganga whose flow is at her own volition. [1-35-18]
pratigṛhya triloka artham triloka hita kāṃkṣiṇaḥ |
gaṃgām ādāya te agacchan kṛtārthena aṃtarātmanā || 1-35-19
19. tataH = then; te [devaaH] = those, [gods]; tri loka hita kaankshiNaH [kaariNaH] = for three, world's, well-being, wishing [she who causes weal]; tri loka artham = for three, world's, purpose of; gangaam = Ganga; prati gR^ihya aadaaya = in turn, taking [on receiving, welcoming,] took with them; kR^ita arthena antar aatmanaa = fulfilled, of purpose, in inner, soul; agacChan = came back - to heaven.
"Those divinities who are the well-wishers of the well-being of tri-world welcomed Ganga, who is incidentally intended for the purpose of the tri-world, and they came back to heaven fetching Ganga with them, with a heartfelt joy for their purpose is fulfilled. [1-35-19]
yā ca anyā śaila duhitā kanyā āsīt raghunaṃdana |
ugram suvratam āsthāya tapaḥ tepe tapodhanā || 1-35-20
20. raghunandana = oh, Raghu's descendent; anyaa shaila duhitaa = other, mountain's [Himavanta's], daughter; yaa kanyaa aasiit = which, unmarried girl, is there; [saa = she]; tapaH dhanaa = her ascesis, is her wealth; ugram su vratam aasthaaya = rigorous, supreme, devoutness, taking hold of; tapaH tepe = sacrament, performed.
"The other daughter of Himavanta, oh, Raghu's descendent, that unmarried girl namely Uma, she performed a rigorous sacrament taking hold of a supreme devoutness as her ascesis itself is her wealth. [1-35-20]
ugreṇa tapasā yuktām dadau śailavaraḥ sutām |
rudrāya apratirūpāya umām loka namaskṛtām || 1-35-21
21. shaila varaH = mountain, best [Himavanta]; ugreNa tapasaa yuktaam = one who is - rigorous, sacrament, unified with; loka namaskR^itaam = one who is - by worlds, adored; sutaam umaam = daughter, Uma is; a prati ruupaaya = one with - no, coequal, in aspect [unequalled one, unique god]; rudraaya dadau = to Rudra, gave - in marriage.
"As for Uma who is unified with her rigorous sacrament and who is adored by all the world, that best one among mountains Himavanta gave such a daughter to the unique god Rudra. [1-35-21]
ete te śaila rājasya sute loka namaskṛte |
gaṃgā ca saritām śreṣṭhā umādevī ca rāghava || 1-35-22
22. raaghava = oh, Raghava; saritaam shreSThaa gangaa ca = among rivers, prominent one Ganga, also; umaa devii ca = Uma Devi, also; ete te shaila raajasya = these, they two, mountain, king's - Himavan's; loka namaskR^ite sute = by world, revered, daughters.
"Oh, Raghava, the prominent one among rivers namely Ganga and Uma Devi as well, these are the two daughters of the king of mountains that are highly revered by the world. [1-35-22]
etat te sarvam ākhyātam yathā tri patha gāminī |
kham gatā prathamam tāta gatim gatimatām vara || 1-35-23
23. gati mataam vara = in cruising, [of life] of people, best one; or, one who has beautiful gait - Rama; taata = oh, dear boy; tri patha gaaminii = three, way, cruising; prathamam yathaa = firstly, as to how; kham gataa = to heavens, cruised; etat gatim = all about, cruising; te sarvam aakhyaatam = to you, all in all, is related.
"Dear boy Rama with beautiful gait, as to how the triply coursing Ganga has cruised to heaven in the first phase, I have related all about that cruise to you. [1-35-23]
The three-way coursing of the river is firstly as Ganga in the lap of Himalayas. Then when she cruised heavenward with divinities as Deva Ganga, or Mandaakini or Sudiirghika, it is second. Later, when she came to earth from heaven and gone into ocean and even to netherworlds as Jahnavi, it is the third. There are variations for this. Some say that the river's entry into sky is the first, by taking words gati mataam vara, gati and deriving meaning as - which sky grants a path for all moving things etc., and the next is her entry to heaven, and nextly her coming to earth. And some say that gods have not left her in middle of the sky to come to heaven at a later time, and hence her three courses are as Ganga, Mandaakini, and Jahnavi.
sa eṣā sura nadī raṃyā śailendra tanayā tadā |
sura lokam samārūḍhā vipāpā jala vāhinī || 1-35-24
24. ramyaa = marvellous one; vi paapaa = without, sins; jala vaahinii = in the form of waters, one that flows; saa eSaa = such as she is; shaila indra tanayaa = mountain, lord's, daughter; tadaa = then; sura nadii = divine, river; on becoming; sura lokam sam aaruuDhaa = divinity's, abode [to heaven], well, ascended.
"As such, that marvellous and sinless daughter of the lordly mountain Himavanta, ever-flowing in the form of water, ascended to the abode of divinities and became deva ganga , Divine River. [1-35-24]
iti vālmīki rāmāyaṇe ādi kāvye bāla kāṇḍe paṃca triṃśaḥ sargaḥ
© 2002, Desiraju Kumari [Revised : July 04]
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