Enquiring about his father Gautama's reuniting with his mother Ahalya, Sage Shataananda relates the legend of Vishvamitra. Shataananda greets Rama for his adherence to the rectitude of Vishvamitra, which Vishvamitra gained through a series of self-important exploits, when he was a great king at one time. Shataananda finds worth in informing the biography of Vishvamitra to Rama, because too much of overbearing of kings, as has been done by Vishvamitra, will be unbecoming for kings.
tasya tat vacanam shrutvaa vishvaamitrasya dhiimataH |
hR^iShTa romaa mahaatejaaH shataaanando mahaatapaaH || 1-51-1
gautamasya suto jyeShThaH tapasaa dyotita prabhaH |
raama saMdarshanaat eva param vismayam aagataH || 1-51-2
1. dhiimataH = intellectual one; tasya vishvaamitrasya tat vacanam shrutvaa = his, of Vishvamitra, that, sentence, on hearing; mahaatejaaH mahaatapaaH = highly refulgent, great-ascetic; gautamasya jyeSThaH sutaH = Sage Gautama's, eldest, son; tapasaa dyotita prabhaH = by ascesis, brightened, radiance - who has it; such a; shataaanandaH = sage Shataananda; hR^iSTa romaa = rejoiced, hair [hair-raising, overjoyed]; raama sandarshanaat eva = Rama, on seeing at, just by; param vismayam aagataH = great, amazement, he obtained.
On hearing that sentence of that intellectual sage Vishvamitra, the highly refulgent and the great ascetic Shataananda is overjoyed, and Sage Shataananda, the eldest son of Sage Gautama, and whose radiance is brightened by his own ascesis is highly amazed just on seeing Rama. [1-51-1, 2]
etau niShaNNau saMprekShya sukha aasiinau nR^ipaatmajau |
shataaanaMdo munishreShTham vishvaamitram atha abraviit || 1-51-3
3. atha = then; shataaanandaH = Shataananda; niSaNNau = the two whose heads are bent - bowing submissively; sukha aasiinau = comfortably, seated; etau nR^ipaatmajau samprekSya = those two, king's sons [princes,] on raptly observing; munishreSTham vishvaamitram abraviit = to sage, the eminent, to Vishvamitra, spoke.
On raptly observing those two princes who are sitting comfortably with their heads bending down submissively, then Shataananda spoke to the eminent sage Vishvamitra. [1-51-3]
api te muni shaarduula mama maataa yashasvinii |
darshitaa raaja putraaya tapo diirgham upaagataa || 1-51-4
4. muni shaarduula = oh, saint, tigerly Vishvamitra; diirgham tapaH upaagataa = marathon, ascesis, came near [who meted out]; yashasvinii = glorious one; mama maataa = my, mother; te = by you; raaja putraaya = to princes; api darshitaa = even, is she revealed?
"Oh, tigerly saint Vishvamitra, you have revealed my glorious mother Ahalya who meted out a marathon ascesis to the princes - Really! [1-51-4]
api raame mahaatejo mama maataa yashasvinii |
vanyaiH upaaharat puujaam puujaa arhe sarva dehinaam || 1-51-5
5. mahaatejaH yashasvinii = highly resplendent one, celebrated one - Ahalya; mama maataa = my, mother; sarva dehinaam = by every, one with body [with corporeity, corporeal beings]; puujaa arhe raame = for deference, worthy of, in Rama - in respect of Rama; vanyaiH = with forest produce - flowers and fruits; puujaam api upaaharat = worship, even, has she performed - has she worshipped him?
"And the highly resplendent and celebrated mother of mine worshipped Rama, who is worthy of worship by every corporeal being, with forest produce, is it so! [1-51-5]
api raamaaya kathitam yathaa vR^ittam puraatanam |
mama maatuH mahaatejo daivena duranuShThitam || 1-51-6
6. mahaatejaH = oh, great-resplendent - Vishvamitra; mama maatuH = my, mother; daivena dur anuSThitam = by Providence, mal-, treatment - subjected to; puraatanam = anciently - happened episode; yathaa vR^ittam = as, happened; raamaaya api kathitam = to Rama, even, , narrated.
"Oh, great-resplendent Vishvamitra, you have narrated to Rama about the maltreatment of my mother by the Providence as has happened anciently, isn't it![1-51-6]
api kaushika bhadram te guruNaa mama saMgataa |
maataa mama munishreShTha raama saMdarshanaat itaH || 1-51-7
7. kaushika = oh, Kaushika; te bhadram = to you, let safety be; munishreSTha = oh sage, the best; mama maataa = my, mother; raama sandarshanaat itaH = Rama's, by bolding - giving hospitality etc; mama guruNaa = with my, father; api sangataa = even, joined - reunited with.
"Oh, the best sage Kaushika, you be safe, my mother is reunited with my father on beholding and giving hospitality to Rama - Really! [1-51-7]
api me guruNaa raamaH puujitaH kushikaatmaja |
iha aagato mahaatejaaH puujaam praapya mahaatmanaH || 1-51-8
8. kushikaatmaja = oh, Kushi's, son [Kaushika, Vishvamitra]; raamaH = Rama; me guruNaa api puujitaH = by my, father, even, is he worshipped; iha aagataH mahaatejaaH = here [to Ahalya's place,] one who came, great-resplendent one [Gautama, Shataananda's father]; mahaatmanaH = from great-souled one [from Rama]; puujaam api praapya = worship, even, has he [Rama] got.
"Oh, Kaushika, my father came to my mother's place from Himalayas! Has the great resplendent father of mine worshipped Rama because the redemption of my mother is per the kindness of Rama! Has this great-souled Rama reverenced that great resplendent father of mine by according a redemption, ahalyaa daana, the endowment of Ahalya to her husband. [1-51-8]
api shaaMtena manasaa guruH me kushikaatmaja |
iha aagatena raameNa puujitena abhivaaditaH || 1-51-9
9. kushikaatmaja = oh, son of Kushika, Vishvamitra; iha aagatena = to here [at Ahalya's place,] who came; puujitena = by a reverential one - Rama [prayatena = by a pure soul - Rama]; raameNa = by Rama; me guruH = my, father; shaantena manasaa = with a pacified, heart; api abhivaaditaH = whether, reverenced.
"Oh, Kaushika, on his arrival at my mother's place whether this reverential Rama reverenced my father with a pacified heart without becoming contumelious!" Thus sage Shataananda exclaimed at the marvel occurred through Rama. [1-51-9]
tat shrutvaa vacanam tasya vishvaamitro mahaamuniH |
prati uvaaca shataanaMdam vaakyaj~no vaakya kovidam || 1-51-10
10. mahaamuniH vishvaamitraH = great-saint, Vishvamitra; tasya tat vacanam shrutvaa = his, that, sentence, on hearing; vaakya j~naH = sententious one [Vishvamitra]; vaakya kovidam shataanandam = sentence-precisian to sentence, to precisionist, to Shataananda; prati uvaaca = in reply, spoke.
On hearing that sentence of his, that great-saint and sentence-precisian Sage Vishvamitra, replied the sentence-precisionist Sage Shataananda. [1-51-10]
na atikraantam munishreShTha yat kartavyam kR^itam mayaa |
saMgataa muninaa patnii bhaar.hgaveNa iva reNukaa || 1-51-11
11. munishreSTha = oh, sage the best - oh, Shataananda; na atikraantam = not, over, stepped - nothing left unperformed; mayaa yat kartavyam = by me, whatever, performable; kR^itam = that is performed; reNukaa bhaargaveNa iva = Renuka, with [the descendent of] Bhaargava or Bhrugu, as with; patnii muninaa sangataa = wife [of sage,] with sage, is reunited.
"I have done whatever good is to be done and nothing is left undone, and the wife of the sage, namely Ahalya, is reunited with her husband sage Gautama, as with Renuka who was reunited with sage Jamagani, the descendent of Bhrigu." So said Vishvamitra. [1-51-11]
Renuka is the mother of Parashu Rama, another human incarnation of Vishnu as a Brahmin to struggle with the erring Kshatriya kings of an earlier era. Renuka's husband is Sage Jamadagni, the descendent of Bhrigu or also called as Bhaargava and on certain occasion, Jamadagi, orders his son Parashu Rama to behead her, i.e., Renuka, Parashu Rama's own mother and Parashu Rama unhesitatingly carries out his father's orders. Thus, Parashu Rama is called Bhaargava Rama, with an axe as his unsurpassed weapon. This Parashu Rama confronts Rama of Ramayana after Seetha's marriage.
tat shrutvaa vacanam tasya vishvaamitrasya dhiimataH |
shataanaMdo mahaatejaa raamam vacanam abraviit || 1-51-12
12. tasya vishvaamitrasya dhiimataH = his, Vishvamitra's, highly intellectual one; tat vacanam shrutvaa = that, sentence, on hearing; mahaatejaaH shataanandaH = of high refulgence, Shataananda; raamam vacanam abraviit = to Rama, sentence, spoke.
On hearing those words of that highly intellectual Vishvamitra, high refulgent sage Shataananda spoke these words to Rama. [1-51-12]
svaagatam te narashreShTha diShTyaa praapto asi raaghava |
vishvaamitram puraskR^itya maharShim aparaajitam || 1-51-13
13. narashreSTha raaghava = oh, best among men, oh, Raghava; [svaagatam te = hail to thee; a paraajitam = not, defeatable one; maharSim vishvaamitram puraskR^itya = great-sage, Vishvamitra, keeping afore [spearheaded by]; diSTyaa praaptaH asi = as godsend, chanced, you are; svaagatam te = hail, to thee.
"Hail to thee! Oh, best one among men Rama, your arrival is a godsend, not only to Mithila but to entire humanity, and oh, Raghava, as an undefeatable great-sage Vishvamitra spearheads you, so shall your mission be undefeatable, thus hail to thee! [1-51-13]
This statement of Sage Shataananda shall remind us the utterances of Vishvamitra in Dasharatha's court at 1-19-14: aham vedmi mahaatmaanam raamam... 'I know this great soul Rama, the virtue valiant, even Vashishta and also these saints who are here...' So also, Shataananda being the son of Ahalya and Gautama perceived who this Rama is. Further, when such and such a sage spearheads Rama, Rama ought to know something about the background of his steersman, namely Vishvamitra, basing on which Rama can learn his own lessons. As such, next few chapters are catered to the legend of Vishvamitra through Shataananda.
acintya karmaa tapasaa brahmarShiH amita prabhaH |
vishvaamitro mahaatejaa - vedMya - vetsi enam paramaam gatim || 1-51-14
14. mahaatejaa vishvaamitraH = highly resplendent, Vishvamitra; a cintya karmaa = is of un, imaginable, exploits; tapasaa brahmarSiH = by ascesis, Brahma-sage; a mita prabhaH = of ill, imitable, resplendence; enam paramaam gatim = him, as ultimate, course; [vedmya = you have to know] vetsi = you [already] know.
"This highly resplendent Vishvamitra's exploits are unimaginable. He attained the highest order of Brahma-sage by his ascesis, thus illimitable is his ascetic resplendence, and you have to know him as an ultimate course, not only to you alone, but also to one and all. [1-51-14]
If the text 'you already know him...' is adopted there will be nothing left to Shataananda to say more. Hence, the meaning is said on taking vedmya 'you should know some more...' would be better. Because Vishvamitra is a parama hita sandhaayaka 'a do-gooder for universal peace' as indicated by his name itself, vishva 'of universe...' mitra 'friend, 'friend of universe...'
na asti dhanyataro raama tvatto anyo bhuvi kashcana |
goptaa kushika putraH te yena taptam mahat tapaH || 1-51-15
15. raama = oh, Rama; bhuvi = on earth; tvattaH = than you; dhanya taraH = fortunate, better; anyaH = another one; kashcana = anyone; na asti = not, is there; yena mahat tapaH taptam = by whom, supreme, ascesis, practised; such a sage; kushika putraH = Kushi's, scion, namely Vishvamitra; te goptaa = to you, protector.
"None other than you is fortunate enough on earth, oh, Rama, as you are in the custodial care of Vishvamitra, the scion of Kushika, who has practised supreme ascesis. [1-51-15]
shruuyataam ca abhidhaasyaami kaushikasya mahaatmanaH |
yathaa balam yathaa tattvam tat me nigadataH shR^iNu || 1-51-16
16. mahaatmanaH kaushikasya = great-souled, Vishvamitra's; balam yathaa = prowess, as to how; shruuyataam = I will let you hear - hear from me; tattvam [vR^ittam] = quintessence [his legend]; yathaa = as to how; abhidhaasyaami = I will narrate; tat me nigadataH shR^iNu = that, from me, while being narrated, you listen.
"What is the prowess of the great-souled Vishvamitra, and what the quintessence of his legend may be heard from me while I narrate it. [1-51-16]
raajaa abhuut eSha dharmaatmaa diirgha kaalam arindamaH |
dharmaj~naH kR^ita vidyaH ca prajaanaam ca hite rataH || 1-51-17
17. eSa = he; dharmaatmaa = probity-souled one Vishvamitra; dharma j~naH = in rectitude, well-versed [proficient] one; kR^ita vidyaH ca = made [perfected,] education [perfectionist in kingcraft,] also; prajaanaam ca hite rataH = for people, also, in welfare, proponent of; arin damaH = enemies, persecutor of; diirgha kaalam raajaa abhuut = for long, time, king, was there, he was.
"This probity-souled Vishvamitra, being a proficient in rectitude, a perfectionist in kingcraft, a proponent of people's welfare, more so a persecutor of enemies, was there as a king for a long time. [1-51-17]
prajaapati sutaH tu aasiit kusho naama mahiipatiH |
kushasya putro balavaan kushanaabhaH sudhaarmikaH || 1-51-18
18. prajaapati sutaH = Prajapati's, brainchild; kushaH naama mahii patiH = Kusha, named, earth, lord [king]; aasiit = was there; balavaan = powerful one; su dhaarmikaH = verily, righteous one; kushanaabhaH = Kushanaabha is; kushasya putraH = Kusha's, son.
"There was a king named Kusha, a brainchild of Prjaapati, and Kusha's son was the powerful and verily righteous Kushanaabha. [1-51-18]
kushanaabha sutaH tu aasiit gaadhiH iti eva vishrutaH |
gaadheH putro mahaatejaa vishvaamitro mahaamuniH || 1-51-19
19. gaadhiH iti eva vi shrutaH = Gaadhi, thus, only, verily heard [of highly renowned]; kushanaabha sutaH tu = Kushanaabha's, son, but; aasiit = was there; mahaatejaaH mahaa muniH vishvaamitraH = great resplendence, great-saint, Vishvamitra; gaadheH putraH = Gaadhi's, son.
"One who is highly renowned by the name Gaadhi was the son of Kushanaabha, and Gaadhi's son is this great-saint of great resplendence, Vishvamitra. [1-51-19]
vishvamitro mahaatejaaH paalayaamaasa mediniim |
bahu varSha sahasraaNi raajaa raajyam akaarayat || 1-51-20
20. mahaatejaaH vishvamitraH = great resplendent, Vishvamitra - the king; mediniim paalayaamaasa = the earth, was ruling; raajaa = king; bahu varSa sahasraaNi = many, years, thousands; raajyam akaarayat = kingdom, made [ruled.]
"Vishvamitra ruled the earth, and this great-resplendent king ruled the kingdom for many thousands of years. [1-51-20]
kadaacit tu mahaatejaa yojayitvaa varuuthiniim |
akShauhiNii parivR^itaH paricakraama mediniim || 1-51-21
21. mahaatejaaH = great-resplendent king Vishvamitra; kadaacit = at one time; varuuthiniim yojayitvaa = armies, combining [marshalling]; akSauhiNii parivR^itaH = with Akshauhini unit of army, encircled by - along with; mediniim paricakraama = earth, he circulated - gone round.
"At one time the great-resplendent king Vishvamitra went round the earth marshalling a unit of akshauhini army. [1-51-21]
The army unit called akshauhini consists of 21,870 elephants, as many chariots, 65,610 cavalry, and 1,09,350 foot soldiers.
nagaraaNi ca raaShTraani saritaH ca tathaa giriin |
aashramaan kramasho raajaa vicaran aajagaama ha || 1-51-22
vasiShThasya aashrama padam naanaa puShpa lataa drumam |
naanaa mR^iga gaNa aakiirNam siddha caaraNa sevitam || 1-51-23
deva daanava gandharvaiH kinnaraiH upashobhitam |
prashaaMta hariNa aakiirNam dvija saMgha niShevitam || 1-51-24
brahma R^iShi gaNa saMkiirNam deva R^iShi gaNa sevitam |
tapaH caraNa saMsiddhaiH agni kalpaiH mahaatmabhiH || 1-51-25
satatam saMkulam shriimat brahma kalpaiH mahaatmabhiH |
ab bhakShaiH vaayu bhakShaiH ca shiirNa parNa ashanaiH tathaa || 1-51-26
phalamuulaashanairdaantairjitadoShairjitendriyaiH - yadvaa -
phala muula ashanaiH daantaiH jita doShaiH jita indriyaiH |
R^iShibhiH vaalakhilyaiH ca japa homa paraayaNaiH || 1-51-27
anyaiH vaikhaanasaiH caiva samaMtaat upashobhitam |
22, 23, 24, 2125, 26, 27, 28a. nagaraaNi raaSTraani ca = cities, provinces, also; saritaH tathaa giriin = rivers, like that, mountains; aashramaan ca = hermitages, also; kramashaH = sequentially; vicaran = while moving about; naanaa puSpa lataa drumam = numerous, flowered, climbers, trees - which has; naanaa mR^iga gaNa aakiirNam = very many, animals, herds of, overspread - which is; siddha caaraNa sevitam = by siddha-s, caaranaa-s, adored by; at such a hermitage; deva daanava gandharvaiH kinnaraiH upashobhitam = gods, demons, gandharva-s, kinnaraa-s, [frequented and] embellished with; prashaanta hariNaa aakiirNam = equable, deer, spread out; dvija sangha niSevitam = birds, flights of, adored by; brahma R^iSi gaNa sankiirNam = Brahma, sage's, assemblages, compacted with; deva R^iSi gaNa sevitam = godly, sages, assemblages, adored by; satatam sankulam = always, bustling with; tapaH caraNa sam siddhaiH = ascesis, practising, well, accomplished ones - with them; agni kalpaiH = Ritual-fire, similar; mahaatmabhiH = with great-souled ones; brahma kalpaiH = to Brahma, comparable ones; mahaa aatmabhiH = with great-souled ones; ab bhakSaiH = water, eaters [some subsisting on] ; vaayu bhakSaiH ca = [some subsist on,] air, eaters, also; shiirNa parNa ashanaiH tathaa = dried, leaves, eaters, likewise [some subsisting on them]; phala muula ashanaiH = fruits, tubers, eaters [some subsisting on]; daantaiH = self-controlled ones; jita doSaiH = overcame, peccabilites; jita indriyaiH = overpowered, senses; R^iSibhiH vaalakhilyaiH ca = with sages, Vaalakhilyaa-s, also; japa homa paraayaNaiH = meditations, oblations in Ritual-fire, who are occupied with; anyaiH vaikhaanasaiH caiva = with others, Vaikhaanasa-s, also thus; sam antaat = well, up to end - whole of perimeter; upashobhitam brightened with; shriimat = magnificent one [to such a hermitage of]; vasiSThasya aashrama padam = Vashishta's, hermitage's, threshold of; raajaa aajagaama ha = king Vishvamitra, arrived, indeed.
"Moving sequentially about the provinces, cities, rivers likewise mountains, king Vishvamitra arrived at the threshold of a hermitage which is with numerous flowered trees and climbers, overspread with very many herds of animals, adored by the celestials like siddha-s and caarana-s, frequented and embellished with gods, demons, gandharva-s, and kinnara-s, spread out with equable deer, adored by flights of birds, compacted with the assemblages of Brahma-sages, and also with the assemblages of godly-sages who are fully accomplished in their ascesis, where the personal resplendence of each of the great-souled sage is similar to each of the Ritual-fire available in each of the Ritual Fire Altar before which he is sitting, and which hermitage is bustling with the activity of great-souled sages who are comparable to Brahma, among whom some subsist on water alone, and some on air alone, likewise some more on dry leaves, while some on fruits, tubers, and with such of those sages and also with particular sages like Vaalakhilyaa-s, also with others like Vaikhaanasa-s, who are all self-controlled, who have overcame their peccabilites, who have overpowered their senses that hermitage is occupied, and while everyone of the inmates is engaged in meditations and oblations into Ritual-fire, and with such sages and their activity whole of the perimeter of that hermitage is brightened and rendered splendent, and king Vishvamitra arrived at such a magnificent hermitage of Sage Vashishta. [1-51-22, 23, 24, 2125, 26, 27, 28a]
vasiShThasya aashrama padam brahma lokam iva aparam |
dadarsha jayataam shreShTha vishvaamitro mahaabalaH || 1-51-28
28. jayataam shreSTha = among vanquishers, best one; mahaabalaH vishvaamitraH = great-stalwart, Vishvamitra; a param = not, other [not in other world, this worldly]; brahma lokam iva = Brahma's, universe, like; vasiSThasya aashrama padam = Vashishta's, Hermitage's, threshold; dadarsha = has seen.
"And this best one among vanquishers and the great-stalwart Vishvamitra has then seen the hermitage of Vashishta which is like the worldly Universe of Brahma." Thus Sage Shataananda continued his narration. [1-51-28]
iti vaalmiiki raamaayaNe aadi kaavye baala kaaNDe eka paMcaashaH sargaH
© Nov, 2002, Desiraju Hanumanta Rao [Revised : November 04]