Sage Vishvamitra curses his sons as they defy his orders and accords two esoteric hymns to Shunashepa, for chanting them in the Vedic-ritual of Ambariisha. Shunashepa gets longevity on chanting those hymns. Thus Vishvamitra not only creates another universe as in Trishanku's episode, he even accords longevity, or even deathlessness to mortals by his ascetic power. Such as he is, he is the mentor of Rama, and hence Sage Shataananda informs Rama about the capabilities of his own mentor, Vishvamitra, in these many episodes.
शुनःशेपम् नरश्रेष्ठ गृहीत्वा तु महायशाः |
व्यश्रामत् पुष्करे राजा मध्याह्ने रघुनंदन || १-६२-१
1. narashreSTha = oh, best among men, Rama; raghuna.ndana = oh, Raghu's, legatee; mahaayashaaH raajaa = highly renowned one, that king Ambariisha; shunaHshepam gR^ihiitvaa = Shunashepa, on taking; madhya ahne = in mid, day - at noontime; puSkare vyashraamat = at holy lakeside, took rest.
"Oh, Rama, the best one among men and the legatee of Raghu, on taking Shunashepa that highly renowned king Ambariisha took rest at noontime on the lakeside of Holy Lake." Thus Sage Shataananda continued the legend of Shunashepa, as a part of Vishvamitra's legend. [1-62-1]
तस्य विश्रममाणस्य शुनःशेपो महायशाः |
पुष्करम् ज्येष्ठम् आगंय विश्वामित्रम् ददर्श ह || १-६२-२
तप्यन्तम् ऋषिभिः सार्थम् मातुलम् परम आतुरः |
2, 3a: tasya = his [Ambariisha]; vishramamaaNasya = while resting; mahaayashaaH shunaHshepaH = highly brilliant, Shunashepa; parama aaturaH = with high, anxiety; jyeSTham puSkaram aagamya = elder [main one,] holy lakeside, having come; R^iSibhiH saartham tapyantam = [other] sages, along with, performing ascesis; maatulam vishvaamitram dadarsha ha = maternal uncle, at Vishvamitra, he [Shunashepa] saw, indeed.
"While the king Ambariisha is taking rest that highly brilliant Shunashepa came to the lakeside of main Holy Lake with high anxiety, and there he indeed saw his maternal uncle Sage Vishvamitra who is performing ascesis along with other sages. [1-62-2, 3a]
विषण्ण वदनो दीनः तृष्णया च श्रमेण च || १-६२-३
पपात अन्के मुने राम वाक्यम् च इदम् उवाच ह |
3b, 4a. raama = oh, Rama; tR^iSNayaa ca shrameNa ca = by thirst, also, by strain, also; viSaNNa vadanaH = sulky, faced; diinaH = became pitiable; [aashu = immediately]; mune anke papaata = in saint Vishvamitra's, in flank [lap,] fell down; idam vaakyam uvaaca ha = this, sentence, said, indeed.
"Shunashepa became pitiable and sulky faced by strain and thirst, oh, Rama, and he immediately fell in the lap of saint Vishvamitra saying this sentence. [1-62-3b, 4a]
न मे अस्ति माता न पिता ज्ञातयो बान्धवाः कुतः || १-६२-४
त्रातुम् अर्हसि माम् सौंय धर्मेण मुनिपुंगव |
4b, 5a. saumya munipungava = oh, peaceable, sage; me maataa na asti = to me, mother, not, is there; pita na = father, nor; j~naatayaH baandhavaaH kutaH = cousins, relatives, wherefore; maam dharmeNa traatum arhasi = me, according to saintliness, to protect, apt of you.
" 'I have no mother or a father to save me. Then wherefore cousins or relatives will be there to protect me. Oh, peaceable saint the eminent, it will be apt of you to protect me according to saintliness. [1-62-4b, 5a]
त्राता त्वम् हि नरश्रेष्ठ सर्वेषाम् त्वम् हि भावनः || १-६२-५
राजा च कृतकार्यः स्यात् अहम् दीर्घ आयुः अव्ययः |
स्वर्ग लोकम् उपाश्नीयाम् तपः तप्त्वा हि अनुत्तमम् || १-६२-६
5b, 6. narashreSTha = oh, best one among men - illustrious sage; tvam sarveSaam traataa hi = you are, to each and every one, saviour, isn't it; tvam bhaavanaH hi = you are, apologist - upholder - guardian angel, isn't it; raajaa ca kR^ita kaaryaH syaat = king Ambariisha, also, achieved, [of his] purpose, let him be; aham diirgha aayuH = I, with long, life; a vyayaH = not, spent on becoming imperishable; an uttamam tapaH taptvaa hi = un, excelled, ascesis, on performing, indeed; svarga lokam upaashniiyaam = heavenly, worlds, I wish to enjoy.
" 'Oh, illustrious sage, you alone are the saviour to each and every one, isn't it! You alone are the guardian angel, isn't it! Hence, let the purpose of the king Ambariisha be achieved, and let longevity come to me, and I on becoming imperishable and indeed on performing an unexcelled ascesis, I wish to enjoy in heavenly worlds. [1-62-5b, 6]
स मे नाथो हि अनाथस्य भव भव्येन चेतसा |
पिता इव पुत्रम् धर्माअत्मन् त्रातुम् अर्हसि किल्बिषात् || १-६२-७
7. a naathasya = for not, protected one; me = to me; saH = such as you are; [tvam = you]; bhavyena cetasaa hi = with providential, sentiment, indeed; naathaH bhaava = [my] providence, you become; dharmaaatman = oh, virtue-souled one; pitaa putram iva = father, for son, as with; kilbiSaat traatum arhasi = from misfortune, to protect, apt of you.
" You shall be my providence with a providential sentiment as I stand unprotected, and oh, virtue souled one, it will be apt of you to protect me from misfortune, like a father protecting his own son.' Thus Shunashepa appealed to Vishvamitra. [1-62-7]
तस्य तत् वचनम् श्रुत्वा विश्वामित्रो महातपाः |
सान्त्वयित्वा बहु विधम् पुत्रान् इदम् उवाच ह || १-६२-८
8. mahaa tapaaH vishvaamitraH = of higher ascesis, Vishvamitra; tasya tat vacanam shrutvaa = his [of Shunashepa,] that, sentence, on hearing; bahu vidham saantvayitvaa = in many, a way, having pacified; putraan idam uvaaca ha = to [his] sons, this, said, indeed.
"On hearing that sentence of Shunashepa and on pacifying him in many ways, Vishvamitra of higher ascesis, indeed said this to his sons. [1-62-8]
यत् कृते पितरः पुत्रान् जनयन्ति शुभ अर्थिनः |
पर लोक हित अर्थाय तस्य कालो अयम् आगतः || १-६२-९
9. shubha arthinaH pitaraH = positivity, desirers of, parents; yat kR^ite = for what, reason; para loka hita arthaaya = in other, world, welfare, for the purpose of; putraan janayanti = sons, engender; tasya = its [that reason's]; ayam kaalaH aagataH = this [is that,] time, [that] has come.
" 'For what reason parents engender sons, desiring positivity and for the purpose of welfare in the other worlds, this is the time that has come for fulfilling that reason. [1-62-9]
Vividly: 'A father's ambition in begetting sons is to do something good and positive to the society in the present world and when departed a right place is acquired in heavens through these sons, by their yearly death-day rituals etc., and hence you do some good in saving this boy from premature death and earn an apt place for me in heavens...'
अयम् मुनि सुतो बालो मत्तः शरणम् इच्छति |
अस्य जीवित मात्रेण प्रियम् कुरुत पुत्रकाः || १-६२-१०
10. muni sutaH ayam baalaH = sage's, son, this, youngster; mattaH = from me; sharaNam icChati = shelter, aspires; putrakaaH = oh, sons; asya = to him; jiivita maatreNa = life, just [by giving]; priyam kuruta = satisfaction, be given.
" 'This youngster is the son of sage and he aspires shelter from me. Hence, oh, sons, give him satisfaction just by giving life to him. [1-62-10]
सर्वे सुकृत कर्माणः सर्वे धर्म परायणाः |
पशु भूता नरेन्द्रस्य तृप्तिम् अग्नेः प्रयच्छत || १-६२-११
11. sarve = all of you; su kR^ita karmaaNaH = well, done, pious deeds; sarve dharma paraayaNaaH = you all, in probity, have abidance; narendrasya = of the king; pashu bhuutaa = [ritual] animal, on becoming; agneH tR^iptim prayacChata = to Fire-god, appeasement, you bestow.
" 'You all have done very good pious deeds and you all abide by probity. Hence, you bestow appeasement to Fire-god on your becoming the ritual-animals of king Ambariisha in lieu of this boy Shunashepa. [1-62-11]
नाथनान् च शुनःशेपो यज्ञः च अविघ्नतो भवेत् |
देवताः तर्पिताः च स्युः मम च अपि कृतम् वचः || १-६२-१२
12. shunaHshepaH naathanaan ca = Shunashepa will be, with protectors, also; yaj~naH ca a vighnataH bhavet = Vedic-ritual, also, un, impeded, it will become; devataaH tarpitaaH ca syuH = gods, oblated, also, they will be; mama vacaH ca api kR^itam = mine, word, also, even, actualised.
" 'As a result, Shunashepa will have protectors, Vedic-ritual will be unimpeded, gods will be oblated, and my word too will be actualised.' Thus Vishvamitra said to his sons. [1-62-12]
मुनेः तु वचनम् श्रुत्वा मधुष्यन्द आदयः सुताः |
स अभिमानम् नरश्रेष्ठ स लीलम् इदम् अब्रुवन् || १-६२-१३
13. nara shreSTha = oh, man the best, Rama; madhuSyanda aadayaH sutaaH tu = Madhu syanda, and other, sons - of Vishvamitra, on their part; muneH vacanam shrutvaa = sage's, saying, on hearing; sa abhimaanam = with, haughtiness; sa liilam = with, disparage; idam abruvan = this, said.
"But on hearing the saying of the sage, oh, Rama, the best of men, Madhushyanda and the other sons of Vishvamitra said this, haughtily and disparagingly. [1-62-13]
कथम् आत्म सुतान् हित्वा त्रायसे अन्य सुतम् विभो |
अकार्यम् इव पश्यामः श्व मांसम् इव भोजने || १-६२-१४
14. vibho = oh, lordly [father]; aatma sutaan hitvaa = your own, sons, on leaving off [sacrificing]; anya sutam katham traayase = other's, son, how, you save; bhojane shva maamsam iva = in dinner, dog's, meat, as [good as]; a kaaryam iva pashyaamaH = wrong, doing, we see [we deem.]
" 'On sacrificing your own sons how can you save another's son, oh, lordly father, we deem this as a wrongdoing and as good as dog's meat in a dinner.' Thus the sons of Vishvamitra replied their father. [1-62-14]
Vishvamitra will be nagged by almost all, including his sons, on this 'dog-meat-eating.' There is a parable in Maha Bharata that Vishvamitra once tried to eat dog's meat when he did not get any food, but caught red-handedly. Later this has become the curse-theme to Vishvamitra when he cursed Vashishta's sons. At the present juncture also he curses his own sons with the same theme.
तेषाम् तत् वचनम् श्रुत्वा पुत्राणाम् मुनिपुंगवः |
क्रोध संरक्त नयनो व्याहर्तुम् उपचक्रमे || १-६२-१५
15. muni pungavaH = sage, the eminent; teSaam putraaNaam tat vacanam shrutvaa = their, of sons, that, saying, on listening; krodha samrakta nayanaH = with fury, reddening, eyes; vyaahartum upacakrame = to speak [to curse,] started to.
"On listening that saying of his sons that eminent sage Vishvamitra started to curse them while fury reddened his eyes. [1-62-15]
निःसाध्वसम् इदम् प्रोक्तम् धर्मात् अपि विगर्हितम् |
अतिक्रंय तु मत् वाक्यम् दारुणम् रोम हर्षणम् || १-६२-१६
16. mat vaakyam ati kramya = my, word, [you all] on over, stepping - on transgressing; dharmaat api = according to probity, even; vi garhitam = verily, recriminatory; daaruNam = abhorrent; roma harSaNam = hair-raising; idam = this - in this way; niHsaadhvasam = impudently; pra uktam = verily, said - pertly replied me.
" 'You all have not only transgressed my word, but pertly replied me in an impudent manner which is abhorrent and hair-raising, and recriminatory according to probity. [1-62-16]
श्व मांस भोजिनः सर्वे वासिष्ठा इव जातिषु |
पूर्णम् वर्ष सहस्रम् तु पृथिव्याम् अनुवत्स्यथ || १-६२-१७
17. sarve = you all; shva maamsa bhojinaH = dog's, meat, while subsisting on; puurNam varSa sahasram tu = complete, for years, thousand, but; pR^ithivyaam = on earth; vaasiSThaa iva = Vashishta's [sons,] like; jaatiSu = in race of [Mustika-s]; anuvatsyatha = whirl around.
" 'You all will be whirling around the earth totally for a thousand years taking birth in the race that subsists on dog's meat, like the sons of Vashishta.' Thus Vishvamitra cursed his sons. [1-62-17]
कृत्वा शाप समायुक्तान् पुत्रान् मुनिवरः तदा |
शुनःशेपम् उवाच आर्तम् कृत्वा रक्षाम् निरामयाम् || १-६२-१८
18. muni varaH = saint, the best; putraan shaapa samaayuktaan = sons, curse, bounden by; kR^itvaa = on making - on cursing; tadaa = then; niraamayaam rakSaam kR^itvaa = unharmed, invulnerability, on making; aartam shunaHshepam uvaaca = pitiable one, to Shunashepa, spoke.
"On making his sons bounden by curse, then that best saint spoke to the pitiable Shunashepa, on making unharmed invulnerability to him with sanctifying hymns. [1-62-18]
पवित्र पाशैर् बद्धो रक्त माल्य अनुलेपनः |
वैष्णवम् यूपम् आसाद्य वाग्भिः अग्निम् उदाहर || १-६२-१९
19. vaiSNavam yuupam aasaadya = Vishnu's, sacrificial post, on attaining [when you are fastened]; pavitra paashaiH baddhaH = by sacred, fastener, when fastened; rakta maalya anulepanaH = with red, garlands, smeared with [red] paste; such as you are you; vaagbhiH = with word [with hymns I am going to tell]; agnim udaahara = to Fire-god, you address [you praise him.]
" 'When you are fastened with sacred fastener to the sacrificial post of Vishnu, smeared with red paste and garlanded with red garlands, you praisefully address the Fire-god with the words I going to impart to you in Vedic hymns. [1-62-19]
इमे च गाथे द्वे दिव्ये गायेथा मुनि पुत्रक |
अंबरीषस्य यज्ञे अस्मिन् ततः सिद्धिम् अवाप्स्यसि || १-६२-२०
20. muni putraka = oh, saint's, son; ambariiSasya asmin yaj~ne = in of Ambariisha, in that, Vedic-ritual; ime dve divye gaathe = these, two, divine, songs [hymns]; gaayethaa = be sung [ chanted]; tataH siddhim avaapsyasi = then, aspiration, you will obtain.
" 'These two divine hymns, oh, son of saint, shall be chanted in the Vedic-ritual of Ambariisha, then you will obtain your aspiration.' Thus Vishvamitra taught two Vedic hymns to the boy. [1-62-20]
शुनःशेपो गृहीत्वा ते द्वे गाथे सुसमाहितः |
त्वरया राज सिंहम् तम् अंबरीषम् उवाच ह || १-६२-२१
21. shunaHshepaH = Shunashepa; su samaahitaH = very, attentively; te dve gaathe gR^ihiitvaa = those, two, hymns, having taken; raaja simham = to king, the lion; tam ambariiSam = to him, to Ambariisha; tvarayaa [gatvaa] = instantly [on going to]; uvaaca ha = spoke, indeed.
"Shunashepa having taken those two hymns from Vishvamitra very attentively has instantly gone to that lion-king Ambariisha and indeed spoke to him. [1-62-21]
राज सिंह महाबुद्धे शीघ्रम् गच्छावहे वयम् |
निवर्तयस्व राजेन्द्र दीक्षाम् च समुदाहर || १-६२-२२
22. mahaabuddhe = oh, highly intellectual one; raaja simha = king, the lion; [sadaH = to your ritual place]; vayam shiighram gacChaavahe = we, promptly, go to; raajendra = oh, king the best; diikSaam nivartayasva = pledge, apply yourself to; [iti = this way]; samudaahara = said.
" 'Oh, king the lion, let us go promptly to your ritual place, oh, best king, you may apply yourself to your pledge in completing the ritual, with me as its sacrificial animal,' thus the boy said. [1-62-22]
तत् वाक्यम् ऋषि पुत्रस्य श्रुत्वा हर्ष समन्वितः |
जगाम नृपतिः शीघ्रम् यज्ञ वाटम् अतन्द्रितः || १-६२-२३
23. nR^ipatiH = king; R^iSi putrasya tat vaakyam shrutvaa = of sage, son's, that, sentence, on listening; harSa samanvitaH = , gladness, along with [gladdened]; a tandritaH = not, lazily - spiritedly; yaj~na vaaTam = to ritual, shed [hall]; shiighram jagaama = immediately, proceeded.
"On listening that sentence of the son of sage, the king Ambariisha is gladdened and proceeded to the ritual hall immediately and spiritedly. [1-62-23]
सदस्य अनुमते राजा पवित्र कृत लक्षणम् |
पशुम् रक्त अंबरम् कृत्वा यूपे तम् समबन्धयत् || १-६२-२४
24. raajaa = king; sadasya anumate = officiators', by permission of; tam = him [Shunashepa]; pavitra kR^ita lakSaNam = sanctity, prepared, with features [got the boy is prepared with bodily features of sanctity]; rakta ambaram pashum = with red, cloth, as ritual animal; kR^itvaa = made [clad him in red clothes]; yuupe sam abandhayat = to sacrificial post, securely fastened.
"The king with the permission of officiators of ritual got the boy prepared as a ritual animal with sanctified bodily features and clad him in red clothes and got him securely fastened to the sacrificial post. [1-62-24]
स बद्धो वाग्भिः अग्र्याभिः अभितुष्टाव वै सुरौ |
इन्द्रम् इन्द्र अनुजम् चैव यथावत् मुनि पुत्रकः || १-६२-२५
25. baddhaH saH muni putrakaH = when tied, he, saint's, son - Shunashepa; indram = Indra; indra anujam caiva = Indra's, brother [Upendra,] as well as; surau = these two gods; agryaabhiH = with superior ones; vaagbhiH = with words [two hymns]; yathaavat = as per [scriptures]; abhituSTaava vai = highly pleased, indeed.
"When Shunashepa is tied to ritual post he immensely pleased two gods, namely Indra and Upendra as well, with those two hymns he got from Vishvamitra. [1-62-25]
ततः प्रीतः सहस्र अक्षो रहस्य स्तुति तोषितः |
दीर्घम् आयुः तदा प्रादात् शुनःशेपाय राघव || १-६२-२६
26. raaghava = oh, Raghava; tataH = then; rahasya stuti toSitaH = esoteric, by laudation, who is satisfied; sahasra akSaH = thousand, eyed god Indra; priitaH = is gladdened; tadaa = then; shunaHshepaaya = for Shunashepa; diirgham aayuH praadaat = long, life [longevity,] bestowed.
"Then the Thousand-eyed Indra who is satisfied with esoteric laudation is gladdened, and oh, Raghava, then he bestowed longevity to Shunashepa. [1-62-26]
स च राजा नरश्रेष्ठ यज्ञस्य च समाप्तवान् |
फलम् बहु गुणम् राम सहस्राक्ष प्रसादजम् || १-६२-२७
27. narashreSTha = oh, best one among men, Rama; raama = oh, Rama; saH raajaa ca = he, that king, also; sahasraakSa prasaada jam = Thousand-eyed Indra's, grace, caused by; bahu guNam = many, fold; yaj~nasya phalam ca sam aaptavaan = Vedic-ritual, fruits of, also, well, obtained.
"Oh, Rama, the best one among men, he that king Ambariisha also obtained the fruits of that Vedic-ritual in manyfold, resulted from the grace of Thousand-eyed Indra. [1-62-27]
विश्वामित्रो अपि धर्मात्मा भूयः तेपे महातपाः |
पुष्करेषु नरश्रेष्ठ दश वर्ष शतानि च || १-६२-२८
28. narashreSTha = oh, best one among men Rama; dharmaatmaa = virtue-soled sage; mahaa tapaaH = great ascetic; vishvaamitraH api = Vishvamitra, even; puSkareSu = at Holy place; dasha varSa shataani ca = ten, years, hundred, also; bhuuyaH tepe = again, performed ascesis.
"Oh, Rama, the best among men, even the virtue-souled great ascetic Vishvamitra again performed ascesis at the same Holy lakeside for another thousand years." Thus Sage Shataananda continued the narration of Vishvamitra's legend. [1-62-28]
इति वाल्मीकि रामायणे आदि काव्ये बाल काण्डे द्वि षष्टितमः सर्गः
© Mar, 2003, Desiraju Hanumanta Rao [Revised : December 04]