Valmiki Ramayana - Kishkindha Kanda in Prose
Sarga 29

Sugreeva on his enthronement and gaining an interval of rainy reason, lapses into lavish enjoyment of sensual pleasures. His indulgence becomes overindulgence and makes him to forget his promise-oriented duty to search for Seetha. As an intelligent minister, Hanuma approaches Sugreeva and enlightens Sugreeva about his duty for the requital of help rendered by Rama. Ordering Niila, a commander of monkey forces, for foregathering all monkey troops within fifteen days, Sugreeva re-enters his palace-chambers, dragged by his sensual pleasures.

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On observing clear sky on which back-clouds and electric charges have disappeared, on which Saarasa birds are vibrantly bustling and delightful moonshine is coated, and even on observing him whose riches are abundant, who has slowed down in accumulating probity and prosperity from the viewpoint of rectitude, highly engrossed in the course of unvirtuous profligates, whose heart is given to undisturbed privacy, and the one who on achieving his goals and dearest longings has turned away from other pursuits, who regained his choicest wife, and gained highly covetable Lady Tara, thus, who is always indulged in females, merrymaking day in and day out on a par with Indra, which Indra will be sporting with the cohorts of gandharva and apsara females, thereby he who is making much of his fortune on getting rid of other problems, besides, he who reposed the activity of kingdom in his ministers, yet, who does not make eyes at those ministers as he is doubtless of the kingdom which was once disrupted from his control, because, that kingdom is looked after well by the very same ministers, as such he is wallowing in promiscuity, such as he is, seeking the presence of such a Sugreeva, king of monkeys and an explicator, and even on winning his grace, he who is forthright regarding norms of ethics, an exceptional knower of subtleties of transactions and the rubrics of duty and time, that golden-tongued Hanuma, the son of Air-god, spoke sweet words that are reasonable, heart-pleasing, beneficial, pragmatic, profitable, impressive, immaculate, imperative, and impartial, and which words are also inclusive of care and concern of Hanuma, on making a determination with a belief that Sugreeva will pay heed to his words.

"Acquired is the kingdom and glory as well, thus enriched is your dynastic prosperity, but foregathering friends is still remaining, and it will be apt of you to negotiate it. Indeed, he who really conducts himself punctually and amicably with friends, his kingdom, glory and valour will flourish.

"Matchless kingdom is his who can keep his treasury, army, friends and his own sovereignty - all these four, in equiponderance. Therefore, as the one with straightforward actions firstly you resort to an unimperilled course of action, lest any peril is imminent, and it will be apt of you to dutifully achieve the purpose of your friend Rama, for which alone Rama along with Lakshmana came to you, thus let your power preponderate. Adversity thwarts him who comports himself with overenthusiasm only in self-indulgences, and who does not expeditiously strive for the sake of his friend leaving off all other activities of self-indulgence.

Here Hanuma is indirectly reprimanding Sugreeva for his lascivious way of living forgetting Rama's work. This can be said this way also in a general tone: "No misfortune can constrain him who strives enthusiastically and expeditiously for his friend's mission." But Hanuma's dutifulness is to be kept in view.

"One who belatedly functions for the present mission of his friend, he will indeed be unassociated with that mission, despite of the fact that he has once performed great deeds in respect of the same friend. Hence, the task of our friend is delayed, oh, enemy-destroyer, searching for Vaidehi is Raghava's mission and let it be done. Though the time is lagging, oh, king, that insightful and punctual Rama is not indicating about it to you, though he is hurrying to complete his mission within a time-frame, because he is following you alone abiding under the control of your promise.

"Raghava is the cause for augmentation of multitudes, a long-lasting covenentor, and even an undefinable one in his proficiency, and an unparalleled one by his grace.

The 'augmenter of multitudes of homogeneous groups...' is not limited to Rama's Ikshvaku dynasty or to the monkey race, or to birds like Jatayu, or to squirrels or bears. Rama is the causer of the augmentation of any living being's group, if they tread the path of virtuousness, thus he is the sustainer of universe in peace. Any violator to that peaceful coexistence will be put to an end, may it be Viradha, Kabandha, Vali or Ravana.

"Certainly you have to carry through his mission as he has carried out your mission previously, and oh, lord of monkeys, it will be apt of you to summon worthy monkeys for searching Seetha. As long as Rama is not going to prod us for action deem that there is no time lapse, but the minute he does deem it as lapsed.

"You are a helpful one even to those that are unhelpful to you, oh, king of monkeys, then why repeat about him who helped you in getting your kingdom, and even in killing your enemy, Vali.


"Even if Rama did not help you in getting your kingdom and killing Vali you have to render your help to Rama, for you are a beacon of friendship and you are a helpful one without seeking any requital... then why you are delaying.

A true friendship does not require barters. A timely help is the only virtue of true friendship, and thankless friends will neglect it: anena kR^ita upakaarasya guNaaDhyasya kaaryam kaala anatikrameNa sarva prakaareNa api saadhaniiyam | adharmiShTsya tu mitra kaaryam upekShaNiiyam iti suucitam | dk

"Highly adventurous and powerful vanara as you are, oh, lord of multitudes of monkeys and bears, why do you really temporise in issuing orders to fulfil the cherish of Rama. If need be Rama of Dasharatha is really capable of keeping gods, demons and great-vipers under his control with his arrows, but he is anticipating fulfilment of your promise. He fulfilled an exceptional cherish of yours without much doubting for the forfeiture of his own life, hence we search for his wife Vaidehi anywhere on earth or even on skies.

"Gods cannot cause dismay to him, then gandharva-s - no; multitudes of wind-gods - no; asura-s - no; yaksha-s - no; and then wherefore the raakshasa-s can? Therefore, oh, lord of monkeys, that Rama is energetic to exert himself, but he fulfilled your aspiration earlier, and it will be apt of you requite him with his aspiration at all events.

"In case you were ordering us, oh, king of monkeys, among us whosoever he may be his impetus will be unhampered either in netherworlds, or in water, or up above on the sky. Therefore command us, oh, merited one, as you have more than ten million unchallengeable monkeys under your command, as to who should start from where and for which purpose, and as to how one should exert himself." Thus Hanuma appealed to Sugreeva.

On hearing the words of Hanuma that are validly demonstrated on time, Sugreeva whose soldiery is substantial, took a noble decision. And the noble minded Sugreeva directed Nila, one of the commanders of vanara army, and who always strives to foregather vanara army, to foregather all of the monkey-forces available in all the directions.

"You have to have organise that way as to how my army in its entirety and from all over, together with corps commanders, is to be marshalled to stay in the cutting edge of army. Those that are the quickstepped, venturesome fly-jumpers who are the defenders on the perimeter of army, they shall be fetched quickly an speedily at my order, and oh, Niila, you on your own have to personally and closely monitor the military establishment without any heterogeneity.

"And, the monkey who arrives here after fifteen nights, to him termination of life is the punishment, there is no business for further adjudication.

"Associated with Angada you shall approach elderly monkeys like Jambavanta and others, according to my decision and authorised by my order." Thus, Sugreeva, the king of best monkeys on assigning the set-up, and ordering Niila, the Commander of Vanara Forces, that glorious Sugreeva re-entered his palace-chambers. [

Here it is said that Sugreeva re-entered his palace-chambers. This is due to the impulsive nature towards his sensual gratifications. He should have realised that he shall approach Rama to report the arrangements made, or at least he should have asked Hanuma to inform Rama about these orders to Niila. Without doing either of them, he re-entered the palace-chambers by which Hanuma has landed into a dilemma. Hanuma cannot go to Rama on his own for he is a minister of Sugreeva and inform about the orders of Sugreeva to Niila without the permission of the king, namely Sugreeva, nor as a minister, he can persuade Sugreeva to go to Rama to report the actions taken by monkey forces to search Seetha. In reality, monkey forces are being gathered, but that information is not passed on to Rama. This communication gap creates a furious emotion in Rama and he bids Lakshmana to go to Kishkindha and take Sugreeva to task, and even Lakshmana jumps on Sugreeva like a firebrand, in the coming chapters.

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Thus, this is the 29th chapter in Kishkindha Kanda of Valmiki Ramayana, the First Epic poem of India.

© 2002, Desiraju Hanumanta Rao [Revised : August 04

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