Seetha recollects the time limit of two months given by Ravana and her vulnerability of being killed by him. After lamenting for a while, she tries to strangle herself to death with the braid of her hair. At that moment, a propitious omen never seen before appears on her person.
sā rākṣasendrasya vaco niśamya |
sītā vitatrāsa yathā vanānte |
siṃhābhipannā gajarājakanyā || 5-28-1
1. saa siitaa = that Seetha; nishamya = hearing; tat = those; apriyam = unpleasant; vachaH = words; raavaNasya = of Ravana; apriyaartaa = tormented by grief; apriyaartaa = tormented by grief; vitatraasa = was frightened; gajaraajakanyaa yathaa = like a tiny female-elephant; simhaabhipannaa = over powered by a lion; vanaante = in the middle of a forest.
That Seetha, hearing those unpleasant words of Ravana, tormented by grief, was frightened like a tiny female-elephant overpowered by a lion in the middle of a forest.
sā rākṣasīmadhyagatā ca bhīru |
rvāgbhirbhṛśaṃ rāvaṇatarjitā ca |
kāntāramadhye vijane visṛṣṭā |
bāleva kanyā vilalāpa sītā || 5-28-2
2. saa siitaa = that Seetha; bhiiruH = who was fearful; raakSasii madhyagataa = who was situated in the middle of female-demons; raavaNatayitaacha = and threatened by Ravana; vaagbhiH = with his words; bhR^isham = galore; vilapaapa = lamented; baalaakanyaa iva = like a young virgin; visR^iSTaa = who was left; vijane = lonely; kaantaara madhye = in the midst of a forest.
That fearful Seetha, who was situated in the middle of female-demons and also threatened by Ravana with his words galore, lamented (as follows) like a young virgin who was left lonely in the midst of a forest.
satyaṃ batedaṃ pravadanti loke |
nākālamṛtyurbhavatīti santaḥ |
yatrāhamevaṃ paribhartsyamānā |
jīvāmi dīnā kṣaṇamapyapuṇyā || 5-28-3
3. aham = I; apuNyaa = the impure; yatra = for which reason; paribhartyamaanaa = I was threatened; evam = in this way; jiivaani = am surviving; kSaNamapi = even for an instant; diinaa = miserably; idam = this word; pravadanti = spoken; santaH = by saints; satyam = is true; akaalamR^ityuH = "untimely death; na bhavati = does not come; loke = in this world"; bata = how difficult!.
"Truly the saints affirm that untimely death does not come in the world, as I being impure am surviving even for an instant, though being threatened in this way."
sukhādvihīnaṃ bahuduḥkhapūrṇa |
midaṃ tu nūnaṃ hṛdayaṃ sthiraṃ me |
viśīryate yanna sahasradhādya |
vajrāhataṃ śṛṅgamivācalasya || 5-28-4
4. idam = this; me = my hR^idayam = heart; nuunam = is surely; sthiram = hard; yat = for which reason; adya = today; na vishiiryate = (it) is not broken; sahasrathaa = into thousand pieces; achalasya shR^iN^gamiva = as a mountain-top; vajraahatam = struck by lightning.
"Though devoid of happiness and frequently full of sorrow, my heart must be hard indeed, in that it does not break into a thousand pieces today like a mountain-top struck by lightning."
vaivāsti doṣo mama nūnamatra |
bhāvaṃ na cāsyāhamanupradātu |
malaṃ dvijo mantramivādvijāya || 5-28-5
5. naivaasti = there is no; doSaH = fault; mama = of mine; atra = in this matter; aham = I; asmi = have become; vadhyaa = assassinable; asya = to this Ravana; apriya darshanasya = of disagreeable perception; aham = I; na alam = am not able; anupradhaatum = to give; asya = him; bhaavam = (my) affection; mamtramiva = like a mystical verse; advijaaya = to one not belonging to the twice-born classes; dvijaH = by a member of the twice-born class.
"There is no fault of mine in this matter. I have become killable at the hands of this demon of disagreeable perception. I am not able to give him my affection any more than a member of the twice-born classes would offer a mystical verse to one not belonging to the twice-born classes."
nūnaṃ mamāṅgānyacirādanāryaḥ |
śastraiḥ śitai śchetsyati rākṣasendraḥ |
tasminnanāgacchati lokanāthe |
garbhasthajantoriva śalyakṛntaḥ || 5-28-6
6. tasmin = (If) Rama; lokanaathe = the ruler of the world; anaagachchhati = does not come; anaaryaH = the evil; raakSasendraH = king of Demons; nuunam = surely; chhetsyati = will cut off; mama = my; aNgaani = limbs; shitaiH = with shapened; shastraiH = weapons; shalya kR^intaH iva = like a surgeon; garbhasthajantoH = a (lifeless) feotus situated in the womb.
"If Rama the Ruler of the world does not come here, the evil Ravana, the king of Demons will cut off my limbs with his sharpened weapons, even as a surgeon would cut the limbs of a lifeless feotus."
duḥkhaṃ batedaṃ mama duḥkhitāyā |
māsau cirāyādhigamiṣyato dvau |
baddhasya vadhyasya tathā niśānte |
rājāparādhādiva taskarasya || 5-28-7
7. mama = to me; duHkhitaayaaH = lamenting; dvau = two; maasau = mouths; adhigamiSyataH = will go upto; chiraaya = a long time; nishaante iva = as at the end of a night; taskarasya = a thief; baddhhasya = imprisoned; vadhyasya = and to be capitally punished; raajaaparaadhaat = under the detention orders of a king; (passes away in the instant case); bata = Alas! Idam = this; duHkham = is painful.
"To me lamenting, two months will go up to a long time, as at the end of a night a thief imprisoned and to be capitally punished under the detention orders of a king. Alas! This is painful."
hā rāma hā lakṣmaṇa hā sumitre |
hā rāmamātaḥ saha me jananyā |
eṣā vipadyāmyahamalpabhāgyā |
mahārṇave nauriva mūḍhavātā || 5-28-8
8. haa raama = O; Rama; haa lakSmaNa = O; Lakshmana; haa sumitraa = O; Sumitra; haa raama maataH = O; Kausalya; me jananyaa saha = together with my mother; eSaa = this; aham = I; alpabhagyaa = of scanty fortune; vipadyaami = am going to be destroyed; nauriva = like a ship; muuDha vaataa = driven out of its course by a strong wind; mahaarNave = in a mighty ocean.
"O Rama, O Lakshmana, O Sumitra, O Kausalya! O mother! I, of a scanty fortune, am going to be destroyed, like a ship driven out of its course by a strong wind in a mighty ocean."
tarasvinau dhārayatā mṛgasya |
sattvena rūpaṃ manujendraputrau |
nūnaṃ viśastau mama kāraṇāttau |
siṃharṣabhau dvāviva vaidyutena || 5-28-9
9. sattvena = by a being; dhaarayataa = who had possessed; ruupam = the form; mR^igasya = of a deer; tau = those two; manujendra putrau = sons of Dasaratha; tarasvinau = the energetic one; nuunam = were surely; vishastau = killed; mama kaaraNaat = for my sake; dvau simharSabhau iva = as two excellent lions; (killed); vaidyutena = by a flashing thunder bolt.
"In the disguise of a deer, those two energetic sons of Dasaratha were surely killed for my sake, as two excellent lions killed by a flashing thunderbolt."
nūnaṃ sa kālo mṛgarūpadhārī |
māmalpabhāgyāṃ lulubhe tadānīm |
yatrāryaputraṃ visasarja mūḍhā |
rāmānujaṃ lakṣmaṇapūrvajaṃ ca || 5-28-10
10. nuunam = certainly; saH = that; kaalaH = Time-spirit; mR^igaruupadhaarii = assuming the guise of a deer; lulubhe = allured; maam = me; alpabhaagyaam = having a poor fortune; yatra = at which time; muuDhaa = I; a stupid woman; visasarja = sent forth; raamaanujam = Lakshmana; aaryaputramcha = and the noble prince; lakSmaNa puurvajam = Rama the elder brother of Lakshmana.
"Certainly that Time-spirit, assuming the guise of a deer, allured me, a woman of poor fortune at that time and to whom I, a stupid woman, sent forth (far away) Lakshmana and the noble prince Rama the elder brother of Lakshmana."
hā rāma satyavrata dīrghabāho |
hā pūrṇacandrapratimānavaktra |
hā jīvalokasya hitaḥ priyaśca |
vadhyāṃ na māṃ vetsi hi rākṣasānām || 5-28-11
11. haa raama = O Rama; satyavrata = the strictly truthful man; diirgha baaho = the long-armed; haa puurNa chandra ratimaana vaktra = O the man whose face resembles the full-moon; haa = Alas!; hitaH = (you) who are well-disposed; jiivalokasya = of the world of living beings! Na vetsi hi = do not indeed know; maam = me; vadhyaam = to have been sentenced to dealth; raakSasaam = by the demons.
"O Rama, the strictly truthful man and the long-armed, O the man whose face resembles the full-moon! You, who are well-disposed of the world of living beings, do not indeed know me to have been sentenced to death by the demons."
ananyadaivatvamiyaṃ kṣamā ca |
bhūmau ca śayyā niyamaśca dharme |
pativratātvaṃ viphalaṃ mamedam |
kṛtaṃ kṛtaghneṣviva mānuṣāṇām || 5-28-12
12. anayadaivatvam = (My) not having a deity (other than my husband); iyam = this; kSamaacha = patience; shayyaa = my reposing; bhuumau = on the floor; niyamashcha = my restriction; dharma = in righteousness; mama = my; pativrataatvam = devotion to the husband; idam = all this; viphalam = has become a waste; manuSyaaNaam kR^itamiva = like a good act done by men; kR^itaghneSu = to ungrateful men.
"My not having a deity (other than my husband), this patience, my reposing on the floor, my restriction in righteousness, my devotion to the husband - all this has become a waste, like a good act done by men to ungrateful men becoming waste".
mogho hi dharmaścarito mayāyaṃ |
tathaikapatnītvamidaṃ nirartham |
yā tvāṃ na paśyāmi kṛśā vivarṇā |
hīnā tvayā saṃgamane nirāśā || 5-28-13
13. yaa = I that person who; na pashyaami = is not seeing; tvaam = you; niraashaa = and who is not hopeful; sangamane = of coming into contact with you; kR^ishaa = who is emaciated; vivarNaa = and pale in complexion; ayam = this; dharmaH = righteous act; charitaH = performed; mayaa = by me; moghaH his = has indeed become a waste; tathaa = likewise; idam = this wife to you; nirartham = has become useless.
"For me who is not seeing you, who is bereft of you, who is not hopeful of coming into contact with you, who is emaciated and pale in complexion this righteous act performed by me has indeed become a waste. Likewise, this state of my being only one wife to you has become useless.."
piturnideśaṃ niyamena kṛtvā vanānnivṛttaścaritavrataśca |
strībhistu manye vipulekṣaṇābhistvaṃ raṃsyase vītabhayaḥ kṛtārthaḥ || 5-28-14
14. kR^itvaa = having fulfilled; pituH = your father's nidesham = command; niyamena = as per the order of his words; charita vratashcha = and observed you vow; nivR^ittaH = you return; vanaat = from the forest; vita bhayaH = fearlessly; kR^itaarthaH = and having accomplished your purpose; manye = I think; ramsyase = you will enjoy carnally; vipulekSaNaabhiH = with large-eyed; striibhiH = women.
"Having fulfilled your father's command as per the order of his words and observed your vow, you return from the forest fearlessly and having accomplished your purpose, I think you will enjoy carnally with large-eyed women."
ahaṃ tu rāma tvayi jātakāmā ciraṃ vināśāya nibaddhabhāvā |
moghaṃ caritvātha tapo vratañca tyakṣyāmi dhigjīvitamalpabhāgyām || 5-28-15
15. raama = O Rama!; charitvaa = having performed; tapaH = austerity; vratamcha = and vow; mogham = in vain; aham tu = I for myself; nibaddha bhaavaa = in whose was confined an affection for you; with jaalakaamaa = and who has fallen in love; tvayi = with you; chiram = for a long time; vinaashaaya = for (my own) destruction; tyakSyaami = I can lose; jaivitam = my life; dhik = woe to me; alpa bhaagyaam = of my little fortune!.
"O Rama! Having performed austerity and vow in vain, I for myself who has fallen in love with you and in whose was confined an affection for you for a long time, for my own destruction, I can lose my life. Woe to me of my little fortune!"
sā jīvitaṃ kṣipramahaṃ tyajeyaṃ |
viṣeṇa śastreṇa śitena vāpi |
viṣasya dātā na hi me.asti kaści |
cchastrasya vā veśmani rākṣasasya || 5-28-16
16. saa aham = I as such; kSipram = will quickly; tyajeyam = abandon; jiivitam = my life; viSeNa = by poison; shitena shastreNa vaapi = or by a sharp weapon; me = to me; naasti kashchit = none is there; daataa = who is a giver; viSasya = either of a poison; shastrasyavaa = or of a sharp weapon; veshmani = in the house; raakSasasya = of Ravana (a demon).
"I as such will abandon quickly my life by poison or by a sharp weapon. To me, none is there, who is a giver either of a poison or of a sharp weapon in the house of Ravana."
itīva devī bahudhā vilapya |
sarvātmanā rāmamanusmarantī |
pravepamānā pariśuṣkavaktrā |
nagottamaṃ puṣpitamāsasāda || 5-28-17
17. itiiva = thus; vilapya = lamenting; bahudhaa = in several ways; devii = Seetha; anusmarantii = was recollecting; raamam = Rama; sarvaatmanaa = in all spirits; pravepamaanaa = and trembling; parishuSkavaktraa = with a dried-up face; aasasaada = approached; nagottamam = that excellent trees; puSpitam = in bloom.
Thus lamenting in several ways, Seetha was recollecting Rama in all spirits and trembling with and emaciated face, approached that excellent tree in bloom.
sā śokataptā bahudhā vicintya |
sītātha veṇyudgrathanaṃ gṛhītvā |
udbhudhya veṇyudgrathanena śrīghra |
mahaṃ gamiṣyāmi yamasya mūlam || 5-28-18
18. shiitaa = Seetha; shokabhitaptaa = who was tormented with grief; vichintya = thinking (thus); bahudhaa = in various ways; gR^ihiitvaa = holding; atha = and thereafter; veNyudgrathanam = her braid of hair looking like a hanging rope; (now thought within herself); aham = "I; gamiSyaami = shall go; yamsya muulam = to the presence of Yama the God of Death; udbadhya = by tying my neck; shiigram = quickly; veNyugrathanena = with my braid of hair looking
Seetha, who was tormented with grief, thus thinking in various ways and thereafter holding her braid of hair looking like a hanging rope (now thought within herself) "I shall go to the presence of Yama the God of Death by tying my neck quickly with my braid of hair looking like a hanging rope"
upasthitā sā mṛdusarvagātrī |
śākhāṃ gṛhītvātha nagasya tasya |
tasyāstu rāmaṃ pravicintayantyā |
rāmānujaṃ svaṃ ca kulaṃ śubhāṅgyāḥ || 5-28-19
śokānimittāni tathā bahūni |
dhairyārjitāni pravarāṇi loke |
prādurnimittāni tadā babhūvuḥ |
purāpi siddhānyupalakṣitāni || 5-28-20
19; 20. atha = thereafter; saa = that Seetha; mR^idu sarvaagatrii = with all her soft limbs; upashitaa = stood; yR^ihiitvaa = seizing; shaakhaam = a branch; tasya nagasya = of that tree; tasyaaH tu = to her; shubhaaNgyaaH = having handsome limbs; pravichintayantyaaH = who was thinking; raamam = of Rama; raamaanujam = Lakshmana; svam kulamcha = her own race; praadarbabhuuvuH = appeared; tadaa = then; bahuuni = many; nimittaani = omens; shokaanimittaani = not having adequate occasion for grief; dhairyaa rjitaani = which procured courage; loke = in the world; pravaraaNi = which were excellent; tathaa = and upalakSitaani = which were seen; puraapi = earlier also; siddhaani = as thoroughly efficacious.
Thereafter Seetha with all her soft limbs stood seizing a branch of that tree. To her having handsome limbs, who was thinking of Rama, Lakshmana and her own race, then appeared many omens, which were not having adequate occasion for grief, which procured courage in the world, which were excellent and which were seen earlier also as thoroughly efficacious.
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ityārṣte śrīmadrāmāyaṇe ādikāvye sundarakāṇḍe aṣṭāviṃśaḥ sargaḥ
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© August, 2005, K. M. K. Murthy