The Pandavas were to spend six days at Badrikashram. It was near the top of the Gandhamadana Mountain, where they were to meet Arjuna. Early next morning, a cool North Easterly (Ishaan) breeze started blowing through the ashram. The wind brought a lotus flower which shone with light like that of the Sun. It had a thousand petals. Draupadi saw the flower lying on the ground and immediately its divine fragrance intoxicated her. She felt very happy and told Bhimasen, “O son of Pritha, if you really care for me, please bring many more flowers like these.”
Bhima immediately faced the wind and started moving quickly in its direction with the desire to get more of these flowers. Going through forests full of varied animals, flowers, and streams, Bhima reached the top of the mountain. Here he started looking for these lotus flowers. The place was so beautiful and the fragrance from different flowers so captivating that his whole being was filled with joy. The cool breeze was so soothing that it relaxed the effort he had made in climbing the mountain. As he neared a stream, he could hear the sounds of divine damsels dancing. Deer were prancing at the beat of the music. He came upon a forest of banana palms and in the middle there was a beautiful lake. Bhima dived in the lake, swimming and dancing around. He then again started walking along the plateau looking for the flowers.
Bhima then saw a path that led up into the heavens. He took out his conch shell and blew it, creating a deafening roar which shook the whole mountain. It so happened that Hanuman, the great monkey and the elder brother of Bhimasen, was resting in the banana palms. He heard the sound of the shell and knew that Bhima was going to take this path to the heavens. So he sat down in a way that blocked Bhima’s path totally. In this posture he stated banging his tail on the ground. This made a huge sound even greater than the one that had come from Bhima’s shell. Hearing this very loud sound, Bhima was electrified and like a mad elephant, he started moving in the jungle of palms to find out where the sound was coming from.
There in the jungle, sitting on a huge rock, he saw this king of the monkeys. Bhima found it very difficult to look at him as the lustre of his body was flashing like bright lightning. His body seemed very powerful and his two hands were like huge chakras. With one of these huge hands he was cupping his face and stared at Bhimasen. He had a huge tail which ran across Bhima’s path and then curled and went up in the air much above the height of the monkey. Seeing him sitting there in the middle of the palms, Bhima thought he looked like a huge burning fire.
But Bhima had no fear in him and went ahead and stood in front of this great monkey, ready to face him and make his way through.