Story of Bhima and Hanuman—Part 3

Hanuman recounts the story of Rama.

In the last issue, we saw that Bhima started lifting the monkey’s tail. In his mind, Bhima thought that he would grab the tail of the weak and sick monkey and send him to Yama’s abode. Smiling sarcastically, Bhima tried to lift the tail with his left hand, but try as he would he could not move the tail an inch. He then tried to move it with both his hands and was still unsuccessful. Bhima started perspiring profusely, his eyebrows moved high into his forehead and his eyes became red with anger. He tried with all his strength, yet the tail was unmoved.

Bhima was suddenly overcome with shame and stood helplessly in front of the monkey. He folded his palms and bowing to the monkey said, “O foremost among monkeys, please be happy. Please forgive me for the harsh words I spoke to you. With the intention of knowing your true form, I beg you to tell me who you really are. I am your disciple and I surrender to you.

The monkey who was Hanuman said, “O destroyer of enemies, O son of Pandu, you want to know my reality then please listen carefully. I was born through the womb of the wife of the monkey called Kesari and begotten by the wind or vayu, the symbol of the age of the universe. I am the monkey called Hanuman. All the great monkeys paid homage to two lords, one was the son of the Sun god called Sugriva and the other, the son of Indra called Vali, but I had a special love for Sugriva.

For some reason Vali forcibly made Sugriva leave the monkey kingdom and so both of us started living on the top of the mountain called Rushyamukha. At the same time, the son of Dashratha, the king of Ayodhya, walked upon the earth. He was the best among archers, not only strong and powerful but he was the essence of Lord Vishnu in human form. To please and obey his father, Lord Rama, together with his wife Sita and younger brother Laxman, were staying in the forest called the Dandakaranya. The king of the demons, Ravana, was enamoured by Rama’s wife and using cunningness and deceit, he kidnapped her. Ravana had taken the help of the demon called Mareecha who assumed the form of a golden deer studded with precious stones. He lured Rama away while Ravana kidnapped Sita.

On realising that someone had taken away his wife, Rama, together with Laxman, started looking for her all over the forest and on the mountain top Rama saw Sugriva. Rama and Sugriva became friends and Rama killed Vali and made Sugriva the king of all the monkeys. Once he became king, Sugriva sent thousands of monkeys in all directions to look for Sita and I was one of them and went South. At that time the great eagle called Sampati told me that Sita had been taken by Ravana and was across the sea in his kingdom called Lanka.