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Chapter 55: Ravana Shows Sita His Palace

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Ravana Shows Sita His Palace

Summary

Ravana entices Seetha to marry him by demonstrating various luxuries and comforts, and even baiting her to become his empress. The words of Ravana have some latent meanings as derived by ancient commentators and they are included here, as far as possible.

Chapter [Sarga] 55 in Detail

samdishya raaksasaan ghoraan raavano astau mahaabalaan |

aatmaanam buddhi vaiklavyaat krita krityam amanyata || 3-55-1

On directing those eight ghastly demons Ravana is amused in his heart of hearts that he has accomplished a great feat. [3-55-1]

sa cintayaano vaidehiim kaama baana sa.mprapiiditah |

pravivesha griham ramyam siitaam drastum abhitvaran || 3-55-2

On continually musing upon Vaidehi Ravana is tormented with the arrows of Love-god, thereby to lay eyes on Seetha he post-hastily entered the beautiful palace. [3-55-2]

sa pravishya tu tat veshma raavano raaksasa adhipah |

apashyat raaksasii madhye siitaam duhkha paraayanam || 3-55-3

On entering the palace-chamber that supremo of demons beheld Seetha overwhelmed with ruefulness amongst demoness. [3-55-3]

ashru puurna mukhiim diinaam shoka bhaara avapiiditaam |

vaayu vegaih iva aakraa.ntaam majjantiim naavam ar.hnave || 3-55-4

mriga yuutha paribhrastaam mrigiim shvabhih iva aavritaam |

adhogata mukhiim siitaam taam abhyetya nishaacarah || 3-55-5

taam tu shoka vashaat diinaam avashaam raaksasa adhipah |

sa balaat darshayaamaasa griham deva griha upamam || 3-55-6

She whose visage [appearance] is brimming over with tears, one browbeaten and downtrodden with the burden of bewail, one capsized like a boat that is about to capsize in an ocean spread eagled with whirlwinds, and one alike an impala [a large brownish antelope] altogether swerved from its herd of impala yet hemmed [confined] in with dog-wolves, that nightwalker came nigh of such a Seetha whose face is downcast unwilling to see any, and to such a pitiable Seetha who is in the shackles of her sorrow, that supremo of demons compellingly started to show his palace which is similar to any paradisiacal palace. [3-55-4, 5, 6]

harmya praasaada sa.mbadham strii sahasra nisevitam |

naanaa paksi ganaih justam naanaa ratna samanvitam || 3-55-7

daantakaih taapaniiyaih ca sphaatikai raajataih tathaa |

vajra vaiduurya citraih ca stambhaih dristi manoramaih || 3-55-8

divya dundubhi nir.hghosam tapta kaa.ncana bhuusanam |

That paradisiacal mansion house of Decahedral Ravana is congestive [congested] with innumerable cupolaed [a raised observation post] skyscrapers, adored with thousands of females, frequented by diverse bevies [a large group or collection] of birds, and it comprised of numerous gemstones. The pillars are amazingly gilded with engraving of ivory, gilt, quartz, silvern linocuts, and they are even embossed with diamonds and with lapis gems, which are heart-pleasing for a look. The drumbeats of divine drums are echoing in entire palace, and its archways are adorned with the gildings of pure gold. [3-55-7, 8, 9a]

sopaanam kaa.ncanam citram aaruroha tayaa saha || 3-55-9

daantakaa raajataah caiva gavaaksaah priya darshanaah |

hema jaalaa aavritaah ca aasan tatra praasaada pa.nktayah || 3-55-10

Ravana walked up the wonderful golden staircase along with Seetha, and the rows of skyscrapers with windows that are ivoried [elephants tusk is made of ivory] and silvered and with window-blinds are seen from the windows of the landing on that flight of stairs, which are also ivoried and silvered windows with window-blinds, and all are amusing for sight. [3-55-9b, 10]

sudhaa mani vicitraani bhuumi bhaagaani sarvashah |

dashagriivah sva bhavane praadarshayata maithiliim || 3-55-11

That Decahedral Ravana displayed the multiple stories of his own palace which is all over white-marbled and diamond encrusted to Maithili. [3-55-11]

diirghikaah puskarinyah ca naanaa puspa samaavritaah |

raavano darshayaamaasa siitaam shoka paraayanaam || 3-55-12

Ravana continued to display the descendible wellsprings and leisure pools from which diverse flowers have sprung and overspread them, regardless of Seetha's languishing under her anguish. [3-55-12]

darhshayitvaa tu vaidehiim kritsnam tat bhavana uttamam |

uvaaca vaakyam paapaatmaa siitaam lobhitum icchayaa || 3-55-13

On flaunting his best palace in its entirety to Vaidehi that dirty-minded Ravana spoke this sentence to Seetha in order that she may be tempted on her own, lustily. [3-55-13]

dasha raaksasa kotyah ca dvaavi.mshatih atha aparaah |

var.hjayitvaa jaraa vriddhaan baalaan ca rajaniicaraan || 3-55-14

tesaam prabhuh aham siite sarvesaam bhiima karmanaam |

"Oh, Seetha, ten crores of first-rated demons are there, furthermore, twenty-two crores of demons of ghastly exploits are there, thus all put together, three hundred twenty millions of demons are there in Lanka, omitting the weak, oldish, youngish demons. For all of them I am the lord." Thus Ravana started his self-eulogy. [3-55-14, 15a]

sahasram ekam ekasya mama kaarya purahsaram || 3-55-15

yat idam raajya ta.ntram me tvayi sarvam pratisthitam |

jiivitam ca vishaalaaksi tvam me praanaih gariiyasii || 3-55-16

"For every single work of mine a thousand servitors will rush in. Such as I am I pledge entire life of mine along with the suzerainty of this sovereign city-state Lanka to you, oh, broad-eyed lady, for you are loftier than my lives. [3-55-15b, 16]

bahviinaam uttama striinaam mama yo asau parigrahah |

taasaam tvam iishvarii siite mama bhaaryaa bhava priye || 3-55-17

"Oh, Seetha, you will become an empress for all of the those countless females of finest fabric amassed by me, oh, dear, if only you marry me. [3-55-17]

saadhu kim te anyayaa buddhyaa rocayasva vaco mama |

bhajasva maa abhitaptasya prasaadam kartum ar.hhasi || 3-55-18

"You be keen on my amiable words and it will be apt of you to show compassion on me, for I have burning desire for you, and of what use is your thinking conversely about that long-lost Rama? [3-55-18]

pariksiptaa samudrena la.nkaa iyam shata yojanaa |

na iyam dharhsayitum shakyaa sa indraih api sura asuraih || 3-55-19

"It is impossible to assail this Lanka even for Indra with all of the gods and demons, as an ocean roundly enshrouds this Lanka which is hundred-yojana-s widthwise. [3-55-19]

na devesu na yaksesu na ga.ndharvesu na risisu |

aham pashyaami lokesu yo me viirya samo bhavet || 3-55-20

"I behold none matchable to my vitality is existent among gods; among Yaksha-s - no; among Gandharva-s - no; among sages - no, nor anyone in any world. [3-55-20]

raajya bhrastena diinena taapasena padaatinaa |

kim karisyasi raamena maanusena alpa tejasaa || 3-55-21

"What can you achieve with that dethroned, hapless, seer, vagrant Rama who is short-lived, for after all, he is a human with littlest vitality? [3-55-21]

bhajasva siite maam eva bhartaa aham sadrishah tava |

yauvanam hi adhruvam bhiiru ramasva iha mayaa saha || 3-55-22

"Oh, Seetha, you apotheosize [elevation to divine status] me only for I am your seemliest husband, oh, jumpy lady, indeed, primeness [original] has impermanence [not permanent], thus here you be blithesome [merry] with me. [3-55-22]

darhshane maa krithaah buddhim raaghavasya varaanane |

kaa asya shaktih iha aagantum api siite manorathaih || 3-55-23

"Oh, beautifully visage [appearance] lady, it is needless to have half a mind to see that Raghava, oh, Seetha, even if his wits chariot him what is his caliber to come thither [this place] crossing an un-crossable ocean? [3-55-23]

na shakyo vaayuh aakaashe paashaih baddham mahaajavah |

diipyamaanasya vaa api agneh grahiitum vimalaam shikhaam || 3-55-24

"It is impossible to knot the currents of cyclonic gusts in mid air, more so, it is impracticable to lay hold on the tongues of radiantly irradiant fire. [3-55-24]

trayaanaam api lokaanaam na tam pashyaami shobhane |

vikramena nayet yah tvaam mat baahu paripaalitaam || 3-55-25

"Oh, benefactresses of bliss, he who can lead you back with his valour, while you are being fended off by my mighty arms, him I do not envisage even in any one world of this threefold world. [3-55-25]

la.nkaayaam sumahat raajyam idam tvam anupaalaya |

tvat presyaa mat vidhaa caiva devaah ca api cara acaram || 3-55-26

"You rule over this very great empire of Lanka as an empress of Lanka, while me and mine, also thus all gods like me who hitherto are under my rule and all mobile and sessile entities of whom I am the ruler, they too will hereafter make ourselves useful as your royal stewards, if you marry me. [3-55-26]

abhiseka udaka klinnaa tustaa ca ramayasva maam |

duskritam yat puraa karma vana vaasena tad gatam || 3-55-27

yat ca te sukrito dharmah tasya iha phalam aapnuhi |

"Wet with the waters of anointment you be elated and then delight me. By your damnable dwelling in forests bygone is your bad-luck that you misdealt in bygone times. And what dutiable good deed is to be done by you in marrying me, you do that now, and secure the fruits of that good deed here by marrying me. [3-55-27, 28a]

iha sar.hvaani maalyaani divya ga.ndhaani maithili || 3-55-28

bhuusanaani ca mukhyaani taani seva mayaa saha |

"Oh, Maithili, here all the garlands are divinely fragranced and the jewelry is topmost, you will dress up with them along with me should you become my wife. [3-55-28b]

puspakam naama sushroni bhraatuh vaishravanasya me || 3-55-29

vimaanam suurya sa.nkaasham tarasaa nirjitam rane |

"Oh, well-waist lady, just by my might I notched up an aircraft known as Pushpaka from my brother Kubera in a war with him, which is similar sun in its shine. [3-55-29b. 30a]

vishaalam ramaniiyam ca tat vimaanam mano javam || 3-55-30

tatra siite mayaa saardham viharasva yathaa sukham |

"That aircraft is expansive and exhilarating, also its speed is on par with intuition, oh, Seetha, in that you can cheerfully fly about along with me, should you marry me. [3-55-30b, 31a]

vadanam padma sa.nkaasham vimalam caaru darshanam || 3-55-31

shoka aartam tu varaarohe na bhraajati vara aanane |

"Oh, lady with a comely countenance, your visage is lotus similar in its shine, besides being immaculate, fairish and eyeful, but oh, curvaceous lady, with such a mushily maudlin of such a face this palace of mine is un-bright, thus marry me to brighten everything" Thus Ravana spoke to Seetha. [3-55-31b, 32a]

evam vadati tasmin saa vastra antena vara a.nganaa || 3-55-32

pidhaaya indu nibham siitaa ma.ndam ashruun avartayat |

While Ravana is speaking to her in this way that graceful lady Seetha veiled her moonier face with fringe of her sari, and stiflingly dispelled tears on that mooniest face behind her half-veil. [3-55-32b, 33a]

dhyaayantiim taam iva asvasthaam siitaam ci.ntaa hata prabhaam || 3-55-33

uvaaca vacanam viiro raavano rajanii carah |

To her who is disconcerted and whose anguish marred her brilliance and who is appearing as though pondering over the question of her submittal to Ravana, or otherwise, although she is meditating, to such a Seetha Ravana the nightwalker said these words. [3-55-33b, 34a]

alam vriidena vaidehi dharma lopa kritena te || 3-55-34

aarso ayam devi nisyando yah tvaam abhigamisyati |

"Oh, Vaidehi, enough is this embarrassment of yours presuming that your consorting with me is detrimental to scriptural canons, what that is approaching you in the mode of queen-hood is ordained by gods and it is absolutely traditional. [3-55-34b, 35a]

etau paadau mayaa snigdhau shirobhih paripiiditau || 3-55-35

prasaadam kuru me ksipram vashyo daaso aham asmi te |

"Let these two feet of yours be massaged by my ten heads, do me favor readily, for I am your subordinate and servant. [3-55-35b. 36a]

imaah shuunyaa mayaa vaacah shusyamaanena bhaasitaah || 3-55-36

na ca api raavanah kaa.ncit muurdhnaa striim pranameta ha |

"I with a lustful hollow-heart spoke all these hollow words that are unbefitting to my stature, indeed, Ravana will never supplicate headlong to whosoever woman. [3-55-36b, 36c]

evam uktvaa dashagriivo maithiliim janaka aatmajaam |

krita anta vasham aapanno mama iyam iti manyate || 3-55-37

That Decahedral Ravana on speaking thus to Maithili, who is the daughter of Janaka, deemed that 'she is mine,' as he has gone under the sway of the Terminator. [3-55-37]

iti vaalmiiki raamaayane aadi kaavye aranya kaande pa.nca pa.ncaashah sargah

Thus, this is the 55th chapter in Aranya Kanda of Valmiki Ramayana, the First Epic poem of India.

Sriman Moola Rama Vijayate

 

References

 

Desiraju Hanumanta Rao. (1998). Aranya Kanda - Forest track.

 

Merriam-Webster. (2007). At http://www.m-w.com.

 

Reference.com. (2007). At http://www.reference.com.

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