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Chapter 8: Manthara Turns Kaikeyi Against Rama

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Manthara Turns Kaikeyi Against Rama

Summary

Manthara with her wicked thoughts tries to convince Kaikeyi of the possible misfortune that could occur to Kaikeyi and her family if Sri Rama becomes the King. Although Kaikeyi's initial reaction is to praise Rama's qualities; her mind is slowly but surely poisoned by Manathara's sinful words.

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Chapter [Sarga] 8 in Detail

mantharaa tvabhyasuuyainaamutsrijyaabharanam cha tat|

uvaachedam tato vaakyam kopaduhkhasamanvitaa || 2-8-1

Manthara, becoming indignant with Kaikeyi, threw down the ornament given to her and with anger and distress spoke the following words:

harshham kimidamasthaane kritavatyasi baalishe |

shokasaagaramadhyasthamaatmaanam naavabudhyase || 2-8-2

"O, foolish one! Not knowing that you are in the midst of an ocean of trouble, what is it that you are so delighted about, in a matter to be grieved?"

manasaa prahasaami tvaam devi duhkhaardhitaa satii |

yachchhochitavye hrishhtaasi praapyedam vyasanam mahat || 2-8-3

"Oh, queen! Though stricken with grief, I mentally laugh at you in that you are rejoicing at the time when a great calamity is befalling you."

shochaami durmatitvam te kaa hi praajjnaa praharshhayet |

areh sapatniiputrasya vriddhim mrityumivaagataam || 2-8-4

"I am lamenting over your foolish mind. Does any intelligent woman feel happy over the prosperity of a stepson who is considered an enemy? Does it not amount to praising a befalling death?"

bharataadeva raamasya raajyasaadhaaranaadbhayam |

tadvichintya vishhannaasmi bhaya bhiitaaddhi jaayate || 2-8-5

"Rama has a fear about Bharata because Bharata has equal rights over the kingdom. In thinking about this matter, I am getting anguished. Do we not get disasters from those who are afraid of us?"

lakshmano hi maheshhvaaso raamam sarvaatmanaa gatah |

shatrughnashchaapi bharatam kaakutthsam lakshmano yathaa || 2-8-6

"Lakshmana, wielding a great bow, joined Rama with all his heart. Shatrughna is as faithful to Bharata as Lakshmana to Rama".

pratyaasannakramenaapi bharatastaiva bhaamini |

raajyakramo viprakrishhtastayostaavatkaniiyasoh || 2-8-7

"Oh Kaikeyi! In line with even the proximity of birth; the claim to the throne of Bharata alone can be pressed, that of Lakshmana and Satrughna who are younger is out of question."

vidushhah kshatrachaaritre praajjnasya praaptakaarinah |

bhayaatpravepe raamasya chintayantii tavaatmajam || 2-8-8

"Rama is a learned man and a political statesman. His actions are timely and appropriate. When thinking of your son's calamity to be resulted from Rama, I get shaken with fear".

subhagaa khalu kausalyaa yasyaah putro.abhishhekshyate |

yauvaraajyena mahataa shvah pushhyena dvijottamaih || 2-8-9

"Kausalya is very fortunate. Brahmans are going to anoint her son for the great princely kingdom tomorrow on the day of Pushyami star".

praaptaam sumahatiim priitim pratiitaam taam hatadvishham |

upasthaasyasi kausalyaam daasiivattvam kritaajnjalih || 2-8-10

"With folded arms, as a maid-servant, you have to serve that Kausalya who having reached great prosperity, in the height of joy, will dispose of her adversaries (in the person of Bharata and yourself)".

evam chettvam sahaasmaabhistasyaah preshhya bhavishhyasi |

putrashcha tava raamasya preshhyabhaavam gamishhyati || 2-8-11

"Thus, if you become Kausalya's servant-maid along with us, your son Bharata will be Rama's attendant."

hrishhtaah khalu bhavishhyanti raamasya paramaah striyah |

aprahrishhtaa bhavishhyanti snushhaaste bharatakshaye || 2-8-12

"Rama's wives will get delighted. Your daughters-in-law will be unhappy because of Bharata's waning position."

taam drishhtvaa paramapriitaam bruvantiim mantharaam tatah |

raamasyaiva gunaan devii kaikeyi prashashamsa ha || 2-8-13

Hearing Manthara speak thus in many distasteful words, Kaikeyi began to extol Rama's virtues, saying: -

dharmajjno gurubhirdaantah kritajjna satyavaakchuchi |

raamo raajjnh suto jyeshhtho yauvaraajyamato.arhati || 2-8-14

"Rama knows all righteousness. Elders trained him. He has a proper gratitude. He speaks truth. He has a clean conduct. He is the eldest son of king Dasaratha and hence eligible for the kingdom."

bhraatruunbhrityaamshcha diirghaayuh pitrivatpaalayishhyati |

samtapyase katham kubje shrutvaa raamaabhishhechanam || 2-8-15

"The long living Rama will protect his brothers and servants like a father. O, the hunch backed one! Why are you so pained on hearing about Rama's coronation?"

bharatashchaapi raamasya dhruvam varshhashataatparam |

pitripaitaamaham raajyamavaaptaa purushharshhabhah || 2-8-16

"After Rama's rule for one hundred years, Bharata the best among men will certainly replace Rama on his father's throne, which is that of his ancestors."

saa tvamabhyudaye praapte vartamaane cha manthare |

bhavishhyati cha kalyaane kimartham paritapyase || 2-8-17

"Oh, Manthara! When we got an occasion for rejoicing as at present and when a festive occasion is to come off in future (too in the form of Bharata's installation, no matter even if it comes after a hundred years), why do you feel agonized like this as though burning (with jealousy)?"

yathaa ne bharato maanyastathaa bhuuyo.api raaghaavah |

kausalyaato.ariktam cha so hi shushruushhate hi maam || 2-8-18

"For me, Rama is as lovable as Bharata and even more. Is he not doing more service to me than to Kausalya?"

raajyam yadi hi raamasya bharatasyaapi tattadaa |

manyate hi yathaatmaanam tathaa bhraatruumshcha raaghavah || 2-8-19

"If Rama has kingdom then Bharata has it as well. Rama esteems his brothers just as his own self."

kaikeyiivachanam shrutvaa mantharaa bhrishaduhkhitaa |

diirghamushhnam nihshvasya kaikeyiimidamabraviit || 2-8-20

Manthara, after hearing Kaikeyi's words, felt very sad and after a long and hot sigh, spoke to her the following words:

anarthadarshinii maurkhyaannaatmaanamavabudhyase |

shokavyasanavistiirne majjantii duhkhasaagare || 2-8-21

"On one side, you are getting immersed in an ocean of sorrow filled with misery and danger. But due to stupidity, you are not able to perceive the truth and you fail to assess your real position."

bhavitaa raaghavo raajaa raaghavasyaanu yah sutah |

raajavamshaattu kaikeyi bharatah parihaasyate || 2-8-22

"O, Kaikeyi! If Rama becomes the king, his son will become the king after him in succession. Thus, Bharata's name itself will be removed from the royal clan."

na hi raajjnah sutaah sarve raajye tishhthanti bhaamini |

sthaapyamaaneshhu sarveshhu sumahaananayo bhavet || 2-8-23

"O, Kaikeyi! All the sons of a king will not be crowned for a kingdom. If all are installed, there will be a great lawlessness."

tasmaajjyeshhthe hi kaikeyi raajyatantraani paarthivaah |

sthaapayantyanavadyaagi gunavatsvatareshhvapi || 2-8-24

"Therefore, kings, O, Kaikeyi of faultless limbs, install their eldest son, even though others may be full of virtues, as their successor to the throne."

asaavatyantanirbhagna stavaputro bhavishhyati |

anaathavatsukhebhyashcha raajavamshaachcha vatsale || 2-8-25

"Oh, Kaikeyi the affectionate one! Your son will be completely distant from comforts and even from the royal clan; like an orphan."

saaham tvadarthe sampraaptaa tvam tu maam naavabudhyase |

sapatnivriddau yaa me tvam pradeyam daatumichchisi || 2-8-26

"I came here in your interests. But you have not understood me. You think it fit to give me a present when your step-wife is getting prospered."

dhruvam tu bharatam raamah praapya raajyamakantakam |

deshaantaram vaasayitaa lokaantaramathaapi va || 2-8-27

"Rama, ascending the throne without hindrance, will either send away Bharata to some other country or have him put to death. This is certain."

baala eva hi maatulyam bharato naayitastvayaa |

sannikarshhaachcha sauhaardam jaayate sthaavareshhvapi || 2-8-28

"You sent Bharata to his maternal uncle's house even in his childhood. By being nearer, love is born even on inanimate objects. By sending Bharata to a distant place, you made Dasaratha to have no affection towards him."

bharatasyaanuvashagah shatrughno.api samam gatah |

lakshmano hi yathaa raamam tathaasau bharatam gatah || 2-8-29

"Shatrughna was drawn towards Bharata and went along with him. Just as Lakshmana joined Rama, Shatrughna joined Bharata."

shruuyate hi drumah kashchichchettavyo vanajiivibhih |

sannikarshhaadishhiikaabhirmo chitah paramaadbhayaat || 2-8-30

"We hear that a tree marked down for felling by foresters, when covered by thorny Ishiika grass, is saved from this great danger of cutting. So also, Dasaratha might have supported Bharata if he was staying near to him in Ayodhya."

goptaa hi raamam saumitrirlakshmanam chaapi raaghavah |

ashvinoriva saubhraatram tayorlokeshhu vishrutam || 2-8-31

"Lakshmana protects Rama. Rama protects Lakshmana. Their brotherly love is as famous as that of Ashwini celestials."

tasmaanna lakshmane raamah paapam kijnchitkarishhyati |

raamastu bharate paapam kuryaaditi na samshayah || 2-8-32

"Hence, Rama will not do a sinful act of killing Lakshmana. However there is no doubt that he will do so in the case of Bharata."

tasmaadraajagrihaadeva vanam gachchhatu te sutah |

etaddhi rochate mahyam bhrishm chaapi hitam tava || 2-8-33

"Hence, I feel that it is better for your son to go to forest directly from his uncle's house. This is good for you too."

evam te jjnaatipakshasya shreyashchaiva bhavishhyati |

yadi chedbharato dharmaatpitryam raajyamavaapsyati || 2-8-34

"If Bharata gets his father's kingdom as per law, it will be beneficial to you and your side of relatives."

sa te sukhochito baalo raamasya sahajo ripuh |

samriddhaarthasya nashhtaartho jiivishhyati katham vashe || 2-8-35

"Your youthful son, habituated to comforts, is a natural enemy to Rama. How can Bharata who failed to achieve his purpose live under control of Rama; whose flourishing object has been realized?"

abhidrutamivaaranye simhena gajayuuthapam |

prachchhaadyamaanam raamena bharatam traatumarhasi || 2-8-36

"Rama is chasing and bringing down Bharata as a lion chases an elephant-king in forest. You ought to protect Bharata."

darpaanniraakritaa puurvam tvayaa saubhaagyavattayaa |

raamamaataa sapatnii te katham vairam na shaatayet || 2-8-37

"Previously, you treated Kausalya with disrespect due to arrogance that you were fortunate. Will not such Kausalya, your rival wife, revenge for that animosity?"

yadaa hi raamah prithiviimavaapsyati |

prabhuutaratnaakarashailapattanaam |

tadaa gamishhyasyashubham paraabhavam |

sahaiva diinaa bharatena bhaamini || 2-8-38

"O, Kaikeyi! The day Rama becomes lord of this earth with its great oceans, mountains and towns; that day you and your Bharata will get a bad and pitiable position of ignominy."

yadaa hi raamah prithiviimavaapsyati |

dhruvam pranashhto bharato bhavishhyati |

ato hi samchintaya raajyamaatmaje |

parsya chaivaadya vivaasakaaranam || 2-8-39

"When Rama gets power of the kingdom Bharata will certainly get ruined. Hence, think of a solution to get your son Bharata the kingdom and to send Rama, your enemy, to exile."

|| ityaarshhe shriimadraamaayane aadikaavye ayodhyakaande ashhthamah sargah ||

Thus completes 8th Chapter of Ayodhya Kanda of the glorious Ramayana of Valmiki, the work of a sage and the oldest epic.

Sriman Moola Rama Vijayate

 

References

 

K. M. K. Murthy. (1999). Ayodhya Kanda - Book Of Ayodhya.

 

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

 

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

 

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