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Chapter 41: Amshuman Retrieves the Stolen Horse

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Amshuman Retrieves the Stolen Horse

 

Summary

Anshuman’s search for horse reveals that Kapila rendered his paternal-uncles to ashes. When he wanted to offer water oblation as obsequies to their souls he did not find water. Then Garuda, the Eagle-vehicle of Vishnu and maternal uncle of Anshuman advises him to get River Ganga onto earth whereby the souls are cleansed [to rid of impurities] and they go to heaven. Anshuman reports the same to King Sagara, but Sagara not finding any way to get River Ganga onto earth departs to heaven at the end of his time.

Chapter [Sarga] 41 in Detail

putraan cira gataan jnaatvaa sagaro raghuna.ndana |

naptaaram abraviit raajaa diipyamaanam sva tejasaa || 1-41-1

On observing that his sons have gone long time back in search of ritual-horse, oh, Rama, king Sagara spoke this to his grandson, Anshuman, who is radiant with his own self-resplendence [splendor]. Thus Vishvamitra continued his narration about Sagara. [1-41-1]

shuurah ca krita vidyah ca puurvaih tulyo asi tejasaa |

pitrinaam gatim anviccha yena ca ashvo apahaaritah || 1-41-2

 'You are brave one and completed your education in warfare, such as you are, you are a coequal to your paternal-uncles in magnificence, thus you search the course of your paternal uncles, also him by whom the horse is stolen.' Thus King Sagara started speaking to his grandson Anshuman. [1-41-2]

antar bhaumaani sattvaani viiryavanti mahaanti ca |

tesaam tvam pratighaata artham sa asim grihniisva kaarmukam || 1-41-3

‘The living beings in netherworlds of earth are intrepid [characterized by resolute fearlessness] and they are extraordinary also, hence you take your bow along with your sword to retaliate [to get revenge] them in the event of their attacking you. [1-41-3]

abhivaadya abhivaadyaan tvam hatvaa vighna karaan api |

siddhaarthah sa.mnivartasva mama yajnasya paaragah || 1-41-4

 'On saluting them that are worthy for salutations, and on eliminating them that are the causer of obstructions, you shall achieve your purpose of tracking the ritual-horse, and thus you comeback safely and let my Vedic-ritual be crossed over to the other shore of mortality by you.' Thus king Sagara told his grandson Anshuman. [1-41-4]

evam ukto a.mshumaan samyak sagarena mahaatmanaa |

dhanur aadaaya khadgam ca jagaama laghuvikramah || 1-41-5

When the great-souled king Sagara has thoroughly said in this way, that adroitly [clever] agile Anshuman proceeded wielding a bow and a sword. [1-41-5]

sa khaatam pitribhih maargam antar bhaumam mahaatmabhih |

praapadyata narashrestha tena raajnaa abhicoditah || 1-41-6

Motivated by the King Sagara, oh, Rama, the best one among men, Amshuman progressed on the walkway that was hollowed out by his great-souled paternal-uncles inside the earth. [1-41-6]

deva daanava raksobhih pishaaca pataga uragaih |

puujyamaanam mahaatejaa dishaa gajam apashyata || 1-41-7

And he that resplendent [shining brilliantly] Anshuman beheld one of the four directional elephant of the earth which is being venerated by Gods, monsters, demons, imps [small demons], vultures and serpents. [1-41-7]

sa tam pradaksinam kritvaa pristvaa caiva niraamayam |

pitriin sa paripapraccha vaaji hartaaram eva ca || 1-41-8

On circumambulating that elephant in supplication [humbly], and even on enquiring after its well-being, he that Anshuman has enquired in detail with it for his paternal-uncles and even about the robber of the ritual-horse. [1-41-8]

dishaa gajah tu tat shrutvaa pratyuvaaca mahaamatih |

aasama.nja kritaarthah tvam saha ashvah shiighram esyasi || 1-41-9

On hearing that enquiry of Anshuman that directional elephant with great perception replied on its part saying, 'oh Anshuman, son of Asamanja, on achieving your mission you will return expeditiously along with the horse. [1-41-9]

tasya tad vacanam shrutvaa sarvaan eva dishaa gajaan |

yathaa kramam yathaa nyaayam prastum samupacakrame || 1-41-10

On hearing that word of that directional elephant he departed from there, and on sequentially reaching other directional elephants that are abiding in other directions of earth, he commenced to ask the same enquiry which he made with the first, according to the positioning of elephants in directions, and according to the established procedures of their venerability [made sacred especially by religious offerings]. [1-41-10]

taih ca sarvaih dishaa paalaih vaakyajnaih vaakyakovidaih |

puujitah sa hayah caiva gantaa asi iti abhicoditah || 1-41-11

All the elephants that safeguard the directions of earth which have the faculties of articulation [a joint] and eloquence have adored Anshuman and motivated him by saying, 'you will be going from here taking the horse.' [1-41-11]

tesaam tat vacanam shrutvaa jagaama laghuvikramah |

bhasma raashii kritaa yatra pitarah tasya saagaraah || 1-41-12

On hearing that common blessing of all the directional-elephants, he that nimble-footed Anshuman has gone to the place where his paternal-uncles, sons of Sagara, were rendered as mounds of ashes. [1-41-12]

sa duhkha vasham aapannah tu asama.nja sutah tadaa |

cukrosha parama aartah tu vadhaat tesaam suduhkhitah || 1-41-13

But he on whom the control of anguish [anger] has chanced for not physically seeing his paternal-uncles, that son of Asamanja then wept, as he is highly agonized and extremely anguished [angered] at their destruction. [1-41-13]

yajniyam ca hayam tatra carantam aviduuratah |

dadarsha purusavyaaghro duhkha shoka samanvitah || 1-41-14

That tigerly-man Anshuman who is overwhelmed by agony and anguish, also beheld [observed or saw] there the horse of Vedic-ritual that is grazing nearby. [1-41-14]

sa tesaam raaja putraanaam kartu kaamo jala kriyaam |

sa jalaartham mahaatejaa na ca apashyat jala aashayam || 1-41-15

When he that great resplendent Anshuman wanted to offer obsequial [a funeral or burial rite] waters to the departed sons of Sagara and searched for water he has not found any fount [fountain or source] of water. [1-41-15]

visaarya nipunaam dristim tato apashyat khaga adhipam |

pitrinaam maatulam raama suparnam anila upamam || 1-41-16

Spanning his expert glances, oh, Rama, he then saw the rapid-winged king of birds, namely Garuda, the Eagle-vehicle of Vishnu, who is the maternal uncle of his father and other paternal-uncles, and whose flight will be similar to that of the Wind-God. [1-41-16]

sa ca enam abraviit vaakyam vainateyo mahaabalah |

maa shucah purusavyaaghra vadho ayam loka sammatah || 1-41-17

That great-mighty son of Lady Vinata, namely Garuda, also spoke this word to Anshuman, 'do not bemoan [distress over], oh, tigerly-man, this eradication of your paternal-uncles is worthwhile to the worlds. [1-41-17]

kapilena aprameyena dagdhaa hi ime mahaabalaah |

salilam na arhhasi praajna daatum esaam hi laukikam || 1-41-18

 'In fact, Kapila, the Imponderable [incapable of being weighed or evaluated with exactness] Sage, has burnt down those great-mighty paternal-uncles of yours, oh, observant Anshuman, as such it will not be apt [suitable] of you to offer the mundane obsequial [a funeral or burial rite] water-oblations to them, indeed. [1-41-18]

gangaa himavato jyesthaa duhitaa purusarsabha |

tasyaam kuru mahaabaaho pitrinaam tu jala kriyaam || 1-41-19

‘Oh, best one among men, River Ganga is the elder daughter of Himavanta, and oh, dexterous [mentally adroit and skillful] one, you have to offer water-oblation to the departed paternal-uncles of yours in her waters, namely the holy waters of River Ganga. [1-41-19]

bhasma raashii kritaan etaan paavayet loka kaa.ntayaa |

tayaa klinnam idam bhasma ga.ngayaa loka kaantayaa |

sastim putra sahasraani svarga lokam gamisyati || 1-41-20

 'World purifier River Ganga will drift them who are rendered as mounds of ashes to heaven, and when she who is much adored by all worlds drenches this ash, that River Ganga herself will lead the sixty-thousand sons of Sagara to heaven. [1-41-20]

nirhgaccha ca ashvam mahaabhaaga sa.mgrihya purusarsabha |

yajnam paitaamaham viira nirvartayitum arhasi || 1-41-21

‘Oh, great fortunate one, oh, best one among men, you may proceed from here with the horse, oh, brave one, it will be apt of you to carry out the Vedic-ritual of your grandfather.' Thus Garuda said to Anshuman. [1-41-21]

suparna vacanam shrutvaa sah a.mshumaan ativiiryavaan |

tvaritam hayam aadaaya punar aayaat mahaayashaah || 1-41-22

On hearing the words of that great-winged eagle, Garuda, he that highly brave and well-renowned Anshuman swiftly took the horse, and returned to the ritual place of his grandfather, king Sagara. [1-41-22]

tato raajaanam aasaadya diiksitam raghuna.ndana |

nyavedayat yathaa vrittam suparna vacanam tathaa || 1-41-23

Then on reaching the King Sagara, who is under the vow of the ritual, oh, Rama, Anshuman described what all has happened and even the words of Garuda. [1-41-23]

tat shrutvaa ghora sa.mkaasham vaakyam a.mshumato nripah |

yajnam nirvartayaamaasa yathaa kalpam yathaa vidhi || 1-41-24

On hearing those unendurable [unbearable] words from Anshuman, the king Sagara firstly completed the Vedic-ritual scripturally and procedurally. [1-41-24]

sva puram ca agamat shriimaan ista yajno mahiipatih |

gangaayaah ca aagame raajaa nishcayam na adhyagacchata || 1-41-25

On completing the Vedic-ritual King Sagara arrived at his capital, but that king could not arrive at a decision about the arrival of Ganga to the earth. [1-41-25]

agatvaa nishcayam raajaa kaalena mahataa mahaan |

trimshat varsa sahasraani raajyam kritvaa divam gatah || 1-41-26

That great king Sagara could not get at any resolve in getting Ganga to earth even after a long time, and on ruling kingdom for thirty-thousand years he went to heaven. Thus Vishvamitra continued his narration about the ancestors of Rama. [1-41-26]

iti vaalmiiki raamaayane aadi kaavye baala kaande eka catvaari.mshah sargah

Thus, this is the 41st chapter in Bala Kanda of Valmiki Ramayana, the First Epic poem of India.

Sriman Moola Rama Vijayate

References

Desiraju Hanumanta Rao. (1998). Balakanda - Book Of Youthful Majesties.

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

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

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