English Commentaries

Ravana’s contention: 5.51.28-33

‘By the abundant dharma, which I have earned, I can be saved .As a person enjoys a kingdom and also suffers from a disease simultaneously on account of dharma and adharma it should be accepted that both could yield their fruits together. Or, it is possible when dharma is more it suppresses adharma. Assuming these two alternatives Hanuman replies that the first is impossible. The happiness that comes from dharma is never mixed with the fruit of adharma. It cannot be enjoyed with the result of adharma at all. Your (Ravana’s) dharma and adharma are the same, austerities and kidnapping of other’s wife respectively. Their fruits are invincibility and death respectively. They cannot occur together like kingdom and disease.
The reply is given to the second alternative. Dharma cannot nullify the result of adharma. It is not possible to experience the fruit of dharma suppressing adharma.
Or, anticipating the objection from Ravana, that his good deeds will protect him even from whom he had not obtained invincibility”, Hanuman says – “In that case, according to the same logic, the lot of adharma committed by you will destroy you”.
Happiness, which is the fruit of dharma, cannot combine with sorrow since both have opposite causes. Happiness can combine only with happiness. Similarly, the result of adharma, viz, sorrow can follow sorrow only.
Dharma is not the destroyer of adharma. Dharma earned earlier cannot destroy the present (current) adharma. It is understood here that adharma also cannot destroy dharma. The idea is that both dharma and adharma get destroyed only by the experience of their fruits.
If this is objected by Ravana stating that the result of the adharma will come only after the enjoyment of his vast dharma, Hanuman says,“you have already finished the enjoyment of your vast dharma fully. You will enjoy the fruit of your adharma, namely, the kidnapping of Sita very early. Hanuman says this with the idea that Ravana should not think what a Hanuman after all can do to me.

The commetator presumes the questions that Ravana would have in mind and links with Hanuman’s replies.


The three adjectives ‘Ramadasaya’, ‘Ramadutaaya’ and ‘Vanaranyaya’ suggest Hanuman’s knowledge of Rama’s might, Hanuman’s eligibility to advice and Hanuman’s neutral position says the commentator.


The word ‘Swayambhu’ and other adjectives used in these slokas suggest the special powers of gods. Indra is one who has supreme power, the Vedas state that Indra is called Mahendra since he killed the demon Vrtra. Indra is one who carries the weapon Vajra in his hand. He is the controller of the three worlds, killer of Vrtra and all gods surround him. Rudra is the god who makes the beings weep by killing them at the time of annihilation. Rudra is one who gives the world, namely Veda, to Brahma at the beginning of creation. Or Rudra is one who entertains the worlds with musical sound. Or Rudra is one who grants the desired objects to all by means of the sound of pranava (Om) or Veda. Or Rudra is one who melts the sorrow or the cause of sorrow. It is said – the god who melts down the sorrow or cause of sorrow is called Rudra. He is Siva, the final cause. It may mean also the highest lord who possesses the eye in the forehead which can burn down the enemies into ashes and who destroyed the three cities.
Brahma is one who grows big or who makes the world grow. He is Svayambhu, (self-born) that is he is totally independent. He is Virinci who has greatness, total independence, many faces, and ability of managing the world.
Neither Indra, nor Rudra, nor Brahma can save an enemy of Rama in a war is Hanuman’s contention.