English Commentaries


Hanuman addresses Ravana as ‘Mahaprajna’, as Ravana was wise and knew the essentials of dharma and artha .

Hanuman declares his job to Ravana 5.51.22

‘Sita was seen in your house’, a statement made by Hanuman, ‘is an evasive statement’. “I found her amidst millions of demons and the cause is Rama. My job was only to find Sita” is the statement of Hanuman. ‘(maya Sita Laksita), the purport is ‘Like the fire of the poison of the serpent your city will be burnt by the fire of the sorrow of Sita.’ (avadhyatam), the purport is, ‘She is going to be the cause for your death being an embodiment of dharma earned by penance’. (Sugrivas ca harisvarah): the purport is ‘At the time of receiving the boons those whom you suspected that they will kill you were sought to be made to become unable to conquer you. Rama is not one of them because he is a human being and the lord of the monkeys is a monkey. Both of them are capable of killing you’.

Power of dharma 5.51.28-29

Did not Ravana get the boon that there should be victory for him in all places? ‘Na tu dharmopasamharam adharma phalasamhitam’, it means ‘The person who acquires strength that yields adharmic results and heads towards the realization of the results, the results of dharma do not follow although he has acquired dharma’.
Does the power of dharma destroy the adharma already accrued is the question here? The poet says that any severe adharma of the present is destroyed by dharma acquired later on. But the word ‘ca’ used here indicates that severe adharma destroys dharma’. The purport is, ‘Since Ravana has acquired severe adharma, and compared to his entire dharma the adharma that he has in reserve thus far is adequate to ruin all his dharma’.
There is another reading ‘Dharmopasamharam adharmaphala samhitam’(sloka 28) which means, ‘The collection of dharma and the happiness which results on account of it cannot coexist with misery which results from adharma. Both cannot be simultaneously experienced. Therefore, the result of dharma can be followed by happiness only. Similarly the result can only be misery for adharma.
Later, there is a reading, ‘dharmo nadharma nasanah’(sloka 29). This implies, ‘the dharma that one has acquired cannot destroy adharma of the present. ‘Ca’ of earlier reading indicates that adharma also cannot destroy dharma’ according to some’.
Therefore the appropriateness of the sense has to be considered according to the word derivation. Then does dharma that is acquired become invalid? ‘Praptam dharmaphalam’ refers to ‘the dharma that is acquired earlier’. Hanuman says “you will reap the disastrous fruits of abduction of the wife of another person. The merit and demerit (papa) would bring quick results.

Hanuman’s statement on Rama 5.51.31-46

Vanarasya visesatah: “Listen, to the words which I am going to tell you carefully.” But the statement that he is a servant of Rama indicates that he has the knowledge of Rama’s greatness and his own authority to advise Ravana. It also denotes his point of justice that he is one who is neither a man nor a demon. Hanuman says that Rama can create all beings, which indicates that he is the origin, existence and dissolution of the world. He is entitled to create and destroy. He is ‘Upendrah’ that is ‘Visnu who is entitled to protect. The meaning that Hanuman conveys on the whole is, ‘You cannot be saved even by the trio of gods because Rama represents the three’.

Vibhishana says, “ the question is, if this messenger is killed and another one does not come then the enemy is not destroyed which is against your desire”. The question again is, ‘If my enemy does not appear even then is not my desire fulfilled?’ replies Ravana. “Are valour in the battlefield and glory of victory your desires? Both of these desires get lost if this messenger is killed”. Ravana’s nature was rajasik and therefore Vibhishana provokes him to fight and he uses the word, ‘arrogant’. (sloka 5.51.22)Two meanings are possible. ‘You should not destroy the eagerness of the demons to fight in the war’ or O Delighter of the demons! You are the conqueror of the gods and demons. You should not stop the event of war of your choice’. “Such soldiers who have been brought up so well will surely be victorious”.