This is an interesting story involving Lord Hanumana, Lord Shani, Meghnaad and Ravana. This story explains why Lord Shani likes devotees of Lord Hanumana.
Birth of Meghnaad
When the birth of Meghnaad was approaching, Ravana instructed all the Navagrahas to stay in the 11th house of Meghnaad’s horoscope. By doing this, he wanted to ensure that Meghnaad becomes invincible. All planets stayed in the 11th house of Meghnaad’s horoscope as per Ravana’s instructions. But Lord Shanidev refused to comply with Ravana’s orders even though the Asura king was immensely powerful. So he stretched his leg a little bit from Ravana’s clutches towards his 12th House. Ravana’s knew that this will cause Meghnaad’s death, so he imprisoned him in a dark tiny cell so that nobody could see Shani’s face again.
Ravana imprisons Shanidev
Ravana got angry with this and he imprisoned Lord Shani. Ravana worried about the malefic gaze of Shani and the effect it could have on his son’s life. So he imprisoned him. But Shanidev cursed Ravana and said that Lanka would burn violently in the Treta Yuga. He also stated that Ravana’s greed and malice would be the end of him.
Lord Hanumana comes to Lanka
When Lord Hanumana came in search of Devi Sita, he happened to burn Lanka as per the curse of Lord. When he was returning, he saw him in prison. Lord Hanumana freed him. Grateful, he says to Lord Hanumana – I cannot trouble you. Since you have saved me from Raavan’s prison I would like to give you a boon.
Lord Shani gives a boon to Lord Hanumana
For the boon, Hanumana asked him not to trouble or cast evil eye on his devotees. Lord Shani promised not to trouble or cause hardships to Hanuman devotees. When he was freed, he asked Hanuman – “Could you give me some oil to relieve my this wretched pain?” Then Hanuman gave him some mustard oil to Lord, after the massage of that oil on his body, his pain was relieved immediately. Since then it has been customary to offer some mustard oil in the name of Lord. It is symbolic to sooth his pain. He feels satisfied and this makes him benevolent towards the devotee of Ram. That is why who worship Hanuman on Saturday are not affected by Shani’s Dosh.
Ravan had a brother called Ahiravan. He was the ruler of Pataal Lok( the netherworld), and a master of illusion and magic. When Meghnad was killed by Lakshmana, and Ravan was losing the battle against Ram, he reached out to Ahiravan for help.
Ahiravan promised to capture Ram and Lakshman alive, take them to his kingdom, where he would sacrifice them to the Goddess Mahamaya. Vibhishan came to know of Ahiravan’s plans, informs Ram and Lakshman of this, makes necessary arrangements and asks Hanuman to keep guard over them.
He also told Hanuman, that Ahiravan is a master of disguise, and to be careful of any trickery. Ahiravan tries to enter the place, where Ram and Lakshman are sleeping, in various disguises, but Hanuman manages to thwart him. Finally he assumes the guise of Vibhishan himself, and gets past Hanuman, abducts Ram and Lakshman to Pataal Lok.
When Hanuman finds he has been tricked by Ahiravan, he vows to find Ram and Lakshman, and kill Ahiravan. Hanuman goes down into the Patala Loka, where he finds Ahiravan’s massive palace, that is heavily guarded on all sides.
He first has to contend with the guard, Makardhwaja, who is half Vanara, half fish, and also happens to be Hanuman’s son in a way too. After defeating his son, Hanuman makes his way into Ahiravan’s palace and learns that the way to kill Ahiravan is to extinguish 5 different lamps in different directions.
This is when Hanuman assumes his Panchamukha Anjaneya form here.The 4 faces of Hanuman, Varaha, Garuda and Narasimha face East, South, West and North respectively, while the 5th face of Hayagriva, faces upwards.
In this form, Hanuman manages to extinguish the 5 different lamps all at one time, and goes on to kill Ahiravan with one swift stroke of the knife. Thus he manages to save Ram and Lakshman, and bring them back from Patala Loka, where they resume the battle against Ravan.
Lord Hanumana devotion for Lord Rama is unparalleled. Here is the story of him when he tore his heart to show his closeness to Lord Rama.
One day six months after his coronation Rama called all the monkeys and his friends and said to them, “All of you are dearer to me than my life. But now return to your homes.” Rich gifts soaked in love were showered lavishly upon them and Rama saw them off with his blessings.
Lord Rama was very overwhelmed and embraced seeing Hanuman. Lord Ram said that he could never thank Hanuman for his noble efforts and endless services. Lord Ram Said Hanuman effort cannot be valued.
Then Mata Sita rewarded Hanuman with a precious necklace that she was wearing. Hanuman tore open the stones of the necklace and looked into each one of them, as if him finding something in them. Every one present in the court surprisingly asked him the reason for damaging such a valuable necklace. Hanuman answered that he was looking for his Lord Rama and Sita in these stones. And if he is unable to see his Lord in them, the necklace was worthless to him.
Everybody in the court laughed and mocked Hanuman for exaggerating his love and devotion. They challenged him to show if Ram-Sita residing in him. Hanuman tore off his chest and shocked everyone presenting in the court by seeing Ram and Sita literally residing in his heart.
When it comes to Ramayana and Lord Rama, Lord Hanumana is always remembered. He was a great devotee of Rama, a great scholar and one who was capable of winning all three worlds. But, he set the example to the world and a great lesson in humbleness. These facts are about Ramayana, but Lord Hanumana is an integral part of this.
Lord Rama’ s departure from earth
Ram wouldn’t leave earth as Hanuman wouldn’t allow Yama (God of Death) to enter Ayodhya to claim Ram. To divert Hanuman‘s attention Ram dropped his ring through a crack in the floor and asked Hanuman to fetch it back for him. Going down Hanuman reached the land of serpents and asked the King for Ram’s ring. The king showed Hanuman a vault filled with rings all of which were Ram’s. He told a shocked Hanuman that when in the cycle of time a Ram needs to depart, he drops a ring down the crack so that a Hanuman can be diverted from his guard.
Why Laxman was younger to Rama but Balrama was elder to Shri Krishna
Laxman complained that he always had to follow Ram’s instructions even though when he thought they were unjust as he the younger brother and thus duty bound. Ram promised his that in the next life, he, Lakshman would be the elder brother, but also told him that he would still follow his instructions. They were reborn as Balrama and Krishna. And yet Balrama (elder & Shesha Naga) followed Krishna not because of seniority but because Krishna was always right.
Jambavanta wish to fight Lord Rama was fulfilled in next incarnation of Lord Rama
Pleased with his help during the battle with Ravana, Lord Rama granted Jambavanta a wish. Jambavantha then expressed his wish to fight Lord Rama in a duel. Lord Rama said he would definitely fight him but not as Rama. Later in Dwapara yuga, Krishna fought Jambavanta in a duel and defeated him. Jambavantha then realized that it was Lord Rama who in Krishna’s form defeated him.
How Devi Sita satisfied Lord Hanumana’s hunger
Lord Hanumana once visited Sita in sage Valmiki’s cottage and expressed his desire to eat the food cooked by Sita. Sita cooked many delicacies and started serving Hanumana. But Hanumana’s hunger was insatiable and the entire rations of the cottage were coming to an end. Sita then asked to Lord Rama who suggested her she serve a morsel with a Tulsi Leaf. Sita did the same and Hanumana’s hunger was finally satisfied.
Why Lord Hanumana’s body is covered with vermilion (Sindoor)
Once Lord Hanumana saw Sita applying sindoor (Vermilion) to her hair. He asked her what purpose it served to which Sita replied that it was for the well being and long life of Lord Rama. Then Hanuman smeared his entire body with sindoor for the long life of Lord Rama.
Why Lord Rama was separated from Sita – Due to Parvati’s curse
After Ravana and his brothers received boons from Lord Brahma, Ravana planned on invading the kingdom of Amaravati, the capital of the heavenly kingdom of Indra. Knowing Ravana’s strength and capability, Indra consults Narada for help.
Narada tells Indra that Ravana is powerful because his family worships Lord Shiva and that the worship in turn gives them such tremendous power. Narada then suggests Indra that he disrupt Kaikesi’s (Ravan’s Mother) worship of a Linga which is made of sand. Indra disrupts the prayer by destroying the Linga. Knowing this Ravana then promises Kaikesi that he will perform penance and bring Lord Shiva’s Aatma Linga for her to worship.
Goddess Parvathi comes to know about Ravana’s penance and fears that Lord Shiva might leave Kailasa and go to earth forever. Narada then suggests Goddess Parvathi that she seek Lord Vishnu’s help in this matter. Lord Shiva impressed by Ravana’s penance grants him a wish. Lord Vishnu then uses his magic to trick Ravana into asking Goddess Parvathi’s hand from lord Shiva instead of the Aatma Linga. Shiva grants Ravana’s wish. Goddess Parvathi then curses Lord Vishnu that he will also be seperated from his spouse the next time he is born as a human.
This curse laid the path for Sita’s abduction and the Ramayana.
In the ensuing battle, Indrajit uses Brahamastra and renders Rama, Laxmana and numerous other warriors unconscious. Hanumana, the snakat mochan, brings the mountain of heavenly herbs to the battle ground and the brothers are revived.
Indrajit promises his father
Seeing Ravana in a dejected state, Indrajit assures his father that he will soon kill Rama and Laxmana and end all worries of Lanka. After saying these, Indrajit, with a clear objective, sought permission from Ravana. After this, he mounted his chariot with great speed.The great warrior Indrajit, the annihilator of enemies, having ascended a chariot looking like the chariot of the sun, rushed to the battle-front.
Indrajit performs a ritual
After reaching the battle field, Indrajit completed a sacrificial ritual. Then he becomes invisible in the sky. Then he throws multiple arrows towards monkeys and monkeys lose their consciousness. He kills monkeys with his mace and arrows. Those monkeys, wielding mountains as their weapons, roaring in the battle field, without turning back, abandoned their lives, showing their courage for the sake of Rama.Continuing to stay in the battle-field, those monkeys rained trees, mountain-peaks and rocks on Indrajit.
He attacks all great monkeys and cause injuries
Indrajit then struck Jambavant with ten arrows and Nila with thirty arrows. He also struck Sugreeva, Rishabha, Angada and Dvividawith sharp and terrific arrows endowed with boons and made them breathless. That enraged Indrajit, then looking like an excited fire that is to destroy the world, tormented other chiefs of monkeys too with many arrows. Indrajit the excellent demon struck all those foremost of monkeys, namely Hanuman, Sugreeva, Angada, Gandhamadana, Jambavan, Sushena, Vegadarshina, Mainda, Dvivida, Nila, Gavaksha, Gavaya, Kesari, Hariloma, Vidyuddamshtra, Suryanana, Jyothimukha, a monkey called Dadhimukha, Pavakaksha, Nala as also a monkey named Kumuda.
Indrajit was undefeatable that day from the power of Brahma’s boon
As Indrajit has performed the worship of Goddess Nikumbala, he could not be defeated that day. After completing the worship, a celestial chariot appears on the horizon, and while Indrajit is riding the chariot, he could not be defeated.
Rama again shows his leadership skills
As Indrajit was proving a handful and he was decimating Rama’s army. Rama thought of a way to neutralize him. Rama says to Laxman that they both can act as thought they fell unconscious, so that Indrajit can return to Lanka, boasting of his laurels of victory. In this way, further loss of lives of Vanaras can be saved. Rama showed is exemplary leadership qualities and accepted this situation by stepping back. So when, Indrajit struck with Brahmastra, Rama, Laxman and innumerable monekys fell unconscious.
Indrajit, getting eulogized by the demons, quickly reached the city of Lanka which was being protected by Ravana’s arms. Then, Indrajit cheerfully informed all that had happened, to his father.
Hanumana and Vibhishana start the revival process
Vibhishana and Hanuma saw Sugreeva, Angada, Nila, Sharabha, Gandhamadana, Gavaksha, Sushena, Vegadarshi, Mainda, Nala, Jyotimukha and a monkey called Dvivida, who were struck down on the battle-field. The found Jambavant in the battle field. Jambavant says that if Hanumana is alive, then whole army can be revived. Hearing this Vibhishana quickly went to Lord Hanuman and requested him for assistance.
Jambavant provides details to Hanumana
Jambavant advises Hanuman to bring the Sanjeevani. He provided the location as a herbal mountain, which exists between two peaks of Mount Rishabha and Mount Kailash. This herbal mountain contains a number of herbs. On the head, there are four blazing herbs. They are Mrita Sanjeevani (for restoring the dead to life), Vishalyakarani (for extracting weapons and healing all wounds inflicted by weapons), Suvarnakarani (restoring the body to its original complexion) and Sandhani, the great herb (for joining severed limbs or fractured bone). He then asks Hanumana to bring all these herbs.
Hanumana proceeds to bring herbs
On advise of Jambavanta, Hanumana quickly proceeded to bring the requisite herbs. There, another problem was posed. On the mountain, knowing that some foreign body has come, these heavenly herbs have made themselves invisible. Hanumana decided to take the whole mountain with him in order to revive Rama and Laxmana. Soon, with the power of herbs the two brothers and numerous other warriors of Sugriva’s army, gained consciousness.
The battle resumed
Sugriva instructed monkeys to set Lanka on fire with their torches. Enraged by this, Ravana sent both Kumbha and Nimkumbha, the sons of Kumbhakarna, along with a multitude of demons. By the orders of Ravana, Yupaksha, Shonitaksha, Prajangha and Kampana along with the aforesaid sons of Kumbhakarna set out for the battle.
More demons were killed
Soon, a fierce battle started and more demons were killed. Angada kills Kampana and severely injures Shonitaksha, the demons in battle. Angada, along with Mainda and Dvivida the monkey-warriors encounter Shonitaksha, Yupaksha and Prajangha. Angada kills Prajangha. Shonitaksha dies in the hands of Dvivida and Youpaksha at the hands of Mainda.
Kumbha and Nikumbha were also slain
When Kumbha throws down Angada in the battle-field, Rama sends some more monkey-chiefs headed by Jambavan. Sugriva, with his thunderbolt-like fist, strikes Kumbha with a heavy blow and kills him. Seeing Kumbha his brother killed in battle, the enraged Nikumbha with an iron club as his weapon roars and faces the battle. Hanuma directly attacks Nikumbha, by striking his fist forcibly on Nikumbha’s breast. Unmoved by that blow, Nikumbha lifts Hanuma, off the ground. Hanuma in retaliation frees himself and throws down Nikumbha on the ground. Hanuma descends on Nikumbha, pounds his chest with his fist, catches his head and tears it off. Thus, Nikumbha dies at the hands of Hanuma.
End of Maharaksha
Ravana orders Makaraksha to proceed to the battle-field with an army and to kill Rama, Laxmana and the monkeys. Makaraksha, surrounded by his army of demons, set out for the encounter. His army march forward in the battle-field, to reach Rama and Laxmana. He was interecepted by Rama on the battle field and later killed by the lord himself.
Ravana sends Indrajit again
Ravana once again, then turns to Indrajit for help and asks him to go to the battleground to fight with Rama and his army, Indrajit complies.
Lord Hanumana is famous for his devotion towards Lord Rama. He helped him tremendously in getting back Sita from the clutches of Ravana, the demon king. His famous exploit was burning the Lanka city. Here are few more facts about him, which are not famous but interesting.
He was born to Anjana and father Kesari.He is also called the son of the deity Vayu (Wind god, himself the son of Vishnu) because of legends associated with Vayu’s role in Hanuman’s birth
Birth of Lord Hanumana
There is an interesting story of birth of Lord Hanumana. Vrihaspati had an attendant called Punjikasthala, who was cursed to assume the form of a female monkey — a curse that could only be nullified if she would give birth to an incarnation of Lord Shiva. Reborn as Anjana, she performed intense austerities to please Shiva, who finally granted her the boon that would cure her of the curse.
How he became a companion of Sugriva
Hanumana selected Surya, the sun god as his preceptor, and approached him with the request to teach the scriptures. Surya agreed and Hanumana became his disciple, but had to face his constantly moving guru by traversing the sky backwards at equal pace, while taking his lessons. Hanumana’s phenomenal concentration took him only 60 hours to master the scriptures. Surya considered the manner in which Hanumana accomplished his studies as his tuition fees, but when Hanuman requested him to accept something more than that, the sun god asked Hanumana to assist his son Sugriva, by being his minister and compatriot.
Why Lord Hanumana is covered with sindoor
After the exile was over and Shri Ram, Sita Mata were back in Ayodya. On day Lord Hanumana saw Sita Mata wearing sindoor and asked with curiosity about the same. Sita Mata replied, because I’m married to Shri Ram & because he is my master, as per rituals I have to wear it. Sita Mata replied, wearing Sindoor will result good for my husband & will also bless my master with long life.
A second later, Lord Hanumana besmeared sindoor in all his body. With this gesture of Shri Hanuman, Shri Ram was very impressed & gave a blessing to Shri Hanuman, that any one who will offer Sindoor to Shri Hanuman, all his hurdles will get removed automatically.
Lord Hanumana had a son
Though Lord Hanumana was never married, he had a son. When Hanuman took a dip in the waters of sea, after burning whole of Lanka with the fire burning on his tail, a drop of his perspiration fell in to mouth of a mighty fish. Out of this the Makardhwaja was born.
He defeated his son to save Rama and Lakshmana
According to Ramayana told by Valmiki, when Ahiravana took Rama and Lakshmana to Patala, Hanuman followed them to their rescue. He was challenged at the gate of Patala by a creature, who was part Vanara and part reptile – a Makara. He introduced himself Makaradhwaja and son of Hanuman, the mighty warrior.
Hanuman was amused and said that, I am myself the Hanumana but he could not be his son, as he was celibate since birth. However, Hanumana then closed his eyes in dhyan to see the events described above of Makardhwaja’s birth.
Makardhwaja asked him for his blessings, however, he said to Hanuman, that he will have to fight him to enter Patala, as he cannot betray Ahiravana, his mentor. Hanuman defeats Makaradhwaja in a duel and binds him to proceed further to ultimately kill Ahiravana and rescue Rama & Lakshamana.
Later on, upon Rama’s advice he installed Makardhwaja, as King of Patala before returning to Lanka, to continue war with Ravana.
Rama and Sita in his heart
Shortly after Rama is crowned emperor upon his return to Ayodhya, Rama decides to ceremoniously reward all his well-wishers. At a grand ceremony in his court, all his friends and allies take turns being honoured at the throne. Hanuman approaches without desiring a reward. Seeing Hanuman come up to him, an emotionally overwhelmed Rama embraces him warmly, declaring that he could never adequately honour or repay Hanuman for the help and services he received from the noble Vanara. Sita, however, insists that Hanuman deserved honour more than anyone else, and Sita gives him a necklace of precious stones adorning her neck.
When he receives it, Hanuman immediately takes it apart, and peers into each stone. Taken aback, many of those present demand to know why he is destroying the precious gift. Hanuman answers that he was looking into the stones to make sure that Rama and Sita are in them, because if they are not, the necklace is of no value to him. At this, a few mock Hanuman, saying his reverence and love for Rama and Sita could not possibly be as deep as he implies. In response, Hanuman tears his chest open, and everyone is stunned to see Rama and Sita literally in his heart.
How Rama left this world when Hanumana was guarding him
As Hanumana had boons from various gods and it was not possible for Rama to leave this world in presence of him, following has happened.
One day when King Rama was sitting on his throne, his ring fell off. When it touched the earth, it made a hole in the ground and disappeared into it. It was gone. He friend Hanuman was nearby. Rama said, Look, my ring is lost.” Dear friend, “Help me find it please.”
Hanumana was a powerful Vanara, a monkey-god, with the power to change shape and size and enter any hole, no matter how tiny. He had the power to become the smallest of the small and larger than the largest thing. So he took on a tiny form and went down the hole.
Hanuman reached underworld looking for the lost ring. When he was finally taken to the King of Spirits, he kept repeating the name of Rama. The King of Spirits asked, “Who are you?”
“Why have you come here?”
“Rama’s ring fell into a hole, and I came to fetch it.”
The king looked around and found a platter, which he held up for Hanuman to see. On it were thousands of rings. All of them were Rama’s rings. The King of Spirits set it down and said, “pick out your ring and take it.”
They were all exactly the same. “I don’t know which one it is,” said Hanuman.
The King of Spirits said, “There have been as many Ramas as there are rings on this platter. When you return to earth, you will not find Rama. This incarnation of Rama is now over. Whenever an incarnation of Rama is about to be over, his ring falls down. I collect them and keep them. Now you can go.”
Hanuman Jayanti is an important festival for Hindus. Hanuman Jayanti is celebrated on the full moon day (poornima) of the Hindu lunar month of Chaitra. On this day, in a temple, spiritual discourses are started at dawn. Lord Hanuman was born at sunrise. At that time the spiritual discourse is stopped and the offering of food (Prasad) is distributed to all bhakts. At some parts in India, this festival is celebrated in the month of december.
Lord Hanumana’s childhood
Once when Hanumanji was young Surya deva (Sun deity) imbued him with knowledge of countless weapons and mantras. However, his hyperactive nature induced him to think of swallowing the `red, ripened fruit’ – the Sun! Before he succeeded, Indra hit him with his Vajra and persuaded him not to. On being hit by the Vajra, his beard – hanu-, became slanted. Therefore he also became known as Hanuman. The “ji” suffix after any name accords respect. Indra then blessed him that he will eternally remain undefeated, victorious. Hanumanji also obtained boons from Varuna deva (water deity) and Yama – deity of death, victory and immortality. From Brahma he obtained the power of inducing fear in enemies, of destroying fear in friends, to be able to change his form at will and to be able to easily travel wherever he wished. From Mahadevji he obtained the boons of longevity, scriptural wisdom and ability to cross the ocean.
Lord Hanumana’s devotion to Lord Rama
Lord Hanuman is known for its great strength, wisdom, power and his immortal devotion towards Lord Rama. He is considered to be a greatest follower of Lord Rama and played a crucial role in his life. He is also known as Sankat Mochan who people remember in both good and bad times. He is considered to be as one of the most powerful Hindu gods in India. According to Hindu mythology, as the son of ‘Pawan’, the God of Winds and ‘Anjanee’ often referred to as ‘Pawanputra,’ is blessed with immense physical and mental strength that is greatly inspiring.
When Ravan’s son Indrajit used his miraculous weapons, rendering Shri Ram and Lakshman unconscious, Hanumanji’s supreme devotion as the ideal devotee manifested. Advised by the Ayurvedic physician Sushena, to fetch the four types of herbs on mount Dronachal to revive the two, Hanumanji flew there. Not recognizing the herbs, he returned with the whole mountain! This miraculous power arose from his unalloyed devotion to Shri Ram and his brahmacharya.
Hanuman Jayanti is an occasion to remember his unbridled devotion to Lord Rama and his feats of daring. In their quest to fight against demon king Ravana, Lord Hanuman led a monkey army and built a bridge to Lanka.
There is an interesting story from Mahabharata about Bhima and Hanumana. This may sound strange but Bhima and Lord Hanumana can be termed as brothers, as they both are born to Lord Pawan, the god of winds. While Hanumana was a constant companion of Lord Rama in treta yuga, Shri Krishna was in company of Arjuna, Bhima’s brother, in the Mahabharata.
When Arjuna was away
Arjuna, the third pandava, had gone to the Himalayas in quest of great weapons from Indra. In case of a war, he would have to face great warriors like Bhishma, Drona, Kripa, Aswatthama, Karna many more. And it was necessary to acquire more skill and power. The other four pandavas and Draupadi found life devoid of joy in his absence. Desiring a change in life, they moved in search of a more peaceful place.
At last they came to the Narayanasrama forest. They decided to take rest and stay there for some time.
The flower and request to Bhima by Draupadi
One day, the wind placed a flower near Draupadi. The sweet scent of the flower mesmerized Draupadi. Draupadi felt a deep desire to possess that flower known as Saugandhika. She requested Bhima to get her that flower. Bhima agreed to to satisfy her desire. He set out in the direction from which the fragrance came.
Bhima meets the monkey
On way to the flower, Bhima found an old monkey resting on the path. He asked the monkey to give him way as he was obstructing his path. In reply, the monkey politely declines saying that he was old and weak. Bhima got angry and said that he was talking the greatest mace warrior and possesses great power. The monkey replies that if he has such strength, why don’t he himself make way by moving the monkey.
Bhima, out of pride and confidence, Bhima tried to pull the monkey’s tail aside .But he could not move it even a little bit. He put all his might in the endeavor, but to no avail. He was all perspiration. In spite of his best efforts, he could not move the tail. As such the question of challenging this monkey for a show of strength did not arise. He felt very humiliated and subdued. He told the monkey “You are no ordinary monkey. Please tell me who you are. I accept defeat and bow to you”.
The monkey tells about himself
Now, smilingly, the old monkey tells that he is Hanuman, his brother, who crossed the ocean in search of Sita. He said –I am your brother. Your path ahead is perilous. It is the path of the gods and is not safe for men. So I came to caution you. I knew you have come to collect the Saugandhika flower. I shall show you the pond, where this flower grows. You can collect as many as you want and go back. Bhima was happy. He bowed to Hanumana and requested him to show his huge form in which he jumped over the sea, one hundred yojanas wide, to land on Lanka.
Lord Hanumana shows his virata form
Hanumana increased his size till he seemed to occupy the whole landscape, like a hill. His form was dazzlingly white, so Bhima had to cover his eyes . Resuming his normal form, Hanuman embraced Bhima and blessed him. He also assured him “When you roar like a lion on the battle field, my voice shall join yours and strike terror in the hearts of your enemies. I will be there on the flag of the chariot of Arjuna .You will be victorious”. With Hanuman’s embrace, Bhima’s strength also increased. Hanuman wanted to free his brother Bhima from his ego and to give him greater strength to fight his enemies.
Sunder Kand is the story of Hanuman finding Sita. The most important character for this chapter is of Hanuman’s.
After Jambvant praised and advised Hanuman, he started his journey to Lanka. Mainak came forward to offer some rest, but he declined.
On his way, first came Sursa. She was asked to test Hanuman’s skills and wisdom. She said that everyone has to pass through her mouth before one can resume its journey. Hanuman first enlarged his size.
Sursa and Hanuman
In reply, Sursa also increased her mouth. Suddenly he reduced his size and entered her mouth and came out of her nose. Sursa blessed him for his skills. By using his wisdom, he proceeded further.
Sinhika and Hanuman
Soon, another hurdle appeared. A demon caught his shadow. The demon was Sinhika. Hanuman had to overcome her before he could proceed. She managed to swallow him, but soon enough, he killed her and restarted his journey towards lanka.
Hanuman reaches the shores of Lanka. He found that many demons are guarding Lanka. He decides to enter lanka in night but ran into Lankini. Hanuman hit her hard. Lankini understands that end of Ravana is near as she was told by Brahma that when a monkey is cause of her pain, then it is about time. She praises his devotion towards Lord Rama.
Hanuman hits Lankini
Hanuman then searches for Sita in Lanka. He even checked Ravana’s palace.
Then he came to another palace, which was Vibhishan’s. He met him. Vibhishan told him about Sita whereabouts. He goes to Ashok vatika and observes Sita.
At the same time, Ravana came there and threatened Sita with dire consequences, if she refuses to marry him.
Trijata named demon consoles Sita. She said that she had seen in her dreams that end of Ravana is close. But Sita is still perturbed.
Hanuman then dropped the ring given by Lord Rama before Sita. Sita becomes happy by seeing and recognizing the ring of Lord Rama.
He then came before Sita and explained how he has come to lanka and ashok vatika. He pacifies Sita that Lord will come soon and then it will be end of all the problems.
With permission of Sita, Hanuman then ate fruits from Ashok Vatika and uprooted many trees.
He killed many demons including Akshaykumara. They went to Ravana for help. Ravana sent his warriors but they were defeated by Hanuman. Finally, Meghnaad used Brahmastra and used Nagpaash to tie him.
Meghnaad then brought Hanuman to the Ravana’s court. Hanuman told Ravana to return Sita to Rama and live in peace. Instead, he asked to burn his tail so that a lesson can be taught to him. Hanuman made his tail become bigger. Lot of oil and clothes were required to cover the tail. Finally the tail was set to fire. Hanuman used laghima and became small. Lanka is thus burnt.
Hanuman returns to Sita and seeks permission to go back. Sita gives her ornaments and requests them to be presented before Lord Rama.
Hanuman heads back to Kishkindha.
He meets Rama and Laxmana and tells them the whole story.
Then, Rama, Laxman and Hanuman, meet Sugriva and decide future course of action.
After knowing the whereabouts of Sita, Rama sets out to free her. He is accompanied by Vanara Sena.
Demons report this to Mandodari. Mandodari reasons with ravana as Hanuman, the messenger of Rama has done so much damage. Pregnant demons suffer from miscarriage when they think of Hanuman. So this is not wise to keep Sita. Ravana does not heed to the advice.
Even Vibheeshana, brother of Ravana, persuades Ravana. Ravana insults him.
Vibheeshana meets Rama and requests for his companionship. Rama accepts him as his friend.
Ravana sends his spy to Rama’s abode. Shuka, the messenger, was captured and Laxman releases him with a letter to Ravana.
Rama requests Sea to give him way. When the sea does not listen, Rama intends to use Brahmastra. The Sagar yields and advises to consult Nal and Neela to find a way to Lanka.
Do you know that Jambavant has seen a number of avatars (incarnations) of Lord Vishnu. He even got his daughter married to Shri Krishna and there is an interesting story of his fight with Lord Krishna. You can find this story on this blog.
The Sankat Mochan mandir is situated in the holy city of Varanasi. The legend is that this temple was established by Tulsidas, the great poet, who wrote Ramcharitramanas.
This temple is dedicated to Lord Hanuman, whose other name is Sankar Mochak, which means reliever of troubles. As per the Vedic Astrology, Lord Hanuman defends and liberates human being from the wicked effects of ‘Shani’ (Planet Saturn). All those, who have ill-placed Saturn in their horoscope, should offer homage at this temple to get relief from the distress. In the earlier times, the temple was very small in its size. Later, the temple complex was extended attributable to the kind donations made by the devotees.
Every Tuesday and Saturday, thousands of devotees queue up in front of the Sankat Mochan temple to offer prayers to Lord Hanuman. According to Vedic Astrology, Hanuman protects human beings from the anger of planet Saturn and those who have ill placed Saturn in their horoscope visit the Sankat Mochan temple to get remedy. People put “Sindoor” on the statue and offer “laddoos” to Lord Hanuman. The “Sindoor” or Vermilion, from the statue of Lord Hanuman is put on the foreheads of devotees.
Festivals celebrated at Sankat Mochan Temple
On the day of Kartik Krishna Chaturdashi, special prayers are made to the Lord Hanuman. An annual festival is also observed on the full moon night of the month of ‘Chaitra’, which is also known as Hanuman or Mahavir Jayanti. At this juncture, a procession is taken out in the streets of Varanasi. The festival too, attracts plenty of visitors to Sankat Mochan Temple.
Durga temple is very close to this temple and on the day of Mahavir Jayanti, a special procession which starts from the Sankat Mochan mandir ends at Durga mandir.
The current temple structure was built in early 1900s by the educationist and freedom fighter, Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya.
One of the most famous Hanuman temple in country. The unique fact is that this temple houses two statues of Hanuman, one is believed to protect the good souls (paritranay sudhunay) and the other to eliminate the bad ones ( Vinashayati cha dushkritam).
Historically, this temple belonged to ramanand sect but from 1900, it was in the control of gosain sanyasis. in 1948, Patna high court declared it as a public temple.
The current beautiful and grand temple was constructed in mid 1980s under the patronage of Kishore Kunal. This temple is very close to patna railway station.
This temple has three floors, ground, first and second. The ground floor contains the idols of Hanuman jee.
First floor has Lord Rama’s temple. Shri Krishna’s delivering Shrimadbhagwadgita to Arjuna is also portrayed here. Goddess Durga is also present on this floor. Lord Shiva, Parvati and Nandi are also present here. Shiva linga is also available to enable Rudrabhishek.
The floating Ram-setu Shila is also placed on this floor only. It has been kept in a glass container and is revered by the people. The volume of this stone is 13,000 mm, while the weight is approx. 15kgs.
On the first floor, while crossing Dhyanmandap, to the left Lord Ganesha and Lord Buddha are available and further on, Lord satyanarayan, Lord Rama accompanied by Mother Sita and Goddess Sarasvati seem to cast a benevolent look on the devotees. In front of this façade of deities, below the Pipal tree, is the temple of Shani-maharaj. This temple, designed in the style of cave architecture, looks beautiful.
On the second floor,this floor is mainly used for ritual purposes. Sanskar mandap is located at this floor only. Chanting of mantras, japa, recitals of Holy Scriptures, Satyanarayan katha and various other rituals are practiced and performed here. The floor also has the pictographic representation of the scenes from the Ramayana.