– Santhipriya –
The story of ‘Mayil Ravan’ is a very popular folklore which was enacted as street plays in several villages and told as village tales and lores several thousands of years ago. This story has been reportedly told by Maharishi Narada Muni to another sage called Gautama Rishi. The story of ‘Mayil Ravan’, a folklore was carried forward by word of mouth stories for over several centuries and only in the year 1868 it has been published in print form as short story.
Though the main hero of epic Ramayana has been Ravan, the ruler of then land called Langai (now known Sri Lanka) there is no mention of ‘Mayil Ravan’, ‘Satakanta Ravan’ and ‘Vidura Ravan’ in the main text of Ramayan. Though the chronicle of those Ravans are not found in Ramayana or other major texts in mythology, their story is being told for generations in the form of folk lore. This story is also enacted in the form of street plays and puppet shows in the Villages. However, some reference on ‘Mayil Ravan’ is seen in some of the Puranic texts, but there is hardly any reference on ‘Satakanta Ravan’. In the story of ‘Satakanta Ravan’ it is mentioned that it was Sita who went in a Pushpa Vimana (aircraft) to Langai, waged war with Satakanta Ravan and destroyed him.
To honor the solemn promise given to his father, Rama with his brother Lakshmana and wife Sita went in exile and lived in a forest when Rakshasa King Ravan kidnapped Rama’s wife Sita and imprisoned her in Langai. To rescue her, Rama along with his brother Lakshmana took the help of Sugriva’s huge monkey army, constructed a bridge on Rama Sethu ocean and entered into Langai to wage the war. In the fierce battle that ensued between Ravan and forces of Rama, the huge army of Ravan was inflicted heavy loss of weapons and manpower and Ravan was unable to confront the monkey force.
The moral and self confidence of Ravan got completely shattered after he learnt the plight and death of several of his siblings and Rakshas forces. Unable to bear the loss of his siblings and forces, Ravan broke down in front of his ministers. Soon unable to control his emotion, he fainted. Even though Ravan was very strong by mind and heart, he too could not accept the death of his siblings and companion in the battle. As he broke down and cried how would he rule the nation henceforth without his close aides and companions, his ministers consoled him and advised not to lose self-confidence.
The council of ministers consoled him saying ‘Langeswara, if you get demoralized thus, from where will we get strength and courage? You still have huge army of millions of elephants, horses, camels, and other forces. March with them onto the war front roaring like a forest lion. The very look of your huge forces will frighten Rama and Lakshmana who are dependent on the monkey forces and all of them will run away from the battle zone. Do not get disheartened, roar aloud like a lion in the jungle and march to the war zone with confidence’.
Encouraged by their support and advice, next morning ‘Ravan’ marched into the battlefield with brutal forces of millions of fighter elephants, horses and camels and fought ferociously. Alas, still at the end of the day, half his forces were wiped out with the fiercely attacking arrows of Rama and Lakshmana. Dejected Ravan returned to the palace and sat alone when one of his council of ministers called Bragasthan consoled him ‘Swami (highness), do not get demoralized. A war is fought based on three options. The first one is to fight with courage and strength to defeat the enemies, second is to defeat the enemy by deceit, and if both the strategy failed, then the last and third option is to surrender with grace accepting defeat’.
With tears rolling over his cheeks thus spoke Ravan ‘Oh, minister, there is no word of surrender in the life of Ravan ……though my most trusted warrior Lions like Indrajith, Nimkundan, Agamban, Kumbhakarna, who stood shoulder to shoulder with me in life and death have all martyred, my morale to fight has not diminished….my misery now is the vacuum created by those martyred dears and trusted… their sudden demise is agonizing…. my mind refuses to think any other strategy at this hour of grief and tragedy….alas…my mind fails to even think and act in any other manner…. what to do, Bragastha…therefore if you can ….please guide me….please reveal the right strategy to vanquish the enemies’
Bragasthan replied ‘swami, please listen to me patiently…. have you forgotten that one of your cousins in the underworld below ocean is still alive and active?…. have you forgotten that he is mage, master wizard and none can match him in the world of deceit? …Oh, master he is master warrior with abundance mystic and magical powers……why can’t you seek his help and support?’. Even before Bragasthan could finish Ravan stood up quickly shooking head and scissoring his hands seeking details who his forgotten cousin was.
Bragasthan prodded Ravan again ‘your majesty, what is happening within you?… Can’t you not recollect Mayil Ravan your only cousin.…… he is still alive and ruling the underworld below ocean… If he could help you, then the army of the Ram-Lakshmana could be wiped out without a trace….. Once he decides, he will not rest until victory is achieved……… till now no one has born on earth to match his mystic and magical powers … without hesitation please call him quickly …do not wait further’
Cursing himself for weak memory, Ravan’s mind stirred up with the advice of Bragasthan ‘What a shame for me… how did my mind failed to remember Mayil Ravan so long. …doesn’t matter…let by gone remain by gone…. I will seek his help right now’. Mayil Ravan possesses such magic power and instinct that once someone think of him deep in their mind, the feeling would instantly reach his mind.
As Ravan was engrossed with the feelings of Mayil Ravan, instantly Mayil Ravan’s instinct worked ‘why suddenly my cousin is thinking of me? …. what happened to him…..is he in some trouble? Unless unbearable agony, he would certainly not think of me….let me not waste time drawing answers… let me go quickly to meet him’. Like hurricane, in the next few moments he went and stood before his cousin Ravan in Lanka.
No sooner he reached Lanka, Mayil Ravan saw lots of destruction all around…most of the city looks like cemetery….bodies of dead strewn all around…so on…and so on. Without further delay he went to the palace of Ravan to meet him. As custom in those days, he prostrated before Ravan being his elder brother and asked him ‘dear brother, what has happened, why are you sad…. Lanka looks desolated and a ruined city with corpses strewn all over …why…why…what has happened? Warmly welcoming cousin Mayil Ravan, the elder of the two, Lanka Ravan said ‘greetings to you brother….. I have been thinking of you…. King Dasaratha’s one of the two sons who lived in Dandakaranya forest- his name Lakshmana, molested my sister Soorpanaga and heaped insults on her at the instigation of his brother Rama………. To avenge the honor of my sister and to meet out justice to her, I kidnapped Sita, wife of elder of them Rama and imprisoned her here. But one of the Monkey soldiers of Rama which came searching for her whereabouts has caused immense damage to the life and properties of Lanka and ran away. Soon, Rama and Lakshmana invaded Lanka with a huge army of monkey force to rescue Sita and fighting still continues…. half of siblings and forces have lost their lives….. I was pushed to the point of distress, not knowing what to do…..Bragasthan, my counselor reminded about you…..Mayil Ravana, only you can help me in this hour of crisis to destroy my enemies…. Both Rama and Lakshmana are not ordinary humans…they possess invisible strength and power beyond their own….. Since I am unable to guess the protective power which shield them, I presume that they could only be destroyed by deceit or magical power…. only you possess suck skills naturally and immensely…… brother save me my honor further getting humiliated by vanquishing them by some means.
Hearing the plight of his brother Ravan, shattered Mayil Ravan broke down uncontrollably. ‘Oh, brother, you are greatest warrior and veteran in warfare. I am unable to digest your present plight…….oh brother, you could have summoned me much earlier…..nevertheless, tell me how should I help you, I will immediately do it. Uttering thus he got up aggressively, his eyes turned into blood red because of anger.
Ravan hugged him and cried aloud ‘Relax……… relax my brother… do not under estimate the strength of those two brothers – Rama and Lakshmana, I am convinced that they have invisible hidden strength bestowed by some God. That is why they were able to destroy our warrior forces with the simple army of monkeys which have talent nothing beyond jumping from trees to trees. Please work out perfect strategy to destroy them by deceit and your magical powers’.
Mayil Ravan stood unnerved. Instantly he swore on Goddess Kali that he would kidnap and carry them to the underworld after fastening them with magical power, and sacrifice them to Goddess Kali in his palace in the underworld below ocean. Hearing Mayil Ravan roaring, Ravan was pleased because he knew the strength of ‘Mayil Ravan’s mystical power and the divine power of Goddess Kali in aggressive posture as enshrined by Mayil Ravan in the underworld. She was regularly worshiped by Mayil Ravan to gain more and more tantric power. Ravan knew that once sworn on Goddess Kali, neither would rest – either Goddess Kali or Mayil Ravan – till the vow gets fulfilled.
‘Mayil Ravan’ assured, ‘Brother, I will definitely help you in some way or the other. Be sure that those two young bulls will be imprisoned and I swear on goddess Kali that that they would be sacrificed to her in underworld positively and definitely, and that too very soon’. Saying so he returned back to his palace in the underworld below ocean to make preparations for the sacrifice of Rama and Lakshmana. He had to prepare two idols truly matching their appearance, place them before Goddess Kali and perform rites by dropping of blood from his body over those two idols to beget her grace to bring and imprison them at her feet to conclude the sacrifice.
As both Ravan and ‘Mayil Ravan’ were discussing thus, the only daughter of Vibhishana called Tirisadai chanced to overhear their conversation. Already the sudden and mysterious visit of ‘Mayil Ravan’ aroused suspicion in her mind and therefore she hid herself in the room overhearing their conversation. She was upset to know their plans. Goddess Kali whom ‘Mayil Ravan’ worshiped in the underworld below ocean was a ferocious Goddess, who would grant any boon when sincerely worshiped and they planned to sacrifice Ram and Lakshmana to her to win the war. Terrified to hear their plan, Tirisadai thought to herself ‘Oh my god….while Ravan failed to retain my father Vibhishana to take his saner advice on periods of crisis, both Ram and Lakshmana have successfully used his advice to effectively neutralize Ravan’s forces. Beyond the magical and mystic powers possessed by Mayil Ravan, the additional power which he may gain by sacrificing Rama and Lakshmana to Goddess Kali would further add immense and invincible powers to ‘Mayil Ravan’ which he may use to cause havoc to the forces of Ram and Lakshmana after they are sacrificed. Now how could I share this information to save my father along with Ram and Lakshmana? If their plan of these cousins fail to reach my father, then ‘Mayil Ravan’ will certainly annihilate them with the boon derived from Goddess Kali. oh, god, it should be stopped at all cost’.
Tirisadai suddenly saw Lord Vayu flying over the Palace and called him aloud requesting him to come down. Since Lord Vayu could only fly over Lanka, but possessed no other power to save Sita who remained imprisoned in the Palace, she called him down to narrate the entire plan of ‘Mayil Ravan’.
Once Lord Vayu came down, Tirisadai explained him the details of the conversation of the cousins and requested him, ‘Oh Lord, please immediately reach Lanka and convey this message to my father Vibhishana and ask him to work out alternative strategy to counter their plans. Oh Lord, past midnight today, deceiving every one of the guards, ‘Mayil Ravan’ has planned to kidnap both Ram and Lakshmana. This is why I am requesting you to quickly reach Lanka and convey the entire plan of ‘Mayil Ravan’ to kidnap Ram and Lakshmana without further delay’.
Lord Vayu profusely thanked her for the most important message she has passed on and assured that he would in no minute fly over to Lanka and convey the message to her father. In the next few moments he met Vibhishana and told him ‘Vibhishana, carefully listen to this message of your daughter. Midnight today at fifteenth hour ‘Mayil Ravan’ has planned to kidnap both Ram and Lakshmana….he has planned to take them to his underworld below ocean to sacrifice them to Goddess Kali. However, your daughter could not get other details of the kidnap plan as they were talking in hush-hush tone. She has requested you to work out appropriate action to save them from being kidnapped. …….only you can think of a suitable counter plan to save them Vibhishana….do not waste time…. hurry up’. Vibhishana assured Lord Vayu that he would quickly work out a plan to thwart the game plan of ‘Mayil Ravan’. Thereafter he immediately went and meet Rama who was sitting surrounded by Sugriva, Angathan and Neelan, the monkey forces.
Vibishana’s face was sullen and wrinkled all over, explicitly revealing the fear and anxiety in him. Rama asked him ‘What happened to you Vibhishana….why are you looking terribly nervous and upset?’. Shivering Vibhishana whispered into the ears of Rama the action plan of their enemies as conveyed to him by Lord Vayu.
Unnerved Rama told Vibhishana not to be panic even if ‘Mayil Ravan’ possessed enormous mystic and tantric powers. He advised him to openly tell before the monkey forces more on ‘Mayil Ravan’s strength and powers if he knew so that the counsel of Sugriva and Jambavan could also be taken as they may offer better advice. Vibhishana began to tell about the strength and mystic powers of ‘Mayil Ravan’ ‘Oh monkey solders, come on, hear these carefully… all of you who are watching from a distance, please come near and listen to me…. ‘Mayil Ravan’ lives in the underworld below ocean. He is the sole and strongest lord ruling the underworld below ocean. It’s not easy to reach there. In the far wide open ocean, one can see tens of thousands of lotus plants blooming in one small area of the ocean……… one of the stem of the lotuses have a path that lead to his palace. ‘Mayil Ravan’ lives in a palace thickly surrounded by several layers of palaces built of bricks, brass, copper, iron and gold. ‘Mayil Ravan’s palace is built deep inside those layers of palaces, each of which are guarded by millions of Rakshas forces of the underworld. Ravan is cousin of ‘Mayil Ravan’. Do not underestimate his strength as he is mage and wizard, crafty, coon and a perfect schemer. In wink of second he can take any form and deceive all of you smashing your designs and plans’.
Vibhishana continued ‘Listen to me further, Oh monkey soldiers…….. he is master of cheats, perfect in roguery and a vagabond, but he worship the most powerful underworld Goddess Kali Devi with sincerity and honesty and has got several boons from her adding up to his strength and tantric powers. ….. coupled with her grace and boons from that of Lord Shiva, he is able to achieve what he desire. That’s why he has planned to sacrifice both Rama and Lakshmana to Goddess Kali to further please her to derive more strength and power to help his cousin Ravan win the war. Beware, tonight before twelve, if he manages to kidnap Rama and Lakshmana and take them to the temple of Goddess Kali for sacrifice, none will be able to save Rama or Lakshmana thereafter. However, the predictive forecast of bird’s sound and cowrie indicate that Lord Hanuman can still save them. Therefore, go quickly and bring him without delay. Let us take his advice and plot how to prevent the Rama and Lakshmana getting kidnapped’.
Immediately the monkey forces ran heather thither in search of Hanuman and finally traced him. Hanuman fell at the feet of Rama and asked him politely what was the purpose of the urgent call. When their leader Sugriva narrated the entire problem staring at them, Hanuman became deeply pensive and thought to himself that if they can manage to protect Rama and Lakshmana through the night, then ‘Mayil Ravan’s scheme and vow would get destroyed, but what plan to make to ensure their safety?’
Besides Hanuman, every other’s mind too was filled in with the same line of thought. Suddenly Sugriva and Jambavan jumping in joy came out with a wonderful idea that Hanuman should form a fortress like structure around Rama and Lakshmana with his long tail inside which they can stay overnight. If anyone tried to enter the coiled space, they can be butchered. They opined that only Hanuman was capable of building a fortress with his long tail touching earth and heaven.
Hanuman took the challenge in right in earnest and promised to create a fortress like space within few hours to protect Rama and Lakshmana. The fortress formed with continuously laid out tail will have only one point of entrance and exit, i.e entry through the mouth and exit through the ears of Hanuman. ‘Do not worry, nothing will go wrong …. I will do it right now’ proclaimed Hanuman. Hanuman quickly constructed a fort touching earth and heaven all sides well coiled by his tail. Ram and Lakshmana along with eighty million monkey forces too stayed inside the fort. The coiled tail was laid out so tightly that not even an ant could enter inside.
While Rama and Lakshmana were resting, Vibhishana ran here and there alerting the monkey forces lest ‘Mayil Ravan’ will certainly intrude into the palace in some disguise and kidnap Rama and Lakshmana. Not even closing his eye lids for a wink of second, Vibhishana kept alerting monkey leaders like Angathan, Neelan, Jambavan, Kumudan and diverting the monkey guards to those areas and entrances and directions where lack of security was seen. He exhorted them to dance, sing and remain in glee to pass the whole night so that laxity in guarding Rama and Lakshmana can be avoided.
Maharishi Naradha continued to tell the story to Maharishi Gautama ‘Listen to the other side of the story Gautama….. in spite of such a state of alert how ‘Mayil Ravan’ hoodwinked and duped everyone and successfully kidnapped Rama and Lakshmana’.
Inside underworld ‘Mayil Ravan’ convened a meeting of ministers, magic wizards, tantric Brahmins to forecast the favorable climate to begin his mission. He further sought predictive forecast by Cowries and Birds voice (These two forms of predictions are very common in villages). His advisors fearing his wrath, hid the actual fact and falsely predicted that every event indicated favorable climate for his mission, but little did Mayil Ravan know that all those predictions were full of lies to please him. Elated over the all clear signal received, when ‘Mayil Ravan’ began his journey ably supported by four of his colonelcy like Chathuran, Saasthran, Sakala Pravanan and Maya Vinothan, he was stopped on way by his wailing wife Varnamali.
Wailing and whining, his wife Varnamali asked him ‘Dear husband…where are you proceeding at this hour of mid night?’. Hiding anger and disgust ‘Mayil Ravan’ consoled her ‘Dear consort, when a husband proceed on some important mission, will any truthful wife wail and whine shattering his morale? My cousin Ravan from mother’s side has been severely insulted by two humans who has annihilated his siblings and huge forces. My cousin has sought my help to retaliate to recompense the loss of his pride, and as family member I have promised to help him. Will not the insult to my cousin an insult to our family too. In order to avenge the insult and meet out justice, I have vowed to sacrifice those two humans to Goddess Kali and therefore proceeding to kidnap and bring them here. Do not stop your husband proceeding on a pious mission to save the honor of his family’. Varnamali countered him ‘Prannadha (meaning dear husband), please listen to me for a moment patiently……I have heard that both Rama and Lakshmana are no ordinary humans. They are incarnate of divines…… Not one, but many who are aware of the facts vouched so to me. Even when I went to perform puja I was indicated that our cousin Ravan is gripped with bad time, which is why unknowingly he has kidnapped a woman like Sita when she was left in loneliness……. His cowardly act has led to the present crisis leading to the deaths of hundreds of his siblings and destruction of huge forces.
My dear, this is the reason why I stopped you from proceeding on this mission……. unlawful act of your cousin has pushed his own brother Vibhishana to part his company and to surrender to Rama and Lakshmana as he was unable to convince his brother Ravan from not indulging in such unlawful act of kidnapping a hapless woman…… ignoring the saner advice of his brother, arrogant Ravan not only lost the support of his well matured brother, but also paved way for the destruction of near and dear ones around him including the huge forces…. thus the sin committed by him has left him to stand alone with none around to support and console him. This is why I stopped you and to caution you my dear….desist from the mission of kidnapping Ram and Lakshmana who cannot be conquered by you by any means…… kidnapping them will only shower more and more sin on you…. nothing else. I am afraid, you will also meet the same fate of your cousin if you go ahead with this heinous act of deceit’. She held his hands firmly and wailed loudly preventing him proceeding further.
But her plea neither went into the head of ‘Mayil Ravan’ nor fell into the dead ears of those who stood bewildered around ‘Mayil Ravan’ looking at the wailing and whining woman in hate and anger. Ignoring her wail and cries, ‘Mayil Ravan’ ably supported by four of his colonelcy Chathuran, Saasthran, Sakala Pravanan, Maya Vinothan and their huge army commenced his journey. They came out of their palace in the underworld and stood at the edge of the ocean ready for the assault.
‘Mayil Ravan’ asked his commanders, ‘who among you desire to go first to get those two here?’ Chathuran was quick to get up telling ‘my lord, why this question when I am here to bring them after destroying their huge forces in no second. Me be allowed to first go’. Excited by the quick response, ‘Mayil Ravan’ face turned like fully bloomed lotus. He went near, hugged him tightly and bade good bye for completing the task.
Chathuran felt delighted that he was assigned the task first and quickly reached the fortress built by Hanuman with his tail. He looked all around wondering ‘what a wonder this fortress is, fully built with only tail touching heaven above and buried deep inside leaving no space even for an ant to go in. I have never seen such a fortress in my life. Do not know how to enter in since no door is also found’. Puzzled Chathuran rushed back to ‘Mayil Ravan’ and stood before him, head facing down. ‘Mayil Ravan’ asked Chathuran ‘Come on warrior … you went giggling proclaiming ‘will be over in wink of seconds’…. what’s the matter… why are you stooping down?’.
Dismayed Chathuran replied in shame ‘master it will not be possible for us to enter into the fortress’. Hearing Chathuran saying so, Saasthran who was standing by proclaimed ‘shut up Chathuran, if you can’t, then leave it to me, I will do it and show you’.
Saasthran too came back with the same speed, nervous and shocked to narrate in shyness the same message as given by Chathuran. His body was found bruised all over because when he attempted to intrude into the fortress, he was tied in the tail of Hanuman and literally rubbed against ground to the extent that his skin got peeled off at many places and even some of the bones got cracked. He somehow escaped and came here.
The remaining two other warriors- Sakala Pravanan, Maya Vinothan too returned back in the same speed having failed in their attempts and narrated the same experience as others said.
Hearing them ‘Mayil Ravan’ thought to himself ‘There is no use anymore try others, instead I have to directly act with a bit of tactical guile and conjure up with some stratagem or use magical power to enter in’. Asking everybody to remain safe till he returned back, he himself took up the task and went near the fortress coiled with the tail of Hanuman and successfully impersonated himself as Vibhishana.
Quietly he whispered into the ears of Hanuman ‘hey Hanuman, be careful…it is three past twelve midnight… beware. I am constantly inspecting and alerting guards around and inside ……. everything appears to be perfect and fine outside. Let me again go in and re-look the position of security inside…. open up the door for me to enter’.
When Hanuman heard Vibishana’s voice he immediately opened up his mouth to allow him to enter inside. ‘Mayil Ravan’ in the disguise as Vibhishana exited through the ears and entered into the fortress, magically tied the and sedated every one of the guards for few seconds and entered into the room where Rama and Lakshmana were sleeping. Quickly they too were sedated and transformed into the size of thumb with the magical powers bestowed by Goddess Kali. He then locked them in a small box, hid it inside his clothes and escaped by the same route as he entered in the same manner. ‘Mayil Ravan’ safely reached underworld and locked the box with sedated Rama and Lakshmana inside the chest of Goddess Kali.
While going out he whispered into the ears of Hanuman ‘Look Hanuman, everything is fine inside. Ten more seconds are only left before ‘Mayil Ravan’ comes here. Beware and remain watchful. Let me again check security and alert everyone’. Hanuman listened to him carefully believing him to be Vibhishana.
When ‘Mayil Ravan’ proceeded to his palace after successfully kidnapping Ram and Lakshmana, an unknown voice from heaven shouted on way ” You …sinner ‘Mayil Ravan’, do you realize what sin you have committed…is it justified? What do you gain by treacherously kidnapping the divine incarnates of Lord Vishnu? Is it to just please your cousin Ravan whose days of death is numbered …remember Mayil Ravan …by committing this sin you are also fated to lose your Kingdom… your sister Doomradanthi’s son is going to sit in your throne…think for a moment, Oh, idiot of the worst kind, you will see soon what I said will happen if you do not restore the divine incarnates into their places immediately. …. speak to your cousin Ravan and ensure that Sita too gets released from his custody …. both of you surrender to Ram and Lakshmana to ensure honor and glory is retained by you both, lest nothing in universe can stop destiny destroying you “
Mayil Ravan felt the warning of unknown as pouring of molten hot metal into the ears…. alerted by the unknown voice he safely locked the box containing Ram and Lakshmana into the chest of Goddess Kali and simultaneously got both Doomradanthi and her son arrested. He got their hands and legs cuffed tightly, imprisoned them in a well-guarded room, sealed from all four sides so that they cannot move and escape. Only a small hole was kept open to give food while the rest of the walls were fully and thickly plastered with several layers of cement paste without leaving any gap. He was convinced to himself murmuring ‘Let me now see how can he occupy my throne?’
While this was happening on one side, on the other side Hanuman remained calm and confident since he has tightly formed a wall with his tail around fortress where Rama and Lakshmana along with several millions of their soldiers stayed unaware of the fact that ‘Mayil Ravan’ has already kidnapped Ram and Lakshmana and gone. After a while past midnight, Vibhishana strolling outside quietly went and inquired from Hanuman whether all security arrangements made were perfect inside. Surprised Hanuman asked him ‘Hello Vibhishana, only few seconds back you went through my mouth and exited through my ears……..Did you not see what was the position inside? Vibhishana was shocked to realize something serious has already happened and they have been deceived. ‘just a moment Hanuman, let me go inside and check whether Ram and Lakshmana are safe’ nervous Vibhishana rushed inside only to find that both Ram and Lakshmana were missing from their room.
‘Oh, Hanuman we have been deceived by that conman…Both Rama and Lakshmana are missing…hey Hanuman, whom did you allow inside…… Oh, Hanuman, did I not warn you well in advance that ‘Mayil Ravan’ is capable of deploying any trick of any nature and kidnap both Rama and Lakshmana…. and true to it, he has assumed my form and fraudulently entered inside the fortress and kidnapped Rama and Lakshmana…… what to do now…. how to save them” cried Vibhishana. In shock Hanuman too fainted. After a while, relieved from the shock they calmed down and began to discuss how to bring them back safely. Hanuman told Vibhishana that since he has slipped in his duties, he would himself fix the problem and requested him guide him go to the underworld below ocean with a route map.
Vibhishana said ‘Hanuman it is not easy to go to the underworld below ocean. It is very difficult to reach there. There is only one way to enter through the ocean. Deep inside from the shore, you can see millions of lotus flowers blooming, one among them slightly bigger than all other Lotuses. If you can shrink your body and enter into its stem you can reach the underworld of ‘Mayil Ravan’ through the path in the stem. Once you reach the underworld you will first see a burning fortress over which a giant Rakshasa called Machchavallaba guarding it. He is not an ordinary Rakshasa, but very strong than one can imagine. He commands over two and a lakhs of security guards, each one of them well built in their own manner and know several tricks and possess mystic powers. Inside the fort is a water tank from where everyone carries water for performing Pooja. After you cross the water tank you will find several rows of lookalike palaces encircling the main palace where ‘Mayil Ravan’ resides. Since each resemble same like Mayil Ravan’s palace, it will be extremely difficult to locate the palace where ‘Mayil Ravan’ resides as he keeps on changing his residence quite often for the sake of safety’
Hearing the details from Vibhishana, Hanuman decided that he can no more waste time and readied to proceed in search of the underworld. He reached the mid ocean and located the area of the blooming lotuses and found out the single biggest lotus in their midst. He shrunk his body so tiny like an ant that it was quite easy for him to enter into that lotus. Going through the stem he finally reached the land of the underworld where Mayil Ravan lived.
When the Rakshasa guards in the entrance saw Hanuman in monkey form, they were astonished and surrounded him as if they were seeing a unique monkey for the first time in life and attempted to capture him. Hanuman quickly took back his original giant form and counter attacked them ferociously tossing them up and down after tying them in his tail. As the fight raged between the guards and Hanuman, Machchavallaban one of the most powerful Commanders in ‘Mayil Ravan’s forces, specially entrusted with the task of guarding the entrance to the fleet of palaces reached the spot.
Machchavallaban was furious that a monkey was ransacking the whole army, creating ruckus and injuring the guards and therefore angrily challenged Hanuman. ‘Hey monkey if you dare, come and fight with me’. The fight between Hanuman and Machchavallaban continued for a long time resulting victory to none though both fought fiercely shouting…hey…ho… hoo…….hoohu and both frequently fell on ground with blows exchanged in-between.
Tired of fighting, Hanuman wondered ‘I have in seconds smashed all other guards, but why I am unable to even shake his morale and smash him. Who is he so ferociously fighting?’. As both lay on ground for a while unable to get up, frustrated Hanuman asked Machchavallaban ‘Hei…your way of fighting is amazing…. who are you and who are your parents? Even though we are enemies fighting each other, would you mind revealing the secret?’
Machchavallaban replied back ‘Hey monkey…come on…get up and fight…get up and fight ……are you trying to divert my attention unable to continue the fight? Why should I reveal who I am………you are a monkey, the lowest class before humans…come … come and fight’ saying so, Machchavallaban too attempted to get up, but could not succeed and fell down in pain repeatedly as he attempted.
unmindful of his words of venom, Hanuman maintained cool and again requested him with folded hands ‘young boy, whatever you may say, your abuses will not anger me…I may belong to lowest in race or class, I will certainly reveal my class or race later…. if it pleases you, let me admit that I am unable to win over you. I have smashed and butchered many, many in all the three worlds where I fought with many, but I am bewildered to imagine why I remain helpless in defeating you, may be due to my ill fate…Whatever be the reason, I am anxious to know the weakness of such a great warrior like you serving ‘Mayil Ravan’ meekly’
A true warrior will not attempt to kill one who remains confidence shattered. Machchavallaban, originally from divine family, though have come to serve ‘Mayil Ravan’ due to his ill fate, was indeed kind in heart, maintained life in all fairness to the norms of ethics. He knew it is sin to even think of killing one who stand before one with folded hands, because he was not a born Rakshasa or a demonic force to be imbibed with evil thoughts in mind and heart.
Then who was he? Hear as Machchavallaban revealed on self ‘Oh monkey, I feel pity on you. Though it is easier to kill you, my mind prevents me from doing it for reasons unknown to me which actually perplex me. My father was a great warrior of class possessing powers and strength equal to that of the trinities. I have heard that his name was Hanuman and he never uttered a word beyond the sacred name Rama. My mother is a fish named Thimithi. She stayed in the very same ocean which houses this palace in the underworld. I learnt that my grandfather was divine Vayu, and I am Machchavallaban in their sect”
Hanuman was shocked to hear Machchavallaban say so. ‘What nonsense he utters. How can I be his father when I am not even married? How does he claim that my father Vayu is his grandfather? Is he referring to someone else whose name would also be Hanuman, or does my father have another son like me, also named Hanuman? Who is Thimithi whom he tells me to be my wife? Even in Lanka where I went as ambassador to Rama, I maintained absolute virginity avoiding the look of females , uncouth in appearance and half naked in dress. How can I then have a son………? Hey …… Rama … what is happening around me’. Determined he again sought more information from Machchavallaban on his mysterious parents.
‘Get up…. get up my son… do not repeat the same old story of filth again and again …..be honest to tell me the truth on your parents and who the Hanuman is whom you claim to be your father ? where is he now and serving whom? Why did you desert him and come here?’ asked Hanuman.
Enraged Machchavallaban replied ‘Hey monkey, I am not telling lie on my parents, neither is it imaginary story. My father, a minister in the cabinet of monkey Sugriva is working for Rama and Lakshmana’. Unable to digest it Hanuman further prodded him telling ‘Hey child, do you think I am unaware about Hanuman and to believe bundles of lies thrown by you? I personally know Hanuman is a true spinster. When so, how will he have a wife and how would he own a son? In the garb of unraveling your life, do not spill heaps of lies. tell me the truth’. Furious Machchavallaban got up in anger.
‘Hey monkey, don’t test my patience. What do you think? Am I telling you bundle of lies? After Ravan kidnapped Sita and taken her to Lanka, everyone was in search of her whereabouts. My father Hanuman too was engaged on such a mission and flew towards Lanka crossing the ocean. While flying he was profusely sweating and the drops of sweats fell over the ocean. My mother Thimithi who was a fish in the same ocean chanced to keep her mouth open to take a fry when few drops of his sweat fell into her mouth and entered into her stomach because of which she became pregnant and delivered me. Frustrated she left me on shore and went into the ocean. As I was lying on seashore, Lord Vayu saw and recognized me. Immediately he took pity and took me with him. When I wanted to meet my father he advised that meeting my father would sure to happen after his return from Lanka where he had gone to bring Sita …. he counseled patience till he returned back from Lanka….. not to be left, he energized me with enormous strength and power…. monkey, please believe all that I told you on my parents’. As Machchavallaban finished his reply profusely weeping Hanuman replied to him fully charged with emotion.
‘forgive me my son, I am your father, I am your father’ screaming so Hanuman wept before him while Machchavallaban remained in a state of shock and asked ‘You…you …. are you my father?’. Hanuman rushed towards him and hugged him offering kisses on cheek and head and consoling him in several ways. ‘I feel ashamed…. ashamed that I unknowingly gave hard blows on you with this very hand…Is it paining, my son …so sorry…so sorry’. For some time both of them remained exchanging their emotions. After a while Hanuman began to explain Machchavallaban the purpose of his mission to the underworld.
‘My child … hear the news carefully …Ravan, ten headed king of Lanka has illegally kidnapped a hapless woman Sita when she was alone and Sita Devi is consort of my Lord whom I worship. He has not only kidnapped her but also put her in prison. Therefore, to get her released, Ram along with his brother Lakshmana and millions of monkey forces headed by Sugriva went to Lanka and waged a war in which Ravan’s sister, his close relations and decedents along with millions of demonic forces were killed. Unable to face Ram and Lakshmana, Ravan sought the help of ‘Mayil Ravan’ who is your King here. In order to avenge the defeat of his cousin, ‘Mayil Ravan’ with act of deceit, cunningness and magical power kidnapped both Ram and Lakshmana and imprisoned them to sacrifice to Goddess Kali……. is it ethical to kidnap the wife of another, when the hapless woman was alone and further to imprison her? Is it fair under any norms of ethics and justice to support the illegal act of ten headed Ravan and to kidnap Ram and Lakshmana to sacrifice to Goddess Kali to avenge the defeat of his cousin? Therefore, I have somehow managed to come here to get them released from the clutches of ‘Mayil Ravan’. Is it fair on your part to obstruct my act to save two innocents from his illegal and unfair custody?’ emotionally said Hanuman.
Broken down in heart Machchavallaban replied ‘Oh my father, I fully accept your feelings by mind and heart, but look at my real plight since I maintain certain ethics in life. After my mother dropped me on seashore ‘Mayil Ravan’ who was passing that way accidentally saw me. In seconds with his mystic power he read my destiny and unmindful of me a small child, sat before me touching my feet saying, -little child, you are greatest warrior and no one in universe can defeat you. I need a promise from you-, promise from a child and for what, I wondered’.
‘Feeling embarrassed on an elder touching my feet, I asked him, -sir, why are you touching my feet?-, he replied,- ‘my boy, I have all along been looking for a greatest warrior to guard my palace in the underworld which I rule. Since I saw Lord Vayu blessed you, I decided that you are the right person to be entrusted with the task. Please accept my request to guard my palace’-. Accepting his plea, I have come here to guard this palace since childhood. I always live true to my conscience. I have never been hurt or humiliated in any manner by ‘Mayil Ravan’ who is also kind to me and trusting me in all respects. Therefore, I too serve him willingly and wholeheartedly without any hesitation of any sort. How then can I act in breach of trust to ditch a man who has abundance trust and belief on me? Will it not tantamount to immorality in life and deviating from the path of righteousness when I have swallowed salt from his palace till now?’ Both were right in their own manner in their loyalty to their lords and therefore they began to search for alternate plan of action.
After deliberating various options Machchavallaban finally told Hanuman ‘if father is shamed, the shame falls on his child too…… I will not be able to go back from my promise given to ‘Mayil Ravan’ which if I break will be nothing less than sin of highest order…. I can not therefore reveal the secrets and the weakness of ‘Mayil Ravan……you have been able to intrude through the stem of the lotus to reach here after annihilating over two and a half million Rakshasa forces. However, you will not be able to succeed here till I am alive due to the powerful boon I got from my grandfather Lord Vayu. Therefore, I suggest an alternative to intrude into his palace’. He was silent for a while and continued, “My biotic (soul) is in the center of my chest. Slog over the chest brutally and I will immediately faint and will not be able to recover back for a long time within which period you can enter into the palace, complete your mission without resistance from me and go away’. As Machchavallaban said so, tears rolled over the cheeks of Hanuman.
‘Hahaa…what an idea you have offered….my son, I do not know what to do? How can a father kill his own son who practice higher ethics and morality in life? … will it not cause unbearable agony in one’s father for ever?”. Machchavallaban replied ‘Father this is not the right time to debate on ethics and morality which will not solve the problem. what is required is action since ‘Mayil Ravan’ would have by now commenced the rituals to sacrifice Ram and Lakshmana to Goddess Kali….do not delay or remain confused …punch heavily on my chest with your fist. I will certainly not die but will remain only unconscious for next fifty few hours. Act quickly and proceed to save Ram and Lakshmana”. Soon as Hanuman firmed up his mind and landed a big blow on the chest of Machchavallaban with his tight fist. Machchavallaban fell on the ground unconscious.
He will not wake up for the next fifty hours. Unconscious Machchavallaban too thought to himself ‘Let Hanuman rescue Ram and Lakshmana before I regain conscience. When my father returns back with I will seek their blessings to get freed of all the sins that I have committed so long’.
When Hanuman entered the fort after pushing Machchavallaban to the state of unconsciousness, he realized that it was the first of defense fort built with bricks guarded by over four lakh Rakshas forces. For a moment Hanuman stood confused and scared as to how he can eliminate such a huge army alone? However, as he saw a huge tree adjacent to the wall of the Fort, he took a giant form, uprooted it before the Rakshasas could attack him and began to attack the hordes of Rakshasa forces ferociously with the same tree and in seconds half the forces lay dead on ground. The other left out forces came flashing swords and axes, but in seconds they too met the same fate by the ferocious attack by Hanuman. Next came waves and waves of fighter forces consisting of sixty million elephants, sixty million horses accompanied by several hundred millions of horse riders and foot soldiers. Hanuman deriving unknown strength and power held the giant tree tight in hand, and attacked them from several sides and destroyed the entire fleet in no minute. After vanquishing all those who attempted to stop him, Hanuman crossed that fort only to see next line up of Forts build of brass metal, guarded again by millions of Rakshasa forces of many kinds carrying variety of arms and ammunition.
Even that was well guarded by millions and millions of Rakshasas forces with several lethal arms and ammunition and Hanuman had to encounter them. In wink of a second Hanuman pounced on them and thrashed them to ground tearing their body to pieces after which as he entered into the next fort which was found built of copper. Surprised Hanuman saw the fort held by over twenty thousand forces. He slowly moved like a cat and jumped in the midst of them after taking gigantic form. Hanuman cannot normally take the gigantic form and only rarely he can take on need basis provided the need was genuine and gigantic form absolutely necessary for welfare of everyone. Hanuman was tired in one way as he had fought with huge force earlier and therefore to resist the forces to go in gigantic form was the most needed one now. Thus he took the gigantic form and began to fight.
After destroying the forces when Hanuman entered the next fort it was seen built of brass, again guarded by eight million Rakshasas. He destroyed them in his own manner and became completely exhausted because of continuous fight. Next was the fort made of thick lead metal guarded by sixty million forces who were also destroyed by him in seconds. Similar was the fate of those enemies guarding the next fort made of coral which too fell in the hands of Hanuman. At a distance Hanuman saw the palace made of Gold.
Hanuman was amazed to see the Golden palace built far away from the Coral fort. ‘Mayil Ravan’ lived there and the temple for Goddess Kali was also indeed there inside surrounded by huge park filled with tall trees, greeneries and other plants. Hanuman reached the palace and sat in one of the tree top to avoid getting detected. Hanuman could easily realize that the fort has been well guarded by tantric forces and yanthras made with magical powers found hanging all over. Hanuman recalled the advice of Machchavallaban who sounded him word of caution once he reached the last fort made of Gold as anyone who go near it would lose half their physical and mental strength because of the magical and tantra powers imbibed in each inch of the land inside. Perhaps the warning was true as Hanuman could easily sense that he had already partly lost his strength because of those tantric and magical traps laid there. He began to work out a suitable strategy to counter getting trapped inside those magical powered field.
He saw group of guards coming out from the Coral fort, performed routine security check up and went back inside fully satisfied that the house was in order. Once they went back Hanuman slowly got down from the tree and marched towards the fort like a cat.
Since the entire place was embedded with mantric powers that will reduce the powers of anyone illegally intruding, Hanuman too self-realized that he has indeed lost some strength, but at the same time those guards guarding the fort were tied with counter mantric power wrist bands to ensure that their strength does not diminish in the mantric field. As Hanuman was pondering how to break all those barriers and enter in, another important event was happening inside the Palace of ‘Mayil Ravan’.
‘Mayil Ravan’ who was asleep with his wife suddenly woke up mid night to realize that only five more hours were left behind to complete all rituals to sacrifice Rama and Lakshmana to Goddess Kali. Since the water needed for the ritual has to be only brought by his sister as prescribed for the ritual, he asked the guard to go and bring his sister Doomradanthi who was in prison. Once she came he gave her a Golden pot and asked her to go to the sacred tank named ‘Uththiyaana tank’ to bring water from the tank for the ritual.
Doomradanthi thought to herself ‘so long he has kept me and my son fully chained…why has he called me now?… perhaps he is going to sacrifice me and my son to Goddess Kali…… Let anything happen…. instead of slowly meeting death in chains it is better to die quickly’. ‘Mayil Ravan’ was mind reader and quickly read her thoughts to tell her the following. ‘Hey, Doomradanthi I need simply wink of a second to sacrifice you both by cutting your necks with my sword. That is not my intention. First I need to sacrifice Ram and Lakshmana to Goddess Kali…. go and quickly bring water in that pot’.
Shocked to hear Doomradanthi shivering all over began to wail and cry saying, ‘Oh, brother, are you going to sacrifice Ram and Lakshmana to Goddess Kali? Please don’t do such a sin…. why are you involving in this act of sin?’ Furious ‘Mayil Ravan’ shouted back ‘Hey…Doomradanthi, do what I say, lest I won’t kill you, but will only cut your son’s body to pieces with my sword’
Doomradanthi became nervous over the thought of losing her son and pleaded ‘Please brother don’t do it…. if you desire, kindly kill me along with him’. Losing patience ‘Mayil Ravan’ again shouted back ‘Hey…first go and quickly bring water from the tank’. No way to argue further, Doomradanthi carrying the golden pot in her hand went and sat under a tree in the garden where the tank was situated. Wailing and sobbing she murmured ‘My god, why are the two divine souls fated to be treated like this………. why am I being used as instrument to commit this sin? …………why is my brother indulging in such a heinous act? To whom can I go and pour my woes……where is the monkey which guarded the brothers gone?…can it not now come here and save Ram and Lakshmana…if I refuse to cooperate my brother will kill my son…what to do?…what will I do…’
Hanuman hiding on top of the tree could not understand reasons of her cries, his main concern was to somehow enter into the fort. Unless he goes inside he cannot rescue Ram and Lakshmana. Suddenly on unknown reasons Hanuman’s mind thought that the lady may not be treacherous or bad and if she can be won over, he can successfully get the inner secrets and therefore spoke to her from tree top in unknown voice, only audible to her.
He said ‘Look here, destitute woman, why are you crying unnecessarily. If you agree to help me in my mission, not only you can be saved from getting chained in prison, but also your son can be saved by a ploy’. She became suspicious that ‘Mayil Ravan’ could have enacted this ploy to gauge her feelings and ignored the unknown voice and stepped in to the tank to carry water in the golden pot. Utilizing the opportunity, Hanuman quickly jumped down, went near her and whispered, ‘Madam, do not get panicky. I am the same Hanuman whom you have been thinking a while before and who spoke to you in unknown voice. I have come here to save Ram and Lakshmana. Kindly tell me where they are kept? I want to rescue them…please quickly tell me the place where they are kept imprisoned’.
Panicky lady asked him ‘Oh monkey, how are you speaking in human voice? Did ‘Mayil Ravan’ sent you to test my integrity?’. Hanuman remained unnerved and consoled her saying ‘Madam, I swear before God that I am the same Rama Doodah Hanuman who has come here to save them…. please believe me since you also appear to possess certain ethics in life. I am in search of ‘Mayil Ravan’ and the place where Ram and Lakshmana has been held…quickly tell me the place’.
She still suspected him to be the agent of ‘Mayil Ravan’ and repeatedly asked him ‘Monkey, I still doubt that you are agent of ‘Mayil Ravan’ who has sent you to test me…. how are you able to speak in human voice while you remain a monkey? If you are real Hanuman, come on, show me your giant form which can only be shown by real Hanuman’.
Hanuman replied “lady, though you are born a demon, still I find you to possess good qualities. I can talk not only in human voice, but I am master in sixty-four languages. I can even understand the language of animals, birds and ants and have no time to explain you everything now. My priority is to save Ram and Lakshmana…please tell me where they have been hidden’. Even then when Doomradanthi hesitated to believe him unless he proved to her that he was the messenger of Ram and Lakshmana, Hanuman had no other option but to show his real form. She immediately fell at his feet and sought pardon and began to narrate her story to him.
‘Hanuman, please pardon me first and hear my story. One Kaladaththan was my husband. ‘Mayil Ravan’ who is my own brother killed him and imprisoned me with my only son Neelamegan and chained us tightly to prevent our escape. Once my husband was true body guard for ‘Mayil Ravan’ and helped and guided him in all aspects. Their closeness knew no bounds and without each other’s knowledge the other will not act”.
‘When Neelamegan was born to me ‘Mayil Ravan’ too got a daughter by name Roopavathi. It was proposed that both of them should get married to each other. As the ceremony of engagement for the marriage was underway, an unknown voice shouted from heaven ‘you fool ‘Mayil Ravan’ don’t feel elated over the engagement ceremony being held…soon you are going to die because of this marriage and Neelamegan will take over your ruins in the underworld’. Hearing the unknown voice ‘Mayil Ravan’ immediately stopped the engagement ceremony and drove us out of the Palace’.
She continued ‘On way after he kidnapped Rama and Lakshmana, another unknown voice screamed to ‘Mayil Ravan’ ‘Haray…. fool…. your act of kidnapping the divine incarnates of Lord Vaikundar is going to ruin you….’Mayil Ravan’, your end is fast coming…. your effort to help your cousin Ravan is going to end in vain as both of you are sure to lose your kingdoms very soon…your sister’s son is going to sit on your throne…. you are sure to witness this truth…. go …fool…go…’
‘When a second unknown voice warned ‘Mayil Ravan’, he got panicky, called us to his court and mercilessly chopped of the head of my husband in front of us and attempted to kill my son when I begged him to show mercy to his sister and leave her son alive. Therefore, he imprisoned me with my only son and tortured us by chaining with a ton weighing steel chain disabling our movements. But today he compelled me to bring a pot of water for the ritual so that the sin of having brought the water for the ritual to sacrifice them to Goddess Kali will befall on me without the sin of sacrifice afflicting on him in any manner. Once the sacrifice is done, he said he would also kill and bury me along with them’.
She further took a promise that after Ram and Lakshmana are rescued, she and her son should also be released from the clutches of ‘Mayil Ravan’. Hanuman gave a solemn promise by touching her palm that once he gets the release of Ram and Lakshmana and kill ‘Mayil Ravan’, he would ensure that Doomradanthi and her son would also be released from their captivity. Hanuman asked her ‘I will certainly keep up my promise……. please quickly tell me the whereabouts of Ram and Lakshmana along with ‘Mayil Ravan’s hideout’
Doomradanthi revealed the details of the mysterious objects hanging at the entrance of the palace where they were held captive ‘Hanuman…please do not under estimate the strength and magical powers of ‘Mayil Ravan’ who has obtained them from Lord Parameshwara himself to save his next three generations…once you reach the entrance, the mysterious Yanthras called ‘Thula souls’ which has been positioned there inbuilt with enormous magical powers to look into and reveal whether you are an enemy or friendlier to ‘Mayil Ravan’ and alert the guards…if an enemy intrude, those magical yanthras will suck all their strength and powers to help twenty million guards who will appear in the next few wink of eyes to kill the enemy…therefore you must be very cautious’
Hanuman requested her to give some clues as to how he can negate the powers of the yanthras to enter in. ‘madam…please tell me a way out to enter into the fort negating detection of those yanthras ……… once I move behind the yanthras and enter into the fort, nothing will affect my full energy, power and strength to conquer every one inside’. Doomradanthi could not offer any solution and simply said ‘all that I have been ordered is to fill this pot with water, keep a bunch of mango leaves over it and take it to the place of sacrifice. …only you have to find a way to enter in’.
Immediately Hanuman worked out a strategy. He transformed into a small bug and sat inside the bunch of the mango leave which Doomradanthi placed on the pot filled with water. She carried it on her head and went inside the fort. At the entrance the Yanthras immediately detected that enemy has come there and alerted the guards.
Responding to the alertness the Rakshasa forces rushed towards the entrance. Immediately Hanuman alerted Doomradanthi and she too was quick to respond him and enacted a drama as if she fell down with the pot of water at the entrance. The bunch of mango leaves with the pot of water too fell inside the fort and water spilled on the ground. Once fell inside, Hanuman came out of the bunch of leaves and took giant form and attacked the Rakshasas ferociously killing the entire forces in few seconds. The celestial who were watching the scene were elated at the happening and gained confidence that Hanuman was sure to rescue Ram and Lakshmana.
Doomradanthi who was watching the entire fight from a distance was also elated. She ran to Hanuman and warned him, ‘Hanuman, two skillful and forceful lieutenants are guarding the entrance of the Kali temple. They are called Katagan and Viruchimugan. If you kill them half your work will be over. See those two houses where they live’. Once she showed the residences where both Katagan and Viruchimugan lived, she hurriedly left the place for fear of ‘Mayil Ravan’ who if happens to see her talking to Hanuman, she will be instantly killed along with her son without any remorse.
Hanuman in a flash of second entered into the houses of both Katagan and Viruchimugan and tied them with his tail and started crushing them to death. While they were attacked by Hanuman, Viruchimugan pleaded pardon and showed him the palace where ‘Mayil Ravan’ was hiding and in the melee Katagan managed to escape.
Hanuman then called Doomradanthi and with her help reached the cell where her son was kept imprisoned and rescued him. While he was being rescued, Doomradanthi’s son got nervous and started crying ‘Oh, my god, the agent of ‘Mayil Ravan’ has come here to take me to the temple of Kali for sacrifice…please…please save me….’. Hanuman consoled him and assured that he had reached there along with his mother Doomradanthi to save his life and to put him on throne in place of ‘Mayil Ravan’. Doomradanthi entered the room and told her son ‘Neelamegan from today we are free birds. The agent of Rama and Lakshmana has come here to save us. Come out quickly before ‘Mayil Ravan’ reaches here to kill us’. Joyed on seeing his mother, Neelamegan hurriedly walked out with her.
Both son and his mother fell at the feet of Hanuman and pleaded ‘Hanumanji, please save us from Mayil Ravan because if he ever find us, he will not hesitate to instantly kill us. Hanuman assured ‘forget fear of him any more… do not worry……whenever you get into trouble, call me loudly and wherever I am I will reach the spot to save you’ After blessing them Hanuman began his next journey to the temple of Goddess Kali.
As these were happening outside, ‘Mayil Ravan’ was in sensual pleasure with his wife in his bedroom. He was hurrying her up telling ‘Hai…pleasure queen, I have sent Doomradanthi to fetch water for the Pooja. It may take some time for her to return back. Therefore, let us quickly finish love game before she comes back’.
By the time Hanuman reached the locked entrance of Goddess Kali temple ‘Mayil Ravan’ had already left to take bath in a faraway water tank inside the underworld. Hanuman realized that it may take longer time for him to come back to the temple for sacrifice and therefore prayed ‘Goddess Kali Devi, you are incarnation of Goddess Parvathi…… Please forgive me for break opening the door to rescue Ram and Lakshmana who are divine incarnates of Lord Vaikunta’. Saying so he hit the door hard with his head and fist to break it open.
Before entering the sanctum of Goddess Kali, one had to cross through several halls and chambers each built with thousand pillars, some of them slippery due to coat of special oil, some halls built of diamonds, some with precious stones etc and Hanuman quickly crossed them to reached the sanctum of Goddess Kali. Her appearance was terrible, gruesome and fearful and appeared as if she was eagerly waiting for more and more sacrifices to satiate her hunger. A small box was found kept before her idol.
Hanuman had already known through Neelamegan that both Rama and Lakshmana were kept inside the locked box placed before Goddess Kali. Therefore, Hanuman had no difficulty in identifying the box. When the box was broke open, he was shocked to find both Rama and Lakshmana were lying in a state of unconsciousness. He shook them to see whether they were alive or not and began to chant several verses praying divine interventions to save them and to awaken them. Finally, the chanting of mantras worked and Ram opened his eyes and saw Hanuman.
Ram asked him how did he come there and why were they kept tied in the box. Though he attempted to get up, he could not because of the magical mantra knots placed around them. Hanuman with tears in eyes told him ‘Hey Lord Rama, kindly remain inside the box safely till I kill ‘Mayil Ravan’ and come back to release you. He has tied you with the magical powers and at the moment I am unable to release you………. Don’t worry my Lord…… soon I will be back killing him to unknot the magical knots placed around you and rescue you both’.
Soon Ram closed his eyes again as he could not keep his eyes open for a long time due to the powers of mantra knots put around him by ‘Mayil Ravan’. Hanuman prostrated before Goddess Kali hundred times and prayed for the safety of Ram and Lakshmana, took away the box to a faraway place to safely hid it inside a cave in a mountain called Anganamirukkaa in the underworld below ocean.
Since the mountain was also inside the underworld below ocean, Hanuman could not carry them through the stem of flower Lotus unless ‘Mayil Ravan’ was killed. Therefore, Hanuman had no other option but to hide them inside the underworld itself.
Hanuman prayed to Goddess of earth Bhooma Devi to keep them safe in her custody till he returned back after killing ‘Mayil Ravan’. Thereafter He has to also arrange for the rescue of Goddess Sita imprisoned in Asoka Vana in Lanka. As if she complied to his prayer, Goddess of Earth Bhooma Devi opened up a small space in her and when the box with Rama and Lakshmana fell in the pit, the space got closed with the box got trapped inside as though it was kept in a tightly guarded almirah for safe custody.
As these were happening on one side, Katagan who escaped from Hanuman reached the Palace of ‘Mayil Ravan’ and woke up with loud scream the twelve thousand crores of body guards sleeping over the deadly weapons kept hidden under their body. He rushed to the room of ‘Mayil Ravan’ too and woke him up screaming ‘Master, an important message to you…. please get up quickly, lest the monkey will come and destroy all of us’.
Once ‘Mayil Ravan’ came out of the room where he was enjoying with his wife, Katagan narrated him details of every destruction caused by Hanuman and continued ‘Swami, please hear this message too. After destroying every one, the Monkey rushed towards the Goddess Kali temple…do not know why it has gone there’. Shocked ‘Mayil Ravan’ immediately rushed to the temple site of Goddess Kali to check whether the box in which Ram and Lakshmana were kept imprisoned was safe. Alas, the box was found missing and ‘Mayil Ravan’s heart blew to pieces in shock.
‘Mayil Ravan’ screamed ‘Katagan, the monkey has taken away the box in which Ram and Lakshmana were kept locked. Doomradanthi would have only helped the monkey reach this place because I sent her to fetch water from the water tank. I do not know whether Goddess Kali has also left with the Monkey because her face in the statue appears dull and lifeless. Let us quickly go and trace Doomradanthi and kill her first’. As ‘Mayil Ravan’ proceeded badly injured Katagan joined him with a huge force of guards to escape the wrath of Hanuman.
Katagan ran back from the house of Doomradanthi in the same speed he went and reported to ‘Mayil Ravan’ ‘Prabhu, the monkey is discussing something with Doomradanthi and her son. All the three are inside her house’. ‘Mayil Ravan’ immediately dispatched ten thousand fierce fighters to kill the Monkey. The force carried deadly weapons and marched to Doomradanthi’s residence. Short while thereafter only ten guards came back alive while all others fell dead in fight with Hanuman. ‘Mayil Ravan’ dispatched two more groups of forces one after the other led by Kathasimhan and Vidya Simhan and they too lost their lives along with their huge forces.
Realizing not to delay any further, Hanuman decided to go in for direct fight with ‘Mayil Ravan’ and came out of the house and ran towards the residence of ‘Mayil Ravan’. On way he met stiff resistance from the expert commanders of ‘Mayil Ravan’ like Katagaroman, Kalatheshan, Ugrasenan, Vagrasenan, Theera simmavan, Vembulian, Sambulian and fleet of other forces each consisting of lakhs of soldiers, but each and every one of them fell dead in the fierce fight with Hanuman. ‘Mayil Ravan’ decided that the time had come to fight with Hanuman directly and therefore led by huge forces marched towards Hanuman with intent to kill him.
Backed by fleet of horses jumping and parading on both sides, violently screaming forces shouting ‘haai…. hoi…haai…hoi’ ‘Mayil Ravan’ sprayed several lakhs of arrows like violent rain, but Hanuman broke the entire arrows in no minute into pieces. The fierce encounter went on for a long and ‘Mayil Ravan’ recalled ‘Oh, my wife Varnamali cursed me that my end was nearing… will it happen so? …what is this…this monkey is simply disarming us in no minute’. For the first time ‘Mayil Ravan’ felt the trace of fear looming large in his mind.
The fight reached the stage of fighting face to face, both hurling blows on each other. Hanuman pushed ‘Mayil Ravan’ onto the ground and tore him to pieces and threw them on all sides. Feeling elated that he finally finished off ‘Mayil Ravan’ a joyous Hanuman began chanting ‘Hey Rama’. Suddenly to his dismay he saw all those pieces of flesh torn and thrown all over raised up and again brought back life in ‘Mayil Ravan’. This exercise went on each time ‘Mayil Ravan’ was killed, who again and again got back his life and continued the fight more vigorously than before thus tiring Hanuman who became worried.
The fight reached no end and worried Hanuman began to think ‘What is going on……every time I kill him; he gets back to his life. Vibhishana has not revealed the secret of his death…. what to do now…. may be Doomradanthi can help’. Feeling so he rushed to her to seek her advice.
Immediately Hanuman got up and tied ‘Mayil Ravan’ with his tail, jumped to the sky and from there he threw him away. ‘Mayil Ravan’ fell on ground several miles far away from the scene. Hanuman knew that ‘Mayil Ravan’ would take much time to come back to fight again within which period he can go to Doomradanthi or her son Neelamegan and seek their advice or to learn the secret on the life of ‘Mayil Ravan’ .
Doomradanthi was unaware of the secret of killing ‘Mayil Ravan’, but she was able to recall into her memory a discussion her husband had with ‘Mayil Ravan’ long ago. She revealed ‘Hanuman, once ‘Mayil Ravan’ sat on tapas praying Lord Brahma seeking boon. When Lord Brahma appeared before him Mayil Ravan got a boon which he had sought. As per the boon in the event of a fight if someone killed him, he would again get back his life within few seconds indirectly implying that he would ever remain alive. Lord Brahma was initially hesitant to give such a boon since as per the Brahman norm the five elements residing in the body will instantly vanish with one’s death and therefore he cannot agree to give such a boon. Upon being denied, ‘Mayil Ravan’ attempted to commit suicide in front of Lord Brahma who stopped him and agreed to modify the boon differently and granted it. As per the modified boon, the real souls of the five elements inside the body of ‘Mayil Ravan’ will remain in the form of five worms and live safely in a cave far away from him. Unless the five elements in the form of worms staying three thousand yojanas miles away from the place where ‘Mayil Ravan’ lived are killed simultaneously, the life of ‘Mayil Ravan’ will not end permanently. Further ‘Mayil Ravan’ will permanently lose his life only when he is kept pushed against the ground by the feet of the killer and simultaneously the five worms are crushed to death by the same killer of Mayil Ravan.
‘Mayil Ravan’ was highly pleased with the boon since nobody can keep him pushed against the ground and reach their hands to crush the worms living in the cave which was three thousand yojanas miles away…. but Hanuman …I am sure except the divines, who else can take such a gigantic form and complete the task’ completed Doomradanthi.
‘The information given by you is enough Doomradanthi………please tell me how to identify the hill where ‘Mayil Ravan’ is hiding ‘ inquired Hanuman. She showed him a shining mountain far away from there where ‘Mayil Ravan’ may be hiding along with the worms. Hanuman thanked her and reached the hill in the quickest possible time. ‘Mayil Ravan’ who was in the meanwhile searching for Hanuman shouted at him ‘Hai, monkey, I have been searching for you so long…. come on…come and fight’.
Hanuman immediately ran to fight again with more vigor. Seeing Hanuman back in war front, ‘Mayil Ravan’ began attacking him. Hanuman deliberately fought with him by running from places to places to divert his attention. In the midst of fighting, Hanuman slowly moved the fight near the cave where ‘Mayil Ravan’s souls were living in the form of five worms. ‘Mayil Ravan’ could not even think that Hanuman was deliberately moving towards the cave where his soul was in the form of worms and felt that Hanuman was running far away out of fear and continued to chase him. In the midst of war ‘Mayil Ravan’ employed several magical powers to distract the attention of Hanuman. Hanuman too was bit worried and confused over the manner in which ‘Mayil Ravan’ deceived and distracted his attention time and again in the midst of the fight. Finally, Hanuman shouted at ‘Mayil Ravan’ thus:
‘Hei ‘Mayil Ravan, all of you including your Cousin Ravan are sinners. Ravan kidnapped Rama’s wife and keeps her in prison in Lanka. You have kidnapped the two brothers Ram and Lakshmana who went to Lanka to rescue her. One will agree if a person who harmed you is punished by you it is ethical, but you are unnecessarily interfering in others affairs where you have no role to play. And fighting for one of them…..what harm did Rama and Lakshmana commit to anger you? ………. you are claiming to adhere to the rules of ethics and morality, where as you are acting contrary to it…… like a coward fighting using mystic and magical powers. If you are confident that you can win over me, you must come open and fight with me. …fool…do not delay anymore and immediately hand over both Ram and Lakshmana in their original form, lest I will crush you against earth and kill all the five worms with this hand”
Though Hanuman had already taken away the box with Ram and Lakshmana in unconscious state and hid it in safe custody of Goddess of earth, why did he suggest ‘Mayil Ravan’ to release them? There was a reason behind it. For several good deeds done earlier, ‘Mayil Ravan’ was destined a birth in Vaikunta (Heaven) So far ‘Mayil Ravan’ maintained doing good deeds except the kidnapping affair and therefore Hanuman wanted to give a last chance to Mayil Ravan to realize and correct his sinful act by agreeing to release Ram and Lakshmana from captivity so that he could retain the chance of entering into heaven after his death.
Now ‘Mayil Ravan’ began to think ‘so long nobody knew the secret of my death…. this monkey has somehow come to know of it…. would Doomradanthi whom I sent to fetch water informed Hanuman?’ ………. he realized that Hanuman had already reached the hill cave where his souls were kept in the form of worms and therefore Mayil Ravan attempted to run towards his palace. Hanuman could read his mind quickly and took gigantic form, went up to the sky and jumped on him pushing Mayil Ravan against the ground. But anticipating such act, ‘Mayil Ravan’ disappeared using magical powers and quickly began a special yagna, his last act called Veerana Yagna which would enable him kill the enemy if yagna ended well. At the end of successful completion of the yagna, a demon would emerge from the flame and destroy Hanuman and Ram- Lakshmana which even Hanuman will not be able to stop.
Hanuman was again confused unable to find ‘Mayil Ravan’. While searching him at a distance he saw some yagna going on, under a huge banyan tree. Hanuman saw a yagna going on with mantras chanted by few gigantic looking Brahman priests who were hurrying up for something. Hanuman thought to himself that since the activities were going on near the Palace of ‘Mayil Ravan’, it cannot happen without his knowledge. Therefore, he transformed himself into a small animal and moved over to the yagna site to watch what was happening.
He was shocked to see yagna going on inside the site with fire lit in a triangle shaped Yagna kund. The pillars tied with heads of blood oozing buffaloes were found all around the yagna site. ‘Mayil Ravan’ wearing wet clothes was pouring ghee in the yagna kund chanting ‘bleem…kleem…om…blum…bom…bom…broom…kilum’ and so on. He cut wound in his hand and poured blood into the yagna fire. In the next few moments a gigantic demon came out from the fire shouting ‘oh…hoohu…hoohu…’. ‘Mayil Ravan’ caught his hand and commanded “go …go and destroy that monkey and others’. The demon responded saying ‘don’t worry master……I will bring the head of the monkey and put it in this yagna kund’ and began chasing Hanuman. Hanuman began to fight with it while the demon spewed fire from its mouth. When Hanuman could not match its strength he prayed to Fire God Agni to save him.
Fire God Agni complied to the request of Hanuman and converted the hot flame into cold wind. Hanuman again went quickly to Doomradanthi and sought her advice to tide over the crisis. She expressed her inability to help him in the matter and suggested him to reach out to the celestial of heaven to take their advice. Hanuman wasted no time in reaching out to those celestial who in turn told him ‘Hanuman you cannot destroy the demon which has come out of the fire, because of the boon it has got from Divine God Shiva. To destroy it you have to first destroy the yagna kund whose power will continue to increase with the passage of each chants of mantras …go and destroy it first…the yagna is underway inside a bunker like slot under the trunk of the huge tree between the Silver and Golden Palace there. Only when you destroy the yagna site you will be able to kill that demon’.
Taking the cue, Hanuman quickly flew to the place where the yagna was going on. But there were thousands and thousands of trees with bunkers like slots, all of them appearing similarly and similar fake Yagnas were seen being held to conceal the real place where the yagna was underway. They were mirror images realized Hanuman. However, he managed to identify the real site and destroyed the yagna kund and thereafter destroyed the demon too. Finding that all his efforts to kill Hanuman failed ‘Mayil Ravan’ with his magical powers disappeared and created one more silver hill in the midst of several silver hills far away from that place and hid in a cave inside the new hill.
Unable to trace his whereabouts, Hanuman again sought the help of Doomradanthi to locate the place of hiding of ‘Mayil Ravan’. She said that ‘Mayil Ravan’ was a big magician with mystic powers and therefore may remain even in invisible form somewhere and therefore they have to search for his whereabouts in that huge area. Hanuman requested her to travel with him to identify the places in those areas and with her help he began searching several hide outs. Suddenly Doomradanthi saw the new silver hill and raised suspicion over it. She informed Hanuman that she had never seen that hill before. When they reached the mountain base, they heard the voices of some chants in air and Doomradanthi identified the voice yo be that of ‘Mayil Ravan’ and immediately hinted it to Hanuman.
Finding the shining hill in the midst of several hills, Doomradanthi said ‘Hanuman, I have never seen it before’. As they reached near the hill, they heard the voice of ‘Mayil Ravan’. Immediately Hanuman smashed the hill to pieces and ‘Mayil Ravan’ hiding inside came out of the hill and began to run away. Hanuman did not allow him to escape and chased him.
With the boons received from Lord Shiva, ‘Mayil Ravan’ took several mystic forms and disappeared from the scene of fight confusing Hanuman. He also deployed very powerful weapons Lord Shiva had given him, but Hanuman too possessed Shivasthra and other weapons like Gajasthra given to him by Lord Shiva and smashed all the weapons used by ‘Mayil Ravan’. The fight continued endlessly when an unknown voice from heaven shouted to Hanuman ‘do not delay anymore, the time has ripened…. kill him fast’.
Hearing the voice Hanuman jumped over the sky and landed over the Chariot in which ‘Mayil Ravan’ was seated. The Chariot broke to several pieces and ‘Mayil Ravan’ fell on the ground. Without waiting Hanuman jumped over him, pushing him against the ground and stretched his hands further and further to reach the cave to take out the worms in his palm and crush them to death thus bringing to end life of ‘Mayil Ravan’.
Before death ‘Mayil Ravan’ chanted unknowingly ‘Hey Vayuputhra, Rama Dootha, Karunakara, Vasuputhra…. please forgive me’…soon his soul departed from his body. A chariot from heaven was waiting and the soul of Mayil Ravan got into it and went to heaven.
Once his mission completed, Hanuman requested Goddess of Earth to return back the boxes in which Ram and Lakshmana lay unconscious. He took the box through the trunk of the Lotus flower, reached over ground and opened it praying to Lord of Wind Vayu to restore their life. In the next few moments both Ram and Lakshmana got back their original form and got up from the box as though they woke up from sleep.
Hanuman fell at their feet and took their blessings. Machchavallaban, son of Hanuman too was waiting there to seek the blessings of Ram and Lakshmana. After he received their blessings he decided not to anymore claim Hanuman to be his father because neither his mother who swallowed sweat of Hanuman to deliver Machchavallaban was seen nor did Hanuman tell the fact to his brother Sugriva who if hear the fact might get annoyed with Hanuman for having hidden the fact from him. Machchavallaban desired that in the eyes of everyone Hanuman should remain a celebrity and a bachelor and therefore decided to go back to the underworld to take over the reins of Mayil Ravan.
Now the job of everyone was to rescue Sita imprisoned in Lanka and therefore they rushed to the war front in Lanka without wasting time. Ravan was fuming and fretting that his Cousin ‘Mayil Ravan’ has also been killed. He cried ‘Oh, what will I do now? When the most powerful ‘Mayil Ravan’ with several mystic and magical powers have been killed, what will happen to me……never bother… when all my siblings have been killed, what use to mourn now… let me go and fight to finish…. after all it will be either I win or I lose’. He proceeded to the war front. At the end of the fiercely fought war, Ravan was killed, Sita was rescued and along with her Ram and Lakshmana followed by fleet of soldiers went back to Ayodhya to take over the reins. As Ram hugged Hanuman and blessed him flowers rained from heaven in a mood of happiness.