CommentariesPrabhandam & Slokas

Raghuveera Gadhyam – 31

GS 61: aprathidhwandhva pourusha! Jaya! Jaya!

(meaning): O Raghuveera of unmatched Valour! Hail to Thee! Hail to Thee!

(Background): the extraordinary heroism of Rama in dispatching two lakhs of foot soldiers of Mula Balam is still very much on the mind of Swami Desikan. He is also thinking about the other heroic deeds such as the destruction of mighty KumbhakarNa. Overpowered by these thoughts, Swami Desikan eulogizes Rama as the warrior whose performance in the battle field can not be matched by anyone.

GS 62: Trayambhaka samadhikha ghorAsthrAdambara! Jaya! Jaya!

(Meaning): O Lord, who has the assembly of arrows that are fiercer than that of Parameswaran himself!

(Background): At the end of the destruction of the Mula Balam, Rama said:

“Yethadh asthra balam divyam mama vA trayambhakasya vA.”
— Yuddha Khaandham 93. 38

Rama was conversing with the assembled SugrivA, VibhishaNa, HanumAn, JaambhavAn, MaindA and DwividhA, who were standing near him witnessing the frenzied fight between the foot soldiers of Mula balam. It is here he said: ” Such wonderful power of using divine missiles exists either in me or in Lord Siva (TryambhakA)”.

Rama’s power in using the mystic weapons was greater than that of Lord Siva and yet he compared himself as equal to Lord Siva out of his generous nature to give credit to others. Further, as a “human being “, he did not want to set an example of just praising himself as being far superior to a God known for his skills in handling virulent asthrams such as Paasupatham.

GS 63: saarathi hrutha ratha sathrapa sAthrava satyApitha prathApa! Jaya! Jaya!

(meaning): O Raghuveera, whose prowess was certified to be true by your enemy RavaNA, when he was led away from the battle field in shame by his charioteer! Hail to Thee!


(Background): RavaNA lost more generals and mighty warriors following the death of his beloved son, Indrajith. He came hence to the battle field once again and there was a mighty battle between Rama and RavaNA.

Displaying unmatchable martial ardour, Rama sent many weapons to put an end to the evil ogre. RavaNA could not cope with the onslaught and became bewildered. RavaNA’s charioteer sensed the danger to which his master was exposed to. He quickly turned the royal chariot of his master away from the battle field to a safe destination. RavaNA was enraged by the well-meant act of his charioteer and chided him. RavaNA acknowledged Rama’s undisputed valour to his charioteer, while berating him for his initative to take him away from the battle field. RavaNa ‘s words captured by Sage Valmiki in the one hundred and fourth canto of Yuddha Khaandham in this context are:

“While my adversary (Rama), whose prowess is widely known, and who deserved to be gratified through feats of valour, stood looking on, myself, who was covetous of fighting was made a coward of by you”.

The key words of this verse of Valmiki are: sathrO: PRAKHYAATHA VEERYASYA ranjaneeyasya vikramai: ” RavaNa then ordered his charioteer to take him back to the battle field.

GS 64: sitha sara krutha lavana dasamukha mukha dasaka nipathana punarudhaya dhara gaLitha janitha dhara taraLa harihaya nayana naLinavana ruchi kachitha kathala nipathita surataru kusuma vitathi surabhitha ratha patha! Jaya! Jaya!

(Meaning and comments): O Raghuveera! You had the path of your chariot made fragrant with the showering blossoms of the celestial Kalpaka tree! That fragrance of the blossoms joined with the beauty of the agitated eyes of Indra, which resembled the assembly of red lotuses in a lotus forest. Indra’s eyes were agitated first with fear over the sight of the falling of the ten heads of RavaNA as they were being severed by your arrows and their immediate reappearance as though nothing had happened. You removed the fear of IndrA by using BrahmAsthram and cut off the evil RavaNA’s head once and for all. That heroic act of yours was appreciated by the celestials and they showered Kalpaka flowers on You, which collected under the path of your chariot and made that path fragrant. Indra, the king of celestials was joyous over the destruction of RavaNA and his eyes lit up with happiness. At that time, his multitude of eyes looked like the assembly of blossomed red lotuses in a lotus forest. Indra has 1,000 eyes according to the PurANAs. When all of them lit up, it was like the multitude of simultaneously blossoming lotus flowers. Swami Desikan salutes here the MahA Veeran,who dispatched RavaNA to the abode of death and made the Devas and their king joyous through his victory over the evil ogre.

GS 66: abhigatha sathamukha huthavaha pithrupathi nirruthi varuNa pavana dhanadha girisa mukha surapathi nuthi mudhitha! Jaya! Jaya!

(meaning): O MahA VeerA who was made happy by the eulogies of IndrA, Agni, YamA, Nirruthi, VaruNA, Vaayu, KubherA and Siva, who approached you at the end of your succesful battle with RavaNA! Hail to Thee! Hail ot Thee!

(Background): VibhishaNA rushed to the side of Sita Devi at AsOkavanam and brought the tidings of RavaNA’s destruction at the hands of her consort. VibhishaNA brought SitA dEvi to the side of Rama in the battle field. RamA harshly asked Sita to prove her innocence by stepping into fire, since he wanted to counter any doubt on the part of citizens over her staying in the stranger’s (RavaNA’s) house for many months. At that time, Indra, Agni, Vaayu, YamA, SivA, KubherA and other celestialsa pproached You, eulogized You and begged You not to abandon the MahApathivrathai SitA and to accept her without any doubt. Swami Desikan says here: “O Maha VeerA! you were pleased wiht the eulogies and appeals of the celestials”.

GS 67: amitha mathi vidhi vidhitha kathitha nija vibhava jaladhi prushatha lava! Jaya! Jaya!

(Meaning and comments): O Raghu Veera! After the eulogies of the celestials, Brahma Devan began to praise your glories. Brahma had limitless intellect and comprehension. Even he could only fathom a very small portion of your vast glories and his eulogy resembled the small drop of a mighty ocean.If this was the fate of BrahmA, there is no need to describe the pitiable plight of other celestials as they attempted to eulogize your kalyANa guNAs. Hail to Thee! Hail to Thee!

GS 68: vigatha bhaya vibhutha paribhruta vibhothitha veerasayana saayitha vaanara pruthanowka! Jaya! Jaya!

(Meaning and comments): Indra’s long -held fear vanished, once RavaNA was killed by RamA in battle. Indra wanted to express his gratitude to You and asked you about what kind of service he could render. You requested him to bring back to life the monkeys, which lost their life in the battle. Indra made that wish come true. The dead monkeys rose up and moved with alacrity like rapidly flowing floods. O Maha VeerA! Is there any limit to Your compassion ?

Sri Raghavam Ramachandram RAvaNArim RamApathim |
Raajiva lochanam Raamam tam vandE RaghunAyakam ||

Sri VaishNava Daasan,

Oppiliappan Koil VaradAchAri Sadagopan

To be continued…

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