Saturday, 6 December 2014

206. Hanuman explores the personal buildings of Ravana.

        Hanuman then shook himself and with a great effort took his gaze away from that wonderful viman. The son of Vayu looked around and saw a beautiful tall building and a wide one in the middle of that splendiferous group of houses. That building of Ravana filled with many edifices was about an half Yojana long and one Yojana tall. Hanuman, then moved over there looking for Seetha.  He then noticed a lovely building which Hanuman correctly presumed as the house of Ravana. Near that house there were elephants with four tusks. Then he noticed that there were elephants with three tusks, and  with two tusks, too. They were positioned so orderly in such a manner they did not look crowded. It was protected by soldiers bearing raised weapons. That building housed Ravana's numerous wives (rakshashis and princesses) brought and married  by him, was like an ocean filled with crocodiles, big fishes, sharks and other fishes.    It looked that Ravana's wealth was not in anyway less than that of Kubera or Indra. 
      Hanuman then saw another house in the middle of that cluster of houses, a well built one consisting of many elephants in rut.
      Hanuman then smelled a wonderful sweet fragrance in the wind obviously  from drinks and foods, including cooked rice. That sweet smell seemed to beckon Hanuman to taste the drinks and eats like one relative to his very close relative. Hanuman guessed that the feast must be for Ravana and he started to move in that direction. There he saw an auspicious great hall like a delightfully marvellous woman. That hall was made of stairways embedded with diamonds, decorated with golden windows, with a floor embellished with crystals, with shapes made from ivory in the middle. Well decorated with pearls, corals, silver and gold the pillars were studded with lovely diamonds. Covered by a wonderful large carpet with all the earth's characteristics like rivers, mountains, oceans, forests, etc. painted over, that hall looked like the vast earth together with states and rows of houses. It was resounded by birds in heat, made fragrant by excellent perfumes, hung with most beautiful tapestries.  It was made smokey by the fumes of agallochum. It was a pure one, white like a swan, wonderful by the decoration of flowers, like a divine cow with a great radiance. That excellent hall was causing happiness to heart, destroying sorrow and was as though producing prosperity. Like a mother, that hall seemed to cause satisfaction to all the five sensory organs with all the five excellent objects of the senses.
          Hanuman heaved a sigh and murmured "This is heaven! This is indeed the abode of Devas! This is a city of Indra. This must be the result of a great austerity." Seeing the golden hued lamps being still, as though in thought Hanuman pondered "This building shines not only by the light of the lamps and due to the radiance of the jewellery but also due to the brilliance of Ravana."
      Thereafter on further prying, Hanuman saw a thousand tempting, appealing, attractive etc. women slouching on the rug with clothing of various colours and decorated in a variety of ways. Then towards midnight, those women started to sleep after playing and drinking liquor during night. That sleeping group of women, adorned with jewels which were not making any sound, shone like a great park of lotuses with calm swans and bees. Hanuman saw the faces of those beautiful women, with teeth covered by their lovely lips with closed eyes and with lotus fragrance. At that time, those faces shone like lotuses in blossom during day time now at night looked like lotuses with closed petals. That hall of Ravana shone by those women, glittered like a calm cloudless sky in autumn shone by stars. That lord of Rakshasas surrounded by those women shone like the radiant moon surrounded by stars. Seeing that Hanuman thought "Oh! It seems that all the meteors have fallen down from the sky and have become these women". The luster, complexion and grace of those women clearly resembled great stars which emitted an auspicious radiance. Some of those women with large, thick and disheveled   garlands and their excellent jewels scattered during the time of drinking, dancing etc., looked sleepy. Some others wearing nice earrings with flower garlands that were torn and disturbed, resembled creepers, tread upon by an elephant in a big forest. Big pearl necklaces with the radiance of moon-rays in the middle of breasts of some other women shone like sleeping swans. And of some other women, necklaces made with cat's eye gems resembled birds called Kadambas and for some others golden chains were like Chakravaka birds. Those women with buttocks resembling sand dunes, shone like rivers filled with swans and birds called Karandas and decorated by Chakravaka birds. Those sleeping women shone like rivers with their smiles as flower buds, with golden jewellery as big lotuses.              Auspicious lines of decoration which were on the smooth parts of some other women and on nipples, were like jewellery. Edges of clothing worn by them disturbed by the air from the breathing of some neighboring women, were being fluttered again and again on their faces. Those edges of clothes with various beautiful colours, shone at the base of Ravana's wives' throats like hoisted flags of beautiful shine. Here ear-rings of some beautiful women with a good glory, also moved lightly due to the air from breathing of those women.  Some women of Ravana smelled co-wives' faces again and again imagining them to be one of the faces of Ravana. Those cute women with greatly devoted mind in Ravana, then not being on own will, brought delight only to their co-wives. Some other women slept there, making as pillows their arms decorated with bracelets and beautiful clothes. One woman slept on another's bosom, another woman slept on her shoulder, another woman slept on another woman's thigh and another slept on her breasts. Overcome with heat and friendship, they resorted to thighs, sides, waist and back of one another, with mutual limbs placed on one another. The garlands of women tied with the rope of each other's shoulders shone like a flower garland with dragon flies on it tied in thread. That group of women of Ravana, tied with each other as garland with mixed group of flowers, with beautiful shoulders entwined promiscuously, looked like an exalted garden with a flower garland tied together of creepers in bloom due to the caress of the lord of wind in the vernal in the month of Vaisakha, with entwined beautiful trees. Then it was not possible to make clear the knowledge of jewellery, body parts and clothes of those women even for those used to them. While Ravana slept comfortably, golden lamps shining brilliant, were as though seeing without closing eyes, those women of various glows. There were women of royal sages, brahmanas and rakshashis and of Gandharvas, of Rakshasas - all those unmarried girls surrendered from lust to Ravana. All those women had been collected by Ravana by various means, both honourable and sneaky. However, none of those beauties was acquired by Ravana without her consent. The solitary exception was Seetha, but she was not there. Curiously all the women there were most willing to be captured by Ravana and all of them loved Ravana. There was no woman who had desire in another man, and none of them had any lover before becoming a spouse of Ravana. And there was no wife of his without a good lineage, there was no one with less beauty, no one without any skill, no one without service, none with low intellect and no one without causing desire to lover.
        Hanuman wondered "It would have been good for this Ravana if the virtuous wife of Rama had been left happy with her husband in the same manner as these wives of the king of rakshasas." Hanuman became gloomy and thought  "Seetha is definitely the best by virtues; then this lord of Lanka even though being great otherwise, did an evil and an un-gentlemanly deed with her."

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