Seetha recollects the time limit of two months given by Ravana and her vulnerability of being killed by him. After lamenting for a while, she tries to strangle herself to death with the braid of her hair. At that moment, a propitious omen never seen before appears on her person.
सा राक्षसेन्द्रस्य वचो निशम्य |
सीता वितत्रास यथा वनान्ते |
सिंहाभिपन्ना गजराजकन्या || ५-२८-१
1. saa siitaa = that Seetha; nishamya = hearing; tat = those; apriyam = unpleasant; vachaH = words; raavaNasya = of Ravana; apriyaartaa = tormented by grief; apriyaartaa = tormented by grief; vitatraasa = was frightened; gajaraajakanyaa yathaa = like a tiny female-elephant; simhaabhipannaa = over powered by a lion; vanaante = in the middle of a forest.
That Seetha, hearing those unpleasant words of Ravana, tormented by grief, was frightened like a tiny female-elephant overpowered by a lion in the middle of a forest.
सा राक्षसीमध्यगता च भीरु |
र्वाग्भिर्भृशं रावणतर्जिता च |
कान्तारमध्ये विजने विसृष्टा |
बालेव कन्या विललाप सीता || ५-२८-२
2. saa siitaa = that Seetha; bhiiruH = who was fearful; raakSasii madhyagataa = who was situated in the middle of female-demons; raavaNatayitaacha = and threatened by Ravana; vaagbhiH = with his words; bhR^isham = galore; vilapaapa = lamented; baalaakanyaa iva = like a young virgin; visR^iSTaa = who was left; vijane = lonely; kaantaara madhye = in the midst of a forest.
That fearful Seetha, who was situated in the middle of female-demons and also threatened by Ravana with his words galore, lamented (as follows) like a young virgin who was left lonely in the midst of a forest.
सत्यं बतेदं प्रवदन्ति लोके |
नाकालमृत्युर्भवतीति सन्तः |
यत्राहमेवं परिभर्त्स्यमाना |
जीवामि दीना क्षणमप्यपुण्या || ५-२८-३
3. aham = I; apuNyaa = the impure; yatra = for which reason; paribhartyamaanaa = I was threatened; evam = in this way; jiivaani = am surviving; kSaNamapi = even for an instant; diinaa = miserably; idam = this word; pravadanti = spoken; santaH = by saints; satyam = is true; akaalamR^ityuH = "untimely death; na bhavati = does not come; loke = in this world"; bata = how difficult!.
"Truly the saints affirm that untimely death does not come in the world, as I being impure am surviving even for an instant, though being threatened in this way."
सुखाद्विहीनं बहुदुःखपूर्ण |
मिदं तु नूनं हृदयं स्थिरं मे |
विशीर्यते यन्न सहस्रधाद्य |
वज्राहतं शृङ्गमिवाचलस्य || ५-२८-४
4. idam = this; me = my hR^idayam = heart; nuunam = is surely; sthiram = hard; yat = for which reason; adya = today; na vishiiryate = (it) is not broken; sahasrathaa = into thousand pieces; achalasya shR^iN^gamiva = as a mountain-top; vajraahatam = struck by lightning.
"Though devoid of happiness and frequently full of sorrow, my heart must be hard indeed, in that it does not break into a thousand pieces today like a mountain-top struck by lightning."
वैवास्ति दोषो मम नूनमत्र |
भावं न चास्याहमनुप्रदातु |
मलं द्विजो मन्त्रमिवाद्विजाय || ५-२८-५
5. naivaasti = there is no; doSaH = fault; mama = of mine; atra = in this matter; aham = I; asmi = have become; vadhyaa = assassinable; asya = to this Ravana; apriya darshanasya = of disagreeable perception; aham = I; na alam = am not able; anupradhaatum = to give; asya = him; bhaavam = (my) affection; mamtramiva = like a mystical verse; advijaaya = to one not belonging to the twice-born classes; dvijaH = by a member of the twice-born class.
"There is no fault of mine in this matter. I have become killable at the hands of this demon of disagreeable perception. I am not able to give him my affection any more than a member of the twice-born classes would offer a mystical verse to one not belonging to the twice-born classes."
नूनं ममाङ्गान्यचिरादनार्यः |
शस्त्रैः शितै श्छेत्स्यति राक्षसेन्द्रः |
तस्मिन्ननागच्छति लोकनाथे |
गर्भस्थजन्तोरिव शल्यकृन्तः || ५-२८-६
6. tasmin = (If) Rama; lokanaathe = the ruler of the world; anaagachchhati = does not come; anaaryaH = the evil; raakSasendraH = king of Demons; nuunam = surely; chhetsyati = will cut off; mama = my; aNgaani = limbs; shitaiH = with shapened; shastraiH = weapons; shalya kR^intaH iva = like a surgeon; garbhasthajantoH = a (lifeless) feotus situated in the womb.
"If Rama the Ruler of the world does not come here, the evil Ravana, the king of Demons will cut off my limbs with his sharpened weapons, even as a surgeon would cut the limbs of a lifeless feotus."
दुःखं बतेदं मम दुःखिताया |
मासौ चिरायाधिगमिष्यतो द्वौ |
बद्धस्य वध्यस्य तथा निशान्ते |
राजापराधादिव तस्करस्य || ५-२८-७
7. mama = to me; duHkhitaayaaH = lamenting; dvau = two; maasau = mouths; adhigamiSyataH = will go upto; chiraaya = a long time; nishaante iva = as at the end of a night; taskarasya = a thief; baddhhasya = imprisoned; vadhyasya = and to be capitally punished; raajaaparaadhaat = under the detention orders of a king; (passes away in the instant case); bata = Alas! Idam = this; duHkham = is painful.
"To me lamenting, two months will go up to a long time, as at the end of a night a thief imprisoned and to be capitally punished under the detention orders of a king. Alas! This is painful."
हा राम हा लक्ष्मण हा सुमित्रे |
हा राममातः सह मे जनन्या |
एषा विपद्याम्यहमल्पभाग्या |
महार्णवे नौरिव मूढवाता || ५-२८-८
8. haa raama = O; Rama; haa lakSmaNa = O; Lakshmana; haa sumitraa = O; Sumitra; haa raama maataH = O; Kausalya; me jananyaa saha = together with my mother; eSaa = this; aham = I; alpabhagyaa = of scanty fortune; vipadyaami = am going to be destroyed; nauriva = like a ship; muuDha vaataa = driven out of its course by a strong wind; mahaarNave = in a mighty ocean.
"O Rama, O Lakshmana, O Sumitra, O Kausalya! O mother! I, of a scanty fortune, am going to be destroyed, like a ship driven out of its course by a strong wind in a mighty ocean."
तरस्विनौ धारयता मृगस्य |
सत्त्वेन रूपं मनुजेन्द्रपुत्रौ |
नूनं विशस्तौ मम कारणात्तौ |
सिंहर्षभौ द्वाविव वैद्युतेन || ५-२८-९
9. sattvena = by a being; dhaarayataa = who had possessed; ruupam = the form; mR^igasya = of a deer; tau = those two; manujendra putrau = sons of Dasaratha; tarasvinau = the energetic one; nuunam = were surely; vishastau = killed; mama kaaraNaat = for my sake; dvau simharSabhau iva = as two excellent lions; (killed); vaidyutena = by a flashing thunder bolt.
"In the disguise of a deer, those two energetic sons of Dasaratha were surely killed for my sake, as two excellent lions killed by a flashing thunderbolt."
नूनं स कालो मृगरूपधारी |
मामल्पभाग्यां लुलुभे तदानीम् |
यत्रार्यपुत्रं विससर्ज मूढा |
रामानुजं लक्ष्मणपूर्वजं च || ५-२८-१०
10. nuunam = certainly; saH = that; kaalaH = Time-spirit; mR^igaruupadhaarii = assuming the guise of a deer; lulubhe = allured; maam = me; alpabhaagyaam = having a poor fortune; yatra = at which time; muuDhaa = I; a stupid woman; visasarja = sent forth; raamaanujam = Lakshmana; aaryaputramcha = and the noble prince; lakSmaNa puurvajam = Rama the elder brother of Lakshmana.
"Certainly that Time-spirit, assuming the guise of a deer, allured me, a woman of poor fortune at that time and to whom I, a stupid woman, sent forth (far away) Lakshmana and the noble prince Rama the elder brother of Lakshmana."
हा राम सत्यव्रत दीर्घबाहो |
हा पूर्णचन्द्रप्रतिमानवक्त्र |
हा जीवलोकस्य हितः प्रियश्च |
वध्यां न मां वेत्सि हि राक्षसानाम् || ५-२८-११
11. haa raama = O Rama; satyavrata = the strictly truthful man; diirgha baaho = the long-armed; haa puurNa chandra ratimaana vaktra = O the man whose face resembles the full-moon; haa = Alas!; hitaH = (you) who are well-disposed; jiivalokasya = of the world of living beings! Na vetsi hi = do not indeed know; maam = me; vadhyaam = to have been sentenced to dealth; raakSasaam = by the demons.
"O Rama, the strictly truthful man and the long-armed, O the man whose face resembles the full-moon! You, who are well-disposed of the world of living beings, do not indeed know me to have been sentenced to death by the demons."
अनन्यदैवत्वमियं क्षमा च |
भूमौ च शय्या नियमश्च धर्मे |
पतिव्रतात्वं विफलं ममेदम् |
कृतं कृतघ्नेष्विव मानुषाणाम् || ५-२८-१२
12. anayadaivatvam = (My) not having a deity (other than my husband); iyam = this; kSamaacha = patience; shayyaa = my reposing; bhuumau = on the floor; niyamashcha = my restriction; dharma = in righteousness; mama = my; pativrataatvam = devotion to the husband; idam = all this; viphalam = has become a waste; manuSyaaNaam kR^itamiva = like a good act done by men; kR^itaghneSu = to ungrateful men.
"My not having a deity (other than my husband), this patience, my reposing on the floor, my restriction in righteousness, my devotion to the husband - all this has become a waste, like a good act done by men to ungrateful men becoming waste".
मोघो हि धर्मश्चरितो मयायं |
तथैकपत्नीत्वमिदं निरर्थम् |
या त्वां न पश्यामि कृशा विवर्णा |
हीना त्वया संगमने निराशा || ५-२८-१३
13. yaa = I that person who; na pashyaami = is not seeing; tvaam = you; niraashaa = and who is not hopeful; sangamane = of coming into contact with you; kR^ishaa = who is emaciated; vivarNaa = and pale in complexion; ayam = this; dharmaH = righteous act; charitaH = performed; mayaa = by me; moghaH his = has indeed become a waste; tathaa = likewise; idam = this wife to you; nirartham = has become useless.
"For me who is not seeing you, who is bereft of you, who is not hopeful of coming into contact with you, who is emaciated and pale in complexion this righteous act performed by me has indeed become a waste. Likewise, this state of my being only one wife to you has become useless.."
पितुर्निदेशं नियमेन कृत्वा वनान्निवृत्तश्चरितव्रतश्च |
स्त्रीभिस्तु मन्ये विपुलेक्षणाभिस्त्वं रंस्यसे वीतभयः कृतार्थः || ५-२८-१४
14. kR^itvaa = having fulfilled; pituH = your father's nidesham = command; niyamena = as per the order of his words; charita vratashcha = and observed you vow; nivR^ittaH = you return; vanaat = from the forest; vita bhayaH = fearlessly; kR^itaarthaH = and having accomplished your purpose; manye = I think; ramsyase = you will enjoy carnally; vipulekSaNaabhiH = with large-eyed; striibhiH = women.
"Having fulfilled your father's command as per the order of his words and observed your vow, you return from the forest fearlessly and having accomplished your purpose, I think you will enjoy carnally with large-eyed women."
अहं तु राम त्वयि जातकामा चिरं विनाशाय निबद्धभावा |
मोघं चरित्वाथ तपो व्रतञ्च त्यक्ष्यामि धिग्जीवितमल्पभाग्याम् || ५-२८-१५
15. raama = O Rama!; charitvaa = having performed; tapaH = austerity; vratamcha = and vow; mogham = in vain; aham tu = I for myself; nibaddha bhaavaa = in whose was confined an affection for you; with jaalakaamaa = and who has fallen in love; tvayi = with you; chiram = for a long time; vinaashaaya = for (my own) destruction; tyakSyaami = I can lose; jaivitam = my life; dhik = woe to me; alpa bhaagyaam = of my little fortune!.
"O Rama! Having performed austerity and vow in vain, I for myself who has fallen in love with you and in whose was confined an affection for you for a long time, for my own destruction, I can lose my life. Woe to me of my little fortune!"
सा जीवितं क्षिप्रमहं त्यजेयं |
विषेण शस्त्रेण शितेन वापि |
विषस्य दाता न हि मेऽस्ति कश्चि |
च्छस्त्रस्य वा वेश्मनि राक्षसस्य || ५-२८-१६
16. saa aham = I as such; kSipram = will quickly; tyajeyam = abandon; jiivitam = my life; viSeNa = by poison; shitena shastreNa vaapi = or by a sharp weapon; me = to me; naasti kashchit = none is there; daataa = who is a giver; viSasya = either of a poison; shastrasyavaa = or of a sharp weapon; veshmani = in the house; raakSasasya = of Ravana (a demon).
"I as such will abandon quickly my life by poison or by a sharp weapon. To me, none is there, who is a giver either of a poison or of a sharp weapon in the house of Ravana."
इतीव देवी बहुधा विलप्य |
सर्वात्मना राममनुस्मरन्ती |
प्रवेपमाना परिशुष्कवक्त्रा |
नगोत्तमं पुष्पितमाससाद || ५-२८-१७
17. itiiva = thus; vilapya = lamenting; bahudhaa = in several ways; devii = Seetha; anusmarantii = was recollecting; raamam = Rama; sarvaatmanaa = in all spirits; pravepamaanaa = and trembling; parishuSkavaktraa = with a dried-up face; aasasaada = approached; nagottamam = that excellent trees; puSpitam = in bloom.
Thus lamenting in several ways, Seetha was recollecting Rama in all spirits and trembling with and emaciated face, approached that excellent tree in bloom.
सा शोकतप्ता बहुधा विचिन्त्य |
सीताथ वेण्युद्ग्रथनं गृहीत्वा |
उद्भुध्य वेण्युद्ग्रथनेन श्रीघ्र |
महं गमिष्यामि यमस्य मूलम् || ५-२८-१८
18. shiitaa = Seetha; shokabhitaptaa = who was tormented with grief; vichintya = thinking (thus); bahudhaa = in various ways; gR^ihiitvaa = holding; atha = and thereafter; veNyudgrathanam = her braid of hair looking like a hanging rope; (now thought within herself); aham = "I; gamiSyaami = shall go; yamsya muulam = to the presence of Yama the God of Death; udbadhya = by tying my neck; shiigram = quickly; veNyugrathanena = with my braid of hair looking
Seetha, who was tormented with grief, thus thinking in various ways and thereafter holding her braid of hair looking like a hanging rope (now thought within herself) "I shall go to the presence of Yama the God of Death by tying my neck quickly with my braid of hair looking like a hanging rope"
उपस्थिता सा मृदुसर्वगात्री |
शाखां गृहीत्वाथ नगस्य तस्य |
तस्यास्तु रामं प्रविचिन्तयन्त्या |
रामानुजं स्वं च कुलं शुभाङ्ग्याः || ५-२८-१९
शोकानिमित्तानि तथा बहूनि |
धैर्यार्जितानि प्रवराणि लोके |
प्रादुर्निमित्तानि तदा बभूवुः |
पुरापि सिद्धान्युपलक्षितानि || ५-२८-२०
19; 20. atha = thereafter; saa = that Seetha; mR^idu sarvaagatrii = with all her soft limbs; upashitaa = stood; yR^ihiitvaa = seizing; shaakhaam = a branch; tasya nagasya = of that tree; tasyaaH tu = to her; shubhaaNgyaaH = having handsome limbs; pravichintayantyaaH = who was thinking; raamam = of Rama; raamaanujam = Lakshmana; svam kulamcha = her own race; praadarbabhuuvuH = appeared; tadaa = then; bahuuni = many; nimittaani = omens; shokaanimittaani = not having adequate occasion for grief; dhairyaa rjitaani = which procured courage; loke = in the world; pravaraaNi = which were excellent; tathaa = and upalakSitaani = which were seen; puraapi = earlier also; siddhaani = as thoroughly efficacious.
Thereafter Seetha with all her soft limbs stood seizing a branch of that tree. To her having handsome limbs, who was thinking of Rama, Lakshmana and her own race, then appeared many omens, which were not having adequate occasion for grief, which procured courage in the world, which were excellent and which were seen earlier also as thoroughly efficacious.
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इत्यार्ष्ते श्रीमद्रामायणे आदिकाव्ये सुन्दरकाण्डे अष्टाविंशः सर्गः
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© August, 2005, K. M. K. Murthy