|Values for Life :
How so ever powerful one becomes he should must listen to the advice of his elders. By not listening to the advice even of Malyavan, Ravan dug his own grave.
After Suka’s exit, Malyavan, Ravan’s mother’s father (nana ) called on Ravan. Ravan welcomed Malyavan and offered hospitality. The old man was highly satisfied and said:“Ravan, many ill-omens are visible after Sita has set foot on Lanka. Infant mortality, famine, raining of blood and all kinds of impious delivery happens daily. Contemplate and do compatible puja performances to get relieved of the accumulated sins. It is best you return her to Ram. Ram is none other than Lord Vishnu. Worship him and liberate yourself from all the sins committed so far. I have told you what I had felt fit. People talk about your high-handedness and I thought therefore to alert you.”
“Have you been sent by Ram here? Since you are very old now and being my mother’s father I want to restrain from killing you. Get lost. If I need your services, I shall send for you.”Thus insulted by his grandson, Malyavan returned in shame.
On Ravan’s orders all Rakshasas assembled at the capital to lead the war. As Sri Ram met Ravan for the first time, he became enraged and took his bow and arrow from Lakshaman. Observing the ten crowned heads, twenty hands, valiant traits and the regale umbrellas, Sri Ram showered his arrows at his enemy. All the umbrellas and ten crowns were cut down by Sri Ram in no time. Ravan, in shame, helplessness and fear got down from his chariot and slowly withdrew.
Seeing the predicament of Ravan, Prahastha and other generals came rushing and saluted him. Asking him for further orders they said,”“O king, give us directions. We won’t sit shut in the court rooms. We would resist and counter attack the enemies. Give us your orders.”
Saying thus they fastened their chariots drawn by horses and elephants. Drums, trumpets, timpani and other war provoking instruments were played. Hurling maces, spikes, swords, bows and arrows and other weaponry they spread everywhere. Prahastha and his brigade reached the east fort. Vajradamshtra proceeded towards the south fort. Meghanada and his team reached the west fort. With ministers and generals Ravan reached the north fort.
Hearing these soothing words of Sarama, Sita recovered her mettle.
When Ravan thus retreated, Sri Ram sent Angada as ambassador to Ravan.
“Either you surrender Sita or continue fight. The city of Lanka and your entire race will be done away with soon. Don’t you listen to the war cry and the twang of the bows? Have you lost your sense of shame?”
Hearing these abuses of Angada, Ravan asked his followers to kill him. They approached and caught hold of Angada. The hero lifted them all in both his hands, hurled and smashed them. Then he destroyed the castle and flew back to Sri Ram.
Some of the stalwarts among the monkeys like Nala, Sushena etc. filled the deep trench adjacent to the wall around the capital. The Rakshas with their weapons like bows and arrows, swords, shields, maces, spikes, iron rods, discs and clubs attacked the Vanar force while the latter with rocks, stones and trees counter attacked them. Tumultuous noises from the elephants, horses, chariots, the twang from the bows, the roars of the monkeys and the yelling of the Rakshasas all combined; rend the air.
KK Shanmukhan ( To be concluded )