AUM SAI RAM
The birthday of Sri Hanuman falls on Chaitra Shukla Purnima, in the month of March-April, when the Moon is full.
Sri Hanuman is also known as Pawansuta, Mahaveer and Bajrangabali. He is worshipped, not only all over India but also in foreign lands where Hindus have migrated or elected domicile. Every temple of Sri Rama has a murti or idol of Sri Hanuman. In the front courtyard of every home, there is a small temple where the red flag of Sri Hanuman proudly dances and floats in the open sky and where everyday a diyya is lit in prayer and in reverence to Mahaveer, the embodiment of the ideal devotee.
People are never bored at listening to stories of Sri Hanuman at Satsang and now we also have the cartoon `Hanuman' on DVD which is the delight of every child in the world.
Sri Hanuman possessed many virtuous qualities; his deep devotion to His Lord Sri Rama was unparalleled.
Great rejoicings and festivities followed the return of Sri Rama to Ayodhya and his crowning as the King. After a few days, life went back to normal and all the monkeys who had served as warriors in his army returned to their home in the forest. Only one stayed behind; he was sad to leave the Master of his heart. He stood quietly in a corner and looked at Sri Rama with eyes filled with Love. Sri Rama noticed his fervent devotee and asked:
"O mighty hero how am I to compensate you for all you have done for me and my family?"
Many would have wanted wealth, name or fame, approbation or recognition or VIP line in return for their services. But Sri Hanuman was above all these:
"I desire nothing, Prabhu!"
Then the Queen, Sita Mother, removed a valuable necklace of pearls from her neck and offered it to the humble Sri Hanuman. Sri Hanuman took the necklace from Sita Mother. However, strange as it may sound, Sri Hanuman went back to a corner and there he started to bite at each of the pearls with his teeth cutting them into pieces. Everybody was astounded at his curious behaviour. Some wondered why the noble and great warrior Sri Hanuman was behaving like a monkey. Was it the monkey mind?
No! Non! Nyet! Premaswarupa! Hanuman was breaking the pearls to see if the name of his sweet Lord Rama was written in them. He replied to Sita Mother, who chided him:
"Mata, I cannot accept any thing which does not bear the name of Sri Rama!"
A sage then laughed and ironically remarked:
"Surely your body bears the name of Sri Rama!"
"Prabhu!" Sri Hanuman cried out at the unexpected remark, looking at Sri Rama; Sri Rama raised his right hand and blessed him; Sri Hanuman then tore his chest open with his mighty hands and Lo! Sri Rama and Sita Mother were seated in his heart!"
Dil me Raam, Hanth me Kaam- the Lord in our heart, let us serve!
Jaya Bajarangabali! Jaya Sri Rama! Jaya Sri Sai Rama !
At the Lotus Feet of Sai
Anita Bacha - Posted on 28.03.2007
Hanuman's Supreme Devotion
What happened to Sumitra's share of pudding that was carried away by the eagle? It was left on a mountain, which Anjani Devi consumed. As a result, Hanuman was born to her. This is the reason for the intimate relationship that existed between Hanuman and the four brothers, Rama, Lakshmana, Bharata and Satrughna. Very few are aware of it.
When Sita and Rama returned to Ayodhya, people's joy knew no bounds. At the time of His coronation, Rama distributed gifts to all those who had helped Him in the war, except to Hanuman. On being questioned by Sita, Rama said that Hanuman did not care for any gift and that He had no worthy gift to be given to Hanuman. Then Sita took out her pearl necklace and presented it to Hanuman. He plucked each pearl, put it between his teeth, placed it near his ear and with a face indicating disappointment threw it away in disgust. Surprised at this behavior of Hanuman, Sita said, "Hanuman, this is a precious pearl necklace given to me by my father, but you are throwing away the pearls without realizing their value. You don't seem to have given up your monkey tricks." Then Hanuman replied, "O mother, I examined each pearl in order to see whether it had the sacred name of Rama in it. I could not find it in any pearl. Without the name of Rama, they are but stones and pebbles. So, I cast them on the ground. Even the hair of mine is filled with the name of Rama." Saying so, he plucked out a hair from his hand and put it near Sita's ear. She could hear Rama's name emanating from it.
Then she started praising Hanuman thus: "You are the crest jewel among the monkeys who fulfilled Rama's mission. You are the great hero who found the whereabouts of Sita and destroyed the city of Lanka." (Telugu Poem)
It can be said that but for Hanuman,
Ramayana would not have existed. He is the embodiment of devotion and
surrender. Hanuman is present wherever Rama's name is chanted. Rama's name and
form are not different. Hanuman experienced this unity. That is the principle
of non-dualism. You call yourselves devotees of Rama and go through the sacred
text of Ramayana repeatedly, but is there any transformation in your mind? Not
at all. This is not true or real devotion, but only a show of devotion. Rama
does not approve of pomp and show. He gives importance only to practice. Bliss
can be attained only through practice. Try to understand the principle
of Rama correctly.
From Baba's discourse (2000)
RAMA AND HANUMAN
For all the mighty deeds done by Hanuman and great help rendered by him, Rama asked him: "Hanuman! What reward can I give you? Apart from expressing my gratitude to you I cannot give you any fitting recompense. The only way I can show my gratitude to you is that whenever you think of me at any time in your life, I shall appear before you." Rama was showing his gratitude to Hanuman in this manner.
This indicates that the primary duty of man is to be grateful all his life to the person who has done him a good turn.
Man has to realize his divinity and look at all Nature from the Divine point of view. Instead man looks at everything only from the mundane point of view. The body is indeed perishable. But it is also the means for realizing the imperishable Truth.
This means, all speech should be about the Divine. All actions should be godly. Every thought should be about God.
That is the appeal which Thyagaraja made to his mind: "Oh mind, think always about Sri Rama." (Bhagavan sang in His own mellifluous voice Thyagaraja's song in which he said: "Oh Kausalya, what penance did you perform to enjoy the privilege of calling Sri Rama affectionately as a mother and showering your kisses on the divinely beautiful child Rama. What penance did Dasaratha perform to call Sri Rama to come to him?") Thus Thyagaraja was chanting Rama's name all the time and singing his glories. This is an example to the world.
( 1995 Discourse)
The above two articles were posted on 23-04-2005 by Neena Chand
Once, Lord Rama asked Hanuman, "How do you contemplate on Me?"
"At the physical level, You are my Master and I am Your servant. At the mental level, I am a spark of thy Divine Self. At the Atmic level, You and I are one", said Hanuman.
Pleased with Hanuman's reply, Lord Rama presented him with a pearl necklace, which was given to Mother Sita by her father, King Janaka, at the time of her marriage. Hanuman held this very valuable necklace in his hand, began to remove all the pearls one by one from the necklace, and kept it near his ear for some time, and then, after biting each one of them, threw them away. Sita was surprised to see Hanuman behaving thus. She thought that Hanuman had not given up his monkey traits. Rama knew the intention behind this act of Hanuman. However, in order to make Sita understand this, He asked, "Hanuman, why are you biting and throwing away such precious pearls?"
Hanuman replied, "O Lord, I am examining whether I could listen to Your name in the pearls. Since I could not hear it, I am throwing away. The pearl is no better than a stone if there is no Rama Nama in it. I want only You." Listening to this statement of Hanuman, Rama offered Himself by embracing Hanuman.
The inner meaning of this is Rama is where Hanuman is, and vice-versa. Hanuman is one who realised the unity of the individual and God. Consequently, Hanuman was always in a state of bliss. Hanuman is given various appellations, such as Santhudu, Gunavanthudu, Balavantadu (one of peace, virtues, and strength). He derived his strength from the divine name of Lord Rama. Many people confine the Divine Name only to the lips, but Hanuman chanted the name of Rama from the depth of his heart.
Poison will remain poison even if it is put in a precious vessel studded with diamonds, pearls, and emeralds. The divine ambrosia will not lose its taste even if it is put in a brass vessel. Likewise, it is the purity of heart, not the external appearance that matters. Purity of heart is the purpose behind chanting God's name. Chanting God's name should originate from the heart, not from the lips.
Hanuman is the brightest example of such a realised soul. When he first presented himself before Rama and offered his services, Rama turned to Lakshmana and said, "Brother! Listen! Notice how Hanuman has mastered the Vedas. His speech is saturated with the humility and dedication which the Rig' Veda embodies, the retentiveness and reverence that the Yajur Veda promotes and the intuitive vision that the Sama Veda grants. Hanuman knows all the scriptural texts. He is a genuine devotee. Sugriva is fortunate to have him as his minister, Hanuman, whose thoughts words and deeds are offered to God." When these three are in perfect harmony, the person wins the Grace of God, as Hanuman succeeded in securing. Sugriva fumbled in this Sadhana. He failed to keep his word. He had not commandeered his forces, though the rainy season had ended. So, Lakshmana vented his anger at his ingratitude and inequity. "You can never cleanse yourselves of the sin of ungratefulness and breach of promise. Your conduct is so reprehensible that even vultures will desist from feeding on your corpse."
When the terrified culprit fell at the feet of Rama, seeking pardon, Rama said, "Lakshmana! Safe and happy on his throne, Sugriva is blinded by pride, power and ignorance. Misery alone can open the eyes of people to the values they have neglected. He has been holding on to the trivial and the temporary which intoxicate man with fleeting joys. How can such a person follow the path of Dharma?" Hanuman, who heard this compassionate reaction, returned with Sugriva and advised him to repent and reaffirm, his rectitude and thankfulness. One has to recognise one's faults and remedy their consequences by sincere self-examination and repentance.
It is often said that Rama followed Dharma at all times. This is not the correct way of describing him. He did not follow Dharma; he was Dharma. What he thought, spoke and did was Dharma, is Dharma for ever.
Discourse on Sri Rama Navami day at Prasanthi Nilayam on 18-4-1986.
Hanuman, after the completion of his mission in Lanka, went to Sita to receive her blessings before returning to Rama. At that time, Mother Sita blessed Hanuman in this manner:
"Hanuman! You are full of prowess, intelligence and fortitude. May you never grow old." This did not give joy to Hanuman. Noticing his sense of disappointment, Sita blessed him again:
"Live as an immortal." Even this did not please Hanuman. Sita then blessed him again:
"Hanuman! You are full of virtues! May the dwellers in the three worlds extol your qualities."
Hanuman felt embarrassed and bent his head as if he was ashamed to hear her praise him. Observing Hanuman's reactions, Sita finally blessed him thus: "May Sri Rama always love you!"
The moment he heard these words, Hanuman was in rapture. "This was all that I wanted," he declared. "I must be worthy of Rama's love. A life without Rama's love is an utter waste. It is a living death. The only thing I desire is Rama's love."
Hanuman was proficient in music. There was none that could excel him in singing. Even Narada and Tumbura could not prevail against him. Such a great singer continued always to chant the name of Rama.
Poornachandra Auditorium, 3 Mar 1992
Mere repetition of God's name is not enough. One should participate in His work. Once Vibhishana asked Hanuman, "I love Lord Rama wholeheartedly and chant His name 24 hours a day. Why hasn't He showered His grace on me so far?"
Hanuman replied, "Oh simpleton, no doubt you are chanting Rama's name, but are you taking part in His work? It is almost ten months since Sita was brought to Lanka. Have you made any effort for her release?"
Listening to Hanuman's advice, Vibhishana went to Rama and offered himself at His service. Along with repetition of God's name, one should participate in service activities also
(Mahadeva) Thou art the mighty ape Hanuman that aided Vishnu in the
incarnation of Rama in his expedition against Ravana.
Valmiki Ramayana, Sundar Kanda, Canto 3 Literal translation, verse by verse (Gita Press, Gorakhpur).
Addressing Ram and Lakshmana Hanuman said:
Sent by that high-minded Sugriva, king of the leaders
of monkeys, I, a monkey, Hanuman by name, have sought you. The said pious
minded Sugriva actually seeks your friendship. Know me to be his minister,
a monkey sprung from the loins of the wind-god and arrived here from
Rsyamuk (mountain) in order to oblige Sugriva and disguised in the form of
a recluse (Brahmin), capable as I am of going wherever I please and acting
as I please.
Sri Hanumanji is an incarnation of Lord Siva.
Brihaspati (the preceptor of the gods) had an attendant by the name of Punjikasthala who was cursed to assume the body of a female monkey. The curse was to be removed on her giving birth to an incarnation of Lord Siva. Accordingly, she was born as Anjana and, together with her husband Kesari (so named on account of his being as brave as a lion), lived a life of chastity and purity. She performed intense Tapasya (austerities) for a great many years, during which period she worshipped Lord Siva who being pleased with her granted her a boon. She asked that He (Lord Siva) be born to her so that she may be freed from the curse.
the king of Ayodhya was given the sacred payasa (pudding) by Agnideva to
share among his wives so that they may have divine children (Ram,
Lakshmana, Bharata and Shatrughna), by divine ordinance, a bird (kite)
snatched a fragment of that pudding and, whilst flying over the forest,
dropped it where Anjana was engaged in worship. Pavandev (the deity
presiding over the wind) delivered that fragment of pudding to the
outstretched hands of Anjana who immediately swallowed it. With that
grace, she, in due course, gave birth to Hanumanji. Thus we find that Lord
Siva incarnated as Hanumanji in the bodily form of a monkey through the
grace and blessings of his god-father Pavandev, with Anjana and Kesari as
his earthly parents.
As soon as Hanumanji was born, Anjana was released from the curse and wished to return to Heaven. Hanumanji asked his mother what his future would be and how he was to earn his living. She assured him that he would never be destroyed, and said that fruits as ripe as the rising sun would form his food. Thinking that the glowing and glittering sun was food to be eaten by him, the baby Hanumanji being divine in nature, made just one leap for it. He was 1600 miles from the sun when Rahu, who was exclusively enabled to harass the sun (thus causing eclipses or obstacles to the sun) complained to Indra (king of the gods in heaven) of this new threat to his power. Indra struck Hanumanji with his thunderbolt, wounding his chin and causing him to fall down to earth.
Pavandev carried Hanumanji to Patala (the nether regions) and as he
departed from the earth, all life was endangered. Brahma and all the other
gods went to Patala and begged Pavandev to return. In order to appease him
they conferred great boons on the baby Hanumanji. The blessings of all the
gods made Hanumanji invincible and more powerful than any other being,
divine or ordinary. Thus Hanumanji is an embodiment of the powers of all
the gods and goddesses.
Hanumanji mentally chose Surya (the Sun-god) as his preceptor. Therefore he approached Surya with the request to be taught the scriptures so that he may manifest spiritually in daily life. Surya agreed to have Hanumanji as his disciple but pointed out that it was not possible for him to stop his journey across the sky as that would cause chaos in the world. But Hanumanji was so mighty that he surprised all the gods by facing his Guru, who had to be constantly moving, thus (Hanumanji) traversing the sky backwards and at the same time concentrating fully on his lessons.
In this way
Hanumanji enabled Surya to perform his duty and to impart knowledge at the
same time. Within a short period of 60 hours, Hanumanji mastered all the
scriptures. Surya considered the manner in which Hanumanji accomplished
his studies as sufficient dakshina (tuition fees), but Hanumanji pressed
him to accept more. Surya then asked Hanumanji to assist his son Sugriva,
who was living in Kishkindha, by being his minister and constant
Sri Hanumanji met Sri Rama whilst Sri Rama was in banishment. Sri Rama, together with his brother Lakshamana, was searching for his wife Sita. (Sita was abducted by the demon Ravana). Their search had taken them to the vicinity of the Pampa Lake situated at the base of the mountain Risyamukha. Sugriva (together with his ministers) was hiding in this region. Sugriva was being persecuted by his brother Bali. Sugriva was suspicious that Rama and Lakshmana might have been sent by Bali to kill him. Therefore, to ascertain whether they were friends or foes, Hanumanji approached them in the guise of a Brahmin. His first words to them were such that Sri Rama immediately said to Lakshmana: "None can speak thus without mastering the Vedas and their branches. Nor is there any defect in his countenance, eyes, forehead, brows, or any of his limbs. His accents are wonderful, auspicious and captivating. Even an enemy who has his sword uplifted is moved. Indeed, success awaits the monarch whose emissaries are so accomplished."
When Lord Rama revealed his identity, Hanumanji fell prostrate before Him and Lord Rama picked him up and clasped him to His bosom. Sri Rama reveals His identity as the son of Dasaratha and prince of Ayodhya, but Hanumanji perceives Him to be the Lord of the universe and prostrates.
Thereafter the story of Hanumanji is inextricably interwoven with that of Lord Rama, and is exhaustively dealt with in the Ramayana of Valmiki and the Ramacharitamanasa of Goswami Tulasidas.
To summarise in
a few words: Hanumanji introduces Lord Rama to Sugriva; goes off in search
of Sita; discovers and consoles Sita in Lanka; Burns the city of Lanka and
kills many demons; brings together Vibhishana and Lord Rama; returns to
Lanka with Lord Rama, and features very prominently in the battle that
ensues between Lord Rama and Ravana; saves the life of Lakshmana by
bringing the Sanjivani (life giving herb) from the Himalayas; and served
Lord Rama for as long as He lived a human life on earth.
Hanumanji met Bhima in the forest and recognised him as his spiritual brother. (They were both born with the blessings of Pavandev). Hanumanji promised to aid the Pandavas in the battle of Kurukshetra. There Hanumanji positions himself on the flag of Arjuna’s chariot, thus stabilising and protecting it. Hanumanji’s flag signifies sense control and mind control that gives victory to the higher nature over the lower nature. Wherever the servant of Lord Rama is, there, victory is secured.
Hanumanji is said to be Chiranjivi (immortal) and is present in the world even today. He is the link between the devotees and God, for, as instructed by the Lord, he serves, protects and inspires the servants of God. Saints like Tulasidas had the darshan (divine vision) of the Lord through the grace of Hanumanji.
In the epics of no other country is there a character so powerful, learned and philosophic as Hanumanji.
May we always
proclaim, "Bajrangbally Ki Jai", victory to Hanumanji who has the strength
of the thunderbolt.
Generally, all the gods and goddesses are pleased when their praises are sung. As far as Sri Hanuman is concerned, he is more delighted to hear the sacred name of Sri Rama sung than his own name being invoked. Even the most valuable article is rejected by him if it has not the sacred stamp of Ram on it.
There is unlimited power enclosed within us. When all that energy is directed towards the worship of God, it is called Bhakti or Devotion. This is exemplified by Sri Hanuman. If that energy is utilised for our selfish interests, it can result in downfall and destruction, as exemplified by Ravana. If we treat our potentialities with indifference they fritter away in all directions and are completely wasted.This is represented by common people all over the world who are not making any effort to advance along the spiritual path.
Hanuman`s devotion is centred in Sri Ram and his devotion forms the very basis of all his other qualities. One of the nine types of devotion is that of Master and servant- known as DASYABHAVA attitude and Sri Hanuman has adopted this from of devotion to become the most perfect example of it. Hanuman is always seen seated near the lotus feet of Sri Ram.
Hanuman`s devotion to Sri Ram had developed in him a total lack of ill wiil or hostility towards any one. In spite if possessing super human strength we do not find him making misuse of his powers anywhere. When Ravan asks, "Why did you kill the demons?" Hanuman gives a simple reply, "I killed those who attacked me".
In the Geeta, Lord Krishna describes the qualities of a bhakta or a devotee:
"He who acts for Me, who is engrossed in Me, who is My devotee, who is free from attachment, he reaches Me!"
The very first quality is "He who acts for Me". The very birth of Hanuman is to accomplish Sri Ram`s tasks as says Jambvan: "You are born to work for Sri Ram."
He has such a devotion to his task that he forgets all physical fatigue. When on being pleased with Hanuman`s achievements, Sri Ram embraces him; in return Hanuman begs only that he may remain Sri Ram`s steadfast devotee.
"O Lord, bless me with undying devotion for you, for you are a source of great bliss for me. May I have everlasting love for You!"
This alone was the desire of Hanuman.
greatness lies in his complete surrender to the Lord and he merges his own
existence in the Lord.. From whatever point of view we see, we find that
Sri Hanuman`s bhakti or devotion was so perfect that it culminated in
advaitic God realisation.
Sri Rama asked Hanuman: "Hanuman, what attitude do you cherish towards Me?"
Hanuman answered : "O Rama! When I think I am the
body, You are the Master and I am Your servant, when I think I am the
jivatman (embodied individual soul), You are the whole and I am a part ;
but when I have the Knowledge of Reality, I see that you are I and I am
Nothing exists but God.' "