Hanuman is a Hindu god and an ardent devotee of Rama.
1. STORY BEFORE HANUMANJIS BIRTH
Hanuman was the son of Anjana, an apsara cursed to take the form of a monkey, who married Vanar (monkey) king Kesari. Birth story of Lord Hanuman is very fascinating, for that lets first read the story of Mother Anjana long before Lord Hanumans birth.
Brahmas courtLord Brahmajis palace was a heavenly abode and beautiful apsaras lived in that palace. Among them was a beautiful apsara named Anjana. Happy with her services Brahmaji decided to reward her. He asked Anjana her desire and she replied hesitatinglyLord please remove my curse which was placed on me by a Rishi Agnirasa(sage). Brahmaji asked her to tell him about her curse and assured her that he will try to help her. Anjana started narrating her story, When I was a child I used to get bored of my luxurious lifestyle and in search of amusement one day I came down to earth to play with earths strange creatures. As I was wandering around to look for some friends, I saw a monkey meditating in a forest.
Rishis curseLittle did I know about this monkey, I started laughing and making fun of that monkey because he was seated with folded legs just like a lotus. Seeing that monkey pose like a human sage, I threw some pebbles and fruits at him.
Since I was a small child the Sage tried to ignore my foolishness at first but eventually he lost his temper. Soon his eyes opened and I could see anger in his eyes. He was not an ordinary monkey. He was a powerful sage who had disguised himself as a monkey to do his tapasya. My mischief had disturbed his meditation and in his thundering voice he said, Young apsara, you have committed a sin and you should be punished for that. Since you mocked me of being a monkey, I curse you that whenever you fall in love with someone you will turn into a monkey.
ApsaraI begged and cried in front of him. But sage Agnirasa said that the curse could not be changed but said that besides my monkey face someone will fall in love with me. Anjana said to Lord Brahma, This is my curse story, O Lord! please save me from this curse.
After hearing her story Brahmaji felt sad for her and uttered, I think I can help you in removing this curse. As per the curse go and live your life on earth, get married and youll remain this way until you give birth to an incarnation of Lord Shiva.
Lion fightAnjana was happy to learn that and followed Brahmas advice. Soon she took birth on earth and lived in Kunjar family one who dwells in forest. One day while returning home from forest she saw a man fighting a mighty lion. She stood there and watched that brave man fought. She looked at that man with love and admiration and after killing the lion when that man turned he saw Anjana standing there. The moment he looked at her,because of the curse Anjana turned into a monkey as she was in love with that man!
On seeing this transformation, Anjana covered her face and started to cry. Seeing her crying the man rushed towards her and inquired what the matter was.
Talk to me, O beautiful lady, face me, said the man.
Oh brave man, how can I you. I am cursed and as per the curse if I fall in love I will change into a monkey and I have, so please leave me alone and go, said Anjana.
That man said smiling,Look at me lady, I am not human but as per a boon from Lord Shiva I can take any form I want. Peeking through her fingers Anjana saw a monkey faced man standing in front of her. She was surprised. The man said, I am Kapiraj Kesari of Mount Sumeru, the king of monkeys. On seeing you I fell in love with you, I ask your hand in marriage will you marry me?Anjana accepted his proposal and thought that the Sages words came true. This man is willing to marry me besides my appearance.Later both of them got married in the forest.
But Anjana still wanted to get out of monkey body, she was an ardent devotee of Lord Shiva and she started performing intense meditation to please Lord Shiva.After seeing her devotion Lord Shiva appeared and asked what she desired. Anjana requested Lord Shiva to be born as her son and free her from Sages curse. So pleased with her bhakti; Lord Shiva granted her, her wish.
Dasrath doing havanAt that same time King Dasharath was also performing the ritual of Putra kamana yagna (spiritual ritual in order to have children) in Ayodhya. As a result of that yagna, he received a sacred pudding (Kheer) to be shared by his three wives, leading to the births of Lord Ram, Lakshman, Bharat, and Shatrughna. While Dasarath was giving that prasad to his wife,a kite snatched a fragment of that pudding, flew over the forest and dropped it where Anjana was engaged in meditation. This all happened because of Lord Shivas boon. Lord Shiva commanded Vayu to deliver that prasad to Anjana. Vayu, the Hindu deity of the wind, delivered the falling prasad to the outstretched hands of Maa Anjana. Thinking it to be prasad from Lord Shiva, Anjana consumed it with delight. As a result,Hanuman was born to her and she was free from the curse of Sage Agnirasa. Kesari and Anjana were was very happy to see their monkey faced baby boy. He was named as Anjaneya or the son of Anjana. Hanuman was very intelligent and proficient in grammar and music. He was a ardent worshiper and devotee of Ram and believed in devotion and sacrifice. Exciting events from Hanumans life are presented here in simple and lucid language for children. As Hanuman was a child of both Shiva and Vayu, he had immense power and was very strong from other monkey children. As compared to other monkey kids Hanuman was very curious and very mischievous. We would like to share some of his childhood stories.
2. ANJANEYA CAME TO BE KNOWN AS HANUMAN
When he was a child, his mother, Anjana, had assured him that he would never be destroyed and whenever he feels hungry he can have fruits as red and ripe as the rising sun. There is a story behind it and a phrase from Hanuman Chalisa dohaBal samay rabi bhakhshi liyo meaning In his childhood Hanuman swallowed the sun; describes it well.
One day mother Anjana stepped out after putting Hanuman to sleep. Soon he woke up and started feeling very hungry,he started looking around for his mother and when he saw the bright red sun in the sky he remembered his mothers word and thinking that the glowing sun was a delicious red fruit he mistook it as an apple and leaped towards it. Hanumanji was a divine child and being born to Anjana and Kesari he inherited their magical powers and because of that he leaped towards the sky at the speed of wind and the severe heat of the SUN had no effect on him. He caught hold of the sun and kept it inside his mouth. It was a day of solar eclipse and Rahu was coming to posses Sun. Seeing Rahu, Hanumanji thought that this is some kind of a black fruit and he ran towards Rahu, and Rahu rushed to seek help from Lord Indra.
Rahu said,Lord, who is this other Rahu who has come to posses Surya? I ran away from there as that thing leaped toward me. Indra was surprised to hear this and on his consort Airavata (Indras white elephant) he left to solve the situation. He saw a monkey faced kid playing in the sky with sun in his mouth. On seeing Indras elephant Hanumanji thought, its a yummy white fruit and tried to attack him. Seeing this attempt of that valorous monkey, Indra got angry and used his thunderbolt (vajrayudha) which hit the childs chin and hurled him to the earth. As a result of this hit Hanumanjis mouth remained open.
Vayu, the Wind god, rushed towards his sun Hanuman. With affection he carried him in his arms and took him to Paatal lok. Seeing his condition his mother Anjana started crying. Due to anger Vayu, the wind stopped flowing and due to this life on earth came to a standstill in the absence of air. Living beings felt breathless and started to faint. All the three worlds were in a tough situation. Worried Brahmaji along with Indra and other devtas approached Vayu, the wind god. They requested Vayu to start blowing again but seeing his son condition Vayu refused.
Brahma blessed the monkey child with immortality, invulnerability, enduring devotion to God, and prowess (bravery). Agni blessed him, Saying, Fire will never burn you. Kaal was no less generous, May not death overcome you. Vayu blessed him with more speed than he himself had. Indra said, No weapon of any kind shall wound you or hit your body and since your chin(Hanu) was broken as a result of my hit so from today on you will be known as HANUMAN one with the broken jaw. All the gods,blessed him saying that, None will ever equal you in strength and speed. Surya gave him two siddhis of yoga namely laghima and garima. With laghima he could attain the smallest form and with garima he could attain the biggest form of life.It is from this event that Anjanas monkey son came to be known as Hanuman. After this Vayu, wind god started flowing like before and life in all three worlds were back to normal.
3. HOW HANUMAN LOST HIS POWERS
Hanumans childhood was full of mischief and pranks. He was full of great energy and used his great powers to play pranks on meditating rishis. Hanuman disturbed them by pulling on their hairs, disturbing them in their puja and taking away their puja things. At first the rishis tried to ignore him but later they were very tired of his powers and decided to punish him by placing a small curse on Hanuman.With their powerful vision the rishis knew that Hanuman is a Hanuman lost his powersdivine child and later in his life he would assist Lord Ram in his quest to bring back Mother Sita from Lanka.They cursed him that for a short while Hanumann will loose all his powers and would remember only if someone would remind him of it. The effect of curse was lifted when a wise monkey named Jambhvant reminded Hanuman of his powers and this is when Hanuman recollected all his great powers and took a big jump to Lanka to find Mother Sita.
4. HOW HANUMAN MEETS SUGRIV
As Hanuman grew up he completed his studies under the guidance of Sun god. On completion of his studies Surya god asked him to help and guide Sugriv (who belonged to Surya gods family) throughtout his lifetime.Hanuman promised his guru that he will always accompany Sugriv and protect him from all harms. After seeking blessings from his guru Hanuman returned home to his parents. Later in his life Hanumans father King Kesari asked Hanuman to go to Pampapur to attain political knowledge, this is where Hanuman met Sugriv, the younger brother of Bali. They became good friends and later Hanuman assisted Sugriv during his tough days when Bali,his older brother had banished Sugriv from his kingdom.
5. HOW HANUMAN MEETS SHREE RAM
Sugriv sought protection in Matang Rishis ashram in Rishiyamukh mountains. He started living in those mountains with Hanuman and other vanars (monkeys). Hanuman was a friend and trusted advisory of Monkey King Sugriv. Sugriv was living in exile because of his brother Bali. One day he saw two young bowmen wondering in the foothills of Rishyamuk mountains. Fearing that Bali may have sent them to kill him, King Sugriv asked Hanuman to get their identity and on his orders Hanuman disguised himself as a Brahmin to get the details of these two bowmen. On seeing these two brothers Hanuman bowed and asked, Lord who are you and what bring you here? Seeing you it looks as if you are the Trinity either Brahma, Vishnu or Mahesh?
Shri Ram replied,O brahmin, I am Ram and he is my brother Lakshman. We come from Ayodhya and are in search of my wife, Sita who has been abducted by the demons. After learning about them Hanumanji understood that Shri Ram is the form of Vishnu,he revealed his true form and bowed in front of them. Seeing Hanumans love towards him Shri Ram placed his hand on his head. Filled with outmost joy Hanumanji placed them on his shoulders and took them to Sugriv on the mountain top. Sugriv was elated to see Shri Ram and after hearing his story Lord Ram promised to help Sugriv and in return Sugriva promised to help Shri Ram find Mother Sita. READ MORE ABOUT SUGRIV AND BALI FIGHT IN SHREE RAM INCARNATION
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