pat457 wrote:Just curious. Anyone here who has actually managed to wade through the Ramayana or the Mahabharata?
Arlaug wrote:Unfortunately not even if I'd very much like to. If I ever get across a copy, I'd love to have a reading
Arlaug wrote:Thanks but I sincerely doubt I will keep up with e-reading since my previous attempts failed. I wasn't able to read Silmarillion via ebook reader, let alone such bite.
But I am, however little, familiar with the narrative. Closest to IE themselves I read Gilgamesh in highschool as a part of regular bookreports. Also I am more interested in Edda than ex. Ramayana but it would be an interesting journey aswell.
Arlaug wrote:Oh my. If there were an option of giving karma poins, you'd have a 1000 at least for me. Such a swift and fulfilling answer. 1/14 of a treasure to you
75. “Seeing Sītā’s dreadful situation, I quietly mused by could not shake off my anxiety.
76. “Then I devised a means whereby I might converse with Jānaki: I began to extol the dynasty of the House of Ikṣvāku.
77. “When the queen heard me recite those words, sanctified by the names of those royal seers, she answered me, blinded by her tears.
78. “ ‘Who are you? How and why have you come here, bull among monkeys? What is the nature of your relationship with Rāma? Please tell me that.’
79. “When I had heard those words of hers, I said these words, ‘My Queen, your husband, Rāma, has as his ally Sugrīva, the mighty and valorous lord of the monkeys, whose valor is fearsome.
80. “ ‘Know that I am his servant Hanumān. I have come here dispatched by your husband, tireless Rāma.
81. “ ‘The majestic tiger among men, Dāśarathi himself, gave me this signet ring as a token of identification for you, illustrious lady.
82. “ ‘I wish to do what you command, my queen. What must I do? I can take you back to Rāma and Lakṣmaṇa. What is your reply?’
83. “When she had heard that and reflected upon it, Sītā, the delight of Janaka, said, ‘Let Rāghava destroy Rāvaṇa and then take me back himself.’
84. “Bowing my head to the noble and blameless queen, I asked her for some token that would delight Rāghava’s heart.
85. “Addressed in that fashion, the fair-hipped lady in great agitation gave me a splendid jewel and entrusted me with a message.
86. “Bowing to the princess, with a focused mind, I reverently circumambulated her with my thoughts intent on my return there.
87. “Reaching some decision in her mind, she replied further, ‘Hanumān, please relate my tale to Rāghava.
88. “ ‘You must do so in such a way that when Rama and Lakṣmaṇa hear it, those two heroes will come at once with Sugrīva.
89. “ ‘Otherwise, I have but two months more to live. Then Kakutstha will never see me again, and I will die with no one to protect me.’
90. “When I heard those piteous words, anger overcame me; and I perceived at once that there remained an additional task for me to do.
but I sincerely
doubt I will keep up with e-reading since my previous attempts failed. I
wasn't able to read Silmarillion via ebook reader, let alone such bite.
But I am, however little, familiar with the narrative. Closest to IE
themselves I read Gilgamesh in highschool as a part of regular
bookreports. Also I am more interested in Edda than ex. Ramayana but it
would be an interesting journey aswell.
pat457 wrote:Arlaug wrote:Unfortunately
not even if I'd very much like to. If I ever get across a copy, I'd
love to have a reading
There's an complete, public domain 19th-century translation of the
Mahabharata available: http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/maha/
Be warned that the Mb is veyry long - unabridged it's about
ten times the length of the Iliad and the Odyssey
combined. Another thing to keep in mind should you ever check it is that
Indian storytelling is anything but linear (if you've ever watched an
Indian movie, you'd probably know what I'm talking about): the main plot
takes quite some time to develop and proceed due to the numerous
asides, subplots and stories-within-the-story (many of which have no
direct connection with the main story anyway). The Gita is
arguably one of these divergences from the main narrative - Krishna
takes about 700 verses and eighteen chapter's worth of monologuing just
to convince Arjuna not to chicken out of the war. All this while their
chariot is parked in the middle of the battlefield between two opposing
camps waiting for the signal to kill each other - which Arjuna was
supposed to give before he got cold feet.
Here's a more readable summary of the main story:
http://www.wmblake.com/stories/mahabhar ... ction.html
siddharth wrote:I would like to point out that the Gita is considered to be an individual piece in itself which was later included within the Mahabharat.
And yes, the story is not linear because there is no single hero to vouch for. There are the Pandavas, Bhishma, Drona, Karna, Krishna.
As mythologies work (well, excepting the Greek works) they all are given histories of their own within the text. (kinda like LotR too. No? )
In course of time, the queen-consort died. At her death the king was for a long time crushed by sorrow, but urged by his courtiers he performed her obsequies, and set another in her place as queen-consort. She was dear to the king and beloved. In time she also conceived, and all due attention having been given her, she brought forth a son, and they named him Prince Bharata.
The king loved his son much, and said to the queen, "Lady, I offer you a boon: choose." She accepted the offer, but put it off for the time. When the lad was seven years old, she went to the king, and said to him, "My lord, you promised a boon for my son. Will you give it me now?" "Choose, lady," said he. "My lord," quoth she, "give my son the kingdom." The king snapt his fingers at her; "Out, vile jade!" said he angrily, "my other two sons shine like blazing fires; would you kill them, and ask the kingdom for a son of yours?" She fled in terror to her magnificent chamber, and on other days again and again asked the king for this. The king would not give her this gift. He thought within himself: "Women are ungrateful and treacherous. This woman might use a forged letter or a treacherous bribe to get my sons murdered." So he sent for his sons, and told them all about it, saying: "My sons, if you live here some mischief may befall you. Go to some neighbouring kingdom, or to the woodland, and when my body is burnt, then return and inherit the kingdom which belongs to your family." Then he summoned soothsayers, and asked them the limits of his own life. They told him he would live yet twelve years longer. Then he said, "Now, my sons, after twelve years you must return, and uplift the umbrella of royalty." They promised, and after taking leave of their father, went forth from the palace weeping. The Lady Sītā said, "I too will go with my brothers:" she bade her father farewell, and went forth weeping.
Said Prince Bharata, "I will fetch back my brother Rāmapaṇḍita from the forest, and raise the royal umbrella over him." Taking the five emblems of royalty, he proceeded with a complete host of the four arms to their dwelling-place. Not far away he caused camp to be pitched, and then with a few courtiers he visited the hermitage, at the time when Lakkhaṇa-paṇḍita and Sītā were away in the woods. At the door of the hermitage sat Rama-paṇḍita, undismayed and at ease, like a figure of fine gold firmly set. The prince approached him with a greeting, and standing on one side, told him of all that had happened in the kingdom, and falling at his feet along with the courtiers, burst into weeping. Rama-paṇḍita neither sorrowed nor wept; emotion in his mind was none. When Bharata had finished weeping, and sat down, towards evening the other two returned with wild fruits. Rama-paṇḍita thought—"These two are young: all-comprehending wisdom like mine is not theirs. If they are told on a sudden that our father is dead, the pain will be greater than they can bear, and who knows but their hearts may break. I will persuade them to go down into the water, and find a means of disclosing the truth." Then pointing out to them a place in front where there was water, he said, "You have been out too long: let this be your penance—go into that water, and stand there." Then he repeated a half-stanza:
"Let Lakkhaṇa and Sītā both into that pond descend."
One word sufficed, into the water they went, and stood there. Then he told them the news by repeating the other half-stanza:
"Bharata says, king Dasaratha's life is at an end."
When they heard the news of their father's death, they fainted. Again he repeated it, again they fainted, and when even a third time they fainted away, the courtiers raised them and brought them out of the water, and set them upon dry ground. When they had been comforted, they all sat weeping and wailing together. Then Prince Bharata thought: "My brother Prince Lakkhaṇa, and my sister the Lady Sītā, cannot restrain their grief to hear of our father's death; but Rama-paṇḍita neither wails nor weeps. I wonder what can the reason be that he grieves not? I will ask." Then he repeated the second stanza, asking the question:
"Say by what power thou grievest not, Rāma, when grief should be?
Though it is said thy sire is dead grief overwhelms not thee!"
Then Rāma-paṇḍita explained the reason of his feeling no grief by saying,
"When man can never keep a thing, though loudly he may cry,
Why should a wise intelligence torment itself thereby?
"The young in years, the older grown, the fool, and eke the wise,
For rich, for poor one end is sure: each man among them dies.
As sure as for the ripened fruit there comes the fear of fall,
So surely comes the fear of death to mortals one and all.
"Who in the morning light are seen by evening oft are gone,
And seen at evening time, is gone by morning many a one.
"If to a fool infatuate a blessing could accrue
When he torments himself with tears, the wise this same would do.
"By this tormenting of himself he waxes thin and pale;
This cannot bring the dead to life, and nothing tears avail.
"Even as a blazing house may be put out with water, so
The strong, the wise, the intelligent, who well the scriptures know,
Scatter their grief like cotton when the stormy winds do blow.
"One mortal dies—to kindred ties born is another straight:
Each creature's bliss dependent is on ties associate.
"The strong man therefore, skilled in sacred text,
Keen-contemplating this world and the next,
Knowing their nature, not by any grief,
However great, in mind and heart is vext.
"So to my kindred I will give, them will I keep and feed,
All that remain I will maintain: such is the wise man's deed."
In these stanzas he explained the Impermanence of things.
When the company heard this discourse of Rāma-paṇḍita, illustrating the doctrine of Impermanence, they lost all their grief.
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