The RÁMÁYAN of VÁLMÍKI - Part 2 - 25 books and stories free download online pdf in English

The RÁMÁYAN of VÁLMÍKI - Part 2 - 25

25
Canto XXV. 
Kausalyá's Blessing.
Her grief and woe she cast aside,

Her lips with water purified,

And thus her benison began

That mother of the noblest man:

“If thou wilt hear no words of mine,

Go forth, thou pride of Raghu's line.

Go, darling, and return with speed,

Walking where noble spirits lead.

May virtue on thy steps attend,

And be her faithful lover's friend.

May Those to whom thy vows are paid

In temple and in holy shade,

With all the mighty saints combine

To keep that precious life of thine.

The arms wise Viśvámitra292 gave

Thy virtuous soul from danger save.

Long be thy life: thy sure defence

Shall be thy truthful innocence,

And that obedience, naught can tire,

To me thy mother and thy sire.

May fanes where holy fires are fed,

Altars with grass and fuel spread,

Each sacrificial ground, each tree,

Rock, lake, and mountain, prosper thee.

Let old Viráj,293 and Him who made

The universe, combine to aid;

Let Indra and each guardian Lord

Who keeps the worlds, their help afford,

And be thy constant friend the Sun,

Lord Púshá, Bhaga, Aryuman.294

Fortnights and seasons, nights and days,

Years, months, and hours, protect thy ways,

Vrihaspati shall still be nigh,

The War-God, and the Moon on high,

And Nárad295 and the sainted seven296

Shall watch thee from their starry heaven.

The mountains, and the seas which ring

The world, and Varuṇa the King,

Sky, ether, and the wind, whate'er

Moves not or moves, for thee shall care.

Each lunar mansion be benign,

With happier light the planets shine;

All gods, each light in heaven that glows,

Protect my child where'er he goes.

The twilight hours, the day and night,

Keep in the wood thy steps aright.

Watch, minute, instant, as they flee,

Shall all bring happiness to thee.

Celestials and the Titan brood

Protect thee in thy solitude,

And haunt the mighty wood to bless

The wanderer in his hermit dress.

Fear not, by mightier guardians screened,

The giant or night-roving fiend;

Nor let the cruel race who tear

Man's flesh for food thy bosom scare.

Far be the ape, the scorpion's sting,

Fly, gnat, and worm, and creeping thing.

Thee shall the hungry lion spare,

The tiger, elephant, and bear:

Safe, from their furious might repose,

Safe from the horned buffaloes.

Each savage thing the forests breed,

That love on human flesh to feed,

Shall for my child its rage abate,

When thus its wrath I deprecate.

Blest be thy ways: may sweet success

The valour of my darling bless.

To all that Fortune can bestow,

Go forth, my child, my Ráma, go.

Go forth, O happy in the love

Of all the Gods below, above;

And in those guardian powers confide

Thy paths who keep, thy steps who guide.

May Śukra,297 Yáma, Sun, and Moon,

And He who gives each golden boon,298

Won by mine earnest prayers, be good

To thee, my son, in Daṇḍak wood.

Fire, wind, and smoke, each text and spell

From mouths of holy seers that fell,

Guard Ráma when his limbs he dips,

Or with the stream makes pure his lips!

May the great saints and He, the Lord

Who made the worlds, by worlds adored,

And every God in heaven beside

My banished Ráma keep and guide.”

Thus with due praise the long-eyed dame,

Ennobled by her spotless fame,

With wreaths of flowers and precious scent

Worshipped the Gods, most reverent.

A high-souled Bráhman lit the fire,

And offered, at the queen's desire,

The holy oil ordained to burn

For Ráma's weal and safe return.

Kauśalyá best of dames, with care

Set oil, wreaths, fuel, mustard, there.

Then when the rites of fire had ceased,

For Ráma's bliss and health, the priest,

Standing without gave what remained

In general offering, as ordained.

Dealing among the twice-horn train

Honey, and curds, and oil, and grain,

He bade each heart and voice unite

To bless the youthful anchorite.

Then Ráma's mother, glorious dame

Bestowed, to meet the Bráhman's claim,

A lordly fee for duty done:

And thus again addressed her son:

“Such blessings as the Gods o'erjoyed

Poured forth, when Vritra was destroyed,

On Indra of the thousand eyes,

Attend, my child, thine enterprise!

Yea, such as Vinatá once gave

To King Suparṇa301 swift and brave,

Who sought the drink that cheers the skies,

Attend, my child, thine enterprise!

Yea, such as, when the Amrit rose,302

And Indra slew his Daitya foes,

The royal Aditi bestowed

On Him whose hand with slaughter glowed

Of that dire brood of monstrous size,

Attend, my child, thine enterprise!

E'en such as peerless Vishṇu graced,

When with his triple step he paced,

Outbursting from the dwarf's disguise,303

Attend, my child, thine enterprise!

Floods, isles, and seasons as they fly,

Worlds, Vedas, quarters of the sky,

Combine, O mighty-armed, to bless

Thee destined heir of happiness!”

The long-eyed lady ceased: she shed

Pure scent and grain upon his head.

And that prized herb whose sovereign power

Preserves from dark misfortune's hour,

Upon the hero's arm she set,

To be his faithful amulet.

While holy texts she murmured low,

And spoke glad words though crushed by woe,

Concealing with obedient tongue

The pangs with which her heart was wrung.

She bent, she kissed his brow, she pressed

Her darling to her troubled breast:

“Firm in thy purpose, go,” she cried,

“Go Ráma, and may bliss betide.

Attain returning safe and well,

Triumphant in Ayodhyá, dwell.

Then shall my happy eyes behold

The empire by thy will controlled.

Then grief and care shall leave no trace,

Joy shall light up thy mother's face,

And I shall see my darling reign,

In moonlike glory come again.

These eyes shall fondly gaze on thee

So faithful to thy sire's decree,

When thou the forest wild shalt quit

On thine ancestral throne to sit.

Yea, thou shalt turn from exile back,

Nor choicest blessings ever lack,

Then fill with rapture ever new

My bosom and thy consort's too.

To Śiva and the heavenly host

My worship has been paid,

To mighty saint, to godlike ghost,

To every wandering shade.

Forth to the forest thou wilt hie,

Therein to dwell so long:

Let all the quarters of the sky

Protect my child from wrong.”

Her blessings thus the queen bestowed;

Then round him fondly paced,

And often, while her eyes o'erflowed,

Her dearest son embraced.

Kauśalyá's honoured feet he pressed,

As round her steps she bent,

And radiant with her prayers that blessed,

To Sítá's home he went.