Uttara Kanda 2: The Birth of Ravana

Uttara Kanda 2: The Birth of Ravana

Uttara Kanda 2: The Birth of Ravana

The three brothers summoned the architect Vishwakarma and asked him to build them a grand city just like Indra’s Amaravati. Vishwakarma then built them the fortified city of Lanka on the shores of the southern ocean. Lanka was built on the peak of the mountain Trikuta and was thirty yojanas in length.


The three rakshasas then stayed there, married, and had children. The rakshasas and their children continued to torment the Gods. The celestial beings then went to Shiva to seek his help. Shiva refused to slay Sukesha’s sons but asked them to go to Vishnu. The Gods then approached Vishnu, who promised to help them.


The three rakshasas then learnt of what had happened. They decided to go to war and kill the Gods who had gone to request Vishnu for help. A terrible war then commenced as the rakshasas battled the Gods. Vishnu arrived on the battlefield mounted on Garuda, holding the chakra, and other weapons.


The rakshasas surrounded Vishnu and began to attack him. Wielding the Sharnga bow, Vishnu shot a shower of arrows that massacred the rakshasas. Mali, then attacked Vishnu shooting arrows at him. Vishnu used his arrows to destroy Mali’s chariot, crown, bow, and horses. An angry Mali then grabbed his club and struck Garuda on its head.


Vishnu then released his chakra, and it beheaded Mali. Seeing their brother dead, Sumali and Malayavat fled to Lanka. Garuda charged at the fleeing rakshasas, and Vishnu’s arrows sent thousands of them to the world of death. Seeing Vishnu attack, Malayavat stopped and challenged Vishnu for a duel.


Vishnu’s spear struck Malayavat, and he charged at Garuda. The great bird used its huge wings to stroke Malayavat, making him fall far away. Malayavat then ran to Lanka. In great panic, all the rakshasas left from Lanka with their families and settled in the world of rasatala.


Sumali then decided to give his daughter Kaikasi to Vishrava. The maiden approached the sage and requested his favours. The sage told her that the sons born to her will be terrible and filled with cruelty. He then told her that her last son would take after him and follow dharma.


Kaikasi then gave birth to a rakshasa with ten heads known as Dashagriva. The next son born was huge and known as Kumbhakarna, A daughter with a malformed face was then born, who was named Surpanakha. The last son born was Vibhishana, who had dharma in his soul. One day, Vaishravana came to visit his father.


Kaikasi, who saw him asked Dashagriva to act such that he would become equal to Vaishravana. Dashagriva went to Gokarna with his brothers to perform austerities and please Brahma, They prayed for nine thousand years, and at the end of every thousand years Dashargriva cut off one of his heads to offer to Brahma.


Finally, when he was about to cut off his last head, Brahma appeared. Brahma was pleased and asked the brothers to choose the boon of their choice. Dashagriva asked for immortality saying he did not want to be killed by Gods, daityas, asuras, nagas, birds, or yakshas. Brahma granted him his boon and also restored all his ten heads.


Vibhishana asked the creator to bless him with the ability to follow dharma always. Brahma was happy and granted Vibhishana his boon. Brahma also granted immortality to Vibhishana. It was then Kumbhakarna’s turn to ask a boon. The Gods were scared because Kumbhakarna was extremely strong. If he became stronger, they would be in trouble.


They prayed to Brahma to help them, and he summoned Saraswati. Using her power, Saraswati manipulated Kumbhakarna’s speech. He then asked that he should be able to sleep for many years. Brahma granted him the boon and left, even as Kumbhakarna was surprised with what he had asked.


,,, to be continued