“Though all of these unsuspecting wives of Ravana were seen by me, my mind has not been disturbed even a little.” (Hanuman, Valmiki Ramayana, Sundara Kand, 11.40)
कामं दृष्टा मया सर्वा विश्वस्ता रावणस्त्रियः।।
न हि मे मनसः किञ्चिद्वैकृत्यमुपजायते।
kāmaṃ dṛṣṭā mayā sarvā viśvastā rāvaṇastriyaḥ।।
na hi me manasaḥ kiñcidvaikṛtyamupajāyate।
1. I’m not in the mood
“Listen, I get it that your wife is missing. Tragic, really. I feel for you. The forest is a dangerous place. I don’t know what you were doing there to begin with. And bringing your wife along? Even with your younger brother there, it wasn’t safe enough.
“I would love to help, but I’m not really in the mood right now. I have been sitting here for a while and I have sort of gotten used to it. I require some kind of inspiration in order to get up and move. I hope you understand.”
2. I am not capable
“Why does everything have to depend on me? It’s not fair. I don’t have the ability to do what is necessary. I am not sure anyone else can, either. Perhaps someone is out there with enough qualifications, but that shouldn’t be my problem to consider.
“Go find someone else. If you have a flat tire, do you continue driving the car? Do you send it off on a lengthy expedition, while knowing it will break down soon into the journey? Have some common sense. It is not like I can leap over oceans or anything.”
3. Can’t you call the royal army?
“You are the son of a royal leader. King Dasharatha was one of the renowned fighters born into the Ikshvaku line. There is an entire royal army waiting for you back home. I get it that there is some self-imposed rule preventing you from returning, but come on.
“Get over it already. That was then, this is now. No one will fault you for returning early; they all miss you anyway. That well-trained group of men will be better equipped at finding your missing wife and returning her to safety.”
4. Can’t one of the other Vanaras help?
“Sugriva’s army is full of capable warriors. I have known these Vanaras for a long-time. Though they are forest-dwelling monkeys, they can do extraordinary things. They have passion. They have determination. They have skill, fueled by desire. They just require a little direction. Any one of them would be able to fulfill your mission.”
5. I have my vows to worry about
“Listen, I have certain principles that I live by. I do not peek in on unsuspecting women, especially those who are married. I do not want to interfere with such relations. I try to keep my senses under control. By taking up your mission, I risk committing sin. I would rather not blemish my record, which has been spotless to date.”
The reality is Shri Hanuman jumped into duty, almost immediately. As soon as Sugriva asked that he descend Mount Rishyamukha and intercept the two unknown youths wandering through the area, Hanuman stepped into the role assigned to him. An instant chemistry formed, and he was ready to assist Rama and Lakshmana in any way possible.
During one portion of the subsequent search mission, Hanuman was all by himself and looking through different palaces in the city of Lanka. He noticed that he was probably doing something wrong in observing women in intimate settings.
Yet he also noticed that his mind was not affected. He was still focused on the mission. It was like the lotus flower travelling on the surface of the water. Though in contact with an opposing element of nature, the flower remains unaffected.
Due to the link in consciousness to Shri Rama, Hanuman can continue without strict regard to rules and regulations, though he never haphazardly violates them. His entire conduct inside of Lanka falls within the category of dharma.
Considering the difficulty in weighing different options and trying to keep in line with righteousness, Hanuman becomes all the more glorious. He is an inspiration for every yogi, for every person trying to please God with their work, for everyone who has struggled through a difficult material existence. Only Sita and Rama could have such a wonderful and selfless servant.
Many excuses could have made,
Like not enough money paid.
Or too much risk involved,
Towards sinful life to devolve.
But Hanuman taking the risk,
Searching frantic and brisk.
With dharma entire time aligned,
Destined for Sita Devi to find.
Categories: the five