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Life of Deity Hanuman

Origin of Deity Hanuman

Deity Hanumān was born as the son of Vanar rāj (king) Kesari (father) and Anjani (mother). He belonged to the monkey (vanar) race and was very powerful.

He is also known as Bajarang Bali. It consists of two words: Bajarang and Bali. Bajarang means with a strong iron-like body. Bali means all powerful.

Other names of Deity Hanuman are Pavan-Putra (meaning son of Vāyu or wind), Māruti, Kesari-nandana (son of Kesari), Anjani-putra and Anjaneya (son of Anjani).

Deity Hanuman is the incarnation of Deity Shiva. Deity Shiva took birth in the form of Hanuman to serve Shrīrām and destroy Ravan, the demon king of Lanka.

Deity Hanuman was very strong, intelligent and kind to all the living beings. He was a worshipper and devote of Shriram. He believed in devotion and sacrifice.

Deity Hanuman's birthday (Hanuman Jayantī) is on the full moon day (Pournimā) of the Hindu lunar month of Chaitra.


Meeting with Shriram

When Deity Hanuman grew up He became a minister at the court of Sugreeva, the King of Kishkindha. Vali was the elder brother of Sugreeva. Once Vali, who was fighting with a rakshasa (demon), entered a cave with his opponent; he did not come out for a long time. Blood began to flow from the cave, so Sugreeva thought that Vali was dead. He returned to Kishkindha and became its king. But a little later, Vali returned and drove out Sugreeva. Sugreeva and his ministers hid themselves in the Malaya mountains; Vali could not enter this region.

When Shriram, His wife Deity Sītā and His brother Lakshman were in the forest, a rakshasa by name of Ravan took Deity Sita away by force. Shriram was in great grief. He was wandering the forests in search of Her when He came to the Malaya mountains. Sugreeva saw Him there with Lakshman. Sugreeva and his companions were very fearful that Vali had sent Shriram and Lakshman to kill them. So Sugreeva was very anxious to know who those handsome young men were. Whom should he send to talk to Them? Finally he chose Deity Hanuman.

Deity Hanuman, on the orders of Sugreeva, had masked Himself as a Brāhman to try and find out if the two mighty bowmen had really been sent by Vali, the vengeful brother of Sugreeva. However on seeing Them, all doubts were immediately wiped from the mind of Deity Hanuman. He immediately revealed His true form.

Deity Hanuman was an excellent ambassador. He could easily understand the nature of other people. As soon as He saw Shriram and Lakshman, He realised that they were not deceivers but noble persons. In soft and pleasing words He asked them who they were and told them about Himself. Shriram was very happy when He heard the words of Deity Hanuman. He said to Lakshman, "Did you hear His words? Even an enemy with his sword drawn would be pacified by such words. If a ruler has such a messenger, his efforts will always be successful."

Deity Hanuman took Shriram and Lakshman to Sugreeva. He had hopes that these brave young men would make Sugreeva king again.

Powerful Deity Hanuman

Shriram and Sugreeva promised to help each other. One of the things Sugreeva did was to send Deity Hanuman to look for Deity Sita. When Deity Hanuman was searching for Deity Sita, He met Sampati who was brother of Jatayu. Jatayu was killed while he was trying to stop Deity Sita from being kidnapped by Ravan. Sampati told Deity Hanuman that he had seen Deity Sita being kept prisoner in the Ashokvatika in Lanka.

When Deity Hanuman reached Lanka and met Ravan, Ravan did not offer Deity Hanuman a chair to sit on.

So Deity Hanuman created His own throne by extending His tail, coiling it under Him and then sitting on top of it, in front of Ravan.

Ravan was shocked to see this and called on his demons to set Deity Hanuman's tail on fire. Ravan's soldiers started tying rags to Deity Hanuman's tail to set it on fire. As they did that, Deity Hanuman made His tail longer and longer. The exhausted demons stopped trying to tie more rags and set fire to His tail.

Now it was Deity Hanuman's turn. With His tail on fire, He jumped all over Lanka, setting the entire city ablaze.

When the battle between Ravan and Shriram was being fought, Lakshman got hit with an arrow. The vaidya (doctor) told Shriram that if Lakshman smelled a shrub called 'Sanjivani' from the mountain 'Gandhamadan' He will recover. Deity Hanuman went to the mountain but as He could not recognize the shrub, He uprooted the entire mountain and brought it to the doctor.

Deity Hanuman the perfect devotee

Deity Hanuman is a pure devotee and a prefect servant of Shriram. Everything that He did was only to please Shriram, whether it was building bridges, fighting demons or flying across the country to fetch life saving herbs. When He saw Deity Sita in Ravan's Lanka, He not only delivered the message of Shriram to Her but also destroyed the forest, killed many demons and burnt down half of Lanka. Deity Hanuman never expected anything in return from Shriram.

Deity Hanuman had a special place in the heart of Shriram. Deity Hanuman's devotion to Shriram was profound. Anything and everything, without Him, seemed futile to Deity Hanuman. Once, when Deity Sita presented a pearl necklace to Him, He tried to find Shriram in each pearl. When He couldn't, He was disappointed and He tore it apart and threw it away.

She was surprised and asked for an explanation. In reply, Deity Hanuman tore open His chest with His nails and showed everyone the word 'Shriram' engraved on His heart.
Even today the idol of Deity Hanuman, the god of protection, is found in the temples of Shriram.

Deity Hanuman's devotion and obedience to Shriram

Once, after Shriram returned to His kingdom from exile, a group of Sages started arguing about the superiority of The Gods Name over The God Himself. Many opinions were given, yet they were not able to come to any conclusion, so they approached Sage Nārada. Sage Narada requested a few days' time to give an answer to this question.

Sage Narada thought it best to seek Deity Hanuman's help in solving the problem. He approached Deity Hanuman and requested His assistance. Deity Hanuman agreed. Sage Narada told Deity Hanuman, "Make some mischief that will enrage Shriram's Guru so much that He will order Shriram to punish You. Then leave the rest to me."

Deity Hanuman at once started working on this task. As expected, Shriram's Guru became very angry at Deity Hanuman and told  Shriram, "Tomorrow morning You must punish Deity Hanuman for the wrong that He has done. In front of the Sages and all the townspeople, You will aim Your powerful arrows at Him so that all will witness and learn a lesson about what happens when one annoys the Guru." Shriram was surprised at His devoted servitor's behaviour. But, He had complete obedience unto His Guru, so He accepted the Guru's instruction and went back to His palace with a heavy heart. In the meantime Sage Narada told Deity Hanuman to chant Shriram's Name when  Shriram shot the arrows at Him.

The next day dawned and all the Sages and townspeople gathered next to the river to witness the punishment that would be given to Deity Hanuman. Shriram with a very heavy heart aimed His first arrow at Deity Hanuman and let go. The arrow headed straight for Deity Hanuman but changed direction at the last moment and fell to the ground without touching Him. Deity Hanuman was standing with His eyes closed, chanting Shriram's Name deeply. All the arrows that Shriram aimed at Deity Hanuman missed Him and went in different directions.

When the arrows were exhausted,Shriram looked at His Guru, Who then asked Shriram to use the Divine weapon (Brahmāstra) that would not miss Its target. At that point Sage Narada interrupted and convinced the Guru, "O great Sage, You are great among the Gurus. By forgiving Deity Hanuman, You could give the best example of being a loving and compassionate Guru." The Guru listened to Sage Narada's advice and forgave  Deity Hanuman.

When the incident was over, Sage Narada approached all the Sages gathered at the river. They had got their answer through this incident and unanimously agreed on the power of The God's Name.

Moral: This story shows the power of God's Name. It also shows Deity Hanuman's devotion to Shriram and His obedience. We too can be protected completely as Deity Hanuman was, by chanting the all-powerful Name of God with devotion and by developing obedience through listening to our elders.

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