श्री राम द्वारा ताड़का का वध >> बाल-काण्ड



Rama encounters his first problem-female demoness Tataka, also called as Taadaka, and eliminates her at the orders of sage Vishvamitra. This is a crucial test put to Rama by Vishvamitra in ascertaining whether Rama is the follower of dharma through elder men's orders or not. Rama eradicates Tataka basing on his own self-confidence.

मुनेर् वचनम् अक्लीबम् श्रुत्वा नरवरात्मजः |
राघवः प्राञ्जलिः भूत्वा प्रत्युवाच दृढव्रतः || १-२६-१
On hearing the words of that unfaltering sage about demoness Tataka, Raghava, best man's son who is firm in his vows, reverently adjoining his palms replied the sage. [1-26-1]
पितुर् वचन निर्देशात् पितुर् वचन गौरवात् |
वचनम् कौशिकस्य इति कर्तव्यम् अविशङ्कया || १-२६-२
"Upon my father's order, upon my honour to my father's word, and looking upon this as the word of sage Kushi's son, my mentor, this task is definitely to be implemented. [1-26-2]
अनुशिष्टो अस्मि अयोध्यायाम् गुरु मध्ये महात्मना |
पित्रा दशरथेन अहम् न अवज्ञेयम् च तद् वचः || १-२६-३
"What my great souled father Dasharatha directed me to do among elders in Ayodhya, that word too cannot be disregarded. [1-26-3]
सोऽहम् पितुर्वचः श्रुत्वा शासनाद् ब्रह्म वादिनः |
करिष्यामि न संदेहः ताटका वधम् उत्तमम् || १-२६-४
"Such as I am, I will undertake the primary duty of eliminating Tataka, according as the follower of father's words, and according to the instruction of a Brahma scholar, such as your are, without a doubt. [1-26-4]
गो ब्राह्मण हितार्थाय देशस्य च हिताय च |
तव चैव अप्रमेयस्य वचनम् कर्तुम् उद्यतः || १-२६-५
"I am ready to effectuate the bidding of an inestimable sage like you, for the welfare of cows and Brahmans, and for the advantage of this province." So said Rama to sage Vishvamitra. [1-26-5]
एवम् उक्त्वा धनुर्मध्ये बध्वा मुष्टिम् अरिन्दमः |
ज्या घोषम् अकरोत् तीव्रम् दिशः शब्देन नादयन् || १-२६-६
Saying thus, Rama, the enemy-destroyer, clenched his left fist on the handgrip in the middle of the bow, and with the right he made a thunderous sound of the bowstring making all the directions to blast. [1-26-6]
तेन शब्देन वित्रस्ताः ताटका वन वासिनः |
ताटका च सुसंक्रुद्धा तेन शब्देन मोहिता || १-२६-७
By that sound the inhabitants of Tataka forest are startled, and even Tataka is stupefied by that sound, and she is intolerably infuriated at it. [1-26-7]
तम् शब्दम् अभिनिध्याय राक्षसी क्रोध मूर्चिता |
श्रुत्वा च अभ्यद्रवत् क्रुद्धा यत्र शब्दो विनिस्सृतः || १-२६-८
She who is convulsed in anger to hear that sound gave attention to the direction wherefrom it emerged and she rancorously rushed thereto. [1-26-8]
ताम् दृष्ट्वा राघवः क्रुद्धाम् विकृताम् विकृत आननाम् |
प्रमाणेन अति वृद्धाम् च लक्ष्मणम् सोऽभ्यभाषत || १-२६-९
Raghava on seeing that monstrous-looking demoness with a distorted face and who by proportions is very gigantic, furthermore infuriated, spoke to Lakshmana. [1-26-9]
पश्य लक्ष्मण यक्षिण्या भैरवम् दारुणम् वपुः |
भिद्येरन् दर्शनात् अस्या भीरूणाम् हृदयानि च || १-२६-१०
"Lakshmana, see that yakshii's grisly and ghastly physique, seeing which hearts of cowards are prone to burst. [1-26-10]
एताम् पश्य दुराधर्षाम् माया बल समन्विताम् |
विनिवृत्ताम् करोमि अद्य हृत कर्णाग्र नासिकाम् || १-२६-११
" She is unstoppable and has magical powers, is't, you may see now how I will make her to readily retreat by lopping off her ears and the tip of nose. [1-26-11]
न हि एनाम् उत्सहे हन्तुम् स्त्री स्वभावेन रक्षिताम् |
वीर्यम् च अस्या गतिम् च एव हन्यताम् इति मे मतिः || १-२६-१२
"As it is her feminineness is protecting her, and I too I do not really attempt to kill her, but I intend to terminate her impudence and mobility. [1-26-12]
एवम् ब्रुवाणे रामे तु ताटका क्रोध मूर्छिता |
उद्यंय बाहूम् गर्जन्ती रामम् एव अभ्यधावत || १-२६-१३
While Rama is still speaking that way, convulsed in anger Tataka roaringly rushed towards Rama alone, swinging her arms. [1-26-13]
विश्वामित्रस्तु ब्रह्मर्षिः हुंकारेणा अभिभर्त्स्य ताम् |
स्वस्ति राघवयोः अस्तु जयम् च एव अभ्यभाषत || १-२६-१४
But the Brahma-sage Vishvamitra daunted sounded her off and said to Rama and Lakshmana, "let you be safe, and be victorious." [1-26-14]
उद् धुन्वाना रजो घोरम् ताटका राघवौ उभौ |
रजो मेघेन महता मुहूर्तम् सा व्यमोहयत् || १-२६-१५
Flinging up dreadful dust on those two Raghavaa-s, Tataka baffled them for a while with a massive cloud of dust. [1-26-15]
ततो मायाम् समास्थाय शिला वर्षेण राघवौ |
अवाकिरत् सुमहता ततः चुक्रोध राघवः || १-२६-१६
Then taking hold of witchery she inundated both the Raghava-s with highly torrential stone rain, by which Rama became indignant. [1-26-16]
शिला वर्षम् महत् तस्याः शर वर्षेण राघवः |
प्रतिवार्यो अपधावन्त्याः करौ चिच्छेद पत्रिभिः || १-२६-१७
On forestalling her effusive stone storming with his arrow storm, Rama even mutilated both of her arms with arrows while she rushed towards them. [1-26-17]
ततः च्छिन्न भुजाम् श्रान्ताम् अभ्याशे परिगर्जतीम् |
सौमित्रिः अकरोत् क्रोधात् हृत कर्णाग्र नासिकाम् || १-२६-१८
With her arms severed and fatigued she started to roar extremely at the nearby, and then provoked Lakshmana made her to loose her ears and the tip of nose by cutting them off. [1-26-18]
काम रूपधरा सा तु कृत्वा रूपाणि अनेकशः |
अन्तर्धानम् गता यक्षी मोहयन्ति स्व मायया || १-२६-१९
अश्म वर्षम् विमुंचन्ती भैरवम् विचचार सा ||
That guise changer vanished after variously altering her aspects, and then on baffling them with her illusoriness and discharging stone storms she moved about appallingly. [1-26-19, 20a]
ततः तौ अश्म वर्षेण कीर्यमाणौ समन्ततः || १-२६-२०
दृष्ट्वा गाधि सुतः श्रीईमान् इदम् वचनम् अब्रवीत् |
And on seeing both Rama and Lakshmana who are being overspread by storms of stones from all-over, then the illustrious sage Vishvamitra spoke this sentence. [1-26-20b, 21a]
अलम् ते घृणया राम पापा एषा दुष्ट चारिणी || १-२६-२१
यज्ञ विघ्न करी यक्षी पुरा वर्धेत मायया |
"Enough is your compassion Rama, she is a sinister, behaviourally malevolent, a hinderer of rituals, and this yakshii gets a grip on herself in a short time by her illusory powers. [1-26-21b, 22a]
वध्यताम् तावत् एव एषा पुरा संध्या प्रवर्तते || १-२६-२२
रक्षांसि संध्या काले तु दुर्धर्षाणि भवन्ति हि |
"Sun is going to set in a short time, and only before that time she shall be destroyed, for demons at dusk and afterwards become unassailable, indeed." So said sage Viswamitra to Rama. [1-26-22b, 23a]
इति उक्तः स तु ताम् यक्षीम् अश्म वृष्ट्या अभिवर्षणीम् || १-२६-२३
दर्शयन् शब्द वेधित्वम् ताम् रुरोध स सायकैः |
When Vishvamitra addressed him thus, Rama displaying his capacity in sonic archery forestalled that yakshii who has gone into invisibility and storming stone-storms, with his arrows. [1-26-23b, 24a]
सा रुद्धा बाण जालेन माया बल समन्विता || १-२६-२४
अभि दुद्राव काकुत्स्थम् लक्षमणम् च विनेषुदी ||
And when the arrays of arrows obstructed her who possesses illusional powers, she dashed towards Rama and Lakshmana blaring stridently. [1-26-24b, 25a]
ताम् आपतन्तीम् वेगेन विक्रान्ताम् अशनीम् इव || १-२६-२५
शरेण उरसि विव्याध सा पपात ममार च |
And Rama struck an arrow in her chest who is invading and speedily swooping down like a thunderbolt, and thus she is readily felled down and totally dropped dead, too. [1-26-25b, 26a]
ताम् हताम् भीम संकाशाम् दृष्ट्वा सुरपतिः तदा || १-२६-२६
साधु साध्विति काकुत्स्थम् सुराः च अपि अभिपूजयन् |
On seeing her who is horrendous in her shape is eliminated Indra and other gods have highly esteemed Rama saying, ?admirable, admirable is this act. [1-26-26b, 27a]
उवाच परम प्रीतः सहस्राक्षः पुरन्दरः || १-२६-२७
सुराः च सर्वे संहृष्टा विश्वामित्रम् अथ अब्रुवन् |
The thousand eyed and the destroyer of enemy?s citadels Indra then spoke with high satisfaction, and even all of the gods are gladdened and said to Vishvamitra this way. [1-26-27b, 28a]
मुने कौशिक भद्रम् ते सह इन्द्राः सर्वे मरुद् गणाः || १-२६-२८
तोषिताः कर्मणा अनेन स्नेहम् दर्शय राघवे |
"Oh, sage Vishvamitra, you are blessed, all the groups of wind-gods along with Indra are pleased, so you please show more concern for Raghava. [1-26-28b, 29a]
प्रजापतेः कृशाश्वस्य पुत्रान् सत्य पराक्रमान् || १-२६-२९
तपो बल भृतो ब्रह्मन् राघवाय निवेदय |
"The sons of Prajapati Krishasva who are valiant by their virtue and who possess ascetic strength, oh, Brahman, they may be offered to Raghava. [1-26-29,b, 30a]
पात्रभूतः च ते ब्रह्मन् तव अनुगमने रतः || १-२६-३०
कर्तव्यम् सुमहत् कर्म सुराणाम् राज सूनुना |
"Rama is steadfast in following your assignments and thus he is the worthy receiver of those missiles, and this prince has to accomplish a very great deed of gods.? So said gods to Vishvamitra. [1-26-30b, 31a]
एवम् उक्त्वा सुराः सर्वे जग्मुर् हृष्टा विहायसम् || १-२६-३१
विश्वामित्रम् पूजयन् ततः संध्या प्रवर्तते |
All the gods on saying thus and on extolling Vishvamitra they contentedly returned to heavens, and then the sunset has come to pass. [1-26-31b, 32a]
ततो मुनिवरः प्रीतः ताटका वध तोषितः || १-२६-३२
मूर्ध्नि रामम् उपाघ्राय इदम् वचनम् अब्रवीत् |
That best sage is satisfied with Rama and gladdened for the eradication of Tataka kissed the forehead of and then said this sentence. [1-26-32b, 33a]
इह अद्य रजनीम् राम वसाम शुभ दर्शन || १-२६-३३
श्वः प्रभाते गमिष्यामः तद् आश्रम पदम् मम |
"Here we stay for tonight, Rama, the august one for a gaze, and tomorrow morning we will go to that hermitage of mine.? So said Vishvamitra to Rama. [1-26-33b, 34a]
विश्वामित्रः वचः श्रुत्वा हृष्टो दशरधात्मजः || १-२६-३४
उवास रजनीम् तत्र ताटकाया वने सुखम् |
On listening sage Vishvamitra's words, Dasharatha's son Rama, comfortably stayed that night there in that forest of Tataka. [1-26-34]
मुक्त शापम् वनम् तत् च तस्मिन् एव तत् आहनि |
रमणीयम् विबभ्राज यथा चैत्र रथम् वनम् || १-२६-३५
On that very day alone that forest of Tataka too is released from the curse, and it shone forth like the luxurious heavenly garden of Kubera, namely Chiatra Ratha. [1-26-35b, c]
निहत्य ताम् यक्ष सुताम् स रामः
प्रशस्यमानः सुर सिद्ध सन्घैः |
उवास तस्मिन् मुनिना सह एव
प्रभात वेलाम् प्रति बोध्यमानः || १-२६-३६
Rama while being eulogised by the groups of celestials and liberated Souls for complete elimination of yaksha's daughter, namely Tataka, stayed there along with the sage only to be awakened by the next day?s sunrise. [1-26-36]
इति वाल्मीकि रामायणे आदिकाव्ये बाल काण्डे षड्विंशः सर्गः