Mythstories Mythstories

Rama Hunting

Rama would live out his exile as a hermit turning aside all trappings of his former life. He went barefoot with his faithful companions, Sita and Lakshmana deep into the Dandaka forest to build a hermitage.

Life in the forest, although lived in poverty, was a great joy to all three. Their love for each other and the pleasure they found in their surroundings sustained them.

Then, one day, their paths crossed with a grotesque demon so ugly they could hardly bear to look at her. It was Surpanakha, the sister of Ravana who lived close by with her brother Khara who ruled over the forest for Ravana. As soon as she saw Rama she fell in love and wanted him for herself. Rama and Lakshmana taunted her and told her to be gone. She rose in anger and flew at Sita, blaming her for keeping Rama's love from her. Rama flung her aside and told Lakshmana to punish her. Lakshmana, with a single flourish of his sword, cut off the crone's ears and nose and sent her on her way.

Surpanakha rushed to Khara who gathered up his demon horde and sped to kill Rama and his followers. No matter how many demons came forward Rama let forth arrows to pierce their hearts and soon they were all dead or defeated. Surpanakha, who had witnessed the battle and the death of her brother, fled to Lanka to tell Ravana.

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