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This Volume no. 2 continues with the English narration of the Story of Lord Ram as described in the devotional classic known as ‘Ram Charit Manas’ written by Goswami Tulsidas, from where we had left it in volume no. 1, i.e. Doha no. 97.
The entire Book ‘Ram Charit Manas’ is divided into 7 Cantos, named Baal Kand, Ayodhya Kand, Aranya Kand, Kishkindha Kand, Sundar Kand, Lanka Kand, and Uttar Kand.
Since my English rendering of this Holy Book is a voluminous one, it is divided into many volumes. The present volume no. 2 contains Part 2 of Canto 1, known as the ‘Baal Kand’ of Ram Charit Manas. It covers the Text from Chaupai line no. 1 that precedes Doha no. 98—to Doha no. 239.
The topics covered in this volume 2 are the following: (i) The 2nd part of the episode of Lord Shiva’s marriage with Parvati; (ii) Conversation between Lord Shiva and his consort goddess Uma; (iii) The different reasons why the Supreme Being manifested Himself as Lord Ram; (iv) Narad’s delusions and his cursing Lord Vishnu; Narad’s repentance; (v) The Tapa (austerities & penances) of king Manu and his wife Satrupa; Lord Vishnu granting them their wish that He would become their son; (vi) The story of king Pratapbhanu, and how he was cursed to become a demon (Ravana) along with his kith and kin; (vii) The establishment of the Demon Kingdom led by their king Ravana; the terror and cruelty perpetrated by them; (viii) The Gods, Mother Earth and great Sages pray to the Supreme Being to deliver them from the tyranny unleashed by Ravana and his demon warriors; the Lord’s promise to come down personally as Lord Ram to restore law and order in this world; (ix) Birth of Lord Ram and his three brothers, Bharat, Laxman and Shatrughan, in the royal household of Dasrath, the illustrious king of Ayodhya; celebrations to mark the advent of the Lord; (x) The Naming Ceremony (the christening) of the four brothers; the childhood days of Lord Ram; (xi) Arrival of sage Vishwamitra in Ayodhya to take Lord Ram and Laxman with him to protect his fire sacrifice; Departure from Ayodhya; the slaying of Tadka en-route to the sage’s hermitage; the slaying of the demons led by Marich and Subahu, and their demon army as they tried to defile the sage’s fire sacrifice; (xii) Sage Vishwamitra leaves for Janakpur with Lord Ram and Laxman to attend the ‘Bow-Breaking Ceremony’; liberation of Ahilya, the wife of sage Gautam; (xiii) Arrival of the trio, i.e. sage Vishwamitra, Lord Lord Ram and Laxman, at Janakpur; meeting with King Janak; the visitors given proper lodgings by the king; (xiv) Lord Ram and Laxman go to see the sights of the city of Janakpur; the citizens are mesmerized by their charm; (xv) Lord Ram meets Sita in the royal garden; their mutual affection and bonding; the conversation between Lord Ram and Laxman; sage Vishwamitra’s blessings; invitation by King Janak to attend Sita’s ‘Bow-Breaking Ceremony’.
Our Book contains the Original Text of Ram Charit Manas followed by Roman Transliteration of the verses, and then a comprehensive and analytical narrative of the Text in English, explaining it thoroughly and from different perspectives verse-by-verse, aided by detailed notes and references.
The other volumes that follow in this series will carry on with the magnificent narrative of Ram Charit Manas in a step-wise manner.