Baala Kaanda - Sarga 37
The symbolism of the previous Sarga continues here. This Sarga, on the surface, narrates the story of the birth of powerful Kārtikēya, who is born as a result of Agni impregnating Gaṅga with the energy of Ṡiva.

Three thick imageries run in parallel in this Sarga, making it as gripping as it is.

Firstly, the birth of Kārtikēya serves the divine purpose (he becomes the chief of armies of Dēvas, to keep the disturbing forces at bay).

Secondly, the energy transforms the matter to give rise to various minerals on the earth.

Thirdly, the passionate love and glorious feeding of the new born is described in anthropomorphic terms.

One needs the imagination of a child or an artist or a poet, to enjoy this overlaid trio of symbolisms. It is difficult for people to enjoy this Sarga if logic happened to be their only tool.

The relationship between male and female has four layers: The physical layer (the bodies coming together with fervent desire), the psychological layer (the love and romance that binds each other, where they feel both the presence and the absence of each other), the social layer (they become part of an acceptable and respectable social contract, defined in the context of the institution of marriage and other related social institutions) and the spiritual layer (the two primordial halves of the universe coming together, to celebrate and to give birth to new forms).

Agni and Gaṅga who give birth to Kārtikēya operate in the physical and spiritual layers. They are not bound by psychological or social layers (which is the case with the bond between Rāma and Seetā). The intent for their coming together is spiritual, to create a force needed for a divine purpose. The fervor of their union is physical, unfettered and total.

Every being in the universe is energy packed into matter. Humans are energy packed into matter. Your smart phone or computer is energy packed into matter.

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Packing energy into matter creates the 'operational field of action'. This is when Avyakta (unmanifest) becomes Vyakta (manifested). This is the essence of Vibhuti Yoga in Bhagavad Gita.

As a simple example think of Android or iOS. It cannot be 'seen' (Avyakta). But you can feel and use it when packed into matter (your smart phone). Packing energy into matter can not only be promising, but also dangerous if things go wrong.

The probability of such unexpected consequences is of concern to any conscientious person. This concern is a theme that runs throughout the stories of Indic Civilization, like it does in this story.

Enjoy the Sarga in all its layers. If needed, read it multiple times. Get lifted to the subtle and poetic realms that the author intended to feast you with.
1.37.1
தப்யமாநே தபோ தேவே தேவா: ஸர்ஷிகணா: புரா ।
ஸேநாபதிமபீப்ஸந்த: பிதாமஹமுபாகமந் ॥
tapyamānē tapō dēvē dēvāḥ sarṣigaṇāḥ purā ।
sēnāpatimabhīpsantaḥ pitāmahamupāgaman ॥
A long, long time ago, Ṡiva
the Lord of Lords was in deep Tapa.
The Dēvas wanted to have a chief for their armies.
All of them together, along with Ṛshis, went to Brahma.

1.37.2
ததோऽப்ருவந் ஸுரா: ஸர்வே பகவந்தம் பிதாமஹம் ।
ப்ரணிபத்ய ஸுரா: ஸர்வே ஸேந்த்ரா: ஸாக்நிபுரோகமா: ॥
tatō'bruvan surāḥ sarvē bhagavantaṃ pitāmaham ।
praṇipatya surāḥ sarvē sēndrāḥ sāgnipurōgamāḥ ॥
All the Dēvas, led by Indra and Agni
bowed to Bhagawan Brahma and said:
1.37.3
யோ ந: ஸேநாபதிர்தேவ தத்தோ பகவதா புரா ।
தப: பரமமாஸ்தாய தப்யதே ஸ்ம ஸஹோமயா ॥
yō naḥ sēnāpatirdēva dattō bhagavatā purā ।
tapaḥ paramamāsthāya tapyatē sma sahōmayā ॥
You had given us Lord Ṡiva as the
chief of armies, once upon a time.
But now he is in deep Tapa, along with Uma.
1.37.4
யதத்ராநந்தரம் கார்யம் லோகாநாம் ஹிதகாம்யயா ।
ஸம்விதத்ஸ்வ விதாநஜ்ஞ த்வம் ஹி ந: பரமா கதி: ॥
yadatrānantaraṃ kāryaṃ lōkānāṃ hitakāmyayā ।
saṃvidhatsva vidhānaj˝a tvaṃ hi naḥ paramā gatiḥ ॥
You are very wise and conscientious.
Please give a thought as to how to proceed henceforth,
to ensure the well-being of all the Lōkas.

Whenever you approach a senior (at home or at work) just hint at the problem, not the solution, because they would have more cards at their disposal to play with than you know.
1.37.5
தேவதாநாம் வச: ஸ்ருத்வா ஸர்வலோகபிதாமஹ: ।
ஸாந்த்வயந் மதுரைர்வாக்யைஸ்த்ரிதஸாநிதமப்ரவீத் ॥
dēvatānāṃ vacaḥ ṡrutvā sarvalōkapitāmahaḥ ।
sāntvayan madhurairvākyaistridaṡānidamabravīt ॥
Hearing the plea of Dēvas, the progenitor of all worlds,
consoled them, and said the following words of relief:
1.37.6
ஸைலபுத்ர்யா யதுக்தம் தந்ந ப்ரஜா: ஸந்து பத்நிஷு ।
தஸ்யா வசநமக்லிஷ்டம் ஸத்யமேதந்ந ஸம்ஸய: ॥
ṡailaputryā yaduktaṃ tanna prajāḥ santu patniṣu ।
tasyā vacanamakliṣṭaṃ satyamētanna saṃṡayaḥ ॥
Because of the curse laid upon you
by the daughter of Himavān,
you cannot have children with your wives.
For sure, her words would not go in vain.
1.37.7
இயமாகாஸகா கங்கா யஸ்யாம் புத்ரம் ஹுதாஸந: ।
ஜநயிஷ்யதி தேவாநாம் ஸேநாபதிமரிந்தமம் ॥
iyamākāṡagā gaṅgā yasyāṃ putraṃ hutāṡanaḥ ।
janayiṣyati dēvānāṃ sēnāpatimarindamam ॥
But, Agni can have a son with Gaṅga that is in heavens now,
who can become the chief of your armies,
that would put all the detractors in check.
1.37.8
ஜ்யேஷ்டா ஸைலேந்த்ரதுஹிதா மாநயிஷ்யதி தத்ஸுதம் ।
உமாயாஸ்தத்பஹுமதம் பவிஷ்யதி ந ஸம்ஸய: ॥
jyēṣṭhā ṡailēndraduhitā mānayiṣyati tatsutam ।
umāyāstadbahumataṃ bhaviṣyati na saṃṡayaḥ ॥
Gaṅga, the elder daughter of the king among mountains,
would certainly bear a son for Agni.
And Uma should certainly be agreeable to it!
1.37.9
தச்ச்ருத்வா வசநம் தஸ்ய க்ருதார்தா ரகுநந்தந ।
ப்ரணிபத்ய ஸுரா: ஸர்வே பிதாமஹமபூஜயந் ॥
tacchrutvā vacanaṃ tasya kṛtārthā raghunandana ।
praṇipatya surāḥ sarvē pitāmahamapūjayan ॥
O prince of Raghu dynasty!
With those words, the purpose of the Dēvas was served.
They all bowed to the progenitor of the worlds.
1.37.10
தே கத்வா பர்வதம் ராம கைலாஸம் தாதுமண்டிதம் ।
அக்நிம் நியோஜயாமாஸு: புத்ரார்தம் ஸர்வதைவதா: ॥
tē gatvā parvataṃ rāma kailāsaṃ dhātumaṇḍitam ।
agniṃ niyōjayāmāsuḥ putrārthaṃ sarvadaivatāḥ ॥
O Rāma! They left for Mount Kailāsa
that is bountiful in all minerals
and asked Agni to proceed to have a son:
1.37.11
தேவகார்யமிதம் தேவ ஸம்விதத்ஸ்வ ஹுதாஸந ।
ஸைலபுத்ர்யாம் மஹாதேஜோ கங்காயாம் தேஜ உத்ஸ்ருஜ ॥
dēvakāryamidaṃ dēva saṃvidhatsva hutāṡana ।
ṡailaputryāṃ mahātējō gaṅgāyāṃ tēja utsṛja ॥
O Agni, the brilliant god of fire!
You are here to serve the purpose of all Dēvas.
Please deposit the Energy (of Ṡiva)
that you are holding, in Gaṅga,
the daughter of the king among mountains.
1.37.12
தேவதாநாம் ப்ரதிஜ்ஞாய கங்காமப்யேத்ய பாவக: ।
கர்பம் தாரய வை தேவி தேவதாநாமிதம் ப்ரியம் ॥
dēvatānāṃ pratij˝āya gaṅgāmabhyētya pāvakaḥ ।
garbhaṃ dhāraya vai dēvi dēvatānāmidaṃ priyam ॥
Agni, the god of fire promised
the Dēvas that he would do accordingly.
He approached Gaṅga and asked,
"Please become pregnant for the purpose
of serving a divine cause!"
1.37.13
தஸ்ய தத்வசநம் ஸ்ருத்வா திவ்யம் ரூபமதாரயத் ।
த்ருஷ்ட்வா தந்மஹிமாநம் ஸ ஸமந்தாதவகீர்யத ॥
tasya tadvacanaṃ ṡrutvā divyaṃ rūpamadhārayat ।
dṛṣṭvā tanmahimānaṃ sa samantādavakīryata ॥
Hearing those words, Gaṅga took a splendid and divine form.
Agni saw her and spread himself all over her.

Imagine fire engulfing water and it becoming formless as vapor!
1.37.14
ஸமந்ததஸ்ததா தேவீமப்யஷிஞ்சத பாவக: ।
ஸர்வஸ்ரோதாம்ஸி பூர்ணாநி கங்காயா ரகுநந்தந ॥
samantatastadā dēvīmabhyaṣi˝cata pāvakaḥ ।
sarvasrōtāṃsi pūrṇāni gaṅgāyā raghunandana ॥
O prince of Raghu dynasty!
That god of fire, then showered the energy all over her,
sensitizing every part of her being.
1.37.15-16a
தமுவாச ததோ கங்கா ஸர்வதேவபுரோஹிதம் ।
அஸக்தா தாரணே தேவ தவ தேஜ: ஸமுத்ததம் ॥
தஹ்யமாநாக்நிநா தேந ஸம்ப்ரவ்யதிதசேதநா ।
tamuvāca tatō gaṅgā sarvadēvapurōhitam ।
aṡaktā dhāraṇē dēva tava tējaḥ samuddhatam ॥
dahyamānāgninā tēna sampravyathitacētanā ।
Gaṅga then said to that Agni,
the foremost of all the Dēvas:
I am now set on fire. My senses are being shaken.
I am not able to take in your
entire Energy. It is overflowing.
1.37.16b-17a
அதாப்ரவீதிதம் கங்காம் ஸர்வதேவஹுதாஸந: ॥
இஹ ஹைமவதே பாதே கர்போऽயம் ஸந்நிவேஸ்யதாம் ।
athābravīdidaṃ gaṅgāṃ sarvadēvahutāṡanaḥ ॥
iha haimavatē pādē garbhō'yaṃ sannivēṡyatām ।
The god of fire, who takes in all
the Havis given to all the Dēvas, said to Gaṅga:
Leave out the resulting new life on
the foothills of these Himalayas.
1.37.17b-18a
ஸ்ருத்வா த்வக்நிவசோ கங்கா தம் கர்பமதிபாஸ்வரம் ॥
உத்ஸஸர்ஜ மஹாதேஜ: ஸ்ரோதோப்யோ ஹி ததாநக ।
ṡrutvā tvagnivacō gaṅgā taṃ garbhamatibhāsvaram ॥
utsasarja mahātējaḥ srōtōbhyō hi tadānagha ।
O unafflicted one! (Rāma)!
In accordance with those words of Agni,
Gaṅga left the resulting life, from
all her senses and all her being.
1.37.18b-19a
யதஸ்யா நிர்கதம் தஸ்மாத்தப்தஜாம்பூநதப்ரபம் ।
காஞ்சநம் தரணீம் ப்ராப்தம் ஹிரண்யமமலம் ஸுபம் ॥
yadasyā nirgataṃ tasmāttaptajāmbūnadaprabham ।
kā˝canaṃ dharaṇīṃ prāptaṃ hiraṇyamamalaṃ ṡubham ॥
What came from her became the
precious and lustrous metal gold
and the pure and clear silver.

Several symbolisms are running in parallel here. Agni represents the energy. Gaṅga represents the liquid form of the matter. The conjecture is that all metals and minerals carry with them the brilliance of fire and malleability and the power of water.

Cosmic interactions between two primary elements of nature, water and fire are anthropomorphized here.
1.37.19b-20
தாம்ரம் கார்ஷ்ணாயஸம் சைவ தைக்ஷ்ண்யாதேவாப்யஜாயத ।
மலம் தஸ்யாபவத்தத்ர த்ரபு ஸீஸகமேவ ச ॥
ததேதத்தரணீம் ப்ராப்ய நாநாதாதுரவர்த்தத ॥
tāmraṃ kārṣṇāyasaṃ caiva taikṣṇyādēvābhyajāyata ।
malaṃ tasyābhavattatra trapu sīsakamēva ca ॥
tadētaddharaṇīṃ prāpya nānādhāturavarddhata ॥
Their very radiance gave rise to
the metals copper and iron.
The left over impurities became the
metals tin and lead.
Similarly the earth has begotten
all the other minerals and metals
from the same source.
1.37.21
நிக்ஷிப்தமாத்ரே கர்பே து தேஜோபிரபிரஞ்ஜிதம் ।
ஸர்வம் பர்வதஸந்நத்தம் ஸௌவர்ணமபவத்வநம் ॥
nikṣiptamātrē garbhē tu tējōbhirabhira˝jitam ।
sarvaṃ parvatasannaddhaṃ sauvarṇamabhavadvanam ॥
The very presence of that life made all
the forests of that entire range of mountains
luscious and brilliant, with a golden glitter.
1.37.22
ஜாதரூபமிதி க்யாதம் ததாப்ரப்ருதி ராகவ ।
ஸுவர்ணம் புருஷவ்யாக்ர ஹுதாஸநஸமப்ரபம் ॥
த்ருணவ்ருக்ஷலதாகுல்மம் ஸர்வம் பவதி காஞ்சநம் ॥
jātarūpamiti khyātaṃ tadāprabhṛti rāghava ।
suvarṇaṃ puruṣavyāghra hutāṡanasamaprabham ॥
tṛṇavṛkṣalatāgulmaṃ sarvaṃ bhavati kā˝canam ॥
O Rāma, tiger among men!
Because of that origin,
gold is known to have acquired the brilliance of fire.
The trees, vines, shrubs and grasses
reflect that brilliant gold.
1.37.23
தம் குமாரம் ததோ ஜாதம் ஸேந்த்ரா: ஸஹ மருத்கணா: ।
க்ஷீரஸம்பாவநார்தாய க்ருத்திகா: ஸமயோஜயந் ॥
taṃ kumāraṃ tatō jātaṃ sēndrāḥ saha marudgaṇāḥ ।
kṣīrasambhāvanārthāya kṛttikāḥ samayōjayan ॥
The Dēvas along with Indra,
called upon Kṛttikas to suckle the new born.
Kṛttikas are a constellation of six stars.
1.37.24
தா: க்ஷீரம் ஜாதமாத்ரஸ்ய க்ருத்வா ஸமயமுத்தமம் ।
தது: புத்ரோऽயமஸ்மாகம் ஸர்வாஸாமிதி நிஸ்சிதா: ॥
tāḥ kṣīraṃ jātamātrasya kṛtvā samayamuttamam ।
daduḥ putrō'yamasmākaṃ sarvāsāmiti niṡcitāḥ ॥
They fed him, taking turns among themselves.
Each one of them treated the new born as herown offspring.
1.37.25
ததஸ்து தேவதா: ஸர்வா: கார்திகேய இதி ப்ருவந் ।
புத்ரஸ்த்ரைலோக்யவிக்யாதோ பவிஷ்யதி ந ஸம்ஸய: ॥
tatastu dēvatāḥ sarvāḥ kārtikēya iti bruvan ।
putrastrailōkyavikhyātō bhaviṣyati na saṃṡayaḥ ॥
All the Dēvas, then said that this infant will be known
in all the three worlds as Kārtikēya, for certain.
Kārtikēya means, son of Kṛttikas.
1.37.26
தேஷாம் தத்வசநம் ஸ்ருத்வா ஸ்கந்நம் கர்பபரிஸ்ரவே ।
ஸ்நாபயந் பரயா லக்ஷ்ம்யா தீப்யமாநம் யதாநலம் ॥
tēṣāṃ tadvacanaṃ ṡrutvā skannaṃ garbhaparisravē ।
snāpayan parayā lakṣmyā dīpyamānaṃ yathānalam ॥
As they were saying thus, the new born,
who slid out during that miscarriage,
shining with a luster like that of fire
was given his first bath.
1.37.27
ஸ்கந்த இத்யப்ருவந் தேவா: ஸ்கந்நம் கர்பபரிஸ்ரவாத் ।
கார்திகேயம் மஹாபாகம் காகுத்ஸ்த ஜ்வலநோபமம் ॥
skanda ityabruvan dēvāḥ skannaṃ garbhaparisravāt ।
kārtikēyaṃ mahābhāgaṃ kākutstha jvalanōpamam ॥
O prince of Kākutstha lineage!
Dēvas also called Kārtikēya,
who was comparable with Agni,
as Skanda (the one who slid out),
because he slid out of a miscarriage.
1.37.28
ப்ராதுர்பூதம் தத: க்ஷீரம் க்ருத்திகாநாமநுத்தமம் ।
ஷண்ணாம் ஷடாநநோ பூத்வா ஜக்ராஹ ஸ்தநஜம் பய: ॥
prādurbhūtaṃ tataḥ kṣīraṃ kṛttikānāmanuttamam ।
ṣaṇṇāṃ ṣaḍānanō bhūtvā jagrāha stanajaṃ payaḥ ॥
The six Kṛttikas, then, had exceptional lactation.
And the new born developed six faces to
to take milk from the breasts of all the six Kṛttikas.
1.37.29
க்ருஹீத்வா க்ஷீரமேகாஹ்நா ஸுகுமாரவபுஸ்ததா ।
அஜயத்ஸ்வேந வீர்யேண தைத்யஸைந்யகணாந் விபு: ॥
gṛhītvā kṣīramēkāhnā sukumāravapustadā ।
ajayatsvēna vīryēṇa daityasainyagaṇān vibhuḥ ॥
That delicate young infant, by taking milk just for a day,
became mighty strong to conquer the armies of Daityas.
1.37.30
ஸுரஸேநாகணபதிம் ததஸ்தமதுலத்யுதிம் ।
அப்யஷிஞ்சந் ஸுரகணா: ஸமேத்யாக்நிபுரோகமா: ॥
surasēnāgaṇapatiṃ tatastamatuladyutim ।
abhyaṣi˝can suragaṇāḥ samētyāgnipurōgamāḥ ॥
All the Dēvas, together with Agni, the god of fire, then
anointed that extremely radiant one as
the chief of the armies of the Dēvas.
1.37.31
ஏஷ தே ராம கங்காயா விஸ்தரோऽபிஹிதோ மயா ।
குமாரஸம்பவஸ்சைவ தந்ய: புண்யஸ்ததைவ ச ॥
ēṣa tē rāma gaṅgāyā vistarō'bhihitō mayā ।
kumārasambhavaṡcaiva dhanyaḥ puṇyastathaiva ca ॥
Rāma, this is the auspicious story of Gaṅga
and the birth of Kārtikēya, in detail.
1.37.32
பக்தஸ்ச ய: கார்திகேயே காகுத்ஸ்த புவி மாநவ: ।
ஆயுஷ்மாந் புத்ரபௌத்ரைஸ்ச ஸ்கந்தஸாலோக்யதாம் வ்ரஜேத் ॥
bhaktaṡca yaḥ kārtikēyē kākutstha bhuvi mānavaḥ ।
āyuṣmān putrapautraiṡca skandasālōkyatāṃ vrajēt ॥
O prince of Kākutstha lineage!
Those on this eart, who worship Kārtikēya
will have a long and happy life
with many children and grand children
and will reach the world of Skanda at the end.

This Ṡlōka reflects an age old tradition. At the conclusion of any story related to the realms of divinity, the author would exalt the spiritual value such a story would bring upon the reader.


இத்யார்ஷே ஸ்ரீமத்ராமாயணே வால்மீகீயே ஆதிகாவ்யே
ஸ்ரீமத்பாலகாண்டே ஸப்தத்ரிம்ஸ: ஸர்க: ॥
ityārṣē ṡrīmadrāmāyaṇē vālmīkīyē ādikāvyē
ṡrīmadbālakāṇḍē saptatriṃṡaḥ sargaḥ ॥
Thus concludes the thirty seventh Sarga
in Bāla Kāṇḍa of the glorious Rāmāyaṇa,
the first ever poem of humankind,
composed by Vālmeeki.

We completed reading 1153 Ṡlōkas out of ~24,000 Ṡlōkas of Vālmeeki Rāmāyaṇa.