“Legend has it that lord hanuman was an incarnation of lord shiv. There are several stories related to the “birth of hanuman.”
King Ambarish’s Dilemma
Once, a king named Ambarish ruled Ayodhya. He was a kind and famous ruler. A lot of sages visited his kingdom.
One day, two sages, Narad and Parvat, visited Ambarish’s kingdom.
Narad and Arvat were known for their wit and wisdom.
Ambarish welcomed them respectfully and performed the formal rituals of honour.
Ambarish’s daughter Shrimati was one of the most beautiful princesses on earth at that time.
Shrimati came to greet the sages in the court. Both Narad and Parvat fell in love with Shrimati and expressed their desire to marry her.
Ambarish became confused and said, “o respected sages, i have only one daughter. I need some time to think. I have to find out which of you is more suitable for her. Please wait patiently.”
Sage Narad’ Proposal
King Ambarish was wondering who between Narad and Parvat would be more suitable for his daughter.
Narad saw this and said, “O mighty King, | am a suitable groom for your daughter, as I am older than Parvat.”
But Parvat protested when he heard Narad’s statement. He said, “I proposed first, so I am more suitable.”
Ambarish got irritated when he heard Narad and Parvat arguing; he decided to hold a swayamvar where the bride herself would chose her bridegroom.
He instructed Narad and Parvat, “O sages, kindly come tomorrow morning. Shrimati will choose a suitable groom for herself.”
Narad was not confident about his looks. So, he visited Lord Vishnu and said, “O Lord! Please make me as good looking as you are, as I have to attend Princess Shrimati’’s swayamvar tomorrow.”
Vishnu blessed the sage with a body as beautiful as his own and the face of a monkey! Narad was unaware of this, and hurried back enthusiastically to Ambarish’s court.
Narad’s Monkey Face
Narad and Parvat were waiting anxiously when Princess Shrimati entered the court with a beautiful flower garland.
When Shrimati came near the sages, she was amused to see the monkey’s face of Narad.
She could not hold back her laughter and started laughing aloud.
Narad felt insulted. Narad instantly realised that he had been tricked. He cursed Vishnu, “Lord, how could you play such a joke with me? I curse you that one day you shall have to seek the help of monkeys to fulfil your tasks.”
Vishnu replied, “Narad, you are a great sage with divine powers. If you marry, your divine powers will vanish. I wanted to save you from losing your powers.”
Narad apologised to Vishnu, but Vishnu said, “Do not worry, Narad! Your curse will be a boon to me. It will give rise to the birth of Hanuman, a monkey-god, who will help kill demon-king Ravan.”
Anajan Gives Birth To Hanuman
Anjana was Hanuman’s mother. There are many stories related to how Anjana gave birth to Hanuman. Anjana, in her previous birth, was an apsara named Punjikasthala.
A sage once cursed Punjikasthala to be born on earth as a female monkey, “You will be freed from the curse only after giving birth to an incarnation of Shiv,” he added.
Punjikasthala was reborn as Anjana on earth and was married to Kesari, the King of monkeys.
One day, Anjana was worshiping Shiv. On the other hand, King Dashrath of Ayodhya was performing a ritual to have children.
Agni gave him a divine rice pudding to be shared among his three wives. However, an eagle grabbed a portion of the pudding and flew away.
Meanwhile, the Wind god blew the wind in the direction where Anjana was worshipping Shiv. The pudding fell into Anjana’s palm and she consumed it.
After some months, Anjana gave birth to Hanuman.
Indra Curses Punjikasthala
Another story related to the birth of Hanuman goes like this. Punjikasthala was a heavenly creature. Once, she visited a planet named Svah (a planet beyond the pole star) as a tourist.
She was very beautiful and Lord Indra fell in love with her. But Punjikasthala declined Indra’s marriage proposal.
She ridiculed him and said, “How can I marry a person who has a thousand eyes? You are not a suitable groom for me.
I deserve someone more handsome!” Indra felt severely insulted, as Punjikasthala had ridiculed him in front of his ministers.
He instantly cursed Anjana, “You will pay dearly for your arrogance! You will be reborn on earth as a monkey named Anjana.”
Punjikasthala’s friend Adrika could not bear what Indra said. She started yelling at Indra and mocked at him in a cat’s voice. Indra became more offended and he cursed Adrika too, “Go and be a cat in your next life!”
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