51.gif (13291 bytes)   

Then Sugreeva, Vibbeeshana and Lakshmana deliberated on how to cross the sea. They thought it best to begin with a prayer to the ocean-god and submitted their opinion to Raama. Raama accepted their counsel and, spreading darbha grass on the seashore and laying himself on it, began a fast, addressing his request for a passage across, to the king of the sea. For three days he prayed to the god of the sea but received no response. Then Raama, his eyes glowing with anger at the sea-god's arrogance, turned to Lakshmana and said:

"The low-minded mistake courtesy and gentleness for want of strength. Mildness is simply wasted on them. See now how I shall bring this misproud sea to its senses with my arrows". Then bow in hand and blazing with wrath like the destroying fire at the end of the world he shot arrows irresistible as thunderbolts into the bosom of the sea. These missiles of power disturbed the sea to its depths carrying death and dismay to all it contained and presently the tortured waters began to exhale steam in their agony. 

The sea-god could stand it no longer. Shining like the rising sun behind Mount Meru, he appeared and stood before Raama. With folded hands he said: "My Lord Raamachandra! I am subject to the laws of nature like the earth, the air, space, light, and all constituents of the universe. How can I depart from my nature, which is to be vast, deep, wave-filled, impassable? But this I can do. Please ask the Vaanaras to bring boulders and trees, chant your name (raama naama) and throw them to me to build a causeway. I shall permit it. I shall help you by receiving and keeping in place the rocks and trees. This is all that I can do and I shall also show the most favourable place for this causeway. There is Nala, son of Viswakarma, and others with you, who have the ability to build this path. May victory be yours." 

Raama, true to his nature, graciously accepted the sea god's apology and his offer of help.