Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Hanuman Lists Beauty of Rama In Sundarakanda | 28 Qualities of Lord Rama's Body

Rama's name itself means "One who attracts and pleases the hearts of his viewers" through his beauty.

Hanuman, during his conversation with Sita in the Ashoka Vatika of Lanka, narrates the great qualities and virtues of Rama along with a full description of his entire body to please her and to ascertain her that he (Hanuman) is not a demon in the shape of a monkey.

While doing so, he takes the help of the Samudrika Shastra to enlist all the 28 qualities as prescribed by that astrological science of the body for defining the beauty of Rama.

You can find the entire narration in the 35th sarga of Sundarakanda of the great epic Ramayana that was composed by Valmiki.

This 35th sarga starts with a general introduction of the beauty of Rama (stanza 8 to 16) and, thereafter, lists the qualities according to that body-science (stanza 17 to 20) and, again, carries on further to describe some more enchanting attributes of Lord Rama in stanza 21st. The rest (stanza 22 to 79) is the story of what happened till her abduction and his visit to Lanka.

Hanuman tells Sita that Rama is extremely beautiful with his lotus-like eyes that captivate the hearts of even the animals and the birds. He is supremely handsome, kind, and full of virtuous qualities. His splendor is equal to that of Sun, endurance to Earth, intelligence to Brihaspati, and fame to that of Indra.

Rama is an abode of boundless love and forgiveness. He is the protector of all beings. He is the creator and the creation itself. He is the controller of all universe and, at the same time, a well-disciplined prince himself protecting and caring for his people.

Rama is respected and worshiped by all alike. His character is blemishless. He is an abode of all Vedas and well-versed in all rituals of life. He respects all ascetics and seers. He is loved by all the people of his kingdom.

Hanuman tells that Rama has a large and wide upper-back region with long shoulders. He has a conch-shaped neck, an auspicious face, possesses a sound voice, and a shining body.

28 Norms for Beauty of Body as Mentioned by Samudrika Shastra


Samudrika Shastra (the astrologically specified science of reading a human body) defined some special attributes or norms for evaluating the beauty of a person.

Hanuman describes Rama's beauty taking the help of this samudrika Shastra as narrated in the stanzas 17 to 20 of the sarga 35 of Sundarakanda that is reproduced below.


tristhiraha, tripralambahscha, trisamaha, triSucha unnataha |
tritaamrah, triSucha snighdaha, gambhiirah triSu nityashaha || (17)

trivaliivaan, travyanataha, chaturvyangaha, trishiirSavaan |
chatuSkalaha, chaturlEkhah, chatuS kiSkuh, chatussamaha || (18)

chaturdasha samadvandvaha, chaturdanStrah, chaturgatihi |
mahoSTam hanunaasascha, pancha snighdhah, aSTavanshavaan || (19)

dashapadmah, dashabrihat, tribhirvyaapto, dvishuklavaan |
Sadunnatah, navatanuh, tribhih vyaapnoti Raghavaha || (20)




In the above lines, each quality is separated by a comma.

The first four qualities are that of a king in this long list of the 28 qualities.

  1. Rama is firm in three limbs (chest, wrist, and the fists).
  2. He is long in three (the eye-brows, arms, and soles).
  3. He is equally aligned in three (the hair, testicles, and knees).
  4. Elevated in three (his breast, naval area, and abdomen).
  5. Coppery in three (eye rims, nails, and palms).
  6. Soft in three (foot-lines, hair, and membrum virile).
  7. Deep in three (his voice, gait, and the navel).
  8. Has three folds in his belly.
  9. Has three sunken areas (in the midst of soles, the nipples, and the lines on his soles).
  10. Has compact-sized back, shanks, neck, and virile membrane.
  11. Has three spirals in his head.
  12. He possesses four lines at the root of his thumb (a scholar of four Vedas).
  13. He bears four lines on his forehead, feet, and palms.
  14. He is of eight feet high (4 cubits or 96 inches = 8 feet).
  15. He has four equal pairs (arms, shanks, knees, and cheeks).
  16. He has 14 equally developed parts (eyes, eyebrows, nostrils, ears, lips, nipples, arms, elbows, wrists, loins, hips, knees, testicles, and feet).
  17. He possesses four large, sharp teeth at both ends of his jaws.
  18. His walk is of four gaits (that of a lion, tiger, elephant, and the bull).
  19. He is gifted with splendid lips, cheek, and nose.
  20. He has five smoothy shining parts (hair, eyes, teeth, skin, and soles).
  21. Has eight long limbs (eyes, nose, ears, arms, legs, spinal chord, fingers, toes).
  22. Rama possesses ten lotus-like limbs(the face, eyes, lips, mouth, tongue, cheeks, breasts, nails, hands, and the feet).
  23. He has ten large limbs (the head, forehead, ears, the chest, heart, neck, the belly, the back, the arms, and the feet).
  24. He is spread unlimited by three qualities (the fame, splendor, and honor).
  25. He is pure by two ( by his father's qualities and by his mother's qualities).
  26. Elevated in six (by his forehead, nose, shoulders, the chest, abdomen, and the back).
  27. He is fine and sharp in nine things (the hair, mustache, skin, the hair on the skin, finger joints, nails, virile membrane, perception, and intellect).
  28. He pursues virtuous conduct in all the three time periods of the forenoon, the midday, and the afternoon. 
Rama is a follower of the path of truth and righteousness. He shows affection towards all. He knows how to manage time and circumstances. He welcomes people cordially and rewards them always. He is in abundance of all great qualities.

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