DEVOTION

NO BEGGAR, I, FOR COMMON FRUIT

JUST imagine Hanuman's state of mind. He didn't care for money, honour, creature comforts, or anything else. He longed only for God. When he was running away with the heavenly weapon that had been secreted in the crystal pillar, Mandodari began to tempt him with various fruits so that he might come down and drop the weapon24. But he couldn't be tricked so easily. In reply to her persuasions he sang this song;

Am I in need of fruit?
I have the fruit that makes this life
Fruitful indeed
Within my heart
The tree of Rama grows,
Bearing salvation for its fruits
Under the wish-fulfilling Tree Of Rama do I sit at ease
Plucking whatever fruit I will
But if you speak of fruitó
No beggar, I, for common, fruit. Behold, I go
Leaving a bitter fruit for you. (91)

24 The story referred to here is told in the Ramayana. Ravana had received a boon us a result of which he could be killed only by a particular celestial weapon. The weapon was concealed in a crystal pillar in his palace. One day Hanuman, in the guise of an ordinary monkey, came to the palace and broke the pillar. As he was running away with the weapon, he was tempted with fruits by Mandodari, Ravana's wife, so that he might give back the weapon. He soon assumed his own form and sang the song given in the text.