“To Sita, who was speaking thus, who was emaciated by grief on account of Rama, and whose eyes were filled with tears, the monkey Hanuman spoke the following words.” (Valmiki Ramayana, Sundara Kand, 37.17)
iti samjalpamānām tām rāma arthe śoka karśitām |
aśru sampūrṇa vadanām uvāca hanumān kapiḥ ||
From the acharyas in the Vedic tradition of bhakti, we learn that the grief suffered by Sita in the Ashoka grove is not ordinary. The outward symptoms may appear to be so. There was lamentation. There was concern over the uncertain future. As a result, there was no eating. The Ramayana says that her body was emaciated by grief. She would not accept any food offered by the Rakshasas in Lanka.
They were man-eaters, after all. The food they prepared was contaminated with their sinful ways, which started from the top. The leaders…
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