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Depiction of Hanuman
Chola Dynasty, 11th Century
Affiliation Devotee of Rama, Avatar of Shiva, Vanara
Mantra Hanuman Chalisa
Weapon Gada (Mace)
Mount Himalayas

Hanuman (sa:हनुमान्, IAST:Hanumān; also Anjaneya, Maruti) is a Hindu deity, who is an ardent devotee of Rama, a central character in the Indian epic Ramayana. A general among the vanaras, an ape-like race of forest-dwellers, Hanuman is an incarnation of the divine, whose fate it is to aid the hero Rama in the struggle against the demon king Ravana. His exploits are much celebrated in a variety of religious and cultural traditions,[1] particularly in Hinduism, so much so that he is often the subject of worship according to some bhakti traditions.[2]



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Hanuman was born to Anjana, a female vanara, and Kesari, a male vanara, on Mula Nakshatra, on the full moon day in the month of Chaitra near Trimbakeshwar, Maharashtra. According to the Vedas, his mother Anjana was an apsara who, due to a curse, was born on Bhuloka (Earth) as a female vanara. She would be redeemed from this curse on her giving birth to an incarnation of Lord Shiva, who is also known as Rudra, that is also endowed with the Supreme Power of exalted devotion to Bhagwaan Hari. Hanuman is endowed with 28 transcendental divine opulences, with perfection in each. He is especially so because he is born with the Power of Rudra and with servitorship-devotion (called "Daasya Bava Bhakti" in Sanskrit) to Bhagwaan Hari or Bhagwaan SriVisnu in his incarnation as Bhagwaan Ramacandra, 18th Incarnation of Bhagwaan Hari; appearing in the Ikshavaku dynasty.[citation needed]

The place of birth of Shree Hanuman is Aanjan.[3] Aanjan is a small village about 18 km away from Gumla via Toto. The name of the village has been derived from the name of goddess Anjani, mother of Mahaveer Hanuman. Aanjani Gufa (cave), 4 km from the village, is believed to be the place where Anjani once lived. Many objects of archeological importance obtained from this place has been placed at Patna Museum. It is also debated that Hanuman was born on Anjaneya Hill, in Hampi, Karnataka, near the Risyamukha mountain on the banks of the Pampa, where Sugreeva and Sri Rama met. There is a temple that marks the spot.

Along with Kesari, her husband, Anjana performed intense prayers to Shiva to beget Him as her Child. Pleased with their devotion, Shiva granted them the boon they sought.[4] Hence, Hanuman is also known as "Maharudra" because he was born of the boon given to Anjana by Shiva. The Valmiki Ramayana, (Yuddha Kanda) states that Kesari is the son of Brihaspati and that Kesari also fought on Rama's side in the war against Ravana.

Several different traditions account for Hanuman's birth. One is that at the time that Anjana was worshipping Lord Shiva, elsewhere, Dasharatha, the king of Ayodhya, was performing the Putrakama Yagna in order to have children. As a result, he received some sacred pudding, payasam, to be shared by his three wives, leading to the births of Rama, Lakshmana, Bharata, and Shatrughna. By divine ordinance, a kite snatched a fragment of that pudding and dropped it while flying over the forest where Anjana was engaged in worship. Vayu, the Hindu deity of the wind, delivered the falling pudding to the outstretched hands of Anjana, who consumed it. Hanuman was born to her as a result.[5]

Being Anjana's son, Hanuman is also called Anjaneya (pronounced Aanjanèya), which literally means "arising from Anjani".

Sri Aurobindo states that "vanara" does not refer to "monkey": "Prajapati manifests as Vishnu Upendra incarnate in the animal or Pashu in whom the four Manus have already manifested themselves, and the first human creature who appears is, in this Kalpa, the Vanara, not the animal Ape, but man with the Ape nature"[citation needed], i.e. primitive man such as Homo erectus

Hanuman, in one interpretation, is also considered as the incarnation of Shiva or reflection of Shiva. Others, such as followers of Dvaita consider Hanuman to be the son of Vayu or a manifestation of Vayu, the god of wind. When Ravana tried to enter the Kailash (the abode of Shiva) called Nandishwara "a monkey". Nandishwara in return cursed Ravana that a monkey would burn his Lanka.

References to Hanuman in classical literature could be found as early as those of 5th to 1st century BC in Panini's Astadhyayi, Abhiseka Nataka, Pratima Nataka, and Raghuvamsa (Kālidāsa).

Childhood, education, and curse

As a child, assuming the sun to be a ripe mango, he once took flight to catch hold of it to eat. Rahu, a Vedic planet corresponding to an eclipse, was at that time seeking out the sun as well, and he clashed with Hanuman. In the nature of Rahu, the Tamas Guṇa predominated. To convey a message to the universe that Satva Guṇa always prevails, Hanuman goes to take sun in his abode.[6] Indra, king of devas was approached by Rahu with disappointment, enraging Indra, who responded by throwing the Vajra (thunderbolt) at Hanuman, which struck his jaw. He fell back down to the earth and became unconscious. Upset, Vayu went into seclusion, taking the atmosphere with him. As living beings began to be asphyxiated, Indra withdrew the effect of his thunderbolt, and the devas revived Hanuman and blessed him with multiple boons.[7] A permanent mark was left on his chin (hanuhH in Sanskrit), explaining his name.

On ascertaining Surya, the Hindu deity of the sun, to be an all-knowing teacher, Hanuman raised his body into an orbit around the sun and requested that Surya accept him as a student. Surya refused, claiming that as he always had to be on the move in his chariot, it would be impossible for Hanuman to learn effectively. Undeterred by Surya's refusal, Hanuman enlarged his body, placed one leg on the eastern ranges and the other on the western ranges, and with his face turned toward the sun made his request again. Pleased by his persistence, Surya accepted. Hanuman then moved (backwards, to remain facing Surya) continuously with his teacher, and learned all of the latter's knowledge. When Hanuman then requested Surya to quote his "guru-dakshina" (teacher's fee), the latter refused, saying that the pleasure of teaching one as dedicated as him was the fee in itself. Hanuman insisted, whereupon Surya asked him to help his (Surya's) spiritual son Sugriva.[8] Hanuman's choice of Surya as his teacher is said to signify Surya as a Karma Saakshi, an eternal witness of all deeds. Hanuman was mischievous in his childhood, and sometimes teased the meditating sages in the forests by snatching their personal belongings and by disturbing their well-arranged articles of worship. Finding his antics unbearable, but realizing that Hanuman was but a child, (albeit invincible), the sages placed a mild curse on him by which he became unable to remember his own ability unless reminded by another person. It is hypothesised that without this curse, the entire course of the Ramayana war might have been different, for he demonstrated phenomenal abilities during the war. The curse is highlighted in Kishkindha Kanda and Sundara Kanda when Jambavantha reminds (the quietly wondering) Hanuman of his abilities and encourages him to go and find Sita. The specific verse that is recited by Jambavantha is :

पवन तनय ब्ल पवन समाना बुद्धि विवेक विज्ञान निधाना | कवन् सो काज कठिन जग माही जो नहि होय तात तुम्ह पाहीं ||

Rough translation:

You are as powerful as the wind (Hanumanji was the son of Pawan, God of wind);

You are intelligent, illustrious & an inventor.

There is nothing in this world that’s too difficult for you;

Whenever stuck, you are the one who can help.

Ramayana war

A 17th century painting depicting Hanuman worshiping Lord Rama and his wife Sita. Lakshmana is also seen in this painting from Smithsonian Institution collection.

The Sundara Kanda, the fifth book in the Ramayana, focuses on the adventures of Hanuman.


Meeting Rama

Hanuman meets Rama during the latter's 14-year exile in the forest.[9] With his brother Lakshmana, Rama is searching for his wife Sita who had been abducted by Ravana. Their search brings them to the vicinity of the mountain Rishyamukha, where Sugriva, along with his followers and friends, are in hiding from his older brother Vali, with whom he had quarrelled over a mistake.

Having seen Rama and Lakshmana, Sugriva sends Hanuman to ascertain their identities. Hanuman approaches the two brothers in the guise of a brahmin. His first words to them are such that Rama says to Lakshmana that none could speak the way the brahmin did unless he or she had mastered the Vedas. He notes that there is no defect in the brahmin's countenance, eyes, forehead, brows, or any limb. He points out to Lakshmana that his accent is captivating, adding that even an enemy with sword drawn would be moved. He praises the disguised Hanuman further, saying that sure success awaited the king whose emissaries were as accomplished as he was.[9]

When Rama introduces himself, Hanuman reveals his own identity and falls prostrate before Rama, who embraces him warmly. Thereafter, Hanuman's life becomes interwoven with that of Rama. Hanuman then brings about a friendship and alliance between Rama and Sugriva; Rama helps Sugriva regain his honour and makes him king of Kishkindha. Sugriva and his vanaras, most notably Hanuman, help Rama defeat Ravana and reunite with Sita.

In their search for Sita, a group of Vanaras reaches the southern seashore. Upon encountering the vast ocean, every vanara begins to lament his inability to jump across the water. Hanuman too is saddened at the possible failure of his mission, until the other vanaras and the wise bear Jambavantha begin to extol his virtues. Hanuman then recollects his own powers, enlarges his body, and flies across the ocean. On his way, he encounters a mountain that rises from the sea, proclaims that it owed his father a debt, and asks him to rest a while before proceeding. Not wanting to waste any time, Hanuman thanks the mountain and carries on. He then encounters a sea-monster, Surasa, who challenges him to enter her mouth. When Hanuman outwits her, she admits that her challenge was merely a test of his courage. After killing Simhika, a rakshasa, he reaches Lanka.

Locating Sita

Hanuman reaches Lanka and marvels at its beauty. After he finds Sita in captivity in a garden, Hanuman reveals his identity to her, reassures her that Rama has been looking for her, and uplifts her spirits. He offers to carry her back to Rama, but she refuses his offer, saying it would be an insult to Rama as his honour is at stake. After meeting Sita, Hanuman begins to wreak havoc, gradually destroying the palaces and properties of Lanka. He kills many rakshasas, including Jambumalli and Akshaa. To subdue him, Ravana's son Indrajit uses the Brahmastra. Though immune to the effects of this weapon Hanuman, out of respect to Brahma, allows himself be bound. Deciding to use the opportunity to meet Ravana, and to assess the strength of Ravana's hordes, Hanuman allows the rakshasa warriors to parade him through the streets. He conveys Rama's message of warning and demands the safe return of Sita. He also informs Ravana that Rama would be willing to forgive him if he returns Sita honourably.

Enraged, Ravana orders Hanuman's execution, whereupon Ravana's brother Vibheeshana intervenes, pointing out that it is against the rules of engagement to kill a messenger. Ravana then orders that Hanuman's tail be lit afire. As Ravana's forces attempted to wrap cloth around his tail, Hanuman begins to lengthen it. After frustrating them for a while, he allows it to burn, then escapes from his captors, and with his tail on fire he burns down large parts of Lanka. After extinguishing his flaming tail in the sea, he returns to Rama.[citation needed]

Lifting a mountain

Sculpture of Hanuman carrying the Dronagiri mountain, worshipped in a Haridwar temple

When Lakshmana is severely wounded by Indrajit during the war against Ravana, Hanuman is sent to fetch the Sanjivani, a powerful life-restoring herb from the Dronagiri mountain in the Himalayas, to revive him. Ravana realises that if Lakshmana dies, a distraught Rama would probably give up, and so has his uncle Kalnaimi tempt Hanuman away with luxury. Hanuman is tipped off by a crocodile (actually a celestial being under a curse) and kills Kalnaimi. When he is unable to find the specific herb before nightfall, Hanuman takes the entire Dronagiri mountain to the battlefield in Lanka, thus helping others find the herb to revive Lakshmana. An emotional Rama hugs Hanuman, declaring him as dear to him as his own beloved brother Bharat.

The god Hanuman was also called "langra veer", means a winning the hills . He was injured when he was crossing the Ayodhya with the big Dronagiri mountain on his hands. As he was crossing over Ayodhya , Bharat, Rama's young brother saw him and assumed that some rakshas is taking this mountain to hurt his brother Rama. So he attacked him with his arrow on his legs and Hanuman was injured. Hanuman landed and told Bharat that he is Hanuman and taking sanjeevni to save Bharat's brother Lakshman. Bharat was very sorry for his act but Hanuman continued his journey with injured leg.

Patala incident

In another incident during the war (which brought about Hanuman's Panchamukha form), Rama and Lakshmana are captured by the rakshas Mahiravana and his brother Ahiravana, who hold them captive in their palace in Patalpuri or Patala (the netherworld). Mahiravana keeps them as offerings to his deity. Searching for them, Hanuman reaches Patala whose gates are guarded by a young creature called Makardhwaja (known also as Makar-Dhwaja or Magar Dhwaja), who is part reptile and part Vanara.

The story of Makardhwaja's birth is said to be that when Hanuman had extinguished his burning tail in the ocean, a drop of his sweat had fallen into the waters and eventually become Makardhwaja, who perceives Hanuman as his father. When Hanuman introduces himself to Makardhwaja, the latter asks his blessings, but fights him to fulfill the task of guarding the gate. Hanuman defeats and imprisons him to gain entry.

Upon entering Patala, Hanuman discovers that to kill Mahiravana, he must simultaneously extinguish five lamps burning in different directions. Hanuman assumes the Panchamukha or five-faced form of Sri Varaha facing north, Sri Narasimha facing south, Sri Garuda facing west, Sri Hayagriva facing the sky and his own facing the east, and blows out the lamps. Hanuman then rescues Rama and Lakshmana. Afterwards, Rama asks Hanuman to crown Makardhwaja king of Patalpuri. Hanuman then instructs Makardhwaja to rule Patalpuri with justice and wisdom.

Bharata's vow

When the war ends, Rama's 14-year exile has almost elapsed. Rama then remembers Bharata's vow to immolate himself if Rama does not return to rule Ayodhya immediately, on completion of the stipulated period. Realising that it would be a little later than the last day of the 14 years when he would reach Ayodhya, Rama is anxious to prevent Bharata from giving up his life. Hanuman therefore flies to Ayodhya to inform Bharata that Rama is on his way home.


Shortly after he is crowned Emperor upon his return to Ayodhya, Rama decides to ceremoniously reward all his well-wishers. At a grand ceremony in his court, all his friends and allies take turns being honoured at the throne. Hanuman approaches without desiring a reward. Seeing Hanuman come up to him, an emotionally overwhelmed Rama embraces him warmly, declaring that he could never adequately honour or repay Hanuman for the help and services he received from the noble Vanara. Sita, however, insists that Hanuman deserved honour more than anyone else, and asks him to seek a gift. Upon Hanuman's request, Sita gives him a necklace of precious stones adorning her neck. When he receives it, Hanuman immediately takes it apart, and peers into each stone. Taken aback, many of those present demand to know why he is destroying the precious gift. Hanuman answers that he was looking into the stones to make sure that Rama and Sita are in them, because if they are not, the necklace is of no value to him. At this, a few mock Hanuman, saying his reverence and love for Rama and Sita could not possibly be as deep as he implies. In response, Hanuman tears his chest open, and everyone is stunned to see Rama and Sita literally in his heart.

Sree Hanuman in Ramalayam temple located in Andhra Pradesh in Gundugolanu village

Hanuman Ramayana

A Hanuman painting from Bali (1880)

After the victory of Rama over Ravana, Hanuman went to the Himalayas to continue his worship of the Lord. There he scripted a version of the Ramayana on the Himalayan mountains using his nails, recording every detail of Rama's deeds. When Maharishi Valmiki visited him to show him his own version of the Ramayana, he saw Hanuman's version and became very disappointed.

When Hanuman asked Valmiki the cause of his sorrow, the sage said that his version, which he had created very laboriously, was no match for the splendour of Hanuman's, and would therefore go ignored. At this, Hanuman discarded his own version, which is called the Hanumad Ramayana. Maharishi Valmiki was so taken aback that he said he would take another birth to sing the glory of Hanuman which he had understated in his version.

Later, one tablet is said to have floated ashore during the period of Mahakavi Kalidasa, and hung at a public place to be deciphered by scholars. Kalidasa is said to have deciphered it and recognised that it was from the Hanumad Ramayana recorded by Hanuman in an extinct script, and considered himself very fortunate to see at least one pada of the stanza.

After the Ramayana war

After the war, and after reigning for several years, the time arrived for Rama to depart to his heavenly abode. Many of Rama's entourage, including Sugriva, decided to depart with him. Hanuman, however, requested to remain on earth as long as Rama's name was venerated by people. Sita accorded Hanuman that desire, and granted that his image would be installed at various public places, so he could listen to people chanting Rama's name. He is one of the immortals of Hinduism.[10]

In the Mahabharata

Hanuman is also considered to be the brother of Bhima on grounds that both have the same father, Vayu. During the Pandavas' exile, he appears disguised as a weak and aged monkey to Bhima in order to subdue his arrogance. Bhima enters a field where Hanuman is lying with his tail blocking the way. Bhima, unaware of his identity, tells him to remove it. In return, Hanuman tells him to remove it himself. Bhima tries this, but is unable to do it despite his great strength and therefore inquires into Hanuman's identity, which is then revealed. Upon Bhima's request, Hanuman is also said to have enlarged himself and shown him the same size in which he had crossed the sea to go to Lanka, looking for Sita.

Hanuman Chatti where Bhima met Hanuman, near Badrikashram

More significantly, during the great battle of Kurukshetra, Arjuna entered the battlefield with a flag displaying Hanuman on his chariot.[10] The incident that led to this was an earlier encounter between Hanuman and Arjuna, wherein Hanuman appeared as a small talking monkey before Arjuna at Rameshwaram, where Rama had built the great bridge to cross over to Lanka to rescue Sita. Upon Arjuna's wondering aloud at Rama's taking the help of monkeys rather than building a bridge of arrows, Hanuman challenged him to build such a bridge capable of bearing him alone, and Arjuna, unaware of the monkey's true identity, accepted. Hanuman then proceeded to repeatedly destroy the bridges made by Arjuna, who decided to take his own life. Vishnu then appeared before them both, chiding Arjuna for his vanity and Hanuman for making Arjuna feel incompetent. As an act of penitence, Hanuman decided to help Arjuna by stabilizing and strengthening his chariot during the imminent great battle. Legend goes that Hanuman is one of the three people to have heard the Bhagwad Gita from Krishna, the other two being Arjuna and Sanjaya.

Prophets, power and presence in the present age

Hanuman as depicted in Yakshagana, popular folk art of Karnataka

There have been numerous prophets who claimed to have seen Hanuman in modern times, notably Madhvacharya (13 Century A.D.), Tulsidas (16th century), Sri Ramdas Swami (17th century)and Raghavendra Swami (17th century), Swami Ramdas (20th century) and Sri Sathya Sai Baba (20th century).

Swaminarayan, founder of the Hindu Swaminarayan sects (including BAPS), holds that other than worship of God through the Narayana Kavacha, Hanuman is the only lower deity who may be worshiped in the event of trouble by evil spirits. [11]

Others have also asserted his presence wherever the Ramayana is read.[12]

यत्र यत्र रघुनाथ कीर्तनम् तत्र तत्र क्रित मस्तक अन्जलिं बष्पावरी परीपूर्ण लोचनम् मारुतिं नमश्च राक्षस अंतकम्।

That wherever the deeds of Sri Rama are sung,
At all such places does Hanuman cry tears of devotion and joy,
At all such places does his presence remove the fear of demons.

This can be found in other texts such as the Vinaya Patrika by Tulsidas and the Mahabharta, and in other texts with only slight variation in language. Even where Ramayanpath is taking place, there is a special puja and space (asan) reserved for Hanuman.

Temples and worship

A Hanuman langur sitting next to a Hanuman statue, near Arbuda Devi Temple, Mount Abu, Rajasthan
A temple to Hanuman near Nuwara Eliya[2] in Sri Lanka
The largest Hanuman Murti outside of India, located in Trinidad and Tobago
Temple of Hanuman at Nerul Navi Mumbai

Hanuman is worshipped by villagers as a protective boundary guardian, by Shaiva ascetics as a Yogi and by wrestlers for his strength.[13] There are numerous temples for Hanuman, and his images are usually installed at all temples where images of avatars of Vishnu are installed. Hanuman temples are believed to keep the area and surroundings free of rakshasas and 'evils'. This was a presentational 'Varam' to him by Rama and Sita. Hanuman idols are found on mountain roads because it is believed that he protects people from accidents.

Jakhu temple is a famous temple of Lord Hanuman at Shimla, the capital of Himachal Pradesh. The word “Jakhuo” is derived from Yaku after Yaksha. The hill is the legendary abode of Yaksha, Kinners Nagas and Asuras. Legend has it that the sudden landing of Hanuman flattened the hill; a temple dedicated to Lord Hanuman is now located there.

According to mythology, during the battle between lord Rama and Ravana at Lanka, Lakshmana the younger brother of lord Rama was injured from an arrow from Meghnad and turned senseless. In order to save his life, when lord Hanuman was moving towards Himalaya to get sanjeewani herb, all of a sudden he saw Yaaku sage on Jakhu mountain in penance. This place was named Jakhu, after the same sage .In order to gather more details about sanjeewani, lord Hanuman landed here. As a result of which Jakhu mountain which earlier was much higher ,half sunk into earth. After getting all the clarifications about the herb, lord Hanuman started his journey towards mount Dron. However, his friends accompanying him felt asleep here due to long distant tiring journey. When they woke up, all of them were sad on not finding lord Hanuman with them. All of them decided to stay here. Their successors can be seen roaming in this area even today. Lord Hanuman had even promised the sage Yaaku to meet him during his back journey. However due to shortage of time as a result of wickedness of Kaalnemi, he had to return back to Lanka via shorter route. The waiting sage got very sad .At the same time lord Hanuman appeared before the sage and told him the reason for not keeping his promise. When lord Hanuman disappeared, an idol of lord Hanuman appeared by itself and is present in the temple till date. This temple of lord Hanuman was constructed by the Yaaku sage in remembrance of lord Hanuman.

The oldest known independent Hanuman statue is the one at Khajuraho, which has an inscription dated Sam. 940 (AD 883)mentioning that it was erected by Gahil's son Gollak.[14][15]

Sankat Mochan Shri Hanuman Mandir, located in the Punjab town of Phillaur is one of the popular temples of Hanuman.

Namakkal Anjaneyar temple is located in the town of Namakkal, Tamilnadu. There is an 18-feet idol of Sri Hanuman in the temple facing east, worshipping Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Swami (one of the avatar of god Vishnu) in this temple. Anjenayar idol is Swayambu,keep growing in height thus,temple has no roof enclosing.

Sholinghur Sri Yoga Narasimha swami temple and Sri Yoga Anjaneyar temple,located in sholinghur a town which is about 30 km from Arakkonam of Vellore District.Sri yoga Anjaneyar temple located over small hill(chinna malai=small hill)containing 480 steps from ground.Lord Anjaneyar with Sathurpujam(sathur=four,pujam=arms)sri sangu and sri chakaram 2 hands and jabba malai and jaba shankaram in other two respectively facing Sri yoga Narasimha swami and Yoga Amurthavalli Thayar present over hill(periya malai= big hill)with 1305 steps from ground.Sholinghur shetram one among 108 divya desams also one of most famous temple of our Lord Anjaneya.

Ragigudda Anjaneya temple is a Hanuman temple located in JP Nagar Bangalore. The temple is located on a hillock.

The Hanuman temple at Nerul, Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra, India is situated inside SIES complex. The Hanuman idol is 33 feet (10 m) tall and is installed on a pedestal of height 12 feet (4 m), bringing the total height to 45 feet (14 m). In the picture shown, Hanuman has silver coverings (Silver Kavasam).

Similarly, a 32 feet (10 m) idol of Sri Anjaneyar was entrenched in 1989 at Nanganallur in chennai, India. The distinguishing factor of the idol is that it was molded out of a single rock.

Other large Lord Hanuman idols: A 72 feet statue of Lord hanuman is present in hanuman Vatika(temple complex) in Raurkela, Orissa, India.

A 30 foot Murti of Anjaneyaswamy, in Ponnur near Guntur in Andhra Pradesh.

An 85-foot (26 m) Karya Siddhi Hanuman murthi was installed at Carapichaima-Trinidad and Tobago, by Avadhoota Dattapeetham Pontiff Sri Ganapathi Sachchidananda. It is the tallest in the Western hemisphere and second tallest in the world.

The tallest Hanuman statue is 135 feet at Paritala 240 KM from Hyderabad in Andhra Pradesh, installed in 2003.[16]

The image of Hanuman is said to have come alive and moved when installed at the Shri Hanuman Mandir, Sarangpur‎. The temple is noted for getting rid of evil spirits.[17]

Suchindram temple is a pious place lying about 14 kms from Kanyakumari, TamilNadu.The temple is famous for it 18 feet tall

Kaviyur is a small village about 5-6 km from the town of Thiruvalla, Kerala The Shiva temple here is about 100 years old and The Hanuman temple inside the Shiva temple is considered as very auspicious by devotees. Hanuman idol consecrated here is made of Panchaloha and is depicting him telling the story of Ramayana to Sita in the Asoka Vana

There is a famous temple dedicated to Hanuman, at the entrance to Bekal Fort.

Panchamukha Hanuman

Sri Panchamukha Anjaneya Swami was the main deity of Sri Raghavendra Swami. The place where he meditated on this five-faced form of Hanuman is now known as Panchamukhi, wherein a temple for him has been built. There is also a shrine for Panchamukha Anjaneya Swami at Kumbakonam in Tamil Nadu, India. A 40 feet (12 m) tall monolithic green granite murti of Sri Panchamukha Hanuman has been installed in Thiruvallur, also in Tamil Nadu. This place was known as Rudravanam in olden times when many saints and seers had blessed this place with their presence. The Panchamukha Hanuman Ashram itself was established by a saint called Venkatesa Battar.

Hanuman assumed this form to kill Mahiravana, a powerful rakshasa black-magician and practitioner of the dark arts during the Ramayana war. Mahiravana had taken Lord Rama and Lakshmana captive, and the only way to kill him was to extinguish five lamps burning in different directions, all at the same instant. Hanuman assumed His Panchamukha form and accomplished the task, thus killing the rakshasa, and freeing Rama and Lakshmana.

This form of Hanuman is very popular, and is also known as Panchamukha Anjaneya and Panchamukhi Anjaneya. (Anjaneya, which means "son of Anjana", is another name of Hanuman). One of the most famous places of Pligrimage in central India is claimed to be the Resting Place of Shiri Hanuman Ji is Chitrakoot. The Hanuman Dhara Temple is situated on the peak of mountain where there is natural rock formation image of Shri Hanuman inside the cave and a natural stream of water falling on the tail. It is believed that after the coronation of Lord Ram, Hanuman requested for a permanent place to settle in the Kingdom of Lord Ram, where his Injury of burns on his tails will be cured. Lord ram then with his arrow spurred a stream of water on the tip of mountain and asked hanuman to rest there and water of the stream will fall on his tail to cool down burning sensation on his tail.

The access to the cave temple is through stairs starting from bottom of the mountain to its top. It takes roughly 30 to 40 minutes to reach the temple. Over time the temple has gained a new name, namely Hanuman Dhara.

Relation with Shani (Saturn)

In the Hindu faith, Hanuman is not afflicted by Shani.

In the Ramayana, Hanuman is said to have rescued Shani,that is, the planet Saturn, from the clutches of Ravana.[18] In gratitude, Shani promised Hanuman that those who prayed to him (Hanuman) would be rescued from the painful effects of Saturn, which in Hindu astrology, is said to produce malefic effects on one's life when one is afflicted "negatively" with Saturn.[19]

Another version of the encounter between Lord Hanuman and Shani Bhagavan is that the latter once climbed on to Lord Hanuman's shoulder, implying that he (Hanuman) was coming under the effects of the influence of Shani. At this, Hanuman assumed a large size, and Shani was caught painfully between Hanuman's shoulders and the ceiling of the room they were in. As the pain was unbearable, Shani requested Hanuman to release him, promising that if a person prayed to Hanuman, he (Shani) would moderate the malefic effects of his influence on that person; following this, Hanuman released Shani.

One more version of the story behind why Lord Shani stays away from those who remember the Lord Ram's name. Once Lord Hanuman was sitting silently absorbed in deep meditation of Lord Rama. Lord Shani passed by and he felt to tease Hanuman. He started teasing Hanuman by pulling his tail, and pinching. Hanuman warned him to go away as he is his Guru's (Lord Sun) son, and so he respects him. When Shani did not hear, then Hanuman started to give him a good thrashing. In the end, Shani pleaded to leave him and Hanuman took a promise from him that Shani will never ever go near a devotee who is meditating on Lord Rama.

There is a spiritual interpretation of the relation between Lord Hanuman and Lord Shani. The former is said to be a symbol of selflessness, while the latter is symbolic of instant Judgement based on past and present karma. Thus, to counter the karma borne out of selfish action, one must be humble like Lord Hanuman. This is particularly true for those who are said to be experiencing the evil effects of "Sade Sati" - a period of about seven and half years when Saturn (Lord Shani) is supposed to afflict the sign in which "planet," the moon is placed in the natal chart of a person.

There is also a belief that all the planets are under the control of Hanuman's tail. Whoever worships Hanuman is granted fortitude and strength. He is considered to be the lord of Mars. Mars is considered to be the Senapati (General) of the army of God. In human body, Mars is symbolized in the form of blood.

See also


  1. ^ Orlando O. Espín, James B. Nickoloff An introductory dictionary of theology and religious studies. 2007, page 537
  2. ^ Rosen, Steven. Essential Hinduism. 2006, page 67-8
  3. ^ http://gumla.nic.in/ANJAN_MAIN.html
  4. ^ Sri Ramakrishna Math (1985) "Hanuman Chalisa" p. 5
  5. ^ Sri Ramakrishna Math (1985) "Hanuman Chalisa" pp. 5-6
  6. ^ Sri Ramakrishna Math (1985) "Hanuman Chalisa" p. 6
  7. ^ Sri Ramakrishna Math (1985) "Hanuman Chalisa" p. 7
  8. ^ Sri Ramakrishna Math (1985) "Hanuman Chalisa" p. 7
  9. ^ a b Sri Ramakrishna Math (1985) "Hanuman Chalisa" p. 8
  10. ^ a b Sri Ramakrishna Math (1985) "Hanuman Chalisa" p. 9
  11. ^ According to this site, http://www.kakaji.org/shikshapatri_verses.asp?catid=viewAll], verses 85, of their scripture, Shikshapatri, [1] states, "And if disturbance from ghostly spirits is ever experienced, chant the Narayankavach or Hanuman's mantra, but one should not chant the stotra or mantra of any low deity."
  12. ^ Hanuman, Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia
  13. ^ Claus (2003)
  14. ^ Reports of a Tour in Bundelkhand and Rewa in 1883-84, and of a Tour in Rewa, Bundelkhand, Malwa, and Gwalior, in 1884-85, Alexander Cunningham, 1885
  15. ^ Hanuman's tale: the messages of a divine monkey, Philip Lutgendorf, Oxford University Press US, 2007
  16. ^ Hanuman's tale: the messages of a divine monkey, Philip Lutgendorf, 2007
  17. ^ Raymond Brady Williams (2001). An introduction to Swaminarayan Hinduism. Cambridge University Press. http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=tPkexi2EhAIC&pg=PA128&dq=hanuman+sarangpur&client=firefox-a#PPA128,M1. Retrieved May 14, 2009.  Page 128
  18. ^ Lutgendorf, Philip (2007). Hanuman's tale: the messages of a divine monkey. Oxford University Press US. p. 141. http://books.google.co.in/books?id=fVFC2Nx-LP8C&pg=PT333&dq=avatara+Hanuman&lr=&client=firefox-a&cd=1#v=snippet&q=avatara%20%20Shiva&f=false. 
  19. ^ Lutgendorf, Philip (2007). Hanuman's tale: the messages of a divine monkey. Oxford University Press US. p. 141. http://books.google.co.in/books?id=fVFC2Nx-LP8C&pg=PT333&dq=avatara+Hanuman&lr=&client=firefox-a&cd=1#v=snippet&q=avatara%20%20Shiva&f=false. 


External links

1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

HANUMAN, in Hindu mythology, a monkey-god, who forms a central figure in the Ramayana. He was the child of a nymph by the god of the wind. His exploits, as the ally of Rama (incarnation of Vishnu) in the latter's recovery of his wife Sita from the clutches of the demon Ravana, include the bridging of the straits between India and Ceylon with huge boulders carried away from the Himalayas. He is the leader of a host of monkeys who aid in these supernatural deeds. Temples in his honour are frequent throughout India.

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Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary



Proper noun




  1. A Hindu demi-god who was a devotee of Lord Rama. He was born to Anjana and Vayu. He also plays a role of a god’s servant in Ramayana. He is also known as the monkey god. He is a synonym for loyalty to the Lord and Master.


These are only a few common synonyms.

  • Anjaneya
  • Anjani Putra
  • Bajarangbali
  • Balbrahamchari
  • Mahaveer
  • Marutinandan
  • Pavanputra
  • Vayu Putra


See also

Simple English

Hanuman is one of the most popular gods of Hindus. He is also known by other names like Hanumat. His mother’s name was Anjana. Based on her mother’s name, Hanuman is sometimes called as Anjaneya, that is, one born of Anjana. His father’s name was Vayu. According to Hindu mythology, Vayu is the god of winds. Hanuma’s image shows him as a strong man with the face of a monkey. He also has a tail. Hanuman was awarded boon of Immortality by Mother Sita ( Wife of Lord rama) and is still alive

Hanuman is a very powerful and strong god. He finds an important place in the Ramayana. He was a devotee of Rama, a form (avatar) of Vishnu, a god of Hindus.

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