Hanuman, the widely popular Hindu God, looks like a monkey. He is revered as the embodiment of resourcefulness, devotion, elocutionary skills, cunning intelligence, and ascetic powers. Hanuman statues honouring the god are found across the length and breadth of India.
The Basic Structure of Hanuman
We often see Hanuman statues, in an attitude of meekness and hushed awe. It is this attitude that overtakes him whenever he finds himself in the presence of Rama, his lord. Often to express this feeling of veneration, the sculptures show his right hand raised in the direction of his nose and mouth as if to ensure that his unworthy breath may not taint the unsullied purity of Him before whom he stands. The upward-pointing gesture also suggests the supremacy of the Other while, in contrast, his left hand is dropped to mark his own lower status in the creaturely order of existence. The tail, as in most delineations of Hanuman which express this attitude of humility, falls differentially behind him.
Artworks very often show the statue of Lord Hanuman in a dhoti, pulled up above his knees to indicate his readiness for an active role upon demand. Overall, he wears a number of decorations-anklets, waistbands, bracelets and biceps ornaments, necklaces, earrings and a crown. Often there is also a pearl necklace at his throat. It was given to him by Sita immediately after Rama's coronation as a token of her appreciation of Hanuman's extraordinary qualities of head and heart. His flowing mane symbolizes his supernatural strength, on the one hand, while the urdhva-pundra mark on his forehead, on the other hand, stands in evidence that his powers are subservient to Vishnu (i.e., Rama in his original form). The upavita-cord which crosses his rugged torso is a trace of the Brahmanical imprint given to his essential, untamed character, which influence has indeed graced him with remarkable endowments in leaning, subtlety, virtuosity, and eloquence [adhiti/bodha/acarana/pracara].
The Standing pose
A variety of other depictions in Hindu Art of the statue of Lord Hanuman in a standing [sthanaka] posture may be noted briefly. Sometimes he is shown with the position of his left hand slightly elevated. Thus, it may be raised palm-upward, either toward the elbow of the hand halting his breath, in order to give it support, or extended outward, in mute request to his Lord for instructions. More often, both hands are raised and joined in Anjali-hasta, a sign of respect; or, in an iconographically equivalent gesture, both arms may be folded with palms tucked respectively under opposite forearms.
A more heroic stance is the not uncommon one which shows him standing with legs braced evenly apart [sampada thanaka], his two hands ripping open his breast to reveal within his heart the presence of Rama, or of Rama and Sita together. In such renditions, Hanuman's face displays an expression of exquisite joy; his tail will be erect and bristling; he may or may not be shown with a gada-club propped by his side.
A very popular portrayal of the Hanuman statue is in a particular form with his legs in a running or jumping position [alidhapada], one or both arms carrying the mountain of healing herbs. His tail will invariably be shown raised in vigorous affirmation of his heroic deed.
Hanuman is also depicted kneeling with one leg bent to the ground-sometimes that will be his left knee, sometimes his right-his hands held either in the Anjali-hasta or outstretched with palms upraised. That latter position is the one regularly used when Hanuman's likeness is fashioned to serve as an oversized vahana-carrier for the Lord's image when it is taken in festive procession around the temple. In that likeness, his tail will be shown elevated, while in the other postures it will be shown touching the ground.
Seated Hanuman statues are found, too. In that posture, he is shown to demonstrate his expertise as a yogin, his many siddhi-powers-about which, more later-only suggested by the powerful contours of his body. Legs crossed, tail in repose, gada-club set aside, hands folded in dhyana mudra, eyes lowered-he presents the perfect picture of the accomplished spiritual master who has utterly subordinated his animal instincts. This statue of Hanuman (which may or may not be reinforced by the presence of a yogapatta-band surrounding his body at the knees) affords an instructive glimpse of an influential facet of his personality.
Occasionally some of the statues of Hanuman are depictions of five-headed Hanuman [panchamukha-hanuman], the four additional heads representing Garuda, Varaha, Asva and Simha-an impressive theriomorphic presence, indeed.
OTHER NAMES OF LORD HANUMAN
The name "Hanuman '' means "one with swollen cheeks," and evidently refers to his simian countenance, although a common story attributes his name to a broken jaw suffered during infancy as the unhappy consequence of a daring and wondrous act. Another popular name by which he is known, "Anjaneya," identifies him as the son of the beautiful nymph, Anjana. Two other well-known names are actually patronymics, both referring to the wind god as his father-"Maruti" and "Vayuputra" (variants: "Pavanaputra," "Pavani ''). Yet another name by which he is known is an epithet for his willingness to attend upon Rama as a servant, "Ramadasa." In north India, he is known as "Bajrang Bali '' (a corruption of Bajrang Bali), meaning "the strong one with an adamantine body".
Domestic Worship of Hanuman
The domestic worship of Hanuman is characterized by devotion 'in-home shrines to his image either in three-dimensional shape or in two- dimensional framed pictures of him. Some worship him in their private puja-rooms as chief, chosen deity [ishta devata], some as one among others [samanya devata], to whom it is their privilege to give daily honours. His portrait is, moreover, stamped on medallions, and these are often given to children as a talisman against evil spirits- though they may also be worn by adults for whatever blessings Hanuman may be pleased to grant.
His presence is petitioned at times when a crisis threatens, and countless children in the South are taught at an early age at least one invocation to Hanuman so that they may use it as a needed-for example when tenor wakes them in the dark from the clutches of a nightmare they will have a memorized litany to recite, or when they have to walk alone through a threatening area there is a formula to mutter. Adults, too, resort to invocations of Hanuman, though in more sophisticated accents. In addition to Japa ("repetition") of his or of Rama's name, it is known that Hanuman will be present whenever the Ramayana ("the story of Rama'') is read, and most surely when that portion of the story describing his exploits is featured.
Hence, adults at home are often observed giving much time to the reading of the "Sundara-kanda" portion of the epic, going over it again and again in the firm conviction that by keeping company thus with Hanuman good fortune will come their way.
Q1. What is the current age of Lord Hanuman?
Lord Hanuman is said to have the blessing of immortality and is said that he would be available to Rama worshippers for as long as Rama's names and stories were mentioned. As a matter of fact, it is widely assumed that Hanuman can be found in places where Rama's glory is sung.
However, it still adheres that Lord Hanuman is still alive and signs of his presence are coming from a mysterious tribe in the Sri Lankan forests. Reportedly, In several regions around Asia, there exist actual evidence of huge footsteps that demonstrate Hanuman's presence on earth. Some of them have been around for hundreds of millions of years.
Considering Ramayana's events that occurred during the Treta Yuga. The Mahabharata occurred during the Dwapar Yuga, which resulted in the influx of the Kali Yuga. The Mahabharata contains legendary stories and anecdotes about Bhima, the second Pandava, and Lord Hanuman's encounter. These stories demonstrate that Hanuman was present throughout the centuries. Nonetheless, It will be difficult to arrive at an exact and correct age number unless an accurate time period is computed.
Q2. Is Lord Hanuman angry?
Lord Hanuman was never the one to start a fight. His wars were all retaliatory in nature. Lord Hanuman was congenital with the goal of uniting religious sects. Although it is said if Lord Hanuman becomes angry, he has the power to destroy whole oceans.
Be that as it may, there is a scene in Ramayana where Hanuman becomes angry..when Meghnath, Ravana's son, used Brahmastra against the Vanara Sena, the sena and warriors like Lakshman died (only a few survived). Rama likewise became unconscious as a result of the brahmastra effect. Hanuman got angry and devastated after mistakenly believing that his idol had succumbed.
His rage caused a catastrophic climatic change, and the world became ferocious. Understanding the significance of preserving the world, Lord Brahma appeared before Hanuman and told him that Mrita Sanjeevani can resuscitate everyone from this agonising wrath and that soothed Lord Hanuman.
Q3. Why did Hanuman not marry?
Lord Hanuman is recognized as a Bal Brahmachari. This is entirely correct, although Lord Hanuman was not unmarried. As he wanted to learn the Nava Vyakarana (the 9 Grammar Rules), but he was not capable of it since he was an Ajanma Brahmachari (lifelong bachelor). In such a scenario, Lord Hanuman, who has chosen to live a life of celibacy, faces a dilemma.
Lord Surya, seeing Hanuman's predicament, advised him to marry Suvarchala, his daughter. Following that, he got married using Vedic rituals and rites to complete his lore. Despite the fact that Lord Hanuman swore to be celibate for the rest of his life, and his wife was Suvarchala Tapaswini returned to penance after their marriage.
Q4. Can Hanuman face west?
Hanging a picture or a portrait of Lord Hanuman in the south direction means facing north of the house is considered auspicious. Placing in the north direction means facing west, which has not been prescribed by Vaastu. According to Vaastu, it is best to keep the picture of Lord Hanuman facing south. He should be shown in the sitting position and red color.
Q5. Which Hanuman photo is good for home entrance?
It is ideal to place a picture of Panchmukhi Hanuman at the entrance of the house. Though he has many extraordinary abilities, Hanuman's true potency comes from his connection to the Divine, his Idol Bhagwan Ram. To some extent, we too can experience such potency if we increase our connection to the Divine through various forms of yoga, meditation, and service.
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