Hanuman vs Valmiki Ramayana

Second Post – Series ‘Reloading Mental Health’ – Feb 2020

Here’s a parable –

When Valmiki completed his Ramayana, Narada was not impressed.

‘It is good, but Hanuman’s is better’, he said.

Valmiki wondered whose Ramayana was better. So he set out to find Hanuman. In Kadali-vana (grove of plantains), he found Ramayana inscribed on seven broad leaves of a banana tree. He read it and found it to be perfect. He couldn’t help himself. He started to cry.

‘Is it so bad?’ asked Hanuman.
‘No, it is so good’, said Valmiki.
‘Then why are you crying?’ asked Hanuman.
‘Because after reading your Ramayana no one will read my Ramayana,’ replied Valmiki.

Hearing this Hanuman simply tore up the seven banana leaves stating ‘Now no one will ever read Hanuman’s Ramayana’ Hanuman added, ‘you need your Ramayana more than I need mine. You wrote your Ramayana so that the world remembers Valmiki; I wrote my Ramayana so that I remember Ram.’

At that moment Valmiki realized how he had been consumed by the desire for validation through his work. He had not used the work to liberate himself from the fear of invalidation. He had not appreciated the essence of Rama’s tale to unknot his mind. His Ramayana was a product of ambition; Hanuman’s Ramayana was a product of affection. That’s why Hanuman’s Ramayana sounded so much better. Valmiki realized that greater than Rama is the idea of Rama.

This story tells us that greater than work is the intent of work. Self-validation emerges the flow of love and passion in everything we do or not do.

Hanuman, who has the ability to selflessly perform duties, symbolizes intense dedication, confidence and morality. There are people, like Hanuman, who don’t want to be famous. They have the strength that is independent on external validation, and they do stuff just to fulfill their purpose. They co-exist in the world of people like Valmiki – the ones who work only to be validated by the world. The Valmikis need not assume that their Ramayana (work) is necessarily the best. There are many unsung Hanumans who enjoy their work and are content with what they do.

Social media presence, phobia, validation and acceptance take a toll on mental as well as emotional health. Desire to lead an unending race, with the intent of becoming famous, is eradicating crucial years off human life. Ayurveda is a counselling based system of medicine. Ayurveda counselling creates awareness about individual’s ‘Mind-Body Constitution’ according to which lifestyle can be changed to optimize physical, mental and emotional health. Self-realization leads to self-validation.

Source: The speaking Tree

Other Posts (Series ‘Reloading Mental Health’) –

June2020  ;  July2020Aug2020  ;  Sept2020  ;  Oct2020  ;  Nov2020 Dec2020  ;

January 2020 ; March 2020April 2020

May 2020


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