Monday, January 02, 2006

chat-up lines of the ancients

"oh, finely limbed lady"

We continue our quest to glean the secret, hidden wisdom of Valmiki's Ramayan. Our findings:

Indra, the thousand-eyed one, is very direct, employing the following opening gambit with Ahalya, already married to a sage:

"Oh, finely limbed lady, indulgers do not watch out for the time to conceive, as such oh, slender-waisted one, I desire copulation with you. [1-48-18]

Effect: Great success. Need I elaborate what follows?

Rama, that model of virtue, that paragon of excellence, sadly seems to have married Sita without exchanging a word, so perhaps the implication here is to speak not with words but actions. But if you seek words, we know he said the following to Shuurpnakha:

"I too wish to know about you. Whose wife are you? What is your name? Or, whose daughter are you? By the way, you are with a most enthralling personality, and then you must be a demoness. [3-17-18]

Effect: Shuurpnakha is besotted. Success.

Shuurpnakha, the she-demon, makes a brazen offer to Rama:

You can lustily ramble about Dandaka forest along with me while enjoying yourself on various mountaintops in the sky and in forests on the earth." So Shuurpanakha said to Rama. [3-17-28]

Effect: Rama is not convinced. Failure.

Shuurpnakha is advised by Rama that his younger brother Lakshmana is single. She tries her luck with him:

"I with my best complexion will be your deserving wife meetly to you charm, you can happily take a jaunt all over Dandaka forest along with me." So Shuurpanakha ran after Lakshmana. [3-18-7]

Effect: Failure. Lakshmana not only declines the offer, he cuts off her nose!

Ravana, Shuurpnakha's brother and King of Lanka, tries to woo Ram's wife Sita by praising her beauty and asking her name:

"Glittering like the glitter of gold, silkened in ochry silks, you are like a lotus-tendril garlanded with divine lotuses as your ensemble, who are you?" Thus Ravanan started addressing Seetha [3-46-16]

Effect: Sita spurns Ravana's affections, and then Rama comes and kills him. Horrible failure.


Overall Conclusion? Be silent, but if you must say something, speak to the point. Being a God will also improve your chances. Truly profound insights can be gained through diligent and determined study of our holy epics.