Hanuman was believed to have been an incarnate of Lord Shiva, one of the three highest gods in Hindu Mythology. As legend has it, Lord Shiva descended on earth as Sri Hanuman to help Prince Rama destroy King Ravana and rid the world of his evil.
In the Ramayana, Sita (Rama’s wife) was abducted by Ravana (the King of Lanka). While Rama and Laxmana were looking for her, they met Hanuman. After ensuring that the princes were who they said they were, Hanuman offered them his help. After consulting with Sugreeva (the King of Monkeys), Hanuman used his supernatural powers and flew above the land in search of Sita.
Hanuman found Sita sitting under the shade of an Ashoka Tree, within the walls of Ravana’s palace. At an opportune moment, Hanuman approached the princess and introduced himself as Rama’s messenger. To prove it, he provided her with her husband’s wedding ring. Convinced, Sita greeted him warmly. Hanuman reassured her and told her that Rama was coming to rescue her soon.
Pleased for having completed his mission, Hanuman turned to leave. But he was spotted by Ravana’s relatives and had to fight the demon Meghnaath, son of Ravana, in the gardens of the palace. He won over Meghnaath but was captured. After being tied up in thick rope, Hanuman was marched to the palace. Ravana was incensed that he couldn’t kill Hanuman without defying the norms of society. So, instead, he wrapped Hanuman’s tail in cloth and set it on fire. By this time, Hanuman had had enough. Out of respect for Rama, he had tried to play by the rules. But no more.
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