Hanuman's Journey to the Medicine Mountain

Hanuman's Journey to the Medicine Mountain

5.0 1
by Vatsala Sperling, Sandeep Johari
     
 

Tells the adventures of the magical monkey Hanuman, beloved in India as the devoted helper of Ram, hero of the Hindu epic tale the Ramayana

• Introduces Western children to one of the most playful and beloved characters of Hindu mythology

• Illustrated throughout with full-color paintings in the traditional Indian style

Son of the monkey princess

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Overview

Tells the adventures of the magical monkey Hanuman, beloved in India as the devoted helper of Ram, hero of the Hindu epic tale the Ramayana

• Introduces Western children to one of the most playful and beloved characters of Hindu mythology

• Illustrated throughout with full-color paintings in the traditional Indian style

Son of the monkey princess Anjana and the wind god Pavan, Hanuman is born on Earth to be a helper for Ram, the hero of the Hindu epic the Ramayana. Hanuman is no ordinary monkey. He has the ability to leap higher than the sun and move faster than the wind. When the demon king Ravana kidnaps Ram’s wife, Sita, and carries her off to his island home, the army that goes to rescue her is left discouraged on the beach--stopped by the wide expanse of water between them and the island of Lanka. But magical Hanuman is able to jump over the ocean in one amazing bound. He finds the captive Sita and helps her to take heart and remain strong and confident that Ram will find a way to save her.

And indeed Ram does, but only with the devoted assistance of his mercurial monkey helper. Hanuman shrinks to the size of a fly; grows large enough to uproot a huge tree as though it were a turnip; soars through the sky, setting the city of Lanka on fire with the tip of his tail; and digs up an entire mountain in order to deliver its healing herbs to Ram’s stricken army. This beautifully illustrated retelling of Hanuman’s story makes accessible to Western children and their parents one of the most playful and beloved characters of the Hindu tradition.

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Editorial Reviews

Barbara Ardinger
"Like Vatsala Sperling's previous retellings of traditional Hindu stories, this new book is beautifully illustrated and has a photocopiable illustration for children to color themselves. There is also a useful note to parents and teachers. If your children liked the earlier books, they'll love this one."
Lyda Whiting
"The beautiful illustrations glow with subtle shades and highlights. Created with watercolor and tempera paints using classical Indian painting techniques, the detailed paintings bring the story to life."
From the Publisher
"Like Vatsala Sperling's previous retellings of traditional Hindu stories, this new book is beautifully illustrated and has a photocopiable illustration for children to color themselves. There is also a useful note to parents and teachers. If your children liked the earlier books, they'll love this one."

"The beautiful illustrations glow with subtle shades and highlights. Created with watercolor and tempera paints using classical Indian painting techniques, the detailed paintings bring the story to life."

Children's Literature - Uma Krishnaswami
Hindu mythology with its web of closely interwoven stories is difficult to render in the compact structure of a picture book. This is one of several titles by Vatsala Sperling in which she gives us a flavor of the story-within-a-story structure of the epic from which it is drawn, the Ramayana. In the context of the hero prince Ram's journey to rescue his beloved wife Sita, who has been kidnapped by the demon Ravana, Jambuvan the bear king tells us the story of Hanuman. In the time line of this tale, then, Hanuman is Ram's messenger, bringing hope to the kidnapped princess Sita and striking terror in the demon king's domain. The episode of the mountain that is referred to in the title forms only a small part of the whole, although it is a most interesting and evocative part. In carrying the whole mountain, covered with herbs, to the wounded on the battlefield, Hanuman, whose persona is symbolic of friendship and loyalty, also acquires the mantle of the healer. Illustrations by Sandeep Johari are in the tradition of the late Harish Johari, whose work was an amalgam of old and new, blending traditional imagery with the pulp illustration of comic-book styles that are now undergoing a revival. A consumable "coloring" page is included.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781591430636
Publisher:
Inner Traditions/Bear & Company
Publication date:
11/15/2006
Pages:
32
Sales rank:
722,325
Product dimensions:
8.50(w) x 11.00(h) x 0.40(d)
Age Range:
6 - 9 Years

Read an Excerpt

The Hindu people believe that long, long ago the ancient land of India was the playing field of gods and demons, sages and kings, animals and birds, who performed miraculous feats in a never ending contest between the forces of good and the forces of evil. The rule of eternal law--Sanatan Dharma--was established over and over again each time the forces of good gained the upper hand.

One story about the victory of good over evil is a famous poem from India called the Ramayana. Ram, the hero of this epic, is believed to be Lord Vishnu, God of Preservation, born on Earth in human form. Ram wages war against the evil demon king, Ravana, finally defeating him. In his battle against Ravana Ram receives help from many animals, the most notable being the magical monkey Hanuman.

Born to Pavan, God of the Wind, and Anjana, a celestial nymph, Hanuman has many amazing abilities. He can change shape at will, jump across the ocean, and fly as high as the sun. Because he is devoted to Ram, Hanuman uses his magical skills to help Ram win the war. His story is a tale of courage, wisdom, and cleverness that inspires people to this day.

In modern India, Monkeys are considered sacred beings. Hindus believe that whenever the Ramayana is recited, Hanuman will come to hear Ram's name spoken aloud. They pray to Hanuman when they feel weak or fearful, believing that he will come in invisible form to help them solve their problems, just as once he helped Ram.

Chapter 1
It was a bright afternoon in the Rishyamook Mountains and the warm sun shimmered through the leaves of the jungle canopy. Sugriva, the exiled king of monkeys, and his minister, Hanuman, were doing just what monkeys love to do, basking in the treetops, lazily grooming each other. Suddenly they were interrupted by a distant cry, the sound of a woman's voice, desperately calling, "Help, oh please help me! Ram, help me! Ram!” It seemed as if the voice was coming from the heavens, and indeed, when they looked up, they saw a flash of light, like a streaking meteor. It was a chariot, racing across the clear blue sky. As they watched, a slender arm tossed a small bundle over the side. And then, thump, a pouch came hurtling down through the thick canopy of the forest. Hanuman, who was one of the quickest beings on Earth or in heaven, caught it just as it hit the ground.

When the two monkeys opened the pouch, a handful of beautiful jewelry tumbled out onto the grass. “These must belong to the woman screaming for help,” said Sugriva. They looked up at the sky again. The chariot was a mere speck, disappearing into thick clouds on the far horizon. The desperate voice was gone. The two monkeys looked at each other, their bright mood saddened as they considered the poor woman's plight.

A few days later, a monkey scout reported to king Sugriva that he had seen two young armed men wandering near a lake. “They must be Vali’s men,” said Sugriva with an angry flick of his long tail. "My evil brother must have sent them to spy on me. Is he not satisfied with stealing my wife and banishing me from my own kingdom?” He clenched his fists.

But Hanuman was calmer. “We shouldn't jump to conclusions, O King," said Hanuman. "Let me ask them myself.”

Hanuman, as you will see, had many amazing powers. He could change his form to whatever he liked, and he could even make himself invisible. So, no one saw him as he soared above the treetops. When he reached the two men, he appeared before them as a young mendicant. The men seemed to glow with great inner strength, and Hanuman knew at once they could not be Vali's spies.

"Good sirs, what brings you to these deep and difficult woods? With your grace and strength you look as though you could rule the world. Why are you are dressed like hermits?” he asked, bowing deeply.

“I am Ram. This is my younger brother, Lakshman. King Dasharatha, the late ruler of Ayodhya, is our father. My beloved wife Sita is missing. We are looking everywhere for her,” said Ram. As he spoke, he stared intently at the golden earring that Hanuman wore. Hanuman had worn this earring since birth, but no one had actually ever seen it until now. When he was just a little baby, Lord Brahma had said to him, “This earring will be invisible to all except Lord Vishnu. Born on Earth as Ram, he will be able to see it. Thus, you will recognize each other. All the boons I've given you will help you serve Ram.”

Hanuman recalled those words and smiled. “Lord Ram, I am Hanuman.” He took on his original appearance, that of a monkey, and spoke again, his eyes brimming with joy, “Climb onto my shoulders, and I will take you both to Sugriva.”

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What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
"Like Vatsala Sperling's previous retellings of traditional Hindu stories, this new book is beautifully illustrated and has a photocopiable illustration for children to color themselves. There is also a useful note to parents and teachers. If your children liked the earlier books, they'll love this one."

"The beautiful illustrations glow with subtle shades and highlights. Created with watercolor and tempera paints using classical Indian painting techniques, the detailed paintings bring the story to life."

Meet the Author

Vatsala Sperling, Ph.D., fluent in a number of Indian languages and Sanskrit, learned these traditional stories at her mother’s feet. Before moving to the United States, she was the chief of Clinical Microbiological Services at the largest children’s hospital in India. She is the author of How Ganesh Got His Elephant Head, How Parvati Won the Heart of Shiva, and Ram the Demon Slayer and lives in Vermont with her husband and son. Sandeep Johari was raised by his uncle Harish Johari, who taught him classical Indian painting. He is the creative director in a graphic design studio in New Delhi, India.

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Hanuman's Journey to the Medicine Mountain 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
kmangal More than 1 year ago
great book that tells about the journey of shri hanuman Gi, the servant of Shri Rama Chandram of the rahu dynasty. Vatsala Sperling, Sandeep Johari good job