Hanuman is world's original superhero

Hanuman is world’s original superhero

Long before Superman or Batman, there was Hanuman. The original superhero. But he wasn’t just all brawn. He was a consummate all-rounder. He was intelligent, patient, compassionate, ready to help, graceful, devoted to a larger cause, humble, and of course immensely strong. Born in a family of monkeys, to King Kesari and his wife Anjana, Hanuman grew up to be multi-skilled. His pivotal role in the Ramayana is known to many. He is revered not only in India but pretty much the whole of Southeast Asia, albeit in different forms and with varying legends. I daresay he has a greater fan following than most other superheroes.

When Rama and Lakshmana are kidnapped by Mahiravana (Ravana’s brother) and taken to Patala (netherworld), Hanuman goes to rescue them. It is there he finds out that he must at once extinguish five lamps in five directions – North, South, East, West, and Upwards – if he has to vanquish the evil brother of Ravana. At that point, he assumes a five-faced form. Here are five lessons we can learn from the five-faced superhero.


1. Aim for the Sun

Even as a young boy, Hanuman leaps into the sky thinking that the Sun is a large mango. As he gets closer and closer to the Sun, he increases his size. Then he gets shot down by Indra. Hanuman’s spiritual father, Vayu, the wind god, gets upset at his son’s fall and empties the universe of wind. As all creatures are on the verge of death, Hanuman is revived and granted eternal life.

A great lesson in this is that if we aim for the sun, we may not get it, but we won’t come up with something petty. Also, we might get shot down in attempting the impossible but the universe will work to ensure that things are set right.

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