Too good to resist – The Golden deer of Kambaramayanam


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I choose just a single stanza of Kamban’s Ramavatharam today unlike my old posts where I end up posting 2 to 3 posts on single topic. I found this single stanza really interesting. Lets see whats stanza I am talking about first,

கலைமான் முதல் ஆயின கண்ட எலாம்,
அலை மானுறும் ஆசையின், வந்தனவால்-
நிலையா மன, வஞ்சனை, நேயம் இலா
விலை மாதர்கண் யாரும் விழுந்தெனவே.

The stags and all the other deer who saw it

came toward it with desire as great as the ocean,

like all those who fall to whores without love,

skilled at elaborately deceiving heart.

Poet: Kamban

Translated by George L. Hart and Hank Heifetz

The Situation:

Marichan, an uncle of Ravana is disguised as a golden deer to woo Rama and Lakshmana out of the way, so that Ravana can capture Sita. So Marichan takes a form of a golden deer.

The Beautiful Simile:

When the golden deer appears, all the stags and other deers around it just flock towards the golden deer with great desire/lust /passion. He employs a brilliant simile here to describe the situation.  Men in old times used to visit courtesans who were well versed in all arts. They knew how to satisfy a mans need. The men usually think these women really love them and pour their wealth on them. From the courtesans perspective, they just use their art to deceive the man and earn the riches.  Kamban gives this simile to make us understand that the golden deer was too beautiful to believe, a beauty that will attract every one who sees it without any doubt and yet it was deceptive beauty. When some thing seems to be too good , surely something must be suspicious about it, eg. share market, when shares sky rocket in their value suddenly there comes a jolt of a market scandal. But most people fall for the too good to resist offer. Kamban gives you this stanza to point out that even great mind of Rama had fallen for ‘the too good to resist’.


And some thing in the style of my good friend Mr.Vijayakumar(, a sculpture from Prambanan, Java , to end my post today.

Rama and the golden deer


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  1. hi.,.,its very nice.,., recently I started lovin Tamil.,, this blog increased it.,., thank you.,.,Nice work.,.

  2. Hello friend : A proverb to suit the situation is MINNUVATHELLAM PONNALLA. Thank you.

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