Hanuman Chalisa Chaupai 38 Meaning in English

Devotees sing the Hanuman Chalisa with devotion in temples and during religious gatherings.

Hanuman Chalisa Chaupai 38 in English with Meaning & Analysis

Hanuman Chalisa Chaupai 38 Liberation

जो सत बार
पाठ कर कोई ।
छूटहि बंदि
महा सुख होई ॥

Jo sat bar
path kar koi.
Chhutehi bandhi
maha sukh hoyi

Whoever a hundred times
recites this song
Will be liberated
and very happy

Hanuman Chalisa Chaupai 38 Meaning in English

This chaupai states that chanting the Hanuman Chalisa a hundred times will grant us liberation. Hanuman will make this happen; it is the kindness he is asked to bestow upon us in the previous chaupai. Happiness in Hinduism is of two types: material and spiritual. In material happiness, our desires are met. In spiritual happiness, we outgrow desire itself.

The technique for the latter is known only to gurus, who reveal it to deserving students, the gosains, who master the techniques of yoga. But according to this verse, simply chanting the Hanuman Chalisa will invoke Hanuman who will grant us spiritual happiness. This outgrowing of desire is liberation.

Many people confuse the Hindu idea of liberation (mukti) with the Christian idea of salvation. In Christian mythology, humans are born in sin and can be saved from eternal damnation if they accept the love of Jesus Christ, the son of God, who takes upon himself the sins of the world. This is salvation. In Hindu mythology, humans are born in debt and incur more debt by indulging desires. Liberation happens when we repay this debt, and incur no more debts.

In Vedic times, the purpose of a yagna was simply to invoke deities for the sake of material happiness. But then the Buddha came along and declared this desire for material happiness as the root of all misery. He encouraged people to become monks. As more and more chose the monastic life over marriage, social structure was threatened.

So the Dharma-shastras came to be written, and the idea of debt was elaborated upon. It was argued that liberation could not happen unless debts were repaid to the ancestors (pitr): they gave us life and were now in the land of the dead patiently waiting for their descendents to facilitate their return to the land of the living. Stories were told of forest hermits tormented by visions of suffering ancestors demanding they marry and produce children. Liberation could only follow the fulfilment of worldly obligations. In other words, after retirement!
Hanuman Chalisa Chaupai 38 Meaning in English 1

Later, in the Bhagavad Gita, we find the idea that one does not have to renounce the world, or wait for retirement, to be liberated. We can be liberated while living the life of a householder, if we do our duties, without any expectations.

This idea of one who is liberated while being a productive member of society is embodied in the idea of Ram. He is engaged with society, yet free. Chanting the Hanuman Chalisa, we are told, will give us the strength to fulfil our duties and so repay our debts, and at the same time, overcome our desires and prevent incurring new debts.

If we spend our life indulging our hungers and fears then we generate a debt which we are obliged to repay in future lives. Thus we are trapped in the cycle of birth and death. The only way to break this cycle is to stop generating debt. This demands outgrowing hunger and fear. This can only happen when we empathize with the hunger and fear of those around us.

When we empathize with the other, and work for them, like Ram, and like Hanuman who serves Ram, we become one with Ram, who has no debts, or desires, and so is eternally tranquil. This union of the self (jiva-atma) with the divine (param-atma) is called moksha. And the easiest way to achieve this is to chant the Hanuman Chalisa a hundred times.

Hanuman Chalisa Chaupai 38 Analysis in English

jo shata bara patha kara koi
chhutahi bandi maha sukha ho ||38||

By reciting this a hundred times
Gives freedom from bondage and pure bliss. (38)

King Rama’s sacrificial horse for Ashwamedha yagya had been captured. Who could show such audacity? It was Champak, the son of the king of Surat. His act meant there would be war between the two armies. Before that, Angad was sent to negotiate. Angad had always proven himself to be a skilled negotiator. Perhaps, he could avert the war even this time.

However, he failed to convince the king to release the horse. For unknown reasons, the king of Surat was adamant on fighting a war. He refused to hear a word on that matter. Unhappy with the turn of events, Angad returned. On his way back, he overheard two soldiers talking. The few words he could make sense of were that their king was immortal, thanks to a boon granted to him by the god of death. Confused at how a mere mortal could be immortal, Angad hurried back with a heavy heart.

War was declared. A small chunk of the army was led by Pushkala, the son of Bharat, to fight the army of Champaka. Champaka was a war veteran and easily defeated Pushkala. Instead of continuing the war, Hanuman decided to meet the king. He had heard that the king was a pious man and he thought that it should not be too difficult to convince him.

After all, no sane person would want to go through the trauma of war if it was avoidable. But how much ever Hanuman tried to persuade, the king would not move from his stand. His obstinacy made Hanuman suspicious. He went back but returned to the court in a small form so that no one could see him.

What he heard cleared the entire mystery. The king was telling his son, “Yamaraj had told me that I could leave this body only if Lord Rama himself comes to my abode to release me from the cycle of birth and death. My intention is not to fight the war.

My intention is not to trouble his devotees. But how else will Lord Rama come here? I have to do all this for my selfish reasons.” Hanuman heard all of this and saw the crying king being consoled by his son. Hanuman felt a stab of pain in his heart. How he wished he could help this pious king.

Next day, Hanuman came into the war zone. To match his power, the king of Surat ventured out too. They fought tooth and nail, causing a large number of casualties on both sides. But the scene changed suddenly when the king, showing tremendous valour, tied up Hanuman and made him a prisoner of war. With Hanuman out of action, the entire army gave up hope.

Hanuman closed his eyes and did what he thought was best under the circumstances. He chanted Lord Rama’s names. Rama . . . Rama . . . Rama. The holy name echoed in the sky filling the entire space with potent vibrations. Suddenly there was a blinding flash and blowing of conches. Lord Rama appeared with a smile on his lotus face. Hanuman’s ropes fell off and the king of Surat fell too – on the ground to offer his obeisance. His body trembled in delight.

His hair stood on edge. His eyes crying profusely. Showing all symptoms of ecstasy, the King of Surat attained his desired goal of liberation. Hanuman had willingly tied himself to allow freedom to someone deserving. When Hanuman gives blessings, freedom from material bondage is possible. chhutahi bandi maha sukha hoi.

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