~ 81. How Ravana Tricked Jatayu ~


Jatayu could have rescued Sita, but Ravana had tricked him.
"Where exactly does your strength reside?" Ravana asked Jatayu.
Jatayu didn't reply; he just kept fighting.
"My strength is in my right big toe," Ravana said. 
Honor then compelled Jatayu to share his secret, as Ravana had. "My strength is in my wings!" Jatayu said as he swooped down and began pecking at Ravana's toe.
But nothing happened. Ravana had lied: his strength wasn't in his toe but in his navel, where he concealed the pot of immortal nectar.
Ravana then tore Jatayu's wings to shreds, laughing, while Sita wept.


Inspired by: Sita: An Illustrated Retelling of the Ramayana by Devdutt Pattanaik.
Notes: This folktale is on p. 136 of the book. 

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