I am astounded at the transformation of Jatayu into the Lord himself. Never in any earlier readings of the story (in another language) have I encountered such a description. (Aranya Kanda, Sriramcharit Manas)
Parahit bas jinh ke mann mahim/ Tinh kahu jag durlabh kach nahim//
Tanu taji taat jaahu mam dhama/ Devu kaah tumh poorankama//
Lord Ram spoke to Jatayu : ‘For someone who always places others’ welfare ahead of his ( one who is compassionate. Passion means suffering, compassion-suffering with another) can attain any spiritual heights. Go and attain my abode, my child, after giving up your mortal guise. What is left for me to bless you with? You are complete in yourself.’
Geedh deh taji dhari Hari roopa/ Bhooshan bahu pat peet anoopa//
Syam gaat bisaal bhuj chaari/ Astuthi karat nayan bhari baari//
Jatayu renounced his vulture’s body and assumed the form of Hari. He was dressed in resplendent yellow garbs and was wearing splendiferous ornaments. His body was blue-black in hue, he possessed four mighty hands and his eyes were filled with love and bliss…and he started singing glories of the Lord.
(Note: When attaining salvation aka the abode of the Lord, the devotee is depicted as merging with the Lord himself.)
Searching, I turn to Joseph Campbell’s conversations with Bill Moyers in ‘The Power of Myth’.
‘You quote those lines from the Upanishads : “Thou art the dark blue bird, and the green parrot with red eyes. Thou hast the lightning as thy child. Thou art the season and the seas. Having no beginning, thou dost abide with immanence, whereof all things are born.”
‘There’s a wonderful saying in one of the Upanishads: “Oh wonderful, oh wonderful, oh wonderful, I am food, I am food, I am food! I am an eater of food, I am an eater of food, I am an eater of food.“…A yielding to the flow is the great mystery experience that goes with thanking an animal that is about to be eaten for having given of itself. You, too, will be given in time.
‘I’m nature, nature is me.’
And then, Dr.Clarissa Pinkola Estes, in ‘Women who run with the wolves’…
‘ She is the Life/ Death/Life force, she is the incubator. She is intuition, she is far-seer, she is deep listener, she is loyal heart. She encourages humans to remain multiligual; fluent in the languages of dreams, passion, and poetry. She whispers from night dreams, she leaves behind on the terrain of a woman’s soul a coarse hair and muddy footprints. These fill women with longing to find her, free her, and love her.
She is ideas, feelings, urges, and memory. She has been lost and half forgotten for a long, long, time. She is the source, the light, the night, the dark, and day break. She is the smell of good mud and the back leg of a fox. The birds which tell us secrets belong to her. She is the voice that says, ‘This way, this way.’
She is the one who thunders after injustice. She is the one who turns like a great wheel. She is the maker of cycles. She is the one we leave home to look for. She is the one we come home to. She is the mucky root of all women. She is the things that keep us going when we think we’re done for. She is the incubator of raw little ideas and deals. She is the mind which think us, we are the thoughts that she thinks.‘
I am at peace.