Jambavan King of Bears Ramayana

Jambavan is a very prominent character in the Hindu epic Ramayana. In the epic tradition and several other sources, he has been mentioned as the King of the Bears. However, in certain other sources he has also been mentioned as the chief of the Vanaras (monkeys). He was created by Lord Brahma to assist Rama during his war against Ravana. Jambavan is said to be immortal. The churning the ocean episode sees Jambavan and he has also said to have who circled Vamana (the avatar of Vishnu) three times, when he was acquiring three worlds from Mahabali.

Historic references and contributions 

Jambavan’s sole purpose of birth was to serve Lord Rama and help him wage a war against Ravana. It is said that in his previous birth, he was the King of the Himalayas. His devotion and loyalty towards Rama, earned him a blessing from him to have a very long life and to have the strength of ten million lions. Jambavan was of extreme help to Rama in finding his wife Sita. He was the one who motivated Hanumana to realize his complete potentials and fly above the oceans to search for Sita in Lanka. Jambavan also lived in Krishna’s era. In the Mahabharata, Jambavan had killed a lion, who had acquired the Syamantaka gem from Prasena after killing him. The reason why Jambavan could not himself jump over the oceans to find Sita was because he had injured his shoulder during the episode of Vishnu taking his Vamana avatar. Vamana shoulder struck Jamnavan and it hit him hard. Thus, he was too injured to fly and had to encourage Hanuman to do the job.

Jambavan King of Bears Ramayana

Jambavan was the one to have knowledge about the Vishyalakarni plant which he gathered during Samudra mantha. When Laxmana was fatally injured during the war, he asked Hanuman to get the herb that grows on a far off mountain, in order to cure Lakshmana.

Anecdotes and city of Jambavanta

Besides Parashurama and Hanumana, Jambavan was the only character to have survived through both the incarnations of Vishnu, namely Rama and Krishna. He is said to have witnessed the Kurma and Vaman avatar too, so probably he was the only one who had seen Vishnu all nine avatars. Jambavan’s ancient city Jambavanta is said to be the modern day Ratlam district in Madhya Pradesh.

Other Names of Jambavan

Sambuvan (Tamil)
Jambuwana (Malay)
Zabaman (Burmese)
Chomphuphan (Thai)


  1. Very precisely, the story of Jambaban has been exhibited in an excellent way. Thanks Sri Abhilash.

  2. dear friend excellent details about Jambhavan. But he never killed prasena(satrajit's brother) instead he killed the lion in a forest(which previously took the life of prasena) and took the syamantaka mani.

  3. @ Maravaram Thank you for pointing it my friend. I have changed the details.

  4. @ AP Panda, Thanks ji for the feedback. Hindu Devotional Blog Visitors like you are very precious to me.

  5. @abhilash thanks for ur reply ithihasa and puranas has lot of in built meanings and valuable messages to the society. People like you are doing great job by posting this message in blogs .Thanks again for spending your valuable time. Jai Sri Krishna


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