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Indrajit was capable of using Brahmastra as he did against Lord Hanuman in Ashoka Vana (this incident is narrated in Sundara Kanda)

Question:

Why didn't Indrajit use the Brahmastra against Lord Rama or Lakshmana or the vanara army in the main war (Yuddha Kanda) just as the Nagastras he used?

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On the contrary, Indrajit actually fired the Brahmāstra on Rāma and Lakṣmaṇa in the main war of Rāmāyaṇa.

When both Rāma and Lakṣmaṇa are lying unconscious in the battlefield, this is what Vibhīṣaṇa says:

तस्मै तु दत्तं परमास्त्रमेतत् | त्स्वयम्भुवा ब्राह्मममोघवेगम् |
तन्मानयन्तौ यदि राजपुत्रौ | निपातितौ को अत्र विषादकालः || ६-७४-४

4. etat = this; braahmam paramaastram = excellent missile presided over by Brahma the creator amoghaviiryam = with never-failing strength; dattam = was given; svayambhuvaa = by Brahma; tasmai = to Indrajit; maanayantau = honouring; tat = it; rajaputrau = the two princes; nipaatitau = were made to fall down; yudhi = in battle; kaH = what is the use of; viShaada kaalaH = a time for despondency; atra = here.

This excellent missile, presided over by Brahma the creator, with never-failing strength, was given to Indrajit by Brahma. Honouring it, Rama and Lakshmana the princes fell down in battle. This not a time for despondency here.

Before Indrajit makes his first appearance in the main war, this is what he does:

सोऽस्त्रमाहारयामास ब्राह्ममस्त्रविदां वरः || ६-७३-२७
धनुश्चात्मरथं चैव सर्वं तत्राभ्यमन्त्रयत् |

Indrajit, who was skilled in the use of mystic missiles, invoked the missile presided over by Brahma and charged it on his bow, chariot and all.

Before falling to the ground, Rāma suspects Indrajit has somehow employed the brahmāstra and says the following to Lakṣmaṇa:

मन्ये स्वयम्भूर्भगवानचिन्त्यो | यस्यैतदस्त्रं प्रभवश् च योऽस्य|
बाणावपातांस्त्वमिहाद्य धीमन् मया सहाव्यग्रमनाः सहस्व || ६-७३-७०

I think the self-born Brahma who is the source of the universe is inconceivable and this missile is presided over by him. O wise one! Remaining undistracted in mind, you bear along with me today the hail of arrows here.

  • In the end of indrajits fight against lakshman was he not able to use brahmastra against him or is there any rules for using brahmastra against a person twice – Sakthi Jan 6 '17 at 3:15
  • @sakthi I'm not aware of any specific rules for brahmāstra. From what I heard, in the same one-on-one battle (not the whole war), you are not supposed to use the same weapon again - I'm not sure if it applies to both astra and śastra. So technically Indrajit could have used brahmāstra again on Lakṣmaṇa if he wanted to because it was a different battle. And even if Indrajit did you use brahmāstra again, Lakṣmaṇa could have easily countered it with his own brahmāstra. As I mention in my answer here one brahmāstra can be countered by another. – sv. Jan 6 '17 at 4:07
  • @sv. The answer you have provided in the comment seems useful and I suggest you to cite it in your above answer. – Sarvabhouma Jan 6 '17 at 4:52

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