This article reveals the many members of Lord Ravana’s family. Lord Ravana’s parents were Vishrava (son of Pulastya) and Kaikesi (daughter of Sumali and Thataka). Kaikesi had two brothers Maricha and Subahu which would effectively make them Lord Ravana’s uncles.
Lord Ravana had six brothers and two sisters:
- Lord Kubera – the King of North direction and the Guardian of Heavenly Wealth. He was an older half-brother of Lord Ravana: they were born to the same father by different mothers.
- Vibhishana – A great follower of Lord Ram and one of the most important characters in the Ramayana. As a minister and brother of Lord Ravana, he spoke the truth without fear and advised Lord Ravana to return the kidnapped Sita and uphold Dharma. Lord Ravana not only rejected this sane advice, but also banished him from his kingdom. Vibhishana sought protection from Lord Ram, which was granted without hesitation.
- Kumbhakarna – One of the most jovial demons in Hindu history. When offered a boon by Lord Brahma, he was tricked into asking for eternal sleep. A horrified Lord Ravana, out of brotherly love, persuaded Lord Brahma to amend the boon. Lord Brahma mitigated the power of the boon by making Kumbhakarna sleep for six months and being awake for rest six months of a year (in some versions, he is awake for one day out of the year). During the war with Lord Ram, Kumbhakarna was untimely awakened from his sleep. He tried to persuade Lord Ravana to open negotiations with Lord Ram and return Sita to him. But he too failed to mend the ways of Lord Ravana. However, bound by a brother’s duty, he fought on the side of Lord Ravana and was killed in the battlefield. Before dying he met Vibhishana and blessed him for following path of righteousness.
- King Khara – King of Janasthan. He protected the northern kingdom of Lanka in the mainland and his kingdom bordered with the Kosala Kingdom, the kingdom of Lord Ram. He was well known for his superior skills in warfare.
- Dushana – Viceroy of Janasthan.
- King Ahiravan – King of the Underworld ruled by the rakshasas by Lord Ravana and Demon King Maya.
- Kumbhini – Sister of Lord Ravana and the wife of the demon Madhu, King of Mathura, she was the mother of Lavanasura (an Asura who was killed by Shatrughna, the youngest brother of Lord Ram). She was renowned for her beauty and later retired to the sea for penance.
- Surpanakha – The sister of Lord Ravana. She was the ultimate root of the kidnapping of Sita. She was the one who instigated her brothers to wage a war against Lord Ram.
Lord Ravana was married to Mandodari, the daughter of the celestial architect Maya, Dhanyamalini, and a third wife. He had seven sons from his three wives:
- Meghnaad (Also known as Indrajit because he defeated Lord Indra), the most powerful son.
- Atikaya (Atikaya was the younger brother of Indrajit and was extremely powerful. Once upon a time when he infuriated Lord Shiva atop Mount Kailasha, the deity hurled his Trishul (divine trident) at Atikaya, but Atikaya caught the Trishul in mid air and folded his hands before the lord in a humble manner. Lord Shiva was pleased at seeing this, and benevolently blessed Atikaya with the secrets of archery and divine weapons).
- Akshayakumara (the youngest son of Lord Ravana, He fought valiantly with Lord Hanuman, aiming various weapons at him. Though highly impressed by the young prince’s valor and skills, finally Lord Hanuman had to kill him).
- Devantaka (Killed by Lord Hanuman during the war).
- Narantaka (Was in charge of an army consisting of 720 million rakshas (demons). He with his army were eventually killed by the monkey prince Angada)
- Trishira (He engaged Lord Ram in a fight and hit him with a number of arrows. At this Lord Ram told him that the arrows were nothing but like flowers being showered on his body. Thereafter, a duel ensued, in which Lord Ram killed Trishira).
- Prahasta (Chief Commander of Lord Ravana’s army in Lanka).