Hanuman, the Vayu Putra, is the most powerful and sacred character in the Ramayana. Hanuman also had a role to play in Mahabharata.
Bhima, also the Putra of Vayu who took birth in Kunti’s womb was the strongest of the Pandavas. And with great power, Bhima felt undefeatable and this was right before the great war of Kurukshetra. Hanuman figured that Bhima’s arrogance could be a setback and his overconfidence would lead him to lose the war. Hence Hanuman decided to trick him and teach him a lesson in humility.
Once when Bhima was on a quest to get the flower that his beloved wife Draupadi desired, on his way in the wild jungle he came across an old monkey who was in his way.
Bhima with his beastly voice said, “Hey you old monkey get up from my way. I’m a great warrior and with the help of my mace I can kill anybody that comes in my way.”
Looking at him the old monkey said, “Being an old monkey I really do not have strength so why don’t you just move my tail and walk ahead”
Bhima thought that it would be a child’s play for him to lift the tail of the old monkey and thus mocking the monkey, he kicked his tail. But the tail did not move even slightly. He then tried to lift the tail but failed. With the failure to lift the tail further, Bhima realized that it was no ordinary monkey.
Soon Hanuman restored to his original form. Seeing Hanuman, his brother, Bhima was overwhelmed. Bhima requested Hanuman to be the part of the battlefield of Kurukshetra. Hanuman humbly declined and said to his brother, “Your path ahead is perilous. It is the path of the gods and is not safe for men.So I came to caution you. When you roar like a lion on the battlefield, my voice shall join yours and strike terror in the hearts of your enemies. You will be victorious”.And Hanuman embraced Bhima. With the embrace, Bhima’s strength Had also increased.
Hanuman had freed his brother Bhima from his ego and to give him the greater strength to fight his enemies.