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Once upon a time,
in the ancient city of
Ayodhya lived a King.
His name was
Dashratha.
He was a great
and happy King.
The King had
four sons.
Rama is the eldest and
favorite son of the King.
His mother is Kaushalya.
Bharata is the son of his
second and favorite wife,
Queen Kaikeyi.
Rama and Bharata are
blue, perhaps indicating
they were dark skinned or
originally south Indian
deities.
A sage takes the boys out to train them
in archery. Rama has hit an apple
hanging from a string.
In a neighboring city the
ruler's daughter is named
Sita. When it was time for
Sita to choose her
bridegroom, at a
ceremony called a
swayamvara, the princes
were asked to string a
giant bow.
No one else can even lift
the bow, but as Rama
bends it, he not only strings
it but breaks it in two.
Sita indicates she has
chosen Rama as her
husband by putting a
garland around his neck.
The disappointed suitors
watch.
King Dasharatha, Rama's father,
decides it is time to give his
throne to his eldest son Rama
and retire to the forest to seek
moksha. Everyone seems
pleased. This plan fulfills the
rules of dharma because an
eldest son should rule and, if a
son can take over one's
responsibilities, one's last years
may be spent in a search for
moksha. In addition, everyone
loves Rama.
However Rama's step-mother,
the king's second wife, is not
pleased. She wants her son,
Bharata, to rule. Because of an
oath Dasharatha had made to
her years before, she gets the
king to agree to banish Rama
for fourteen years and to crown
Bharata, even though the king,
on bended knee, begs her not to
demand such things. Broken-
hearted, the devastated king
cannot face Rama with the news
and Kaikeyi must tell him.
Rama, always
obedient, is as content
to go into banishment
in the forest as to be
crowned king. Sita
convinces Rama that
she belongs at his
side and his brother
Lakshman also begs
to accompany them.
Rama, Sita and
Lakshman set out for
the forest.
Bharata, whose mother's evil plot has won him the
throne, is very upset when he finds out what has
happened. Not for a moment does he consider
breaking the rules of dharma and becoming king in
Rama's place
He goes to Rama's forest
retreat and begs Rama to
return and rule, but
Rama refuses. "We must
obey father," Rama says.
Bharata then takes
Rama's sandals saying, "I
will put these on the
throne, and every day I
shall place the fruits of
my work at the feet on my
Lord." Embracing Rama,
he takes the sandals and
returns to Aydohya.
Years pass and Rama, Sita and Lakshman are
very happy in the forest. Rama and Lakshman
destroy the rakshasas (evil creatures) who
disturb the sages in their meditations
One day a rakshasa princess tries to seduce Rama, and
Lakshmana wounds her and drives her away. She returns to
her brother Ravana, the ten-headed ruler of Lanka (Sri Lanka,
formerly Ceylon), and tells her brother (who has a weakness
for beautiful women) about lovely Sita.
Ravana devises a plan to abduct Sita. He sends a magical
golden deer which Sita desires. Rama and Lakshman go off to
hunt the deer, first drawing a protective circle around Sita and
warning her she will be safe as long as she does not step outside
the circle. As they go off, Ravana (who can change his shape)
appears as a holy man begging alms. The moment Sita steps
outside the circle to give him food, Ravana grabs her and carries
her off the his kingdom in Lanka.
Rama is broken-hearted
when he returns to the
empty hut and cannot
find Sita.
A band of monkeys offer to help him find Sita. Ravana has
carried Sita to his palace in Lanka, but he cannot force her to be
his wife so he puts her in a grove and alternately sweet-talks her
and threatens her in an attempt to get her to agree to marry him.
Sita will not even look at him but thinks only of her beloved
Rama. Hanuman, the general of the monkey band can fly since
his father is the wind, and Hanuman flies to Lanka and, finding
Sita in the grove, comforts her and tells her Rama will soon come
and save her.
Rama, Lakshman and the monkey army build a causeway
from the tip of India to Lanka and cross over to Lanka. A
might battle ensues. Rama kills several of Ravana's brothers
and then
Rama confronts ten-headed Ravana. (Ravana is known for
his wisdom as well as for his weakness for women which may
explain why he is pictured as very brainy.) Rama finally kills
Ravana.
Rama frees Sita. After Sita proves here purity, they
return to Ayodhya and Rama becomes king. His rule,
Ram-rajya, is an ideal time when everyone does his or
her dharma and "fathers never have to light the funeral
pyres for their sons."
Dasaratha -- King of Ayodhya
(capital of Kosala), whose eldest
son was Rama. Dasaratha had
three wives and four sons -- Rama,
Bharata, and the twins Lakshmana
and Satrughna.
Rama -- Dasaratha's first-born son, and the
upholder of Dharma (correct conduct and
duty). Rama, along with his wife Sita, have
served as role models for thousands of
generations in India and elsewhere. Rama is
regarded by many Hindus as an incarnation of
the god Vishnu, and by Southeast Asian
Buddhists as an incarnation of the Buddha.
Sita -- Rama's wife, the adopted daughter
of King Janak. Sita was found in the
furrows of a sacred field, and was
regarded by the people of Janak's
kingdom as a blessed child.
Bharata -- Rama's brother by Queen
Kaikeyi. When Bharata learned of
his mother's scheme to banish Rama
and place him on the throne, he put
Rama's sandals on the throne and
ruled Ayodhya in his name.
Hanuman -- A leader of the monkey tribe
allied with Rama against Ravana.
Hanuman has many magical powers
because his father was the god of the
wind. Hanuman's devotion to Rama, and his
supernatural feats in the battle to
recapture Sita, has made him one of the
most popular characters in the
Ramayana.
Ravana -- The 10-headed king of
Lanka who abducted Sita
Kaushlaya -- Dasaratha's first
wife, and the mother of Rama
Lakshmana -- Rama's younger
brother by Dasaratha's third
wife, Sumitra. When Rama and
Sita were exiled to the forest,
Lakshmana followed in order
to serve.
The importance of one man being
wedded to only one wife
During Ramayana period, polygamy was quite
prevalent and it was quite an acceptable social norm for
kings to marry many women. Rama's own father
Dasaratha was wedded to 3 wives (queens) and he had
innumerable concubines at his palace. In a stark
contrast to his father, Rama remained wedded and
staunchly loyal to his only wife Sita.With this
qualification, he held his head high as the greatest king
ever ruled in Bharat (India). He set example for future
generations of men as to what constitutes a sterling
quality for the respectability of a man in society.
Respecting father's word of Honor
Just on the previous night to Rama's crowning
ceremony, Kaikeyi made use of her boons not only to
deny Rama his rightful ascend to the kingdom, but also
to send him in exile to the forest. Rama, as a kshatriya (a
person belonging to ruler/ warrior class), had every
right to question such an injustice meted out to him
and he was in not really duty-bound to honor his
father's unjust promises. But true to his greatness,
Rama, with utter detachment and without even a trace
of disappointment reflecting on his face, conceded to
both the demands. For him, "pitru vakya paripalanam"
(honoring his father's words) was one of the highest
dharmas.
Relationship between Dharma, Artha,
Kama and Moksha
Human life is consumed in chasing
materialism (Artha) and sense pleasures (Kama).
Ramayana makes it clear that these two
pursuits should never be at the cost of Dharma
(righteousness). In withholding dharma, both artha
and Kama can be and must be sacrificed.
The ultimate goal of life is Moksha (liberation)
and it can be attained only by relinquishing Artha
and Kama and by strictly following a life of Dharma.
GOD BLESS!

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RAMAYANA

  • 1.
  • 2.
  • 3. Once upon a time, in the ancient city of Ayodhya lived a King. His name was Dashratha. He was a great and happy King.
  • 5. Rama is the eldest and favorite son of the King. His mother is Kaushalya. Bharata is the son of his second and favorite wife, Queen Kaikeyi. Rama and Bharata are blue, perhaps indicating they were dark skinned or originally south Indian deities.
  • 6. A sage takes the boys out to train them in archery. Rama has hit an apple hanging from a string.
  • 7. In a neighboring city the ruler's daughter is named Sita. When it was time for Sita to choose her bridegroom, at a ceremony called a swayamvara, the princes were asked to string a giant bow.
  • 8. No one else can even lift the bow, but as Rama bends it, he not only strings it but breaks it in two. Sita indicates she has chosen Rama as her husband by putting a garland around his neck. The disappointed suitors watch.
  • 9. King Dasharatha, Rama's father, decides it is time to give his throne to his eldest son Rama and retire to the forest to seek moksha. Everyone seems pleased. This plan fulfills the rules of dharma because an eldest son should rule and, if a son can take over one's responsibilities, one's last years may be spent in a search for moksha. In addition, everyone loves Rama.
  • 10. However Rama's step-mother, the king's second wife, is not pleased. She wants her son, Bharata, to rule. Because of an oath Dasharatha had made to her years before, she gets the king to agree to banish Rama for fourteen years and to crown Bharata, even though the king, on bended knee, begs her not to demand such things. Broken- hearted, the devastated king cannot face Rama with the news and Kaikeyi must tell him.
  • 11. Rama, always obedient, is as content to go into banishment in the forest as to be crowned king. Sita convinces Rama that she belongs at his side and his brother Lakshman also begs to accompany them. Rama, Sita and Lakshman set out for the forest.
  • 12. Bharata, whose mother's evil plot has won him the throne, is very upset when he finds out what has happened. Not for a moment does he consider breaking the rules of dharma and becoming king in Rama's place
  • 13. He goes to Rama's forest retreat and begs Rama to return and rule, but Rama refuses. "We must obey father," Rama says. Bharata then takes Rama's sandals saying, "I will put these on the throne, and every day I shall place the fruits of my work at the feet on my Lord." Embracing Rama, he takes the sandals and returns to Aydohya.
  • 14. Years pass and Rama, Sita and Lakshman are very happy in the forest. Rama and Lakshman destroy the rakshasas (evil creatures) who disturb the sages in their meditations
  • 15. One day a rakshasa princess tries to seduce Rama, and Lakshmana wounds her and drives her away. She returns to her brother Ravana, the ten-headed ruler of Lanka (Sri Lanka, formerly Ceylon), and tells her brother (who has a weakness for beautiful women) about lovely Sita.
  • 16. Ravana devises a plan to abduct Sita. He sends a magical golden deer which Sita desires. Rama and Lakshman go off to hunt the deer, first drawing a protective circle around Sita and warning her she will be safe as long as she does not step outside the circle. As they go off, Ravana (who can change his shape) appears as a holy man begging alms. The moment Sita steps outside the circle to give him food, Ravana grabs her and carries her off the his kingdom in Lanka.
  • 17. Rama is broken-hearted when he returns to the empty hut and cannot find Sita.
  • 18. A band of monkeys offer to help him find Sita. Ravana has carried Sita to his palace in Lanka, but he cannot force her to be his wife so he puts her in a grove and alternately sweet-talks her and threatens her in an attempt to get her to agree to marry him. Sita will not even look at him but thinks only of her beloved Rama. Hanuman, the general of the monkey band can fly since his father is the wind, and Hanuman flies to Lanka and, finding Sita in the grove, comforts her and tells her Rama will soon come and save her.
  • 19. Rama, Lakshman and the monkey army build a causeway from the tip of India to Lanka and cross over to Lanka. A might battle ensues. Rama kills several of Ravana's brothers and then Rama confronts ten-headed Ravana. (Ravana is known for his wisdom as well as for his weakness for women which may explain why he is pictured as very brainy.) Rama finally kills Ravana.
  • 20. Rama frees Sita. After Sita proves here purity, they return to Ayodhya and Rama becomes king. His rule, Ram-rajya, is an ideal time when everyone does his or her dharma and "fathers never have to light the funeral pyres for their sons."
  • 21.
  • 22. Dasaratha -- King of Ayodhya (capital of Kosala), whose eldest son was Rama. Dasaratha had three wives and four sons -- Rama, Bharata, and the twins Lakshmana and Satrughna.
  • 23. Rama -- Dasaratha's first-born son, and the upholder of Dharma (correct conduct and duty). Rama, along with his wife Sita, have served as role models for thousands of generations in India and elsewhere. Rama is regarded by many Hindus as an incarnation of the god Vishnu, and by Southeast Asian Buddhists as an incarnation of the Buddha.
  • 24. Sita -- Rama's wife, the adopted daughter of King Janak. Sita was found in the furrows of a sacred field, and was regarded by the people of Janak's kingdom as a blessed child.
  • 25. Bharata -- Rama's brother by Queen Kaikeyi. When Bharata learned of his mother's scheme to banish Rama and place him on the throne, he put Rama's sandals on the throne and ruled Ayodhya in his name.
  • 26. Hanuman -- A leader of the monkey tribe allied with Rama against Ravana. Hanuman has many magical powers because his father was the god of the wind. Hanuman's devotion to Rama, and his supernatural feats in the battle to recapture Sita, has made him one of the most popular characters in the Ramayana.
  • 27. Ravana -- The 10-headed king of Lanka who abducted Sita
  • 28. Kaushlaya -- Dasaratha's first wife, and the mother of Rama
  • 29. Lakshmana -- Rama's younger brother by Dasaratha's third wife, Sumitra. When Rama and Sita were exiled to the forest, Lakshmana followed in order to serve.
  • 30.
  • 31. The importance of one man being wedded to only one wife During Ramayana period, polygamy was quite prevalent and it was quite an acceptable social norm for kings to marry many women. Rama's own father Dasaratha was wedded to 3 wives (queens) and he had innumerable concubines at his palace. In a stark contrast to his father, Rama remained wedded and staunchly loyal to his only wife Sita.With this qualification, he held his head high as the greatest king ever ruled in Bharat (India). He set example for future generations of men as to what constitutes a sterling quality for the respectability of a man in society.
  • 32. Respecting father's word of Honor Just on the previous night to Rama's crowning ceremony, Kaikeyi made use of her boons not only to deny Rama his rightful ascend to the kingdom, but also to send him in exile to the forest. Rama, as a kshatriya (a person belonging to ruler/ warrior class), had every right to question such an injustice meted out to him and he was in not really duty-bound to honor his father's unjust promises. But true to his greatness, Rama, with utter detachment and without even a trace of disappointment reflecting on his face, conceded to both the demands. For him, "pitru vakya paripalanam" (honoring his father's words) was one of the highest dharmas.
  • 33. Relationship between Dharma, Artha, Kama and Moksha Human life is consumed in chasing materialism (Artha) and sense pleasures (Kama). Ramayana makes it clear that these two pursuits should never be at the cost of Dharma (righteousness). In withholding dharma, both artha and Kama can be and must be sacrificed. The ultimate goal of life is Moksha (liberation) and it can be attained only by relinquishing Artha and Kama and by strictly following a life of Dharma.
  • 34.