^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ SYMBOLS OF TWELVE MAJOR WORLD RELIGIONS ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^




Sri Krishna  declares in Bhagavat Gita: “I come into being in every Age for the protection of the good, for the destruction of the wicked, and for the establishment of Dharma (Righteousness).” It is also a common belief of Hindus that Lord Vishnu, the All-Pervading Supreme Being incarnates in every Age.[Picture: Source: Net]

Sri Rama, son of a glorious King Dasaratha of Ayodhya is believed to be an incarnation of Lord Vishnu in Treta Yuga. His task then was to rid of Bharath from the onslaught and oppression of the Rakshasas who ruled in Sri Lanka at that time, to protect the saints and sages and show an ideal and perfect life to the Society.

The King Dasaratha had three wives – Kausalya, Kaikeyi and Sumitra but was not blessed with a son to succeed him to the throne. So he performed a horse- sacrifice under the guidance of sage Rishya–Sringa. In sacrificial fire a majestic figure came out holding a pot of Payasam. It was distributed to all three queens. In course of time Sri Rama was born of Queen Kausalya, Bharata of Queen Kaikeyi and Lakshmana and Satrughana of Queen Sumitra[Picture Courtesy:netglimse.com]. The sons are considered to be the parts of Lord Vishnu. The eldest son Sri Rama was the repository of all divine qualities, the object of love and reverence of all. They received all the training prescribed for princes. Lakhsmana was specially devoted to Sri Rama.

Sri Sita garlanding Sri Rama
 When Sri Rama was only sixteen – years age, sage Viswamitra came oneday to Ayodhya. He asked Dasaratha to send Sri Rama and Lakshmana with him to slay the demons who were creating disturbances and were not allowing the sages to do their sacrificial rites. By the blessing of the sage Viswamitra and by his own powers and skill in archery, Sri Rama killed all the demons. Receiving the blessing of the sages, the brothers were brought to Mithila, the capital of the renowned king Janaka. Here Sri Rama exhibited his wonderful strength and skill by lifting and stringing the wondrous bow of Lord Shiva, which many mighty princes had failed to do. He drew back the bow-string with such a force that the weapon snapped asunder with terrific noise. King Janaka, true to his promise, gave his dearest and lustrous daughter Sita in marriage to Sri Rama.[picture courtesy; hindudevotional.blog.com]

In course of time Dasaratha became old, and he wanted to install Sri Rama as the crown prince. All arrangements were complete, when all of a sudden the cruel queen Kaikeyi who was ill-advised by her very crooked maid servant Manthara, asked Dasratha for two boons, which he had once promised. By one boon, Sri Rama should be banished for fourteen years and by the second boon, her son Bharatha should be installed as the crown-prince. Being deeply devoted to father, Sri Rama at once retired to the forest, accompanied by Sita and Lakshmana. Unable to bear the rude shock of his separation from Sri Rama, Dasaratha died. Bharatha who had great reverence and love for Sri Rama tried in vain to bring back Sri Rama. Then he ultimately installed Sri Rama’s sandals on the throne and started ruling the kingdom in the name of Sri Rama.

Sri Rama, Sita and Lakshmana went to Panchavati. During the absence of Sri Rama and Lakshmana, who had been drawn away by the deception of Rakshasa Maricha, Sita was abducted by Ravana, the Rakshasa King of Lanka.

Ravana tried his best to persuade Sita to become his queen. But Sita rejected his evil proposal with all contempt. Ravana imprisoned her in a grove called Ashokavanam. She was always absorbed in the thought of Sri Rama.

Sri Rama set out with Lakshmana in search for Sita. He got some clue from the dying Jatayu and the Vanara King Sugriva. He also met his great devotee Hanuman[picture:courtesy:devotionalonly.com] who was the most faithful to him. He helped Sri Rama to find Sita. He helped Sugriva to destroy his usurping brother Vali and made him king. With help of the army that was provided by king Suriva he reached Lanka for the rescue of Sita.
A great battle took place between Sri Rama and Ravana. In the end Sri Rama killed Ravana, his brother Kumbakarana, sons and all warriors, and rescued Sita. At first Sri Rama refused to accept Sita, as she had been confined so long by Ravana. To prove her innocence Sita entered fire [See picture: Courtesy: flickr.com]. Agni, the god of Fire, came out with Sita declaring her to be of unsullied purity. She bade Sri Rama to take her back as his wife. Sri Rama’s joy knew no bounds.


Sri Rama installed Vibhishana, the brother of Ravana, on the throne of Lanka. He returned to Ayodhya with Sita, Lakshmana, Vibhisana, Sugriva and Hanuman. At the return of Sri Rama after fourteen years people of Ayodhya rejoiced and celebrated the great occasion. Sri Rama along with Sita was crowned as the King of Ayodhya by the sage Vasistha. Thus began the long and prosperous rule of Sri Rama. Every where there was health and happiness It was the ‘Golden Age’ of Ayodhya.

The immortal sage Valmiki has depicted this wonderful and divine life of Sri Rama in his famous epic Ramayana. Even today it is an eternal companion of Hindu households and will remain for ever.

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