Ram Navami – Lord Ram (Maryada Purushottam Rama), the man known for his majestic principles, is worshiped by millions across the globe. Ramayana is one of the awe-inspiring epics of Hindu Mythology scriptured by the sage Valmiki.
The story of the Ramayana conveys a simple pervasive message of dharma versus adharma, of good over evil, to the world. It is used as an educational medium by the ancient sages to exhibit the importance of values such as love and respect towards family, keeping up the promises, protecting the weak and so on.
Ram Navami – Glory Of Lord Rama
Ramayana espouses the importance of performing dharma (duty). It effectively portrays the characters of the ideal father, ideal leader, ideal son, ideal brother, ideal wife, etc.
Explore how you can use Ramayana, a gem among Hindu Mythology to learn moral values and ethics with the following suggestions.
- Dedicated Son
- Beware of Bad Counsel
- The Value of a Promise
- Love and Respect for Parents
- Distinguishing Between Right and Wrong
- Attachments can turn Vicious
- Patience and Determination
- Sibling Love
- Dedication and Devotion
- Be Honest
- A Helpful Friend
- A Compassionate Human Being
- Killing the 10-Headed Demon
- Be Humble
- Faithful Husband
Ram, being the eldest son, could have claimed his right to the throne of Ayodhya but instead opt to give it away to his younger brother, at the assertion of his step-mother Kaikeyi.
Rama obeying his Father’s orders
Moral: Give prominence to family morals. Respect the words of elders. Make sacrifices for those in need.
Eventhough Kaikeyi adored Rama more than his own son, it is due to her bad alliance with Manthara, she became so evil and pledged to send Rama into exile.
Manthara provoking Kaikeyi
Moral: It teaches to stay on guard against vicious counsel and to be firm of mind and not let others sway easily.
Dashrath owed two boons to his wife Kaikeyi, as she saved him during a battlefield before. According to the promise, Kaikeyi presented her desires before the king. The first one was that Rama must spend 14 years in the forest, and the second, that her son, Bharat, must be crowned King. Dashrath was heartbroken at the prospect of having to send him into exile, but for his promise, he performed the highest duty by breathing last.
Moral: It teaches not to tarnish the value of promise for even the smallest disturbances.
Rama’s affirmation on keeping the promise made by his father depicts the deep affection and respect that he possess towards his parents. He whole-heartedly chose to spend in exile to protect his father’s honour. This shows the esteem regards he possess for his father.
Moral: Obeying the parents respectfully and valuing their words.
Choose right over illicit even when wrong may feel more right. This can be explained with the example of Bharat, who even after awarded with the honour of ruling Ayodhya chose his sense of right and wrong placed Rama’s footwear on the throne and ruled Ayodhya under his name until Rama returned to reclaim the position.
Bharatha ruling Ayodhya by putting Rama’s footwear on the throne
Moral: This teaches ‘even if something is exceptionally desirable, it must be attained without affecting anyone in an unlawful manner’.
Sitadevi developed profound affinity towards golden deer (form of Marichi) which later became a trap and confined Sitadevi.
Sita Devi took over by the charm of Golden Deer
Moral: We must develop less affection and feelings towards the materialistic substance as they might turn dreadful.
Long time ago, Guru had asked Shabari (the devotee of Rama) to wait for the Lord until he reaches the place. Shabari thus put her all energy by working hard every day and waited patiently for the Lord to arrive with absolute faith in the words of Guru.
Shabari offering fruits to Rama
Moral: Patience and dedication will get you what you desire even in the long run, if not short.
Selfless brotherly love is very rare in today’s world. Laxman, the Quintessence of selfless love he had towards Rama. He, instead of enjoying the worldly luxuries of being a prince, choose to give up everything voluntarily to live the hardship along with his brother. All because he loved his brother so much.
Lakshmana following foot-steps of his elder brother
Even at an other point in Ramayana, when Surpanakha was offended by Lakshman, her brothers Dooshan and Khaara came to rescue her denying the fact that it might lead to their demise.
Moral: This depicts the love and care among the siblings, and stand up for each other during the tough times.
Dedication & devotion of Hanuman towards his Lord is not to be seen in anyone anywhere in this world. Such was the dedication toward his Lord that Hanuman faced all obstacles, be it burning the Lanka or bringing the Sanjeevani mountain to rescue Laxman from death, he feared nothing and went ahead at his service.
Dedication of Hanuman towards Rama
Moral: Honesty and standing headstrong at the service of your master, during tough times is something we all should learn from Ram bhakt Hanuman.
Honesty in relationship is most important for survival of any relation. Sitaji had so much of love, respect and devotion towards her better half, such that riches, supremacy and fancies of life which she could get from Ravana did not entice her even a bit.
Sita Devi ignoring Ravana
Moral: It is rightly said that marriages are made in heaven and couples who love each other must remain loyal and honest to one another despite any adverse circumstance or flaws they have.
Sugreeva and Vibhishana helped Ram in the war against Ravana. Hence Ram not forgetting their deed, helped Sugreeva win the battle against Bali and presented him the throne of Kishkinda. Lord also exhibited his gratitude towards Vibhishana by crowning him as the King of Lanka.
Sugreeva assisting Rama in the execution of Plan against Ravana
Moral: Be thankful and helpful to the people who served you in your need.
Rama had no restriction in eating the fruits (ber) tasted by poor old woman Shabari.
He was a very compassionate human being who picked the tiny squirrel (that helped build vanarasena) in his palms and delicately stroked it to acknowledge its efforts.
Moral: Exhibiting love and tender towards the people and things around you.
Ravana‘s 10 heads represent anger, crookedness, greed, hatred, infatuation, jealousy, lust, passion, pride and selfishness. By assassinating the demon, Bhagwan Rama re-established the rule of morality and virtue over chaos and lawlessness.
Rama assassinating the demon, Ravana
Moral: This is a message and a symbol for us in our lives to get rid of the self-demons.
At the end of the war, as Rama gave Sitaji a tour of the Lanka city, upon reaching the place where Rama victoriously slew Ravana, and after achieving the great victory, he simply stated, “This is where Ravana died.”
Also, while Ravana lay dying, Rama sent Lakshman to go and hear to words of wisdom from Ravana as Rama believed he was an eminent scholar and from whom great intelligence could be acquired.
Moral: Be always submissive, and never attain credit for own achievements.
Lord Ram put his will and determination in finding and rescuing his wife Sita from the clutches of Ravana, by waging a war against the demon.
Later, after returning Ayodhya, Ram extorted to ask Sita leave the kingdom, as his subjects doubt of Sita’s integrity. Being a king, Rama could have re-married, but instead, he chose not to marry and lived life with the memories of Sita.
Rama and Sita
Moral: Be loyal to your spouse and exhibit unconditional love.
On a brief note, Ramayana elucidates to perform our duties by incorporating virtue, integrity, modesty and righteousness as the managing factors in our lives.