Monthly Archives: January 2016

The story of Devi Sita

Devi Sita, consort of Lord Rama was known for her dedication, self sacrifice, courage and purity. She is one of the main characters of Ramayana- a famous Hindu epic.She was a adopted daughter of King Janak of Mithila and Queen Sunanya. She was considered as an incarnation of Goddess Lakshmi.

Legend of Sita’s Birth

Sita was found in a furrow while ploughing the field. King Janaka has no children of his own so when he saw Sita, he was overwhelmed with love for her and declared her his own daughter.

Thus she is considered as daughter of Bhumidevi or Goddess Earth. Also, she was adopted daughter of King Janak so she was also known as Janaki. King Janaka was ruler of Mithila hence Sita was also known as Mythili. King Janak was also known as Videha hence, Sita was also known as Vaidehi.

 

Sita’s marriage

When Sita was a little girl, Sage Parashuram saw her playing with Bow of Lord Shiva. He advised Janaka to marry Sita with the man who lifts the Lord Shiva’s bow (Pinaka) and able to string it.

When right time arrived, Janaka organised a swayamwara with a condition that Sita will marry only that person who would be able to string Pinaka, the bow of Lord Shiva.

Many Princes and Kings tried their luck but failed to even move the bow. To the utter surprise of all, Rama not only lifted the bow with an ease string it and finally broke it.

Thus on fulfilling the condition Ram got married to Sita.

Sita weds Ram

Sita weds Ram

Exile

Some time after wedding, Kaikeyi (stepmother of Rama) forced Dasharatha to crown Bharat as King and send Rama to forest for fourteen years. Sita and Lakshman willingly renounced the comfort of palace and joined Rama in exile. Dasharatha in utter guilt and grief died by the next day.

Sita and Ram in forest

Sita and Ram in forest

Sita’s Abduction

Rama, Sita and Lakshmana were spending their time peacefully in the forest of Dandaka (later known as Panchwati). One day, Sita saw a golden deer she was charmed and asked Rama to catch it.

Golden deer was actually a demon who was sent by Ravana to lure Rama and Lakshmana away from hermitage so that Ravana could abduct Sita.

When Rama went in the forest in search for dear he ordered Lakshmana not to leave Sita alone in any circumstances. When Rama killed the deer- Mareech imitated Rama’s voice and cried for help. In Spite of Lakshmana refusal to leave Sita alone, she forced him to go and help his brother Rama.

Ravana in disguise of Sage

Ravana in disguise of Sage

Before leaving Lakshmana took his arrow and made a  line(Lakshmana rekha) and asked Sita not to step out of it in any circumstances.

When Sita was all alone in the hut, Ravana disguised as sadhu came for alms. The moment Sta crossed Lakshman rekha to give alm Ravana came in his original form and abducted Sita on his aerial chariot.

When Rama and Lakshmana came back they find Sita missing . They started searching for her. Deep in the forest they saw Jatayu, who was badly wounded. Jatayu said he saw Ravana forcefully taking away  Sita, when he tried to rescue her Ravana cut his wings. Then Jatayu took his last breath.

Jatayu fights with Ravana

Jatayu and Ravana – Aranya Kanda

The whole story of exile is available at Aranya Kand.

Sita in Ashok van

Ravana took Sita to Lanka and kept her in Ashok van. Ravana appointed many demonesses to take care of Sita and prevent her from escaping.  During her captivity for a year in Lanka, Ravana keep expressing his desire for her, but Sita refused his advances and struggled to maintain her chastity

Meanwhile Rama meets Hanuman and his Vanara sena and made plan to rescue Sita.

Sita in Ashokvan

Sita in Ashokvan

Ram wages war against Ravana

Rama with the help of vanara sena build a bridge- Ram Setu connecting India and Lanka. Rama waged a war against Ravana. Finally, Sita was rescued by defeating Ravana.

Rama and Ravana - The Ramayana

Rama and Ravana – The Ramayana

Sita’s Agnipariksha

Since Sita was kept in captivity by Ravana she had to give  a agnipariksha in order to prove her chastity.

In some version of Ramayana , during this test Fire God Agni appeared before Rama and handed over him real Sita and said it was Maya Sita who was abducted by Ravana.

While other version states that Sita voluntarily enters the fire, and when she stepped in the coal turned into lotuses.

Sita agnipariksha

Sita agnipariksha

Abandonment of Sita

Couple came back to Ayodhya, Rama was crowned king. Ram’s faith and affection for Sita has never wavered but some people of Ayodhaya could not accept Sita after her long captivity. Rama being a noble king had to listen to his praja and send Sita off into exile once again.

Later life of Sita

Abandoned Sita was pregnant  she wandered in the forest and finally got shelter in the hermitage of sage Valmiki.  She gave birth to twins, Kusha and Lava. Sita raised her sons all alone under the guidance of sage Valmiki. Twins grew into brave and intelligent princes. When Lava and Kusha were united with their father Rama, Sita considered her mission complete and decided to take final refuge in the arms of her mother Bhumi.

Sita with Luv and Kush

Sita with Luv and Kush

Sita requested  Bhumi devi to have mercy on her and give her release from unjust world and sadness filled life. The earth suddenly split open and Bhumi devi emerge from inside and took Sita away with her.

This was the extraordinary life of Devi Sita. Who went to the forest with her husband only to be denounced later. Even she passed the test of Agnipariksha. Who says our society is matured?

Read about unknown facts of Ramayana

An interesting narration of Dashavatara and evolution

Dashavatara and Evolution

Read the following interesting conversation between a mother and the son which relates to Dashavatara.

Things were going exactly as Srinivasan had feared, his Mother would come in from India and crush his American way of life under her strong South Indian influence. For a genetic scientist like Vasu, as Srinivasan was called by his friends, the only kind of order was disorder. So consumed he was by his research that the world and it’s affairs mattered little to him. When his last girlfriend walked out on him, “Find a girl on planet Srinivasan,” she had screamed as she stomped out.

Now Vasu’s Mother had taken over the administration of the planet. It irritated him, this milk at night and chywanprash every morning. “Have you been wearing the same pair of Jeans for the past three days?” Mother was beginning her morning interrogation.

Dashavatar of Lord Vishnu - Indian mythology

Dashavatar of Lord Vishnu – Indian mythology

Vasu stared at the hot idlis in front of him, the chywanprash to follow and the wardrobe interrogation that had begun. Something snapped in his mind. “Mom I love you and I love that you come all the way from India to take care of me but plesse don’t fuss over me! It irritates me! And then I cannot work!”

His Mother did not really care if Vasu was upset, “The idlis are getting cold,” was her matter of fact response.

“You don’t really care, do you Mom?”

“I care about you Vasu. The work you do is alright. If you don’t do it, someone else will do it.”

“Mom, I am genetic scientist. I am working on the evolution of man. Theory of evolution, Charles Darwin, have you heard of him? ” Vasu was exasperated with her unwillingness to understand. His Mother sat down next to him and smiled, “I know Darwin, Vasu. I also know that what you think he discovered was old news in India.”

” Yeah sure Mom!” Vasu said with sarcasm.

“Well if you are too smart then listen to this, ” his Mother countered.” Have you heard of Dashavatar? The ten avatars of Vishnu?” Vasu nodded. “Then let me tell you what you and Mr. Darwin don’t know. The first avatar was the Matsya avatar, it means the fish. That is because life began in the water. Is that not right?” Vasu began to listen with a little more attention.

“Then came the Kurma Avatar, which means the tortoise, cause life moved from the water to the land. The amphibian. So the Tortoise denoted the evolution from sea to land. Third was the Varaha, the wild boar, which meant the wild animals with not much intellect, you call them the Dinosaurs, correct? ” Vasu nodded wide eyed.

“The fourth avatar was the Narasimha avatar, half man and half animal, the evolution from wild animals to intelligent beings. Fifth the Waman avatar, the midget or dwarf, who could grow really tall. Do you know why that is? Cause there were two kinds of humans, Homo Erectus and the Homo Sapiens and Homo Sapiens won that battle.” Vasu could see that his Mother was in full flow and he was stupefied.

“The Sixth avatar was Parshuram, the man who wielded the axe, the man who was a cave and forest dweller. Angry, and not social but the seventh avatar was Ram, the first thinking social being, who laid out the laws of society and the basis of all relationships. The eight avatar was Krishna, the statesman, the politician, the lover who played the game of society and taught how to live and thrive in the social structure. The Ninth avatar, the Buddha, the man who rose from Narasimha and found man’s true nature. The nature of Buddha, he identified man’s final quest of enlightenment. And finally, my boy, will come Kalki, the man you are working on. The man who will be genetically supreme.”

Vasu looked at his Mother speechless. “This is amazing Mom, how did you.. This makes sense!”

“Yes it does Vasu! Now have your chyawanprash! “

Jambavant – One of seven immortals – Sat Chiranjeevi

In Indian mythology, there are seven immortals, who are also known as Sat Chiranjeevi. These characters are integral to Indian mythology and Jambavant is believed to longest living entity.

Jambavant

Jambavant is a famous character in Indian mythology. He is believed to be created by Brahma to help Rama fight Ravana. He is also an immortal entity. His presence is found at number of places, in the times of Rama, Shri Krishna and Bali. He was also present at the time of churning pf ocean.

Jambavant advises Hanuman - Ramayana

Jambavant advises Hanuman – Ramayana

Jambavant in his previous life was the King of the Himalayas who had incarnated as a bear in order to serve Lord Rama. He received a boon from Lord Rama that he would have a long life, and have the strength of ten million lions. In the epic Ramayana, Jambavantha helped Rama find his wife Sita and fight her abductor,Ravana. It is he who makes Hanuman realize his immense capabilities and encourages him to fly across the ocean to search for Sita in Lanka. In the Mahabharata, Jambavantha had killed a lion, who had acquired a gem called Syamantaka from Prasena after killing him. Krishna was suspected of killing Prasena for the jewel, so he tracked Prasena’s steps until he learned that he had been killed by a lion who had been killed by a bear. Krishna tracked Jambavantha to his cave and a fight ensued. After eighteen days, realizing who Krishna was, Jambavantha submitted. He gave Krishna the gem and also presented him his daughter Jambavati, who became one of Krishna’s wives.

Jambavantha and Shri Krishna

Jambavantha and Shri Krishna

Jambavant, together with Parasuram and Hanuman, is considered to be one of the few to have been present for both Ram and Krishna avatars. Said to have been present for the churning of the ocean and thus witness to the Kurma avatar, and further the Vaman avatar, Jambavan may well be the longest lived of the chiranjivis and have been witness to nine avatars.

 

Om Sarva Mangala Mangalaye

Sarva Mangal Mangalye – The Mantra of Devi Durga

Devi Durga mantra

The most chanted mantra of Maa Durga is following. The meaning of this mantra is as following.

Sarva-Mangala-Maangalye Shive Sarvaatha-Saadhike I
Sharanye Trayambake Gauri Narayani Namostute II

Meaning:
We bow to you O Devi Narayani. You are the the auspicious for everyone, you bring happiness . You are the one who completes every work for everyone. You are protecter of everyone.
You are the one with 3 eyes and a beautiful face; We salute you, O Narayani.

Om Sarva Mangala Mangalaye

Om Sarva Mangala Mangalaye

 

Maa Parvati