Friday November 24, 2017

Siya Ke Ram: Distortions, lies, and mockery of Ramayana

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Photo: mtwiki.blogspot.com

By Nithin Sridhar

Last month, Star Plus, an entertainment channel in India, launched a new TV serial on the story of Lord Rama with much fanfare. The serial titled ‘Siya Ke Ram’ had promised to portray Ramayana from ‘Sita’s perspective’. Nikhil Sinha, the producer-director of the serial had further stated that the serial was well rooted in facts and based on the original story.

However, one month down the line, the serial appears to have taken wings of its own and deviated completely from the original text of Valmiki Ramayana. Moreover, the much-touted perspective of Sita is yet to emerge as well.

Though the serial at first had raised expectations of this writer with its VFX, soon it became clear that the serial has VFX alone without much substance or value to write about. The serial has not only distorted the original story, but has tried to impose modern secular-liberal values upon the Ramayana thereby making a complete mockery of the Hindu text which is not only considered as a true account of history (itihasa) in Hindu tradition but is also held in high respect and sacredness by millions of Hindus.

The very first episode began with portraying King Dasharatha and Queen Kausalya as crybabies, with the former always worrying about his sons, especially about Rama and the later mourning for her daughter- Shanta who was no longer with them. But a single reading of Valmiki Ramayana, which is the original text of Ramayana composed by Sage Valmiki, it becomes clear that neither the King nor the queen was portrayed as crybabies.

In fact, in the Bala-Khanda (11.2), King Dasharatha is described as being righteous, truthful, and resplendent. In other words, he was far from being a crybaby! The serial actually shows Dasharatha as grieving and longing for his sons when they were away from him for studying in Gurukula (traditional school). But, in all probabilities, the princes never went to any Gurukula and were trained in the palace itself. Valmiki Ramayana does not mention anything about sending them away. Instead, it says that Rama and the princes were well versed in Vedas, archery, and were always rendering service to their father (1.18.27,28, 36,37).

Now, coming to the issue of Kausalya’s grief and Shanta, this writer searched hard to find any reference for Queen Kausalya mourning over her daughter in the Valmiki Ramayana but was unable to find even a single reference to it.

Shanta with her husband Rishyasringa as portrayed in the serial. Photo: www.siyakram.in
Shanta with her husband Rishyasringa as portrayed in the serial. Photo: www.siyakram.in

The serial portrays Shanta as being the daughter of the Dasharatha and Kausalya, who was sent to seduce and marry Rishyasringa so that the Rishi can come and perform Putrakameshti Yajna for the begetting of Rama and other princes. Thus, the serial portrays how Dasharatha gave up his daughter for the sake of his sons. It further shows how Shanta was well accomplished in every way yet Dasharatha was never satisfied with her and hankered for a son. This hankering of Dasharatha resulted in Shanta being compelled to sacrifice her freedom and comforts and she went and lived in the forest with Rishyasringa. The serial further shows that this fact was initially kept hidden from Rama and other princes.

Now, let us look into what Valmiki Ramayana has to say about Shanta. Shanta was given in adoption to Romapaada, the King of Anga kingdom and a close friend of Dasharata. The adoption must have happened when Shanta was a child though no mention of her age during adoption is mentioned. But, it is clear that Shanta was brought up by Romapaada as his own daughter. Valmiki Ramayana mentions that when Romapaada’s kingdom was suffering from severe drought, he sent his courtesans to bring Rishyasringa to his kingdom (1.10.7).

When the Rishi arrived in his kingdom, the kingdom was showered with rains and later Romapaada gave Shanta’s hand in marriage to the Rishi (1.10.29-32). After marriage Shanta and Rishyasringa both lived in Anga kingdom itself (1.10.33) and not in the forest. Dasharatha later asked the help of Romapaada to request his son-in-law Rishyasringa to perform Putrakameshti Yajna so that Dasharatha can beget sons.

Therefore, from the Valmiki Ramayana, it becomes clear that Shanta was married to her husband according to the norms of those times and there was neither any compulsion nor any sacrifice on the part of Shanta nor did she undergo any suffering from the marriage. In fact, the Mahabharata account of the story of Shanta and Rishyasringa says that they both shared a loving relationship similar to Nala and Damayanti or Vashishta and Arundathi.

More importantly, Shanta was not sent to seduce Rishyashringa so that Dasharata can beget sons and thus there is absolutely no connection between Shanta marrying Rishyasringa and Rishyasringa helping Dasharatha in begetting sons.

So, the question that naturally arises is why did the serial distort the truth and impose notions of patriarchy and misogyny? Why was Shanta depicted as a victim? Why was Shanta used as a tool to depict supposed discrimination against daughters, or to depict how women are forced to make sacrifices when no such thing is actually recorded in the original text?

Patriarchy, misogyny, discrimination against daughters are all some of the trends that could be observed in current society. More importantly, these are the trends stressed in the left-liberal narratives of the society. On the other hand, Indic narrative is rooted in the all-encompassing concept of Dharma- duty and righteousness and all social trends- both good and bad- are analyzed from the Dharmic standpoint. The fact that the serial has distorted the original Dharmic narrative of Ramayana and has tried to superimpose social ills present in the current society and trends of current left-liberal narratives onto Ramayana, raises serious questions about the professionalism and the motives of the makers of this serial?

Further, Shanta’s story is not the only case of such distortions and super-impositions of left-liberal narratives. Consider the event of Ashwamedha Yajna (Horse-Sacrifice) portrayed in the serial. According to the serial, when King Dasharatha performs Ashwamedha Yajna, first Sita is shown as stopping the horse in its path, then Rama asserts that the horse should not be killed to complete the sacrifice and instead a golden idol of the horse should be used. Rama also makes a speech about animal rights and how traditions should be broken.

The whole narrative depicts not only the ignorance of the makers of the show about Hindu rituals, but also their agenda to superimpose modern narratives of animal rights on Hindu practices.

It is not that Dharmic perspective is insensitive to animal life. Hindu scriptures stipulate serving animals as one of the duties of householders (Bhuta-yajna). Hindu scriptures perceive animals as inseparable part of the Universe and teaches people to practice Ahimsa (non-injury). In fact, Manu Smriti (5.53) says that one who renounces consumption of eating meat attains spiritual benefit equal to that attained after conducting 100 Ashwamedha Yajnas.

At the same time, it must be remembered that Ashwamedha Yajna was performed for the overall welfare of the society- material, spiritual, and ecological. It served as a tool for the Kings to distribute their wealth among the poor and needy. The citizens were given in charity, whatever they were in need of. The landless got the lands, the house-less got the house, people in need of gold were given gold, etc. And the spiritual benefits derived from the Yajna is limitless and helps to enrich the spiritual atmosphere in the society. More importantly, the ritual is such that, the animals sacrificed in it not only attains heaven, but they also attain higher birth. It is for this reason, the sacrifice of animals in Yajnas is not considered as ‘Himsa’ (violence) as even the animals attain welfare.

Hence, according to Hinduism, sacrificing of animals in Yajnas that causes welfare of sacrificed animals as well is Dharma. On the other hand, modern activities like breeding animals for slaughtering or killing animals for their skin, etc. are considered unrighteous (Adharma) because there is no welfare of the animals.

First, the Ashwamedha Yajna shown in the serial never happened as far as Valmiki Ramayana is concerned. Valmiki Ramayana speaks about Dasharatha performing Horse-sacrifice along with Putrakameshti Yajna for begetting his sons. But, he does not perform any horse-sacrifice after the birth of his sons.

Second, even in the Ashwamedha Yajna that was conducted by Dasharatha before the birth of Rama, a real horse was sacrificed (1.14.32-36) and not a horse idol.

Sita with the Horse of Ashwamedha Yajna shown in the serial. Photo: www.pinkvilla.com
Sita with the Horse of Ashwamedha Yajna as shown in the serial. Photo: www.pinkvilla.com

Third, Sita is shown as stopping the horse without realizing the fact that whoever stops the horse and ties it, he/she must wage a war. Yet, in order to portray Sita as a rebel, the scene has been included in the serial.

Fourth, Valmiki Ramayana says Rama is a Dharma-Murti, the personification of Dharma. Thus, Rama very well knew that killing of the horse in the Yajna is not considered as Himsa/violence because the animal thus sacrificed attains spiritual and material welfare as well. Hence, Rama would never have called for a replacement of real horse with a horse idol based on shallow arguments not rooted in Dharma. But without understanding this nuance, the serial tries to give a lecture about the animal rights based on modern left-liberal narratives!

Fifth, the serial portrays Rishi Vashishta as calling Ashwamedha Yajna as a ‘pratha’ or a practice or a tradition based on common belief. But, the fact is Ashwamedha Yajna is not a ‘pratha’, it is a Dharmic practice given in Vedas themselves. So, there is no question about it being a simple matter of faith. It is a Dharmic obligation of the Kings for the welfare of his people. Though, it is true that sacrifice of animals during Yajnas has been prohibited in Kaliyuga according to some Dharmic texts because people no longer have the competency to properly perform those Yajnas and cause animals to attain higher birth. But, Lord Rama was not in Kali Yuga. He was in Treta-Yuga when there were hundreds of great Rishis like Vashishta, Rishyasringa etc. who were capable of performing even complex of Yajnas for the welfare of the world.

In other words, the whole events related to Ashwamedha Yajna shown in the serial is a fabrication introduced to distort the essence of Hindu rituals and superimpose left-liberal narratives about animal rights which incidentally is invoked only with respect to Hindu rituals and not in any other circumstances. (Remember Beef parties?).

Then there was the argument between Yajnavalkya and Gargi that ended up being a debate on love rather than being a sublime discussion about Brahman as shown in the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad. Also, the depiction of Gargi and the way Sunayana (Janak’s wife) speaks about her completely goes against the high respect Gargi actually held during that period. Then, the Rakshasas (demons) were portrayed as tribal people, which clearly is a colonial construction propagated by a few scholars. Hindu tradition itself considered Rakshasas as being different species than humans. Yet, the fight between Rama and Lakshmana duo and the Rakshasas headed by Maricha and Subhahu were depicted as a fight between the royal kings and tribal people! Maybe the makers of the serial are too much influenced by the Aryan invasion myth!

Rakshasas portrayed as tribal people in the serial. Photo: Google Plus
Rakshasas portrayed to resemble tribal people in the serial. Photo: Google Plus

There was also a conversation between Janak and his wife, wherein Sita’s mother is apprehensive about educating Sita and tells Janak, if Sita is educated, she will face numerous problems after marriage! Another clear attempt at superimposing the perceptions about girl education prevalent from last few centuries on Ramayana.

The events mentioned here are by no means exhaustive. There are many more such incidents and scenes portrayed in the serial which clearly betray attempts at imposing present social values on Ramayana, distortion of facts, and fabrication of lies.

In short, ‘Siya Ke Raam’ ends up making a complete mockery of Ramayana and Hindu practices. But the question is, will it take the moral responsibility for its distortions and mockery?

The serial starts with a disclaimer saying that the serial intends to hurt no religious sentiments, yet that is precisely what it is doing. It is distorting the facts of Valmiki Ramayana and fabricating events that are not present in it and more importantly, it is trying to discredit Hindu practices by superimposing elements from left-liberal worldview into the situations of Ramayana.

If the intentions of the serial makers were really genuine and they wanted to teach certain values to counter current problems, they could have made a completely new mythological serial something on the lines of Game of Thrones. Yet, again and again, the film and serial production industry take a short cut and produce serials that bear the name of historical or mythological characters for the sake of earning TRP, but without an iota of historical or mythological truths in them. This happened with Jodha Akbar serial in the past and it is happening now with ‘Siya ke Raam’.

The serial could have served a fantastic platform for imparting the Dharmic teachings inherent in the story of Valmiki Ramayana that would have helped the common people. Yet, the serial makers chose to reduce the whole effort into a distortion of Hinduism to propagate modern left-liberal narratives.

If this is not a mockery of Ramayana and Hinduism in the name of entertainment, then what is?

43 COMMENTS

  1. The
    media has, by and large, become the enemedia as far as Hindus are
    concerned. And all the people working on the serial they have no qualms
    about throwing their own heritage into the dustbin so long as they get
    paid. Which is the other problem, the Hindu
    disdain for their own culture. Legal routes are too time consuming to
    be effective and the disclaimer loophole is already there. Violent
    protests work but they are not an option, I really do not see what can
    be done except small candles like this in an enthusiastically welcomed
    darkness. The leftist are determined to attack everything Hindu and turn
    it to rubble.

  2. A lot of garbage on Indian tv channels do not surprise me at all. Indian TV, “intelligentsia” in collusion with leftists will be the cause of destruction of Bharat after Islamic rule and Colonial Europeans.

  3. Please read sita by devdutt pattanaik before posting such stuff. There are references not only to Ramayana as authored by Valmiki but countless others too.

  4. The intellectual honesty and the professionalism have been missing in current time story-tellers. There ignorance of dharmic ideas is clearly visible in their work, we need credible people in this field who do their work with utmost authenticuty.

  5. Dude, watch the serial – they say the story line is from Tulsi Ramayan. So what’s the point of comparing it with Valmiki Ramayan and drawing your conclusion. Research before you write.

  6. We have skipped watching the serial on ‘Siya Ke Ram’ which is clearly an attempt to twist the Ramayana to suit the PRESENT NEEDS of the so called secular Indians.

  7. Not a big fan of the serial however, what is right, is right. Please get yourself educated before lashing out in a full page rant.

    The serial does not claim to be based on Valmiki Ramayan alone. There are various versions of Ramayan. Please research your work before posting anything on a public forum.

    Perhaps, you can start here: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Versions_of_Ramayana

  8. JAI SRI RAM
    Thanks for this amazing article, indeed Rishishring was so innocent, he never saw a women in his life, the women’s who came to seduce him, she hugged rishi and took him to the Kingdom of King Romapaads…he took those women’s as a divine saints with wonderful bodies and their bodily features as he explains to his father, he never knew the difference between male and female, father warns him about demons in mayawi swarupa, however things works by Gods will and those women’s somehow takes rishi to the kingdom, assuming those women’s as rishis he sits in their cruise which looked like a palace, so huge with pools and huge houses indeed, he reaches the kingdom of King Romapaads. When his father comes to know. With anger he visits the kingdom…..all praja were been asked to glorify his father and rishi shring….he was happy and accepted the destiny. This is what even i heard from gurudev acc to valmiki ramayan.

    Even Ashwamedha yagya…those Horse also known as a Shyam karna, these specialised horse were born with one ear shyam/blackish coloured. They were given birth only and only for ashwamedhA yagya and not for riding. The horse after wandering the Akhanda bharata/entire bhumandal comes to the kingdom…tired, wounded due to so much of travelling….was then put in fire and he got a divine body, got liberated to higher specie of life or attain heavenly planet . It wasn’t himsa but dharma for chakravarti kings.

    Ramanand sagarjis Ramayan is very much authentic, can say around 90% as mentioned in Ramayan but bit incomplete but far much better then modern ramayan.

  9. You do know that there are other Ramayanas besides Valmiki Ramayana, right? And the makers have not stated anywhere that they are following Valmiki Ramayana. Though i agree that there is an absence of Sita’s perspective as touted but otherwise you cannot ask anybody to follow a mythological ‘truth’ in a ‘fictional’ serial.

    • Who told u Ramayana is myth. Its just a hear say people say. Its not a myth. The only mythological part about hindu scriptures is the the stories they make about ganesha etc. and that is only beacuse to teach something in very simple way. Rest is not Myth. The stories are called “Dant Kathaye”.

    • yes but when Hindus speak about Ramayana it is normally Valmiki Ramayana and Tulsidas Ramayana which is based on Valmiki as it is the original Ramayana

    • Please give some examples of other Ramayanas and how they are different from Valmiki Ramayana. Doesn’t matter which Ramayana they are following, it would be great for you to show which “other” Ramayana they are following. Ramayana was not written on “Patriarchal Ram’s” perspective as well. And it isn’t mythology.

  10. I like the serial… Its entertaining and informative. It inspired me to learn all about Lord Ram. I would like to read the Ramacharitamanas and develop my own perspective… thanks to the makers of Siya Ke Ram… period. Your article seems shallow. Please read the Ramayana by Valmiki and Tulsidas and then come up with a piece. Silly boy Nitin!

  11. Hi Nithin, I completely agree with u. The chracters are shown like they show in there saas bahu serials. The writers have absolutely no knowledge about charcters of rishis, dashrath, lakshman etc. Leave beside charater of Ram. I my view such serials should not be allowed to be made. As character of Ram is bigger than words and can only be realize through proper readings and knowledge of vedas. Leave beside ram I am frustrated the way they have shown Raavan. I mean he is Asur but he possess grate knowlege. He was considered as maha pandit of his time. The way they show him is like he is an idiot. Like movie villlians.
    Its just amazing how the whole hindu commmunity is stting and watching this show. And no body saying anything against it. Everytime I watch this serials I feel frustrated.
    Someone should file case against them. I am willing to support. I live in Canada, so can’t be physically there but. Willing to support the best I can.
    Varinder Singh

  12. Those mighty Asura’s, set out from Lanka LIKE THE GODS leaving Amaravati – Valmiki Ramayana ha ha you can depict Rama and his Vanara army as tribals too ha ha.

    Danava WHITE AS THE CLOUDS… Adi Parva. Davana was a branch of Asura. Kalayavana whose father was Brahmin was an asura too. See, Asura’s are not really dark ha ha.

  13. In mythology, if you think, the #1 Aryan should be Vaivasvata Manu, a south Indian king, the manu of current Manavantara ha ha.

  14. Ban the serial as it is giving distorted version and increasing the blood pressure of the ardent devotees of Sita and Ram

  15. where is the Sanjeevani Booti??
    and how come Garud Dev sucked the poison of Naag Baan. was the naag baan in the script ??
    and how come Lakshman as well as Raam were injured ?????
    total shit this is
    I am watching this serial to know what all situations Sita has gone through?? but here the whole Ramayana is deviated from its actual script. May Lord Raam forgive them.

  16. across India we see Lord Hanuman’s scrulpture carrying Sanjivini hill, where is this scene, and Shri Ram loosing his life to Indrajit!!?big joke! definately it got its own wings, change the name to ‘directors ke Ram’. worst serial w.r.t story narating, this will be hit becz of its graphics.

  17. nitin shridhar sir it is a great piece of article but one thing needs to be mentioned here that great vedic scholars such as maharishidayanandsaraswati and shripad damodar satvalekar have clearly stated that vedas do not sanction killing of harmless animals specially for yagya

  18. sir nitin shridhar it is a great piece of article but one thing needs to be added is that great vedic scholars Like mahrishidayanand saraswati and shripad damodar satvalekar have clearly stated that vedas do not sanction killing harmless animals specially for yagya

  19. Narrow-mindedness i sense in you Mr. Nithin.
    I Assume that you know that there are various versions of Ramayana and the Valmiki Ramayana was written centuries ago and is not the ‘original, unspoiled, pure, authentic’ text of Valmiki we read today. This serial takes into account many different versions of Ramayan and other texts containing information on Ramayan and its characters.(Like Mahabharat). And in episodes they do mention at bottom in hindi with significant font size that from where this was taken, only if the piece of story is too much unknown. Also the serial is based on Devdutt Pattnaik’s book.

    You must have heard of Amish Tripathi’s ‘Scion of Ikshvaku’. Just read that and I bet that you will surely criticize it for ‘reinventing the script, changing the story etc’. Just look at that book’s story, the author changed it so much that Dashrath ended up losing to Ravan in war and ostracizing Ram, yet the book gained positive reviews. Something similar does happen on Siya ke Ram but they potray it differently instead of twisting them completely like you said. Siya ke Ram gives the median/mean of all the important Ramayanas out there in India. Taking for example you point on ‘Rakshasas being tribal’. Ask people on what/who were vanaras. More than half would say ‘monkeys’, some would say ‘a forest tribe’. These are two different ideas on one concept. Now rakhasas are ‘other species’ or ‘humans/homo-neanderthals(another old now exticnt) human species who are totally against Dharma’ Being against Dharma and being anarchic their appearance looks like tribals. The serial shows how the events would have transpired that other versions of Ramayana show. The serial stays realistic and that’s why portrays differently.

    To the line “If this is not a mockery of Ramayana and Hinduism in the name of entertainment, then what is?” I have the answer, it is ‘a retelling of Ramayana, in a different way. Like other different Ramayanas its unique’ And I write this with the confidence that I have more than average knowledge on Hindu mythology (rather ancient Indian history) than an average ‘modern-Hindu’.
    Anonymous because hey narrow-mindedness tells people that a 14 y/o teenager cannot be so much well-informed about such things and like other kids is stupid and naive. (As a side note how many people know that there are 3 weapons of Lord Brahma and what each of them does and 14 realms/worlds in Hindu csomology. Few people i say) (Nevertheless i have given my real email if anone wants to check my knowledge)

  20. Narrow-mindedness i sense in you Mr. Nithin.
    I Assume that you know that there are various versions of Ramayana and the Valmiki Ramayana was written centuries ago and is not the ‘original, unspoiled, pure, authentic’ text of Valmiki we read today. This serial takes into account many different versions of Ramayan and other texts containing information on Ramayan and its characters.(Like Mahabharat). And in episodes they do mention at bottom in hindi with significant font size that from where this was taken, only if the piece of story is too much unknown. Also the serial is based on Devdutt Pattnaik’s book.
    You must have heard of Amish Tripathi’s ‘Scion of Ikshvaku’. Just read that and I bet that you will surely criticize it for ‘reinventing the script, changing the story etc’. Just look at that book’s story, the author changed it so much that Dashrath ended up losing to Ravan in war and ostracizing Ram, yet the book gained positive reviews. Something similar does happen on Siya ke Ram but they potray it differently instead of twisting them completely like you said. Siya ke Ram gives the median/mean of all the important Ramayanas out there in India. Taking for example you point on ‘Rakshasas being tribal’. Ask people on what/who were vanaras. More than half would say ‘monkeys’, some would say ‘a forest tribe’. These are two different ideas on one concept. Now rakhasas are ‘other species’ or ‘humans who are totally against Dharma’ Being against Dharma and being anarchic their appearance looks like tribals. The serial shows how the events would have transpired that other versions of Ramayana show. The serial stays realistic and that’s why portrays differently.
    To the line “If this is not a mockery of Ramayana and Hinduism in the name of entertainment, then what is?” I have the answer, it is ‘a retelling of Ramayana, in a different way. Like other different Ramayans its unique’ And I write this with the confidence that I have more than average knowledge on Hindu mythology (rather ancient Indian history) than an average ‘modern-Hindu’. Going anonymous because hey how common it is that a 14y/o is well informed about mythology. Old narrow-mindedness, kids are not supposed to know this much.

    • Need to learn more about rakshas Pichashis if learn sankrit. According to Bavishya purana Mohammad was Raskshasa. Rakshasar are evil humans. pishasha are cannibals. Vanaras are tribals and are with Rama.

  21. Why all this hue and cry? The serial clearly states that it is a work of fiction made purely for entertainment. Please learn to appreciate each one’s individuality.
    And I respect tradition and Valmiki but this is not Valmiki Ramayan. So go with an open mind.

  22. Siya Ke Ram: Distortions, lies, and mockery of Ramayana and hurting faith of Hinduism.

    The serial make a fun of character of sita while he showed Sita imprisoned by Ravan and insulted in Lanka wearing iron chain. Its not written any where in any Ramayana. May I know the source which The producer of the serial refering to this serial.
    Secondly There is no presentation no back ground music in serial as it was in Ramanand Sagar’s Ramayan made 30 yeare prior to this serial. Even there is no background prepared for the war. No story we ever heard about

    Tarini that Ravan had a son who was devote of Vishnu. Even sita did nothing While sitting under Ashoka and no body tries to meet her from Ravan’s Family. No story ever heard about Shurpnakha’a attempt to kill or insult Sita as it was shown in Siya ke Ram. War presentation is also very poor while the technology is more developed in 30 years. The war presentation 100 times much better in Ramanand Ragar’s Ramayan made before 30 years.
    There is also a fun of war between the great warrior Lakhsman and Meghnad. it was like two wrester were fighting aimlessly. There was no diolouge or devade in Meghnad and Lakshman. and no presentation of any kind of war, while Lakhaman & Meghnad war is the second most important war of Ramayan after Ram and Ravan. Lakshman and Meghnad seems to be fighting in mud like child not like warrior and mud therapy disguise there original appearance.
    The most important Scene of Meeting Vibhishaa and Hanuman was not shown in any episode. Even It was Hanuman who brought The God of Eagle to save Rama and Lakshmans. Here also a wrong story represented by Producer that Eagle came himself on calling of shiva. No Episode depict the story of Vibhishna’a coronation by Ram when they Build Rameshwaram Shiv-ling. Producer unnecessary focused much on Shurpnakha’s Character and 4 or 5 episode only to Punish Sita. While her role should be over after her nose was cut and complaint in front of Ravan’s for the same.
    May be Producer was follwin Star Plus tradition of Villain Lady character to take revenge or to feel jealous from other ladies. He might forgot that its a mythological story that should be presented in its real Form. Now a days the Main Characters Ram And Lakshman Seems to be carrying beard on their face. Did producer have seen anywhere Ram Lakshman’s such appearance in any picture. Over all he is just making a fun of Hindusim and trying to modernize the real story instead of its original form.

  23. Siya Ke Ram: Distortions, lies, and mockery of Ramayana and hurting faith of Hinduism.

    The serial make a fun of character of sita They showed Sita imprisoned by Ravan and insulted in Lanka wearing iron chain. Its a sin representating Maa Sita in such appearance. Its not written any where in any Ramayana. May I know the source which The producer of the serial referring to this serial.

    Producer also forgot to show that It was not the real sita who went Lanka. It was Maya Sita. Original Sita was hiden by Shri Ram in Custody of God of Fire. Ravan Couldn’t touch original Sita.

    Secondly There is no presentation no back ground music in serial as it was in Ramanand Sagar’s Ramayan made 30 years prior to this serial. Even there is no background prepared for the war. War Presentation and technology usded in iRamanand Sagar’s Ramaan is still very much ;popular and appreciable.Today WE had 3d and 4d technology however director and producer used very poor technology for war presentation

    No story we ever heard about Tarini that Ravan had a son who was devote of Vishnu. Even sita did nothing While sitting under Ashok Vatika and no body tries to meet her from Ravan’s Family. Sita did not eat anything in Lanka however Siya ke Ram showed that Sita met Mandodari many times and taught her cooking. Preparing Kheer for Her Father in Law’s Shard.
    No Story Even heard about Bhool Bulaiya Build by Ravan. No story ever heard about Shurpnakha’a attempt to kill or insult Sita as it was shown in Siya ke Ram. War presentation is also very poor while the technology is more developed in 30 years. The war presentation 100 times much better in Ramanand Ragar’s Ramayan made before 30 years. No Opening Songs no background music in war or anywhere in serial.

    There is also a fun of war between the great warrior Lakhsman and Meghnad. it was like two wrestler were fighting aimlessly. There was no dialogue or devade in Meghnad and Lakshman. and no presentation of any kind of war, while Lakhaman & Meghnad war is the second most important war of Ramayan after Ram and Ravan. Lakshman and Meghnad seems to be fighting in mud like child not like warrior and mud therapy disguise there original appearance. No story evr heard that Lakshman fight with Meghnad alone outside of war area. Only Meghnad keep Lakshman away from Hanuman because Hanuman can protect Lakshman from Amogh Sakhti.Even War duration and argument between warriors are nowhere is serial

    The most important Scene of Meeting Vibhishaa and Hanuman was noshown in any episode. Even It was Hanuman who brought The God of Eagle to save Rama and Lakshman. Here is also a wrong story represented by Producer that Eagle came himself on calling of Lord shiva. No Episode depict the story of Vibhishna’s coronation by Ram when they Build Rameshwaram Shiv-ling. Producer unnecessary focused much on Shurpnakha’s Character and 4 or 5 episode only to Punish Sita. While her role should be over after her nose was cut and complaint in front of Ravan’s for the same.
    May be Producer was following Star Plus tradition of Villain Lady character to take revenge or to feel jealous from other ladies. He might forgot that its a mythological story that should be presented in its real Form. Now a days the Main Characters Ram And Lakshman Seems to be carrying beard on their face. Did producer have seen anywhere Ram Lakshman’s such appearance in any picture. Over all he is just making a fun of Hinduism and trying to modernize the real story instead of its original form. In Today’s episode It was shown that Trijata Informed about Susain Vadh While in Ramcharit Manas and Valmiki Ramayan It was Vibhisana who Informed about Susan Vadh.

    It not only a wrong presentation of story but also a fun of Hinduism.

    • The Maya sita in you post is actually form a local version of Ramayana, so its up to to producer to take it or not. And if u say there is no background music then I suggest you to watch TV at loude volume or check ur speaker settings.

  24. Somebody has to file PIL to stop this leftist/evangelicals mockery of Ramayana?

  25. awesomely said bro .. not only this . there has come many books like shiva trilogy , maha vishnu trilogy , ramachandra series etc .. where the writers are writing on their own about our gods . sad thing is that they are hailed by our youth stating that they are of a different perspective !!

  26. I found the dialogues in too much pathetic Hindi. Seems like planned mockery of Hinduism.

    Examples are: Sooryasta being pronounced as Sooryastra,
    Pavanputra as Pavandoot
    Gyat and Gyan used interchangeably
    Yog Shakti used as Yogya Shakti
    and countless others.

    From so many mistakes which I could figure out, I can’t imagine that the directors could not get those. Either they were in too much hurry while making serials or it’s clear cut conspiracy to defame Hinduism with wrongful Hindi dialogues.

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Ever Wondered what do Ancient Sites mentioned in Ramayana look like? Visit these Ramayana Destinations to know!

Visit these Ramayana destinations the first chance you get, to feel closer to your roots.

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Ramayana is not just a story, it is a way of life which has been guiding believers and non-believers for centuries about the right way to live on this planet. Wikimedia

New Delhi, November 8, 2017 : Ramayana is not just a story, it is a way of life which has been guiding believers and non-believers for centuries about the right way to live on this planet. I can confidently vouch that we have all heard stories from Ramayana at one point in our life. Ramayana is not just a story, it is an indispensable part of the Hindu religious law.

There exist innumerable arguments questioning the authenticity of Ramayana. While it is almost impossible to prove or disapprove anything, what is feasible is to trace the chronology of events, focusing on various Ramayana destinations that can still be visited to experience the ethereal world that is believed to have existed in the Treta Yug.

Here is a list of ancient sites mentioned in Ramayana.

You can plan a trip to these Ramayana destinations to feel closer to Him, and personally experience what we have all grown up reading and hearing about.

  1. Janakpur

Mention in Ramayana

First on our list of Ramayana destinations is Janakpur. A key phase took place at Janakpur, one of the many other Ramayana destinations. The ancient city of Mithila, as it was previously called, was home to Sita, where she lived till her marriage.

Legend has it that to get rid of a devastating drought, the King of Janak ploughed the land in Janakpur when he stumbled upon an earthen pot out of which Sita emerged. This also explains why the place is also known as Sitamarhi.

King Janak brought the child back to the palace at Mithila, where she grew up and was married to Ram.

The Ramayana explains Mithila as a ‘divya-bhumi’, a sacred land that pulled Ram to it.

Visiting Janakpur

A small town in Nepal, you are sure to come across compelling stories of Sita (or Janaki) infused in the landscapes, temples and the people of Janakpur.

Sita’s  swayamvar, the ceremony which saw participation of learned men from all big and small territories, took place at Rangbhoomi. It was in this ceremony that Shiva’s bow was broken into pieces by Ram.

Dhanush Sagar is a tank on the area where a piece of the bow of Shiva, broken by Ram in an attempt to win Sita’s hand, had fallen. Another piece is believed to have fallen at some distance, now known by the name Ratan Sagar. And the third piece is believed to have fallen in Dhanusha, 15 km away from Janakpur.

Ramayana destinations
Dhanush Sagar in Nepal. Wikimedia

Visitors can also visit the Ram-Sita vivah mandapa, which has been made in Janakpur.

Multiple devotees flock Janakpur every year o pray and pay homage to Sita during Vivah Panchami, the day Ram and Sita are believed to have got married. The quaint little town also witnesses tourists on Ram Navami, the birthday of Lord Ram.

How To Reach Janakpur

Janakpur is one of the ancient sites mentioned in Ramayana, only a few km from the Indian border and can be reached by flight, train or via road.

Travelers can fly to Kathmandu and take a smaller airline to Janakpur. However, make sure you check flight availability beforehand as they only ply a few times in a week.

Otherwise, one can also visit Janakpur via buses.

  1. Chitrakoot

Mention in Ramayana

Next on our list of Ramayana destinations is Chitrakoot. It is one of the most intricately explained Ramayana destinations. Upon being banished from the royal palace, it was here that Lord Ram, accompanied by wife Sita and brother Lakshmana spent eleven of their 14 years of exile (vanvas).

Ramayana also mentions of Bharat who came to Chitrakoot to persuade his brother Ram to return to Ayodhya. It was also here that Ram performed the last rites of his father, King Dasharatha in presence of all gods and goddesses.

Chitrakoot’s peaceful environment also acted as a source of inspiration for the great poet Goswami Tulsidas to pen the Ramcharitmanas, retelling the life of Lord Ram in Awadhi.

Visiting Chitrakoot

Nestled between the borders of Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh, Chitrakoot has a breathtaking location with a tranquil aura.

Quick fact : ‘Chitra’ means a beautiful painting and ‘Kuta’ means mountains.

While all ancient sites mentioned in Ramayana hold spiritual transcendence, located along the Mandakini River, the sacred city of Chitrakoot is particularly known as a centre for spiritual enlightenment, and is a potpourri of devotion, legend and traditions.

Pilgrims can visit the Bharat Milap Mandir, where Bharat visited elder brother Ramand requested him to return to Ayodhya to claim his rightful throne. Upon his refusal, Bharat took his khadau (slippers) with him to the palace to place on the throne until Ram returned to the kingdom after 14 years.

Located on the Kamdagiri Hills near the temple premise, there exist engraved footprints of Ram and his brothers that are worshipped till date.

Located at the centre of the town is Ramghat where Ram used to take a dip in the mighty Mandakini river. This also happens to be the place where Tulsidas met Ram and Lakshmana.

Ramayana destinations
Ramghat in Chitrakoot. Wikimedia

Legend has it that Tulsidas was making sandalwood paste when the two brothers disguised as two kids approached him and asked him to apply a tilak on their forehead too. Not knowing the boys were really God, the poet made the tilak. It was Hanuman who helped Tulsidas recognize the brothers by reciting the famous verse,

“Chitrakoot ke ghaat pai bhai santan ki bheer,

Tulsidas chandan ghise tilak det Raghubeer.”

One can also visit the Gupt Godavari caves at a distance of 18 km, where inside the saves stand two natural throne-like rocks where Ram and Lakshmana sat during their stay.

How To Reach Chitrakoot

You can take a flight to Khajuraho, from where buses and taxis operate. The nearest railway station is Chitrakoot Dham. You can also choose to take the road to reach Chitrakoot.

3. Panchvati, Nasik

Mention in Ramayana

Third on our list of Ramayana destinations is Nasik. During his exile years, Lord Rama, accompanied by Sita and Lakshmana moved from one place to another, to find tranquility in nature and feel closer to the natural way of life. After staying in Chitrakoot for eleven years, the next Ramayana destination was Nasik where they spent a significant amount of time.

Their hut was built in Panchvati, which is famous for its five huge Banyan trees and is only 4 km away from Nasik.

Located on the banks of the Godavari, it was in Nasik that Lord Rama and Lakshmana had an encounter with Surpanakha, Ravana’s younger sister, where consequently her nose was cut off. This explains the rationale behind the name of the place. (Nasika means nose in Sanskrit)

To avenge the disrespect faced by his sister, it was from here that Ravana abducted Sita and flew her to Lanka on his Pushpak Vimaan. Needless to say, it was here where Lakshmana drew the ‘Lakshmana Rekha’,.

Visiting Nasik

The Kala Ram Mandir in Panchvati, Nasik is believed to have been built right where Lord Rama’s kuti (hut) was built.

Ramayana destinations
Kalaram temple in Nasik. Wikimedia

Nasik’s Rama Kunda is the chief pilgrimage place in Nasik. The Kunda is primarily a tank where Lord Rama and Sita allegedly bathe. This makes the tank extremely sacred.

The Rama Kund is also known Asthi Vilaya Tirtha, because human bones are known to dissolve here. Legend has it that Lord Rama performed funeral rites at the Kund in memory of His deceased father, King Dasharatha.

How To Reach Nasik

Nasik is very well connected via air, trains and road.

Panchvati is only 4.2 km away from Nasik and can be easily reached through road.

4. Kishkindha, Hampi

Mention in Ramayana

Next on our list of Ramayana destinations is Kishkindha. Marked by dense forests, huge rocks and the Tungabhadra river, Karnataka’s Hampi can be mapped to Ramayana’s Kishkindha, one of the most active Ramayana destinations.

In the forests of Dandak, Kishkindha was the kingdom of the Vanara king Bali.

It was in the forests of Kishkindha where Lord Rama met Hanuman.

After Sita was abducted by Ravana, Lord Ram had first entered the kingdom of apes looking for her, along with Lakshmana.

After a fight between the two monkey kings, Sugriva and Bali, Sugriva took refuge on the Matanga mountain along with Hanuman. Lord Rama had killed Bali and helped Sugriva win the throne. The brothers then stayed in Kishkindha awaiting results of Hanuman’s search for Sita.

Sugriva’s army of apes also pledged their support to Lord Ram here and hence came into being his army against Ravana.

Visiting Kishkindha

Ramayana clearly traces the roots of Kishkindha to the Tungabhadra river, which till date is counted among some of the major rivers of Karnataka.

One of the many ancient sites mentioned in Ramayana, the region along the river near Hampi in Karnataka is identified as Kishkindha from Ramayana.

Ramayana destinations
Kishkindha mountain. Wikimedia

Hampi has a culturally rich past and has much more to offer to visitors. However, for those of you looking to trace Ramayana’s trajectory, this place will not disappoint you.

Tara Mountain near Hampi is named after Bali’s wife, who had been saved by the monkey kind from demons.

As per Ramayana, Sugriva had taken refuge inside the Rishyamuk mountain. Legend has it that Bali had been cursed by a saint, who said the monkey king would perish if he entered the mountain. Thus, to save his life, Sugriva took refuge inside this mountain.

Pilgrims can also visit Nidapuram where a huge mound of scorched ash remains and is believed to be the cremated remains of Bali.

A little to the north-west lie the Anjanadri mountain, which is believed to be the birthplace of Lord Hanuman, who lived here with his parents, Kesari and Anjani.

The mountain has been named after Hanuman himself, who was called Anjaneya.

Quick fact : You will have to climb 550 stairs to reach to the ancient Hanuman temple situated on this mountain.

How To Reach Kishkindha

Hampi is at a distance of 330 km from Goa and can make for a comfortable road trip. The nearest railway station is Hospet Junction which is merely 13 km away. The station is well connected with trains, and roads. You can also avail the bus services by Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation

While it cannot be confirmed that everything we know about Ramayana took place as we know of it. However, these Ramayana destinations continue to exist till date and prove that they may just have transpired in reality.

Visit these Ramayana destinations the first chance you get, to feel closer to your roots.

 

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Sins in Hinduism: Facts, Meaning,Philosophy,Types & Atonement

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The sins in Hinduism can be washed away with devotional means. Pixabay.
  • Sin is regarded as an impurity arising in one’s body as a consequence to his own evil deeds. It is an effect that can be neutralised through various practices to lead your life into Moksha or liberation.
  • A liberated being or Jivanmukta is purified of all his sins who does not have to go through any further sins and rebirth. In order to make your soul pure and sinless, practice every deed with God’s grace.
  • The Sins in Hinduism, sinful conduct and their remedies have been referred to in Hindu Scriptures such as in Upanishads, Bhagavadgita, Yoga Sutras, Manu Smriti and Garuda Purana. 

As stated about sins in Hinduism, sin may form up with disobedience to God’s divine laws of Dharma. It may however be difficult to follow, but is considered obligatory for humans. The sins in Hinduism can be forgiven if Dharma is upholded as a service to God through self-effort and pure devotion to God.

Sins in Hinduism
Meditation is considered as the easiest from of removing sins in Hinduism. Pixabay.

What is the meaning of Sins in Hinduism?

The word Pāpam (paap) is often used to describe sins in Hinduism as mentioned in the Vedas and Hindu scriptures. Punyam (punya) is the opposite (antonym) of sin. It does not acquire an equivalent word in English since the concept of sins in Hinduism is different in western culture and Christianity.

Separating the word, ‘Pa‘ means to drink, inhale or absorb. ‘Apa‘ means water, combinedly meaning consuming or drinking impure water or poison. Pāpam also denotes evil, wicked, mischievous, destructive, inferior, corrupt and guilt.

It is believed that the sins of Hinduism manifests in the body with the impurities of worldliness (vishaya-asakti). The human body becomes subject to various poisons (visham) such as egoism, greed, ignorance, selfishness, desires and so on, which emerge with our attachments with worldly things (vishayas). These poisons of sins make the humans to take rebirths and deaths until they are removed completely. In the Hindu culture, Lord Shiva is regarded as the destroyer and the healer who gets invoked by devotees prayers and can remove or destroy such poison or sins to grant them liberation.

Sins in Hinduism
The sins in hinduism have been depicted in the scriptures. Pixabay.

What is the Philosophy of Sins in Hinduism?

The sins appear from physical, mental or oral actions, due to the impurities or poisons pertaining to Dharma and Hinduism. The poison of sin is stimulated if one harms intentionally to others or oneself by way of pain and suffering continuing the cycle of rebirth and death.

The repurcussions of sinful acts or karma are fault or mistake (aparadha), worry or anxiety (cintha), impurities or imperfections (doshas), evil intentions (dudhi), evil qualities (dhurta lakshana), immorality (adharma), demonic nature (asura sampatti), chaos or disorderliness (anrta), mental afflictions (klesha), destruction (nirtti), karmic debt (rna), sorrow (shoka), darkness or grossness (tamas) and suffering (pida). Others include: inferior birth, birth through demonic wombs, downfall into hells, increased suffering to ancestors, adversity, loss of reputation.

Sins in Hinduism
Visit Pilgrimage shrines to erase your sins in Hindusim. Pixabay.

What are the types of Sins in Hinduism?

The Dharmashastras of the Hindu scriptures denote sin as Pātaka which represents the causes of one’s downfall or destruction (patanam).The following are the three types of sins in Hinduism: Mortal Sins (Mahapatakas), Secondary Sins (Upa Patakas) and Minor Sins (Prakirna or prasangika Patakas)

The Mahapatakas

These are the gravest and darkest sins in Hinduism leading to the worst downfall of the mortals into the darkest of hells. They can neither be neutralized or washed away without suffering. Some Puranas and Vedas indicate to devote oneself purely to God to remove such sins. The Dharmashastras have stated such five gravest sins termed as the Pancha Mahapatakas. In Hinduism,the company of sinners is also not advisable as associating with sinners will lead you to the same consequences.

The Upa Patakas

These secondary sins may emerge out of minor offenses that include incompetency to perform sacrifices regularly, displeasing the Guru, selling harmful and intoxicating drinks, disbelief in God, giving false witness, making false acclaims, and performing a sacrifice for an unworthy person or unworthy cause and engaging in illicit sex.

The Prakirna Patakas

These type of sins in Hinduism form the minor offenses committed intentionally or unintentionally out of ignorance or carelessness which can be removed or washed away by performing sacrifices (prayaschitta) or by punishments and requesting forgiveness. The law books regard more than fifty minor sins in Hinduism such as selling the wife, making salt, studying forbidden Shastras, killing a woman, marrying the younger son before marrying the elder one, killing insects and other creatures, ignorance to parents, accepting gifts without performing sacrifices,adultery etc.

What are the solutions to overcome Sins?

Fines and punishments

The Dharmashastras render both corporeal and monetary punishments for various offenses or sins in Hinduism, apart from the sufferings in hell or rebirth. According to Hindu scriptures, the ancient era saw immense difference in the application of punishments from caste to caste.

Confession

The best path to deal with sins of Hinduism is to surrender yourself infront of God and seek forgiveness with your own confession of the sin committed. The king was regarded as a similar figure to God who demanded a public confession (abhishasta) from the sinner.

Austerities and Atonement

By performing Vedic traditional rituals, the sins in Hinduism are removed by fasting, virtuous conduct, self-control, practice of nonviolence, truthfulness, austere living, practice of silence, concentration and meditation.

Sins in Hinduism
Your sins in Hinduism can be removed by Devoting yourself to the grace of God. Pixabay.

Rituals and sacrifices

The Vedas have recommended various rituals or sacrifices to wash away the the impurities (dhosas) arising from one’s birth, karma, relationships, place or direction related issues, vastu defects, dangerous diseases and evil conduct.

Prayers and Mantras

Vishnu Purana of the Hindu scriptures pronounce the effective importance of the continuous chanting of names of God (japam) in the Kaliyug. Some mantras and hymns are considered more significant than meditation and sacrifices to clean the impurities of the body.

Recitation of the Vedas and other Sacred Books

Knowledge (jnana) has the eternal power to remove the sins in Hinduism. It can be derived with regular reading up and learning from the scriptures of sacred importance.

Visiting pilgrimages

To grant your devotion and gratitude, Hinduism seeks to commit to Dharma by visiting holy pilgrimage place. It is a divine form of self-cleansing and experiencing peace and happiness.

Bathing in the sacred rivers

The sacred pilgrimages are mostly located near the banks of the rivers that are also treated as purifiers. Hence, bathing in those rivers lead your life into devotional worship as a purification rituals to overcome sins in Hinduism.

Yoga and Meditation

Pranayama and meditation are the suggested methods to practise peace and overcome past sins. They also form a major part of the austerities to cleanse the internal mind and body.

The blessings of saints and gurus

Saints, sadhus and mahatmas have been given a special status in Hinduism because of their respectful purity and virtue. They acquire divine knowledge and supreme powers, with which they cleanse those who approach them for blessings.

Sins in Hinduism
Worshipping the saints remove the sins in hinduism. Pixabay.

Virtuous conduct

Sinful karma can be countered with huge efforts into virtuous karma. The sins in Hinduism are washed away with kind and healthy conduct to everyone equally.

Charity

Dana (gift giving) or charity is very significant in Hindu Dharma. By conducting sacrifices and spiritual practices one must conduct charity as well. As a part of Vedas, the higher castes are under obligation to perform five daily sacrifices including offer food to gods, ancestors, sages, humans and creatures.

-Prepared by Bhavana Rathi of NewsGram. Twitter @tweet_bhavana

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Hinduism is Not an Official or Preferred Religion in Any Country of The World, Says a New Report

Though Hinduism is the third largest religion of the world, it is not the official state religion of any country according to a Pew Research Center Report

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Hinduism is not an official religion of any country in the world. Instagram.
  • No country has declared Hinduism as its official state religion – despite India being an influential Hindu political party
  • Hinduism is not an official or preferred religion in any country of the world, according to a Pew Research Center report.
  • 53% of 199 nations considered in the study don’t have an official religion
  • 80 countries are assigned either an “official religion” or “preferred religion”

Nevada, USA, October 16: Hinduism is the primeval and third largest religion of the world with about 1.1 billion followers of moksh (liberation) being its utmost desire of life. India is among the category of nations where the government do not have an official or preferred religion.

Pew Research Center is a nonpartisan fact tank headquartered in Washington DC that aims to inform the public about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping America and the world.

The report states that a country’s official religion is regarded as a legacy of its past and present privileges granted by the state. And a few other countries fall on the other side of the gamut, and propagate their religion as the ‘official religion’, making it a compulsion for all citizens.

It adds up on the context of allocation that more than eight-in-ten countries (86%) provide financial support or resources for religious education programs and religious schools that tend to benefit the official religion.

Hinduism
Islam is the most practiced official religion of the world. Instagram.

Commenting on Hinduism, the report states:

In 2015, Nepal came close to enshrining Hinduism, but got rejected of a constitutional amendment due to a conflict between pro-Hindu protesters and state police.

Although India has no official or preferred religion as mentioned in the Constitution,it was found by PEW that in India the intensity of government constraints and social antagonism involving religion was at a peak. “Nigeria, India, Russia, Pakistan and Egypt had the highest levels of social hostilities involving religion among the 25 most populous countries in 2015. All fell into the “very high” hostilities category,” the report added.

As per the 2011 census, it was found that 79.8% of the Indian population idealizes Hinduism and 14.2% practices to Islam, while the rest 6% pursuit other religions.

While Hinduism stands up with the majority, Article 25 of the Constitution of India contributes secularism allowing for religious freedom and allows every Indian to practice his/her religion, without any intervention by the community or the government.

Distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, President of Universal Society of Hinduism, applauded the Hindu community for their benefaction to the society and advised Hindus to concentrate on inner purity, attract spirituality towards youth and children, stay far from the greed, and always keep God in the life.

According to Pew, these are “places where government officials seek to control worship practices, public expressions of religion and political activity by religious groups”.

-by Bhavana Rathi of NewsGram.  She can be reached @tweet_bhavana