Created between the 17th and 19th centuries for the Rajput and Pahari courts of north India, a selection of 30 paintings depicting the Ramayana will go on a year-long exhibition at The Met, America’s prestigious museum.
The upcoming exhibition will begin on August 10 at its South Asian Exhibition Gallery here. Its focus will be on one of the major epic narratives of Indian and South Asian literature, the Ramayana, composed by the Sanskrit poet Valmiki around the 5th century BC.
Drawn largely from The Met’s collection, the show titled “Sita and Rama: The Ramayana in Indian Painting” will showcase 30 paintings that narrate the heroic and adventurous tale of Rama’s rescue of his wife.
The paintings and textiles that will be on view capture the collective visual imagination of court artists in their efforts to give form to the 2,500-year-old Sanskrit narrative, which consists of more than 24,000 verses. Highlights of the exhibition include a rare 19th century painting titled Tantric Form of Monkey God Hanuman, being displayed for the first time.
Other highlights include an early 19th century masterpiece “Rama, Sita and Lakshmana Begin their Life in the Forest” that represents the sophisticated late Pahari painting tradition; a rare late 18th century textile piece, “The Combat of Rama and Ravenna”; and an important group of six paintings from “The Shangri Ramayana” series dating from 1690 to 1710.
The philosophical dimension of Ramayana finds visual expression in these images, particularly its interest in the themes of morality, kingship and Rama’s status as a divine manifestation or ‘avatar’ of Hindu deity Vishnu. The exhibition is organised by Kurt Behrendt, Associate Curator in the Department of Asian Art of The Met. The exhibition will conclude in August 2020. (IANS)
Once Lord Hanuman assumed a very rare form of Panch-Mukhi Hanuman to kill the demon Ahiravan
Hanuman was kind of a naughty kid in his childhood and he often used to tease the meditating sages in the forests
Agni blessed Lord Hanuman, Saying, “Fire will never burn you
Lord Hanuman was a passionate devotee of Lord Rama and one of the crucial characters in the various versions of the epic Ramayana found in the Indian subcontinent. The glorious tales of Lord Hanuman is also mentioned in several other texts, such as the Mahabharata, the Puranas, the Buddhist and Sikh texts.
As per several other texts, Lord Hanuman is also presented as an incarnation of Shiva. Hanuman is the son of Anjana and Kesari. He is also taken as the son of the wind-god Vayu, who according to several stories played a role in his birth.
The Hanuman Jayanti is also known as Hanuman Janam-Utsav. Hanuman Jayanti is a Hindu religious festival that celebrates the birth of Lord Sri Hanuman, who is immensely venerated throughout India and Nepal.
Hanuman Jayanti is celebrated on different days in different parts of India. In many states, the festival is observed either in the day of Chaitra Pournimaa or in the month of Vaishakha. In a few states like Kerala and Tamil Nadu, Hanuman Jayanti is celebrated in the Hindu month of Margazhi.
The Hanuman Chalisa literally means forty Chaupais (chapter) on Lord Hanuman. It is a Hindu devotional hymn addressed to Lord Hanuman.
Traditionally, it was believed that Hanuman Chalisa was authored by 16th-century poet Tulsidas in the Awadhi language and is his best-known text apart from the Ramcharitmanas.
The word “Chalisa” is derived from “Chalis”, which means the number forty in Hindi. So does the Hanuman Chalisa has 40 verses.
Here, we have compiled some interesting facts about Lord Hanuman which will surely amaze you.
Lord Hanuman’s battle with Lord Rama
The sage Vishwamithra ordered Lord Rama to kill Yayati. Sensing the gravity of the situation, Yayathi pleaded Lord Hanuman for help. The Yayati was promised By Hanuman that he would save Yayati from any kind of danger.
In the battlefield, Lord Hanuman did not use any weapon. Hanuman stood chanting Rama’s name and the arrows from Lord Rama’s bow did not have any effect on him
Finally, Lord Rama had to give up and sage Vishwamithra relieved Rama of his word seeing the courage of Hanuman.
2. Hanuman’s hunger saga
Once Lord Hanuman visited Sita Mata in sage Valmiki’s cottage and expressed his desire to eat some food cooked by Sita. Sita Mata started cooking many dishes and started serving Hanuman.
But Hanuman’s hunger was unquenchable and the entire rations of the house were coming to an end and finally, Sita Mata had to pray Lord Rama. Then Lord Hanuman suggested Sita Mata serve a morsel with a Tulsi Leaf and then his hunger was finally satisfied.
Once Lord Hanuman assumed a very rare form of Panch-Mukhi Hanuman to kill the demon Ahiravan. Ahiravan was the younger brother of Ravan, who kidnapped Ram and Lakshman and took them to the Netherworld. The only way to kill Ahiravan was to extinguish 5 lamps in 5 different directions, which Lord Hanuman did with Panch-Mukhi form.
The other five faces of Hanuman, apart from himself are that of Narasimha, Garuda, Varaha and Hayagriva.
4. Demise of Rama
Lord Ram would have lived more only if Lord Hanuman wouldn’t have allowed Yama to enter Ayodhya to claim Ram.
Lord Ram diverted Hanuman’s attention by dropping his ring through a crack in the floor and asked Hanuman to fetch it back for him. Lord Hanuman immediately reached the land of serpents and asked their King for Ram’s ring and the king showed Hanuman a vault filled with rings all of which were Ram’s.
5. The curse on Hanuman
Hanuman was kind of a naughty kid in his childhood and he often used to tease the meditating sages in the forests. Finding Lord Hanuman’s unbearable acts, but realizing that he was but a child, the sages placed a mild curse on him by which he became unable to remember his own ability unless reminded by another person.
The curse of the sages is featured in Kishkindha Kanda and Sundara Kanda when Jambavantha reminds Hanuman of his abilities and encourages him to go and find Sita.
6. God’s blessing to Hanuman
After the birth of Lord Hanuman, Varuna blessed Lord Hanuman with a boon that he would always be protected from water and Agni blessed him, Saying, “Fire will never burn you.” Surya blessed him with two siddhis of yoga namely “Laghima” and “Garima”(“Laghima” could help him to attain the smallest form and with “Garima” the biggest form of life).
Vayu showered Lord Hanuman with more speed than he himself had and Yama (the God of Death) blessed him with a healthy life.
Hanuman is also appraised to be the brother of Bhima as they had the same father, Vayu. During the Pandavas’ exile, Hanuman masked as a weak and aged monkey to Bhima in order to subdue his arrogance.
Hanuman put his tail by blocking Bhima’s way. Bhima, unaware of his identity, tells him to move it out of the way but was refused by Lord Hanuman. Bhima wasn’t able to move the tail by himself, despite his great strength.
8. Mahabharata’s relevance
During the illustrious battle of Kurukshetra, Arjuna made his way into the battlefield with a flag displaying Hanuman on his chariot.
Earlier, after one of the encounters between Hanuman and Arjuna, Hanuman appeared as a small talking monkey before Arjuna at Rameshwaram, where Rama had built a bridge to cross over to Lanka.
Hanuman challenged Arjuna to build such a bridge alone when Lord Hanuman found out that Arjuna’s was wondering aloud at Rama’s taking the help of monkeys rather than building a bridge of arrows.