- Who was Rama – Myth or Historical Hero
We present an insightful article by eminent scholar of Vedas and History – Sri Rajveer Arya (aryarajveer @ gmail.com) written three years ago on the issue of Sri Rama being a myth or a historical legend. Its evident from the facts that Sir Rama was not only an Indian legend but a global phenomenon. There can be nothing more shameful than living in India and yet denigrating one of its greatest role models. Kindly read and circulate widely on eve of the Ayodhya judgement:
Nowadays, the issue of Ramsetu is highly talked about by many people. The government filed an affidavit before the Supreme Court which clearly denies the historical existence of Shri Rama on this earth. However, the strong opposing political parties, and other Hindu activists forced that the givernment withdrew the affidavit. Some Hindu organizations like Vishwa Hindu Parishad, claim that posing questions relating to the existence of Rama cannot be simply answered by scientific or historical data.
The existence of Rama is basically a question of faith for millions of people. Therefore, no government or any other party can deny the existence of Rama. Some of these so-called “great advocates” of Hinduism did not show guts to take on the Government/Karunanidhi, and proved that Rama is as historical fact and not a myth.
Nevertheless, they were supported from unexpected quarters like the Hurriyat conference from Kashmir. Hurriayat also claimed that scientific or historical evidence is not the yardstick to judge various issues related to religion. Hence, whether Rama existed or not cannot be decided on basis of scientific or historical findings. This is basically associated with religious sentiments of millions of people around the world, and therefore the interference of any government or political party is undesired.
As of now, many scientists, based on astronomical data, have propounded that Rama existed around 5044 BC. In such a perplexing situation it becomes very difficult for common masses to arrive at any conclusive view regarding the existence of Rama. Hence, we have to first analyze various facts regarding Rama, and his epic, Ramayana, before arriving on any final verdict.
Maharishi Valmiki, in order to guide the future generations, decided to write a historical epic that can help everyone follow a path of morality and righteousness. He ended up in a dilemma regarding this issue. Later on, he consulted Narada Muni, who in return suggested him to write about Rama, the son of Dasratha, who was born in the clan of Raghu.
Similarly, Mahakavi Kalidas wrote Raghuvansham. This book throws light on the lineage of Raghu, and also states various kings who ruled after Rama. So, now the point of the argument is that if Rama was a mythological character, then how did Valmiki provide the history of Rama’s forefathers?
In Raghuvansham, how did Kalidasa provide details of Rama’s forefathers, and his various Santatis (successors) who ruled after him? In present times various books dealing with stories of Rama are prevalent in India and around the world. We will throw light on this issue in the latter part of this article.
WHEN WAS RAMA BORN: (based on Valmiki`s Ramayana)
One of the most anticipated topics in this modern era is that when was Rama born?
Before dwelling onto this point, we have to understand that our great Maharishies have systematically divided the period of shristi into Manvantars. Each Manvantar is further divided into chaturyugis. Each chaturyugis consist of Krita (satyuga), traita, dwapar, and kaliyuga. The present Manvantar is Vaivast Manvantar. So far, twenty-seven chaturyugies have already been passed. Right now, it is the 28th chaturyugi, and we are still in the first charan (period) of this chaturyugi.
It is a well-known fact that Rama was born during the latter part of traita. Hence, if we assume that Rama was born in the present chaturyugi, then it means that he was born at least 1,000,000 years ago. The period of his birth will probably be more than this.
However, Vayu purana provides us the correct chronological period of Ramayana. If we take Vayu purana’s period into consideration then the period of Rama becomes at least 18,000,000 years old. Hence, we can easily conclude that the period of Rama in the time scale is at least 1000,000 to 8,000, 000 years. This issue will be resolved in another topic called “Blunders of Indian History”).
This particular view is also supported by the fact that when Hanuman travelled to Shri Lanka in the search of Sita, over there he saw elephants having four teeth. Hence, this is now an issue for archaeologists/biologists to ascertain when did such elephants exist on earth? (The calculations of chaturyugies will be dealt with in another topic called “Age of present shristi”).
The difficulties encountered in establishing chronological correctness of historical events for the period before Christ will be dealt with in the other article called “Blunders of History.” Another interesting fact that has been mentioned in Valmiki’s Ramayana is that the maternal home of Bharat and Shatrughan was in a country where transportations took place in the form of vehicles being propelled by dogs or deers. When the two brothers returned to Ayodhya from their maternal home, they crossed many places covered by snow, and were also dressed up in clothes made of wool. Now, the location in which this episode took place is yet to be ascertained.
According to our logic, this episode took place in Russia, and phonetically Russia sounds like misnomer of a Rishi, but this has been taken care of in our article called “Blunder of Indian/World history”. From the facts mentioned above, it clearly gives us an insight into the period of Rama’s birth. So, those who claim that Rama is only a mythological character have been proven wrong since we have provided them with so much evidence in this article. We will also establish that before the advent of Christianity and Islam, Rama was revered throughout the world as an international cult figure.
LEGENDS OF RAMAYANA IN VARIOUS PARTS OF GLOBE
1) RAMAYANA IN RUSSIA AND MANGOLIA:
The Deccan Herald, on 15th December 1972, on its front page gave the news in which it stated that a story relating to Ramayana was published in Elista, capital city of Kalmyk, in Russia. The news further stated that various legends of Ramayana were popular among people of Kalmyk. Many versions of Ramayana are already stored in the libraries of Kalmyk. The news clearly stated that legends of Ramayana were extremely popular since time immemorial. Domodin Suren, a Russian writer, has mentioned various legends that were popular among Mongolian and Kalmyk people. Prof C F Glostunky`s manuscript called “Academy of Sciences”, is located at Siberian Branch of Erstwhile, U.S.S.R. This book deals with various legends popular along the Coast of Volga River, and its manuscript is in the Kalmyk language. Last, but not the least, in Leningrad, a great number of books dealing with stories of Ramayana are still available and preserved even today in Russian and Mongolian languages.
2) RAMAYANA IN CHINA:-
In China, a large collection of Jatak stories related to various events of Ramayana, which date back to 251 A.D, were compiled by Kang Seng Hua. Another book from 742 AD, which relates the story of plight of Dasratha after Rama, was ordered to go for Vanvasa is still present in China. Similarly, in 1600 AD, His-Yii-Chii wrote a novel called Kapi (monkey) which elaborated on the stories of Ramayana, predominantly that of Hanuman.
3) RAMAYANA IN SRILANKA:-
Naresh Kumar Dhatusena also known as Kumardasa, who ruled Sri Lanka in 617 AD, wrote a book called, “Janakiharan”. This is the oldest Sanskrit literature available in Sri Lanka. In Modern Times, C. Don Bostean and John D`Silva have written stories based on Ramayana. Till now, majority of the population adore and highly respect the duo of Rama and Sita.
4) RAMAYANA IN COMBODIA (KAMPUCHIA):
Today, there are many rock inscriptions belonging to 700 AD, which are located in Khmer region of Cambodia. These rock inscriptions are based on the events of Ramayana. Many temples were constructed during the reign of Khmer dynasty, and currently, their walls depict many scenes and events of Ramayana. The temples of Ankor are very famous for the stories of Ramayana and Mahabharata. These temples belong to the earliest parts of the time period dating back from 400 AD to 700 AD. One astonishing fact in these engraved pictures is that Hanuman and the rest of the other Vanars are not shown with their tails as it is against the popular belief of the masses. (Whether Hanuman was a monkey or not, this issue will be examined later on)
5) RAMAYANA IN INDONESIA:
According to De Casperis, there was a temple named “Chandi Loro Jongrong”, which had some scenes of Ramayana engraved on its walls. This temple was from the 9th century AD. In Indonesia, another version of a story from Ramayana named Kakavin is very popular. This story is a bit different from that of Prambanan. Besides this, there were other various versions of Ramayana related stories, which were present in those early centuries after Christ, and also proves itself that Ramayana was very popular among Indonesian people before advent of Islam. It is also an astonishing fact that the first international convention on Ramayana was organized in Indonesia, a few years back.
6) RAMAYANA IN LAOS:
When local people pronounce Loas in their language, it phonetically sounds like the name of one of the sons of Rama. Besides, the temple of Vat- She-Fum and Vat-Pa-Kev also depict many scenes of Ramayana on their walls. The temples of Vat-Pra-Kev and Vat-Sisket carry books that contain the epic of Ramayana. Lafont, a French traveler translated the story of, “Pa laka-Pa lama” in his book called, “P`ommachak”, in French. This book also deals with the story of Ramayana, which is still popular among the masses of Laos.
7) RAMAYANA IN THAILAND:-
The stories of Ramayana are still very popular among the masses. In the early centuries after Christ, many kings who ruled this country had Rama as the prefix or suffix in their name. Just like in India how we organize the play of Ramayana, till today, many dramatic versions of Ramayana are organised in Thailand as well. Similarly, many dramatic versions of Ramayana are still being organized in various South East Asian countries like Indonesia, Malaysia, and Cambodia.
8) RAMAYANA IN MALAYSIA:-
In Malaysia till today plays are oraganised based on the stories of ‘HIKAYAT SERI RAMA’ ,written in 14 century AD,. Dalang society organize nearly 200-300 plays relating to Ramayana. Before commencement of the play people conduct various prayers and abulations revering RAMA and SITA.
9) RAMAYANA IN BURMA:-
King Kayanjhitha who reigned during 1084 –1112 AD; regarded himself as desecendant of clan of Rama. Various books relating to the stories of Ramayana as earlier as 15 century AD are still found in Burma. Books like ‘Kavyadarsh’ , ‘Subhasit Ratanidhi’ are based on the stories of Ramayana. Zhang-Zhungpa, commentary of Ramayana was written by Taranath, which is not available in modern times. In Burma also various form of plays are conducted based on the stories of Ramayana.
10) RAMAYANA IN NEPAL:-
Oldest version of Ramayana, belonging ot 1075 AD is still found in Nepal.
11) RAMAYANA IN PHILIPINES:-
Effect of stories of Ramayana can easily felt in the customs, traditions and legends of majority of masses. Prof Juon R Francisco found that in Marineo Muslims, legend based on Ramayana is popular, in which Rama has been depicted as Incarnation of God. Similarly among Magindanao or Sulu folk Muslims also various legends based on the stories of Ramayana are popular.
12) RAMAYANA IN IRAN:
In Hyderabad city, capital of Andhra Pradesh, there is museum name Salarjung. There one portrait which is depicting a burly monkey having a very big stone in its hand. This portrait reminds one of Hanuman holding Dronagiri. Similarly Marco Polo in his book (translated by Sir Henry Yule in English) wrote at page no 302, vol II about a peculiar belief among Muslims, spread from Afganistan to Morocco and Algeria. These Muslims believed that members of imperial house of Trebizond were endowed with short tails while mediavel continentals had like stories about Englishmen as- Mathew Paris relates…. ; .
We are of the belief that if one seriously start investigating various legends prevalent, before advent of Islam and Christianity, in Arabic countries and European countries than existence of Ramayana and Mahabharta can be proved. Due to barbaric and dogmatic acts of these peoples wide range of literature and buildings of historical importance has been wiped out.
13) RAMAYANA IN EUROPE:
In Italy, when excavation were carried out in the remains of Astrocon civilization, then various houses were found having peculiar type of paintings on their wall. These paintaings, on closure investigation, seems to be based on the stories of Ramayana. Some of the paintings shows peculiar persons having tails along with two men bearing bows and arrow on their shoulders, while a lady is standing besides them. These paintings are of 7 century BC. It should be remembered that once Astrocon civilization was spread over 75 pct of Italy.
Sir Henry Yule in his translation of works of Marcopolo has refered to the belief prevalent among Medival Europeans that there Ancestors were having small tails. The same fact has been referred by Maharishi Dayanand in his magnum opus ‘Satyarth Prakash’. There Swamiji state that people of Europe were called as Vanaras(monkeys) ,due to their appreance in our epic like Mahabharta, Valmiki Ramayana etc. If we a analyse this statement in present context, then how we are going to define various statements like kangaroos(Australian team) meet men in blue(Indian team) at Calcutta.
Similar sort of epithets were used during World war to describe armies of different countries or else we see that we have helicopters named cheetah etc. As these words(epithets) are just a way to describe different set of people, arms etc, similarly world like Rakshas, Vanaras etc were used in our legends. These facts clearly indicates that legends of Ramayana are not work of fiction and were very popular around the world .
14) RAMAYANA IN AFRICA(CONTINENT):
People of Ethiopia call themselves as descendents of Cushites. This word Cush is basically phonectic misnomer of Kush, the son of Rama. This fact is verly established by Satpath Brahamans, commentary on Vedas. These Brahamans while explaining various mantras of Vedas uses many histrorical events to elucidate the topic.
Astonishingly in Satpath Brahaman we find reference regarding the rule of King Bharata (predecessor of Kaurav and Pandavs) in Rhodesia .
Besides many inconsistent legends inspired by epic of Ramayana are prevalent in African Communities and they basically refers to various activities of vanars.
Egypt basically derives its name from Ajpati which is one of the name of forefather of Rama. If analyse various legends prevalent in Egypt there we will found references of Dasratha(father of Rama). These facts can be very well established from various historical refernces of Brahamans.(for the proof of it see our article Blunders of Indian/World history)
15) RAMAYANA IN NORTH AMERICAN AND SOUTH AMERICAN CONTINENTS:
Before Columbus discovered North American continent European people were not knowing about it. However A DE QNATREFAGES in his book, THE HUMAN SPECIES, categorically says that Chinese people were aware about the American continent and the use to have trade relations with them America was referred as Fad-Sang. Similarly in Japanese people it was known as Fad-See. Similarly, if we refer to various historical reference in Mahabharata, Valmiki Ramayana etc we will find that American continent has been reffered as Patal Desh(Patal means below foot). If we geographically see then we will find that American continent is just below the Indian Subcontinent. We will throw greater light on this issue in our topic, BLUNDERS OF INDIAN HISTORY/WORLD HISTORY.
But for your reference we are providing you some prevalent legends.
a) Beautiful girl in Mexican tribal area till today are called as Ulopy. If we see in Mahabharata we find reference of Arjuna marrying girl named Ulopy who was daughter of King of Patal Desh.
b) W H Prescott in his book , ‘ History of conquest of Mexico’, provides various reference which prove that earlier civilization of American subcontinent have major similarities with that of Indian(Aryan) civilization.
However here we are providing you one reference which clearly state that Ramayana is not mythological epic but it bears historical testimony. According to writer of the book there is popular legend in Aztec community which state that a beautiful person named Quevtsal Katal came there from east and taught them various aspects of advanced civilization as a result his period was treated as golden era. He then went back to his original homeland because of persecution by some divine creature. This legends surprisingly does not throw light on the reasons why he returned.
Another interesting fact that has been stated by Prescott is that this legend is available in documented form. Now, none except Indian tradition can claim that they bear root to this legend. The same story has been narrated in Valmiki Ramayana, in uttarkand where it is mentioned that Salkantak Rakshas who dwelled in Lanka were persecuted by Vishnu. Due to this persecution they left Lanka and went to Patal Desh. The leader of this group was Sumali. According to Ramayana they lived in Patal Desh for long time. When they found condition congenial they returned to their homeland.
It is for readers to decide when such conclusive proof are there to establish that epic of Ramayana is not mythological legend but it is historical evidence which bears testimony to various legends prevalent around the world. Till today play named Ramasitotav is played in various communities of Mexico. To our amazement Rama has been mentioned in Bible, new testament, Mathew ch 2/18, where it is mentioned “ his voices was heard in RAMA”. Rama is proper noun there, now it is for biblical society to define who was Rama and why he has been mentioned in Bible.
Even the name of Dasratha and Ayodhya are there in Bible. We will be referring to these facts in Blunders of Indian/world History.
Now we would pose some tickling questions to the sickular historians:
1) Why month of fasting among muslims is called Ramadhan ?
2) Why place in Gazastrip is called Ramallaha ?
3) Why place in London is named as Ramsgate ?
4) Why capital of Italy is known as Rome(misnomer of Rama)
We can provide various examples where word Rama has been used as suffix or prefix with the names of various historical places/persons or misnomer of Rama has been used as name for historical places/persons. None of the historical evidence provides conclusive answer to these facts unless we take Indian historical evidences into account.
It is widely accepted that the King Alexander invaded India. It really sounds ironical that we are accepting this theory without any historical evidence, on the other hand we go on to deny existence of Rama despite various historical evidences are there to prove that he was not mythical but a historical Mahanayak.
These historians in order to refute Rama`s existence are ridiculously harping the same old tone of theory of evolution which does not have any scientific proof. (Why and how theory of evolution gained importance will be dealt in our article – How the universe is created. The only thing of significance regarding theory of evolution, we want to state here is that it was a tool which was invented to challenge the draconian supremacy of church. The church use to claim that this world was created by God out of nothing and the age of this Univerese is not more than 10000 years. By the help of evolutionary theory scientific world challenged the supremacy of churh and overcame the clergy.)
This is for readers to decide by themselves how they are going to treat Rama. We think that we have provided lot of food for thought. Those who are illogically biased may still refute the existence of Rama while those who are logical and believe that mythological character can never gain such world wide respect/reverence will start looking upon Rama from wider historical evidences.
Here we want to clarify following points:
1) Rama was a Mahanayak, a legendary person who lived a pristine life and is an example to be emulated till today.
2) Its immaterial whether Ramasetu, on which lot of controversy is being created, was built by Rama so far proving authenticity of Rama is concerned. Regardless of whether they prove Ramsetu to be manmade or natural creation, existence of Ram cannot be denied.
3) Valmiki Ramayana is not fiction but an epic based on historical evidence.
For those who are questioning existence of Rama, let them first justify whether their forefathers ever existed, by using the same yardstick that they are using to question the existence of Rama. At least there are more evidences of Rama being a historical hero than existence of forefathers of these historians.