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Sri Ram Janam Bhoomi Prana Pratisha Article Competition winners

Rāmāyaṇa where ideology and arts meet narrative and historical context by Prof. Nalini Rao

Rāmāyaṇa tradition in northeast Bhārat by Virag Pachpore


From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia
Then the northern rays of the sun are the northern honey-cells [of the beehive]. The mantras envisioned by the sages Atharvā and Aṅgirā are the bees, and the Itihāsas and Purāṇas [i.e., history and legends] are the flower. The water [from the sacrifice, such as the soma juice and other things] is the nectar [of the flower].

Those Atharvā-Aṅgirasā mantras stimulated the Itihāsas and Purāṇas [i.e., the history and the legends]. Out of that so stimulated emerged fame, vitality, the power of the organs, energy, and the essence of food.

Chandogya Upanishad 3.4.1-2

The word itihAsa splits as iti-ha-Asa and means thus-verily-happened. Therefore itihAsa means history as it truly happened.

Many texts of Sanatana Dharma record history - just in a form that is different than what is now considered to be the norm. Today, the definition of History is that which was introduced into India by the British. Much prior to that, the sages recorded history so that future generations could benefit from its learnings. The Rigveda has recorded some history, the Ramayana of Valmiki and the Mahabharata by Sage Vyasa are popular examples of Itihasa.

The Ramayana and Mahabharata were composed in an epic format, which means as poetry in order to make it easy for people to listen, learn, and preserve history.


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