Sita - Ram

'Maryada Purushottam' Lord Shri Ram was the highest upholder of 'Dharma' in the Hindu Shashtra, as per the epic Ramayan. He upheld the duties of a son, brother, king, husband, father at the highest level in the face of great adversities.

Ram was the 'avatar' or incarnation of Lord Vishnu. He was born as the eldest son of the great King Dashrath of Ayodhya. Ram was the king elect and had three brothers, Lakshman, Bharat, and Shatrughan. All brothers loved each other very much and held great ideals.

King Dashrath had three wives, Sumitra, Kaushalya, and kakey. Once Queen Kakey had obliged king Dashrath in a mighty war. Out of his gratefulness to her, the king told her that he would grant her one wish regarding whatever she wanted. The queen was very happy but did not have any relevant wishes at that time. She requested Dashrath that she would remind him and ask him for a boon later when she really desires something. Dashrath agreed.

When it came time for Ram to ascend the throne, Kakey asked for her wish fulfillment promise. Dashrath agreed not knowing what was brewing in the queen’s heart. Kakey asked that her son - Bharat - should ascend the throne and not the anointed Ram. Also that Ram should go live in the jungle for 14 years and not step in Bharat’s way.

The king was heartbroken. He loved Ram dearly and knew this was an injustice to someone who was qualified in every way to be a great king. At the same time, he was bound by his promise to Kakey.

Ram readily gave up the throne to uphold his father’s words of promise. Together with his wife Sita and brother Lakshman, he left for the jungle. Dashrath died with humiliation, repentance and grief.

Bharat refused to ascend the throne knowing very well that this was injustice and greed on the part of his mother. Since Ram could not be deterred from carrying out his father’s promise to kakey, Bharat could not convince Ram to return to Ayodhya. Instead, he took Ram’s ‘Charan Paduka’ or slipper and kept them on the throne as a symbol of Ram. From aside the throne, he ruled Ayodhya as a safe keeper of his brother’s throne, till Ram returned.

Sita was the incarnation of Goddess Lakshmi. She was the daughter of king Janak of Mithila.

Once king Janak conducted a huge ‘yagna’ or prayer ceremony. The 'pandits' or priests asked him to till a little land for the rituals. As Janak ploughed the field, he dug up a small container which contained a very beautiful girl child. Janak adopted the child as his daughter, brought her back to his palace and named her Sita. Upon growing up Sita married Shri Ram.

Lord Vishnu thus took the Ram avatar along with Goddess Lakshmi in the Sita avatar to bring ‘Dharma’ back to the world. The world was under the torment of the extremely intelligent but mighty tyrant ‘Rakshasa’ or demon king, Ravana of Lanka.

Ravana abducted Sita from the forest. A mighty war thus ensued between Ram and Ravana. Along with Hanuman (the avatar of Lord Shiva), Ram waged a war with Ravana and defeated him.

Good was finally victorious over evil and the earth’s agony was replaced with peace and happiness. Harmony, unity, and progress was once more restored for stability and happy life to flourish again.