Ramayana Games receives appreciation from HH Pujya Sri Datta Vijayananda Teertha Swamiji, Mysore Datta Peetham

HH Pujya Sri Datta Vijayananda Teertha Swamiji highly appreciated the efforts of bringing Ramayana into every hand by creating mobile stories and games.

He was kind enough to allocate his valuable time listening to the Ramayana Story and watching the game. The cool animations of the story attracted his attention. He also liked the pictures of Rama and Viswamitra in the story and was inquiring about the artist who drew those pictures.

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Its a great encouragement to the Ramayana Games team to receive blessings and appreciation from His Holiness.
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Story behind Onam

Onam is the day on which Lord Vishnu was born as Vamana on earth.
This festival comes on Dwadasi (12th Day) of the month Bhadrapada.

Some details about Vamana avatara as per Bhagavatam:

Emperor Bali was the grandson of Prahlada. Prahlada’s son was Virochana whose son was Bali.
Lord Vishnu took one avatara (Narasimha avatara) to protect his devotee Prahlada from his own father Hiranyakasapa. He took one more avatara to curb Bali from occupying the kingdom of Devas.

Once guru Sukracharya, on behalf of Bali performed ‘Viswajit’ yaaga, as a result of which Bali got a powerful Bow and an arrow holder which can create arrows on its own and keep itself full always. He also got a golden chariot and sacred jacket that can protect him from any arrow. With all these powers, Bali attacked Indralok and took control of all properties of gods.

Deeply pained by the plights of devatas, their mother Aditi requested her husband Kasyapa to suggest a way out. Based on his suggestion, she performed a vrat called payovrat which essentially is a way of praying lord Vishnu. As a result, lord Vishnu appeared her and promised that he would become her son and do the needed favor to Devas.

Thus, lord Vishnu was born to Atidi on Dwadasi of month of Bhadrapada in the form of Vamana. In this incarnation lord became brother of Indra hence he is also called ‘Upendra’.

Immediately, the kid took the form of a little brahmin boy of age 7. Bruhaspati performed the necessary rituals like Upanayanam. After which the boy went to the place where Bali was performing Aswametha Yaga. Bali could clearly see the diving glow of the boy and welcomed him. As per the customs of the Yaga, Bali offered a boon to the boy who asked for three paces of land.

Vamana then revealed his identity and enlarged to gigantic proportions to stride over the three worlds. He stepped from heaven to earth with the first step, from earth to the netherworld with the second. King Mahabali, unable to fulfill his promise, offered his head for the third.

Vamana then placed his foot and gave the king immortality for his humility. He was also allowed to return every year to see the citizens of his country. People of Kerala celebrate Onam every year welcoming the return of Mahabali.

For the sacrifice that Bali has offered, he got equally many boons from the Lord.
Bali is one of the chiranjeevis, who lives till the end of Kalpam (or who has no death).
Bali is made the king of sutala loka and Lord himself in the form of a demon protects that loka as a gate keeper.
For the next coming manvantara (surya saavarni manvantara), Bali will be made Indra.

Age of Rama when he killed Ravana

As per Ramayana, the average age of humans is much much higher in Treta yuga compared to Kali yuga. As per Ramayana, after returning from his exile Rama ruled the kingdom for eleven thousand years.

But what was his age when he achieved the biggest achievement, killing Ravana.

At the time of Yaga Rakshana

When sage Viswamitra asked Dasaratha to send Rama to protect his Yagna, in one of the slokas, Dasaratha said that Rama is barely 16, hence wouldn’t be able to fight with dangerous demons.

In the same trip, Rama lifted the Sivadhanus and married Sita. Hence by the time he got married, he was around 16 years old.

At the time of going to forest

When Hanuman found Sita in Lanka, once she got confidence on Hanuman, she narrated their story. In that conversation, Sita told Hanuman that they lived in Ayodhya for 12 years after their marriage before they left to forest.

Based on that, by the time they left for forest, Rama’s age was around 28 Years.

At the time of war

After that they stayed in forest for 13 years when Ravana kidnapped Sita and imprisoned her for one more year. Rama killed Ravana by the end of 14 years and returned back to Ayodha directly from Lanka on Pushpaka.

So by the time Rama killed Ravana, he would be at 42 years old.

Though Rama ruled the kingdom for 11 thousand years, the first 42 years of his life was full of miseries and adventures. With all the experience he gained in that period, he established the ideal world – Ramarajya.

What was Ravana’s age when he died

It is interesting to find out the age of Ravana by the time he got killed. Please leave a comment if you have any account of the same.

 
(courtesy: panchananaramayanam.blogspot.in )

Finally, an Indian game based on our very own Ramayana is released. You will surely enjoy playing it. Please click below to download!

Download iOS

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An app by Indians for all those who love Indian culture. Please encourage such initiatives. Forward this messages to all your friends and groups who might be interested in this culture.

He is an Acharya through whom the divine power acts

Identifying and contacting a Sadguru, a Perfect Master, is the crux of the problem of spiritual evolution of man, both collective and individual, especially in the present times, when the mass media and fanfare have made it more of a craze than a serious pursuit. Yet, fortunately for the serious-minded, there is a hope and a clear-way: the devout study of Sree Guru Charitra.
The phenomenon is analogous to that of remote control initially, leading to immediate, personal contact: a gadget must be capable of receiving the remote commands; the seeker too has to evolve in himself, some potential which can respond positively to the subtle, all pervasive spiritual field of the Master.
The study of Sree Guru Charitra does just this for us.The study of Sree Guru Charitra focuses our inherently extrovert awareness on that spiritual potential in us, of which Sree Guru is an objective manifestation, an Archetype, a sort of reflector of our awareness on to its original Self. As we persevere diligently, our awareness gets oriented to his presence every moment of our life. At one stage, the message is strong and unmistakable: the goal, the Perfect Master is sighted. In his perpetual immediate presence, our potential matures and the Seeker and the Sought become One. Till then, Sree Guru Charitra is the Master, this end of this innate tie. And such a one never proclaims himself to the world. For him there is no world apart from his Master, no seeking for disciples and no need of constant reassurance of his credentials to anyone. The path may seem too long for some. But if one is genuinely interested in it, the pleasure of it is the journey; only such a one reaches the goal.For, it is not an outward journey with spatial and temporal implications, but is an in ward ripening. The fruit ripens through contact with the tree. 
From http://www.saibharadwaja.org/books/srigurucharitra/

Your brother is with you, mine left me…

In the battle field, just before dying, Ravana discusses the reasons for his defeat with Rama. The discussion goes like this:

” Rama…. I am superior to you in almost all the aspects of life.

I am a brahmin.. you are a kshatriya

I am elder to you

my family and the forces are bigger than yours

the glory of my kingdom is higher than yours

Your antahpuram (place where the king and queen relax) is made from gold, but my entire kingdom is made from gold

I am more powerful and stronger to you

my kingdom is much bigger than yours

I have more powers and intellect than you

But in spite of being superior in all aspects, I lost in the battle.

The reason for this is very simple:

YOUR BROTHER IS WITH YOU AND MY BROTHER LEFT ME AND JOINED HANDS WITH ENEMIES”

(Valmiki Ramayana doesn’t have any mention of such discussion, this seems to be a fictitious story, but contains a profound moral).

Teachings of Ravana

When the demon king Ravana was attacked by Lord Rama and was nearing his death, Rama asked his brother Lakshman to go to him and learn something which no other person except an erudite Brahmin like Ravana could ever teach him.

The story goes that after shooting the fatal arrow on the battlefield of Lanka, Ram told his brother, Lakshman, “Go to Ravana quickly before he dies and request him to share whatever knowledge he can. A brute he may be, but he is also a great scholar”.

At this Ravana said that if you have come to me as a student then you must sit at my feet because teachers must be respected and you want to learn lessons.

Lakshman went to Ravana and this time he stood near his feet. Ravana seeing Lakshman standing near his feet told him secrets that would make anyone’s life successful.

Ravana said, the most important lesson of life is that you must defer the bad action as much as you can and you must do good action without any delay and as much early as you can. If you follow this rule, you can save not only yourself but many other people from being damaged.

1- Do not be the enemy of your charioteer, your gatekeeper, your cook and your brother, they can harm you anytime.

2- Do not think you are always a winner, even if you are winning all the time.

3- Always trust the minister, who criticises you.

4-Never think your enemy is small or powerless, like I thought about Hanuman

5- Never think you can outsmart the stars, they will bring you what you are destined to

6- Either love or hate God, but both should be immense and strong.

7–A king who is eager to win glory must suppress greed as soon as it lifts its head.

8–A king must welcome the smallest chance to do good to others, without the slightest procrastination.

source: http://www.indiatvnews.com/news/india/know-the-teachings-that-ravana-gave-to-laxman-on-his-deathbed-33488.html

For all fathers, why should you teach Ramayana to your kid

After Dasaratha ordered Rama to go to forest for 14 years, Kausalya, the mother of Rama who couldn’t bear leaving Rama argues that he need not obey his father.

Rama told Kausalya, “I have no power to violate my father’s words. I wish to go to the forest. I bow to you to secure your blessings. As the one who knows righteousness, I have to carry out my father’s orders. In the process of carrying out King Sagara’s orders, none of his sons who dug through Earth, returned alive. In carrying out sage Jamadagni’s orders, his son Parasurama axed his mother Renuka. Devi! persons who were equal to gods and many others had not allowed their father’s words to go in vain. I shall do what father has asked me to do. Carrying out orders of father is not an act performed by me only. This has been accepted and adopted before, by many. One who carries out his father’s orders will not suffer any loss.”
———–
From the book “Pure Gems of Ramayana”.

Sringeri Sankaracharya about child-rearing, the guru, reconversion to Hinduism and more

How can parents instill spirituality in their children?

It is the duty of parents to inform and educate their children about our culture from a tender age. For example, as children, we were regularly told stories from the Puranas, Ramayana, Mahabharata and Bhagavata. We took in these stories and their morals and ethics. The glory of God, how He saved and elevated His devotees, the way devotees sought Him–these were etched in our minds. It made us resolve to live the same way, carrying these values, as our ancestors had done before us. Thus, whenever any Western hero is highlighted, we were certain that nobody could be greater than our own Rama. And not just at home. These stories were taught to us in our textbooks when I was in school–Ramayana, etc., as well as stories of the great pilgrim centers of our land. I don’t think there are any lessons in our textbooks today that highlight and showcase our culture. This is a very serious setback. If an environment to understand our culture is created at home and school, then elevating our children and making them worthwhile citizens is possible. But the situation is now the diametric opposite. Children do not learn our culture at home or school, and are being instead exposed to alien and contrary cultures through TV and cinema. Under these adverse influences, they are becoming rebellious and treating their parents with disregard.

What is your advice for Hindu parents in other countries?

Haven’t these parents come from here, India? Whether they are in America or in London, our culture does not change–praying to God, keeping a tulsi plant in front of the house, touching the feet of parents–these are simple things. The parents have grown up in Hindu culture and should carry it and inculcate it in their children wherever they are.

from http://www.hinduismtoday.com/modules/smartsection/item.php?itemid=5232

Is our history boring?

Yes, for me at least

As a student, I used to read history only for getting marks. Each time I do so, my reluctance to history would grow more and more. The middle kingdom of India, the order in which they ruled different parts and the wars and their dates never inspired me to read history with more attention and enthusiasm. Particularly I never understood the need for remembering all those dates.

Whom to blame

But then, is history so boring? In my opinion, Its the teachings and text books that are boring, but not the history itself. One question many people ask is, is it necessary to study history?

If you don’t know history, then you don’t know anything

As a famous author and movie director Michael Crichton puts it: “If you don’t know history, then you don’t know anything. You are a leaf that doesn’t know it is part of a tree.”

The way we live, the way we speak, our culture, traditions and every thing we see around us. has a cause that lies in the past.

History is about learning from past, about knowing that exciting journey of civilization, about being inspired by those great characters, about knowing the life of our ancestors and how they laid the foundation for our present.

But the current history text books fail to inspire students to read and understand that cause in the past. They fail to show those great people in history whose life style and values have a lot to teach to the current generation.

We can’t really make a claim that reading ‘history will shape your character’.

Epics to fill the gap

Fortunately in India, the great epics take that responsibility. They have all the excitements of a great story. Have potential to take the reader to an imaginary world. But unlike the new age books, mere excitement is not their aim. The real aim is to teach them the way of life, the dharma and consequences of violating it. Aim is to inject harmony and peace in the society and the value system that every one should follow for greater benefit of every group of the society.

We can learn these from the history also. History teaches us why one has to respect ones parents, teachers and other relations, the dangers of greed, lust, anger, ego and the purpose of ones life and destiny. But as these elements are hidden and never exposed to the students, I prefer latching on epics than history books for this purpose.