Epic Expressions

Discussion in 'Ramayana' started by garry420, Feb 7, 2016.

  1. garry420

    garry420 Well-Known Member

    Language, culture, custom, history, and religion have shaped Ramayana throughout Asia, but the basic story can still be recognized in its many different manifestations, ancient and modern. Similarly Ramayan too has influenced their culture, art, folk-arts, music, poetry, painting, sculpture, language and value systems.

    Oral and literary versions of the epic have inspired the visual and performing arts everywhere, proof that it remains a living tradition. In India, these include ancient temple carvings in stone and wood, classical and folk paintings, dances, and ceremonial dramas, all sorts of puppets, and toys. Bengali singers travel room village to village, unrolling painted scrolls of episodes from the story to the accompaniment of narrative songs. Every year for at least ten days, Hindus across many parts of India celebrate the Deshara festival. During this time episodes from Ramayana are performed, culminating in the death of Ravana and the burring of huge ogre effigies to symbolist the victory of good over evil.

    This Ramayan story consciously and unconsciously, through puppet shows, art, temples, stage shows, etc., continues to exert its influence in all these Asian societies.

    The role of Sri Hanuman is also beyond comparison in all these versions. All across India, temples dedicated to Sri Hanuman far out-number those of Rama or any other character. In Thailand, tattoos or images of Sri Hanuman worn on their bodies bestow strength, courage, endurance and protection against pain. The Southeast Asian Games in 1997 used Sri Hanuman as its mascot. Our Baba is a popular figure or diety in all these countries. Hanuman or Hanumat or Aanjaneya or Anjata or Maruti is known by different names in these countries:
    Hanoman in Balinese, Anoman and Senggana in Javanese, Haliman in Karbi, Anjat or Anujit in Khmer, Hanmone(e), Hulahman, Hunahman, Huonahman, Huorahman in Lao, Haduman, Hanuman Kera Putih, Kera Kechil Imam Tergangga, Pahlawan Udara, Shah Numan in Malay, Laksamana (yes, and Laxman is known as Mangawarna) in Maranao, Hanumant in Sinhalese, Anuman in Tamil, Anchat or Wanon in Thai and Hanumandha or Hanumanta in Tibetan.

    Long ago the Ramayana became popular in Southeast Asia and manifested itself in text, temple architecture and performance, particularly in Java, Sumatra, Borneo, Indonesia, Thailand, Cambodia and Malaysia. Today, it belongs to the whole humanity because it is capable of serving as a code of ethics for all human beings, irrespective of caste, creed, color and religion.

Share This Page