Dussehra: More than Rama and Ravana

dussehra
Rama and Ravana/ Photo Credit: The BlackCat

Dussehra, the day, Raghunandan Ramachandra defeated the Lankapati Dashanan Ravana and rescued his wife Sita. The name Dussehra has its roots in two Sanskrit words Dasha and Hara, where first word Dasha represents the Dashanan Ravana and second part Hara means the defeat. By which, Dussehra can be interpreted as the defeat of Ravana. Similarly, the day is also known as Vijaydashmi, which means the victory on the tenth day of the war.

As per Hindu mythology, on this day, in Treta Yuga, Ramachandra, the seventh avatar of Vishnu, killed Ravana, who had abducted his wife Sita. Rama along with his brother Lakshman and some staunch followers like Hanuman, Angad, Sugreeva, Jamabavan and Vanara army fought a great war against Ravana to rescue Sita.

However, do you really think? It happened in this way. I mean someone with his brother, a handful of staunch followers, and a monkey army defeated a fierce enemy with an army of tens of thousand. I do not think so. But I am not saying it can’t happen and Ramayana is a blunt lie. I think, it’s a over-fictionalized narration of what really happened or it could be just a symbol.

I believe, Ramayana is all symbolic. The word Rama means an ideal being, a person who believes in spreading happiness and joy whereas Ravana means an obnoxious being, a person who cries a lot about the lack of opportunities and non-supportive surrounding. So, if we deduce from these simple interpretations, it is a fight between idealistic way of living versus not so idealistic way.

Similarly, Dashanana, one with ten heads, a sobriquet given to Ravana, also happen to be symbolic in nature. It could be seen as ten vices not ten heads. The ten vices are Kama (lust), Krodha (anger), Moha (attachment), Lobha (greed), Madda (pride), Matsara (jealousy), Swartha (selfishness), Anyaya (injustice), Amanavta (cruelty) and Ahankara (ego). And if we carefully observe our surrounding, we will find that most of us are being infected from one of these ten vices.

In the end, it is not about Rama and Ravana. It is about you and your vices. Dussehra symbolizes your victory over your vices, not Rama’s victory over Ravana. I hope, I have conveyed my message clearly but if you think, I have missed on some points, please let me know. Your comments are welcome.

6 Comments


  1. Though I believe it had happened, I appreciate your analysis and moral deduction from the epic. In present context, we too have the opportunity to become Rama after overcoming Ravana in the form 10 vices you indicated.

    Reply

    1. First thank you Ravish to drop your comments here. See, I am not saying, it hadn’t happened at all. All I am saying, that it is overly fictionalized and overly romanticized retelling of what really happened.

      Reply

  2. Great analysis. Sometimes beliefs dilute the real purpose, maybe that has happened with our mythology. Your post is a mature interpretation of Dussehra..

    Reply

  3. As I belive ravana is the good guy, But after rama won the wa he distroyed all evidence includng rawayanaya(*not Ramayanaya) if anybody can find the Ravayanaya he can know the exact truth

    Reply

  4. As I belive ravana is the good guy, But after rama won the wa he distroyed all evidence includng rawayanaya(*not Ramayanaya) if anybody can find the Ravayanaya he can know the exact truth

    Reply

  5. Really interesting analysis. In fact, this symbolism is prevalent in most Hindu mythological stories.

    Reply

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