Ramayana or Mahabharata – Favourite Indian Epic Poll Post
Hope your Monday was great! Few days back I was curious to know which is people’s favourite epic. Hence I conducted a poll on my facebook and instagram stories. People have to choose between Ramayana and Mahabharata. And 62% chose Mahabharata as their favourite epic.
My childhood stories were mostly from Ramayana and Mahabharata, be it at home or at school. Not just my childhood, in fact in most Indian Families this is seen. Children are told the stories of Ram and Krishna. Apart from worshiping them as Gods, they are seen as one in the family. With technological advancements, we watch them on screen. In India when Ramanand Sagar first aired Ramayana there were incidents like trains being halted in stations to watch the show on TV on Sunday morning from 9-10AM. Such was the interest people had in epics. It does continue even today.
Now during lockdown, I see many people glued to Televisions to watch Mahabharatam repeat in Tamil on Star Vijay Tv. There are numerous related memes which make things even merrier.
Apart from the entertainment point of view, Ramayana and Mahabharata are deep rooted in routine. Sometimes they are explicit and sometimes the lessons have to be decoded. They do show us how to live and how not to live. We are indeed indebted for these two epics. They hold life lessons for all situations that we face everyday. Even for the most difficult situations, secretive situations one get answers from the epics.
Coming to the poll, Ramayana and Mahabharata. Ramayana is from Thyretha yuga and Mahabharata is from Dwapara yuga. The below are humbly my opinions. It is not to hurt anyone and I am not qualified to make judgement which is better. The following are just my observations and are not judgments.
Ramayana is all about the perfect man who showed how to lead a pious life as a king. There could be many arguments on Sri Ram not being a perfect husband but we cannot deny that when a man is in public life his private life is always compromised.
Media do interfere in celebrities life right?
So has happened in that times. A separate analysis can be made on this aspect. More in later posts.
The entire epic revolves around how good a man can be and the kind of compromises on his pleasures he has to make to uphold righteousness. The kind of path he chooses is harder. It is close to impossible for a normal human being to follow without resentment.
So, it is clear in Ramayana that he is a god incarnate though it wasn’t explicit. He is normal, boring for anyone who doesn’t follow rules. To him adhering to rules was adventure. Unto the last he held it.
Ramayana is more like a rule book in my perspective. Everything is said, practised by one person. For a normal human being who has to run a family, handle office, being socially responsible all rules could daunt him. Lord Rama is seen as a king, a Nobleman, Mariyadha Purushothram. People felt difficult to follow all of the rules. They needed support and guidance in adhering to rules. So there came Mahabharata. In Mahabharata Lord Krishna, right from day one showed his godly powers. But he is seen as a fun loving boy, passionate lover, a trustworthy friend, a guiding force as Jagath Guru.
In Ramayana the Lord himself did it all. In Mahabharata he made others do and had their backs. And so I think people are able to relate better. Lord Rama or his brothers were epitome of sacrifices. Whereas in Mahabharata it speaks about all the emotions that a man undergoes, especially the painful ones like jealousy, partiality, neglect and many more. So, people see Arjun, Bheem, Panchali from their shoes. Their pain is still felt and people feel connected.
I see this relatable aspect as the main factor why Mahabharata is the favourite among people. If you have different observations on these two epics on favoritism do share them. It could be a healthy discussion.
Have a great day!