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  1. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by suraju06 View Post
    Dear Sangom Sir, you have said this in post #12



    And in post#29



    Your interpretation of the data available is that:
    1. There existed a king or a chieftain by name Rama in the northern part of Bharathvarsha (I am avoiding the word India because it will rile up my friend Prasad) and his story is the same as Ramayana and was a part of the folklore of those times.
    2. Valmiki was some energetic poet who had a taste for writing poetry and was inspired by the Greek tradition set in motion by Homer with his Iliyad and Odyssy in Hexameter verse. So our friend Valmiki wrote this epic Ramayana influenced by Greeks. So it is just a story of a mortal.
    3. In support of this we have speculation that Homer lived in 850 BC. Alexander came to India in 340 BC and our friend Valmiki lived some time after all this and had the benefit of knowledge of existence of Iliyad and Odyssy and had the inspiration to pen his epic in the short but complex anushtup metre in Sanskrit.

    Dear Sir, This is one line of argument about the epic which looks at the epic from the angle of the beginingless and endless continum called TIME to the exclusion of every thing else that is associated with the epic. So I start with the question ‘what if’. Yes.What if the epic was indeed a story borrowed from the folklore? What if the grammatical anushtup metre verse form had its inspiration from the Hexameter verse form of ancient Greece? Though I have differences about your interpretation of the origin of the epic, its being a mirror image of Iliyad or Odyssy in its form etc., I am not questioning you about that now. I am leaving it aside. I take something else in your interpretation which is altogether different. You are trying to reduce the epic Ramayana to a mere chronicle/a folk lore whereas it is for millions of Indians the story of how God came to earth as an avatar and lived here.







    The moss covered rocks that you have dismissed with disdain pertains to the faith of millions of people in Bharathvarsh. As different from the God idea that exists in other faiths, the Hindu faith had always been responding to the needs of the faithfull followers with many personal Godheads.
    (1) You can be a very well educated and well informed individual delving deep into its vedas and upanishads and indulging in study and discussion of the brain teasing but empty advaita
    (2) You can be a Rshi who has given up interest in worldly possessions and is engaging in deep meditation to ‘realize’.
    (3)You may not be that fortunate and happen to be an ordinary Hindu who has a need to have some tangible form of the God idea so that he can pray and ask for forgivence of all his misdeeds (because ethics and morals are common for every one)
    (4)You may be an unlettered labourer who subsists but who at the end of the day remembers that he has some surplus to spend and wants to imitate his master and so looks to a God to whom he can offer a cigar and a bottle of Toddy(because they are the luxuries that he can think of)

    All the above four category of people have an opportunity to have a Godhead of their liking in the Hindu religion. It is here that Rama the hero of the Epic Ramayana comes in. Whether there existed a Rama in flesh and blood at any time on this earth is of no consequence to the Hindus who worship him as God. When there was a need to have the God idea represented in anthropomorphic form there was no better way than to take a leaf from the folk lore and adopt its best hero with all kalyana gunas as the God. The Icon Rama with bow and arrow may not be very important but the idea he represents is important. He is the God idea for millions in the anthropomorphic form which is easy to understand, comprehend and deal with. This form and many other forms –including the rarefied form of nirguna brahmam-are the representation of God and that transformed Ramayana from just another Iliyad or Odyssey to a religious itihasa. I can give you here the complete idea I have tried to convey, by these simple tamil words. While explaining what the five forms of the God are Pillailokacharyar says:

    பூகத ஜலம் போலே அந்தர்யாமித்துவம்; ஆவரண ஜலம்போலே பரத்துவம்; பாற்கடல் போலே வியூகம்; பெருக்காறு போலே விபவம்; அதிலே தேங்கின மடுக்கள் போலே அர்ச்சாவதாரம்.

    I can further elaborate on this with his own words but the post will become very lengthy. If our erudite Sangom Sir, keeps ruminating about the universal consciousness spoken about by Sankara while refusing to accept that there can be a God, my friend Vedabhothakam Arulsingh keeps thinking about the significance of the three entities spoken about in Bible –the Father , the Son and the Holy Ghost, and my another friend Khursheed Ahmed keeps wondering secretly what his God will look like. I am free from all this pain. I worship Rama my personal God with full faith. I am at peace with myself. This is not a peace I got in exchange for any compromise. With all the intellect that God has given me I have understood the complexity of the problem well and yet has chosen the பெருக்காற்றில் தேங்கிய மடுவான அர்ச்சாவதாரம் deliberately as it makes excellent sense to me. And so dear Sir, all that is said in Ramayana makes sense too to me. It is not moss accumulated over millennia. Ramanuja, by the way, did not discard all the time-honored views. It was not as if he threw overboard everything which was time-honored and made path-breaking new discovery of a religion. It appears you have a penchant for getting recruited to anything new just because it is new.



    Again TIME. It is very convenient. As if a beauty of yesterday can not remain a beauty today because of TIME. Opinions and views have to be condemned for their being OLD (a derivative of TIME). The west is indeed rational and logical and that is why they had pogroms, apartheid and Hiroshima and Nagasaaki inflicted on the humanity. They are rational that is why they have suicide cults killing themselves or have KKK killing others for silly reasons of color of skin. They are very logical and that is why the briefcase with the button is carried by their chieftains wherever they go-it needs just a push of the button to let loose thermo nuclear and other WMDs on “enemies”. Please understand that west is just a direction and the people who live there are having all the weaknesses that the people in East south and north have. I have personal experience dealing with some of those from the “west” with hare brains who were stupidity personified.

    And my friend Prasad said in #30



    We are, I think, talking here about India which was once the geographical area called Bharathvarsh.

    Cheers.
    Dear Shri Raju,

    What is your point as I was mesmerized by your presentation?!
    Regards,
    Srinivasan Vaidyaraman
  2. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by prasad1 View Post
    Mr. Raju Sir,
    I have great respect for your knowledge and you present it very eloquently. I do not say it lightly.
    You have a misconception that when I differ from your point of view, then somehow I am anti-India, or I admire the west more than the East. Put aside your preconceived notion about my point of view and just read what I am writing. I write what I feel, and I am honest about it. There are great things that we do not know that we can learn everyday. A gem found anywhere has the same value.
    Please give credit to your audience, not all of them are fools.
    Dear friend Prasad,

    I recognize and respect that every one here has a right to have a view. I also understand that it is a manifestation of their firm belief and clear understanding of the matter. I do not take them lightly. I have absolutely no preconcieved notions whatsoever about others here. When I wrote about Bharathvarsha in my earlier post it was only to point out that the landmass called Bharathvarsha which subsequently became India was existing for millions of years before 1947. Nothing more nothing less. To say India did not exist before 1947 while discussing about the Hindu religion is like saying, while discussing-say anthropology, America did not exist until Columbus landed there or that Tanzania did not exist on the face of earth until the two countries Tanganyika and Zanzibar came together in the 20th century. I respect your right to write whatever you know and want to write. I only request you to recognize my right to present what I want to about the matters discussed here. It is my right. You are a friend of me and I am sure you will understand. No hard feelings please.

    Cheers.
    Last edited by suraju06; 23-12-2012 at 09:42 AM.
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  4. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by sravna View Post
    Dear Shri Raju,

    What is your point as I was mesmerized by your presentation?!
    Dear Sravna,

    Analyzing Ramayana from the stand point of time and historicity and looking at Ramayana as a itihasa singing the praise of God Rama as an avatar are two divergent lines of argument and can result in quite diametrically opposite interpretation of the incidents, characters and underlying philosophy of Ramayana. So it would be better to be restrained while evaluating Ramayana from a historical pov.

    This is what I have said.

    Cheers.
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  6. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by suraju06 View Post
    Dear Sravna,

    Analyzing Ramayana from the stand point of time and historicity and looking at Ramayana as a itihasa singing the praise of God Rama as an avatar are two divergent lines of argument and can result in quite diametrically opposite interpretation of the incidents, characters and underlying philosophy of Ramayana. So it would be better to be restrained while evaluating Ramayana from a historical pov.

    This is what I have said.

    Cheers.

    Dear Shri Raju,

    Sure I agree. As you rightly point out the people who analyze Ramayana from the standpoint of time and historicity need to be sensitive to the feelings of the people who hold Rama as an avatar. These people should not consider knowingly or unknowingly that their approach is unbiased.
    Regards,
    Srinivasan Vaidyaraman
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  8. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by suraju06 View Post
    Dear friend Prasad,

    I recognize and respect that every one here has a right to have a view. I also understand that it is a manifestation of their firm belief and clear understanding of the matter. I do not take them lightly. I have absolutely no preconcieved notions whatsoever about others here. When I wrote about Bharathvarsha in my earlier post it was only to point out that the landmass called Bharathvarsha which subsequently became India was existing for millions of years before 1947. Nothing more nothing less. To say India did not exist before 1947 while discussing about the Hindu religion is like saying, while discussing-say anthropology, America did not exist until Columbus landed there or that Tanzania did not exist on the face of earth until the two countries Tanganyika and Zanzibar came together in the 20th century. I respect your right to write whatever you know and want to write. I only request you to recognize my right to present what I want to about the matters discussed here. It is my right. You are a friend of me and I am sure you will understand. No hard feelings please.

    Cheers.
    I fully concur with your POV. I have no problem in discussing any issue. I do not discount an argument just because I do not like the person making the argument. It belittles the argument by dismissing the other person as "westerner" or malech.
    No hard feelings at all.
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  10. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by suraju06 View Post
    Dear Sravna,

    Analyzing Ramayana from the stand point of time and historicity and looking at Ramayana as a itihasa singing the praise of God Rama as an avatar are two divergent lines of argument and can result in quite diametrically opposite interpretation of the incidents, characters and underlying philosophy of Ramayana. So it would be better to be restrained while evaluating Ramayana from a historical pov.

    This is what I have said.

    Cheers.
    I too feel that Ramayana and Mahabharata should be used for their underlying philosophy. The history is murky at best.
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  12. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by suraju06 View Post
    Dear Sangom Sir, you have said this in post #12

    And in post#29

    Your interpretation of the data available is that:
    1. There existed a king or a chieftain by name Rama in the northern part of Bharathvarsha (I am avoiding the word India because it will rile up my friend Prasad) and his story is the same as Ramayana and was a part of the folklore of those times.
    2. Valmiki was some energetic poet who had a taste for writing poetry and was inspired by the Greek tradition set in motion by Homer with his Iliyad and Odyssy in Hexameter verse. So our friend Valmiki wrote this epic Ramayana influenced by Greeks. So it is just a story of a mortal.
    3. In support of this we have speculation that Homer lived in 850 BC. Alexander came to India in 340 BC and our friend Valmiki lived some time after all this and had the benefit of knowledge of existence of Iliyad and Odyssy and had the inspiration to pen his epic in the short but complex anushtup metre in Sanskrit.

    Dear Sir, This is one line of argument about the epic which looks at the epic from the angle of the beginingless and endless continum called TIME to the exclusion of every thing else that is associated with the epic. So I start with the question ‘what if’. Yes.What if the epic was indeed a story borrowed from the folklore? What if the grammatical anushtup metre verse form had its inspiration from the Hexameter verse form of ancient Greece? Though I have differences about your interpretation of the origin of the epic, its being a mirror image of Iliyad or Odyssy in its form etc., I am not questioning you about that now. I am leaving it aside. I take something else in your interpretation which is altogether different. You are trying to reduce the epic Ramayana to a mere chronicle/a folk lore whereas it is for millions of Indians the story of how God came to earth as an avatar and lived here.







    The moss covered rocks that you have dismissed with disdain pertains to the faith of millions of people in Bharathvarsh. As different from the God idea that exists in other faiths, the Hindu faith had always been responding to the needs of the faithfull followers with many personal Godheads.
    (1) You can be a very well educated and well informed individual delving deep into its vedas and upanishads and indulging in study and discussion of the brain teasing but empty advaita
    (2) You can be a Rshi who has given up interest in worldly possessions and is engaging in deep meditation to ‘realize’.
    (3)You may not be that fortunate and happen to be an ordinary Hindu who has a need to have some tangible form of the God idea so that he can pray and ask for forgivence of all his misdeeds (because ethics and morals are common for every one)
    (4)You may be an unlettered labourer who subsists but who at the end of the day remembers that he has some surplus to spend and wants to imitate his master and so looks to a God to whom he can offer a cigar and a bottle of Toddy(because they are the luxuries that he can think of)

    All the above four category of people have an opportunity to have a Godhead of their liking in the Hindu religion. It is here that Rama the hero of the Epic Ramayana comes in. Whether there existed a Rama in flesh and blood at any time on this earth is of no consequence to the Hindus who worship him as God. When there was a need to have the God idea represented in anthropomorphic form there was no better way than to take a leaf from the folk lore and adopt its best hero with all kalyana gunas as the God. The Icon Rama with bow and arrow may not be very important but the idea he represents is important. He is the God idea for millions in the anthropomorphic form which is easy to understand, comprehend and deal with. This form and many other forms –including the rarefied form of nirguna brahmam-are the representation of God and that transformed Ramayana from just another Iliyad or Odyssey to a religious itihasa. I can give you here the complete idea I have tried to convey, by these simple tamil words. While explaining what the five forms of the God are Pillailokacharyar says:

    பூகத ஜலம் போலே அந்தர்யாமித்துவம்; ஆவரண ஜலம்போலே பரத்துவம்; பாற்கடல் போலே வியூகம்; பெருக்காறு போலே விபவம்; அதிலே தேங்கின மடுக்கள் போலே அர்ச்சாவதாரம்.

    I can further elaborate on this with his own words but the post will become very lengthy. If our erudite Sangom Sir, keeps ruminating about the universal consciousness spoken about by Sankara while refusing to accept that there can be a God, my friend Vedabhothakam Arulsingh keeps thinking about the significance of the three entities spoken about in Bible –the Father , the Son and the Holy Ghost, and my another friend Khursheed Ahmed keeps wondering secretly what his God will look like. I am free from all this pain. I worship Rama my personal God with full faith. I am at peace with myself. This is not a peace I got in exchange for any compromise. With all the intellect that God has given me I have understood the complexity of the problem well and yet has chosen the பெருக்காற்றில் தேங்கிய மடுவான அர்ச்சாவதாரம் deliberately as it makes excellent sense to me. And so dear Sir, all that is said in Ramayana makes sense too to me. It is not moss accumulated over millennia. Ramanuja, by the way, did not discard all the time-honored views. It was not as if he threw overboard everything which was time-honored and made path-breaking new discovery of a religion. It appears you have a penchant for getting recruited to anything new just because it is new.



    Again TIME. It is very convenient. As if a beauty of yesterday can not remain a beauty today because of TIME. Opinions and views have to be condemned for their being OLD (a derivative of TIME). The west is indeed rational and logical and that is why they had pogroms, apartheid and Hiroshima and Nagasaaki inflicted on the humanity. They are rational that is why they have suicide cults killing themselves or have KKK killing others for silly reasons of color of skin. They are very logical and that is why the briefcase with the button is carried by their chieftains wherever they go-it needs just a push of the button to let loose thermo nuclear and other WMDs on “enemies”. Please understand that west is just a direction and the people who live there are having all the weaknesses that the people in East south and north have. I have personal experience dealing with some of those from the “west” with hare brains who were stupidity personified.

    And my friend Prasad said in #30

    We are, I think, talking here about India which was once the geographical area called Bharathvarsh.

    Cheers.
    Dear Shri Raju,

    A very excellent post, from the pov of yourself and people who think on similar lines. But I feel that the vast majority of people who will reserve a cigar and a bottle of toddy at the end of a hard day's work, to offer to Rama, will not be disturbed by what discussions go on in this internet forum. I also doubt very much whether people like you will allow the cigar and toddy into the Rama temple/s.

    The truth seems to me to be that people like you cannot take criticism of any sort which perhaps have the effect of shaking your own weakly built belief system. Therefore, you keep your own kind of briefcase with a push-button so that such kind of verbal WMD can be unleashed on any one who writes anything not acceptable to you.

    You have no logical arguments to show that my views about Ramayana are erroneous; your only threat is that millions of people hold a different view and so I also should fall in line. In what way is this different from the religious intolerance we witness in some other religions?

    Let the members who feel the same way as you do, write to shri Praveen to ban me. That will be a good idea, is it not?
    Last edited by sangom; 23-12-2012 at 10:22 PM.
    श्रेयो भूयात् सकलजनानाम् ।
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  14. #58
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    Dear Sangom Sir,

    Again I am disappointed. You did not get me right.

    The truth seems to me to be that people like you cannot take criticism of any sort which perhaps have the effect of shaking your own weakly built belief system. Therefore, you keep your own kind of briefcase with a push-button so that such kind of verbal WMD can be unleashed on any one who writes anything not acceptable to you.
    I can repeat the very same sentences to you about your belief system too.

    You have no logical arguments to show that my views about Ramayana are erroneous; your only threat is that millions of people hold a different view and so I also should fall in line. In what way is this different from the religious intolerance we witness in some other religions?
    I have already given my arguments logically to show that your story of Rama being a local chieftain in a folk lore and he was picked up from that to be elevated to God's level by Valmiki and that Valmiki got his inspiration from Homer are all mere speculations. An intelligent mind can make many such speculations and present them as truth. But accepting them as truth or not is in the hands of the audience. I have not expressed my intolerance to your speculation anywhere. I have just said, while speculating it would be better to remain within limits. And I have given my arguments as to why Rama as an avatar is worshiped by Hindus. I do not understand where did you read a fatwa in all this. Did you expect that people will accept as gospel truth every thing you put down here and just say Amen?

    Let the members who feel the same way as you do, write to shri Praveen to ban me. That will be a good idea, is it not?
    Dear Sangom Sir,I respect you for your views and the way you express them. But please understand that criticism of your view is not an attack on you personally. I do not feel so insecure about my views that I should request for banning you. And about the other members who think like me please understand I am a lone wolf and I do not gang up. I do not even respond to the likes my posts receive. So there is no elaborate scheming. I am writing this here because you as well as some other members here have frequently referred to the likes that posts receive and have used downright insulting terms like jalras in that context. If you have doubts about my claim you can refer to Praveen by a PM and check up whether I have a gang here. Please continue with your posts as they give a completely different perspective to the subjects. But, without getting offended, please let me also present my hard hitting counters. I believe there is enough space in this forum for both the views.

    Cheers.
    Last edited by suraju06; 24-12-2012 at 08:15 AM.
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  16. #59
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    The thread is about Teaching Morals Of Ramayana To Kids.

    Morals are taught from stories. Not beliefs.

    So the question of Beliefs Vs History does not arise. Story is what is written What we have done is to point out how difficult it is to teach morals from Ramayana.

    It is difficult but not impossible.

    But you have to be very selective in choosing the stories/episodes.

    Valmiki portrays Rama not as a supernatural being, but as a human with all the attendant shortcomings, who encounters moral dilemmas but who overcomes these by simply adhering to the dharma--the righteous way. There are several instances narrated in Valmiki Ramayana which cast shadows on the pristine character of the hero and reinforce the theme of Ram struggling with mortal flaws and prejudices whilst struggling to follow the path of dharma. When Rama killed Vali ( See Vali vadha for a detailed description of the event) to aid Sugriva regain his throne, it was not in fair combat, but while hiding behind a tree. When Sita was freed from Ravana's prison, Rama forced Sita to undergo an ordeal by fire to prove her purity and later as the king, Rama killed the Shudra Shambuka for performing a yogic penance not in keeping with his perceived low station in the society, though this latter incident is contested and may have crept in because of reinterpretation later on.
    From Yahoo Answers
    யான் பெற்ற இன்பம் பெறுக இவ்வையகம் . Sorry. No one should have similar experience here.
    ...

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  18. #60
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    The thread is about Teaching Morals Of Ramayana To Kids.

    Morals are taught from stories. Not beliefs.

    So the question of Beliefs Vs History does not arise. Story is what is written What we have done is to point out how difficult it is to teach morals from Ramayana.

    It is difficult but not impossible.

    But you have to be very selective in choosing the stories/episodes.

    Valmiki portrays Rama not as a supernatural being, but as a human with all the attendant shortcomings, who encounters moral dilemmas but who overcomes these by simply adhering to the dharma--the righteous way. There are several instances narrated in Valmiki Ramayana which cast shadows on the pristine character of the hero and reinforce the theme of Ram struggling with mortal flaws and prejudices whilst struggling to follow the path of dharma. When Rama killed Vali ( See Vali vadha for a detailed description of the event) to aid Sugriva regain his throne, it was not in fair combat, but while hiding behind a tree. When Sita was freed from Ravana's prison, Rama forced Sita to undergo an ordeal by fire to prove her purity and later as the king, Rama killed the Shudra Shambuka for performing a yogic penance not in keeping with his perceived low station in the society, though this latter incident is contested and may have crept in because of reinterpretation later on.
    From Yahoo Answers
    யான் பெற்ற இன்பம் பெறுக இவ்வையகம் . Sorry. No one should have similar experience here.
    ...

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