Thousands of years have passed since the advent of the Treta Yuga. Yet, even now, everyone, right from children to elderly people, remember the name of Rama. The glory of Rama’s name is such that it has not diminished even a bit with the passage of time. This truth should be recognised by all. Rama is the name given to a form, but the name Rama is not limited to a form. Atma is Rama, and its true name is Atmarama. Therefore, wherever and whenever you remember the name Rama, Rama is there with you, in you, around you.
Rama is one, whether you identify it with the Atma or with the form installed in your heart. Every year comes the festival of Sri Rama Navami. But we have not so far understood its true significance. You identify Rama with a form. But Rama is not limited to any particular form. It is the name that is latent in your heart. Many changes and variations keep occurring in the world, but the name of Rama is immutable, is eternal, unsullied, and everlasting. Rama was not an ordinary individual. He was verily God, who incarnated on earth for the welfare of mankind. People call God by many names like Rama, Krishna, Easwara, and Mahadeva. They are all the names of one God.
You should recognise the glory of this name. Sage Vasishtha said, “Ramo Vigrahavan
dharma (Rama is the personification of dharma (righteousness)).” Dharma itself incarnated in the form of Rama. You should follow dharma. Which dharma should you follow? Do not follow the dharma associated with your mind. Follow the principle
of dharma that comes from your heart. Sita became the consort of Rama, who was
the personification of dharma. Wherefrom did Sita take birth? Sita was born out of the womb of the earth. Since she was the daughter of the King of Videha, she was also called Vaidehi. This name had great significance, since it means one who transcended the illusion caused by body attachment.
Lord Ram is the seventh incarnation of Lord Vishnu, who takes birth on earth when Adharma over rules Dharma. He protects all his devotees by vanquishing the roots of Adharma. Lord Ram was born on earth to destroy the demon named Ravan.
The occurrence of this syllable in most names used for Rama along with other clues is strongly suggestive that the festival Rama Navami antedates the Ramayana and it must have originated much before the Ramayana, as a ‘Sun-festival’ for invoking the Sun who was recognized as the source of light and heat even in ancient times. Many royal dynasties portrayed symbols of virility like the Sun, Eagle, Lion etc. as their progenitor. Rama’s dynasty considered themselves to have descended from the Sun. This could have led to the tagging on, of Rama’s birthday to a festival devoted to the Sun.
Significantly, the ancient Egyptians termed the Sun as Amon Ra or simply as “Ra.” In Latin the syllable Ra is used to connote light. For example, we have Radiance which emission of light, or Radium which means any substance emitting light or brilliance. The common element is the syllable Ra which in many languages is used to derive words for describing Sun or light.
Triple Power of the Name ‘Rama’
What are the inner meanings of the name Rama? The three syllables ‘R’, ‘A’ and ‘Ma’ indicate the three causes for human birth, namely Papamu (the sins one has committed), Thapamu (the troubles one experiences) and Ajnanamu (one’s ignorance). “Ra” represents the root letter for Agni (fire).“A a” represents the letter for the moon. “Ma” represents the root letter for the sun. What does Agni signify? It destroys everything and reduces it to ashes. The letter “R” has the power to destroy all the sins committed by man. The letter “Aa” (symbolising the moon) has the powers of cooling the fevers man suffers from and conferring peace on him. “Ma” represents the sun who dispels the darkness of ignorance and confers illumination of wisdom. Hence, the word Rama has the right triple power of destroying sins, conferring peace and dispelling ignorance….
Do your Nama-smaranam daily repetition of “OM RAM ” especially in the morning. Namasranam will always protect you as long as you follow dharma. You must become permeated with righteousness (dharma) so that every act is God-worthy. With the sharp chisel of intellect (buddhi), shape the mind (manas) into a perfect image of Dharma-murthi, the idol (or embodiment) of righteousness. Then you will shine with the splendour of the Divine. That is the task you should dedicate yourself to today. But donot hurt anyone mentally or physically and love all.
Today everybody utters “Ram,Ram.” But very few follow the example set by Rama. They are not true devotees of Lord Rama. At best they may be described as “part-time devotees.” True devotion means perpetual remembrance of the Name of the Lord and constant meditation on that Name, cherishing the figure of Sri Rama in the heart.