Friday, August 17, 2012

recasting of rAmAyan TV serial

Question: Will it be reasonable to recreate the rAmAyana TV serial, with narration from rAmcharit mAnas of gOsWAmi tulsidAs?

yb's personal opinion: vAlmiki rAmAyan is believed to be the Adi kAvya (first book/poetical work) of India. We, naturally, expect it to have less number of insertions and interpolations, when compared to subsequent works which are only free translations of the first book.

I have great respect for tulsIdas. He was the greatest poet of Hindi language. Nobody doubts his devotion to rAmA. But, this devotion is the very reason for his altering many events of rAmAyan , from the original story built by vAlmiki. The alterations were from a devotional approach, where a devotee wants to see his God as an incarnation of perfection and rectitude.

This desire for depicting one's God as great embodiment of perfection and rectitude, we can see in vAlmiki, but vAlmiki did not consider some sentences and actions of rAma as inappropriate, probably because they were in tune with the expectations of perfectness and rectitude of his days. Such additions and alterations which glorified rAma were apparently made by priests and preachers.

In case of tulsidas, it was inherent in him to see Rama as the ultimate at the zenith of perfection. Hence, the verses of tulsidas were naturally more glorifying and deifying, when compared to vAlmiki's verses. Story-line alterations were also handled in that direction.

Example: vAlmiki did not hesitate to write that Ravana lifted Sita with his left hand holding her hair behind her neck and with his right hand holding her thighs. tulsidas avoided thighs, by changing the narration. Then Sita was kept under the protection of the fire God agni, while some surrogate Sita sat in the Ashoka Gardens of Lanka.

ybremI wish that the new rAmAyana serial which is being recast by door darSan and Z TV should have a base of Sanskrit vAlmiki rAmyANa without alterations. Let the people know what the first poet vAlmiki wrote.

ybremI downloaded to Hindi rAmcharitamAnas with a view to study it in depth. But, I am already 62. It may take another four years to complete the study. Then only I can write something meaningful from that great work. I do not know whether I can do it or not. I do not have rAma or rAvaNa behind me to push me.

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