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Thread: Banishment of Sita

  1. #1

    Banishment of Sita

    Can someone please explain to me the purpose of the banishment of Sita? I also have heard that some Vaishnavs don't take it as true? Regardless, what is Rams basis for her banishment, besides finding her unclean after staying with Ravana?

    Let's chat about this!

    Thanks.
    I am taste in water, son of Kunti,
    I am light in the moon and sun.
    The sacred syllable Om of all the Vedas,
    Sound in ether, manliness in men.
    [vii.8-10]

  2. #2
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    Re: Banishment of Sita

    I don't know much, I'm not a Vaishnava, but I believe Rama sent Sita away not because he found her unclean but because some among his subjects did. Because he was a good king, he exiled Sita to placate his subjects. >.> As I am not a Vaishnava, I find it what Rama did distasteful and I know many Indian women who view him as a horrific husband. Men want to be like him but women do not want to be like Sita! They do not want to be married to a man like Rama! I am also told it is seen as bad luck to name a person Sita because of the suffering she endured during her life.

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    Re: Banishment of Sita

    NamastÚ,

    A while back, I went looking for information on this very topic, and found a very interesting, detailed writing that stuck with me. The author does not claim to have the absolute truth of the matter, but rather to explain and explore some ideas about why everything unfolded as it did. Perhaps it will help with the question, as it did for me.

    http://prekshaa.blogspot.com/2010/03/abandoning-of-sita.html

    Indraneela
    ===
    Oṁ Indrāya Namaḥ.
    Oṁ Namaḥ Śivāya.

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    Re: Banishment of Sita

    The link provided by Indraneela, provides a beautiful analysis of the decision taken.

    The broad aspect of this decision is the two characters : King and Husband.

    The Dharma of the two are different and their subjects are also different. However the difficulty or conflict comes when these two characters are in one body.

    That is why we are unable to distinguish the justice behind this. As most of the time we look from Husband POV or a confused (whether husband or King) POV.

    The fact that the Avataras descend to restablish the rule of justice should be kept in the background to analyse the incident.

    Any incident looks different - when percieved from Micro POV and Macro (holistic) POV.

    The whole of Hinduism encourages us to move our POV from the micro to Macro level (Biswarupa darshan - to percieve the entirity in the mind) and then derive the micro levels.

    Love and best wishes

  5. #5

    Re: Banishment of Sita

    Namaste WTyler,

    It is important to realize that Sri Ram knew that Sita was pure, but it was many, if not most, of the people of Ayodhya who believed her to be impure.

    In order to perform his dharma as king, Sri Ram banished Sita to the forest. Sri Ram was the perfect embodiment of all aspects of dharma. Even though he knew with 100% certainty that Sita was pure, the people of his kingdom did not believe so and that would have created social unrest and upset the moral fabric of the kingdom. As king, it was his duty to put his people above the interests of himself.

    There was also the option of abandoning the throne and going into exile with Sita, but by doing that he would have been abandoning his dharma as King.

    I think above all, this whole situation shows how performing one's dharma does not always seem pleasurable and happy. Imagine how Sri Ram must have felt to banish his dear wife even though he knew that she was pure. But he also knew that he was a King above all, and that he had to perform his dharma as king. And he executed it perfectly. Remember, in the end they are united once again in perfect bliss, although to each other, Rama and Sita never are and were never separated.

    Jai Sri Ram
    Sanatana Dharma ki Jai!
    Jai Hanuman

  6. #6

    Re: Banishment of Sita

    Namaste DK,

    Quote Originally Posted by Divine Kala View Post
    As I am not a Vaishnava, I find it what Rama did distasteful and I know many Indian women who view him as a horrific husband. Men want to be like him but women do not want to be like Sita! They do not want to be married to a man like Rama! I am also told it is seen as bad luck to name a person Sita because of the suffering she endured during her life.
    This is interesting, I never knew that. It is my understanding that Sri Ram was an example of the perfect man and Sita was an example of the perfect woman. They both are embodiments of perfection and dharma.

    Certainly if I was a woman, I would want to be married to God incarnate, to a perfect man such as Sri Ram!

    Jai Sri Ram
    Sanatana Dharma ki Jai!
    Jai Hanuman

  7. #7

    Re: Banishment of Sita

    Thank you for your replies!

    Just how were they reunited? Believe it or not, the version I read completely omitted her banishment. She was fire tested and then the lived happily ever after. In the banishment versions I just heard she was sent back to mother earth, were they reunited once he "died"?
    I am taste in water, son of Kunti,
    I am light in the moon and sun.
    The sacred syllable Om of all the Vedas,
    Sound in ether, manliness in men.
    [vii.8-10]

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    Re: Banishment of Sita

    Here is a different take on the issue.

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    Re: Banishment of Sita

    Quote Originally Posted by Ramakrishna View Post
    Namaste DK,



    This is interesting, I never knew that. It is my understanding that Sri Ram was an example of the perfect man and Sita was an example of the perfect woman. They both are embodiments of perfection and dharma.

    Certainly if I was a woman, I would want to be married to God incarnate, to a perfect man such as Sri Ram!

    Jai Sri Ram
    Really? You would want to be forcibly separated from your husband for a year by a man trying to seduce you, refuse his advances in the hopes that you are rescued, be rescued and become pregnant with your husband's child and then be exiled from the kingdom you love (because your love is such for your husband that all that he loves you love) because people doubt you're purity?

    Really?

    You forget that in the end Sita puts her foot down. She has had enough of men telling her what to do and where to be. She calls out to her Mother, the only person who can possibly understand, to be taken home and she leaves.

    Sita seals Rama's doom in the eyes of other women because her patience finally runs out. She does not say 'I will suffer all the injustices heaped upon me until the term of my natural life' she says 'I suffer no more the injustices you have heaped upon me. I go home to my mother, who will accept me whether I am pure or impure, whether I am old or young. I go back to the only being that has always accepted me for what I am and never questioned it'.

    No matter how much you love a person you must eventually put your foot down - there comes a time when you can no longer suffer injustices.

    In the Shaiva tradition, Sati does the very same thing by throwing herself in to the fire of the homa. She says 'enough, if you will not stand up for your honour, and if you, my father, shall continue to offend my husband's - and thereby my own - honour, I shall show you both the folly of your ways'. By self immolating she disappears, yes, but gives herself the chance of a stronger position in the life she takes as Parvati and teaches both Daksha and Shiva important lessons.

  10. #10

    Re: Banishment of Sita

    Namaste

    For all who do not know about the Agni-Sita and Real-Sita : (It is in Kurma Puran and Chaitanya Charitramrut)

    http://www.krishna.com/blog/2009/04/...lord-chaitanya

    The Kūrma Purāṇa states that this shadowy Sītā was placed into a fire as a test of chastity. It was Māyā-sītā who entered the fire and the real Sītā who came out of the fire

    This pastime is elaborated in the Madhya lila of the Caitanya Caritamrita as follows.

    CC Madhya 9.200 -212: There, among the brāhmaṇas, Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu listened to the Kūrma Purāṇa, wherein is mentioned the chaste woman's narration. Śrīmatī Sītādevī is the mother of the three worlds and the wife of Lord Rāmacandra. Among chaste women she is supreme, and she is the daughter of King Janaka.

    When Rāvaṇa came to kidnap mother Sītā and she saw him, she took shelter of the fire-god, Agni. The fire-god covered the body of mother Sītā, and in this way she was protected from the hands of Rāvaṇa.

    Upon hearing from the Kūrma Purāṇa how Rāvaṇa had kidnapped a false form of mother Sītā, Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu became very satisffied.

    The fire-god, Agni, took away the real Sītā and brought her to the place of Pārvatī, goddess Durgā. An illusory form of mother Sītā was then delivered to Rāvaṇa, and in this way Rāvaṇa was cheated.

    After Rāvaṇa was killed by Lord Rāmacandra, Sītādevī was brought before the fire and tested.

    When the illusory Sītā was brought before the fire by Lord Rāmacandra, the fire-god made the illusory form disappear and delivered the real Sītā to Lord.


    -----------

    And, Divine Kala, Sita did not say to BhuDevi (Mother Earth) that please take me away the way i am - pure or impure. She said, "if I am indeed pure, may my Mother, this Earth, take me back in Her veil." As soon as She said that the earth cracked open and let Her in much to the sadness, anger and dismay of Lord RAm and others. The only time that Shri RAm showed anger was at this time - loss of His beloved Sita.

    Remember this is all Leela. Sita is Lakshmi and RAm is Shriman NArAyaN.


    Jai SiyA-RAm
    om namo bhagavate vAsudevAya ~
    || Shri KRshNArpaNamastu ||

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