What is Ram Navami and How is this festival celebrated in India?

Ram Navami is a Hindu festival that commemorates the birth of Lord Ram, the seventh incarnation of Lord Vishnu. The festival is observed on the ninth day of the Chaitra month (March–April) of the Hindu calendar. Ram Navami is celebrated throughout India, but it is a grand affair in Ayodhya, the birthplace of Lord Ram. On this day, devotees throng to the Ram Temple and offer special prayers. The Ramayan Path is recited and bhajans are sung in praise of Lord Ram.

A special feature of Ram Navami celebrations in Ayodhya is the Ram-Leela, a dramatic enactment of the life of Lord Ram. This is followed by a grand procession of Lord Ram, Sita, Lakshman, and Hanuman, which is taken out through the streets of Ayodhya. Devotees also observe a fast on this day and break it only after offering special prayers to Lord Ram.


When Is Ram Navami?

On the ninth day of the Chaitra month, Ram Navami is observed. On the Gregorian calendar, this often occurs in March or April. The date of Ram Navami in 2023 is March 30.


What is The History of Ram Navami?

Ram Navami is a relatively new festival, only gaining popularity in the last few hundred years. It is thought to have come from Uttar Pradesh, an Indian state. The festival celebrates the birth of Ram, the seventh avatar of the god Vishnu.

Ram is a central figure in the Hindu epic Ramayana. The Ramayana tells the story of Ram's battle against the demon king Ravana. Ravana had kidnapped Ram's wife Sita and taken her to his kingdom in Lanka. Ram and his army of monkeys fought their way to Lanka and defeated Ravana, rescuing Sita in the process.

The Ramayana is a popular story in India and is often recited or performed during the Ram Navami festival.


What is the Story of Ram Navami?

The story of Ram Navami begins with the birth of the god Rama. Rama was the son of the king of Ayodhya, Dasharatha. Dasharatha had three wives but was unable to have children. He consulted with his priests, who advised him to perform a fire sacrifice. This sacrifice would give him a son. Dasharatha followed the priests' advice, and Rama was born. Rama was the incarnation of the god Vishnu, and is therefore sometimes referred to as 'the lord of creation.'

As Rama grew up, he proved to be a wise and just ruler. He was eventually forced to leave Ayodhya, however, when his stepmother, Kaikeyi, demanded that her son, Bharata, be made king in his place. Rama went into exile, accompanied by his wife Sita and his brother Lakshmana. Sita was taken hostage by the demon king Ravana when she was in exile. Rama fought a great battle against Ravana and eventually rescued Sita.


How Is Ram Navami Celebrated?

Ram Navami is celebrated with special puja (prayer) ceremonies in temples across India. Statues or images of Ram are also worshipped in homes and businesses. Many Hindus fast during Ram Navami, and some give up meat and alcohol for the day.

In some parts of India, particularly in the state of Maharashtra, processions are held in Ram's honor. These processions often include music and dance.


What is the Significance of Ram Navami?

Ram Navami is significant for Hindus because it celebrates the birth of one of their most important deities. Rama is considered to be an avatar of Vishnu, and his story is an important part of Hindu mythology. The festival is also a time for Hindus to reflect on the principles of truth, justice, and righteousness that Rama embodied.


How do you celebrate Ram Navami?

Here are some tips:


1. Take a holy bath after rising early.


2. Wear clean and traditional clothes.


3. Offer prayers to Lord Ram.


4. Chant Ram mantra or sing devotional songs.


5. Read the Ramayana or listen to it being recited.


6. Take a holy dip in a river or tank.


7. Prepare and enjoy special dishes.


8. Visit a temple or have a Ram puja performed at home.


9. Exchange greetings with family and friends.


What are some popular Bhoog dishes prepared for Ram Navami?

Some of the popular book dishes that are prepared on Ram Navami include:


1. Sabudana Khichdi:

This is a dish made from soaked sabudana (tapioca pearls), potatoes, and peanuts. It is a very popular dish during Navratri and is also made on Ram Navami.


2. Samak Rice:

Samak rice is a type of healthy, gluten-free rice that is often eaten during religious fasting periods. It is made by boiling rice with a spice known as Samak.


3. Fruit Salad:

A healthy and refreshing fruit salad is a must on any festive occasion. On Ram Navami, a fruit salad is often made with a mix of fresh fruits like grapes, apples, bananas, pomegranates, etc.


4. Kheer:

Kheer is a popular Indian dessert made with milk, rice, and sugar. It is usually flavored with cardamom, saffron, and nuts. Kheer is often made on religious occasions like Ram Navami.


5. Puri:

Puri is a type of fried bread that is often served with curry or gravy. It is a popular dish on Ram Navami and is often made with whole wheat flour.


What are some popular Ram Navami Gifts?

Some of the popular Ram Navami gifts include:


1. Silver coins or utensils:

Silver is considered to be a very auspicious metal and is often given as a gift on religious occasions like Ram Navami.


2. Books on Ramayana:

The Ramayana is a sacred Hindu epic that tells the story of Lord Ram. Books on this epic are often given as gifts on Ram Navami.


3. idols of Lord Ram:

Idols and statues of Lord Ram are also popular gifts at this festival.


4. Ram Navami puja kits:

These kits contain all the items required for performing the Ram Navami puja. They are often given as gifts to those who are observing the fast on this day.


What are some Ram Navami Activities?

Ram Navami Activities:


1. Worshipping Lord Ram:

On this day, devotees offer special prayers and pujas to Lord Ram.


2. Reading the Ramayana:

It is considered auspicious to read or listen to the Ramayana on Ram Navami.


3. Fasting:

On this day, a lot of devotees fast.


4. Visiting Temples:

Temples dedicated to Lord Ram are thronged by devotees on Ram Navami.


5. Processions:

Devotees take out processions carrying Lord Ram’s idol through the streets.


What are some Ram Navami Songs?

Ram Navami Songs:


1. “Sri Rama Jayam”:

This is a very popular Ram Navami song that is sung in praise of Lord Ram.


2. “Jai Jai Ram”:

This is another popular song that is sung on Ram Navami.


3. “Ram Navami Aayi Hai”:

This song is a popular folk song from Uttar Pradesh that is sung on Ram Navami.


4. “Hara Hara Mahadeva”:

This song is a popular devotional song that is sung in praise of Lord Shiva.


5. “Bhajan Karo Santoshi Mata Ki”:

This is a popular bhajan or devotional song that is sung on Ram Navami.


What are some Ram Navami Quotes?

Some of the Ram Navami Quotes:


1. 'The day we celebrate the birth of Lord Ram is the day we remember His qualities of truth, justice, and courage.'


2. 'Lord Ram is the embodiment of truth and righteousness. On His birthday, let us remember His teachings and follow His path.'


3. 'Lord Ram is the perfect role model for us to follow. On His birthday, let us take a vow to follow His path of truth and righteousness.'


4. 'Let us celebrate the birth of Lord Ram and remember His qualities of truth, justice, and courage. May He lead us to the righteous way.'


5. 'Wishing you a very happy Ram Navami. May Lord Ram bless you with truth, justice, and courage?'


6. 'The day on which the supreme Lord was born is most sacred and auspicious. It is the day of Ram Navami.'


7. 'Lord Ram is the epitome of truth, righteousness, and morality. He is the ideal king and the perfect human being.'


8. 'On this day, let us remember the great deeds of Lord Ram and strive to follow his path of truth and righteousness.'


9. 'Lord Ram is the light that dispels the darkness of ignorance and leads us to the path of knowledge and wisdom.'