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Ram Remains Serene In His Majesty
9 August, 2013
Book Review: The Book of Ram by Devdutt bose Pattanaik
The Book of Ram by Devdutt bose Pattanaik: ~~~Ram~remains~serene~in~ his~majesty~~~
Author: Dr. Devdutt Pattanaik
Author, his passions, his career and his versatility: Dr Devdutt Pattanaik (b.1970) is a multi-faceted personality mastering different streams of life. After passing out his MBBS from Grant Medical College, Mumbai, he spent 14 years working in the Pharma and Healthcare companies such as SIRO and Apollo. After that he started afresh as a marketing consultant and got associated with prestigious organizations like Sanofi Aventis and Ernst & Young. He is also a mythologist by passion. He topped the Mumbai University course in Comparative Mythology and lectures extensively on the relevance of sacred symbols, rituals and stories and their significance in modern times. His articles appear regularly in First City magazine (Delhi) and Times of India (Mumbai). He lives in Mumbai. His passion always being mythology drove him to writing and lecturing extensively on relevance of sacred stories, symbols and rituals in modern times. And it is in this capacity that he has joined Future Group as Chief Belief Officer where his role is to help construct the culture of the entire organization. He regularly writes in Economic Times (Corporate Dossier), Times of India (Mumbai), Hindustan Times, First City Magazine and Sunday Midday. His books have been published by VFS, Haworth, Inner Traditions, Indus Source, Penguin India and EastWest Publications displaying his command over writing superbly. Few of his books include: Shiva – an introduction (VFS, India), Vishnu – an introduction (VFS, India), Devi – an introduction (VFS, India), Hanuman – an introduction (VFS, India), Lakshmi – an introduction (VFS, India), Goddesses in India – five faces of the eternal feminine (Inner Traditions, USA), Indian Mythology – Stories, symbols and rituals from the heart of the subcontinent (Inner Traditions, USA), Man who was a woman and other queer tales from Hindu lore (Haworth Publications, USA), Shiva to Shankara – decoding the phallic symbol (Indus Source, India), Myth=Mithya: A Handbook of Hindu Mythology (Penguin, India), The Pregnant King (Penguin, India – this was his first work of fiction), and The Book of Kali (Penguin, India - based on his talks).
The Book: In this book, Dr Devdutt explores the eleven different iconic symbols of Lord Ram presenting relevance of Ram in modern times by examining him in his various roles: as Dashrath’s son, Lakshman’s brother, Vishwamitra’s student, Sita’s husband, Ravan’s enemy, Hanuman’s master, Ayodhya’s king, Vishnu’s incarnation, Valmiki’s inspiration, the Ramayan’s protagonist and Hindutva’s icon. The book tells about various perspectives of Lord Rama as Eka-vachani – the king who keeps his words – always, Eka-bani – an archer who strikes his target perfectly with the first arrow, Eka-patni – a husband who is eternally devoted to his single wife. All his aspects show him as ‘maryada purushottam’ who is perfectly able to balance his life with social values, his Raghu vansh, and the solar dynasty. He is known to be the 7th avatar of Vishnu. Ram word brings peace and harmony in life.
My views: The author doesn’t want to preach via this book. This is a well researched book, which can be kept in one’s personal library, and can be read time and again, whenever a person wants some peace or solacement. This is a though provoking book, with each angle of Ram being reflected clearly that can be carved upon in one’s life. This book answers to many whys and hows, those were unanswered till now. In each man on this earth, there is a part of Ram and Ravan each with varying percentage. Similarly in each woman there is Sita, Ahilya, Surupnakha and Mandodri. A man’s personality has been reflected by many icons – Ram, Lakshman, Hanuman, Angad, Bali, Sugriv, Jatayu, Dashrath, Bharat, Shatrughan, Ravan, Vibhishan etc. similarly woman’s face has been reflected in many icons – Sita, Mandodri, Ahilya, Surupnakha, Mandodri etc. Logically, in today’s world, it is your karmas, or what you do in your actual life, that defines what icon a woman is, and what icon a man is.
The book is a must read, for all ages, all genders. It is short, crisp and with a precision.
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