For Hindus, he is the God himself, for non-Hindus, he is a legendary figure, and for all of us his believers, he is the ideal man, a complete man, and perfection personified. That’s the reason he’s called Maryada Purushottam – the man who is supreme in honor and righteousness. And about five lesser known facts about Lord Ram, I will write down today. So, let’s have a look at some fascinating facts about Lord Shree Ramachandraji and I hope this knowledge will bring you closer to the Hindu religion’s facts, closer to God, and will enrich your knowledge about the same. Let’s begin!
1. Lord Ram Is Not A Poorna Avatar(Complete Incarnation)
Now before many of you start feeling that I am trying to say that Lord Ram was any less, let me tell you that you are mistaken. Because Lord Ram is complete and absolute; he is the Lord himself and everything is in him, from him. However, when I say that he is not a complete incarnation, I imply that he possessed the 14 out of 16 Kalas or qualities in him and 2 were not to be seen. Now there is a reason behind it. Although he is a god, why he doesn’t possess all the 16 qualities that are there in Lord Vishnu, whose incarnation Lord Ram is? The reason is, that Lord Ram appeared on this earth to safeguard the righteousness and annihilate the evil, by killing the demon Ravan. And since Ravan had a boon that he could be killed by a man and not a God, Lord Ram had to come like a man in this world. And THAT is the reason why Lord Ram never displayed the remaining two qualities. For if he would, he could no more be called a man born of a man. The two qualities that he never showed were Paripurna & Swarupavasthitha. And the result of the absence of these Kalas could be seen on incidents such as the moment when Lord Ram cried when Maa Sita was abducted by the demon king Ravan, and when he took the aid of monkeys and bears and other beings in his journey to cross the ocean and annihilate the evil; these(crying and taking help from others) are qualities, emotions, and actions that we humans display, not God, and the reason Lord did it was that he was here as a human to kill Ravan. So basically, he had all the qualities, but he never displayed those just to respect the boon received by Ravan from Brahma to be killed by a man.
Trivia: The remaining two qualities along with others were present in the next incarnation of Lord Vishnu, Lord Shree Krishnaji which is why he is called a Poorna-avatar, God almighty, and Parabrahma, the supreme soul who is the cause of all!
2. Lord Ram’s Weapon And Height
Lord Ram is a master of multiple weapons of diverse powers. He can make oceans dry, he can destroy the whole creation with his single arrow, and he can make any of his opponents cry – Rodayati Nishacharan Yah Sa Rudrah. But it is not the reason why he is God; in fact, since he IS God, he holds such divine powers. But majorly, what we see him holding in his hand in pictures is his legendary Bow known as Sharanga, the Bow of Lord Vishnu. But there’s an interesting incident that tells how Lord Ram got this Sharanga bow in his human form. The story is like this – when Shree Ram went to Mithila(modern-day Nepal) in Maa Sita’s Swayamvar, he was required to tie the string of the legendary bow of Lord Shiva to win Maa Sita’s hand in marriage. While tying the string, the bow broke and he could now marry his divine consort, Maa Sita.
Now as per Valmiki Ramayan, when Shree Ram was going back to Ayodhya with all his brothers and family, Parshuram encountered him and stopped his way, as he was extremely furious as the bow of Lord Shiva was given to him which he had given to king Janak(Maa Sita’s father) for keeping it safe. He was angry at the man who had broken it. In his angry conversation, when he sensed that Ram was no ordinary a man, he asked Shri Ram to hold the famous Sharanga bow of Lord Vishnu which was with Parshuram at that time (I will write about this story in the upcoming post) and pull an arrow on it. Lord Ram, being the Lord who is God yet simplicity personified, did what was asked, and Parshuram finally realized that Ram was none other than the preserver of the creation, Lord Vishnu. It is also said that he actually saw Vishnu in Ram. The very moment, Parshuram gave the bow to Shree Ram, to whom it belonged, and asked him to use it in his Ram avatar.
And that is how Lord Ram received his weapon, his bow from Parshuram, who too was an incarnation of Lord Vishnu, although not a complete incarnation.
But as to the weapon that Ram used to kill Ravana, it was another weapon, a divine bow that was given to him by sage Agastya when the former was in his exile period. Along with the bow, Agastya gave Lord Ram a divine quiver which would never run out of arrows.
And after the meeting of Ram and Parshuram, the Sharanga remained with Lord Ram.
Lord Ram’s HEIGHT is something that we can quite often see people discussing. Especially when people call him Aajaanubaahu. Here, people sometimes mistake this name with the one who is very tall with broad shoulders where in reality, this name is used for the one who has hands long enough to reach his knees. And it is needless to say that we all know and have read it at many places that Shree Ram has hands that reach to his knees.
Actually, in Ramayana, Shree Ram is said to be of a height of 4 Kishkus, where,
1 Kishkus = 24 inches; So,
4 Kishkus = 96 inches = 8 feet.
So Shree Ram is considered to be 8 feet in height. Although in some references, he is considered to be 10 or 12 feet tall, depending upon the religious text which is under the discussion. And trust me, it is one of the lesser known facts about Lord Ram.
Interestingly, if he was 8 feet tall, we can say that his bow must have been around 10 feet or so. Mighty and magnificent I must say!
3. Lord Ram And A Squirrel
How can I not include the story of a small squirrel amongst the five lesser known facts about Lord Ram? So, when Lord Ram was creating a bridge to cross the ocean to set foot in Lanka, all the creatures nearby were helping him vigorously. Not only monkeys and bears, but deers, tortoises, ocean entities, and birds like vultures were there among many.
Amidst all of them, there could be seen a squirrel who was holding a small pebble to through it in the ocean to create the bridge. Suddenly, when monkeys and other beings saw the squirrel, they burst out laughing, mocked the squirrel, and made the fun of the little being on its petty contribution in the noble cause. The squirrel felt hurt and became sad. However, God was around her in the very manifested form and couldn’t see her sorrow. Lord Ram took the small squirrel in his hands and caressed it, asking her not to be sad as she was God’s creation too and was no less important either in creating the bridge or in its existence in the world. He told the squirrel that it too was very crucial in the process. The monkeys and others around realized their mistake and repented.
While caressing the squirrel, Shree Ram brushed the back of the squirrel with his three fingers and it is said my friends that that is the reason why we see the three lines or strokes in black on the back of squirrels to this day. Yes, the three black lines on white squirrels’ back are the mark left by Shree Ram in the Treta Yug – the mark of affection and love towards the smallest of entities created by God.
And this way, Shree Ram delivered a tremendous motivational lesson as well, that no matter how small you are, or how small your contribution in a cause is, you and your hard work matters along with your existence. He taught that God has created each being for a reason and each one of us matters in this world.
4. Lord Ram’s Death/ His Decision To Go Back. How He Distracted Hanuman?
According to Ramayan, Lord Shri Ram ruled for long 11,000 years. But there came a time when he realized that it was time for him to end his leela (his divine and pleasing deeds on this earth). Maa Sita had already left the earth long back and had gone back to Baikuntha Lok(the place where Lord Vishnu resides with Maa Lakshmi) via mother earth. But how was he going to convince Hanuman? Since Shree Ram was on earth as a human, he needed to co-ordinate with Yamaraj(deity of death in Hinduism) to end his leela. But Hanuman would never let Yama enter the vicinity where Lord Ram would be.
However, Lord Ram is almighty. One day, he took off his ring and dropped it inside a crack in the earth and asked Hanuman to get his ring back. Innocent and obedient Hanumanji obeyed and went inside the crack which was deep enough to take him to the underworld/Paataal Lok/Naag Lok(the abode of snakes) where he asked the king of serpents where the ring of Lord Ram was. The king understood the whole scenario and showed Hanumanji a valley of rings where innumerable identical rings could be seen. Each ring was identical and resembled the ring of Shree Ram. Hanumanji got confused! And then, king of serpents told him that Shri Ram is eternal- he is without a beginning or an end. He told that –
Shree Ram takes birth not once but in each and every cycle of this creation. It means that after the whole creation ends and begins once again, then all four Yuga start all over again. And then, in Tretayug, Lord Ram takes birth each time with his consort Maa Sita and the leela begins all over again. And whenever he wishes to end his leela of Tretayug, he drops the ring in this crack to distract Hanuman. Because guess what, Hanuman too is there in each manifestation of Shree Ram, like other characters of Ramayan. That is the reason there are so many rings there. Hanuman got astonished. Although he knew that Lord Ram is God, he got even more surprised to know that Lord Ram has taken so many avatars again and again, by seeing the numbers of rings.
5. Lord Ram’s Journey Back To The Baikuntha. His Order For Lakshman’s Death!
So now when 11,000 years passed, Yamaraj/Kaal went to meet Lord to remind him that he has been sent by Brahmaji to remind the lord that to let the world run according to the plan of creation by Brahmaji, he would have to end his residency on earth. Now let me clarify that Lord Ram is omniscient and he knows everything and doesn’t need any reminder, but he does so just to gives others the golden opportunity to be a part of his leela.
So Kaal/Yamaraj went to meet Shree Ram in a form of a sage, a rishi. Before starting the meeting, he put forward a condition that he wanted to have a word with Shree Ram in private and to maintain the secrecy of the topic that would be under the discussion, Lord Ram will give death sentence to anyone who will interrupt their meeting. Shree Ram agreed. He gave the responsibility of keeping a guard at the door to his beloved, obedient brother Lakshman. At the same time sage Durvasa, known for his fierce anger across the world arrived to meet Shree Ram – again a leela of God!
Sage Durvasa expressed his wish to meet Lord Ram, to Lakshman. And on being denied he threatened to destroy the whole capital city of Ayodhya. Lakshman got confused as to what to do.
As Ayodhya is much more dear to Shree Ram than even the best of the capitals of other universes, Lakshman thought he should tell Shree Ram about Durvasa’s arrival. He went inside the chamber and there it was! Kaal was sitting with Shree Ram in his real form, reminding him about his time on earth.
As per the condition, Shree Ram had to give death sentence to Lakshman, but on sage Vashishta’s insistence, capital punishment was converted into Lakshman being abandoned by Shree Ram forever, because, in those days, these two punishments were considered equal under certain circumstances.
And this is how Lakhmanji who is Sheshnaag incarnated, went inside river Saryu and ended his part of Shree Ram’s leela and went back to Baikuntha.
After some time, Shree Ram too left this earth for Baikuntha, where he met his consort Maa Sita/Maa Lakshmi.
So these were the five lesser known facts about Lord Ram, our beloved Lord Shree Ram, that I thought I should share with you. Hope you liked it. For more, you may drop a comment or a message on my contact section via Instagram, Facebook, or email. Thanks! Jai Shree Ram.