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June 7, 2014 / subramanyam

A fantastic book I read in the recent past.


 

          Was blessed to read the fantastic book, The rise of the Sun Prince by Shri Shubha Vilas Das. This book is the first book in the series “Ramayana : The Game of Life” by the author. This is a book on Ramayana and the lessons one can learn from it.

          Now how many times would we have heard about Ramayana, we hear about it everyday. People who were born some 2-3 decades ago would have grown  up hearing those stories or watching Ramayana in their TV screens. However, how many of us really know what Ramayana is trying to teach us? Many of us consider Ramayana as a sacred book, that thought process is excellent, but then how may of us really delve into the depths of the book and try and understand TheRamayana01Frontcoverwhat Ramayana is teaching us ?

           “Ramayana” is Ramasya ayana. Ayana means walk, Ramasya Ayana means the walk of Lord SriRama. Why is the walk of Lord SriRama important ? It is important because satyam and dharmam were visible in each and every step of his. There are many lessons of life hidden inside this great scripture, it was the guiding light for many people in this country during the yester years. Today we are slowly drifting away from it.

          At this juncture Sri Shubha Vilas Das’s “Ramayana : The game of life” series and the first book of the series “The rise of the Sun Prince” makes a lot of sense. While we have a lot of books on Ramayana, getting an as is translation to the original is tough. Then getting the interpretation to the events and getting pointers on how we can implement the learnings in our daily lives is very very tough these days.

          Shubha Vilas Das in his book, tried to be as close to the original Valmiki Ramayana as possible. He took a few things from Kamba Ramayanaa too but then that does not kill the sanctity of the Valmiki Ramayana. This book is based on the Balakanda of Sri Ramayana. In this we see SriRama’s childhood, Viswamitra’s mentorship, the life events of a lot Ikshwaaku kings, Important things like Kumara Sambhavam,  Ganagavataranam and Sri Rama Kalyanam. Shubha Vilas has really taken great care and brought all of them as is from the original scriptures and added some good interpretations when needed.  Having read the original BalaKanda of Ramayana, I can reiterate that this book has very few deviations from the original one. There are excellent laws which Shubha Vilas Das brings to light as he proceeds from chapter to chapter. This to me is a hallmark of the book.

 

          The language of book is simple english and it makes reading the book all the way more enjoyable. Almost in every page, after every section we see Shubha Vilas coming up with an interpretation that will throw more light on the background or the salient points that one ought to take home from the book. Very nice way to bring the original text, interpretations and background stories in a single place.

          I started of this post by saying that I was blessed to read this book, yes I mean it. We are living in an age where we are slowly but steadily losing touch with our own epics,we are drifting away from our own scriptures and our own treasures . In this era where materialistic success is the only measure for a man’s achievements, in this age when finances are controlling most of the decisions of life, in this era where the respect for the parents and elders is slowly becoming shaky , in these times when broken marriages are on the rise , its in these times that we need Ramayana more, it’s in these times that we need to learn the life truths from Sri Rama’s life and imbibe those truths in our lives. Shubha Vilas Das ji has done a great job by writing a book that appeals to the modern audience as well. We all need to use this opportunity and learn more things from Sri Ramayana and imbibe them in our lives. We would all be doing ourselves and this universe a great favor by doing this.

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