Sri Rama Navami (Sanskrit:श्री राम नवमि | Hindi: श्री रमा नवमी | Telugu:శ్రీ రామ నవమి | Tamil:ஸ்ரீ ராம நவமி | Kannada:ಶ್ರೀ ರಾಮ ನವಮಿ is the birth anniversary of Sri Rama celebrated by devotees all over India.
On the ninth day of Chaitra month (the first month of a Hindu calender) in the bright fortnight of the Hindu lunar month of Chaitra is referred to as Ram Navami. On this day, when the five planets and the sun, etc. were in the first house of cancer at noon along with the lunar asterism Pushya, Ramachandra was born in Ayodhya. The date of Ramnavami is decided according to the Hindu lunar calendar. As per the Gregorian calendar, the month of Chaitra corresponds to the month of March-April.
According to the great epic Ramayana, once upon a time there lived a King named Dasarath, then king of Ayodhya, who had three wives named Kausalya, Sumithra and Kaikeyi. As even long after his marriages, Dasarath was not blessed with a child, this has become a question of worry for him. Even the people of Ayodhya were disheartened because they had not heir to their kingdom. At this stage, Rishi Vasistha suggests Dasarath to perform Puthra Kamesti Yagna, through which he can have a desired child.
Soon King Dasharath agreed to do the Yagya and headed to Maharshi Rushya Shrunga’s ashram, to get him for performing the yagya. Maharshi agreed and accompanied Dasharath to Ayodhya to solemnize the perform Puthra Kamesti Yagna. As the result of yagna, Yagneshwar appeared and hands Dasarath a bowl of kheer and asked him to feed this to his three wives. Dasarath did the same. He gave one half of the kheer to his elder wife Kausalya, and another half to his younger wife Kaikeyi. These two gave one half each of their kheer to Sumithra.
On the ninth day (Navami) of Chaithra Masa (first month in Hindu calendar), at noon Kausalya gave birth to Lord Sri Ram, Kaikeyi gave birth to Bharath, and Sumithra gave birth to twins, Lakshman and Shatrughan. It was the day of joyous celebrations in Ayodhya.
This day since then is celebrated as an auspicious occasion by the devotees.
- Holy festival when it is celebrated individually;
- Religious festival (utsav): when celebrated collectively;
- Vowed observance (vrat): when performed individually with a resolve (sankalpa).
- Also, unlike most vowed religious observances, which are practiced individually, Sri Rama Navami is a vowed religious observance undertaken by a group.
Cultures , Rituals and Festive:
This festival is celebrated for nine days starting from Chaitra sudda Padyami and ends with Navami day, the Jayanti of Lord Rama. During these nine days, Sri Rama Parayanam is recited and Rama Nama is recited in temples and Sri Rama mandirs. According to ancient texts, Sri Rama Navami is celebrated at noon. This festival is being celebrated in different ways across the country.
The celebrations of Ram Navami are marked by fasting, chanting mantras and singing bhajans in the praise of Lord Rama. Although people in different parts of the country celebrate the festival in their own ways, the thought amongst them remains one and the same – to offer their prayers to the deity and honour his birth. Out of the traditions of Ram Navami, fasting stands out as one of the most popular ones, followed since ages. On the wonderful occasion of Rama Navami, the devotees of Lord Rama observe a whole-day fast, as a part of the festivities.After offering prayers to the deity, they break the fast in the midnight. As this festival falls in the beginning of spring/summer, cool neivedyam/prasad/offerings such as Kosumbari (cucumber salad), panakam(Indian lemonade) and spiced buttermilk are offered.
Significance of Fasting on Sri Rama Navami
Like most of the Hindu festivals, fasting holds special significance in the celebrations of Ram Navami too. It is believed that when a devotee observes fast on Rama Navami, with sincerity and immense devotion, he/she is blessed with health, wealth and prosperity for the year ahead. Therefore, it has been a tradition since a long time to observe fast on the festival. This perception has been supported by the ancient religious texts of Hinduism, according to which, fasting is the only mean of gaining happiness it the material world and achieving salvation at the same time. Moreover, Rama Navami vrat is considered as the five of the most important fasts in the ancient times.
The most popular festival at Bhadrachalam
Sri Rama Navami, is celebrated on every ‘Chaitra Shuddha Navami ‘on the propitious ‘Punarvasu’ -’Janma Nakshatra’ (birth star), of Lord Sri Rama. The Kalyanamahotsavam of Sri Rama with his consort Sita is commemorated as part of the Ram Navami Special event which comes either in the last week of March or first week of April.
Many lakhs of devotees gather during Sri Ram Navami. This divine festival is rejoiced in a dazzling manner accompanied by chanting of hymns by priests in Kalyanamantapam. Richly engraved and exquisite sculptures portray events from our Itihasas and Puranas at the vicinity of stadium.
The Kalyana Mahotsavam is celebrated on the holy occasion between 10 am and 12.30 pm while the sacred Talambralu is showered on the deities exactly at 12 noon. This occasion is specially broadcasted ‘live’ by All India Radio and telecasted as it happens through Doordarshan on the festive day from 10 AM to 12 Noon.