World ? Asia ? India

Rama Navami

3 Apr 2009 (annual)
Rama Navami, birthday of the most cherished Hindu hero-god, is celebrated throughout India on the ninth day (navami means nine) of the lunar month, Chatri. As Swami Vivekananda said, "wherever four Hindus live, Rama and Sita will be there."
The feast of Rama Navami, more important in the north of the country than the south, is the object of great popular devotions, particularly at the temples of Ayodhya and Pondicherry, important sites in the hagiography of the blue-skinned hermit-king.

The Rama Navami celebrations in Ayodha involve thousands of pilgrims, colourful processions, religious plays, prayers and ritual blessings. They peak at noon, when the god is said to have been born.

The feats of Rama, the seventh incarnation of the god Vishnu, are recounted in the Ramayana, one of the great classics of Indian literature. A series of festivals are devoted to various episodes in his life, that of Sita, his saintly wife, and Hanuman, the monkey-king general who assisted Rama in his assault on the citadel of Ravana, the demon king who abducted Sita.
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