Ram Navami celebrates the birth of the seventh incarnation of Lord Vishnu. Lord Ram appeared in Ayodhya as the son of King Dasharath and Queen Kaushalya in the Raghu Kula (Solar Dynasty). He was born on the ninth day of Chaitra month in the noon. This day coincides with the ninth day of Chaitra Navratri, on which is the day when the fasting concludes. As per the Gregorian calendar, the festival falls in the month of March or April.
The celebration of Ram Navami is done with devotion and joy. The house is decorated and Deity idols are beautifully decorated with flowers, clothes and jewels. The celebrations include fasting, singing of devotional songs, visiting temple and recitation of hymns from Ram Charitmanas. In some places, the celebrations start from the first day of Chaitra Navratri until Navami. While Ram Lila- a theatrical enactment of Ramayana, recitation of Ramayan, chariot procession of Ram, Sita and Laxman idols is done, discourse on Ramayana by story-tellers and satsangs are organized at few places.
Importance of celebration on the ninth day of Chaitra month
As per the Hindu lunisolar calendar, when Deities incarnate on a particular day, the principles (energies) of particular Deity is active on earth on that day. On Ram Navami, the Ram principles are more active throughout the Universe. The divine consciousness and energies of Lord Ram are thousand times more active and emit its energies in high proportion on this day as compared to other days. Thus worshipping Lord Ram with devotion and celebrating the festival helps us derive optimum benefits and help imbibe His divine principles.
Reasons we celebrate the festival every year
Lord Ram is a Maryada Purushotam, an ideal person. He is ever compassionate, gentle, brave and righteous. He teaches the world through his life story to always choose and walk in the path of Dharma regardless of the struggles and challenges. Ram Navami celebration is the celebration of the virtues of Rama. It is about remembering his ways of righteousness and worshipping Him for His divine grace to enable us to attain perfection. Ram Navami celebration is also done to remember and honour Lord Ram for Ram Rajya, the peaceful days of Lord Ram’s sovereignty. Prayers are offered to the great king requesting for same positivity in life which prevailed during the Ram Rajya.
Significance of the few rituals
On this day, fast is observed throughout the day to purify the body, soul and mind. It naturally prepares the mind to focus the mind on the divinity of Lord Ram and experience the joy within.
Few people recite the Ramarakshastotra during the nine days for eleven times. It provides immense benefits like prosperity, relief from ailments and speech impairments and protection.
Listening or reading Ramayana and watching Ramleela with utmost devotion and alertness are highly beneficial. It reminds one of the valiant and brave qualities of Ram and inspires us to lead our life as per Dharma.
A spiritual discourse of Lord Ram’s birth ios conducted in the afternoon. A coconut draped in cloth signifying Lord Ram or His idol is in placed in a cradle and gently rocked while singing songs describing His birth are sung. This fills the heart and mind with purity, love and sense of happiness.
So, ideally, Ram Navami is celebrated to end the negativity and dullness in life and begin it with positivity. And also draw inspiration to lead a life of righteousness.