An Essay On My Favorite Book

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I am fond of reading books. I have read a good number of novels, dramas, short stories and poems. Some books merely give enjoyment. There are others which leave a deeper impression on the mind. Some books infuse the spirit of nationalism in the reader. But I have not come across a single book so far, which is so good as the Ramcharitra Manas of Tulsi Das.

Sri Goswami Tulsi Das Ji is the writer of this great epic. Every Indian has read or heard the story of Ram and Sita. The popular story has been narrated in this book in the most beautiful way. The language of the book is avadhi. We are told in it first the reasons for the birth of lord Rama. On the insistence of various gods and goddesses. He came on the earth in the form of a human being to relieve the pain and suffering of the virtuous. This book is divided into various parts. Every part deals with a particular aspect of life or performance of Lord Rama.

Every Indian likes to hear the famous story of Ramcharitra Manas. Some have great faith in it. But my reasons for liking it are quite different. I have found in it, religious, political and social wisdom. It enlightens as well entertains. Indeed, it is a true treasure-house of rare wisdom. I will give here only some of the reasons which have made this book my favourite.

In Hindi Literature it stands at the top. Tulsi Dass Ji has treated all the 'Ras' in it. This is simple. The beauty lies in the fact, that he has not crossed the limit at any stage. The 'Shringar Ras' which makes the poetry romantic, has been used with rare skill. The similes and metaphors stand unparalleled at their own places. The literary Pandits maintain that not a single word of a single line can be replaced by any other word. The superiority of the composition of the book is reflected in this statement.

Hindus accept it as a great religious book. It lays down the rules of conduct for all. It makes everyone believe that the virtuous are always protected by the Lord. The way in which Ravana, the symbol of evil, was defeated is well known to all. How the creator of all, Lord Rama, showered his love on everyone who had a firm faith in him, becomes evident from this book. The stories of poor old Bhilini, "Shavri" and boatman "Kevat", support this statement. Indeed, as a religious book it cannot be surpassed by any other.

The political wisdom of the book is also great. How a good ruler should govern his people becomes clear from the rule of Raja Ram. Even today we aspire to establish Ram Rajya. How a bad ruler becomes the object of contempt of everyone is revealed by the example of Ravana. The way Ram won over the support of Sugriv, Hanuman, and the brother of Ravan, is a good lesson to learn. Many such grains of wisdom are hidden in this great book.

Besides, the book reflects the height of progress which India reached in ancient time. We can be proud of it even to-day. In social sphere we learn the importance of self-sacrifice. The sacrifice of Rama for his father, brother and people is unique. Sita has become the symbol of Indian woman-hood. Lakshman and Bharat are the examples of good brothers. How the voice of the people should be respected above everything else by a king is shown by the renunciation of Sita by Ram. The achievement of science of those days are yet to be matched by the present day scientists. All these qualities make the book a superb piece of literature.

One book may be good from one point of view. Another one may be good from some other point of view. Ramcharitra Manas is the book which is good in numerous ways. It is my friend, philosopher and guide. I always like to read it.

Submitted to RB by Milan Chaterjee