The Origin Of Ravana

How the mighty have fallen. Ravana statue in Ellora

I’m more of a Shiva guy, but like anything else in the Hindu pantheon, it’s an infinite loop. My experience of Hinduism is of a never ending iPhone pinch and zoom. You can zoom in or out, either way it goes on forever. On one level Rama vs. Ravana is straightforward good vs. evil. On another it is a more complex character play. But so is One Tree Hill. I just heard this story about the origins of Ravana which places it on another cosmic level.

For me, Hinduism reflects a lot of modern subcontinental life. Or, to be accurate, vice versa. It’s all about powers that be, and access. Like bureaucrats and ministers, I’ve heard of so many fights about access. You know why Ganesh has an elephant’s head? Because his dad Shiva cut it off. Ganesh wouldn’t let anyone in while his mother was bathing, not even Shiva. Which the God of destruction didn’t take too kindly too.

Similarly, Rama (after the war) told Lackshman not to let anyone disturb him, on penalty of death. Turns out the Lackshman had to disturb Rama, and then killed himself. So this access stuff is serious.

What I heard is that all the trouble caused by Ravana was the karmic result of another access struggle among the gods. As I said, I’m a Shiva guy, mostly because Ravana himself was a devotee of Shiva. So I thought I had that down. But, like trying to nail spaghetti to a wall, there’s a certain string theory to this stuff. These beings are just vibrations through time.

I always knew that Rama was a incarnation of Vishnu, and avatar. Turns out that Ravana is an incarnation as well, of Vishnu’s guard, cursed to three bad births.

Vishnu had two guards, Jaya and Vijaya. I’ve seen them in temples before, but never paid much notice. Some great sages came to visit Vishnu and Jaya and Vijaya wouldn’t let them in. The sages cursed the pair to be mortals and roam the earth. They escalated the problem to Vishnu. He said he couldn’t take back the curse, but he gave them a choice. Take 100 good mortal births or three wicked. They took the three. In one of them they came back as Ravana and his brother Kumbhakarana.

In each birth Vishnu himself reincarnated to kill them, in effect bringing them closer to their wanted return, to his side. So, what looked like a battle in the macro was really a great favor on the whole. And then, from that vantage, the morality of that particular battle sorta pales, in the cosmic scope. It was like this because. That is, it’s all a part of something bigger. And I’m sure there’s something bigger still. I don’t get it, but it is awesome.

RSS feed | Trackback URI


2010-03-10 12:47:40

[...] trackback So, my son Indrajit has been hot on the trail of Rama for a month now in India, and writing about yours truly while he’s at it. I don’t get on the blogosphere much these days, what with my ten [...]

2010-07-02 05:59:49

That was fun. Is that your Dad’s blog? ? Interesting. He says you like Sita too and thats its incestuos. Thats contradicting since Raavan actually did NOT like Sita but only kinda provoke Ram to bring him closer to Vishnu anwyay. Lol. ANyway, that place is nice.

2011-12-13 09:01:39

[...] the entire Ramayana began with a security guard fail, at least karmically (The Origin Of Ravana). Rebirths back, Vishnu’s guards wouldn’t let a visiting sage in to see him. The sage [...]

2013-07-08 01:36:56

Jaya & vijaya was guard of parvatee, thats correct ravan was a guard of vishnu and been cursed but he was a male guard

Name (required)
E-mail (required - never shown publicly)
Your Comment (smaller size | larger size)
You may use <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong> in your comment.

email indi AT

Recent Comments

How The BBS Attacks (A Tale Of Two Cities) (6)

Jack Point: The BBS is tapping into resentments that are buried deep in the subconscious. What they do it to tap in to them, nurture them and magnify them. Exactly what 969 is doing. Exactly what the Nazi’s did. http://jestfork icks.blogsp...

shammi: But you do agree that not arresting G.A. Gnanasara and any other lawbreakers from both sides will only serve to deepen this mistrust? If you don’t, you must be living in said land.

Liberal One: I was talking about the distrust between Sinhalese and Muslims. If you think distrust between these two communities didn’t exist before Gnanasara thero entered the scene you must be living in the la la land of the Colombians.

Damian Poosa (2000-2014) (1)

greene: innalillahi wa inna ilaihi raajioon.

Buddhism And Racism (2)

Johan: Temples tend to be quite skilled at fund raising for building projects within temple premises; perhaps they could mobilise those skills to raise funds to rebuild the damage wrought in Aluthgama and Beruwela. If you go to a particular...

Nandasiri Wanninayaka: Nice to see you are blogging again.

What A Colombo Revolution Might Look Like (Thailand) (6)

Shirley Silva: Good analysis but you failed to mention that unlike in Bangkok a good shower would send the UNPs scuttling home. Above all there is a big leadership vacuum. No charismatic leader like in Thailand

sharanga: Good constructive criticism.

sharanga: >the electorate is too ill-informed to decide This is almost always true in any country. It’s one of the greatest faults of democracy. The electorate is ill-informed and as public choice theorists put it, systematica...

Anti Christian Christmas (2)

Jack Point: I found this video very disturbing. v=EUHCQyxK3ps&a mp;feature=yout http://dbsjeyar hives/27450

Damian Poosa (2000-2014)

Our family cat Damian passed away last night. He was an American cat and it was fitting that he passed on the Fourth Of July. Damian was an ornery cat made happy by the love and care of my sister and parents. I brought him home on the day of my high school graduation (a stunningly thoughtless thing, in hindsight) and my sister and mother actually raised him. He then travelled back to Sri Lanka and had a great time till he got old.

How The BBS Attacks (A Tale Of Two Cities)

This seems to be the basic BBS gameplan (for fucking up everything we’ve worked so hard to build after the war). It’s a cycle of outrage, riot, fear, repeat. It’s like the eightfold path to not being a Buddhist:

Buddhism And Racism

Buddhism is not racist. The ideas and practice of Buddhism involve meditation, perception of impermanence and ultimately what we would call a renunciation of self. Being a Buddhist, however, is not just that. Being a Buddhist fundamentally involves taking refuge in three things – the Buddha, the Dhamma (his teachings) and the Sangha (the community of practice). As a Buddhist, this is why the violence in Aluthgama is so troubling. Becomes it comes cloaked in the colors of the Sangha. The main racists and instigators of mob violence are monks.

The Tragedy In Aluthgama

I haven’t written here in a while because, well, I guess I haven’t had much to say. I’m been writing about food and leisure at YAMU but, well, somethings gotten in the way of that now. In a way we could sense it because of the constant halal debate on YAMU, which is mainly a food site. That food issue in many ways has become a touchstone for the Muslim/Buddhist tensions rising in this country. Yesterday those tensions seemed to explode in Aluthgama and Beruwela on the Western coast. The racist BBS staged a rally there and then paraded thru the streets. This exploded into violence, attacks on businesses and homes.