Ram Navami is a sacred Hindu festival celebrated with lot of enthusiasm all over the country. It is a festival celebrating the birth day of Shri Ram. Shri Ram is considered as the 7th incarnation of Vishnu. It is believed that God Vishnu has come to the earth in 10 different forms which is known as dashawtar, 7th being Shri Ram. Ram Navmi falls on the ninth day of Chitra (the first month in Hindu calendar). It ends the nine day Chaitra Navratri which begins from the 1st day of Chitra.
Origin of Ram Navami
The followers of Lord Rama would observe a whole-day fast on the festival of Ram Nava. This fast is also called vat. At many places, the celebration of Ram Navmi starts from the first day of Chitra and goes on for nine days. This nine day period is called ‘Shri Rama Navratra’. This festival is celebrated in almost all everywhere in India. Shri Ram, the epitome of humanity is regarded as the perfect son, ideal husband and the most ideal king.
The day of Ram Navmi start with the worship of God. People get up early in the morning and perform Poojas followed by chanting of Ram mantras. Temples and shrines are decorated on this occasion. After the birth celebration in temple, rathyatras are taken out. Even Satsangs are organized by cultural committees to commemorate the birth of Lord Rama. The congregation of the devotees would sing bhajans, chant mantras in the praise of the God and listen to the legendary stories.
Many households perform poojas by offereing flowers and navaidyam to the pictures of Lord Ram, wife Sita and brother Lakshman. In many parts of India, typically South India, small idols of Lord Rama and Sita are worshipped in the households, which are taken to a procession on the streets, in the evening.
Some cities in India like Ayodhya, Bhadrachalam and Rameswaran are known for their celebration where thousands of people gather for Ram Navmi. In Ayodhya, the birthplace of Sri Rama, a big fair is held on this day. In South, in temples and at pious gatherings the learned narrate the thrilling episodes of the 'Ramayana'. The Kirtanists chant the holy name of Rama and celebrate the wedding of Rama with Sita on this day.
On the occasion of Ram Navmi, sharing with one shlok which describes the whole essence of Ramayan, it is known as ‘Eakshloki Ramayan’:
आदौ रामतपोवनाभिगमनं हत्वा मृगं कान्चनम॥
वैदेहीहरणं जटायुमरणं सुग्रीव संभाषणं ॥
वालीनिर्दलनं समुद्रतरणं लंका पुरीदाहनं ॥
पश्चाद्रावणकुम्भकर्णहननमेतद्धि रामायणं ॥