HOME  |  Forum  |  Classifieds  |  Yellowpages  |  Tickets  |  Write Articles  |  Business Services  |  Contact us

iVarta.com

India, Asia and World News Headlines
Opinion, Analysis, Columns and Discussions
Business, Social and Community Networking
Free India, USA, Canada Classifieds
Business Yellow Pages Directory and Website Listing

  Rama Sethu: Historic facts vs political fiction - V  
 

Comprehensive Collection of India News, Articles, Columns, Analysis and Research Papers. Facts about India, Indian History, Culture, Business, Politics, and Terrorism. Religions of India, Mystery and Diversity of India.

Rama Sethu, Ram Setu, Ramar Bridge, History, Facts: Part V


Visit out Collection of Articles, Analysis & Newsletters Library


 

iVarta.com:
All about India News, Views and Analysis | Business, Social and Community Networking | Free Classifieds, Yellow Pages and more...

 

By: V Sundaram, IAS, Retd.
May 26, 2007
V
iews expressed here are author?s own and not of this website. Full disclaimer is at the bottom.

 Feedback

Rama Setu - Related Articles:
Ramar Bridge: A historic verdict by Madras High Court
V Sundaram
Todays Parasurama for the cause of Rama Setu
V Sundaram
Sonia Gandhi wants credit for Saving Ram Setu? Dr.Dipak Basu
SSCP - Ramayana facts vs Keemayana fiction
V Sundaram
Sonia Gandhi wants credit for Saving Ram Setu?
V Sundaram
TR Baalu, Rama Sethu Project and Dr Subramanian Swamy
V Sundaram
Rama Sethu, Ram Setu, Adam's Bridge - Part I - History, Facts, Information 
V Sundaram
Rama Sethu, Ram Setu, Adam's Bridge - Part II - History, Facts, Information
V Sundaram
Rama Sethu, Ram Setu, Adam's Bridge - Part III - History, Facts, Information
V Sundaram
Rama Sethu, Ram Setu, Adam's Bridge - Part IV - History, Facts, Information
V Sundaram
Rama Sethu, Ram Setu, Adam's Bridge - Part V - History, Facts, Information
V Sundaram
Sethusamudram Shipping Canal Project : Good Thing Done Badly! Sundara Krishnaswami

We are used to being told that India has no historiography, no historic graphical literature. And therefore no history and that Indians think in terms of millions of years, cyclical and recurrent. This is a colonial perspective that is clearly absurd. This is the view of Marxist historians produced like house flies by the Jawaharlal Nehru University during the last 30 years. This is also the view of Islamic historians from Aligarh Muslim University who still continue to believe in the two-nation theory of Mohammad Ali Jinnah. Our tragedy today is that Islam-Embracing, Christianity-Coveting and Hindu-Hating treacherous trio of Mrs Ambika Soni, T R Balu and Karunanidhi are sharing the same colonial perspective of British India in so far as the Hindus of India and their great heritage are concerned.

There are extensive and detailed references to Rama Setu or Ramar Bridge or Setu Bandhana or Adam's Bridge in Sanskrit Literature. Ramayana, attributed to the poet Valmiki, is one of the most important literary works on ancient India. The Ramayana has had a profound impact on art and culture in the Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia.
Valmiki in his Ramayana describes construction of this bridge between Slokas 2-22-50 and 2-22-72:
 

 

""I am a son born of Visvakarma's own loins. I am equal to Viswakarma. This god of Ocean has reminded me. The great ocean spoke the truth. Being unasked, I have not told you my details earlier. I am capable of constructing a bridge across the ocean. Hence, let the foremost of monkeys build the bridge now itself. Then, being sent by Rama, hundreds and thousands of monkey heroes jumped in joy on all sides towards the great forest. Those army-chiefs of monkeys, who resembled mountains, broke the rocks and trees there and dragged them away towards the sea. Those monkeys filled the ocean with all types of trees like Sala and Asvakarna, Dhava and bamboo, Kutaja, Arjuna, Palmyra, Tilaka, Tinisa, Bilva, Saptaparna, Karnika, in blossom as also mango and Asoka. Some others drew up strings a hundred Yojanas long (in order to keep the rocks in a straight line.) Nala on his part initiated a monumental bridge in the middle of the ocean. The bridge was built at that time with the cooperation of other monkeys, of terrible doings. Some monkeys were holding poles for measuring the bridge and some others collected the material. Reeds and logs resembling clouds and mountains, brought by hundreds of monkeys, lead by the command of Rama, fastened some parts of the bridge. Monkeys constructed the bridge with trees having blossom at the end of their boughs...That Nala, the strong and illustrious son of Visvakarma and an excellent monkey built the bridge across the sea as truly as his father would have built it. That beautiful and lovely bridge constructed by Nala across the ocean, the abode of alligators, shone brightly like a milky way of stars in the sky.""

From Valmiki Ramayana we can see that when Rama and Sita are flying in Pushpa Vimana, Rama tells Sita "" You can see the grand ocean of SETU BANDHANAM down below, worshipped by one and all in all the three worlds, over which we are flying now. This is a very sacred spot which can help all destroy their sins. In this very sacred spot Lord Shiva came to reside aeons ago just in order to help me"". Here is the relevant Sanskrit verse from Valmiki in Tamil transliteration:  

Apart from the Valmiki Ramayana which has emphatic and graphic references to the construction of Setu Bandhana in 85 slokas in a separate sarga in Yuddha Kanda, Mahabharata also refers to the continued protection of Nala Setu following the command of Sri Rama. KALIDASA too in his Raghuvamsa extols the glory and grandeur of Sri Rama.
SKANDA PURANA (VI.101.1-44) describes the installation of three Shiva lingas at the end, middle and beginning of Rama Setu and making the same bridge submerged under waters of the ocean and thereby creating Setu-Teerth.

The construction of Rama Setu is also described in Kurma Purana (21.10-61), Vishnu Purana (IV.4.40-49), Agni Purana (V-XI) and Brahma Purana (138.1-40). Garuda Purana (1.81.1-22) lists the sacred places including Setubandh and Rameswar. Narada Purana (Uttara Bhag 76.1-20) goes into raptures on the immortal greatness of Rama Setu.
There is a kavya in Prakrit by King Pravarasena II (550-600 CE) called ""Setu bandha or Ravanavaho"".""Dasamuha Vadha"" (Setubandha Kavya) was written by the King Damodara Sen (5th Century).

 Shantikumar Nanooram Vyas in his book "INDIA IN THE RAMAYANA AGE" (1967) gives the following description of the Rama Setu Bridge in the light of the literary evidence he has gleaned from Valmiki's Ramayana (pages 252-264):

 ""A still more eloquent proof of the high level of efficiency of civil engineering of the day is afforded by the construction of the Bridge across the ocean in Lanka. In building the bridges across this infinite depth and breadth in time, remarkable speed and dexterity must have been displayed by the Vanara forces. Engines or cranes were used for uprooting trees and crags and transporting them to the edge of the water. Sutras (measuring lines) were used by the builders to be sure that the rocks were laid out in a straight line. Dandas or measuring rods were also used. Small stones, grass, creepers and sticks (kaashtha) were used as building material. The Vanaras threw the huge tree first, then weighted them with rocks and used small stones, sticks, grass and creepers as materials for filling the crevices. The co-operation and co-ordination between the different workers was so perfect that within five days the marvelous structure stood complete and finished (VI.22.56-76). The vehicles used for carrying, and conveying, men and goods from one place to another were known as yaanas (II.92.35)""

An exquisite sculpture of the Gupta period dating back to the 5th - 6th century AD depicting Vanaras building the Rama Setu Bridge to Sri Lanka has been shown below:
 
Prambanan is the largest Hindu temple compound in Indonesia, located in central Java. It was built around 850 AD by either Rakai Pikatan, king of the second Mataram dynasty or Balitung Maha Sambu, of the Sanjaya dynasty. Today, it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the largest Hindu temples in south-east Asia. There are beautiful sculptures depicting the construction of the Rama Setu Bridge by the Vanaras. We can see one of those beautiful sculptures from Prambanan Shiva Temple below:

Apart from Valmiki Ramayana and Mahabharata, there are innumerable references to the Rama Setu Bridge in Tamil literature. Sangam Literature is one of the main sources used for documenting the early history of the ancient Tamil country. The facts I am presenting below are based on an article in Tamil titled ""The Truth of Rama Sethu in literature"" by Veera Rangarajan of Ithihasa Sanglana Samithi, Tamil Nadu.

In Agananooru, there is a direct reference to Rama directing the construction of the Rama Setu Bridge which has been presented below:

 

Thiruganasambandar in his Thevaram refers to Rama controlling and containing the ferocious waves of the ocean in order to complete the construction of the Rama Setu Bridge. Likewise Thirunavukarasar in his Thevaram describes how Rama filled the ocean with mountains in order to create the Rama Setu Bridge. SETU in Tamil means a DAM or what is called in Tamil as ""SEIKARAI""."Seikarai" means to create or build a shore.
There is a 16th century work in Tamil titled Setu Mahatmiyam which is also referred to as Setu Puranam in local tradition and legend Nirambaazagiyasingar was the author of this poetical work. This work was edited by the great Tamil savant and scholar Yalpanam Nallur Arumuganavalar in the 19th century and published by the Trustees of Saivapprakasha Vidya Salai of Chidambaram in Madras Presidency. Sri Ponnuswamy Thevar of Ramanathapuram Samasthanam, a great Saiva Siddthantha scholar, played a catalytic role in the matter of printing and publication of this 16th century classic Setu Mahatmiyam. Sodavadanam Subburaya Chettiyar, a prominent disciple of Thirisirapuram Mahavidvan Meenakshisundaram Pillai, wrote an invocatory poem to this edition of this great work. Consisting of 45 Sargas and 3438 songs/poems and marked by majesty of thought and loftiness of expression, this work makes a beautiful presentation of the construction of the Rama Setu Bridge. In a chapter entitled Setu Churukkam, the glorious significance of Setu is brought out in 64 verses.

Starting from 1850 to 1930, there existed a popular cultural tradition in Ramanathapuram District and Southern Districts relating to the widespread public performances of Kathakalakshebam (public musical/religious/spiritual discourses with musical and percussion accompaniments like Violin, Mirdangam etc) about the glory of Rameshwaram and Rama Setu Bridge. Many outstanding itinerant exponents of Kathakalakshebam used go from village to village ant town to town and give public performances and discourses under the general title of ""SETU BANDHANA MAHATTUVAM"". Thousands of Hindu devotees used to congregate at these performances with great enthusiasm. A great scholar called Arumuga Upadhiyayar in Ramanathapuram District collected the traditional texts of these Kathakalakshebam performers and recorded and preserved them on Palm Leaves in his own hand writing towards the end of the 19th century. Half a century later, in 1957 an enterprising publisher called M.R.M.S. Ramalinga Pillai in Ramanathapuram Town brought out a book under the title "SETU MAHATTUVAM". Here is a sample verse from ""SETU BANDHANA MAHATTUVAM"":

From all these accounts it should be clear that there is irrefutable literary evidence, scriptural evidence, numismatic evidence, epigraphic evidence, architectural and sculptural evidence and above all time-defying historic evidence regarding the continued existence of the Rama Setu Bridge (Setu Bandhana) or Adam's Bridge for centuries which can stand the strictest judicial scrutiny in any court of law in India and abroad. Against this background, the recent irresponsible and reprehensible statement of Mrs. Ambika Soni in the Lok Sabha to the effect that there is no scientific evidence regarding the existence of the Rama Setu Bridge can be dismissed as absurd and childish. To Islam-Embracing, Christianity-Coveting and Hindu-Hating pseudo-secular Indian Talibans (!!!) like Mrs. Ambika Soni, T R Balu and Karunanidhi, I would only say with unshakable humility on behalf of more than 800 millions of Hindus in India and several Millions of Hindus outside India in all parts of the world: ""We know how to vaccinate ourselves against Small Pox. We are at a loss to understand as to how we should vaccinate ourselves against your pseudo-secular small minds"".

(Concluded)

V Sundaram, IAS, Retd.

       Send your views to author


Do you wish to reach our readers? submit your guest column

Copyright and Disclaimer:
The views expressed in this article are the author's own and not of this website. The author is solely responsible for the contents of this article (
Rama Sethu, Ram Setu, Ramar Bridge, History, Facts: Part V). This website does not represent or endorse the accuracy, completeness or reliability of any opinion, statement, appeal, advice or any other information in the article (Rama Sethu, Ram Setu, Ramar Bridge, History, Facts: Part V). Our readers are free to forward this page URL to anyone. This column may NOT be transmitted or distributed by others in any manner whatsoever (other than forwarding or web listing page URL) without the prior permission from us and the author.
 

Rama Sethu, Ram Setu, Ramar Bridge, History, Facts Article Series

Previous articles by:
V Sundaram, IAS, Retd.

Sachar Committee"s gigantic fraud

Deadly enemies of merit and excellence

NGOs, subversive activists, foreign funds

An Assault on The Soul of The Nation

A "Great" Congress MP from Nepal!

Bush-sponsored Evangelisation of India

Tying Bharat Mata up in knots!!

CPI(M)s pseudo secular contortions

Evangelization or Satanism: Cause & effect

Jinnah - A genuine Muslim communalist

A great harbinger of Hindu renaissance

Islamic terrorism in Tenkasi

Chennai"s tribute fo Judge"s verdict...

Aurobindo"s vs Congress nationalism

"Churchianity" - An artifice for aggression

All articles by:
V Sundaram, IAS, Retd.

 


 

Visit iVarta.com for a rich experience - “#1 Information Resource about India and the Indian Community"

Comprehensive Collection of India News, Articles, Columns, Analysis and Research Papers. Facts about India, Indian History, Culture, Business, Politics, and Terrorism. Religions of India, Mystery and Diversity of India. Rich information resource on India, Indians and Asia. Expert Guide, Comments, New, Views and Analysis. Indus Valley Culture, Religious life of Indians, Beliefs and Practices. Yoga, Meditation and Ayurveda. History of Indian Invasion, Hinduism, Christianity, Islam. Jammu and Kashmir: Facts, History and Politics. Terrorism in J&K, History about terrorism in India. India's international relations with USA, Russia, UK, Pakistan, China....and more....

Terms of Service | Join mailing list | NBC int | Write Guest Columns | Sitemap