Less known myths of Ravana the Great | Sunday Observer

Less known myths of Ravana the Great

30 May, 2021

There is no doubt that even the sun’s rays will sink into obscurity before the glory of King Ravana. Even though there is a big controversy about the myths and legends behind Ravana only a few in a broad sense of our Sri Lankan history can be found.

Ravana the Great

Ravana is one of the tribal names. Ra means the sun and Vana means the tribe. Therefore, Ravana means the ‘Tribe of Sun.’ It is said that the name of this great warrior is Ravula Ravana.

Ravula who was conceived in the womb of Kaikesi is the son of the sage Vishrava and had siblings who were called Kumbhakarana , Vibhishana and Shurpanayakha. According to historical evidence it was in Brishrakh in Uttara Pradesh that King Ravana was born. It is said that even this village was named after Ravula Ravana’s birth.

A great scholar, he excelled in the six shastras and four vedhas:

As pointed out by many scholars it is from his own father Ravulu Ravana learnt the Vedhas along with his siblings.

Nyaya sutras:

It is regarded as an ancient Indian Sanskrit text composed by Aksapada Gautama and consists of five books. The key areas covered by the Nyaya Sutras are soul, self, inner freedom, yoga and brain. It can be pointed out that there existed a direct impact of The Nyaya Sutras on the Vedanta schools of Hindu philosophy.

Vaisesika sutras:

Vaisesika sutras known as Kanade sutras can be considered to be an ancient Sanskrit text. Vaisesik sutras written by the Hindu sage Kanada in aphoristic sutras style, is generally an arrangement of dispositions and presents its theories on the creation and existence of the universe using naturalistic atomism, applying logic and realism.

Shamkya sutras:

Shamkya sutras can be viewed as a collection of major Sanskrit texts. It is evident that the fact that Samkya sutras include the ancient Samkya sutras of Kapila. The theoretical foundation for ‘yoga‘is formed by the Shamkya sutras. According to the reliable sources Samkhya’s epistemology accepts three of the six pramanas. Furthermore, six pramanas are defined by the correct means of accurate knowledge and truths: Pratyaksa (perception), Anumāna (inference), Upamāna (comparison and analogy), Arthāpatti (postulation, derivation from circumstances), Anupalabdhi (non-perception, negative/cognitive proof) and Śabda (word, testimony of the past).

Yoga sutras:

The yoga sutras of Patanjali are the earliest text books on yoga. It can be seen that yoga is in a close relation to the Samkhya. It holds the fact that freedom can be accomplished simply by techniques for mental health.

The Mimansa sutras:

The Mimansa sutras comprise the religious texts of the Mimansa school of Hindu philosophy. It holds the fact that the spirit is a reality. It is possible to free the spirit by following the rituals prescribed by ancient scholars.

Vedanta sutras:

Of the six sutras the most significant one is the Uttata Mimansa known as Vedanta. A great part of Hinduism is contributed by the Vedanta sutras. The content of the Vedanta sutras is the Brahma sutras attributed to sage Badarayana who made a great effort to arrange the lessons of the Upanishads.

The four vedas known as Rig veda , Yajur veda , Sama veda and Atharva veda should be discussed. As pointed out by many scholars and historians it is said that Ravulu Ravana excelled in the six sutras and the four Vedas. He had also been well versed in many subjects such as astrology, medicine and architecture.

Twelve books based on astrology and medicine have been written by Ravana. It is none but Ravana who had created one of the great martial arts called Angampora. Even at present, Angampora practitioners can be found worshipping King Ravana prior to their practices.

Opinions on Ravana:

The 107th Indian Science Congress was attended by scholars including the Vice-Chancellor of Andhra University Prof. G. Nageswara Rao. The Prime Minister of India Narendra Singh Modhi was the chief guest. Prof. G. Nageswara Rao made a statement that Raul had possessed not only the Dadumonara - peacock aircraft but also 24 types of aircraft.

As mentioned by some Indian scientists, Ravana who was the first aviator in human history had owned may airports across the island.

In the year 2020, the current Sri Lankan government headed by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa made a request to all Sri Lankans to share any document or book containing the facts related to Ravana and our hidden history.

Sri Lankans as a nation should take the responsibility to unearth our buried glory and legacy for our next generation.