Was he a god or was he a man? Why did he publicly humiliate his beloved wife by insisting she prove her chastity – not once, but twice – inspite of knowing she had a spotless character? And why is any of this relevant?
Arshia Sattar masterfully answers these and many more questions. But what is more interesting, she leaves you with a whole new set of questions that mirror (rather uncomfortably), your own anxieties and issues, and force you to think about them; if nothing else, see them with new eyes.
The Ramayan needs no introduction. We love its romanticism; we’re inspired by its protagonist’s integrity and devotion to dharma; we long for a Ram rajya of justice and peace for all, especially in today’s kalyug when everything that can go wrong, does.
This book however, explores something else: Rama’s humanity and its tragic consequences for him, and those he loved, Sita, most of all. It opens him up, dissects him, and then puts this otherwise flawless genetic makeup under a microscope, to discover the rogue gene that managed to mutilate the perfect love story.
What I loved most though, was Sattar’s open passion for her hero, Rama. He infuses her book with his unique half-god half-man charisma and leaves you gasping for more.
So is Rama and Lord Ram one and the same? Find out for yourself. It’s a journey that promises much pleasure – and some pain.