The Ramayana

The Ramayana 14. The Coronation Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
Rama explains that he had to test Sita's purity, which the narrator points out is very inconsistent with Rama's character and past actions. The narrator lists instances in which Rama dealt kindly with disgraced wives, but explains that Sita wasn't even disgraced, since she spurned all of Ravana's advances. Though the gods are relived that Rama was victorious, after watching Rama test Sita they're also concerned that Rama is losing sight of his identity. They decide to remind him that he's divine. Brahma addresses Rama and reminds him of the Trinity (Brahma, Shiva, and Vishnu), and tells Rama that he's an incarnation of Vishnu. Brahma adds that Sita is also divine, and asks Rama to remember his identity.
The gods are concerned that Rama has become too human-like, as evidenced by his possessive and jealous nature. The jealous streak shows that though Rama is indeed divine, he is first and foremost human and therefore at risk of experiencing these very human negative emotions. By reminding Rama of his divine roots, the gods insure that Rama remembers that he still has work to do on earth and he must be good, honorable, and loyal in order to finish spreading goodness on earth.
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Related Quotes
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In the heavens, Shiva asks Dasaratha to visit Earth and meet Rama. Dasaratha agrees, and Rama is struck with joy to see his father. Dasaratha says that he's spent many years dwelling on Kaikeyi's betrayal, but he can let it go now. He says that he's blessed to be Rama's father, and asks Rama to ask anything of him. Rama insists he needs nothing, but at Dasaratha's urging, asks his father to forgive and recant disowning Bharatha and Kaikeyi.
Dasaratha speaks as though he was initially unsure that Rama was going to be able to fulfill his destiny. This continues to suggest that though destiny is certainly a force to be reckoned with, the characters can't always be sure that one path is truly the right or predetermined one. Notice that Rama insists that Dasaratha truly cleanse his soul by honoring his wife, rather than holding onto his grudge.
Themes
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Dasaratha insists that Bharatha has already been forgiven, but says he can't forgive Kaikeyi. Rama lists all the reasons why Dasaratha should forgive Kaikeyi, and finally Dasaratha agrees. He blesses Rama, Sita, and Lakshmana, and then returns to the heavens.
Rama again uses reasoning and debate to persuade someone to become more moral. Dasaratha can learn from his son and become truly righteous in death.
Themes
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The gods remind Rama that the following day is the final day of his 14-year exile. They tell him that if he doesn't return to Ayodhya at once, Bharatha might hurt himself. Rama asks Vibishana for help, and Vibishana summons a magical vehicle. All of Rama's supporters board and fly towards Ayodhya. They make several stops along the way and finally, Rama sends Hanuman to go ahead and tell Bharatha that he's coming.
Remember that Rama promised Bharatha to return; he must keep this promise or he won't be able to fulfill the rest of his destiny. Bharatha shows that he's still extremely loyal to Rama's claim to the throne. Rama is going to return to Ayodhya a true hero, with even more power to spread goodness and morality.
Themes
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Duty, Honor, and Loyalty Theme Icon
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Outside Ayodhya, Bharatha had been counting the days until Rama's return. He thinks that Rama isn't going to come, tries to pass ruling responsibilities on to Sathrugna, and prepares to step into a fire like Sita did. Sathrugna tries to dissuade his brother, but Hanuman arrives just in time to tell Bharatha that Rama is on his way. Hanuman explains to Bharatha what happened over the last 14 years, and asks Bharatha to make an announcement and decorate the streets.
Bharatha has spent the last 14 years meditating on Rama and Rama's return to Ayodhya, which means that he's spent that time taking on some of Rama's positive qualities, just as Ravana did. This continues to show that Rama is capable of inspiring positive change even when he's not around. Even the thought of Rama is enough to help someone be a better person.
Themes
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When Rama arrives, he greets his mother and stepmothers. He quickly dresses himself like a king, and Sita dresses like a queen. An attendant sets the time for their coronation.
All is well, and finally Rama will be rewarded for following Dasaratha's orders and acting as a loyal and dutiful son.
Themes
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