Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Project Idea: Valmiki

Valmiki is both the author of one of the most famous versions of the Ramayana, and he is also a character in the story himself, with a fascinating life history of his own.

Research Tip: Start with the Wikipedia article about Valmiki, which tells the story of how he was the first to discover poetry, and how he then went on to compose the Ramayana. You can also read about his earlier life as Ratnakar, the robber.

You might also want to read about Tulsidas, the later poet who was considered by some to be a reincarnation of Valmiki. You can get a comic book version of Tulsidas's Ramayana in Bizzell: Tulsidas' Ramayana, and there is also a comic book about his life: Tulsidas: The Poet Who Wrote Ram-Charit-Manas.

Here is an image of Valmiki with the sons of Rama in his hermitage:

In Valmiki's hermitage, 
Lava and Kusha recite the Ramayana,
while Shatrughna listens.
(British Library: Mewar Ramayana)

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