Mankind is bound to the conduct of Dharma. When one follows and protects Dharma, It protects us. In the adherence of Dharma, one faces difficulties and integrity is put to test. However, the courageous and the truthful one instead of running away from the situation, faces it and wins over it. Ramayan helps to understand this truth and draw inspiration from personalities who have faced tough situations, but not let down Dharma at any cost.
Dharma differs from person to person, situation to situation. In the same family, while Shri Ram adheres to his Dharma and leaves to the forest for upholding his father’s word and Queen Kaikeyi’s wish, in the same family is Bharat who fights for Dharma in a different perspective. As Shri Ram, he does not abide to Kaikeyi’s wishes, but instead teaches her the true meaning of Dharma. For Bharat, his Dharma was to give Shri Ram his rightful inheritance and seek forgiveness for his mother’s deeds. It was the toughest decision for Bharat to stay away from Shri Ram for fourteen years for the sake of Dharma.
Lakshman follows his Dharma by accompanying Shri Ram to the forest. He believes his Dharma lies in being with his brother during difficult times, and he sacrifices his personal comforts for that. He put Urmila in the service of the Queen mothers and thus both put away their personal life behind till things became alright. Lakshman and Urmila’s Dharma was to support their family during turbulent times. Forgoing their personal comfort and life was the toughest decision for Lakshman and Urmila.
When it came to the same relation of Bali and Sugriv, Dharma was in a different context. Here, one brother had snatched away the wife and kingdom of the other, and thus Dharma was to rightfully restore the kingdom of Kishkinda and Ruma from Bali to Sugriv. Shri Ram supports Sugriv in this and does not hesitate to kill Bali for retaining Dharma. When Bali questions the same, Shri Ram lets know Bali his true Dharma was to take care of his younger brother rather than banishing him from the kingdom without knowing the real truth. Sugriv feels upset that he was the reason for his brother’s death, but adheres to his Dharma and makes Angad the crown prince of Ayodhya. Sacrificing his brother was the toughest decision for Dharma for Sugriv.
Vibhishan was the righteous brother of Ravan, but it was unfortunate of Ravan that he could never see eye to eye with his brother. Vibhishan stuck to his Dharma and requested many a time that Ravan should give back Mata Sita to Shri Ram lest the consequences would be bad for the whole of Lanka. But Ravan does not heed. As his Dharma, Vibhishan leaves Ravan for good and seeks refuge in Shri Ram. Here Vibhishan does not support his brother for his evil deeds, and prefers to break up with his brother rather than being against Dharma. Although Vibhishan sees his entire kith and kin die in the war, he bears all the pain for the sake of Dharma which was the toughest decision of his life.
With such tough decisions in life for the sake of Dharma, these great personae set up a benchmark as the representations of Dharma and the truthful followers of the Shri Ram in conduct of Dharma.