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2-4-Raam's Age

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Raam's Age

Baal Kaand, 1/Sarg 19/Shlok 17b-18a
Before we come to decide Raam's age we should know that Viahwaamitra Jee asked Him from Dasharath only for 10 days.
This means that his Yagya continued only for 10 days, rest of the activities - going to Mithilaa, marriage to Seetaa etc took extra time, but that should not take several years. It is expected that it should have happened within months time.

At the time of their marriage Raam was 13 years of age and Seetaa was 6 years old.

Baal Kaand, 1/Sarg 20, Shlok 2
This is when Vishwaamitra Jee asked Dasharath to allow Raam and Lakshman to go with him, Dasharath replied -
"My lotus-eyed Raam is not yet 16 years of age, and I see no warring aptitude to him with the demons."

It seems that Raam was only 12 years old at that time as Maareech also confirms it while advising Raavan, that a boy of 12, Raam, killed my brother (Subaahu) and mother (Taadakaa) and hit me out [3/38/38]. It seems that Dasharath told Vishwaamitra Jee Raam's age less then 16 years because a person less than 16 years was not eligible to go to battlefield. A person below 16 years of age is not eligible to go in the battlefield. Although some say that by that time Raam had not attained all the 16 phases like Moon, means he was not a full-fledged man.

On the other hand, Maareech might have also lessened the age of Raam only to intimidate Raavan.

The things like moustaches, beard, etc which are common to humans or to birthed beings but not to the mythological entities. They were not even there on Raam's face. As a young scholar, the boys are supposed to dress "simply", hence 'one-piece clothing...' is said. And this suggests that He was not wearing any shield or armor to keep Him safe.

In Baal Kaand, at the outset of the journey of Raam and Lakshman with Vishwaamitra Jee, it is said that they wore finger-covers made of certain lizard skin, which means that their fingers were very tender for using arrows. His mothers delicately arranged the locks of His hair, because He was still a 'boy' to them, and more so, he was with 'boyish' ornaments too, not verily embellished with jewelry. He appeared like some providential 'boy' hitherto unseen, with the height of a peacock, with the complexion of peacock-neck-blue, and moving about like a noble peacock... but that peacock was not screaming, yet His bow was twanging, leave alone the screeching and screaming.

Ayodhyaa Kaand, 2/Sarg 20/Shlok 45
This is just after Kaikeyee has spoken to Raam about the exile and abdication and Raam and Lakshman go to Kaushalyaa's chamber and Raam tells her about the tragic developments; this is part of her response : "Oh,Rama! I have been waiting for seventeen years after your second birth of thread ceremony, with the hope that my troubles will disappear at one time or the other.

This shows that Kaushalyaa waited for 17 years after Raam's thread ceremony (Upanayan Sanskaar), which might be between the age of 5-7 years. This statement shows that Raam's age was between 22-24 years at that time.

Aranya Kaand, 3/Sarg 38/Shlok 6b-7a
This is the part of Maareech's descriptions about Raam and his life story : "But then the great sage, righteous Vishwaamitra, who was terrified of me, came in person to Dasharath and addressed the Lord of men as follows : "Let Raaa come and vigilantly protect me at the time of the lunar sacrifice, Lord of men, for I am terribly afraid of Maareech."
So the great and illustrious sage Vishwaamitra spoke, and the righteous King Dasharath replied to him : "Raaghav is a less than 12 years old and unpracticed in arms. and if need be, whatever army of mine is there it will march on along with me instead of Raam.

Commentator says that Maareech lessened the age of Raam only to intimidate Raavan.

Sundar Kaand, 5/Sarg 33/Shlok 17-18
Here Seetaa is telling Hanumaan about herself and her story : For 12 years I lived in Raaghav's house, enjoying all human
pleasures and having everything that I could possibly want. Then - in the 13th year - the king, along with his preceptors, undertook the consecration of that heir to the Ikshwaaku dynasty as king.

This dialog between Seetaa and Hanumaan shows that Seetaa lived in Ayodhyaa for 12 years only, and in the 13th year She was sent in exile.

The only place where Seetaa's age is specifically mentioned is the Aranya Kaand which gives it as 18 at the time of the exile . This means she was around 5-6 at the time of marriage. If Raam was 25 and Seetaa was 18 when they were exiled, then they were about 39 and 33 when they returned. All versions agree that Raam was less than 16 when He went with Vishwaamitra and then got married (and Seetaa around 5-6).

 

 

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Created by Sushma Gupta on 5/27/03
Contact:  sushmajee@yahoo.com
Updated on 04/13/13