The festival of Dussehra or Dasara marks the end of the nine day Navaratri festival. It celebrates the victory of good over evil. Its story originates from the Indian epic Ramayana, where Lord Ram defeated the demon Ravan, who had snatched away the former’s wife. The word Dussehra is derived from the Sanskrit term dasha hara, which means ‘defeat of the ten’. Over here, ten signifies the ten heads of Ravan. His ten heads symbolize ten evils – Kama Vasana (lust), Krodh (anger), Moha (attachment), Lobha (greed), Mada (over pride), Matsara (jealousy), Swartha (selfishness), Anyay (injustice), Amanavta (cruelty) and Ahankara (ego).
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When we look at today’s scenario, we realize that the story of Ramayana is so relevant even today. May all of us strive to destroy the various evils from our society. Unfortunately, there are not limited to just 10. However, strong will power and sheer determination by the masses would surely yield fruitful results.
Have faith that you are all, my brave lads, born to do great things! Let not the barks of puppies frighten you — no, not even the thunderbolts of heaven — but stand up and work! – Swami Vivekananda