Sita Mata: The Epitome of Sacrifice
Sita Mata, the wife of Lord Rama, was the daughter of King Janaka and Sunayana. The entire Ramayana revolves around this great lady who was a loving child of her parents and faithful wife of her husband. She is believed to be the avatar of Goddess Lakshmi. Sita mata is the epitome of sacrifice, spousal virtues and dedication.
Sita mata is also known by the names Vaidehi, Janaki, Maithili, Bhoomija and so on.
The king of Janakpur, Janak did not have any children. When he and his wife Sunayana were engrossed in the grief of childlessness, they come across a tiny baby inside a box that is hidden under the earth. Both the husband and wife adopt the girl, name her as Sita and look after her. As she grew up, she became a beautiful and compassionate girl. She is believed to be the daughter of Earth Goddess Bhoomi.
She was married to Lord Rama, who fought for her in the Swayamvar and won her hand. Rama was the prince of Ayodhya, and he was on a journey with his brother Lakshman and his guru, to learn the various skills that a king requires when he meets Sita.
Soon after marriage, she is sent exile with her husband and brother-in-law Lakshman. The exile period is fourteen years. The trio lived in the Dandakaranya, a thick forest in India. She was abducted by Ravan, who was smitten by her beauty. He took her to Lanka and hid her in the Ashoka Vatika. Ravan looked after Sita well and never forced himself on her. She lived in the memory of her husband Ram and never once fell for Ravan’s charms. Rama, with the help of Hanuman and several other monkeys, built a bridge across the sea and reached Lanka. He fought with Ravan and won over Sita again. Both of them returned to Ayodhya after fourteen years to live happily.
But, Rama abandons his pregnant wife due to kingly responsibilities. The sad Sita takes refuge in Sage Valmiki’s hermitage. She is blessed with twin boys, Lava, and Kusha. After a reunion with her children and husband, she goes back to her mother’s womb, the Earth.
Some stories say that Sita was the daughter of Ravan himself. When she was born, the astrologers predicted that she would end the life of her father. Thus, Ravan ordered the baby to be buried away in a distant land. She was found by Janak, the king while plowing the land.
Others believe that she was the reincarnation of Vedavati, who was assaulted by Ravan and sworn to be born again to take her revenge on him.
Place of birth
Sita was discovered in a furrow in Janakpur, the present day Nepal. There is a pilgrimage site called the Janaki Mandir, in Nepal. It is believed to be the place where Rama wed with Sita Mata.
There are many temples that are dedicated to goddess Mata Sita.
- Sita Mai temple in Haryana
- Sita Devi temple in Pulpally, Kerala
- Sita Amman Kovil Sri Lanka
- Sita Kund in Punaura Dham of Bihar