As early as 300 B.C., India had already
produced a considerable body of literature
written in several Indian tongues derived
from a common ancestral languageSanskrit.
Their literature is also known as
- Contains hymns addressed to the Indian
gods, who are very numerous.
- They also contain stories about these
• The Mahabharata is an important source
of information on the development of
Hinduism between 400 bce and 200 ce
and is regarded by Hindus as both a text
about dharma (Hindu moral law) and a
• The Ramayana by Valmiki tells about life
in India around 1000 BCE and offers
models in dharma. The hero, Rama, lived
his whole life by the rules of dharma; in
fact, that was why Indian consider him
Characters in the Story
• a practice of choosing a husband, from
among a list of suitors, by a girl of
• Swayam in Sanskrit means self and vara
means choice or desire
How do we choose between
good and evil? What is God’s
role in our decision?
In each of us, two natures are at war – the
good and the evil. All our lives the fight goes
on between them, and one of them must
conquer. But in our own hands lies the
power to choose – what we want most to be
we are.” ― Robert Louis Stevenson
A. Read “The Breaking of the Bow” in your
book on p.
B. Answer Comprehension Check A on p.
452 of your English Textbook.
C. Answer the following questions:
1. What is the nature of Rama's mission to
2. To what extent is the Ramayana a
morality tale of good versus evil? To
what extent does Rama himself divide the
world into "good" and "evil"?
3. What characters did you find to be the
most interesting? Why?