In Indonesien ist der Sendratari Ramayana in
zwei großen Tanztraditionen zu finden, der javanischen und der balinesischen
Tradition, präsentiert als Tanzdrama und Gamelanorchester.
Ramayana is one of the two major Sanskrit epics of ancient
India, the other being the Mahābhārata. Along with the Mahābhārata, it forms the
The epic, traditionally ascribed to the Hindu Valmiki, narrates the life of
Rama, the legendary prince of the Kosala Kingdom. It follows his fourteen-year
exile to the forest from the kingdom, by his father King Dasharatha, on request
of his second wife Kaikeyi. His travels across forests in India with his wife
Sita and brother Lakshmana, the kidnapping of his wife by Ravana, the great king
of Lanka, resulting in a war with him, and Rama's eventual return to Ayodhya to
be crowned king.
There have been many attempts to unravel the epic's historical growth and
compositional layers; various recent scholars' estimates for the earliest stage
of the text range from the 7th to 4th centuries BCE, with later stages extending
up to the 3rd century CE.
The Ramayana is one of the largest ancient epics in world literature. It
consists of nearly 24,000 verses (mostly set in the Shloka meter), divided into
seven Kandas and about 500 sargas (chapters). In Hindu tradition, it is
considered to be the adi-kavya (first poem). It depicts the duties of
relationships, portraying ideal characters like the ideal father, the ideal
servant, the ideal brother, the ideal husband and the ideal king. Ramayana was
an important influence on later Sanskrit poetry and Hindu life and culture. Like
Mahabharata, Ramayana is not just a story: it presents the teachings of ancient
Hindu sages in narrative allegory, interspersing philosophical and ethical
elements. The characters Rama, Sita, Lakshmana, Bharata, Hanuman, Shatrughna,
and Ravana are all fundamental to the cultural consciousness of India, Nepal,
Sri Lanka, and south-east Asian countries such as Thailand, Cambodia, Malaysia,
There are many versions of Ramayana in Indian languages, besides Buddhist, Sikh,
and Jain adaptations. There are also Cambodian, Indonesian, Filipino, Thai, Lao,
Burmese, and Malaysian versions of the tale.