In Ramayana, Lava and Kusha are the twin children of Rama. Sita is the mother of these children.  After returning from Lanka, Rama had ordered to banish Sita and sent her into forest and these two children were born in the hermit’s cottage built on the bank of Tamsa River. This hermit belonged to Valmiki Maharshi.

Lava and Kusha capturing the Ashwamedha horse
Lava and Kusha with Ashwamedha horse

Valmiki Maharshi had brought them up with due care. He respected Sita and she worked to assist the hermit in managing the premises as a centre of education. Hence, Valmiki had become the teacher of these children also.

Personally, Valmiki has not been recognized by Rama and Valmiki also did not know Rama personally. But the name of Rama was chanted by him since the Saptarishi team had advised him to do so. Valmiki taught them the lessons of military sciences; also as he thought it may be required for them in future.

Lava was whitish in complex and Kusha was somewhat blackish. They learned the lessons with great attentiveness and became experts in warfare in their childhood itself.

One day, one horse of the Ashwamedha yaga of Rama had entered the premises of Valmiki Maharshi. He had gone out for some urgent work. Kusha had gone to the forest for collecting the logs and sticks required for the rituals for the next day being used by the students and Valmiki Maharshi. Few young Ashram children with Lava were attracted by the notice pasted to the head of that horse.

The horse used to eat the garden plants and caused minor destruction of the Ashram premises. Lava could not tolerate the scenery. With his fellow children, he tied the horse to arrest its movements. Shatrughna was escorting the horse. He requested the children to release the horse but they did not yield. There was a small troop of armies with Shatrughna and Lava also had some stock of weapons with him. A fight had been started. Shatrughna defeated Lava and lifted him and decided to carry him to Ayodhya to produce before the king Rama.

The other children of the Ashram reported the proceedings to Sita and she began to cry thinking of the loss of her child. Then Kusha arrived there and collected the news of his younger brother. Immediately, he collected his amours, assured his mother to bring Lava back and ran through the short cut route of the forest. Kusha intercepted Shatrughna and charged his arrows up on him. Shatrughna fell down and his soldiers ran away to Ayodhya to report to Rama. From Ayodhya, Bharata and Lakshmana came in to fight but all of them failed. By this time, Kusha had released Lava and wished to return to Ashram.

Then, Rama had arrived there with his army consisting of Sugriva and Hanuman. The war started and all of them fell unconscious, including Rama due to the fierce fight by these two children. They tied Rama with a rope and both children head loaded him to the hermit’s hut where Sita was crying. Then, Valmiki  Maharshi also reached there. He collected the news and immediately sprinkled his water from his Kamandalu (water pot of Rishi). He released the horse and sought pardon of the king. The entire army marched ahead and before leaving the spot, Rama invited Valmiki Maharshi to the Ashwamedha yaga. Even though Sita knew Rama, Lava and Kusha have not been disclosed the truth.

Valmiki started to teach Lava and Kusha Ramayana verses. It started with Bala kanda. Lava and Kusha have by hearted all the verses taught by Valmiki Maharshi. The six full Kandas have been managed them and the seventh kanda reached till the ninety seventh sarga and three more sarga remained.

Valmiki Maharshi and Sita remained in their Ashram on the first day of Ashwamedha yaga. Lava and Kusha went to Ayodhya as per the orders of Valmiki Maharshi. Singing verses is a cultural program for entertainment. In front of the king Rama, the song of Ramayana was sung by Lava and Kusha as duet. The children have not been yet introduced to the king Rama and on the sixth day he had a doubt regarding the children.

The seventh day was concluding day of the yaga and hence Rama invited Valmiki Maharshi with Sita for the seventh day proceedings to his palace. After completion of the singing of the ninety seventh sarga as duet, Sita had been given a chance to declare her pious life. Sita, after her glorifying speech entered into the abode of mother earth, showing and proving she is the mother of this universe. Rama being the incarnation of God managed the function with great majesty and thereafter allowed Lava and Kusha to be in his palace. They have sung the remaining few verses of Uttara Kanda (7thvolume) on the morning of the eighth day and Valmiki Maharshi left to his Ashram.

Rama and his brothers lived happily together for a long time. Lava and Kusha also learned administration works in the palace.

After their marriage, Lava built a palace at Lavapura. It may be the present Lahore. History says there is a temple built on the name of Lava in Lahore.

Kusha inherited the throne and he was crowned in Ayodhya.

भद्रम् कर्णेभिः श्रुणुयामदेवाः भद्रम् पश्येमाक्षभिर्यजत्राः

It is from Ramayana which means, ‘Let us hear benevolent things and see good things’.

It is humbly prayed for the blessings of God Rama upon us.

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