Following the Path of One’s Duty: Tulsīdās’s Rāmcaritmānas as a Socio-Cultural Code


  • Danuta Stasik University of Warsaw



Tulsīdās, Rāmcaritmānas, varṇāśramadharma, north Indian ethos


The significant role of Tulsīdās’s Rāmcaritmānas (1574) in north Indian ethos cannot be overestimated. The story of Rām’s deeds interpreted by the poet in agreement with the spirit of his times not only vocalizes its author’s ideas and is one of the best testimonies of his times’ world-view but, what is especially significant, it unhesitatingly supports the core values of the Hindu varṇāśramadharma. As a result, throughout the centuries since its inception, the poem has enjoyed high moral status among Hindus, for whom it has set the model of life to be followed.
This paper forms an attempt at exploring the Rāmcaritmānas as a socio-cultural code that sets out the boundaries of “how things should be done”, therefore the important term maryādā / maryādit is first referred to. The focus of the analysis are the rules of conduct formulated in the poem, which aim at regulating the life of society, and the consequences caused by observing or breaking them.

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How to Cite

Stasik, Danuta. 2013. “Following the Path of One’s Duty: Tulsīdās’s Rāmcaritmānas As a Socio-Cultural Code”. Cracow Indological Studies 15 (December):237-48.