Sons of Rama and Sita. After Rama sent away Sita, who was
pregnant, to the forest, the twin children were born to her in the hermitage of sage
Valmiki. Desirous of performing the Ashwamedha (Horse) sacrifice, Rama sent across the
country the sacrificial horse demanding allegiance from all. Lava and Kusha tied the horse
and successfully fought Bharata, Shatrughna, Lakshmana and finally Rama himself. The boys
sang the story of Ramayana taught to them by Valmiki. Sita with Lava and Kusha was finally
reunited with Rama.
Who is there in Bharat who has not heard the names of Sri Rama and Sita? Rama, in order
to honor his father's words, gave up his kingship and agreed to live in the forest. Sita,
though tender like a flower, followed her husband, like his shadow, to the forest. The
couple had to undergoend- less travails throughout their lives. Yet they did not give up
the path of righteousness. That is why they remain as ideals to us. The story of Rama and
Sita is the 'Ramayana'. It is also called 'Sita Charitra' (the story of Sita).
The poet who first composed the Ramayana is Valmiki. After the Valmiki Ramayana was
written, many other versions like the 'Ananda Ramayana, 'Adbhuta Ramayana, Vasishta
Ramayana' and 'Sesha Ramayana' also came to be written.
The Valmiki Ramayana ends with the coronation of Rama. The rest of the story, not
narrated by Valmiki, is given in Sesha Ramayana. The story of Lava and Kusha, being taken
up here, is from the Sesha Ramayana.
Valmiki taught his Ramayana first to his two disciples, Lava and Kusha. They used to
sing it very melodiously to the accompaniment of the Veena, a stringed instrument. The
surprising thing is that Rama himself heard Lava and Kusha recite it to him, though he did
not at the time know that they were his sons, and the two boys also did not know that Rama
was their father. How did this coincidence come about?