The Odyssey and the Ramayana

There is a stark contrast between the way that evildoers are portrayed in the Odyssey and the Ramayana. In the Odyssey, the suitors, who are the evildoers, are portrayed to be cowardly scoundrels who should not be respected. At the end of the Odyssey, Odysseus slays the suitors and their bodies were simply thrown outside without a proper burial. In the Ramayana, the reader is led to dislike Ravana, the main evildoer, but is also led to respect Ravana in some sense. Ravana is described as a great warrior with massive strength and we are told he has received a boon from Indra, the god of gods. At one point in the story, Hanuman thinks to himself, “Ravana would indeed have been a good man if he had thus got Sita too, to be his wife.” When Rama defeats Ravana, Rama has great respect for the dead body and allows Ravana’s brother, Vibhisana, to give Ravana proper funeral rites and take the throne of Lanka.

1 thought on “The Odyssey and the Ramayana

  1. I agree with your points that Ravana is worth to be respected, even though he is evil. Previously, he gave a lot of charity to ascetics. He treated well to his servants. He shared his wealth with his friends, etc. Among these things he has done, he should be given a ordered funeral.

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