When Rama finds Sita he is suddenly unable to trust her. He believes that she has betrayed him with Ravana. Sita is outraged and protests her innocence. She tells Lakshman to build a fire, the fire will burn her if she has done anything wrong. Rama forces his brother to build the fire. Sita steps into the flames. The flames crackle and burn but refuse to burn her. Sita walks through the flames, unharmed. As she walks the flames turn to flowers. (The subject of many paintings) Rama begs for forgiveness.
Walking Home - Divali
Rama, Sita and their loyal followers travel home, to the Kingdom of Ayodhya in northern India. The band set off and cross the bridge. When they get to the other side, the bridge sinks down under the sea, leaving a trail of rocks jutting out in the sea towards Lanka (still there today – look on a map and the internet.) The band walk across India and on the way, people came out of their houses and place little lamps on their doorsteps to light their way. More and more people light lamps and the band follow the trail of lights home. This is still celebrated today in the Festival of Lights – Divali – where people place lights in their windows to welcome Sita/Lakshmi, wealth and prosperity, into their homes.
'When ever Rama's story is told, my spirit will be there, animating you all' Valmiki