Ramcharitmanas enjoys the place of pride among the hundreds of epics
narrating the tale of Lord Ram not only in Indian languages but also
in several languages of South-East Asia. It is venerated not only
by Ramís ardent devotees but also learned scholars who admire
it for its poetic beauty and ethical import.
For a long time the need was being felt for an abridged version of
Ramcharitmanas for a growing section of the present-day reader, both
in India and abroad, characterised by preference for English language
and shortage of time.
This volume amply fulfils that need. Being based on a tried and tested
abridged edition in Hindi, namely Manas Mangal, it presents the gist
of the original Ramcharitmanas.
The success of The Spirit of Ramcharitmanas lies in the prudent pruning
of the original in a manner that retains the flavour of the original
and keeps in tact the moral, ethical, literary and aesthetic content
of Manas which lend it the semblance of a scripture.
The author, Dr. Aruna Sitesh (1945-2007), was a teacher of English
literature and a well-known Hindi writer, was the Principal of I.P.
College, Delhi, University of Delhi (1997-2007), a Fulbright Fellow
at the University of Chicago (1991-92) and Visiting Scholar at Rockefeller
Foundation Study Center, Bellajio, Italy (1993). She edited Pratibha
India for 24 years and was one of the Founder-Trustees of Sneh Bharti
Widely published in literary journals and periodicals, she authored
six short story collections in Hindi and published as many critical
studies and edited works in English. Recipient of many honours and
awards including the Kriti Samman, Sahastrabdi Hindi Sewa Samman,
Mahadevi Varma Kriti Samman and Indira Priyadarshni award.
Her story Teesari Dharati is anthologised among the immortal Hindi
short stories currently under publication by Sahitya Akademi.