Anger – Aristotle, Arunachala Kavi & Tyagaraja

“Anybody can become angry – that is easy, but to be angry with the right person and to the right degree and at the right time and for the right purpose, and in the right way – that is not within everybody’s power and is not easy. “

Aristotle

In his musical drama Rama Natakam, Tamil poet and composer Arunachala Kavi describes the scene between Sita and Rama when the latter prepares to leave for the jungle. Rama is reluctant to take Sita along with him. Sita’s subsequent anger is expressed in the song “Eppadi Manam” in the raga Huseini as she insists on accompanying her husband. Was her anger justified?

The same scene is recounted by Carnatic composer Tyagaraja in his song “Ramachandra nee daya” in the raga Surati. The composer wonders if Rama was hurt by Sita’s words when she  rebuked him saying that her father had gotten a woman in the guise of a son-in-law! Were her words justified?

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