Ayodhya, one of the ancient cities of India, has been included in the Hindu mythological history in the sacred Sapta Puris of Ayodhya, Mathura, Maya (Haridwar), Kashi, Kanchi, Avantika (Ujjaini) and Dwarka. Ayodhya is described in the Atharva Veda as the city of God and its prosperity has been compared to heaven. According to Skanda Purana, the word Ayodhya is ‘A’ car Brahma, ‘Y’ car Vishnu and ‘D’ car is form of Rudra.
There have been many great warriors, sages and incarnations in Ayodhya. Lord Rama was also born here. According to Jainism, 5 Tirthankaras including Adinath were born here. Ayodhya has been counted in the first place among the ancient Saptpuris of India. According to Jain tradition, 22 of the 24 Tirthankaras belonged to the Ikshvaku dynasty. Ayodhya is also the birthplace of four other Tirthankaras along with the first Tirthankar Adinath (Rishabhdev ji) out of these 24 Tirthankaras. According to Buddhist beliefs, Buddha had resided in Ayodhya or Saket for 16 years.
Who founded Ayodhya?
Situated on the banks of river Saryu, this city was founded by Vaivasvata Manu Maharaj, son of Vivasvan (Sun) according to Ramayana. According to the history of the Mathurs, Vaivasvata Manu was born around 6673 BC. Kashyap was born to Marichi, the son of Brahma. Vivasvan from Kashyapa and Vaivasvata Manu was the son of Vivasvan.
Vaivasvata Manu had 10 sons – Ila, Ikshvaku, Kushanam, Arishta, Dhrishta, Narishyanta, Karusha, Mahabali, Sharyati and Prishadha. In this, the Ikshvaku clan itself expanded more. There have been many great kings, rishis, arihants and gods in the Ikshvaku clan. Later in the Ikshvaku clan, Lord Shri Ram became. Ayodhya was ruled by the people of this dynasty till the Mahabharata period.
How was it established?
According to mythology, when Manu asked Brahma to build a city for himself, he took him to Vishnu. Vishnuji told him a suitable place in Saketdham. Vishnu sent the Devasilpi Vishwakarma along with Brahma and Manu to settle this city. Apart from this, Maharishi Vashishtha was also sent with him to find a suitable place for his Ramavatar. It is believed that Leela Bhoomi was selected by Vashishtha on the banks of river Saryu, where Vishwakarma built the city. According to Skanda Purana, Ayodhya is seated on the wheel of Lord Vishnu.
Who ruled Ayodhya?
In all parts of North India, such as Kaushal, Kapilvastu, Vaishali and Mithila, the rulers of Ayodhya’s Ikshvaku dynasty had established kingdoms. The origin of the history of Ayodhya and Pratishthanpur (Jhunsi) is related to Manu, the son of Lord Brahma. Just as the establishment of Pratishthanpur and the Chandravanshi rulers here is associated with Ail, the son of Manu, who was made Ila by the curse of Shiva, similarly Ayodhya and its Surya dynasty began with Ikshvaku, the son of Manu.
After Lord Shri Ram, Lava settled Shravasti and its independent mention is found for the next 800 years. It is said that Kush, the son of Lord Shri Ram, once again rebuilt the capital Ayodhya. After this, its existence continued for the next 44 generations of Suryavansh. From Ramachandra to the Dwapar period Mahabharata and much later, we find mentions of the Suryavanshi Ikshvakus of Ayodhya. Brihadratha of this dynasty was killed in the battle of ‘Mahabharata’ at the hands of Abhimanyu. Ayodhya was ruined after the war of Mahabharata, but even during that period, the existence of Shri Ram Janmabhoomi was safe, which remained intact till about the 14th century.
Scholars like Bentley and Pargiter have given the time of their establishment on the basis of ancient Indian texts like ‘Graha Manjari’ etc. Supposed to be around 2200. King Ramchandraji’s father Dasharatha is the 63rd ruler in this dynasty.
For many years after Brihadratha, this city remained under the rulers of Magadha from the Mauryas to the Guptas and Kanauj. In the end, Sayyid Salar, nephew of Mahmud Ghazni, established Ottoman rule here. He was killed in Bahraich in 1033 AD. After that, after Timur, when the kingdom of the Shakas was established in Jaunpur, Ayodhya came under the Sharkis. Especially in 1440 AD during the reign of Shak ruler Mahmud Shah. Babur established the Mughal state in 1526 AD and his commander attacked here in 1528 and got the mosque built, which was demolished in 1992 during the Ramjanmabhoomi movement due to the temple-mosque dispute.
Ayodhya is a famous city of Ghats and Temples. The Saryu river flows through here. There are 14 major Ghats on the banks of the Saryu River. Among them, Gupta Dwar Ghat, Kaikeyi Ghat, Kaushalya Ghat, Papmochan Ghat, Laxman Ghat etc. are particularly noteworthy.
Ram Janmabhoomi Temple
This place is the birth place of Lord Shri Ram, the beloved of Ramdoot Hanuman. Rama was a historical great man and there is ample evidence for this. According to research, it is known that Lord Rama was born in 5114 AD. The Navami of Chaitra month is celebrated as Ram Navami. It is said that in 1528, Babar’s commander Mirbaki built the Babri Masjid by demolishing the temple situated at Ram Janmabhoomi in Ayodhya.