A New Retelling of Valmiki’s Ancient Epic
Complete and Comprehensive

by  Linda Egenes and Kumuda Reddy

I love the story of the Ramayana and this new version is so simply and beautifully written — it will stir the soul!” -David Lynch, Oscar-nominated director
At last! A retelling of Valmiki’s Ramayana that understands and expresses the role of consciousness in thought, speech, and action. This elegantly written version is the one to read.” Rhoda Orme-Johnson, Ph.D., co-author of The Flow of Consciousness

One of the most important literary works of ancient India, the Ramayana has deeply impacted all aspects of world culture. Not just a literary monument, it is a living cultural and spiritual guide for over a billion people in India, Southeast Asia, Indonesia and beyond. For those not familiar with the Ramayana, it is the most widely read epic in world history, and has been described as the original epic quest—comparable to Star Wars and Romeo and Juliet rolled into one. The story of the enlightened hero Rama—who conquers the greatest forces of evil and is reunited with his beloved, equally enlightened wife Sita—continues to grip the imagination and is surprisingly relevant to today’s readers as they face the moral dilemmas of our modern world.

Consisting of 24,000 verses in seven books, this grand story can be cumbersome to navigate for the modern reader, even in translation. It is for this reason that long-time Transcendental Meditation practitioners and Ayurveda book authors Linda Egenes and Dr. Kumuda Reddy have put together a delightfully straightforward retelling in THE RAMAYANA: A New Retelling of Valmiki’s Ancient Epic—Complete and Comprehensive (a TarcherPerigee paperback; on sale September 6, 2016). Offering a lyrical retelling—in prose and poetry—of the timeless epic of loyalty, betrayal, and redemption, this lucid and eminently readable adaptation will introduce readers to one of the most influential works of world culture.

Author’s comment:

It was a humbling experience to retell the most widely read epic in history, and I took this endeavor very seriously. I wanted to write from a settled mind and a flowing heart, and I relied on my twice-daily Transcendental Meditation practice to help me with that. It was a very joyful, focused and evolutionary time, working on this manuscript. I felt that I was transformed, and I feel honored and grateful to have had this opportunity. I especially want to thank my co-author, Dr. Reddy, who had the inspiration to do this work and asked me to join her.

Links, articles and interviews of interest about the book

Huffington Post review by MUM alumna Supriya Venkatesan KHOE Radio Interview TM Movement publications with articles and interviews about the book: • “Creativity and Consciousness: An Interview with Author Linda Egenes” ( • “Shy Girl Dreaming” (Enjoy TM)  • “Ramayana: The Hero’s Journey and Quest for Enlightenment” (Enlightenment is For Everyone)

Praise for the book

Praise for The Ramayana: A New Retelling of Valmiki’s Ancient Epic—Complete and Comprehensive

“I love the story of the Ramayana and this new version is so simply and beautifully written—it will stir the soul!”—David Lynch, Oscar-nominated film director

“A luminous new rendering of an epic that remains as relevant as it is timeless.”—Craig Pearson, author of The Supreme Awakening

“This book about spiritual freedom should be required reading for all yogis.”—Huffington Post

“This retelling of the Ramayana is an impressive compilation, beautifully narrated, mingled with thoughtful poetic expressions both original and modern. A retelling for all times, it stays true to the original Valmiki Ramayana, and its exalted execution by Egenes and Reddy sounds natural to the ear for modern readers.” —Bal Ram Singh, Ph.D.,
Director, Center for Indic Studies
at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth, and author of Exploring Science in Ancient Indian Texts

“At last! A retelling of Valmiki’s Ramayana that understands and expresses the role of consciousness in thought, speech, and action. This elegantly written version is the one to read.”—Rhoda Orme-Johnson, Ph.D., co-author of The Flow of Consciousness

“The age-old Sanskrit epic poem, The Ramayana, animates timeless themes of good and evil through the story of Rama’s journey. Reimagined by Linda Egenes and Kumuda Reddy, this vernacular prose retelling features narrative clarity, richly textured imagery, and a luminous storytelling voice that leaps off the page. This is a treasure that begs to be read out loud.”—Hertha D. Sweet Wong, Ph.D., assistant chair of the English Department at the University of California, Berkeley, and author of Sending My Heart Back Across the Years: Tradition and Innovation in Native American Autobiography

“In this wonderful newly abridged adaptation by Linda Egenes and Kumuda Reddy, the Ramayana takes on new life.  Egenes and Reddy have given us a text that is lucid and lyrical, eminently readable, and will make a fine addition to libraries and classrooms.”
—Steven Schneider, professor of English at University of Texas-Pan American and editor of The Contemporary Narrative Poem: Critical Crosscurrents

“The Ramayana is one of the great treasures of mankind. It tells a gripping story but it is very long and it is in Sanskrit. Linda Egenes and Kumuda Reddy have retold the story at manageable length in beautiful English and they have kept the dramatic tension, which makes the reader want to read on. I know the story well but I could not wait to see what came next. Well done.”
—Vernon Katz, Ph.D., author of Conversations with Maharishi

“This eminently readable and poetic retelling by Linda Egenes and Kumuda Reddy captures the flavor of the ancient text, brings out philosophical and spiritual truths sometimes glossed over by modern translators, and flows so smoothly it is hard to put down.”—Jack Forem, author of Transcendental Meditation: The Essential Teachings of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi

“Rama, Sita and Lakshmana are resplendent in our minds and ensconced in our hearts as we traverse the beauty, tragedy, and adventure of the Ramayana in this elegant retelling of the classic.”—Saraswati Nagpal, author of Sita, Daughter of the Earth

“Perhaps the best modern retelling to date, this version by Egenes and Reddy is true to Valmiki’s text yet keeps you turning the pages. Will be appreciated by adults and children, Indian and Western audiences alike.”—Chandrika Tandon, Grammy nominee and founder of Soul Chants Music

“This lovely and sensitive adaptation of the Ramayana is easy and enjoyable to read without losing the deeper layers of insight that make the story timeless.  I heartily recommend it!”—Prudence Farrow Bruns, Ph.D. in South Asian Studies, University of California Berkeley, and author of Dear Prudence: The Story Behind the Song

“In this new prose translation of the Ramayana, Linda Egenes and Kumuda Reddy maintain the cadence and richness of language of the original poetic epic. Their retelling is marvelously accessible to the modern reader, adding a welcome freshness to this timeless tale. Furthermore, Sternfeld’s introduction provides a new dimension to understanding the depth and breadth of this universal story.”—Care Connet, poet and author of Diary of the White Bush Clover: A Peace Pilgrimage

“These authors portray Vedic life in its larger and deeper context, bringing out the nobility of the heroic action of the characters. It is beautifully written, suitable for all ages, and keeps the reader engaged. By the end I was moved to tears.”—Susan Andersen, Ph.D., co-author of The Flow of Consciousness

About the Authors


LINDA EGENES, MA, is the author of more than five hundred articles and five books about the benefits of meditation, yoga, and other Vedic techniques for improving health. She is the author of Visits with the Amish: Impressions of the Plain Life and with Kumuda Reddy, M.D., co-authored three books on Maharishi Ayurveda for children and families, as well as All Love Flows to the Self: Eternal Stories from the Upanishads. A practitioner of the Transcendental Meditation technique since 1971 and certified teacher since 1975, Linda is adjunct associate professor of writing at Maharishi University of Management in Fairfield, Iowa, where she lives with her husband, Sanskrit scholar and author Thomas Egenes, Ph.D. – Linda Egenes’ author page on Amazon

KUMUDA REDDY, M.D., a former faculty member and anesthesiologist at Albany Medical College, practiced Western medicine in the United States for more than twenty-five years. After receiving her training in Maharishi Ayurveda, she dedicated herself to bringing its medical and wellness knowledge into her private practice. Dr. Reddy has co-authored eight books on Maharishi Ayurveda and a series of children’s stories called the Timeless Wisdom Series, based on traditional Indian tales that she first heard as a child. Dr. Reddy and her husband, Dr. Janardhan Reddy, divide their time between the U.S. and India. Kumuda Reddy’s author page on Amazon