Rama is said to the very embodiment of Dharma. That which upholds, which nourishes, which protects, which safeguards the universe, that is Dharma. Without Dharma, the world cannot exist. As long as we practise the principles of Dharma, till then, the life in the world will be happy and prosperous. Rama means Dharma, Dharma means Rama. Since He practised the principle of Dharma from His birth till His physical end in His life, Rama became another name for Dharma. Dharma is of many types. As a son, He upheld the ways in which a son should conduct himself towards his father. He also discharged obligation to His mother, Kaikeyi, without hurting her in any way though it was a very difficult thing for Him. Even when He went to the forest, He upheld the duty of a king. He destroyed many demons and also protected many sages and upheld the principles of spirituality. That is actually the Dharma of a Kshatriya.
When Sita requested Him, in order to fulfil the obligation of a good husband, He went after the golden deer. He wanted to discharge the duty of a husband towards the wife; therefore, He walked through the whole country, went where Sita was kept and protected Sita also. His duty towards His brothers, especially to Lakshmana who followed Him to the forest, He upheld when he was laid unconscious by Nagastra, a serpent arrow, and then He was ready to even sacrifice His life for the sake of His brother. When Ravana was vanquished in the war and Lanka was won over, Lakshmana, in fact, pleaded with Rama, “Now that You have given away Ayodhya to Bharata, why not we rule over Lanka?” Then Rama upheld His duty towards the country by saying, “My birthplace and My motherland is more important, is higher for Me than heaven.” He also discharged His obligation towards a friend like Sugriva by conquering Vali and giving back the kingdom of Kishkinda to Sugriva.
Finally, he had to sacrifice for the sake of Rajadharma, His Vyaktidharma or individual Dharma. He underwent many difficulties, underwent many hardships in order to win back Sita, as a good husband, as a duty towards His wife, but finally He had to sacrifice it as a king in order to protect the Rajadharma. Even His duty as a husband, He sacrificed, in order to uphold His duty as a king. It is necessary that we practise Dharma and protect it. If you analyse what is Dharma, the family Dharma is higher than individual Dharma. For the sake of the nation, we can even give up our social Dharma. For the sake of God, we can give up the whole world. The Dharma of a wife is to uphold the Dharma of the husband. Ramayana means the path taken by Rama. When we study the sacred story of Rama, we can also become like Rama.