On April eighth this year we would be celebrating Sri Rama Navami, the birth day of Rama. Rama , the Maryadha Purushothama , the ideal of man hood is respected and revered by very large number of people in India. In fact the most popular epic is Ramayana and not Bhagawatha or Mahabharatha. Possibly you will find only a rare Hindu who does not know or heard about Ramayana. Ramayana, the story of Rama has been translated(rewritten?) in almost all languages in India .It is also true that Ramayana is revered in all parts of India. Because of this , it is natural to expect that worship of Rama being most popular. But this is not true at least in Tamil Nadu and Kerala. The list of big temples in Tamil Nadu includes only about 9 temples and a survey carried out by a college in Madras reports that only 5% of people in Tamil Nadu worship Rama. The great Vaishnavite Bhakthi movement in Tamil Nadu lead by The Azhvars concentrated itself on Lord Ranganatha, Lord Venkateswara and Lord Krishna. Raghu Veera Gadhyam of Vedantha Desika(story of Rama) and Pasurappadi Ramayanam of Periyavachan pillai (again the story of Rama) were the most famous works on Rama by the Vaishnavites of Tamil Nadu. The school of Bhakthi started by sage Raghavendra a Madhwa saint in Tamil Nadu concentrated itself on Rama. Another such Movement is lead by Saint Thyagaraja , who wrote several Carnatic music Krithis on Rama who was chosen God.
Almost the same situation prevails in Kerala also.Though Ezhuthachan’s Adhyathma Ramayanam is almost daily read in the homes of Kerala, The temples dedicated to Rama are few in number compared to other temples. There are not many Malayalam prayers addressed to Rama. The Bhakthi movement in Kerala mostly concentrated itself on Lord Krishna and Lord Vishnu as Padmanabha.
In case of Andhra , I understand that the Bhakthi movement started by Badrachala Ramadasa was very strong and popular. However the Bhakthi movement addressed to Lord Venkatachalapathy appears to be more popular.
I do not know much of North India but as far as I know the BHakthi movement there is concentrated on Lord Krishna , Lord Shiva and Lord Hanuman and not on Rama in all places except Ayodhya.
In my search for stotras on different Gods, I have found the number of Stotras addressed to Rama are comparatively less with most of them finding their origin in Adhyathma Ramayana.
I would like to know about the thoughts of learned members about these points.