Why we tie mango leaves on threshold of the door?
Whenever there is a celebration in the house, you will see that mango leaves are sewn on a string and are tied on the threshold of the door. Not only main door, but all the doors are well tied with the same. This not only looks beautiful but auspicious too.
As per Indian traditions and Vedic injunctions, Mango leaves are considered to be very auspicious and hence, they are used in Kalash Sthapana and other important Puja procedures. It is also used to purify the place by sprinkling water by a bunch of 5 mango leaves.
The scientific reason behind putting mango leaves are:
- Their wonderful property of warding off harmful bacteria and viruses away. Mango leaves have some aromatic compounds, which not only release wonderful aroma on being crushed or boiled in water but also, when hung in air.
- Hanging them releases various compounds which kill the pathogens away and create a nice and clean atmosphere. This positive atmosphere creates a positive effect on the mind of the individual.
- The green leaves like other plants release the useful oxygen and saves us from the harmful carbon dioxide.
- The mango leaves have been known for their unique traits even during the ancient era in the Hindu scriptures.
- Mango has been revered as the symbol of fertility. God of Love or Lord Kamdeva is also connected with mango leaves in the ancient tales.
Beginnings are an epitome of hopes, happiness and immense enthusiasm. The Hindu New Year or Gudi Padwa or also called as Ugadi is widely celebrated to inaugurate the Hindu year. This is the first day of the Indian month of Chaita according to the lunar calendar. This day also marks the beginning of new season and end of the Rabi crops. People from all around India perform special rituals on this day and welcome the New Year with immense joy.
The preparations for this special day include proper cleansing of the house and decorating the home at its best. The family members install the Gudi at the entrance of their residence by taking a long stick, a sacred cloth which is mainly red or yellow in colour and a Kalash. After placing the kalash it is adorned with mango leaves and flowers. This ceremony is highly sacred and considered to bring happiness, prosperity and success for the family.
The festival is celebrated in honour of Maratha Shivaji Maharaj, a great king who had a kingdom that spread across the entire part of western India. This is the reason people worship the Gudi which is a cloth which flies like a flag that is usually a sign of victory in an army.
This day also represents love and devotion between the wife and husband. On this day newly married daughters with their husbands are invited for special meals and resents. Thus this is the festival where families and relatives get together to celebrate the joy. Special delicacies are also prepared like Shrikhand and Poori or Puran Poli in Maharashtra and a mixture of six tastes called Ugadi Pachhadi or Bevu Bella in South India.
This year Gudi Padwa is on 8th April 2016 and we wish that it brings new ray of hope in everyone’s life.
The Goddess of Shakti- Ma Durga is worshipped during the sacred nine days for receiving pious blessings. The devotees seek for love, peace, happiness, kindness and all the natural qualities of the soul, which are hidden under the glitters of material world. Goddess Durga bestows her devotees with the strength to revive back the original traits and protect them against the negativity.
To perform the puja adhering to the customs, it is important to follow a proper procedure.
Kalash Sthapana/ Ghata sthapana:
- Put the layer of clean soil in an earthen pot and then sow barley seeds into it. Sprinkle water on it and repeat the process for a second layer. Sprinkle more water to set the soil.
- Take a kalash made of copper or earthen and fill it with Gangajal. Put scent, flowers and coins in it. Tie mauli or red scared thread on the neck of the kalash. Place mango leaves on the mouth of the kalash and cover it with a lid. Put rice over the lid and a dry coconut wrapped in a red cloth.
- Put the prepared kalash on the earthen pot of barley and this completes the ghata sthapana. This kalash should not be touched during the nine days.
- One diya is lit close to this Kalash which is supposed to burn endlessly for nine days. This is known as Akhand Jyoti.
- As the name suggests, the puja is performed with five things- Scent, Flower, Dhoop, Deepak and Naivedya. Offer the five puja samagri to the deity with complete faith and humility.
Chowki Sthapana :
- The idol of Now Goddess Durga is installed, by spreading the red cloth on chowki and tying Mauli around it. Now place idol or picture of Goddess Durga on the chowki.
Invoke Goddess Durga and request the goddess to accept your prayers and to oblige you by residing into the Kalash for nine days. The prayers must be offered whole heartedly and the devotees must pray all the nine days and read Durga Saptashati.
Indian weddings are all about a festive celebration among two families, that unites them together in the auspicious bond of love. Traditional values and cultures are most highlighted during the ceremonies beginning from engagement to the wedding day. Yet the big fat wedding doesn’t end here till the newly-wed couple arrives at the door of the house, thinking it to be the completion of all the customs but to their surprise so much more is waiting for them.
Indians must have experienced or watched the post wedding customs in all the drama series and movies on television, in which the bride and groom are warmly welcomed by the groom’s family at the door step. Here we’ll discuss further about their relevance.
The Dwar Roka ceremony is performed in which the couple is not allowed to enter the house, until the groom gives some expensive gift or cash to her sister and other cousins. The sister-in-law demands a gift from her brother as it is a symbol of the beginning of new relationships and ties a hot and sweet bond between the bride and her sister-in-law.
Then the mother-in-law welcomes the couple with the traditional ‘Aarti’ and the bride enters with her right foot and kicks a vessel filled with rice and coins. The Griha pravesh ceremony is a house warming ceremony to fill up the space with kindness, tolerance, patience, generosity, humility and selfless love. By kicking the vessel at the doorstep, it symbolise the beginning of new era for the family and it denotes the arrival of happiness and wealth in her marital home. Bride being the symbol of Goddess Lakshmi, is the sign of wealth and prosperity, thus it signifies the arrival of wealth and prosperity. The reference of ‘Kalash’ has also been made in the Rigveda considering it a symbol of prosperity. It is a literal cosmos transceiver.
These ceremonies neutralises the evil aura, inside and outside the house, removing all the negative energies and bringing a new ray of positivity along with the new bride.
Contributed By: Meenakshi Ahuja