October 29, 2009

Tulsi Vivaah...


Today in our India, festival of Tulsi Vivaah is celebrated. Tulsi Vivaah is the marriage of tulsi plant with lord Vishnu or his incarnation Krishna. From the 11th moonlit fortnight, also known as Prabhodini or Devuthni Gyarash [Dev + Utnhi + Gyarash means God(…Dev) wakes up(..uthna) on 11th (…Gyarah) day after Diwali], till the full moon or Pournima of kartik for five days, there continues a tradition of a ritual marriage of the tulsi with Krishna.

Tulsi or tulas is the herb plant and regarded as a holy household plant in our India. It is believed to be a destroyer of demons and evil spirits. Unmarried girls worship it for a happy married life(...unmarried guys wont pray? they dont want happy married life?), married women to be blessed with children and widows to attain salvation(….I think Widower already got salvation that’s why only Widows are supposed to do all the rituals).

It is difficult to find a Hindu house without the Tulsi Vrindavan (…Pedestal). Earlier the pedestal where the tulsi was planted was manually made of clay. Watering the Tulsi Vrindavan, applying sandalwood paste, turmeric and red powder (…kumkum) and also adorning it with flowers and lamps is a tradition observed even today among Hindu women.

During chavath, a canopy(…a.k.a matoli in some places) is erected in front of the Tulsi vrundavan with a variety of fruits and flowers. The Prabodhini ekadishi (….or Devuthni Gyarash)is celebrated as vhodli or dev diwali or choti diwali. It marks the conclusion of chaturmas, a four month period when Lord Vishnu is believed to take a long sleep on ashad shuddha ekadashi and awakens on kartik shuddha ekadashi. Tulsi lagna(…Tusli Marriage) is one of the most important festivals. No marriage ceremony will be held before Tulsi lagna as it does not enjoy religious sanction among Hindus. The clay pedestal(…Tulsi Vrindavan) has today been replaced by a concrete one that varies in shape, size and color. Every year before the Tulsi lagna, the pedestal is painted and decorated. In rural areas, women make square shaped pedestals of clay and apply a paste of cow dung to them. This Tulsi Vrindavan is then decorated with wild flowers and yellow coloured marigold. On tulsi lagna, a tender stick of dino (Leea indica or Bandicoot berry) is brought and designs carved on it.



DINO or Leea Indica

This dino stick symbolically represents the bride groom of the tulsi vrindavan. The Tulsi vrindavan is decorated like a bride. Inside the pedestal in some areas a wild plants along with pods is planted which is decorated with marigold flowers. A stem of sugarcane is also planted. Fruits of Amla (Emblica Officinalis) and Tamarind (…Tamarindus indica) are placed inside the pedestal. Head gears made from pseudo banana stems are tied during the marriage ceremony to the Tulsi as well as dino plants. Akshatas(… or rice grains) are thrown to solemnize the marriage. All marriage rituals are performed on this occasion. Chanting of holy hymns known as mangalashtakas accord a sense of sanctity, associating it with the feelings of having performed a pious deed.

In some areas after solemnizing the marriage, married women light lakshavat ( … wicks of hands spun cotton threads on banana pseudo-stems). The wick bundles (…alos known as Jodvi) are allowed to burn completely. Women then go round the pedestal performing Pradakshina. Married women fast for two days, on tulsi vivah and the day prior to it. They eat vegetarian food which mainly consist of sweet potatoes, tuber roots, fruits and sweet dishes.
Cheers,
-K Himaanshu Meehirs' Shukla...

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Nice blog baby

Kisses & Hugs
Raissa

Anonymous said...

Happy Prabhodini to you dear Mehu.

*Ankita*

Anonymous said...

Nice Info Mr.Hammy Chops

Ronit

Flowers said...

that's incredible. how the plants can marry? It was nice going through your blog. Iflorist.co.uk

atli092 said...

Wonderful article on thulsi vivaah.

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Thanks,
Peter - Herb garden plants

Anonymous said...

wow kewl

Anonymous said...

Awsme dude

Anonymous said...

thanx 4 sharing ths info khimu

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