Suppose someone due to a lack of substantial knowledge about religion, did not undergo certain traditional rituals like wearing the sacred thread (Janeu) at a young age. Now, with a deeper understanding of the faith, can he fulfil this aspect of religious practice? I am especially interested to know if is appropriate to wear the Janeu after marriage. If so, what is the correct procedure?

  • personal questions cannot be asked on this site according to the rule. It might get closed. So I edited the question to make it more general. Commented Apr 12 at 7:16

3 Answers 3


There are many samskaras (domestic rituals) that Aryas or Hindus perform in daily life. The protocols for performing these Samskaras are described in Grihyasutras, which are part of the Kalpasutras - one of the six divisions of the Vedangas.

Upanayana (janeu or sacred thread ceremony) is one such Samskara. Here I am quoting from Paraskara Grihyasutra associated with the white Yajurveda. Kandika 2 & 3 of the second Kanda of Paraskara Grihyasutra described the process of Upanayanam. To have the clear idea about the entire process, please read Kandika 1-8 from the second Kanda of Paraskara Grihyasutra.

Paraskara Grihyasutra II.2

  1. He should initiate a Brāhmaṇa, when he is eight years old, or in the eighth year after the conception,
  1. Āśvalāyana, when he is eleven years old,
  1. A Vaiśya, when he is twelve years old.
  1. Or according as it is considered auspicious by all (the different families).

As you see it is usually done at an early age (8, 11, 12), however, it can be done at any time based on the decisions of the family involved. However, this is done before marriage. It will be clear to you if you know the meaning of the entire ceremony. Here, I am explaining it briefly.

One thing should be noted this sacred thread ceremony used to be performed when someone decided to go to Guru's ashrama to study the Vedas. This ceremony marks the beginning of someone's journey as a student of the sacred scripture. If you read the entire process, it will be clear to you. During this period he remains a Brahmachari (celebrate).

Paraskara Grihyasutra II.5

  1. He should sleep on the ground and eat no pungent or saline food.
  1. Wearing the staff, worshipping the fire, being obedient to his Guru, going the rounds for alms—(these are the standing duties of students).
  1. He should avoid honey or flesh, bathing (for pleasure), sitting on high seats, going to women, falsehood, and taking what is not given to him.
  1. Let him live forty-eight years as a student for the (four) Vedas,
  1. Or twelve years for each Veda,
  1. Or until he has learnt it.

After coming back from the Guru's residence and completing the study of the Vedas, he becomes Snataka.

If he behaves thus, his fame when he has become a Snātaka (i.e. when he has taken the bath at the end of his studentship) will be (such that people will say of him), 'To-day he stays there; to-day he stays there.' - Paraskara Grihyasutra II.5.31

He comes back (samavartana).

When he has finished the Veda, he should take the bath (by which he becomes a Snātaka); - Paraskara Grihyasutra II.6.1

Now he enters the life of a householder; which means he gets married.

So after getting married, you cannot do this ceremony. That's why guys who missed the opportunity to have this ceremony at the time of marriage, just before the marriage the priest usually does this ceremony for him. But, after getting married this is not possible.

References -


The thread ceremony is to be done at a young age (7 years). It's mandatory to continue to wear it after marriage. It'd be best to consult your family priest for direction.


In present days yagnopavit ceremony is loosing its meaning. On several occasions I have seen prist performing this ceremony just before the wedding.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .