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The 16 samskaras are: 1. Garbhadhana (Conception) This samskara is performed by parents and consists of fervent prayer for a child in order to fulfil the obligation to continue the human race. 2. Punsavana (Fetus protection) This samskara is performed during the third or fourth month of pregnancy. A priest recites Vedic hymns to invoke divine qualities ...


15

Hindus believe that every aspect of life is sacred. That is why each significant stage, from conception to cremation, is celebrated as a reminder that life is a gift from God which should be duly respected and lived according to His wishes. The nearest English word for samskara is sacrament, related to the phrase 'rite of passage'. Although the number of ...


13

Ayurvedic texts are not Veda. The Chhandogya Upanishad (V. x. 5-6.) answers this question directly. It says Having dwelt there [in the lunar world] till their [good] works are consumed, they return again the same way they came. They [first] reach the akasha, and from the akasha the air. Having become air, they become smoke; having become smoke, they ...


8

In ancient times, most women would have no education in the Vedas, and they would just become housewives. But in contrast to these women, known as Sadyovadinis, there was a very small number of women, known as Brahmavadini, who would abandon the material lifestyle that was the norm for women and instead went to a Ashram and learn the Vedas just as men did. ...


6

Why Karn Chhedan is required ? Sushruta Samhitavolume 1: - Chapter XVI - Puncturing and Bandaging the ear - Karna-Vyadha-Vandha-Vidhi-adhyaya.Provides us some explanation. The lobules of the ears of an infant are usually pierced through for protecting it (from the evil influences of malighant stars and spirits) and for the purposes of ornamentation ...


6

First hair removal that is also known as Chudakarma is mostly performed either in first year or third year. But some scriptures allow to perform it in fifth year, seventh year or according to family customs. This Samskara is necessary for spiritual growth. Manu Smriti 2.35 According to the teaching of the revealed texts, the Kudakarman (tonsure) must ...


5

(This answers the question in the title. I think there must be another question for the rest) The literal meaning of the word 'Dvija' means a twice-born. So at the moment the upanayana is performed, a person becomes a 'Dvija'. This is because the person is considered to be born again at the end of upanayana. Note that even birds are called 'dvija' since ...


5

This issue arises only when we relate Garbhadhana with "varna". We must understand that all the samskaras are not related to varna. I have given references of "varna" in my answers here and here to show that varna is not fixed but it can even change after birth and samskaras. The word is derived from "garbha" (womb) and "AdhAna) means "to keep , to ...


5

There is no recognized or formal stage after sannyas. Individual maths or individual gurus may give some title or other such thing, but there is no generally accepted stage after sannyas nor is there anything in scripture. There are different sects of sadhus and different sects will wear different colors. Most people when they think of sannyas, think of ...


5

False. The antim samskara (funeral rites) of Ravana's body was performed by Vibishana. After the death of Ravana in war with Rama. Rama asks Vibishana to perform funeral rites to Ravana's body In the meanwhile, Rama spoke to Vibhishana as follows: "Let the obsequies of your brother be performed and let these crews of women be consoled." [93, ...


4

Antim sanskar is also referred to as Antyeṣṭi (अन्त्येष्टि) is a composite Sanskrit word of antya and iṣṭi, which respectively mean "last" and "sacrifice". Together, the word means the "last sacrifice". Similarly, the phrase Antima Sanskara literally means "last sacred ceremony, or last rite of passage". Regarding your question who performs the last rites ...


4

Yes anyone who has undergone the Upanayana Samskara is a Dvija. But, as per Smritis, only the males belonging to the first three Varnas (i.e Brahmin, Kshatriya and Vaishya) are eligible for the Samskara and hence for Dvijattva. Dvi+ Ja literally means who are born twice. For them the first birth is from the mother and the second is through the initiation ...


3

As mentioned in a comment, many scriptures that condemn the act, are given in this article. But i am not using that article as my reference. The Devi Bhagavata Purana condemns the act at many places, irrespective of whether a Vaishnava doing it or even a Shaiva. Here are few such passages: 32-40. Hearing their piteous cries, Durvâsâ, the prince of the ...


3

All the Smritis and various other scriptures like Puranas and Tantras talk about these Samskaras. See the following verses from the Yajnvalkaya Smriti's Chapter 1: XI.—In season, the Garbhadhana; before the quickening, the Pumsavana ; in the sixth or the eighth month, the Simanta; on delivery, the Jatakarman.—11. XII.—On the eleventh day, the ...


3

Vedas do not have any gender based discrimination. When it comes to vaidika dharma and practices both men and women enjoy same freedom. However, after the advent of sanyasa, the society slowly turned towards more male dominated and male chauvinistic in nature. Slowly women were deprived from their basic religious and social rights which were sanctioned by ...


3

An advice from Bhagavad-gītā: param drištvā nivartatē (2.59). By getting a higher experience, one gives up the previous interest. So one can gradually change his faith by hearing about the advantages of spiritual practice and the defects of sensual urges. This is again corroborated in Bhagavad-gītā 9.2: rāja-vidyā rāja-guhyam pavitram idam uttamam ...


3

I asked this question to a vaidika brahmanar. He said, since most grooms nowadays do not know garbhadana samskara mantra (which must be said in private at night when husband and wife are together), and since it is not practical/comfortable to invite a priest to the home on a specific night, the garbhadana mantra is told (by the priest and repeated by the ...


3

I'm only going to answer this question: In which month of pregnancy a soul enters into a new body (foetus)? According to Garbha Upanishad, the soul enters the foetus in the seventh month: सप्तमे मासे जीवेन संयुक्तो भवति | अष्टमे मासे सर्व संपुर्णो भवति ||2|| English Translation: In the seventh month, [the embryo] comes to have the jīva (...


3

Having received sannyas and being of Vivekananda's lineage, let me clarify a few points. Sai's answer is good and mostly true. Vivekananda and the direct disciples of Ramakrishna received their sannyas robes from Ramakrishna, they did not receive their names from him. Vivekananda actually used several names before deciding himself to take the name of ...


2

What is the Purpose of Own Antyesthi (Cremation) before taking Sanyasa? It is because the rites are performed when the body dies. Similarly when one takes up Sannyasa, it is symbolic that His body attachment is now dead. That is one has cut off all ties with His physical body. Therefore the cremation rites are performed. Paramahansa Yogananda describes ...


2

In Sanskrit the word is namah + te = namaste which means “I bow to you” - my greetings, salutations or prostration to you. The word ‘namaha’ can also be literally interpreted as "na ma" (not mine). It has a spiritual significance of negating or reducing one's ego in the presence of another. In Kannada, it is called Namaskara and Namaskaragalu; in Tamil, ...


1

Krishna says in the Gita 2.62-3 (Swami Nikhilananda translator): When a man dwells on objects, he feels an attachment for them. Attachment gives rise to desire, and desire breeds anger. From anger comes delusion; from delusion, the failure of memory; from the failure of memory, the ruin of discrimination; and from the ruin of discrimination the man ...


1

It appears so. From the book Hindu Dharma: The Universal Way of Life by Swami Chandrasekarendra Saraswati: The rites performed before a child is born are intended for the birth of a male child (niṣeka, puṃsavana, sīmanta). ... Astronauts are kept in isolation before being sent up in space and after their return. Mantras have their own ...


1

The Brahmins who officiate as priests for the Sudras are condemned in the scriptures.. See the following verses from the Manu Smriti: 11.42. Those who, obtaining wealth from Sudras, (and using that) offer an Agnihotra, are priests officiating for Sudras, (and hence) censured among those who recite the Veda. 11.43. Treading with his foot on the ...


1

Burial of the dead is a common practice in South India. There are separate places for burial of the dead and separate for cremation. This practice is prevalent in some castes. I know that Shudras and bury their dead ones and make a memorial over the buried place. There are also many other communities which follow burial process not only for children, but ...


1

Choti on the Male Head Sushrut rishi, the foremost surgeon of Ayurveda, describes the master sensitive spot on the head as Adhipati Marma, where there is a nexus of all nerves. The shikha protects this spot. Below, in the brain, occurs the Brahmarandhra, where the sushumnã (nerve) arrives from the lower part of the body. In Yog, Brahmarandhra ...


1

The female icons wear jewelry that is mistaken to be upavitam but they are not. Thus I contacted a Tamil stapati who makes this kind of sculptures. As per his statement, these three strands have nothing to do with upavita. [Brahmin thread] It is called “sannaviram.” It is a designed ornament made with pearls or similar material and worn by women for ...


1

Here is what R.B. Pandey says in this excerpt from his paper "The Hindu Sacraments (Samskaras)": Chudakarana (tonsure) is the eighth samskara[.]... According to the Grihya Sutras, the chudakarana ceremony should take place at the end of the first year or before the expiry of the third year, though later authorities extend the age to the seventh year. Now ...


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