Saturday, October 05, 2013

shraddha = faith, shraaddh = anything done with sincerity and faith, a ritual for the living.

The popular belief is, that shraaddh is a ritual that is done to pay homage to the departed souls of ones forefathers. It comes from the sanskrit word, shraddha, meaning faith and it's literal meaning is, any act that is done with complete sincerity and faith.

Seen in this light (as against - it can be done only by the male child, you need to have a male child because only then can you hope for your shraaddh to be done etc etc) the ritual has relevance even today. We come together, remember the departed, offer a meal to crows and then have a meal together as a prasaad.

Yesterday, I preformed this ritual for my mother, my father performed it for his father and my wife, for her father.

My personal belief is that all rituals are for the living. Including this one. It is to help the living to come to terms with the loss, a way to finish unfinished business, say sorry, thank you and achieve closure. What is your view?