Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Keshanta - 13th Shodasa Samskara

When a boy grows into his teens he attains maturity. Sprouts of hair appear on his chin and upper lip. The Keshānta Samskārā is performed in the sixteenth
A Tamil Hindu girl (center) 
in 1870 wearing a half-saree, 
flowers and jewelry from her 
Ritu Kala Sanskara rite of passage.
year for boys. An auspicious day is selected and worship of Lord Ganesha and family deities performed. With the chanting of mantras the boy’s hair is removed. This marks the transition from boyhood to adulthood. Godāna (gifting a cow) is part of the ceremony where the student gifts a cow to his Guru.

For girls, the ritushuddi ceremony is performed when she attains maturity - after menarche or first menstruation. This milestone in a girl's life is observed by her family and friends, with gifts and her wearing a sari for the ritual.

Subsequent to the Muslim invasion when Hindu religion suffered and early marriage became common, Keshānta began to be considered as marking the end of the Brahmacharya.


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