Showing posts with label Mangal Sutra. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Mangal Sutra. Show all posts

Hinduism - What Is Attitude Towards Widows In a Hindu Society?


Given the traditional belief that a Hindu woman's primary function is that of a wife and mother, being a widow is seen as the worst tragedy that can befall a woman and is viewed as the karmic fulfilment of some heinous past act.

Because the basic idea of the marriage rite is that the bride's identity is amalgamated with the groom's, a woman without a spouse was seen to have lost her individuality.

Remarrying was also out of the question for her since she had already assumed her late husband's identity.

A lady was obliged to remove all the symbols of a married woman as soon as her husband died, including wiping red vermilion from her hair part, shattering her glass bangles, and, in southern India, cutting the thread on her mangal sutra.

She was banned to wear jewelry, colorful clothes, or other physical adornments for the rest of her life, was required to keep her hair trimmed short, and was required to dedicate herself to religious deeds in honor of her deceased spouse.

She was deemed an unhappy and unfavorable person since she had been widowed, and she was barred from any auspicious ceremonies, spending the rest of her life performing the domestic chores.

The practice of burning a widow on her husband's funeral pyre, known as sati, was popular in certain areas of India, although it was uncommon in others.

In reality, there was a lot of variance on this bleak image.

The age of a woman when she was widowed, whether she had children, and the social position of her husband's family were the most important determinants.

A widowed lady in her eighties would most certainly remain the family matriarch, a young widow with boys would keep her family status via her offspring, and even a child widow in a rich family might live a somewhat comfortable life, although with various constraints.

A widow's situation would be considerably more insecure if one or more of these characteristics were missing, and there is little question that many widows had tough lives in the past.

Even in contemporary times, a lady whose spouse dies early is often seen as unlucky and hence a source of ill luck.

One of the main aims of nineteenth-century Hindu reformers was to improve the situation of widows, and it has grown increasingly frequent for widows to remarry, despite the fact that some of the most traditional Hindus do not accept this.

You may also want to read more about Hinduism here.

Be sure to check out my writings on religion here.

Hinduism - What Is A Mangal Sutra In A Hindu Marriage Ceremony?



Mangal Sutra ("prosperous strand") - Married ladies in southern India wear this symbol to show their marital status.

Because their potential generative force may be manifested via socially sanctioned procreation, married women are seen to be innately auspicious.

The mangal sutra is generally described as a simple thread, sometimes tinted yellow with turmeric, in accounts from many centuries ago; in modern times, the mangal sutra is often described as an intricate neck lace.

When a woman wears a mangal sutra, it means she has a live spouse and is therefore a vessel of fortunate attributes.

For these reasons, when a lady is widowed, she must remove her mangal sutra, as well as any other marital symbols.

You may also want to read more about Hinduism here.

Be sure to check out my writings on religion here.