[Advaita-l] Shikha and Kundala

Siva Senani Nori sivasenani at yahoo.com
Tue Mar 23 06:36:09 CDT 2010


From: Jaldhar H. Vyas jaldhar at braincells.com

I have kept Shikha since I had upanayana but because I did not know any better and my father was rather irreligious in those days I never had the chuDakarana.  I intend to rectify this when my own son has upanayana in a couple of years.

> As I know, Kacchham (5 yards dhoti) is to be worn by Grihastas and simple dhoti by Brahmacharis.

This is another local custom.  We Gujaratis don't really make a distinction.

-- In AP, Brahmacharis wear what we call a gochi (langoTa in Hindi) and then wrap a piece of cloth the way men wear a lungi. Grihastas wear a longer piece of cloth, one end of which is stuffed into the waist belt on the back side serving the purpose of gochi. This is what is meant by dhoti here. Also Brahmacharis have only bhasmadhAraNa whereas grihastas also wear the tilak. The agnikaaryam prescribed for Brahmacharis has sixteen offerings whereas the taNDulahoma prescribed for grihastas has a single offering.

On Thu, 4 Mar 2010, sriram nagaraj wrote:

> Dear List Members,
> I am planning on keeping the traditional tuft (Shikha) this August when I visit India again.


> I would like to know if earrings (Kundala) can be worn by Brahmacharis or if it is reserved for Grihastas.

As per the pAraskara GrhyasUtra, chuDakaraNa saMskAra (piercing of the ears) should take place at 2 or 3 years or "yathA ma~ngalaM" which is interpreted as "according to the local/family tradition" which in our case means at the time of upanayana. Hopefully other list members will speak up if southern customs are different from this.

-- My understanding is that all the samskaaras, due till then, are performed at the time of Upanayana along with prayaSchitta just to be on the safe side; as a part of this chUDakaraNa is also performed. praayaSchittas are also done during the final samskaara - last rites - which cover all lapses, all samskaaras - done or not during the lifetime and also all the unspeakable crimes that one may have committed.


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