[Advaita-l] A question on 'shikhai'
Jaldhar H. Vyas
jaldhar at braincells.com
Thu Jul 12 16:19:28 CDT 2012
On Sat, 7 Jul 2012, Murali S wrote:
> Are there explicit references to shikhai(tuft) in the Vedas,anything
> about it being mandatory.
The earliest reference I have been able to find is in the
Katyayanashrautasutra, the vedanga dealing with shrauta yajnas in the
shuklayajurveda. In describing preparations for the darshapaurnamaseshtis
(new and full moon sacrifices) sutra 2.1.9 says:
keshashmashru vapate vA.ashikham |
"[the yajamana] may optionally get his head and mustache shaved except
The sutra style is to be as compact as possible leaving out any extraneous
material. That and the matter of fact way in which the shikha is
mentioned indicate the author assumes his audience knows what shikha means
and do not require further explanation.
> Is it mandatory to remove the hair(except tuft) for a brahmachari/grahastha?
That has been the custom in many parts but we can also commonly see people
keeping a shikha as part of a normal hair style. (Which for what its
worth is what I do.)
> Similarly any references to Kaccha
> in the Veda.
The wearing of an upavastra is assumed but I think it is a stretch to
assume the contemporary clothing styles are necessarily meant.
One has to look at shistachara not just texts to know exactly what to do.
Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>
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