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Why women put sindoor?

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Sindooor or vermilion holds lot of importance in Indian society. The tradition of application of sindoor in the parting of hair by married Hindu women is considered extremely auspicious and is being carried on since centuries. It is a visible expression of their desire for their husbands' longevity.Traditionally therefore, widows did not wear vermilion. But most of these people in India and around the world do not know the reason and just following the crowd on the name of custom or tradition. So, I decided to do some research and find out the truth behind it and found out some really knowledgeable and must share stuff.

Why women put sindoor?


Well there are two type of belief behind this custom (tradition). One is traditional belief i.e. what people believe and other is scientific belief . We will talk about both traditional and scientific (or ancient) belief with some of its history one by one:

◾Traditional Belief (what people think):


Let’s cast a glance on the history of sindoor in ancient India- Female figurines of Harappa period found during the archeological excavation in Mehrgarh (Baluchistan) show them with the use of sindoor in hair partition. Sindoor was also applied by Parvati, consort of Lord Shiva, in her hair parting. Parvati, the crown-jewel of all women, bestows grace and power upon the married ladies putting vermillion on their parting. As per Ramayana, Sita used to apply sindoor in her hair parting to please her husband Lord Rama. Seeing her, Hanumana also started to smear sindoor on his body to please Rama. Even now also, devotees offer sindoor on Hanuman idols. According to Mahabharata, Draupadi, the wife of Pandavas wiped off her sindoor disgustingly, after the episode, when Dushshan striven to strip her saree in the Hastinapur court. As per a legend, Radha, the lover of Lord Krishna turned kumkum sindoor into a flame-like design on her forehead. Sindoor has also been mentioned in several Puranas, Lalitha Sahasranama and Adi Shankaracharya ‘s Soundarya Lahari. Sindoor is also offered to Lord Ganesha. “Sindoor Lal Chadhayo Gajamukha Ko”, popular Ganesh Aarti in Marathi language was also included in Bollywood movie Vaastav (1999). Sindoor is used for worshiping Hindu goddesses like Shakti and Lakshmi. Sindoor is applied by Saivites, Vaisnavs and Swaminarayan on their forehead.

The tradition of application of sindoor in the parting of hair by married Hindu women is considered extremely auspicious and is being carried on since centuries. It is a visible expression of their desire for their husbands' longevity

◾Scientific (Ancient) Belief:


The application of sindoor is not just a ritual, it also stimulates good health. On one hand it serves as a longevity prayer for the husband, and on the other it keeps a tab on the woman’s physical well-being. The sindoor is prepared using mercury, turmeric and lime. Mercury acts as a catalyst that helps to ease stress and strain. It also helps in keeping the brain active and alert. Other than this, mercury also helps in controlling blood pressure, activating sexual drive and libidinal energy.

Now one question might come in your mind that why only women need this not men.

The reason is when girl gets married then she needs to leave her parent's house and move to her husband's house. The environment get changed and new relations come into existence. At sudden, everything gets changed. The people who were not nothing for her, now become everything. This change might put stress. Thats why, it is suggested to put sindoor after marriage.

Now one another question might come in your mind that why widows are not allowed because they are also facing a lot of stress

The reason is : The sindoor is prepared using mercury, turmeric and lime. Mercury acts as a catalyst that helps to ease stress and strain. It also helps in keeping the brain active and alert. Other than this, mercury also helps in controlling blood pressure, activating sexual drive and libidinal energy. This is why, a widow or an unmarried woman is forbidden from applying sindoor.


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