Tulsi Vivah: Significance & Procedure

Tulsi Vivah: Significance & Procedure

Tulsi is considered to be a sacred plant that you can easily find in any Hindu household. It is said that if the wind that is entering your house touches the Tulsi plant it is purified. We will now discuss the legend of the Tulsi plant and why Tulsi Vivah is celebrated.

The Legend of Tulsi Vivah

Tulsi was considered as the wife of Lord Vishnu in the mythology. The story of the Tulsi Vivah is found in the Padma Purana. There was a woman named Brinda. She was a great devotee of Lord Vishnu. She was a very pious woman and was devoted to her husband Jalandhar (the demon king).

Tulsi Vivah 2014

Tulsi Vivah 2014

Jalandhar was very powerful and he wanted to fight and defeat the trinity. However, there was no way to kill Jalandhar as long as his wife Brinda remained faithful to him. Lord Vishnu decided to take the form of Jalandhar and he went to meet Brinda. Brinda was not able to understand that it was the disguise of her husband that she was with. The devotion and the chastity of Brinda were destroyed by this act of Lord Vishnu.

Brinda got extremely upset and angry to know what the Lord had done to her. She cursed him that he will become dark in colour. She also cursed him that he will be separated from his wife. Brinda said that Lord Vishnu will also have to face a similar situation is some point of time. Jalandhar lost the battle and was eventually killed as his wife could no longer protect him. Brinda jumped into the funeral pyre of her husband.

The Curse of Brinda

The curse that Brinda gave actually came true. Vishnu was transformed into the Shaligram stone that is black in colour. Even today you will see that the Shaligram stone is used to worship the Lord Vishnu. In the avatar of Lord Rama,  Lord Vishnu had to suffer from the pain of separating from his wife. This happened when Sita mata was kidnapped by Ravana. Similarly after lord Rama was united with Sita he requested her to give a proof of her chastity. Sita walked into a fire to prove that she was chaste and worthy of Lord Rama. So the curse of Brinda did come true.

Transformation to Tulsi Plant

Lord Vishnu wanted to compensate for what he did to Brinda. This is why he transformed her soul to the Tulsi plant. Lord Vishnu also said that he will marry Brinda in her next birth to make up for the wrongful act that he did to Brinda. Vishnu in the form of the Shaligram stone got married to the Tulsi plant on the day of prabhodini ekadashi. This is the day that is even today celebrated in the form of the Tulsi Vivah. Some people also say that Goddess Laksmi who was the wife of Lord Vishnu killed a demon on this day and she stayed back on earth as the Tulsi plant. However, the first version of the Tulsi Vivah is more accepted.

The Procedure of Tulsi Vivah

We will now discuss how the Tulsi Vivah is performed in the houses and in the temples. This is like a traditional Hindu wedding itself. First a small mandap is made where the wedding is about to be arranged. This mandap is made around the area where the Tulsi plant is placed. The Tulsi plant can be located in any Hindu household. The plant is washed and decorated with a garland.

The Tulsi plant is decorated with a red saree. Some people also place gold ornaments on the plant. The plant is made to look like a bride. It is said that the soul of Brinda gets into the Tulsi plant after the sun sets and post the sun rise the soul leaves the plant. The Shaligram stone is washed and is placed near the Tulsi plant. Sometimes the image of lord Krishna or Vishnu is also used to do this puja. The Shaligram stone is made to wear a dhoti so that it can look like the groom. A cotton thread is used to link the Shaligram stone and the Tulsi plant.

The Rituals

You can invite some neighbours and family to attend the Tulsi Vivah. A priest is invited to complete the Tulsi Vivah. This priest performs the whole procedure of the Tulsi Vivah. After the mantras are recited those attending the Tulsi Vivah throw rice and flowers on the bride and the groom. The Tulsi plant is offered mangalsutra and sindoor to consider the wedding complete.

Tulsi Vivah 2014

Tulsi Vivah 2014

Food and sweets are prepared as in a normal wedding. These are offered all those who are attending the wedding. Prasad is also prepared and it is distributed to those who have attended the wedding. This expense of the Tulsi Vivah is given by a couple who do not have any daughter.

They do the kanyadaan of the Tulsi plant. Giving a daughter as daan is considered to be one of the biggest charities that a person can ever do. This is exactly why many people oft for the Tulsi Vivah. All the offerings that are made in the Tulsi Vivah is given to the priest or to some girl who is to get married soon.

In Saurashtra

In Saurashtra the Tulsi Vivah is grander. Special invites are prepared for this ceremony. The barat comes to the house of the girl and a proper wedding is arranged. People dance around the couple and bhajan is sung. It is incredible that how Tulsi Vivah is celebrated with so much care and devotion even today. You must ensure that you attend one such Tulsi Vivah and be a part of the celebration. This year the Tulsi Vivah ceremony will be on the 4th of November 2014.

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