Ancient Hindu rituals. Hinduism Rituals. The most common rituals practiced in all Hindu households are puja, meditation, silent prayers, yoga, recitation of scriptures from Bhagavad Gita or bhajans, reading religious books, participating in Satsang (prayer meets), performing charitable work, visiting a temple, and chanting the name of their beloved God.
What is the importance of rituals in Hinduism?
The rituals of Hinduism are especially important for the Householders to achieve the three important aims of human life, namely Dharma, Artha and Kama. They are not that important for the pursuit of liberation, except as the means to accumulate good karma and obtain a good birth, or to prepare oneself for the austere life of a renunciant.
How many Hindu rituals are there?! What are the 3 main traditions of Hinduism?! Hindu Rituals, Ceremonies, and Festivals
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Top 6 Unbelievable Ancient Hindu Rituals
Indian cultures and traditions are one of the oldest in the world. The majority of the population in India follow the Hindu religion. Hinduism is one of the most ancient in the world. Like many other religions around the world, Hindus have several godly rituals, beliefs and faiths. Certain rituals are extremely old and have been in existence for thousands of years. There are rituals in Hinduism which are weird and unbelievable. It is hard to believe such religious rituals exist in India even today. You will be surprised to know them.
The 10 crazy ancient Hindu rituals which are unbelievable:
6. Coconut Breaking on Head
We know that knocking on the head with the knuckles is painful. But, do you know in certain parts of South India, coconuts are broken on heads of devotees by the temple priests? It is a religious observance which bring peace and good luck in their struggling life as per the faith and belief of devotees. Sometimes, it injures the head. This dangerous ritual is performed by thousands of devotees who assemble in the temple premises on certain festivals. Even though the act is painful, many do not want to stop the ancient ritual which began in the 19th Century.
5. Animal Sacrifice
Slaughter of animals such as goats, buffaloes and cocks form a major part of a festival to honor a Hindu God. This is a 2000 years old ritual. Many courts in India believe that this act is barbaric and shouldn’t happen at a religious place. According to the faith and tradition, spillage of blood is a must so that the evil spirits vanish. Animal sacrifice is done for the welfare of the land and its people. There is mention of this practice even in Rig Veda, the oldest of Hindu scriptures. The deity is invariably an aspect of Goddess Durga or Kali.
4. Baby Tossing
This is a 700 years old ritual and an annual affair. In Baba Umer Dargah, Solapur, India, babies are thrown at a height of 15m, onto a cloth or bed-sheets held by people. It is considered to bring good health and luck to the children. In the same state of Maharastra, similar practices are observed from a temple tower in a village known as Haranga. The terrified babies scream and sob. But It is hard to watch the terrified babies. But, the participants argue that it is their religious duty. However, the babies’ traumas are not given importance. Despite the protest from India’s National Commission for Protection of Child’s Rights, the rituals still continue.
3. Nag Panchami – Festival of the Snake
This ritual dates back to the times of Mahabarata, the epic Indian story. It is a traditional worship of snakes with milk, sweets, flowers and lamps. Snakes always have great association with Hindu Gods like Shive, Vishnu, Devi and Subramanya. Snakes adorn the neck of Lord Shiva, recline Lord Vishnu and is a weapon of many Gods and Goddesses. To ward off the curse from “Nag” (Snake), devotees worship to bring good luck, good health and to free from snake bites.
2. Bani Festival
In the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh, there is a worship place known as Devaragatta Temple in Kurnool district where devotees throng with long sticks. They hit each other on heads to kill or get killed. Every Dussehra night, the ritual takes place to commemorate Lord Shiva who killed demon.
1. Tongue Piercing & Hooking
Tongue piercing is an ancient practice in India where people have spikes or iron needles or wooden needles driven through their tongues. This ritual mostly happens in Tamil Nadu and West Bengal. The painful ritual is observed in the hope that the searing pain will cleanse their soul and elevate them to a higher status. Insertion of iron hooks into the skin and hanging upside down are the other forms of body piercing to appease the Hindu God, Lord Murugan. The high decibel drumming and chanting during the festival make the devotees to enter into a trance.