A wedding mandap

A wedding mandap

Hinduism

Rites of Passage

A newborn child’s father places honey in its mouth and whispers the name of God into its ear. The child is named around the 6th or 12th day of life. When a year old, or more, the child is presented at temple in thanksgiving, and the head is shaved. A boy’s coming of age, or upanayana, is celebrated by investing him with a “sacred thread” which will always be worn over his left shoulder.

Hindus are obliged to marry as a religious duty. The wedding takes place in a mandap which is a kind of canopy which is traditionally made with red and silver colour as a sign of prosperity. The wedding is sealed by the couple taking seven steps round a sacred fire, though there are many cultural practices around marriage, too.

Dead bodies are cremated within houses of death. Relatives make ritual offerings about 12 days after the funeral, to help the soul go on to its next life and to purify the family members.


Information

The Chaplaincy to the University of Glamorgan provides the following information from its own researchers. Each page has been checked by the chaplaincy advisor from the relevant faith group. Within every major religion, there are differences of opinion between leaders, and between leaders and followers. We only aim to provide an overview.