Refutation of the criticism about ‘the sacrament of marriage’ and Why should birthday be celebrated as per Hindu lunar calendar?

Refutation of the criticism about ‘the sacrament of marriage’

Many people have criticised Sanatan Vedic Religion (Hindu religion), which has been in existence from the beginning of creation, its religious texts, its Deities, its rituals, and spirituality. Some feel that this criticism is correct, while many inspite of realising that this criticism is spiteful, yet are unable to refute it. While some scholars or students put forth inappropriate ideas out of ignorance.

The Hindus faith becomes shaky because of non refutation of all such inappropriate ideas and criticisms and this causes degradation of Righteousness. To prevent this degradation of Righteousness and to give the Hindus the intellectual strength, the refutation of inappropriate ideas and criticisms about ‘the sacrament of Marriage’ is given below.

1. Anglicised Indians who,  call the ritual of “Kanyadan” (giving away of the bride)  barbaric without understanding the Science


Salankrut Kanyādān’ (adorning ones daughter with jewels and then giving her away in marriage) is dowry ! Is one’s daughter an item that can be given as alms? Kanyādān is barbaric. The barbaric culture of making a woman an object of barter is prevalent even in the present times.


A. There is a pure intention behind the custom of ‘Kanyadan’ : ‘Saint Tukaram Maharaj says, “ salankrut kanyadan is like donating land.’ Was Saint Tukaram Maharaj barbaric? Love marriage is called ‘Gandharva Vivāh’. Gandharva Vivāh does not have the ritual of kanyadan. Kanyadan is not a form of dowry. Kanyadan is not monetory. There is no expectation of monetary benefit (like getting dowry) here. There is no such thought or idea. Salankrut Kanyādān! The gold ornaments and jewellery given to the bride by her father, brothers and relatives is Salankrut Kanyadan. There is not even an iota of concept of money of any monetory thought here. Do not forget that the meaning of the word ‘dan’ is ‘sacrifice’” – Gurudev Kateswamiji (Saptahik Sanatan Chintan, 11.9.2008) 

B. There is a difference between ‘dowry’ and ‘giving away the bride’ and the jewellery is the girls streedhan (woman’s wealth) : The jewellery given to the bride by her father during the wedding is the Streedhan of the bride. She alone has the right to own it. During the ritual of Kanyadan the bride’s father says to the groom, “with the five elements and the Deities as my witness I give to you this good looking, healthy and bejewelled girl, thinking you are like Shri Vishnu, in the desire to attain Brahmalok (the abode of Lord Brahma) and also for the salvation of my ancestors”. And the groom replies, “I accept this girl for the perpetuation of Righteousness and progeny.” From this the difference between dowry and ‘giving away’ becomes clear. Hence there can be no comparison between them.

2. It is said, getting to know one another’s personality by living together before marriage reduces the incidents of Divorce !


‘Getting to know each other’s personality and natures by living together before marriage will reduce divorce !’ – Dr. Pramod Salgaonkar ( Expressed these thoughts at the programme organised at the ‘Braganza Institute’ in Panaji,Goa)


A. Living with another person on realising the incompatibility with one partner is also a kind of divorce : How correct is the idea that divorces can be reduced by living together before marriage and understanding one another’s nature and personalities? Living together and separating on realising ones incompatibility is a kind of divorce. In America, couples live with other partners on realising their incompatibility after living together for many years.  This is how they finish their life living with numerous partners. Can it be said that this method helped in reducing the incidents of divorce?

B. High promiscuity increases psychological instability and life does not remain happy contented and stable. This has made the westerners too realise the importance of family.’ – H.H.Pande Maharaj, Sanatan Ashram, Devad, Panvel.

3. The Communists view about the institution of marriage

3A. They say, marriage constrains free-life (promiscuous life) ! 

Inappropriate thought

‘Lineage, family-code, tradition together form religion. Communists feel that ‘religion is like handcuffing a person’. As marriage brings constrains on man’s free life, that  it does not satisfy his carnal desires, marriage has been deemed disposable by Marx and modern society. They follow the Glass –water theory, ‘Drink water when thirsty. For this it is not necessary to carry a glass’ is the opinion of the communist. They also say that the government shall look after the children.


A. The Hindu society is based on the science of Righteousness and human beings benefit through the institution of marriage : Communist say that ‘government is better equipped to look after and nurture the children than the individual parents’. How long has this thought been prevalent? Communism has dissipated in just 60 -70 years after it took root in society. USSR became fragmented. Our social system is based on science. The purpose of marriage in Hindu society is to create good people, eternally preserving Righteousness and culture, achieving man’s worldly good and also attaining spiritual contentment. We preserve the continuity of lineage by following class code, family code etc. The progeny that is created through our marriage will be there as long as there are rivers, mountains and forests on earth.’ ( Saptahik Sanatan Chintan, 6.11.2008)

B. People in society have a good character through marriage while promiscuity takes them towards degradation : ‘All species including humans are Bhog yonis (species that enjoy desires and carnal pleasures) but only humans have the ability to control his carnal desires and through sādhanā uplift himself. And for this marriage is important. Spiritual up-liftment is the goal of man. And the carnal desire in man is present only for reproduction. Through marriage, life becomes happy as one attains happiness and affection, society becomes righteous, while promiscuity makes man an addict as there is nothing to bind him. Promiscuous life makes man’s life baseless and leads him to ultimate degradation. The ill-effects of promiscuity can now be seen in the Westerners.’ – H.H. Pande Maharaj, Sanatan Ashram, Devad, Panvel.

3B.  Communists who are misguiding the people by calling promiscuity as ‘Kāmsantarpan’ (satisfaction of sexual desire) !

Inappropriate thought

Communist believe, ‘This is not promiscuity, it is Kāmsantarpan (satisfaction of sexual desire)’. Present society gives permission for extra marital relationships for the satisfaction of carnal desires.


A. Immorality gets acceptance through promiscuity : ‘This means that modern society accepts promiscuity! Kāmsantarpan is all rubbish. Promiscuity always is a form of revenge. Promiscuous person always gives various explanations like it is love etc to give credence to their immorality. People with superiority complex have powerful emotions. But emotions cannot give credibility to all things.’  ( Saptahik Sanatan Chintan 6.11.2008)

B. The progeny born out of promiscuity goes on the negative ways and so causes the degradation of society : ‘ Though modern society accords acceptance to extra marital relationship for the satisfaction of carnal desires one should take into account its ill effects as well. The children born in wedlock get good upbringing love and protection. But the progeny of promiscuity is deprived of all this and go on the wrong path and become addicts. This causes the degradation of society as well. This is the reason for the fall in values in the west. Lust cannot give constant love. Promiscuity and free life create diseases like AIDS and its bad effects have to be borne later.  That is, man destroys his life for the sake of satisfying his momentary desires.  What is the use of such temporary happiness?’- H.H. Pande Maharaj, Sanatan Ashram, Devad, Panvel.   

Why should birthday be celebrated as per Hindu lunar calendar?


1. Spiritual meaning

‘Celebrating a birthday is actually expressing gratitude to God for the opportunity to do sadhana (spiritual practice) during the past year and praying for His grace in the coming year.’- Pujya (Mrs.) Anjali Gadgil , 21st January 2005, 4 p.m.
The birthday is the day to assess spiritual progress of the embodied soul: ‘The word ‘vad-divas’, in Marathi language literally means “day of growth”. Here growth indicates spiritual progress. For the soul to progress spiritually, purification of the subtle body and imbibing of the three components also known as ‘trigunas’) from Deities in appropriate proportions is necessary. The spiritual progress of an embodied soul begins at birth. Even if an individual does not undertake actual spiritual practice, due to various spiritual rituals performed on him the sattva component in him increases thus initiating his spiritual progress. Birthday is the day to take stock of the effect of spiritual rituals on his subtle body. From a spiritual perspective, birthday is the day to assess one’s spiritual progress and if there is spiritual progress then it signifies actual growth’.- Ms. Madhura Bhosale, 13th May 2005, 8.04 - 8.22 p.m.
Birthday is the day to enhance one’s ability to imbibe chaitanya: ‘Birthday is the day for enhancement of the ability of an embodied soul to imbibe chaitanya, through the benevolent frequencies gained by invoking Deities. Through this action which raises the sattva component in the atmosphere, the embodied soul achieves stability of the inner mind.’ –  Pujya (Mrs.) Anjali Gadgil, 28th August 2005, 11.40 a.m.

2. History and importance of a birthday celebration

2.1 Birthday of an embodied soul in the ‘Satyayug

‘In the Satyayug the first birthday was celebrated with an evolved soul making a silent resolve and either showering unbroken rice grains (akshata) on the appropriate chakra of the spiritual energy system (kundalini), touching the chakra or initiating the journey (activation) of the kundalini with a mere glance: ‘An individual is born with a spiritual level which is carried forward from the past birth. Accordingly, that particular centre in the spiritual energy system is already in an activated state or a state where the journey of the spiritual energy has halted. In the ‘Satyayug’, ‘Tretayug’ and ‘Dvaparyug’ evolved individuals would be invited to bless the individual whose first birthday was being celebrated or the child would be taken to Him. The evolved soul would perform the ritual of ‘aukshan’ for the child and making a silent resolve would shower unbroken rice grains on various parts of its body thus activating the chakras of the spiritual energy system in that area, till the chakra where the spiritual journey had halted was reached. He would touch the chakra beyond the one where the spiritual energy flow was arrested with unbroken rice grains in the fingers. This would resume the further journey of the spiritual energy. The evolved soul progressed beyond 75% would know merely by looking at the embodied soul upto where his spiritual energy was activated. So, a mere glance at that chakra would restart his spiritual progress.’ – Ms. Madhura Bhosale, 13th May 2005, 8.04 -8.22p.m.

2.2 Birthday of an individual in the Treta and Dvaparyugs

Saints blessing an embodied soul only after assessing his spiritual progress in the previous year: ‘In the ‘Satyayug’ the spiritual level of the average individual was 60%. The embodied soul himself was capable of perceiving the progress of the spiritual energy in his chakras. In the ‘Tretayug’ too some embodied souls had this potential. However, in the ‘Dvaparyug’ most embodied souls lost this ability.
In the ‘Treta’ and ‘Dvaparyugs’ either the individual would visit saints or vice-versa and the saint would bestow His blessings for rapid spiritual progress. After having received blessings the embodied soul would seriously enhance his efforts to increase spiritual progress. On the subsequent birthday when the individual would go for blessings to the saint He would bless him only after assessing if his spiritual progress had occurred in the past year. Since the seeker was fully aware that his progress was a consequence of the saint’s blessing there were less chances of inflation of his ego.’ - Ms. Madhura Bhosale, 8th May 2005

3. Importance of celebrating the birthday as per the Hindu lunar calendar

Even though according to astrology, the date of birth as per the Hindu lunar calendar is inauspicious, it is still advisable to celebrate it on that day as the benefits derived are more than if celebrated on the date of birth according to the Western calendar. - Compiler: We advise that the birthday should be celebrated as per the Hindu lunar calendar.
However astrology says ‘No auspicious action should be performed on the date that one is born because that day is inauspicious. So what stand should be adopted?
A Scholar: The implied meaning of the word ‘inauspicious’ in this context is different. The attributes of the embodied soul born on that particular day match with the frequencies present on that date as per the Hindu lunar calendar (‘tithi’). The sorcerers with their prowess to do black magic, can make a replica of an embodied soul and can cause distress upto 70%. Thus this day is considered ‘inauspicious’ due to the probability of suffering which could be maximum  on that date.
In ‘Kaliyug’ this is an excellent example of the misconceptions harboured by people. On this day the probability of harm is more means that, chances of obstacles in any auspicious task is high so the misconception that was formed was that one cannot perform any holy ritual for the embodied soul on this date of the Hindu lunar calendar.  On the contrary, when celebrating the birthday on this date, through the ritual of ‘aukshan’ and a prayer made unto the family deity, the chaitanya generated helps the embodied soul to combat the distressing energy attacks at various levels. Thus, there is no rule that one must not perform any ritual on this day and the statement from astrology is baseless.’- Pujya (Mrs.) Anjali Gadgil, 4th March 2006, 7.17 p.m.
Blessings and good wishes endow maximum benefit: ‘The frequencies of the date of birth according to the Hindu lunar calendar match the individual maximally.Since the blessings and good wishes of relatives and well-wishers bring maximum benefit to the individual celebrating the birthday as per the Hindu lunar calendar is more beneficial.
One develops the strength to combat obstacles in life: Since the frequencies in the universe on the birthday as per the Hindu lunar calendar match the temperament of the person born on that date, the ‘sattvik’ and chaitanya-enriched rituals done by an individual on that day leave a deep impression on his subconscious mind. As a result, he derives spiritual prowess to combat problems in his future life.’- Pujya (Mrs.) Anjali Gadgil, 21st January 2005, 9.11p.m. and 28th August 2005, 11.40a.m.
Benefits of celebrating a birthday as per the Hindu lunar calendar (‘tithi’) as against the date of birth as per the Western calendar

Celebrating birthday as per
date by Western calendar
Celebrating birthday as per
Hindu lunar calendar
1. Body involved
Physical body only
Physical body 5% and subtle
body 95%
2. Effects on body
Since it is related only to the
physical body the embodied
soul benefits from the ‘sattva
frequencies negligibly. As a
result the covering of the
embodied soul by raja-tama
attributes may not get reduced
Sattva’ component of the
subtle body increases
3. Effects on the spiritual
    energy channels (naadii)
Even after ‘aukshan’ the
sattva’ component in the
subtle body does not grow as
much as required; mostly the
sun channel and at times the
moon channel gets activated.
However this does not benefit
the embodied soul spiritually.
After a ‘tithi’ begins, every
moment an embodied soul
derives ‘sattvik’ frequencies
matching his subtle body,
which are necessary for
purification of the body. As a
result of aukshan the
Sushumna’ channel in the
embodied soul gets activated.
If the spiritual level of the
embodied soul exceeds 60%,
the ‘Sushumna’ channel
remains active throughout the
4. Effects on the attitudes of
    an embodied soul
As the ‘sattva’ component in
an embodied soul does not
increase, his extroverted
attitude does.
As the ‘sattva’ component in
an embodied soul grows, so
does his introverted attitude.
- Ms. Madhura Bhosale, 13th May 2005, 8.04 p.m.

4. Method of birthday celebration

‘There are as many temperaments as there are people and so also the corresponding number of paths of spiritual practice.’ This is one of the basic tenets in Hinduism. Based on this, the methods of performing religious rituals also vary. Though the methods vary, the benefit of the ritual is the same, which is all methods endow the Divine principle. Thus one can decide the method as per convenience. Following are the two methods for celebration of a birthday.
Video: How to celebrate your birthday as per Hindu culture

4.1 Method 1

A. ‘In the first year of life every month and thereafter every year on the date of birth as per the Hindu lunar calendar one should bathe after an oil massage. This should be, followed by application of tilak of kumkum (vermilion)on the forehead.
B. With the resolve ‘आयुरभिवृद्ध्यर्थं वर्ष (मास) वृद्धिकर्मं करिष्ये’ fistful of rice are placed on a wooden seat or platform in seventeen small heaps in the name of the family deity (‘kuladevata’), lunar asterism at birth (‘nakshatra’), parents, Deities Prajapati, Surya, Ganesh, Parshuraam, Raam, Hanumaan , Shasthidevata, Sages Maarkandeya, Vyaas, Krupaachaarya, Ashwathaamaa, Bali, Pralhaad and Bibhishan . The corresponding deity is invoked in each heap and their ritualistic worship with sixteen substances is performed. The Shasthidevata is offered a sacrament (‘naivedya’) of curd and rice which is later fed to a cow or any other animal. The other Deities are offered sugar cubes (‘khadisakhar’) or ‘pedhas’ (a sweetmeat) which is then distributed as holy sacrament.
C. With a prayer, a drink made from a cube of jaggery, a fistful of sesame seeds and half a cup of milk is partaken of by the one celebrating the birthday.
D. Relatives and friends are invited for a meal. Offering of food and other items should be done on this day as much as possible.
E. Avoid receiving money or gifts on this day.

4.2 Method 2

The method of celebration is given below.
A. Bath after an oil massage: On the birthday, after an oil massage, have a bath with clothes on (bath taken in this way is symbolic of forgetting the past, with a prayer to The God for constantly remaining in the present.) When bathing the spiritual emotion should be that ‘The pure and holy water of river Ganga is purifying my body and mind’.
B. Wear new clothes after the bath.
C. Offer obeisance (‘namaskar’) to parents and elders in the family.
D. Perform the ritual of ‘abhishek’ (ablution with liquids like milk and water) or ritualistic worship of the family deity wholeheartedly.
E. Ritual of ‘aukshan’: The ritual of ‘aukshan’ is performed on the one whose birthday is being celebrated. Both, the one performing it and the one on whom the ritual is being performed, should harbour the spiritual emotion that, ‘Through our medium, God Himself is performing this ritual and bestowing His blessings on us.’ At the end of this ritual unbroken rice grains (‘akshataa’) are sprinkled on the head of the one on whom ‘aukshan’ is performed after venerating one’s family deity or deity of worship.
F. A gift is presented to the one celebrating the birthday with the following perspective. As one’s duty a child is given a gift to express appreciation. While gifting an adult,one should not have a sense of doership. When one gifts something without expectation, after a while one forgets about it. The gift given on a birthday should be such. If doership or expectations are harboured in the mind when gifting then a give and take account is created between the two. When the one receiving the gift has the attitude that it is the holy sacrament (prasad) that he is receiving with God’s grace, then a give and take account is not created.
G. Clothes worn when bathing should be given away, without any expectations. This offering should be made to one who is deserving hence it is advisable to give it to a devotee of God or to one serving in the mission of betterment of the nation and righteousness, instead of a beggar.


Om Tat Sat

(My humble salutations to Hindu Jagruti for the collection)


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