Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Why do we worship ‘Tulsi’ plant?

I am happy to write this third article in continuation of the series ‘The Why of Indian Tradition’. Today the topic is ‘Tulsi’ plant. In India, Hindu religion has bestowed ‘Tulsi’, with the status of mother. Traditional Hindu families consider it auspicious to plant Tulsi in their homes. They worship it and take every care of it. Also known as ‘Sacred or Holy Basil’, Tulsi, has been recognized as a religious and spiritual devout in many parts of the world.

We, Indians have a special respect for Tulsi. We see this everyday in our family when our mother or grandmother worship Tulsi and offer water to it. This tradition is continuing since ages, we even do not know since when. However, one point is very clear, our brilliant Rishis (sages) knew the benefits of Tulsi and that is why they personified it as a Goddess and gave a clear message to the entire community that it needs to be taken care of by the people, literate or illiterate. Today, we do not do any harm to Tulsi and try to protect it because it is like Sanjeevani for the mankind.

Documented as something being used in many traditional ceremonies, Tulsi plant is thought to open the heart and mind and bestow love, compassion, faith and devotion. With such belief it has been widely used in religious rituals and ceremonies throughout the continents.

Today, inspite of the fact that the mankind has scaled the heights in medicine, the entire medical fraternity world over acknowledges the traditional and herbal characteristics of Tulsi. The properties of Tulsi, which the world has acknowledged today was known to Indians since ages. Tulsi has great medicinal properties. It is an awesome antibiotic and a healthy tea as well. Taking Tulsi everyday as tea or otherwise increases immunity and help the drinker prevent diseases, stabilize his or her health condition, balance his or her body system and most important of all, prolong his or her life. Keeping Tulsi plant at home prevents insects and mosquitoes from entering the house. It is said that snakes do not dare to go near the Tulsi. This was reason, in ancient times, people would grow lots of Tulsi near their house. Tulsi also produces great quantity of oxygen which is again most vital for the survival of mankind.

Today more and more people from different walks of life have included Tulsi tea drinking in their daily routines- giving them a more relaxed and refreshed feeling. This wonder plant has been highly classified as something that is indeed organic, botanical, naturally safe, healthy, flavorful, aromatic, relaxing and refreshing.

The properties of Tulsi, which the world has recognized after so much of scientific testing and research was known to us (Indians) for thousands of years. Our Rishis were indeed great—isn’t it?

                                                                                               
                                                                                                 -Shitanshu Srivastava

3 comments:

  1. Yeah , its been discovered recently that "TULASI" can reduce impact of "Floride" in water .
    SO Andhrapradesh Govt decided to distribute Tulasi plant to each ant every family in Floride effected areas in State.

    ReplyDelete
  2. An interesting article. I am not an expert but to add a few cent of my practical &

    logical analysis. I always wondered, why we have a Tulsi plant in our house and why

    are some of the rituals organised around the same.

    The important realisation is that Tulsi has immense medicinal value. There are

    numerous sites that state the same. Even if half of the benefits stated are true,

    it makes complete sense to have the plant in each and every house

    What I found interesting is the thought process of rituals/customs around the Tulsi

    plant

    1. It is said that each house should have a Tulsi plant

    Why? Tulsi plant has medicinal benefits, if planted, you get an anti-oxidant,

    adaptogen, diuretic, detoxifier, anti carcinogenic, pain reliever, decongestant &

    expectorant in your house. Some of the above properties help with purifying your

    body, beating stress, beating common cold, beating pain amongst other things.

    Information on this is widely available on the internet. All these benefits at no

    cost. Wow can't beat that right


    2. It is expected that the Tulsi plant be placed in front of the house, typically

    in the compound of the house.

    Why? Because out of sight is out of mind. To nurture(water) the plant regularly,

    keep it in your line of sight where you will see day in day out. Interesting right!


    3. It is expected that we pray to the Tulsi plant every day as she is a Hindu

    goddess

    Why? Because, if line of sight above, does not work, we give the plant the status

    of a god and ensure that you pray to it daily, so that you will nurture (water) the

    plant regularly. Thoughtful...

    4. We have a annual Tulsi vivah(marriage), wherein Tulsi goddess is married to

    Krishna

    Why? Because, in case you have not nurtured the plant through the year due to

    absence or not praying to it daily, the plant is obviously going to die. Tulsi

    vivah is an opportunity to re-plant the tree in the house and to re-emphasize its

    significance. Wow...

    5. It is said that Tulsi plant is a Hindu goddess

    Why? Faith is the only way one can convince different types of people (rich-poor,

    educated-uneducated) to comply to something without having to explain in detail &

    justify the reasons for doing so. Doing a larger good through faith. Interesting

    right...

    So my view is, whoever devised the rituals/customs around the Tulsi plant must have

    be a very smart person who understood science, religion, human psychology & had the

    authority to get the rituals/customs implemented. Great dude

    I think people need to invest time in finding out the reasons for some of the

    customs/rituals that we have in the Indian religions. There may be lot to learn in

    there.

    Thanks & Regards

    ReplyDelete
  3. Tulsi is a very sacred plant worshiped in India. the citizens almost daily in the morning, worship the plant and start their day to day activities.And in your website and your post have nice information about the #Holy-Basil-Tulsi. Holy Basil leaf extract functions as an adaptogen, enhancing the body’s natural response to physical and emotional stress. It does this by regulating the body’s production of the stress hormone, cortisol. By helping the body to cope with stress, Holy Basil also supports the immune system.

    ReplyDelete