Since childhood, I have a deep affection for Hindi literature, as my Mother had an unwavering relationship with literature. I have grown up seeing her read and now write. She had collected a large number of gems of literature. So I had read many big gems like Dinkar, Maithilisharan Gupta, Renu in my childhood.
And the, I was introduced to the works of Maitri Pushpa. Over the years, I came across her ideology as well. I may not compare to her grandeur, but, because Kabira once said that the world is full of diversity and different ideologies, I choose to keep my opinion in front of you.
Sindoor, or the vermilion is not an indication of the fetters of femininity; it is a sign of their saintliness. The redness of vermilion signifies dedication, selflessness and unwavering faith in the love of her and her spouse. Yes, it is the opinion of an unmarried working girl who always saw her mother fasting on Teej and Karvachauth for her husband’s wellbeing. Always saw her applying Sindoor from her Sinhaura , a little Sindoor pot which the bride’s family gifts to the bride on her wedding. The groom takes vermilion from the same pot to adorn her with Sindoor duing the wedding rituals.
The pint of her pompous sinhora in vermilion and forehead always glowed as long as my father was alive and it did not diminish her worth. In every struggle of my father, she became a sangini, a true partner, and played her role perfectly at home and at the office.
Even today she is the most beautiful and extremely strong woman that I have seen. The vermilion is not fashion. It is a tradition continuing for over 5000 years old in which human civilization is reflected.
Signs of sindoor were found in the relics of Mohenjodaro and Harappa. When the touted pseudo-Feminism was a far cry, and the construction of a powerful society was taking tangible form, the sindoor was glowing. In the Vedic Sanatani religion which has been the crusaders of many cultures, the tradition of sinduradan is considered the blessings of Mother Sati, who sacrificed herself for the honor of her husband. Perhaps feminists do not understand the Vedic significance.
Just to let you know that its scientific significance is also not less either. Mercury, the only metal found in liquid form, is present in vermillion. Applying vermilion provides a cooling affect and the brain remains relaxed.
Vermilion is applied after marriage because it works with blood circulation as well as strengthens sexual abilities. Mercury, a sign of Mars, prevents bad effects also. Moreover, the importance of vermilion has also been stated in physiology.
Due to excess of mercury-like metal in sindoor, there is no wrinkling on the face. The vermilion is worn in the mid-partition of hair just above the marm called Brahmarandhra and Adhmi. This is known to be the command cycle or Ajna Chakra. The vermilion protects the marm from external bad influences.
The forehead is also the centre of thoughts power between the two eyebrows, which the yogis call the center of commandment or Ajna chakra. The tilak of sandalwood or of vermilion help in the development of vision and command. Therefore, in Hinduism, tilak is performed on the forehead while performing any auspicious ceremonies. The sages started the tradition of tilak with the aim of increasing the mental stability of women living in Bhava Pradhan, Shraddha-Pradhan Kendras.
Most of the women live in Swadhisthan and Manipur centre. There is an excess of fear, emotion and imagination in these centres. Women should not be swept away in these feelings; their Shivnetra, centre of thought should be developed. And for this very purpose, sages have arranged for women to do tilak continuously so that they can benefit from it.
Now let’s talk of ideological importance.
You say “those women who do not apply vermilion created history”.
Do you not know about Gargi, Shandily, Anasuya, and many other great women who were followers of the Sanatan Dharm and adorned their forehead with Sindoor?
Do you not know Rani Padmavati who accepted Jauhar for the honor of her Sindoor or do you not remember Sushma Swaraj?
Savant women have always known and recognized the importance of vermilion. Perhaps pink feminists have not.
Applying vermilion or not at the workplace does not matter but your hard work, perseverance, and performance do. The sindoor has never been a barrier in anyone’s career growth. Also, extreme violence against women is also prevalent in communities where women are not “forced” to apply Sindoor. At times, they are forced to give in to the sexual desires of fathers-in-law, brothers-in-law, and other close relatives. The pseudo-feminists will not have the gall to address these impositions. They play safe with the red of the harmless vermilion.
Sindoor isn’t an imposed practice; it is voluntary love and respect of women for her significant other. Who is one feminist to dictate her ideology on another woman? Who is she to confuse and corrupt younger minds?
The women who have suffered pain and dejection in relationships may not believe in the institutions of marriage. They may want a carefree life without responsibilities They may want to live miles away from the sindoor. More power to them.
But, the one who adorns herself with sindoor is not a bandhini either. She is the ginni, the kartri, the woman in charge of a home, a family, a woman who enjoys the total authority of her household and makes decisions for their happiness.
This vermilion costs some 5 or 10 ₹. It’s available for such an affordable price, perhaps, because it is beyond the grasp of regular humans to evaluate its worth. I hope that this aspect of femininity too will be accepted by you beyond your ideology.
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