Saturday, 13 April 2013

Day 393- Sadhabhishekam

In a Hindu's book of life, there are some chapters which are of special significance. One of them is when he  or she turns 80. On crossing the 80th, one celebrates the rare feat of having witnessed 1000 moons since birth; of having completed all familial duties and fulfilled one's commitments on earth. 

Sadhabhishevam is the celebration of such an occasion. On this day, the octogenarian also renews his or her wedding vows and the grand-olds undergo a ceremony akin to a celestial honouring of a long and enduring love. 

I was very fortunate to have attended the Sadhabishekam of a dear friend's father 3 Sundays ago. Organised and put together lovingly by his children, I  witnessed Uncle Vasu and Auntie Leela's renewal of  their vows at the Sri Shiva Temple.

The decorated chamber was a glorification of colours. Everyone came in their most resplendence, especially the women in their bright and gorgeous saris.

Saris in all shades and which I have always loved. In fact, I favour it over my own traditional dress, the cheongsam. 

I too wore an Indian dress but mine was a shawal kamis, worn mainly by the Northern Indians. Some of you might have read in a post 3 years back about this raging red dress I bought and which I have never worn. The Sadhabhishekam was my chance to finally take it out of its bag. 

The ceremony comprised largely of the pooja/prayers conducted with the priest. Indian musicians accompanied much of what went on. 

After the prayers, the grand-olds then went and sat at the courtyard. Friends and family armed with their pots of blessed water took turns to pour the water over the couple symbolising the showering of blessings by them on the couple. 

We in turn, took our blessings from the grand-olds after that. This is said to be so auspicious that even strangers who chance upon such a ceremony will ask to receive such a blessing. 

And here they are once again, the bashful bride with her beau. 

And this was the couple as I had envisaged the day before the ceremony. How fortuitous it was that I got the colour of the turban right. 

I made the couple this book box vignette to commemorate what I regard as a truly meaningful and romantic occasion. The 1st picture of this post was the cover of this book. 

It was the first handmade gift by me to a non dollhouse friend and I really hope it brought some smiles.

To Uncle Vasu and Auntie Leela
May you both live to see the 100th year!


The Old Maid said...

What a fabulous ceremony it must have been! The photos are fantastic and I have no doubt you were as happy as the Couple seeing it on your own eyes!
You made a grea gift dear Sam, I am sure it brought a lot of joy there.:)

As for your colourful reminded me about my blue one I bought on Santorini island more than....10 years ago...never worn it yet... But it is great help when I am loosing weight to check if it still fits me, LOL!
Hugs and kisses!!!

Kate said...

What a beautiful vignette! I love the brilliant colors. My son is marrying an Indian young woman next months and I am looking forward to the four days of celebration, wearing my first sari, (the food!)and all the color and symbolism of your wonderful culture. You've captured that joyous spirit of a long marriage in your vignette! I hope my son is blessed with that many years with his beloved!

Lucille said...

Oh my goodness, Sans! What beautiful, uplifting colours. You look gorgeous in your dress. I just cannot ever say enough about your talent. The gift you gave them is just so very precious, it almost brought tears to my eyes. What a lovely custom that is of celebrating one's 80th birthday. Thank you so much for showing and telling all this. Have a lovely day. Until next time!

BiWuBär said...

What a wonderful tradition - and what a fantastic way to cherish the older ones. In our society the older people often are put aside, seldom visited by their relatives and celebrating an 80th birthday only means celebrating in a restaurant, crafting a wreath with a golden 80 in it bought in a store and (woohoo!) congratulations by the local mayor. Blarg!!! This way is many, many, many times better! What a lovely couple they were - and what a nice opportunity for you to take that beautiful dress out of its bag.

The present you've made is so lovely and personal, I'm convinced they will treasure it for always, at least until their 100th, then you will have to make them another one.

I've made the experience that many people cherish handcrafted presents, at least the ones who understand that you're also giving your time, your effort and your love away with such a gift. One of my Uncles once surprised me by saying whenever there's a big party with lots of presents and cards given away he could always tell which one was from me and my family because of the handcrafted card - wow, I'd never expected him to notice stuff like this... *grin*


Ilona said...

Hi Susan, what a respectful tradition for the older people, thank you for sharing and reminding us. Here in The Netherlands it is nearly the same as in Germany, Birgit wrote about it. In some regions, like the one I live in, there is still respect for the elderly people.
Your pictures of this special ceremony are really gorgeous. I love to see your beautiful colored dress like all other colorful clothes of the other guests. It must have been an honor and an impressive event for you to participate, enjoy the memories you have of it.
Your gift was gorgeous, I think it will make a lot of people smile, no, I am sure of it.
Warm hugs, Ilona

Janice said...

Very interesting. Thank you for sharing such a colourful and meaningful event. I really enjoyed reading about it.

Dark Squirrel Victoria said...

Oh Wow!!! I so enjoyed the ceremony. I look so beautiful :)


Plushpussycat said...

The colors are gorgeous and the tradition so meaningful. Thanks for showing us all such a great time--I almost feel like I was there myself. Your diorama is so fun--I'm sure it brought smiles of gratitude, Sans! xo Jennifer

Sans! said...

Ewalina, I remember we spoke of that blue dress from Santorini. Please! Wear it this summer, will you? :):)

You know, I was really thrilled when I received the invitation and thought this renewal of vows at 80 one of the most romantic practices ever. They renew their vows twice, once at 60 when the man was to have passed on all his businesses etc to his children and spend the next 10 years training them and then again at 80.

I was shopping for a gift when I thought how silly, I should make them one :). I found the book only two days before :)

Sans! said...

Hi Kate!!! I am just as thrilled to have met you. Would you believe I have yet to attend my 1st Hindu wedding ceremony? The renewal is similar but not the same, if you know what I mean :). I have been pestering a Hindu friend of mine to get married so I can finally go shopping for a sari :).

I am sure your son's wedding will be a beautiful one. :) You will have loads of fun I am sure. Tons of flowers and colours, colours, colours :). I hope you have bought your bangles and henna (MUST!)and matching shoes :). Will there be another ceremony in India?

I saw that you have 2 blogs. Let me know when you start which blog is about mini and I will definitely follow it!

rosanna said...

80 years and still wishing to renew their vows: that's love above all difficulties and problems in life.
I recognized someone else rather than you.Please, tell Winny that she is stunning!
thank you for sharing your day, it must have been a great experience

Fabiola said...

This ceremony is fantastic. I like the pictures, the colors and the atmosphere.
Thanks for sharing.
Bye, Faby

Ascension said...

Hola Susan
Voy corriendo antes que me quiten el ordenador jejeje
Lo primero....estas guapisima.
Me encanta coomo narras las historias y las preciosas fotografias llenas de color y que te llevan a esos precioso lugares que tu recorres.
me tengo que irrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr jejeje
besitos ascension

Eva said...

Una bonita ceremonia llena de respeto y alegría. Agradecida por compartir la experiencia. Un saludo, Eva

Daydreamer said...

One Thousand Moons! What an Amazing Thing! And what a Wonderful celebration to be able to share!!! We do not have anything like that over here.... but we should!!! And on top of it all a reason to wear that fantastic dress... and immerse yourself in the culture of India with loved ones! No wonder you are smiling so wide!!! And the Vignette is Awesome!!! I am sure they will Treasure it for all the rest of their Many Moons!!!
Thank you, Dear Sans! for sharing this special day!

Ana Anselmo said...

So beautiful tradition!!!! I loved everything, I am always learning something from your blog, thanks for sharing!!!!

PS: my last post im my blog was abouth the things I am going to have in the 3th Miniature and Dollhouse fair, next week-end.

Kikka said...

Wonderful ceremony.. 80 years together, that is something, and still in Love,wow!
Love the colors and the story. Thank you Sans :)

Drora's minimundo said...

A wonderful tradition and a great way to celebrate the 1000 moons. The colors are gorgeous and your photos the same. I love the gift you made for the dear couple. I am sure it will be cherished.
Also I love the saris, so beautiful
and delicate.
Thanks for sharing.
Hugs, Drora

Sans! said...

Birgit and Ilona, this renewal of vow practices by the Hindus are in fact not as common here as well. Many families don't celebrate birthdays to such a grand scale. I think there were at least 100+ people at this party. And it can become very expensive.

I remember how when I brought my parents to Taiwan, the natives commented about how rare it was that children bring their aged parents on tour with them. In Taiwan, it was because it was difficult to have their holidays at work coincide. In Singapore, the practice is quite common because grandparents often take care of the grandchildren while their children work. This foster closer relationships between the 3 generations.

It is also common in India when children continue to live with their parents even after marriage.

Even then, we are having increasing problems with aged people especially those on their own being neglected by society. It is heart wrenching for many of us to still see these old folks collecting old paper boxes on the streets because this is the only means of living they can find.

That's why I was so touched by this ceremony.

Sans! said...

Ro, poor Winni is working very hard now and even though she barely slept, yes, she still look fabulous. :) I will let her know what you said. that will really cheer her up loads :)

Sans! said...

Ascensión :) :), gracias, cariño cariño, para correr este comentario, incluso cuando usted no está en su propio equipo!

Todavía no he leído su correo electrónico de respuesta, porque no podía encontrarlo :) :). Lo haré esta noche!

Mientras tanto, los abrazos y besos :) :)

Sans! said...

Lucille, my friend Winni told me she was moved too when she saw the box. I am so happy that you felt the same way. It is such a simple box but I did put it together thinking about all the special things that made up a lifetime worth of enduring love. I wish for those who experience this kind of love to appreciate what they have for they are blessed above all else.

Sans! said...

Drora, I think the sari has got to be the sexiest traditional dress ever! And it is getting sexier :). Wedding saris are very very expensive due to the intricate embroidery work. They cost 1000s of dollars and a typical wedding celebration (3-7 days) require a bride to have at least 5-10 sets of saris for change costing their parents tens of thousands of dollars! :):)

In a Chinese marriage ceremony here, a bride changes her clothes up till 4 times sometimes in 1 evening! :):):)

Sans! said...

Janice, Vic, Jennifer, Faby and Eva, I am lucky to be invited . So glad I could share it here.

Sans! said...

Ana, your work is really breath-taking. I am going to the fair one of these days and look at your work up close and personal!

Sans! said...

Kikka, thought you will leave me a love poem :)

Sans! said...

Bets, I agree with you that we all should not take love for granted. And always we must celebrate it. Be it the 80th birthday, a renewal of vows or parenthood. Need not be a big celebration but one that is shared by loved ones.

I knew another couple, man in his 60s and the woman, 50s who met late in life. They just celebrated their union with a party for their friends, not for marriage but just to announce their union. The lady is widowed and the man divorced and both have grown up children so they both don't want a legal marriage.

I think that party to announce their union is just as special, maybe even more so.

Love is truly a many splendoured thing!

Liduina said...

Thank you so much for leaving such kind comments on my blog today. They really make me blush :-)
I love visiting you blog too; it's so unique in Blogland with its exotic charm and brilliant colours. This post is another beautiful example of it. Hope to see more of you soon! Hugs, liduina.

Blog Widget by LinkWithin