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What are some DOs and Don’ts after a death in a Hindu family?

What are some DOs and Don’ts after a death in a Hindu family?
What are some DOs and Don’ts after a death in a Hindu family?


09 November, 2022

What are some DOs and Don’ts after a death in a Hindu family?

Reading Time: 4 minutes

We all address the end-of-life journey as death. This difficult phase comes with unbearable pain and grief. But taking part in the death rituals with family members and friends lessens the pain a little bit. When a family is performing last rites for honoring the departed soul, it must take care of some DOs and Don’ts according to the belief of that particular religion, caste and creed.

Here are some informative points that will make you aware of the right doings and wrong doings after death in the  Hindu religion.

What you should do at the various stages during the demise of a person?

For convenience and a better understanding of the viewers, the entire information is depicted in a stepwise manner.

At the time of demise –

If any person senses that his or her death is near, he/ she should be laid down on earth. A family member should place “Tulsi leaves” and sacred water or “Gangajal” in the mouth. It is believed that pouring water at the time of death helps the soul in attaining satisfaction and in getting rid of thirst. A person can also do these actions after the demise. Some people also put a particle of gold in the mouth of a deceased person. The deceased body’s head should face south direction and the legs must be north-facing.

At the time of funeral preparation-

After the demise, the funeral is the first ceremony that is performed by the family members. During the funeral, one must keep the following things in mind.

  1. The deceased body should be covered with a white cloth.
  2. The body should be placed inside a freezer box for safety.
  3. The family members can keep the dead body for 24 hours only to display it for visitors.
  4. The family members of a deceased person can embellish it with flowers and they can lighten some scented sticks near the head of the departed one.

At the cremation ceremony-

After keeping the deceased body for a limited time at the home, the close ones prepare it for the cremation ceremony. According to Hinduism, one must follow the below-mentioned points at the cremation ground.

  1. The elder person of the family performs the cremation ceremony.
  2. Usually, the cremation places are near the river banks. Hence the elder person washes the body and wraps it with a clean white cloth. If a deceased person is married and female, it must be embellished with red clothes.
  3. The person who is taking part in the cremation ritual should shave his head and mustache and beard. Other family members should also do the same activity.
  4. The prepared body is placed on a wooden pyre and the elder person moves around the body in an anti-clockwise direction with a clay pot filled with water.
  5. After completing three rounds, the chief mourner drops the clay pot on the ground and set fire to the pyre.

The family members wait until the deceased body gets completely turned into ashes. After three days, the remains can be collected and flown into the sacred water or scattered over the ground.

What you should not do after the demise of a family member in the Hindu religion?

There are several castes, creeds, sects and subsects in the Hindu religion and each one has a different and unique method of offering reverence to the departed person. But some common rules are followed in various sects of Hinduism like,

  1. After the demise of a beloved family member, the other persons of the family do not cook food for the entire day. They can take it from their neighbors and friends.
  2. The entire family should not wear new clothes for 13 days after the demise of the person. Any other kind of bodily beautification is also prohibited for 13 days.
  3. During this time period, the family should not offer puja or worship its ideals. They should not take part in any religious activity as well. The reason behind it is the family members are considered impure for these 13 days.
  4. After completing the cremation ritual, the family members should not look back toward the remains or ashes. It is believed that the departed soul tries to return with them due to emotional bonding.
  5. During these 13 days, all the family members feed themselves with simple food.
  6. At the funeral, visitors and family members should avoid wearing black. They can wear plain white clothes.
  7. Females should not participate in the cremation ceremony of the deceased person.
  8. During the funeral and cremation ceremony, nobody is allowed to consume food and drink like the other religion’s customs.
  9. After cremation one should not collect the ashes immediately. The family members collect them in an urn after two or three days. These remains should not be brought to the home, instead, these must be flown in the holy water of a river or scattered over the plain ground.

How does Last Journey assist mourning people along with following the guidelines related to the Dos and Don’ts?

Last Journey funeral organization is popularly known for its method of organizing funerals and other final rituals. Our professionally skilled team performs their duties adhering to the faiths and beliefs of the deceased’s family. When a family hires our team for taking help in offering dignified death rituals to the departed soul, we provide them with an experienced priest/pujari/pandit Ji who enlightens the entire family with the appropriate way of performing last rites.

It is quite obvious to forget the actual customs and rituals when you have lost your loved one. In this time of confusion, a knowledgeable and well-read person (Pandit Ji) guides you and tells you what you should do at which place and when.

Our organization never imposes a certain set of rules on any mourning family. We empathetically participate in the grief of mourners and follow their instructions. We consider that honouring their customs and beliefs is the only way to calm their aching hearts.

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