Friday, March 6, 2009

Naivedyam-Scrumptious Problem for Gods

Before proceeding with this post ,I would like to pose one question to you..When a puja is performed in your house,which is the most attractive and appealing part to you?
option 1:Religious part of it.
option 2:Naivedyam-food offered to Gods.
option 3:Naam smaran of God or remembering God's Name.
I am not going to ask for ur answer..because I know it ;-) and I am not going to reveal it to anybody ;-) ok? Now continue reading.. .

India,being a land of colourful festivals,different regions celebrate festivals in different ways..But One common thing I noticed in all these festivals or pujas is the Naivedyam part of it..It is a compulsory ingredient in all pujas because we love to offer food to our beloved deity..But I feel that this has created lots of problems for God..;-)..

Our ancestors were real gastronomic experts,they spent all their intelligence in inventing delicious sweets, pickles,papads,appalams,and many more..I doubt whether any other country has researched and developed such a wonderful variety of delicacies;-) ..According to convenience and availability of raw materials they allotted each delicacy for each puja/deity..

If it is Ganesh chaturthi,then it should be Modak(marathi) /Kolukkattai(tamil) ..
Ghee laden shira (modified version of kesari)for Satya narayan puja...
In South, Krishna janmashtami is celebrated with ;-) variety of delicacies... list is very big...

Actually naivedyam is prepared as an offering to God and as a token of our devotion..and we are supposed to sincerely concentrate on God during the pujas..and offer food to him with utmost love ,thank him for his grace....but in reality it never happens ;-)..

I still remember Janmashtami of our child hood days..a variety of delicacies were prepared..mouth watering cheedais,murukkus,appam..mmm ..My elder brother never moved away from puja room...not because of his devotion;-) He used to cordon off that area ,so that he could be the first one to grab the prasad ;-)Every year he used to succeed in his mission leaving my younger brother and myself in despair(!!) ;-) Krishna and his puja were the last preference for us..Temptation to all these wonderful,lipsmacking savouries were so high,poor Krishna had to wait for our attention..;-)

Why childhood days?Even now,during Ganesh Chaturthi,when Modaks are arranged for naivedyam and till all the procedure of naivedyam is over ,our eyes remain glued to the yummy white modaks,waiting for the naivedyam to get transformed into prasad after the water sprinkling procedure;-).. (sorry! for my horrible translation;-)))

Normally an elderly male member of the family sits to perform puja.. He is supposed to do puja sincerely ..observe the procedures like aachaman,sankalpa,.with lots of devotion and fervour... He starts uttering mantra..Om mahaganpatye namah..Om ekadantaya namah..his mind suddenly jumps to the previous year flop vada which was hard like a stone..;-) ,mmm,,Om vakrathunadaya namah.."Ae!Try to make vadas crispier...and little spicier...Do you remember last year's vada..I lost my tooth because of it" This instruction to his wife may give a sudden shock;-) to our lovely ganesha who was just enjoying the mantras praising him..;-) and not only that ...it may serve as a pathetic remainder of last year's naivedyam to him and he may get tensed about this year's new adventurous recipes;-)..

The appetizing aroma emanating from the kitchen when preparing naivedyam...is another major worry for Gods;-) because it causes complete distraction to devotees'(!!!) attention and lead them to a state called devotion deficiency :-D and ultimately Gods end up with utmost attention deficiency;-) ..To top it all,Once the naivedyam procedure is over ,both devotees and the prasad may do a vanishing act from the puja scene...;-) leaving the Gods alone ...
What worries me a lot is if the same situation continues and if Gods lose patience with our inattentiveness and impose a ban on naivedyam for an year or two...it will be very difficult for us to celebrate festivals without modaks and cheedais :(....
Cu in next post...

24 comments:

Prasanna's Pen Speaks ... said...

intersting post padma...but in my house in hyd.. i dont give much important to such kinds of things.. whatever be the festival(except vara lakshmi vrtham)i first give that spl items to my children and my servant... so there is no problem of grabbing..i also eat well and start pooja.
Gods in my house are very healthy... I offer them only fruits... milk,greens, salads, dry fruits,bread etc. I dont want Gods in my pooja suffer from cholestral after eating any cholestral bakshanas..

Raja said...

Padma..very nice post. How can one forget the way Ravi cordoned the area and abagarichify the bakshanams!(grab the sweets)...Of course, I was able to manage my way after he was done, I still sympathize you..as were able to get only the left overs!
Prasanna ..your thoughts are very practical ..you should be honored with the title of "Ammapalayam of 21st century!":)

Padma said...

prasanna !thank u for reading my blog!always dont give diet naivedyam to ur gods ..otherwise oneday they may try to grab cholestrol sweets;-)...u can offer them interesting naivedyams to keep them in good mood;-)

Padma said...

raja! how can i forget those left overs?..:(....prasanna may sue u for conferring her this title :-D

Nandakumar said...

Naivedyam n prasadams r part of our culture.

If u return from tirupathi people ask only abt laddu n not abt darsan.

Similarly in Nanganallur and Pondicherry Anjaneya temples prasadams equivalant to tiffin is given morning to night.People admire abt tht.

U call for an Ayyappan bajan without the usual heavy food.No samis will cum to pooja.

We give nivedyams to God in temples since he is standing all the time and needs energy.

Be proud abt this.No prasadams r given in Mecca or Vatigan.In Hindu culture we treat God as one of our family member n offer all these things.Ellam onnukkula onnu.

Good posting Padma.....

rajendra said...

Padma, The mantras, The pooja scene & the aroma from the kitchen:) is a perfect blend for bringing in happiness in the air to stay for long.

Prasnna, Your Vinayagar will soon have 6 pack abs :( Please.... dont do that He looks handsome the way he his. Feed him well :)

Padma said...

Thank u kumar chittappa! for ur comments..ur comments were hillarious and depicted the true scenario of our temples and prasadam...keep reading my blog and keep commenting...

Padma said...

rajendra!even i am worried like u about prasanna's vinayagar..i think he should be fed with lots of modaks for his lovely plumpy appearance..he looks very sweet if he is round...i ve already advised her to stop diet naivedyam..;-)

Kothai said...

Ammam, Naivedyam is a teaser to visit temples , especially to children. Rudra always looks forward to kalkandu at the temple.
Not just my son but i also look forward to the Pulihara at a nearby temple.
Padma, music pathi ethavathu post podu - i would love to listen to your rendition of marugelara - play your song also in the post.

Ravishankar said...

Yes I did it and I will do it.Bcos for me Lord Krishna ordered me to take the first share, often LION s share.after Lion only Fox will get.

Padma said...

kothai! thank u for reading my blog!s! i ll try to write on music..but for that some analysis has to be done..:( ..so it will take time..but keep reading and write comments to my blog!:)

Padma said...

Ravi! What an attitude...But one change...lion and fox are one and the same in this story...I am an angel;-) in our house..I give Raja every right to defend himself..;-)

Raja said...

Wha rhe wha!...bhesh bhesh rombha nanna irukku intha argument between padma and Ravi..as usual i will sit back and watch it ;)
When it comes to naivedyam, we are ready to fight even in the cyberspace..
Ravi aana one thing.. ennathaan irunthallum you should not elevate yourself to lion status so soon. How about may be Tom or Jerry? Also lions don't fight for cheedai and murukku. They fight for the meaty stuff!

Padma you don't need to do marketing on your blog anymore. Our comments will take care of that :)

Padma said...

Raja u r right..I am jerry and ravi is tom;-)...

Ragav said...

I will appreciate the closeness that you have with each other.By seeing your comments, I cry, but no tears ....anandha kaneer, I appreciate ur blog...bcz apart from naivedyam iam able to capture the emotional bondage that you have. Sorry Raja, i will post comments for your blog soon....

Thanks Padma for excellent work. Your Dad is with me here, watching the blog.. !!!

Ravishankar said...

Padma You have elevated yourself to Jerry and made me Tom from lion status No problem. But What abt Raja he is like Dog role in same cartoon , which always sleeps in side Kennel.

Raja said...

Jerry always teams up with Spike (the Dog in Tom and Jerry) to outwit Tom....

by the way Spike the dog has a smaller company too which is called Tyke

Padma said...

ravi! ur comparison of spike and raja is wrong except one similarity...both of them are always in sleeping position..;-)otherwise spike is the angry ,bully dog which thrashes Tom! which never happened in our case..so ur comparison is wrong;-)

Nikita said...

I agree with you 100% Padma Vahini. And it gets even worse if you are made to fast before the Pooja.
Well interesting cultural difference though, the Buddhist do the Nevediyum part just like us, but they do not eat the Prasad, they throw it away. I wonder as to what impact that might have on the attention level of those devotees.

Padma said...

Thank u nikita for reading my blog:)..Interesting to know the buddhist's custom of throwing away the prasad..poor devotees :(...Imagine what will happen if that custom is followed in India ;-)..

Priyanka said...

Nice article, Padma ! Brought back a whole lot of memories from past. These days while making prasad we try to keep it's 'nutritional' value intact....may be due to the time crunch or health reasons. But nothing can beat the original prasad Aaee/Aajji used to make when we were growing up. You described the whole scenario/environment on the pooja day very precisely in the article. Enjoyed it a lot!

Priyanka said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Padma said...

Thank u sanju!for reading my blog! prasad is a motivating factor for Indian kids to be near the puja scenario;-)..I totally agree with u that the prasad which were prepared by our mothers/grandmothers were really tasty.

anu said...

i was reading reading reading your blog and the successive comments...Finally what happened over a period of time i have forgotten to post my comment on Prasadam,Neivedyam etc..instead of that i was thinking to post comments about Tom ,Jerry and spike (pakka they r ur into ur family)hahaha......