Mahanamnivrat, Mahavrat, The Upanishadvrat, Godanvrat (Keshantsanskar) Sanskar

Mahanamnivrat – Eleventh Sanskar

After completion of the thread ceremony at the age of eight and studying in the home of his Guru for five years, he acquires the right to recite the Aranyaks.

A ritual that is performed so that he acquires this right earlier is called ‘Mahanamnivrat’, ‘Mahavrat’ and ‘Upanishadvrat’.

After completion of three years study at the rate of one for each vrat, he is supposed to gift a cow and an ox to his Guru as dakshina for teaching of the Aranyaks. The ritual of offering a cow is called ‘Godanvrat’. This sanskar is performed while studying the first Aranyak.

 

Mahavrat – Twelfth Sanskar

This sanskar is performed when studying the Aranyaks.

 

The Upanishadvrat – Thirteenth Sanskar

This sanskar is performed when studying the Aranyaks.

‘Recitation & memorisation of Holy texts like the Upanishads and Vedas is done in the home of the Guru. In this vrat,the Vedas are recited laying emphasis on grammar, origin of words and pronunciation’.

– H.H. Pande Maharaj, Sanatan Ashram, Devad, Panvel, Maharashtra.

 

Godanvrat (Keshantsanskar) – Fourteenth Sanskar

‘In this sanskar, first the moustache and the beard of the celibate are shaved. This sanskar is performed at the age of sixteen years. It also signifies that he is now becoming a youth. Since at that age the moustache and the beard start appearing and his masculinity starts manifesting, this sanskar is a reminder to him to keep control over the wrong tendencies which appear at that age, also of the vow of celibacy that he has taken.

The Gurus would expect him to behave with intense self-control at least for the next year. It was also believed that if he was able to comply thus for a year then later in his youth, he would not commit mistakes.’

In this ritual, hair in the shape of a cow’s hoof are retained on his head, in the area of the Brahmarandhra. In this ritual, priests are gifted a cow (known as godan). The Godan sanskar is performed on the Brahmaṇ at 16 years, on the Kshatriya at 22 years and on the Vaishya at 24 years.

The day after godan, the Guru commands the celibate to follow the ‘Godanvrat’. For a year thereafter, the celibate grows his hair, beard and moustache and observes celibacy.’ These four vrat are referred to as ‘Chaturveda vrat’. The teacher gets these vrats performed from the boy in the stage of celibacy.

 Reference : Sanatan’s Holy text series on ‘Abiding by Dharma’ : Vol. 1 Sixteen Sanskars

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