Our saree is a gift of pure Hindu tradition. Saree always has a pallu (Free end of a saree, normally worn over the shoulder and head). Women never let it fall from their head, and if it does fall, it remains draped around the shoulder. Women fasten the pallu to the waist and get involved in their work. How can one describe the greatness of the pallu ? The infant in the cradle longs to be taken in the mother’s pallu. Hence, for an infant, the mother’s pallu is like Parameshwar (Supreme God). When the child grows up, it holds its mother’s pallu and learns to walk. The child uses its mother’s pallu to wipe its mouth. After the daughter’s marriage, the father requests the bridegroom’s parents – ‘Accept my daughter in your pallu’. Hence, the saree and the pallu are a symbol of our Hindu culture.
Western attire such as jeans, T-shirt, chudidar, salwar-kurta, have become an inseparable part of the present day Hindu woman’s lifestyle. Conversely, the use of traditional Bharatiya attire such as nine-yard saree, which infact is the identity of the Hindu culture, has been restricted to womenfolk in the villages. Any attire unknowingly influences the attitude of the wearer. The prevalent rajasik-tamasik attire such as chudidar, jeans, etc. make a woman impulsive and inclined towards worldly pleasures. Conversely, sattvik attire such as the six-yard or a nine-yard saree, make a woman virtuous and Dharma-abiding. Abiding by Dharma increases devotion and bhav (Spiritual emotion) unto God and the individual begins to move on the path of God-realisation. Another disadvantage of wearing rajasik-tamasik attire is an increase in the possibility of the distress due to negative energies for the wearer. In contrast, sattvik attire becomes an effective weapon in the battle against negative energies.
Every subject in Hindu culture is based on the science of Spirituality. In our culture, there is a tradition of wearing a nine-yard saree. In the earlier times, women used to wear nine-yard sarees only; but today, women find it inconvenient wearing it. Therefore, they have started wearing six-yard sarees. Today too, women in villages and some urban women wear nine-yard sarees during various worship rituals. Depending on the different States to which a woman belongs, the pallu of a six-yard saree is draped on the left or the right shoulder. As per the family tradition, some women either cover their head with the pallu or drape it over their shoulder.
In this article we will discuss the importance of saree and the various benefits that one can obtain by wearing it.
1. Necessity of always wearing a saree
for women to conserve and nurture Hindu culture
For women to conserve and nurture Hindu culture, it is necessary to always wear a saree. ‘In Hindu Dharma, extreme importance has been given to why a woman should wear a saree. Today, women do not wear sarees, but wear clothes as per the western culture; as a result, the future generation will have an impression that wearing clothes as per the western culture is the norm. To conserve and nurture Hindu culture, all women should always wear sarees as an expression of their pride in Dharma. If this is not possible, they are requested to at least wear sarees during festivals, celebrations, religious rituals and auspicious days as per the Hindu lunar calendar.
2. Virtues inculcated upon wearing a saree and its benefits
Inculcation of humility
Generation of modesty
Increase in the stability of the mind and concentration of the chitta (Subconscious mind)
Awakening of maternal feelings
Feeling that a saree is the symbol of a Deity
Development of bhav
Increase in self-confidence
Increase in Kshatravrutti (Attitude of a warrior)
Increase in introversion and reduction in extroversion due to awareness of one’s true form
3. The individual imbibes sattvikta (Spiritual purity) and
chaitanya (Divine consciousness) in the environment on wearing a saree
By wearing a saree, the person imbibes Chaitanya and sattvikta in the environment; these are retained in a circular form, and the person benefits from these for a longer duration. Though the sarees made from synthetic yarn are comfortable to wear, they have less ability to absorb sattvikta and Chaitanya. Conversely, sarees made from natural fibres, such as cotton and silk yarns, have a greater ability to absorb sattvikta and Chaitanya. Thus, wearing these sarees results in imbibing greater proportion of spiritual benefits.
4. Benefits obtained by Individual upon
wearing a sattvik attire such as the saree
4 A. Due to sattvik attire such as the saree, mutual bonds between individuals are not limited to the psychological and intellectual levels, but they get a spiritual foundation and the bonds are created at the spiritual level.
4 B. When we look at a person wearing a sattvik attire, it creates a positive effect on the various chakras (Spiritual energy centres in the subtle body) of our body, and as a result, we experience pleasant sensations. This results in spiritual healing and thus reduces the manifestation of the mantrik.
4 C. Viewing a sattvik scene affects us spiritually and influences our mind and intellect. When we look at an individual wearing sattvik clothing such as a saree, dhoti etc., waves of Shakti ( Divine Energy), Anand (Bliss) and Shanti (Peace) emitting from these are registered in the mind, and they leave a positive impression on the mind.
5. Receiving sattvikta and experiencing reduction
in distress due to negative energies upon wearing a saree
Wearing a saree results in spiritual healing; thus, reducing the distressing energy covering around the body and the distress caused by negative energies.
Those facing distress due to negative energies have negative thoughts about wearing a saree. Since the saree is sattvik, when a woman who has distress due to negative energies wears it, the negative energies in her body are distressed because of its sattvikta. Hence, the negative energies induce negative thoughts in such a woman’s mind about wearing a saree, and manage to somehow make them feel like never wanting to wear a saree.
(Women who have negative energy distress get negative thoughts about the saree and hence, refrain from wearing a saree and wear non-sattvik clothes instead; as a result, they experience increase in their distress due to negative energies. Thus, even though the women experience difficulties, they should attempt wearing a saree with the firm conviction that wearing a saree will reduce their distress; this will certainly help reduce their distress.)
6. Understand the importance of saree
and wear it even though it may take longer to wear
Due to lack of practice [of wearing a saree], it may be initially difficult to work, but after a few days of practice one does not find it difficult. If this were not to be so, no woman would have ever worn a saree. In the earlier times, women would wear nine-yard sarees. Modern women do not like to wear a nine-yard saree. It is a matter of practice. One should remember that the above information has revealed immeasurable spiritual benefits of wearing a saree. Therefore, till the habit of wearing a saree develops, why should one worry if there are some difficulties initially ?
Reference : Sanatan Sanstha’s Holy text ‘Spiritually beneficial clothes for women’