is the first god represented in the Hindu Religion. He is considered
as the creator of the universe and all living beings.
is considered having four heads with white beard and four arms. His
hands hold a kamandal, a rosary, a sacrificial ladle and the Vedas.
Brahma is shown on a lotus. It is believed that the four Vedas have
originated from his head and the four castes are originated from him.
The Brahmin's from his head, the Kshatriyas from his arms, the Vaishyas
from his thighs, and the Shudras from his feet.
In the beginning Brahma created the four Kumars : Sanaka, Sananda, Sanatana
and Sanat Kumar.
Brahma asked his four sons to generate progeny but the Kumars declined
and hence, Brahma created his 10 mind born sons.
Brahma's mind born sons are the seers Mareeci, Atri, Angiras, Pulastya,
Pulah, Kratu, Pracetas known as Daksh, Vashisht, Bhrgu and Naarad.
From Brahma's body came his nine sons Daksa, Dharma, Kama, Anger, Greed,
Delusion (Maya), Lust, Joy, Death and Bharat and one daughter called
It is also said that Agni is the first son of Brahma. Agni was married
to Swaha and has three sons Pavak, Pavaman and Suchi. Swadha was his
second wife. Both his wives are invoked while pouring oblations in the
fire or making offerings in Yagna and other religious rituals.
Brahma created 10 Prajapatis, who are believed to be the fathers of
the human race. Their names, according to the Manusmriti are Marichi,
Atri, Angiras, Pulastya, Pulah, Kratu, Vasishth, Daksh, Bhrigu, and
Narad. These Prajapatis are believed to be born from the mind of Brahma.
He is also believed to have created the Saptarishi or seven great sages
to help him create the universe.
place where Brahma lives is known as Brahmalok. His vehicle is a white
swan. The swan has a tendency to seperate milk from water. Therefore
this bird is also a symbol of separating good from evil. Unlike other
deities Brahma does not have a weapon.
His wife is Sarasvati the goddess of wisdom, the mother of the Four
Vedas and the inventor of the Devanagari script.
are the mind born sons of Brahma. Brahmins were created by Brahma so
that they instruct mankind. This was why they were considered the highest
of the four castes as they had the most to do with intellect.
Brahmins conducted the daily rites like the purification ceremony’s
and taught the Vedas. Their life was divided into four stages (Brahmacharya
- studying, Grihasth - married man, Vanaprasth - performing penance
in a forest and Sanyas - renouncing worldly attachments). Brahmins had
to maintain a strict code of conduct and ideal behavior. Since they
were the teachers, preachers and priests they had to be proficient in
sacred knowledge through the Vedas.
we in Gujarat call "Janoi" is derived from the Sanskrit words
"Upnayan" or "Yagnopavit".
is a joint word made of two words Yagna and Upvitam. Yagna means a sacrificial
ceremony and Upvitam means sacred thread.
is also a joint word made from Upa and Nayan. Upnayan means first step
towards the guidance to knowledge.
is symbol performing his threefold duties to the household, the devtas
and to his pitrus. Hence, the three stand with the divine knot wearing
over the left shoulder as a necessary ritual tool when performing these
his marriage the householder gets 3 more strands on behalf of his wife.
Brahmin is born once from the womb of his mother and again during the
Upanayanam when he learns the Gayatri Mantra. Hence, Brahmins are referred
to as Dwija meaning twice born.
a child goes through Upanayana ceremony he gets ready to start getting
knowledge at the hands of a Guru.
is one thread folded three times and tied together each consisting of
three strands. These threads represent
Gayatri (Goddess of mind)
Saraswati (Goddess of word) and
Savitri (Goddess of deed)
three folds denote that one who wears the sacred thread should be pure
in his thought, word and deed. The knot in the middle represents the
Brahman the pure form of energy. The three threads again represent the
manifestation of Brahman as Srishti, Sthithi and Vinasa.
Wearing of the Yajnopavit in three forms :
is Upavitam where the Yajnopavit is worn over the left shoulder and
under the right arm. This is for Gods. It is also called savya.
Second is Nivitam where the Yajnopavit is worn around the neck and over
the chest or worn on left shoulder and some part of it is wrapped around
the left ear. It is to be used during answering the calls of nature
(going to toilet), etc.
Third is Prachinavitam where the Yajnopavit is worn above the right
shoulder and under the left arm. This is used by Brahmin when performing
the death ceremonies of an elder.