Annaprashan Sanskar Worship Method

There are a total of 16 sacraments described in Hinduism, out of which Annaprashan is an important sacrament. It is considered as the seventh sanskar among the 16 sanskars. Feeding food to the child is started with this sanskar. This rite is called by different names in different states across the country, such as Churunu in Kerala and Mukhe Bhaat in Bengal.

Annaprashan Sanskar Worship Method

In this article of MyBabyCare, we will discuss in detail the Annaprashan ritual. In this article, we will know why this ritual is considered so special and what is the importance of this ritual. Along with this, we will also tell you how Annaprashan Sanskar is performed and will also give you some special tips related to it.

Let us first know the importance of Annaprashan Sanskar:

Importance of Annaprashan Sanskar

Before Annaprashan, the infant drinks only the mother's milk, so the importance of this ceremony increases, because this is the time when the infant takes food for the first time, apart from the mother's milk. There is also a verse in Sanskrit about Annaprashan, 'Annashanamatrigarbe Malashadypi Shuddhayati' i.e. the defects of unhygienic food in the baby while in the mother's womb, should be diagnosed and food should be given to nourish the baby. Talking about the scriptures, the importance of Annaprashan has been considered in these too.

When should one do Annaprashan Sanskar?

Annaprashan is performed when the baby is six or seven months old. This is because for six months the baby only drinks breast milk. Also, by the seventh month, the baby is able to digest light food. In such a situation, doing Annaprashan in the sixth or seventh month is also beneficial in terms of the health of the baby.

Where should one do Annaprashan?

Usually, Annaprashan Sanskar is performed in the temple or at home. You can also get the Annaprashan Sanskar done by organizing a special event. You can choose it according to your tradition. Let us tell you that in Kerala, people conduct their child's Annaprashan in the famous Hindu temple of Guruvayur, while in Central India and North-East India, people conduct Annaprashan at home.

How is Annaprashan Sanskar done?
At the beginning of the Annaprashan ceremony, the child is placed on the maternal uncle's lap and it is the maternal uncle who feeds him for the first time. After eating the first morsel, other family members feed the child with food, offer prayers and bring gifts for the child. During this, clay, gold ornaments, a pen, book, and food are kept in front of the child. Out of these, on whom the child lays his hand, his future is predicted. There is such a belief:

  • If a child lays his hand on a gold ornament, it is believed that he will be wealthy in the future.
  • If the child lays his hand on the pen, he will be wise.
  • If the child lays his hand on the book, he will be ahead in learning.
  • If the child lays his hands on the soil, he will have property.
  • If the child lays his hand on the food, he will be merciful.

Note: There may be changes in the method of Annaprashan Sanskar based on different religions and traditions.

What kind of food is fed to the baby during Annaprashan?

Even though it may be the first meal of the baby, a variety of dishes can be prepared for the baby in this ritual. However, it also depends on the region and community you belong to. During this the following things are fed to the baby:

  • Kheer
  • steamed rice or casserole
  • Meat dishes
  • fish
  • Dal, Sambar or Rasam

Tips for conducting Annaprashan Sanskar Ceremony

Annaprashan is a very special ceremony for the child, but during this time some precautions need to be taken in terms of safety. Below we are giving you some special tips related to Annaprashan Sanskar, which will be useful for you:

  • Always take special care of cleanliness while feeding the baby during Annaprashan. In such a situation, it is necessary that every person feeding him washes his hands properly so that the child does not get an infection.
  • Put the baby to sleep well before the ceremony, so that he does not become sleepy during the ceremony.
  • Always dress your baby in soft, comfortable, and loose-fitting clothes.
  • Make sure that there is not too much crowd around the child. In such a situation, only invite your special guests.
  • If it's cold weather, always carry a baby sweater. If it gets too cold, wear it. At the same time, if it is summer, keep the baby's cotton clothes with you, so that his clothes can be changed immediately if needed.
  • Always keep napkins and tissues around to keep your baby clean after feeding.
  • Apart from this, keep giving rest to the child in between so that he does not get tired. A child can become irritable when tired.
  • During this time, keep your child away from smoke. This may irritate his eyes.
  • Don't forget to make an album of photos to make this moment memorable.
  • Although this ritual is to feed food to the child, but keep in mind that do not feed him so much that his stomach gets upset. Since everyone present at the ceremony will feed her, make sure that each person feeds the baby only a little.

Suggestions for return gifts in Annaprashan

This tradition has been seen in the Indian people that never let the guests come home empty-handed. This is the reason why guests are always given something or the other while leaving. According to the traditions, earlier people used to give omen coins while leaving, but with the passage of time now the nature of gifts is changing. However, giving a return gift also depends on the budget of the individual. For this, it is necessary that you first make a budget and give return gifts accordingly. However, as of today, we are giving some ideas of return gifts. You can give the following things to guests as return gifts:

  • Cash: Giving cash in return gifts has been in vogue for a long time. According to your budget, you can give by putting cash in the envelope.
  • Sweets: The tradition of giving sweets as gifts has been going on for a long time and most people can still give sweets as gifts to the guests. If you want, you can also give a box of sweets as a return gift.
  • Gadgets: You can give things like smart fit bands or watches to your special guests.
  • Online Shopping Coupons: Nowadays online shopping is very popular. In such a situation, you can give online shopping vouchers to your guests.
  • Dry Fruits: A box of dry fruits can also be given as a return gift. It is also a wonderful gift which will be loved by the guests.
  • Silver Items: Apart from this, you can also give a silver coin to the guests.

Since, the time of Annaprashan Sanskar is very special for the child and his parents. In such a situation, it is important that you should have the right information about this. Apart from this, you can also make the event more fun by doing some fun activities. If you have done Annaprashan for your child, then definitely share his/her experience with us in the comment box. Also, tell us how you made the event unique and memorable.