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Significance Of Mother's Day In Hinduism

Geetha Patil
05/06/2019

Mother’s Day event to be celebrated on Sunday, May 12, 2019, offers an opportunity for honoring the mothers of the families along with motherhood, maternal bonds, and the influence of great mothers in different societies. It is usually celebrated on various days in the months of March or May in many parts of the world. On this special day, even mother goddesses and sacred mothers from different faiths are also honored with great reverence. 

According to the philosophy of Sanaatan Dharma, the institution of motherhood is given the pedestal position in Hindu society. For Hindus, every day is a Mother’s Day. Unlike others, Hindus honor, respect, worship, celebrate, and give highest recognition to five mothers in their everyday life: 1) Mother Earth, 2) The cow, 3) The religious texts, 4) The Divine Mother, and 5) The biological mother. These have been considered as the sources of life that provide sustenance for the continuity of humanity, and hence, offering admiration, reverence, worship, and making provisions for their continuity are a few of the duties of their earthly children. 

The word “Maa” in Hindi comprises of a consonant “Ma” and vowel “aa”. This consonant pertains to the heart which evokes the emotions of love, joy and happiness while the vowel relates to “aanand shakti” or the power of bliss. So, one’s mother is the treasure-house of all bliss, love and success. In Hindu philosophy, Durga Maataa is considered “ichha shakti” (power of will), Lakshmi Maa, “gyaan shakti” (the power of knowledge), and Saraswati Maataa, “kriyaa shakti” (power of activity).  The earthly mothers, therefore, strive hard to make sure that her child is well-nourished, his activities are directed by her will, and acquires proper knowledge. That is why, every mother, indeed, can be seen to play a key role in the development of every one of us. Therefore, for Hindus, worship of the mother, in all her five forms is of paramount importance and our dependency on them is a necessity for our successful existence.
 

In Hinduism, mother is the one person who is the most glorified and considered worthy of respect and service. No doubt, she is created with qualities such as love, sacrifice, forbearance and selfless service to her children. The incomparable love possessed by a mother for her children is the subject of praise and reverence in numerous stotras, Maha Shiv Puraan, Ramayana, and other scriptural verses and episodes. The earthly mothers play an active role in a child’s upbringing. As we all know, none can assume her role and she is irreplaceable. The mother’s role as an educator is rightly praised in the following scriptural quote: “a teacher is ten-fold superior to a mere lecturer; a father is a hundredfold to a teacher; and a mother a thousand-fold to a father.” So, the mother is worthier of reverence than father or teacher according to our scriptures.

In the Moksha dharma Parva (Section CCLXVI), Bhishma said: The mother is the remedy for all kinds of calamities. The existence of the mother provides one with protection; the reverses deprivation. The man who is denied of prosperity enters his house, uttering the words, “O mother!”- when you are with me, neither grief nor weakness ever attack me”. A person whose mother exists, even if he happens to be a father of many sons and grandsons and even he himself is hundred years old, in the eyes of his mother he looks like a child of two years of age. Whether the mother is able or disabled, weak or robust, the son is always protected by the mother.
 

According to Shri Swami Ranganath-ananda from Sri Ramakrishna Ashrama: Motherhood is a spiritual and emotional transformation of wifehood. As a wife, a woman does demand and take away some of her husband’s dear time meant for his mother/parents; but the mother, on the other hand, feels that it is her privilege to let him use that time for his wife. If a woman as wife is socially significant, a woman as a mother is spiritually celebrated. The Hindu culture teaches us to consider all women as forms of the one Divine Mother.

In the celebrations of Mothers’ Day, a special emphasis is placed on recollecting and honoring contributions of earthly mothers, divine mothers, Goddesses and thank them with from the bottom of our hearts for blessings and what all they do for our better life, welfare, success, and peace.

 



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