Picture Courtesy: DWIT News
Before I start, I need to share some of the questions that emerged in my inquisitive mind which drove me to do some exploration.
Why do we ring bells while worshiping in temples?
Why do we light lamp (diya) and incense sticks?
Why do we blow conch (sankha) in temples?
And the list goes on….
I have seen bells hung up at some part of the temple. Not only that, whenever my mother reveres at an early hour in the morning, I have seen her ringing bell toward the end of the ritual. Additionally, I have constantly adored the charming scent of the incense sticks. Despite the fact that my senses have been used to these things by now, I couldn't prevent myself from questioning “why is it done as such?” All these sorts of queries populated my mind and I couldn't control my curiosity.
Here is what I found:
I used to think that bell is just an ordinary instrument that is hung up in temples only for giving an eye-catching sight. However, it is not so. It is more than that and it even has scientific reasons behind its use and significance. Bell is made up of metals comprising of cadmium, lead, copper, zinc, nickel, chromium and manganese. It creates a sound which lasts for minimum of seven seconds that has the capacity to bring together our left and right brain and also is enough to empty one’s mind, giving our soul a sense of awareness.
Now, here comes the purpose for lighting incense sticks. I used to think that incense sticks are used to purify our soul. However, the science behind it is wonderful. The fragrance that is noticeably spread all around after one lights an incense stick has a relieving impact on the mind. One turns out to be relaxed. At that point, when one prays with heart and soul, one enters into a meditative state lessoning anxiety and dejection.
Sadly, the explanation for the lighting of lights before idols was not as much persuading as I had anticipated. I found that lighting of lamps symbolizes harmony in the family. The wick in the traditional oil lamp symbolizes ego and the oil or ghee used symbolizes our negative tendencies. When the wick is lit, then the negative tendencies (oil) melt and the ego perishes. Does it happen? May be.
I had never known that blowing conch can be such advantageous. It has tremendous benefits. As accepted by Vedic and Modern Science, conch (sankha) is believed to destroy the harmful bacteria from atmosphere or at least make them unconscious. According to astrology, its sound destroys the negative energy from atmosphere. It is even believed that playing conch on a regular basis makes one free from respiratory diseases. Not just this, its water sprinkled makes one free from skin diseases. Also, it is believed that playing conch is equal to doing yoga.
Likewise, the thing that intrigues me is the purpose of putting on sandalwood paste between the eyebrows. In yogic science, the point between eyebrows is often considered as the third eye symbolizing the point of awakening. So applying sandalwood paste (chandan) at that point is supposed to increase focus and concentration, relieve headache, keep positive and also has a cooling effect on the body. Not just this, it is also believed to relieve insomnia and stress.
Lastly, every one of these truths made me to thank one thing at the end of the day: My Inquisitive Personality. All credit goes to my inquisitive personality. It drove me to investigate my interests significantly and even motivated me to present it to you all.