1. What is the importance of performing ‘Oti bharane’ in Goddess worship ?
Invariably offering Her a sari and a blouse-piece concludes the ritualistic worship of a Goddess. Offering this to a Goddess is akin to praying to Her attributeless form to work for one’s spiritual progress and welfare through the medium of ‘with attribute’ form. Panch-opachar puja (worship by 5 characteristic sub-rituals) in any ritualistic worship is related to the attributeless form of God. The prayer to the Goddess to become functional, with the offering of a sari and a blouse piece helps the attributeless form of the Goddess to manifest in ‘with attribute’ form in the sari and the blouse-piece.
(Note: Ritual of ‘offering a sari and a blouse-piece’ is called as ‘Oti bharane’.)
2. The correct method of ‘Oti bharane’ while worshipping a Goddess
A. The sari offered to the Goddess should preferably be made of cotton or silk fabric, because when compared to other fabrics, these fabrics have a better capacity to attract and retain the sattvikfrequencies emanating from the Goddess.
B. Stand in front of the Goddess holding the sari with open palms, at chest level; place the blouse-piece on top of the sari and then a coconut and some rice grains over the blouse piece. The tuft at one end of the coconut should be towards the Goddess.
C. Pray with utmost bhav (spiritual emotion) to the Goddess to bless you with chaitanya and for your spiritual progress. This helps manifest the ‘with attribute’ Goddess principle.
D. After offering all the ingredients of ‘Oti’ at the feet of the Goddess, offer some rice grains on them.
E. If possible, the lady offering the ‘Oti’ (only a married lady is permitted to offer an ‘Oti’ to a Goddess) should wear the sari offered to the Goddess as prasad (holy sacrament) and partake of the coconut too as prasad.
3. The subtle process in performing the ritual of ‘Oti bharane’ and its merits
A. The Goddess principle is attracted towards the tuft of the coconut. The coconut helps the principle permeate into the sari and the blouse-piece. Consequ-ently the frequencies emanating from the tuft of the coconut form a protective sheath around the body of the embodied soul performing the worship.
B. Through the cloth, with the help of absolute Earth element, frequencies with sattva attribute get transmitted. These frequencies along with the help of absolute Water element present in coconut water, gain momentum and become functional. As a result a protective sheath of these frequencies is formed around the body of the embodied soul perfor-ming the worship. Similarly, the sattvikwaves which permeate the sari and the blouse-piece help in purifying the prandeha (vital body) & the pranmayakosh (vital sheath) of the embodied soul.
C. The posture of standing while holding the palms together at the chest level helps in activating the chandranadi (the subtle lunar channel). It also helps in increasing the particles of the sattva attribute in the manomaya kosh (mental sheath), resulting in mental peace. This posture is very helpful in the embodied soul surrendering to the Goddess. The sattva-laden frequencies emanating from the Goddess enter and spread into the body of the embodied soul through his palms. This in turn results in activation of the anahat chakra (the energy centre at the level of chest) and helps in awakening the bhavof the embodied soul towards the Goddess. It further helps in purification of the gross and subtle bodies of the embodied soul. When bhav of a embodied soul towards the Goddess is high, it helps in longer retention of the sattva attribute gained from the ritualistic worship.
4. What is the benefit in specific colour selection of the sari and blouse-piece offered to the Goddess?
The objective of offering a specific object to a specific Deity has been explained earlier. Similarly, offering a specific colour sari and a blouse-piece that attracts the Goddess principle the most in least time, helps activate the principle of that Goddess for the embodied soul. The table ahead gives the names of the Goddess and the colour that attracts Its principle in the least time.
(Tarak + Marak)
|1. Sri Durga||None + Red 100%|
|2. Sri Mahalaxmi||Orange 40% + Red 60%|
|3. Sri Laxmi||Yellow 60% + Red 40%|
|4. Sri Mahasaraswati||White 60% + Red 40%|
|5. Sri Saraswati||White 100% + None|
|6. Sri Mahakali||Purpule 80% + Red 20%|
|7. Sri Kali||Purple 100% + None|
Note 1: In this table, if the Incarnation of the Goddess is related to only one principle, then only one colour is given. If the Incarnation is related to two different principles, two colours attracting both are given. E.g. Sri Durgadevi is related to the destroyer (Marak) principle, hence the colour related to that principle i.e. only the red colour is mentioned against Her name.
5. Why is it beneficial to offer, a nine yard sari instead of a five yard one to a Goddess ?
When an embodied soul with bhav towards a Goddess, doing spiritual practice according to the Path of Guru’s Grace offers oti the colour of the sari does not matter because anyway she derives the expected benefit because of her high level of bhav. However seekers at the primary level or those doing spiritual practice according to the Path of Action should perform each and every ritual according to the prescribed scriptural rules. Hence they should offer a nine yard sari to the Goddess instead of a five yard one. Offering a nine yard sari to a Goddess represents the functioning of the Goddess through Her nine forms, as per the requirement of the devotee. The number ‘nine’ represents the nine main forms or incarnations of Sri Durgadevi. The nine yards (levels) of the sari represent Her nine incarnations carrying out Her mission. Offering a nine yard sari thus implies invoking the basic unmanifest Divine Energy which encompasses all the manifest forms of the Goddess, that is Sri Durgadevi, to manifest in all Her nine forms to perform the required mission.
6. Why is the khann offered to a Goddess folded as a triangle?
‘The triangle is related to the Energy of will of Brahma from the trinity of Devta viz. Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh. The frequencies of Energy of will from the universe follow a triangular path moving from right to left. Offering a khann wrapped in a triangular fashion implies strengthening of the Energy of will and seeking the grace of the Primal energy, Sri Durgadevi with the intention of making spiritual progress. This ritual results in activating the Energy of will of the Primal energy that showers devotee with blessings.’