Faith

Mantra to protect children

Kamsa sends Putana to kill the baby Krishna, growing up in Gokula. Srimad Bhagavatam says she went as a lovely lady. Why did Putana have to adorn herself and look good? It was the norm in the past for a mother to dress up well and look pleasant, when she picked up her child to feed it, so that the child looking at her would be happy. Nampillai says this practice was observed widely. The importance of breastfeeding is stressed thus, elaborated V.S. Karunakarachariar in a mantra. Also, the first time a mother feeds her child, the father has to utter a mantra. Apsatambha sutra says that soon after the child is born, the mother must feed it from her right breast, while the father recites the mantra. The mantra goes thus: “Let no demons hurt your child. Let there be no danger to this child from ghosts. Let milk yielding cows not hurt this child. Let this child have a lot of affection for you. This child will drink up your old age. This child should get strength through your milk. ” So, the mantra says that neither harmful beings like demons, nor harmless ones like cows should hurt the child in any way. The phrase used in the mantra for the child is “dhanasya priyaa,” meaning the dear child is the mother’s wealth. Thus breastfeeding was given great importance, with a ritual and a mantra dedicated to it. When Putana puts Krishna to her breast, he sucks not only her milk, but her life as well.

Later, Krishna recalling the incident, praises Vasudeva’s adherence to prescribed practices as having protected Him. He is referring here to the fact that when He was born, Devaki breastfed Him, and that Vasudeva recited the mantra for His protection at that time. The Lord showed the world the importance of this ritual and how the mantra serves to protect the baby.


Our code of editorial values

This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Sep 24, 2021 2:52:34 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/society/faith/mantra-to-protect-children/article35670868.ece

Next Story