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Location: Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania, United States

"It little profits that an idle king, By this still hearth, among these barren crags, Match'd with an agèd wife, I mete and dole Unequal laws unto a savage race, That hoard, and sleep, and feed, and know not me."

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Tvam jeeva sharadām shatam

The following appeared in the Obituary section of The Hindu today.

RESPECTUL HOMAGE:

Mrs. Kalyana Sundari (93) Demise: 14-02-2006
Kolinjivadi V. Narayana Swami (102) Demise: 24-02-2006

United in Life for 82 years.
Reached Heavenly Abode within 11 Days.

I'm truly stunned by this. These days, when the average life expectancy is around 70, here is a couple that has lived together for almost four generations. Leave alone arguments about modern marriages not working, or about the durability of the marriages of old, just imagine what things of history they would have beheld together...

My uncle, who brought this piece to my notice, throws in another line. According to Hindu religious belief, the soul of a departed person does not immediately attain its destination. Rather it is believed that the soul wanders in this world for 11 days - some say, the soul remains close to the bereaved, and enters Heaven only on the 12th day. This is the reason why the first ceremony is conducted on the twelfth day.

Here are two people, united for so long, and the wife never left her man. She stayed with him in life and in death, and when the time came for her to bid adieu, she took him along.

“Grow old along with me!
The best is yet to be.
The last of life, for which the first was made.”

2 Comments:

Blogger Vinayak said...

Touching....

3/05/2006 08:34:00 PM  
Anonymous Hi said...

I wish to narrate what I have heard as the sequence. The departed soul does not enter the Heaven at the end of 11 days. The general belief is that during the first 13 days it is in the same environs where it used to live. After the 13th day it joins the others from the same family who had pre deceased but then is not straightway allowed to join their ranks. There is a wait of 12 months when the monthly karmas' are performed by the `karthas' Only after the annual ceremonies are over, the soul enters the Heaven.

3/07/2006 05:49:00 AM  

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