Thamboolam | Offering Thamboolam in Puja

Thamboolam image

Thamboolam image

Thamboolam (Tambula) is the combined name which is normally given to Betel leaf and Betel nut. It is believed  that the goddesses Parvathi, Lakshmi  and Saraswathi in live in betel leaf, it was being chewed by males  and females for getting a great super feeling. Women also  used to do it for making their lip colour red.

It is a custom almost throughout India to offer  Thamboola to the  guests (athithi_), before they depart to their home  Also  It was a practice of all  people to chew Betelnut and betel leaf on which lime  is applied  after a heavy meals. Scientists did find that betelnut has carcinogenic properties and slowly this custom is disappearing.

Thamboola in South india

Thamboola is given during many occasions in south India..

 1. When  unmarried and married   ladies(who are not widows ) come to our house  , it is a custom to  give , Thamboola, Kumkum   and  round  Turmeric roots to them. .

2. Since betel leaf is considered  as the personification of truth  , on the day  when   marriage engagement day(nischya THamboolam- ), Betel leaf and Betel nut are  exchanged.

3. It is also a practice to offer Thamboola   to gods   during worship  .This is done after  food articles   are offered to God.

 4. Whenever  a  DAkshina(religious fee)   or Dhaana(gift) is given , it is always accompanied   by  Thamboola

 5. It is a practice   for ladies of the family   to invite  other married ladies  on festival days or on days when they   do a special pooja,  and offer them Thamboola.It is also considered as sign  of friendship

 6. When we go to another  home to invite them to a function in our house  normally thamboola is offered

 7. Thamboola   is given to  make mother Goddess  Happy .It is believed she will take Thamboola from you in some form.She  may  come   even  as servant maid, lady selling flowers  etc  and so  being Choosy in giving Thamboola   is bad   and may cause harm to you

A full and elaborate  thamboola  in South India  consists of

1. Betel leaf  , 2.Betel nut , 3 Turmeric   and kumkum  4.Comb 5.A small mirror, 6.Bangles, 7.Yellow thread   8.Coconut 9.Banana fruit 10.Flowers  11,Maruthani (mehandhi)   12. Kajal   , 13.Dakshinai   14,Ravikkai  cloth or Sari (some people add a small piece  of Jaggery with it)

a.Among themTurmeric, Kumkum and yellow thread increases the life span of your husband.

b. Comb increases life span of husband

c. Mirror protects health of husband

d. Bangles would increase  your peace of mind

e. Coconut  to get your sins removed-Dehusked coconut  is preferred

f. Banana  gets you effect  of giving food as charity

g. Flower  increases   your happiness

h. Mehandhi    to prevent skin diseases

i. Kajal   for preventing evil eye  falling on you

j. Dakshina(fees)  to get blessing of Goddess Lakshmi

k. Blouse piece/sari   to get effect of Vasthra  Dhana-Once upon a time Blouse was useful to  all ladies but nowadays  with  ladies shifting   their dress  habits  , it has become less  useful.Instead of Blouse piece/Sari, you can give useful presents to them.

It is not necessary to give all the above things while giving thamboola

If some one invites you   for Thamboola  , it is believed   the  one invited should go .Even if they give only betel leaf and betel  nut, it should be received with happiness

Rules  of giving Thamboola

1.The one who gives THamboola should face the east

2,The one who receives it should sit on a chair or mat facing them\
3.It is normal to give some thing to drink to them, at least water

4,If you are giving coconut, slightly applu turmeric on it , put a kumkum mark , show it to Goddess and give it to them

5.All materials of Thamboola should be kept on a  plate and offered

6.If the receiver is older than you, after giving Thamboola, you should also do namaskaram to them

7.In Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh, the thamboolam materials are  kept on a muram (winnow) and covered with another Muram and offered.

8.In some cases the Thamboola materials are offered by covering with our Sari and the receiver   also does that.

It is definite  that Goddess would bless the person who gives and receives Thamboolam.

Thanking Shri P.R.Ramachander for this post.

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