Paavan Dave’s Yagnopavit Sanskara – Sacred Thread Ceremony
The Sacred Thread Ceremony is how a boy of about nine years of age accepts his spiritual identity. The ceremony is seen as a second birth, where he accepts a spiritual teacher as a second father and the “Vedas” as a second mother. The Vedas are the ancient Hindu texts, among the oldest sacred scriptures. During the ceremony, he receives his “janoi” or sacred thread, which he wears for the remainder of his life.
Paavan’s ceremony was held at the Stonehenge Golf Club in Warsaw Indiana. Purvi, Paavan’s mother, is a personal friend and we were honored to have photographed his event. Purvi and Mayank (Paavan’s father) played an integral role during the ceremony. The priest who performed the ceremony is Purvi’s great-uncle, Anil Bhatt. While Mr. Bhatt has been a priest in India for over 50 years, this was his first time officiating a thread ceremony. He and his wife travelled from India to be part of this event. This is their first time visiting the US.
The ceremony was attended by family and friends, who travelled from different parts of the country and all the way from India. Symbolic to the shedding of his old life, Paavan’s head was shaved and his clothes changed. He received generous gifts and blessings from all his elders.
While we didn’t understand much of what was going on during the ceremony, we are honored to have been a part of it. Purvi’s family and friends were very helpful and gracious to us. We even tried Indian food, which Eric liked; Lynda, not so much! The colors, symbols and traditions were glorious and beautiful to shoot. Congratulations Paavan!