All of us are following the custom of tying the sacred leaves at the entrance of our homes and other places during our special occasions and on various festivals. It has been one of the important parts in culture and tradition of Hindus.
The hanging of leaves near the entrance of the house is popularly known as toran or thoranam. It is considered extremely auspicious as it is believed that it keeps the evil spirits and negative energy at a bay. It is also believed that tying the leaves leads to fulfillment of one’s wishes. Most of the time leaves of mango are used for this purpose. In some areas, Ashoka leaves are also used. Five leaves of the mango tree in a pot (Kalash), smeared with Haldi and Sindhur is a custom site, in any Hindu religious ceremony
The significance of hanging leaves is also mentioned in ethics and various Puranas. It is also mentioned in Bhagavad Gita ‘At each and every gate there were burning lamps and big water pots decorated with different colored cloth, strings of pearls, flower garlands and hanging mango leaves’ (Srimad Bhagavatam 4.9.55)
The mango tree and its leaves are believed to be the residence of Gods like Lakshmi, Govardhan, Gandharva and the God of fertility. The significance of tying a garland of mango leaves, relates to Lord Ganesha and Lord Murugan, the two sons of Goddess Parvati and Lord Shiva, who were fond of mangoes.
It is said that God Murugan was the one who insisted people to tie green mango leaves, as it symbolizes as a fertile crop and for general well-being. Since then the mango leaves are considered to be very auspicious.
In South Asia’s diverse communities whether its Hindu, Muslim, Buddhist and Christian mangoes are represented in religious themes. There are legends, who state that Lord Siva in the phallic form (Linga) took place under a mango tree. The Buddhist myths also tell a lot about the significance of mango tree and leaves. The elements of mango leaves, often appears in Buddhist art. Jataka tales, talk about the great miracle of Sravasti, which took place while Buddha enlighted people, by astonishingly reproducing himself, in front of a mango tree in various forms.
During the wedding, the mango leaves are tied at the entrance of the house which makes sure that, the couple blessed with children. Tying leaves to newly built house signifies good fortune to the house and its occupancies
Not only the tradition of tying leaves holds cultural importance but is also important from the scientific point of view. Scientifically, it is said that these green leaves absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen which helps in keeping the surrounding atmosphere clean and hygienic. It is also said to possess anti-bacterial properties against the positive bacteria. When the air containing carbon dioxide passes through the garland of leaves it gets purified and insects get attracted to garland leaving the occupants of the area.
These leaves are also regarded as major stress reliever and buster. As green colour is associated with the nature it is said that one gets relief and gets away from all the tensions by indulging and spending time in the nature. One’s brain gets rejuvenated, attention power increases and anxiety reduces. Mango leaves are also used for cure of certain ailments
Source : Sanskriti Magazine