Scientific Significance of Sindoor

November 29, 2014, In: Marriage

It was earlier believed that Women in India apply Sindoor for their husbands’ long life or further beautify their looks, but our Panditji shares some Scientific Facts behind its application!

Indian women follow many customs as far as their outward appearance goes, with the different hues of sindoor applied between the partings of the hair being one of them. Passed over generations, there are numerous age-old customs that have beautified women over many generations, and married Hindu women practice the application of sindoor or vermillion in the parting of their hair. There is also a mythological connection that comes from the belief that sindoor is the symbol of Sati or Goddess Parvati. The application of sindoor invokes her blessing and is also believed to protect a married woman’s ‘suhaag’, i.e., her husband. The sindoor is also symbolic of female energy, and prominent in northern India.

Astrologically, the forehead is the House of Aries and the color of the associated Lord Mesha (Mars) is red that is considered auspicious. Thus, applying sindoor also is believed to bring good fortune. And just like all traditions are known to have important psychological and scientific reasons for being followed, the same is true for application of sindoor. Composed of a mixture of the metal mercury and turmeric-lime, the benefits are that mercury activates erotic drive and also controls blood pressure. Who would have thought that this simple custom would have so much of scientific thought behind it? Moreover, it is recommended that the sindoor application should be till the point of center of all our feelings, i.e., the pituitary gland. Often referred to as kumkum also, it is applied on everyone as a dot on their forehead, or as a long, vertical symbol during religious functions, or when one visits a temple.

There has been evidence that this cultural practice was evident even as far back as 5000 years. Excavations from the Harappan civilization have also shown sindoor being applied by women. With so many Bollywood potboilers having the significance of Sindoor as their central theme, we for one certainly consider ourselves lucky to be born in a land that has such a rich traditional heritage. These customs give us a glimpse into our intriguing history and make us the custodians who must cherish and carry forward these memoirs of our culture.

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