1-Prenatal and Baby Ceremonies-Sanskars
The way Hindu lives ,is wrapped around various rites called Sanskar. The Sanskar is said to be helping for achieving spiritual nourishment, peace of mind and ultimately moksha.
Sansar give a spiritual touch to the important events at different stages of a Hindu life—right from pre-birth to post-death.
Garbhadana. All sources recognize this as the first Sanskar. This is the enthusiastic prayer for a child. This is done for fulfillment of parental duty to continue the race. This sanskar is limited to the family members. This is performed by husband.
Punsavana. This second Sanskar is performed during the third or the fourth month of pregnancy.
The significance of this Sanskar is to invoke divine and good qualities in the chield. According to our ancient Shastras, this ritual is performed in the desire for a male child. The reason for expecting male child is believed to be in the belief that it is the male child who carries the Vansha forward. Like the first Sanskar i.e. Garbhadhan, Punsavana Sanskar is also restricted to the family members.
Simintonnayana. This Sanskar is performed during the seventh month of pregnancy and prayers are offered for the healthy physical and mental growth of the child.
The other importance of this Sankar is to free the expectant mother free from worries since the last 3 months are very difficult for pregnant woman- both physically and mentally.
On the day of this Sanskar, the expectant mother gets food of her desire.
Only women are invited for this ritual and the gathering is kept small The husband performs this ritual.
Jatakarma. This Sanskar is performed at the birth of a child as a welcome sign to the new born child into the family.
Brahmins chant Mantras for a healthy, long life of the child. This Sanskar is restricted to the family level.
During this Sanskar, the father feeds honey to the baby and pierces the baby's ear. This ear piercing is supposed to enhance the memory of the child
Namkaran. This Sanskar is performed on the tenth , eleventh or twelth day with recitation of Mantras. The baby child gets name on completion of this Sankar.
Nishkramana. This Sanskar is performed when the child is taken out of the home for the first time.
The reason for this Sanskar is to show obedience to the sun, moon, fire, wind etc, -the Panchmahabhut
This is supposed to enhance the age and physical and mental development of the child.
Annaprasana. This Sanskar is performed on sixth month , when the child gets solid food for the first time. Mantras recited and oblations are offered to the various deities.
Chudkaram. This Sanskar is shaving the head of child. This is done in first of third year of the child. The body of the child is protected and harmonized by these ceremony.