70th birthday is celebrated as "Bhima ratha shanti".
Shri and Shrimathi A G Chandra Shekar Rao, from Aroor, Belmar, who celebrated his Bheema Ratha Santhi today, Friday 4th May 2012, have experienced inexplicable joy and bliss. It was like a wedding celebrations.His children Durgesh, Rajesh and Roopesh organized this event at Shri Jnaneshwari Sabha Bhavana, K G Road, Udupi Dist. There were more than 400 people participated in the celebrations and the rituals were quite many. There was shanthi homa, the elders blessed the couple with holy water, and 16 ladies (Sumangaleyaru) were given vaayana daana (rice, saree, haldi kum kum, bangles etc),
|Chandru Mama's sisters Sarojini, Kusuma & Leela|
In this context, one must understand the underlying meaning in naming this ceremony as Bheema Ratha Shanthi. It does not mean that all these couples must be physically strong and courageous like Bheema, the Mahabharata hero. There are certain traditional rules for the performance of this Bheema Ratha Santhi. But there is no age restriction as such for this ceremony. By God's grace, everyone has sath sankalpa (good thoughts). Normally, married couples celebrate the Shastyabdha Poorthi ceremony when the husband attains the age of sixty years, hoping to lead a peaceful and happy married life. They also celebrate when the husband attains the age of 70 years. Generally, people believe 70 years of age as the deadline in the life-span of an individual. When an individual crosses these important milestones in his married life these blissful occasions are named and celebrated as Bheema Ratha Santhi. Unable to understand and appreciate the importance of these holy occasions, some children in this Kali Yuga are sending their parents away when they cross 60 years in life.
On the other hand, children should take greater care of their parents when they attain sixty years of age and beyond. Generally, children are under the impression that people beyond the age of 70 years are useless and a burden to the family as well as to the society. But the truth is otherwise. In fact, the enthusiasm, encouragement and mental strength increase after a person crosses 70 years. It is only after 70 years that the mental faculties and Atmic strength express themselves in full measure. Prior to that, they also behave like other human beings. They will not specially strive to set an example to others. The mental faculties, divine force, and will power in a person will manifest fully after 70 years and prompt him to set a new goal in life. As a result, such elderly persons will be contemplating upon and exploring the secrets of life.
|Rajesh with Nalini & Shobha|
The divine force latent in these elderly persons is beyond the reach of the youth. It manifests in ever-so-many ways in their actions. Today, we find several youngsters talking ill of their parents and making fun of them. If the youth of today wish to understand to face the challenges in life, they must live with their parents and constantly observe the noble qualities that manifest in the actions of their parents.
May 4, 2012