When someone passes away inthe family ans we have to observe the one year mourning period,

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Namaskaram When someone passes away inthe family ans we have to observe the one year mourning period, what are the dos and donts during the festivals and pooja days. We cant make sweets or any bakshanam during major festivals. Can we still perform the poojai and in that case, what neivedhyam is allowed? We cant keep kolu during navarathri. But can we just offer manjal kumkum to ladies? It is quite confusing as each person states different practices. Kindly clarify.

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Answer: During the one full year of mourning period, visits to any Temple with Dwajasthambam, Hill station temple visits and Theertha yatra are not to be undertaken. However, regular and daily pooja at home is to be continued. What you simply prepare at home can be offered as Naivedyam.

Though no festivals to be celebrated, offering of Manjal/Kungkumam to visiting guests is permissible. No kolu at home; partaking in any Kolu at others home is to be avoided.

Oh, if I put the entire donts during these period, people might even get scared to observe the entire procedures and skip observing it in total ! Yes, the strict adherence needs on many counts – viz. the Kartha not to shave for that period and grow deeksha (beard) till the aabdeekam, not to use pillows or cushion  beds, no sexual union, avoid taking food from outside places, not to attend any marriage or other auspicious functions, not to partake foods in other Srardhams either as guest or as Bhokta; fasting on all Amavasya, beginning date of each Tamil calander month, fasting the day earlier to every masyam day and so on! Considering the present days circumstances and overseas stays by many, lets try to adhere to maximum possible extent that is practicable.

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