It has been exactly seven years since I went to India. The last time I went was to perform Brahmopadesham (supreme teaching), and Sacred thread ceremony for my younger son. The sacred thread signifies the following: the one who wears it should be pure in thought, word, and action. remember the debt that is owed to the guru, parents, and society. that everything in the universe is created by Brahma and merges with Brahma.
We had performed the same ceremony for my autistic boy in the US in our home. We had a priest who patiently did the ceremony. My boy beat all the odds and enjoyed his unique day. Yes he was quirky and had his own way in certain things but as a Mom I felt happy his rituals happened perfectly.
To compensate for missing certain pieces of my older one’s ceremony, I decided to hold my younger one’s ceremony at my Guru’s Ashram in India. My husband and my parents were nervous on so many different levels as to how my autistic boy would behave since he was leaving his home court and his playing field was different. My son has sleeping problems and not only the travel, the jetlag of nine to ten hours is something very hard for him to tolerate. I think this is the time, you need family and they all came through for us. (Everyone got the taste of his hyperactivity and I had made a huge mistake of stopping some of his meds just before the trip, so it was too many injuries for him). My younger boy, since he got all the attention enjoyed this ritual, that he even shaved his hair. Since it was held in an Ashram every aspect of the ritual was followed.
As I look back at both these ceremonies, I wonder how I planned and executed the same with my boy. Both required too much of planning and the energy needed was huge. I also needed a lot of support from my family. I think my love for the traditions and rituals that go along with all these ceremonies and my faith in the Almighty helped me through the same.
Autism has made me a spiritual person. I do know some rituals and traditions is hard to follow with my son. I have accepted that. But I am really grateful I was able to do these ceremonies for my sons.
The months of February and March, Magha in Sanskrit or Maasi in Tamil are considered auspicious to perform this ceremony in India. So a small walk through the memory lane.
The passing of the Gayathri Mantra is done in a secret way , covering up with a cloth. We had to play this game so many times so that my son was psychologically prepared for this event.😀