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Bowing down - Should or Should not?

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Srimadhan

Active member
It is a ancient Hindu tradition to bow down to the elders (Respect) and get their Ashirvad. How do i know if they are elder to us is a different thread altogether. The following questions come to my mind

Question No.1: Known Bad Qualities:
Some elders are bad mouthed and have bad qualities. Should we bow such people?

My opinion: I will not bow.

Question No.2: Not Known about how they are
We do not know about the Bad qualities they have or to our knowledge and information, they have not bad mouthed or have not exhibited bad qualities. Should we bow to such people?

My opinion: Yes I will.

Question No.3: Bowing down to younger ones
It is a ancient Hindu tradition to bow down to the younger one if they are saints. Should we bow down?

My Opinion: How do we know that the younger ones are saints? If I feel that he is a saint, i will bow down.

Your thoughts are welcome..
 

prasad1

Well-known member
If you bow down to someone, you lose nothing (except your ego).
Your friends may not approve of it.

The person who you bow to will get an ego boost.
Most of the bad people may postpone any bad action towards you.
You might get some favors granted.

If the person you are bowing to objects to your bowing, you can appeal to their ego.


I am personally very uncomfortable when bowed to, an ordinary Namaste will do for me.
 

satyam

Member
Vanakkam,


Question No.1: Known Bad Qualities:
Some elders are bad mouthed and have bad qualities. Should we bow such people?
If the situation calls for us to get blessings, nothing wrong in sashtanga namaskaram. Nothing to lose.


Question No.2: Not Known about how they are
We do not know about the Bad qualities they have or to our knowledge and information, they have not bad mouthed or have not exhibited bad qualities. Should we bow to such people?
Generally, humans are good lawyers of their own mistakes and best judges of mistakes of others. Honestly, to varying degrees, we might have erred here and there in life. In many ways all are same only, so nothing wrong to take ashirwad/blessings from questionable characters as long we are bowing to the God in them.

Question No.3: Bowing down to younger ones
It is a ancient Hindu tradition to bow down to the younger one if they are saints. Should we bow down?

My Opinion: How do we know that the younger ones are saints? If I feel that he is a saint, i will bow down.
Young, old, virtuous and vile, anyone can be a teacher. So taking blessings from them even when they are younger is okay. If the self thinks sashtanga namaskar is too much or would be a cause of unnecessary talk, a simple vanakkam/namaste with folded palms will do.


In my life, I did sashtanga namaskarams for my parents, in front of kodi maram in temple, elders when the occasion calls for it and few people that were young and about the same age.

I also think, to be moderate too is ok, I mean by reserving sashtanga namaskarams for temples, elders and gurus and for the rest of people just fold hands as you would say namaste or vanakkam. Either way you are still respecting everyone.

But, I am not sure about criteria of a person or rules in shastras about doing namaskarams to people. I hope the esteemed and knowledgeable people in this forum could help us to understand better, as whatever I am saying are based on practices passed down to me by my elders here.

Thank you.
 

informed

New member
Based on what I heard from various pravachans, person who is bowing and the person who is bowed to, both matters. In general, it is very contextual, but importance is given for one's dharmic knowledge and conduct. If someone has more dharmic knowledge/education and better conduct than you, you can bow. We also need to recognize the possibility that our perception of right conduct may be incorrect, not considering the obvious ones. Sometimes, one's education takes superiority than our ability to judge their actions, for ex, bowing to a vedic educated person is appropriate in most cases irrespective of his age and our perception of his conduct. Pranams.
 

Srimadhan

Active member
Prasad Sir.

Can I understand your version of the answer as
Question No.1 - Yes
Question No.2 - Yes
Question No.3 - You have not answered
 

prasad1

Well-known member
Prasad Sir.

Can I understand your version of the answer as
Question No.1 - Yes
Question No.2 - Yes
Question No.3 - You have not answered


In my opinion:
YES in all cases if your EGO permits it.
NO if your EGO will not permit it.

You can always justify your actions later to yourself and your friends.
 
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