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[Information Wanted] Ladies performing Tarpanam


New member
Good morning to all, am glad I can be a part of this forum, which will help me get insights of our rituals and customs.

I have a query, if you can help me.... I am the only child (daughter) of my parents and my parents have passed away, I do their shraddham, but my priest doesn't allow me to do the Tarpanam saying that ladies cannot perform Tarpanam.
Please guide me if I can do the Tarpanam for my parents and if so the method of performing the same.

Thank you


Active member
I do not subscribe to "recent" orthodoxy. I am not a conventionalist.
These rules "that ladies cannot perform tharpanam" is narrow and archaic. Other societies in our own Sanatana Dharma allow it. You need to find the right priest.

The same guru who will shun an ordinary widow would fall at the feet of Indira Gandhi.

Can women do tharpanam?​

The answer is YES.
Sathguru Venkataraman gave us the revolutionary idea (in the 1980s) that women can do pitru tharpanam just as well as men.
Think of this key point: If there are no sons in a family, does that mean the ancestors should be starved of tharpanam? The answer is NO. The daughters can certainly do tharpanam.
For a (departed) man who had daughters but no sons, will anyone do tharpanam with more mental involvement and dedication than his own daughters? NO. So these daughters can certainly do tharpanam for this (departed) man.
Note further that if others do tharpanam for this (departed) man, it will be karunya tharpanam and not pitru tharpanam. Whereas, if his daughters do it, it will be direct, full fledged pitru tharpanam.
Furthermore, there is the issue of mental involvement and dedication mentioned earlier. Because of this, it is ideal if these daughters do pitru tharpanam for this man (their father).
This does not mean that these daughters should make a big deal out of this and put on a show. That will only cause problems. They should do it quietly with humility and devotion. They should realize that their gotra rishi is watching and so they must do this quietly and with utmost respect, without making a show of it or drawing attention towards themselves. If they do it thus, their gotra rishi will be pleased.
However, in the general case (i.e., where there are both sons and daughters), since women generally have a lot more family responsibilities than men, the males in a family should take the lead and do tharpanam and not let that responsibility fall on womenfolk too.
But if the husband does not do tharpanam, the wife can make up for it by doing tharpanam.
Women who have lost their husbands or who are separated from their husbands can do tharpanam.
Women can do karunya tharpanam for those departed souls who cared for them.

Women should use white sesame seeds in their tharpanam. Why? Refer to Sathguru Venkataraman's Siddha writings for the answer.

Garuda Purana says a woman can perform funeral rites in the absence of sons, grandsons or male relatives.

The present-day practice of praying for the birth of a son is the reason for female infanticide. Let us break this ghastly practice.


Active member
A son in hindu family is considered to spread the family tree into future generations.The male offspring is considered as Vanshadharak means one who will save the family link and will pass it on to the future generations.

In hinduism daughter is considered as other's property (Paraya dhan) as she will go after marriage.She is never considered as a family member.That is why dowry is prevalent in Hindu marriages. Only the belongings and gifts that the girl receives from her parents at the time of her marriage is considered her property(Stree Dhan) and she has no share in her parents' property.

So, only the male heir effectuates the final rituals on parents' death and gives fire to pyre (Pinda Daan).

But times are changing. Girls are no longer considered as other's property or paraya dhan.
In most modern courtships the groom's family does not demand any kind of dowry. Girls are having equal rights to perform last rituals of their deceased parents as well as equal share to parents' property.

The constitutions of India have changed the social norms, but the old religious practice has not kept up with the changing social norms.
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