Apara Kaaryam related short video



I had my own share of experience of this when I lost my mother in Jan. Due to various logistics reasons, I was unable to recommend a Sastrigal that I know in W.Mambalam and instead dealt with a different Sastrigal. While I am writing this post to criticize about any Vadhyar, my intent is to let others know to speak up or say “no” at times. I was originally given a budget of 5 Lakhs to do the 13-day kaaryams and finally I had to negotiate to bring it down to market average. While the vaadhyar did not insist that I should do everything he listed but he was terribly disappointed when I said that I am not going to do few things.  I fully agree to this video’s last statement – “this apara kaaryam should not become like an opportunity exploit when the family is in grief.”. This is the time that we need gentle and consoling support from vaideekas.

Categories: Periyava TV

14 replies

  1. I think there is also another dimension to this. Our (3 brothers and one sister) mother too passed away an year back and we wanted to do all the karmas properly. We decided to do the karyams in my brother’s house in Chennai as against going to the mukthi karya sthala. Our vaadhyar has been with us for the last 30 plus years- part of many of our family’s marriage, seemandham, poonals, son’s and daughter’s marriage…. Yet when he gave the quote, we were all shocked because it was a huge number… When we told him that it was not we expected, he said, I can do it in whatever price you want and am not going to bargain with you. But here are the reasons…
    1. If you do it in your home, the people who come to receive dhana do not have the option of receiving dhana’s from any other karmas.. So in order to get them here, I will have to pay them double..Or I will have to cut down the number of people.
    2. The amount also depends on the number of people who are identified to receive the dhana’s and their qualifications. There are some people who are well read, and do their nithya anushtanams, religiously and are considered worthy of receiving dhana’s.. And then there are some who do this as a profession. Their only qualification is their poonal and some of them do not even do their sandhayavandanams regularly. After receiving dhana, they continue to do whatever they are doing and do not spend the rest of the day in Gayathri japa or diet control .which .they are supposed to do.. (they are willing to receive lower amount as dhana) So it all depends on the number of people you want to give the various dhana’s and their quality.. You can decide what you want and I will do it . No issues.

    So finally we decided on a figure that we thought will be able to afford and that will do justice to our mother and complete all the karyams properly. He did a great job. On two of those days, he also was able to persuade a nithya agnihotri to come and receive the dhana’s. We also did the karyams on all the 13 days as against what some people do now a days- combine them in to just few days..

    The reason I am writing in detail about this is that there are some reasons for the high cost that is being charged and what one can possibly get for the high cost….

    • Spot on observation. On a different note, 2 points to consider:
      1. People bargain the roadside vendor on vegetables and feel good because they can. The very same vegetables wrapped in cellophane with a bar code and price slapped on it and packaged nicely will be bought with out a murmur by the same people because they are the weaker party in terms of bargaining power. Something similar with Vaideekas.

      2. People want 3BHK flat, car, cellphone, plane travel, all white goods etc for themselves and their family – so want to earn a lot of money to enjoy these. However a Vaideeka who might want the same for his children is branded greedy. Apparently, only the English educated Brahmins should deserve these it seems according to the other commenters here!

      3. We destroyed the social net for Brahmins to support their families over centuries – this social net ensured the vaideekas did not go after money and did their swaharma. Now we want to make a living and beat Ike vaideekas of yesteryears while we enjoy luxuries! What a great social contract!

      P.s: I am a laukika not a vaideeka.

      • No sir. You’re missing my point. In fact I used to say the exact same thing you wrote to my father when we debate on this topoc. I vehemently support vaideekas normally. Point is that the cost of doing something should not change based on where one works. veda and sastra says the same list of things to do be it for a president of the country or for a beggar when they die. just because you are doing it for president your service fee need not be high (theoretically). The moment they know that the concerned person is working abroad, the fee went up high. Like I said he did not know that we already spent roughly Rs 10 Lacs in hospitals. Besides, even people work in abroad could have financial restrictions. WE all want the vaideekas to have much much better life without a doubt.

      • It is true. When the cost of the rituals is exponentially increasing every year, I am sure, the future generation in the next 10-20 years will have little interest to do this when the total cost for the 13 day karyam could be in the range of 10-15 lakhs! This seems to be in a self destruct mode….

  2. Thanks to the Sri Sastrigal for making a request to fellow sastrigals not to make the Apara Karyams very costly. Janakiraman Nagapattinam

  3. Perhaps, the Brahmin Sangam can take up the matter and fix a maximum rate according to the different locations in consultation with the vaideekas and publish the same for all to know. thje ashikas also should try to learn and understand the fundamental procedures and ceremonies for all Vaideeka karmas, even though they may not or need not ,know the mantras by heart.

    The Brahmin Sangam can select Vaideekas who are willing to perform the ceremonies at least cost for various ceremonies and publish the same so that they can get the income by the volume of work they can get.

    • Many times few vadhyars fix a standard rate for vaideeka karyams and don’t bring it down. But still there are many vadhyars who do at economical cost to encourage people to perform homams and vaideeka karyams. Hats off to them. It is raining only because of them.

  4. in each profession there will be few persons who are money oriented, this area also no exception. This is part of Kali yugam. Please understand, as people we are also not 100% perfect. God should only change their attitude to make them more human.

  5. Mahesh
    At the outset, my heartfelt condolences on your bereavement.
    May Mahaperiyava guide the noble soul to immortality.

    As regards your comments on the present day vaideekas in Tamilnadu, i would say that you have been too soft in your words, probably out of respect for their ‘Veda-Adhyanana’ in their youth.

    But things are actually very very bad with the entire Brahmin community, and especially Vaideekas, in Chennai. I have seen several instances, when the body arrives from the hospital, these guys get the news somehow and start flocking the bereaved household with ‘attractive packages’, depending on your status, money and your own grief. (The more sad you are the more higher bid they will make).

    Most of them do not have any sort of empathy for the bereaved family and money making is their only intention. Their have tie up with the funeral agents, Brahmanaal-agent, persons in the crematorium etc. SO you cannot escape the noose set by your Vaadhyaar, at any stage. Even the daanams are to be given only to his nominated brahmanaas who mostly sell it off later at a reduced price. In total, the entire ceremony has become of a mockery of Vaideeka Karma. Not only apara karma, this is the pitiable situation even in marriage and upanayaham ceremonies.

    Right from Mahaperiyava to the present Peedaathipathi, every Acharya have been insisting on the Vaideekas (and the Brahmanon community) to give up their greed and avarice. But it has fallen on deaf years. Probably this could be one the reason for the anti-brahmin tirade in Tamilnadu.
    At this rate the younger generation will have no respect or regard for the Vaideeka Dharma.

    • Thanks for the condolences. Yes, I was intentionally soft on my criticism. He knew that me and my brother are from US but what he did not know was how much we spent on my mother’s hospitalization. I even told him a rough number but it didn’t matter to him much. Anyways, my intention was not to correct him – but only for others to be firm and not to hesitate in negotiating or even change the vaadhyar if needed.These attitudes should not cause a negative perception to the next generation to do the apara kaaryams….

      • True. We can only pray that the next generation of Vaideekas understand the precarious position of the Vaideeka Dharma and act accordingly. And ofcourse we, common brahmins, also need to change our mindset a lot.

  6. The name of this kind hearted Shasthrigal, he gave his nick name only,may be shared so that we can guide some ppl in distress.I was told by many that in Mambalam a Vaathyar with starting letter R with smooth words milks ppl dry using their distressing time.

  7. இந்த சாஸ்திரிகள் பேசியது மனதிற்கு இதமாக இருந்தது .அபர காரியம் செய்விப்பது அசுவமேக யாகத்திற்கு சமம் என்று மஹாஸ்வாமிகள் சொல்லியிருக்கிறார் . ஆனால் இந்த காலத்து சாஸ்திரிகள் வணிகமாக நினைத்து 13 நாட்களுக்கும் சேர்த்து 3 to 5 லட்சங்கள் என வாய் கூசாமல் கேட்கிறார்கள் 90% சாஸ்திரிகள் நன்றாக சம்பாதித்து விட்டார்கள் அவர்களுக்கு வருமான வரியும் கிடையாது . மனிதாபிமானம் இல்லாமல் இருக்கிறார்கள் .இவர்கள் மாறவேண்டும் .

    • I fully agree. Vadhayars exploit humans without any compassion. Isn’t compassion more important than mantras?

      – Ganesh

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