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    Baby's Mundan Ceremony - Tips, Precautions, and Preparation
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    mundan ceremony
    18 February 2016

    Baby's Mundan Ceremony - Tips, Precautions, and Preparation

    5 mins read
    Health & Safety
    for Toddlers, Pre-schoolers
    10.5K engaged
    Tonsuring is an important rite of passage for a child. Yet, it can be confusing and upsetting. Familiarize yourself with the procedure of the mundan ceremony of a toddler so that you know what to expect.


    In this article

    What Is Mundan Ceremony: A Quick History
    When Is Mundan Sankar Vidhi Performed
    Hair Growth After the Mundan Ceremony
    Preparing for the Tonsure Ceremony
    Tips for a Safe First Mundan Ceremony

    The mundan ceremony is an elaborate affair and needs a lot of preparation. As parents, you and your partner would do well to assign responsibilities to all the family members so that you’re free to attend to your baby on the big day.

    What Is Mundan Ceremony: A Quick History

    Mundan ceremony or 'chaula' is performed during the first or third or fifth year of a child's life. Chudakarana sanskar head shaving is believed to improve hair growth and hair texture, although the reason behind this ritual goes deeper than that. The practice is not restricted to Hinduism; Muslims, Jews and even Christians may perform their versions of the ceremony.

    When Is Mundan Sankar Vidhi Performed

    The 'mundan' ceremony or the tonsuring of the head is generally done in the odd months of the year, i.e. 7th, 9th, or 11th month or in the odd years. Most people perform the ‘mundan sanskar vidhi’ within the first three years of the birth but it can be done later as well. However, it is best to perform the mundan ceremony when a child is young, as later he might be stubborn and it will be difficult for you to get him ready for the head tonsuring ceremony.

    In Hinduism it is believed that performing the mundan sanskar helps a child to get rid of his or her past life and its negativity. Some say that the ritual, if performed in the third year for a boy, marks his transition to being a man, as this is the time he begins looking up to his father more. In some cultures, the ceremony has also become a way through which people engage in charity and give away wealth equal to the weight of tonsured hair.

    A baby after the mundan ceremony

    Preparing for the Tonsure Ceremony

    The first order of business is to find an auspicious date or mundan muhurat for the ritual. This will be decided by the priest. Here are a few other preparations that need to be done:
    • The items you need, especially baby clothes for the occasion, sterilised equipment for the head-shaving, and an antiseptic cream in case of cuts.
    • Decide the time and venue for the ceremony.
    • Family members play an important role in family functions. So, don't hesitate in delegating the tasks to them.
    • Create your guest list and send out invitations.
    Once this is done, you can prepare a dry run of the event. As important as adhering to ritual is, always keep your baby’s comfort in mind. You need to determine how long your baby can remain calm in such an environment. With all the on-going activities, he may feel overwhelmed. 

    During the ceremony, the priest will perform a havan or puja. He will then shave off some of the child's hair, after which the barber will shave off the remaining hair. The shaven head is finally washed with Gangajal after which a paste of turmeric and sandalwood is applied to the head. Your child's shaved hair will be offered to the Gods.

    Related: Mommy Blogger Shares What Happened When Her Baby Girl Was Taken For Head-Shaving

    Hair Growth After the Mundan Ceremony

    It is believed that after tonsuring of the head, hair growth is better. However, modern people consider this a hoax, but it is not, there is a scientific reasoning behind it. Initially, hair growth in babies is quite scattered. When a baby’s hair grows for the first time, it is weak and even the hair follicles lack strength. Once the weak hair is shaved off, strong hair follicles grow out of the roots and the hair growth is no more scattered, in fact, a baby has stronger and more dense hair.

    Tips for a Safe First Mundan Ceremony

    Getting their hair tonsured is obviously not one of the best experiences for a baby and surely he will cry and constantly move his head while the hair is being shaved off. Therefore, it is important on your part to take safety measures to ensure that the ceremony goes smooth and the baby is unharmed. So, here are some tips for a safe first mundan ceremony: 

    • Ensure that your baby is well-fed and has slept well so that he is on his best behaviour.
    • If your child is in his third year, prepare him for what’s going to happen on that day. He may feel nervous or scared as his hair is being cut. Kids tend to be attached to their hair especially if they’re a little older and may get upset during or after their first haircut ceremony. Reassure your child there’s nothing to be worried about. You could even weave a short tale about how his hair is helping others.
    • Make sure that all the tools like razors and scissors are sterilised.
    • Keep an antiseptic cream handy to apply in case of small cuts.
    • If your baby is too small, don't keep a mirror in front of him, as he may get scared.

    Your aim should be to make hair shaving for your baby as comfortable as possible. You need to keep calm too as the anxiety level of your child is bound to be higher on the day.

    If you’re mum to more than one child, you’ll have had experience of your baby's mundan ceremony. How did he or she fare?

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    Pictures from Daily Bhaskar

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