KARWACHAUTH – belief or superstition

“Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.” 
― Mahatma Gandhi


This year November 2nd was celebrated as Karwachauth. As per Hindu culture, married women keep a day long fast on this day to pray for their husband’s long life.

Having never been a very religious person, I have always failed to see the point. How could my staying hungry give Amber a long life? Silly, I thought! But it was my first Karwachauth and I had decided to fast nonetheless, to try and fulfil my mother-in-law’s dreams and expectations.

There was however, a certain amount of uneasiness in having to go against my belief system and give in to customs that only seemed to propagate male supremacy and dominance in our society.

Help came soon after! I read an interesting article that explained one of the original reasons for this practice of fasting. It said that women folk in a household would fast for a day in order to save food for someone who may need it more. Now, this was something, I could believe in and make sense out of.

Having found my light, Amber and I started the 2nd of November by cooking a nice sumptuous meal with love and attention in the same way as we would have cooked for ourselves. We served this hot fresh food to an old lady working on a construction site and to a couple of young children begging on the traffic signal.

The smile on their faces helped us abstain from food all through the day, effortlessly. Experiencing offering our food to those who needed it more than us, added meaning to our fast and helped us practice without greed or anxiety.

What I also learnt that day is – what you gain in giving is far bigger than what is given.