5 Dec 2011 - QA 6

Guruji, what is the significance of Mangalsutra? Why do parents say that it should never be removed after marriage? Is it okay not to wear it?

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar:

Once I was coming from Paris airport and I was boarding the flight. One lady came and asked me, showing me her ring, ‘is this necessary?’

I just looked at her and said, ‘no, not necessary, it is okay if you don’t want to have a ring.’ All that it meant to me was a ring.

She went back and sent a divorce letter to her husband. Her husband wrote me an email saying, ‘Guruji, did you tell my wife to divorce me?’

I said, ‘I never did anything like that, put her on the phone.’
She said, ‘Guruji, in the airport I asked you is it necessary to have my ring and you said no!’

That ring was her wedding ring.

So if you remove the wedding ring in the west it means you have said goodbye to your once upon a time sweetheart.

There is some sacredness in marriage. To establish that sacredness mangalsutra is worn.

Mangalsutra means that thread of auspiciousness, holding which you walk on the path of dharma, so it is not removed and it is always with you.

You don’t want auspiciousness to go away from you, that is why people attach that sentiment to it and it is worn.

At the same time there are some superstitions attached to it.
Someone has to undergo an operation and the doctor says you have to remove your jewellery and they say, ‘how can I remove my mangalsutra. I cannot remove it’.

You don’t have to go through such mental or emotional turmoil. It is just a thread or chain like any other chain.

So when it is really necessary you can remove it, it doesn’t matter. But generally sacredness is attached to it. So it is good to wear the thread.