I had my parents quite nervous about whether or not I would ever get married and have a family. No one was quite sure when I would run off to the Himalayas and I know there was some heavy betting going on with high odds that I was going to do just that. Well, I am glad I didn’t run off, as there was never any need to and I am glad I decided to get married and make babies.
My wife was completely floored when I proposed. She knew that I was quite unconcerned with social norms but having children out of wedlock just meant a whole mess of legal headaches. Since we thought children were a good idea, marriage followed next. Now came the fun part. Little did we know what we were in for when we decided to ask, “What is the right way to make babies?”
Given we come from the culture that gave us the Kama Sutra, it was no surprise that the answer to our question arrived directly from ancient Hindu Scriptures, the Vedas. They came in the form of Garbhaadhaan Sanskar or the Sacrament of Conception, which is part of the Sanskar Vidhi (which outlines the 16 milestones in human life). Since we are always up for something interesting, we decided why not. It involves spirituality, love and sex–can’t go wrong with that–and oh yeah, something about making babies too.
The main reason for following this ritual is not just to have children but to have children that are outstanding. Here are the highlights of this complex process.
The Garbhaadhaan Sanskar acknowledges the role of both heredity and environment in the creation of a human being. Since conception has to do with the sperm and the ova, the first step is a process of strengthening and purification. Guys this means no sex or wasting semen for at least 40 days minimum. You need to get those swimmers in tip-top shape and build your virility and vitality. In addition, the purification also calls for a pure sattvic diet and a relaxed, happy, spiritual lifestyle. Also, no drinking and excessive late-night partying during this time. This goes for the ladies as well in order to prepare her body for a healthy pregnancy.
2. Havan (Prayers)
This was an adventure. On any day we decided to have sex to try to conceive, it is required to do a Yagna (a fire ceremony). The Havan is meant to be done before sunset and it incorporates a series of Shlokas (mantras or chants). These mantras are essentially praising the wife (which helps to set the mood), saluting natural forces, asking for a healthy pregnancy and requesting a child who would be extraordinary. Since the last part is the most important let me give some further details. Essentially, the Mantras request that the child born:
Live well for a 100 years (which is a favorite Hindu blessing and even part of Indian “Happy Birthday” songs)
Be protected from the heavens, cosmos and earth
See God in everything
Be able to comprehend the True Nature of Reality
Now all married couples know that there are days you may not want to sing the praises of your partner, but if we were planning to make a baby that night, the Havan had to be done. I was chanting, “Oh Lady, your heart is like the moon in the heaven” as she was trying her best to hold me in high regard and respect. The other challenge with the required Havan was that there were days when we were racing against the sunset to get it done. I have to confess that on more than one occasion, we did convince ourselves that our abridged version of the ritual was just as effective.
3. When to Have Sex
The Sacrament guides you on which days to have sex. Moreover, it lays out which days to have sex if you want to conceive a male child and which days to have sex if you want to conceive a female child. The texts do not guarantee this result, but they do indicate that if adhered to, it gives you a good chance to get what you want. Here are the magic numbers.
Male Child: Days 6, 8, 10, 12, 14 & 16 from commencement of menstruation.
Female Child: Days 5, 7, 9, & 15 from commencement of menstruation.
No other days are good for conception and there are a few black out days as well depending on the phase of the moon.
Now let me tell you guys, sure it sounds great having a guarantee of getting some action on a particular night. After all, we did the Havan and chanted “Oh Lady, your heart is like the moon in the heavens,” but as the days go on and you get to day 16 after not conceiving during the previous 2 menstrual cycles, sleep seems like an awfully good idea. You tend to lovingly look at each other and say, “Um, goodnight Sweetheart” and a perfectly good Havan goes wasted.
We followed all the requirements of this Sanskar trying for a male child and got our first, named Shivum. Of course he needed company and my wife, Trupti, wanted him to have a brother. It was back to more chanting about her and the moon and along came Taran, his brother. We were very happy with the results.
© 2010 – 2013, Anmol Mehta. All rights reserved.