Home Art & Culture Why are all Hanuman idols covered with Sindoor (Vermilion) ?

Why are all Hanuman idols covered with Sindoor (Vermilion) ?

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Hanuman

Since, childhood, we Hindus go to various temples. It is auspicious for Hindus to visit Hanuman temple on Saturday. Whenever we go to any Hanuman (Maruti) temple, we see sindoor (Vermilion) layered Hanuman idol. It is intriguing to know the reason behind it. Let’s discuss it!

Importance of Sindoor

In the blog “Why do Hindu women apply sindoor on forehead ?”, we have discussed the spiritual and scientific reasons behind Hindu women applying sindoor on in the parting line of their hair (called Maang, in Hindi) or forehead. From ancient times, Hindu women have been applying sindoor on their parting line of hair or forehead. Even there are references in Ramayana for the same.

Ramayan, as we know evolves around Lord Rama, his valour and virtuous behaviour. However, there is an amazing iteration of Valmiki Ramayan, called Adbhut Ramayan or Janaki Vijay. It spreads across  27 cantos. Scholars say that though this book looks inspired by Sage Valmiki, the language and structure suggests that it is conceived and written by some other gifted poet.

The story revolves around Sita more than it does aound Sri Ram. It seeks to establish greatness, valour, courage, strength, powers, potentials, glory and majesty of women and womanhood. These are traditionally so much adored, admired, honoured and praised in Hindus, more than men and manhood.

In Adbhut Ramayan, there is a mention of an incident, after coronation of Lord Rama at Ayodhya. One day, Hanuman was very hungry. So, he went to Sita for food. There he saw Sita applying sindoor in parting line of her hair (Maang). Out of curiosity Hanuman asked her “Ma Sita, What is this red matter that, you are applying? What happens by applying the same?” She paused for a while and then said “This is sindoor. By, me applying this, life of Lord Rama will increase and he will always be happy with me.”

Hanuman started thinking that, by Sita mata applying pinch of sindoor, if life of Lord Rama increases with happiness. Then, if he applies sindoor on his whole body, Lord Rama will be immortal.  He did exactly that. Hanuman applied sindoor on his whole body and reached Lord Rama’s court. He said to Lord Rama “Lord, always be happy!”. Looking at sindoor on Hanuman’s whole body, everyone in the court started laughing. Even, Lord Rama couldn’t control the smile. He asked Hanuman, “What have you done to yourself?”. Hanuman, then told the whole incidence to Lord Rama. By listening to that, he was pleased with Hanuman. Lord Rama said to Hanuman “ Dear Hanuman, I don’t have any other devotee, like you!” and Lord Rama offered a boon of Immortality to Hanuman. Lord Rama further offered boon to all the devotees of Hanuman, too. He said that those who will worship Hanuman, will see their difficulties go away.

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