And now the most awaited 8/16

It is fascinating that amongst the 7 Treasures that we saw namely Education, Intelligence, Longevity physical prowess , youthCourage and Patience, none were any material riches.  Perhaps our ancestors felt that unless a person was deserving enough, any material wealth will not be relevance to him or her.  Having blessed the newly weds with all virtues, the list of treasures now continues to include the most awaited ones.

There is a saying in Tamil “Porul illarku ivvulagam illai” to mean “This physical world is not for those who do not have money” and hence our ancestors had given importance to earning money as well.  The 8th in the list therefore is Pon or Gold (to represent the gamut of physical money).  As we are aware, in earlier times, Gold was the measure of wealth in a society. Both men and women purchased golden ornaments for various auspicious occasions

It was quite common in those days (and to some extent even now) for parents to send their newly married daughter to her in-laws’ home with some gold jewelery.  The reason for this was that gold can be pawned or sold quickly and easily to meet the needs of the family in times of crisis.  Gold is also an appreciating asset and can be a hedge against inflation as well.

It was also considered as inauspicious for a wife to remain bare necked and without any jewel.  This sentiment too added to the belief even in those days that Gold is a symbol of prosperity and abundance. (It is another matter that a spiritual day like Akshya Trithi has been hijacked by the jeweller lobby & banks to sell golden ornaments and coins)

There are more instances to show how gold was considered as sacred.  A fertile land would be called “pon viLayum bhoomi” meaning “a land where gold grows”.  We have heard that Adi Shankara sang the Kanakadhara stotram in praise of Goddess Mahalakshmi, who in turn showered golden gooseberrys (amla or nellikai) on a poor lady who gave a old gooseberry to the sanyasi with love and affection.

The newly weds need money to buy assets for themselves, take good care of the elders, provide quality education and life for their offspring and also to offer food to the poor and the guests.  Thus was the significance of Pon or Gold as the eighth treasure.


1 Comment

  1. May 1, 2011 at 2:32 am

    […] Pon (Gold) getting added to the list of the treasures which were earlier only traits, the era of […]

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