Hindu Culture
Panchanmrut

Panchamrut is a religious symbol of the Hindus. Milk, (curd), (yogurt), dahi, ghee, honey and sugar candy - a mixture of these five (panch) things are necessarily present in our religious pujas. There is one conception, or faith behind all this. It is only our own development, which takes place at the conclusion of puja. The five symbols of Panchamrut become the guide or beacons of the evolution of our soul.

Milk in the panchamrut is the symbol of purity. Our lives, characters and actions should be pure. Dahi is the symbol of love. It is Dahi's quality that it makes others like itself. The intention behind giving Dahi to one's loved one who is travelling overseas is the same, i.e., do not forget your family's love for you; make others like yourself in foreign lands; let others take a leaf from your life which should be an example of Indian culture, so that the whole world can be blessed. One but cannot help admiring the foresight 'which our rishis and munis had in all this long, long ago. Ghee is prepared from milk, our bodies are nourished from ghee in our food. Its greasiness cannot be easily cleansed. The meaning of this is that your life should be such that it should (give nourishment) develop the community so that it prospers and it should not be diseased or defeated by any outside attacks. The deep meaning of being your culture's protector or defender is also evident in this symbol.

Now comes the honey. Of course, we know that it is sweet. But at the same time we know that many honeybees have collected this honey from many flowers and so from a medical point of view it is one which gives strength. So this symbol tells us to adopt these qualities in our lives. We can only face the evil forces of this Kaliyug if our society is strong. In the end we come to sugar-candy. This sugar-candy which is prepared from sugar cane is no doubt sweet. It is the symbol of sweetness or love. One may have everything in life but if love or sweetness is lacking then there is no pleasure in life. Man is a social animal and he should not forget that if he wants to live with others in the society then he should be kind in speech and only then the sweetness of life permeates in him. There is a deep meaning hidden in this symbol. Our ego should evaporate as we perform prayers to God - Prabhubhakti God's blessings are poured in our lives as a result. This is to say that we become just like sugar candy which merges with milk and makes its sweet.
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We do not reap any benefits simply by performing pujas with panchamrut but we have to understand the deep meanings behind all these symbols and practice them in our lives for the welfare of an individual, community, country and the whole world. We bow forever to these rishis and munis for such lofty ideas.