What is a car puja? A car puja is a Hindu ceremony blessing a car so as to keep it from bad influnences and to bless it in God’s name.
Why is this done? Basically, Hindus bless all implements or items to be used which are used for daily life. This is true of things like Homes, Cars, Motorized vehicles of all types, and home implements like appliances (mixers, grinders, stoves, tvs, stereos, etc.).
When is this done? It is done at the inception of the implement- like when one buys a new car, home, etc. People try to do the puja before using the implement, but this is not always done now a days.
I know you will say that this is just an innocent act or say it’s an act of faith and does no harm so why am I against such practices?
Well, to tell you the truth, I find this very view repugnant. Bless the car? God damn, why do you buy an auto insurance policy if you are blessing the car to keep away the bad influences? In other words, you don’t believe in this act yourself!!?!!
How far removed is an innocent act like Car Puja from absolute horror like this?
Mumbai, India : In a shocking case, a man allegedly raped his daughter repeatedly over a span of nine years at the behest of an occultist, who said the act would bring prosperity to the family.
The 21-year-old victim, who had been silent about the incident, mustered courage to approach the police after her businessman-father attempted to rape her 15-year-old younger sister.
Besides the father, the Mira Road police in neighbouring Thane district arrested the victim’s mother for abetting the crime and also the occultist, Hasmukh Rathod.
The 60-year-old businessman K Chavan has been sent to police custody till March 21. The court has also sent Chavan’s wife and a ‘tantrik’ to police custody till March 21st.
According to police, the husband and wife were under the influence of the occultist, who told them in July 2000 that the family would prosper if the father were to have a sexual relationship with his elder daughter, who was then 12.
I don’t know that there’s any link between the two subjects you just brought up here. One is a Hindu ritual done for safe travel, the other is not even Hindu. It’s Indian, which is where a lot of Hindus live, so I guess you might try to make a cultural argument. But I don’t believe it could be considered anywhere near common practice. I’m all for inquiry, and I believe from studying Hindu philosophy, the car puja is a way to focus positive energy into the car – and by blessing it, you raise it to a level which requires respect. Therefore, for the devout, this is an area that must now be kept clean, and operating well, and also be driven safely, particularly as you’ve invited god in, so to speak. So, ultimately, I have to disagree with you on it being crap. Also, the idea of insurance over this fails to be linked by the philosophy. Insurance in a legal issue for the replacement and repair of the car, whereas the puja encourages maintenance. Feel free to disregard my comments, but I would hope that when discussing these practices, you at least could show a level of trying to understand it before giving an opinion without consideration. To me, that reads just the same as religious fanatics claiming something is wrong because God said so. Anyhow, thanks for sparking that discussion.
Hi Jiv, thanks for your comment.
You are in exactly the same position that I was in 6 years ago!!
Giving “positive energy” to a car is harmless enough but my question is – WHY? A car is nothing but a hunk of metal. That’s all it will ever be. What you are referring to as Hindu philosophy is nothing but mindless superstition. And that is what bugs me about Hinduism.
To me you come across as an agnostic thinking a harmless car puja is no big deal. But think about it rationally – why do you want to waste your time and energy on something you KNOW will make no difference when the car has an accident regardless of how well it’s maintained or how many times you performed puja for the car?
Again, thanks for your comment!