Marigold - spiritual

Marigold is one of the traditional flowers used in garlands and offerings in South Asia. Known in Sanskrit as sthulapushpa, and in Hindi as gendha, marigolds are widely used in all kinds of rites and rituals.

Mythology

Among the aboriginal tribes of Central India, known as the Gonds, legend connected the origins of marigold with the God of the Gonds, Gondmuli. He abducted the wife of another god and, in a fierce battle, the other god emerged victorious after cutting off Gondmuli's head. The wife wept for Gondmuli as she was dragged back by her husband. She dropped her hairpin and a marigold sprouted from the place it landed.

Offerings

Bright orange marigolds adorn a statue of Ganesh in a mosaic shrine.
Marigolds have been strung around this statue of Ganesh as an offering.

Marigolds are used as offerings and decoration for places of worship, at funerals, weddings and other ceremonies. During the festival of Holi, when people splash each other with coloured water and powder, yellow water is obtained by soaking and boiling the flowers and then leaving them overnight in the liquid.