How to do or perform Tulsi Vivah Festival?

Tulsi Vivah, or Tulsi Shaligram Wedding, is a popular Hindu ritual observed in the month of Kartik (October – November). Tulasi, or Tulsi, is holy basil and is an important religious symbol in Hinduism. Tulsi Vivah Puja is observed on different dates in Kartik month in different parts of India. The method of performing Tulsi Vivah Pooja also varies from community to community and depends mainly how the usual marriage ceremony is performed. Here is a step by step guide on How Tulsi Vivah is performed.

Please note that this is just to give a rough idea and the methods vary from region to region.

Tulsi Vivah is observed on the Ekadasi that falls after Diwali. Some communities perform it on the day after Ekadasi – that is the Dwadashi day. In some regions it is performed on the Kartik Purnima day. For some communities, the Tulsi Vivah rituals begin on the Ekadasi day and end on Poornima day. Or it is observed on any one of the days during the period.

Two vital things needed for the Tulsi Vivah is a Tulsi plant and Shaligram or Salagram – Stone representing Lord Vishnu. If Shaligram is not available an image or idol of Lord Krishna or Lord Vishnu is used.

Another important aspect is the food. Usually a good vegetarian meal is prepared on the day and offered to Tulsi and Lord Vishnu. The menu varies from region to region. Sweets are a must and are distributed after the Tulsi Vivah ceremony as Prasad.

Usually, a Tulsi plant which is three or more years is chosen for the puja.

Tulsi pot or Tulsi Mandap in front of the house is colored. Tulsi and the pot or the base in which Tulsi plant is standing is decorated like a bride – by applying Turmeric and Vermilion powder. Sugarcane sticks and tamarind and Amla branches are placed alongside the Tulsi pot.

The Tusli Vivah ceremony takes place in the late evening.

The Shaligram stone or idol of Krishna or Vishnu is placed next to Tulsi plant. Tulsi is the bride and Vishnu is the groom. So the placing of the Shaligram is same as the usual wedding.

Tulsi Vivah is performed with all the normal procedure followed in a Hindu wedding.

In some places, a priest goes to all the houses in the neighborhood and performs the wedding ceremony.
A Mangal Sutra is tied on the Tulsi plant.

Sometimes an elderly person in the family performs the Kanyadan – giving away of the daughter.
A cloth is tied to the Shaligram and Tusli plant.

The Mantras that are recited during a marriage ceremony are recited here.

The cloth is removed after the last mantra is recited.

People also shower flowers, rice on the newly wed couple during the marriage ceremony.

In some regions, the family that is performing the Tulsi Vivah goes round the Tusli plant and Shaligram four times and prays.

Prasad is distributed among friends and relatives.

In some regions, people undertake a fast from morning till the Tulsi Vivah puja is over.