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Betel Leaves in Hindu Rituals – Importance of Betel Leaves in Hindu Pujas

One of the most important puja items in Hindu rituals is the betel leaves, especially in South Indian pujas. In regional languages in India it is known as Pan, Nag Ve, Vetta or Vettila. The popular belief is that all the important deities are present in the betel leaf. It is also an important component in the Ashtamangalya items.

Elders say that –

Goddess Mahalakshmi is present in the lower tip of the betel leaf

Goddess Saraswati is present in the middle part.

Jyeshta Lakshmi is present at the portion that connects the betel leaf to the stem.

Goddess Parvati and Mangalya Devi are present on the left side.

Bhudevi or Mother Earth is present on the right side.

Sri Hari Vishnu resides inside the betel leaf.

Shiva resides on the outside of the leaf.

Shukra resides on the top portion.

Indra resides on the tip of the top portion.

Presence of Surya is felt throughout the leaf.

Kamdev – the god of love – resides on the outer portion of the leaf.

Betel leaves that have holes, that are dried and those that are torn from the middle are not used for pujas.

In South India, Dakshina to priests and elders are given by keeping a betel nut and a coin in the betel leaf. All-most all puja talis contain betel leaves and betel nuts. In some places people also use betel leaves to adorn the mouth of the Kalash pot.