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Offering Sari and Blouse Piece to Goddess – Oti Bharane

One of the most important offering made to Goddess in Hindu Religion is a sari and a blouse piece. This is a very important offering especially in Shakti Temples – Durga and Bhagavati Temples in South India. Red sari is usually offered to Goddess Durga. In some regions purple color sari is offered to Goddess Kali. The ritual offering sari and blouse is known as Oti Bharane in many regions.
While offering a Sari and Blouse piece – the formless Goddess Shakti is imagined by the individual to have a form – that of a female. He/She then prays to this form to help in fulfilling the desires.
The Sari that is offered to Goddess is either made of silk or cotton or any other natural material.
Sari, blouse pieces, a coconut and uncooked rice form part of the offering and they are together known as ‘Oti’ in some places.
The devotee who is making the offering stands in front of the Goddess holding the sari with open palms at chest level. The blouse piece is placed on top of the sari. Atop the blouse piece a coconut is placed with the tuft or head of coconut facing towards the Goddess. Some uncooked rice is sprinkled on top of the sari, blouse and coconut.
A devotee holds the offering in her hands and prays to the Goddess.
The sari, blouse, coconut and rice are then placed on the feet of the Goddess. Again some rice is offered on the feet of the Goddess.
After the prayer the ‘Oti’ is taken back by the devotee.
In some regions and some temples only married women are allowed to make the offering.
The sari that is offered to the Goddess is worn by the female who offered the sari as a Prasad. The coconut is broken and shared as Prasad with friends, relatives and neighbors.