Vaishali A. Patel
DORDAA BAANDHAVAA — TYING A BLACK THREAD ON A BABY
Updated: May 3, 2021
Gujarati culture is full of unique and special traditions and rituals.
As there are many different dialects of Gujarati just in Gujarat, there are different traditions in different parts of Gujarat. Gujaratis love celebrations and to support that there are traditions for everything one can think of.
This particular tradition is unique to the southern part of Gujarat, mainly near the district of Surat. As the people surrounding this area are known as Surati people. Dordaa literally means thread and baandhavaa is to tie.
This is normally performed on the 11th day after the birth, however now everyone works around the convenience of schedules and time off. The newborn baby is surrounded by his or her fois (the baby’s father’s sisters) as this particular ritual is performed by them. The baby’s wrists and ankles are wrapped with a smooth, small black thread. Some also put the thread loosely around the baby’s neck and the belly. The main reason for this is to protect the baby from evil eye. Ever wonder, who this evil eye is from? Well, it is said that there are those who can not conceive and may be jealous of the new born baby and may wish ill for the baby out of spite. There are also those who may unknowingly cast an evil eye.
This is hard to fathom for many parents these days. So do you have to believe this to perform this ritual? Not at all. Should you do it because you want to see all of your relatives you haven’t seen in a while and celebrate with them? Yes.
Following traditions with a knowledge of the why is important. You don’t necessarily have to agree with them.
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