“Zindeh Ravan” Ceremony
The following is an article by Ervad Marzban Hathiram on “Zindeh Ravan” Ceremony:
The practice of Zindeh Ruvan ceremonies is very old and finds a mention in the Rivayats. Also a learned paper by Ervad Jivanji Modi on the “Disa Pothi” of Navsari priests also gives details of this exercise as it was in existence over 350 years ago. The practice of Zindeh Ruvan is a sort of prudent planning on the part of an individual to prepare for his onward journey in the spiritual realms. Our ancestors firmly believed in the efficacy of our prayers in helping the Ruvan reach its correct destination after death and the onward progress from there over the many years after death. Hence when circumstances were such that it was uncertain whether ceremonies could be done after the death of an individual, that person would take steps to have the ceremonies performed when alive. Hence the Zindeh Ruvan. For example, a spinster, or a widower without an offspring would be in serious doubt as to who would perform his after death ceremonies. Sometimes, they would “adopt” (make a “palak”) another individual and entrust him with the responsibility of doing the after death ceremonies. However, in many cases, as a measure of additional safety and prudence, many individuals would have a palak as well as perform the Zindeh Ruvan.