January 3, 2016
2184 INDIA - Indian girls and women
Traditional Indian clothing greatly varies across different parts of the country and is influenced by local culture, geography and climate. Women traditionally wear Sari, Gagra Choli, Phiran, Shalwar Kameez and Gharara with Dupatta worn over head or shoulder to complete the outfit. Traditionally, the area between the eyebrows is said to be the sixth chakra, ajna, the seat of "concealed wisdom". The red dot worn on the center of the forehead, close to the eyebrow, commonly by Hindu women, is named bindi. It is known as the third eye chakra, the point or dot around which the mandala is created, representing the universe.
The nose piercing was brought in India in the 16th century by the Moghul emperors. Nose rings are associated with the Hindu religion, but they are worn also by women of other religion. They can be worn on the nostril, septum (the cartilage between the nostrils) or the bridge of the nose. Typically the left nostril is favored, because in Ayurvedic medicine a piercing in that position is thought to make childbirth easier as well as lessen the amount of menstrual pain.
For Hindus, piercings is also one way to honor Parvati, the goddess of marriage, so that many women have their noses pierced around the age of 16, which is traditionally the marriageable age. In some parts of India the nose ring is never removed once a woman is married, and thus a nose ring is often considered to be a sign of marriage, even though today unmarried women and even young girls in India may also wear nose rings as a fashion statement with no religious or traditional significance.
In diverse states of India the nose rings are made differently. The mukhuttis of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka are ornate with traditional lotus and swan designs and are mostly studded with diamonds, or the poor man’s diamond, the topaz. Rajasthani women wear the nathuri and the bhauriya. While the first is a small gold or silver ring with precious stones, the bhauriya has a slightly different design. The conventional clove-shaped nose stud is called the laung, while the small pendant suspended between the nostrils is the latkan, because of its pendulous character.
In UP the nath is adorned with two pearls and a pendulous bead to augur prosperity. The Punjabi damsel has a gold ring strung with as many as 20 to 25 motifs. It is the shikarpuri nath. In Bihar the nose stud is the chhuchhi or the laung. In Maharashtra it is the guchhedar nath, which is known for its radiant beauty with pearl decorations. Pullakku nose ring in South India (bulaag in the North) is the pendant suspended from the partition of the nostrils.
About the stamps
The stamps are part of the series Wild Flowers, about which I wrote here.
Bindi - Wikipedia
Nose Rings - Not just a Fashion Statement in India - indiamarks.com
Sent from ??? (??? / India), on 08.08.2014