During the prayer, Hindus offer food, light, incense stick, Ganga water along with flowers to the Hindu deities. Flowers are undoubtedly the most beautiful element of nature. The importance of offerings flowers in Hindu puja is immense.
Flowers are the symbol of ‘peace’. From ancient times, the flower offering is being made to God while chanting mantras. This act is called ‘Pushpanjali’. These beautiful things are used for their aestheticism, and fragrance, which helps to maintain the devotion atmosphere (temple, etc.) more welcoming.
According to Hindu mythology, each God and Goddess loves different flowers. I.e., Goddess Kali likes red hibiscus, Lord Shiva prefers butterfly pea, etc.
The devotees believe that by offering flowers to the god, they will get a healthy-wealthy life.
Eventually, in Puja, ‘Pu’ means ‘Pushpam’ or flowers, and ‘Ja’ means ‘Japa’ or chanting the holy mantras, and also ‘Jalam’ or water (offering holy water to the god during Pushpanjali).
In West Bengal, during the Durga Puja, flowers play a vital role. Devotees perform ‘Mahapushpanjali’ (flowers offering) on the grand ‘Mahaasthami puja’. Furthermore, 108 lotuses are immolated to the Durga idol during puja.
Therefore, at the end of the puja, devotees convey their devotion and ask the almighty for health, wealth, and prosperity.
Feature Image Credit: Harsha K R (CC BY-SA 2.0). (free for commercial use)