The word pranayam is made up of two words, pran and ayama. The word pran means the vital breath or vital air. The word ayama denotes regulation or control So, pranayam means regulated or controlled breathing. The purpose of pranayam is to take full advant


Amongst Hindus, service to parents is described as the best service. Religious texts equate parents with gods. Amongst parents, the mother has been accorded a higher position than the father. The mother who gives birth and the motherland that sustains an individual are described as more outstanding than heaven.


In reality a child is born of its father and mother. Since they are instrumental in giving the body to a child they are the first gods to the child. Since the mother rears the child in her womb for nine months, bearing the pains of carrying it, and giving the child good thoughts through this period, parents are worthy of reverence.


Amongst Hindus, rendering services to parents has been described as Pitra-rin - a loan from the parents. It is the duty of every child to repay this loan or debt in adult life. Therefore, a son cannot refuse to get married. Sanyas or renunciation is also prohibited unless the son has settled this loan or debt.


A teacher has a significant role in imparting knowledge to a child. However, the mother has been specially commended as the first teacher of the child.


In the Manusmriti, 2/145, the situation has been described as:


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