RE: Is the Pope on crack?Jun 22nd, 2006
A son is generally preferred because he upholds the family values and ensures its continuity. A family without a male child is considered accursed. Male children are preferred for many reasons. Financially a male child is an asset. Socially he stands for the continuity and the exalted image of the family. Spiritually he helps his parents in their afterlife, by performing their funeral rites when they die and saving them from the hell of Punnama where people without sons are believed to go. Thereafter he performs the shradda ceremonies at regular intervals to ensure their well being in the heavens. The female children are excluded from participating in funeral ceremonies and are not even allowed to visit the cremation grounds. If a couple has more than one son, the elder one and the younger one would lit the funeral pyres of their father and mother respectively.