Thook Bolcha is a sacred lamp for Kodavas.
Thook Bolcha is a lamp which is hung with the help of a chain on the wall. It is also known as “Nellakki Bolcha“. Basically when the rituals start, the first and foremost thing is they pray to god and sprinkle the rice to Nellakki Bolcha.
Kodavas are basically ancestor and nature worshippers. Every ancestral home (ainmane) invariably has a kaimada, a small shrine nearby, where prayers to ancestors are offered. The ancestral homes face the east, and Kodavas start their daily chores by opening the main door of the house and saluting the sun. Idol worship is non-existent in kodavas.
A brass lamp (Thook bolcha) or hanging lamp is lit, both at dawn and dusk, to invoke the blessings of the ancestors. The lamp is kept in the nellakki nadu bade.
The sacred area around the Thook Bolcha is empty and no idol or photograph adorns the space. The same goes for the space where meedi (offerings to the ancestors) is kept. Most of the important decisions are solemnised in front of the Thook Bolcha. However, in recent years, in some ainmanes, framed photos of Hindu gods are kept in these sacred spaces.
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