To all my friends who believe in Shraadh :
Purpose of shraadh is to give respect to our ancestor who are no longer with us. With saying this, please be practical on how you do this.
It is somewhat practical in India as you will find Cow, Dog, Crow and even Brahmin (who most likely interested in making money for his family off you).
In western world, this is not practical unless you have family dog. Yes you will find Brahmin but again it will cost you almost ‘arm & leg” as his fees.
Now from what I understand is on shraadh day one offer food to cow, dog, crow understanding that our ancestor may have been in any one of this living thing. Question I have is “Can you recognize them as your an ancestor?” Can they recognize you as their past family member? If answer is yes then by all mean you should continue. If answer is no then why go through this?
This is my belief: Once soul depart body, soul is no longer belong to you as your family member. Yes soul never die,meaning it does take next life as their ‘Karma”. Doing pooja – Tarpan will not give peace to their soul. It will only please your mind, and may make few brahmin reach (as they are most greedy at taking advantage of your blindfaith).
In western world,Vaas (putting kheer-poori or other food for crow or cow or dog) is wasting food because their is no crow or cow to eat them.
If you must, feed hungry, instead of doing tarpan-pooja, donate to appropriate charity where it will be more useful for those who needs it.
One recommendation for charity: Donate to funeral home where your fund will utilize for doing cremation (Agnisanshkaar) for orphan or poor who barely can afford it.
Be practical …….be a HUMAN…… Follow HUMANITY
-સંજય ના જય શ્રી રામ