After the conception was ascertained, the
child in the womb was consecrated by the Samsk?ra named Pumsavana.
By Pumsavana was generally understood “that ritethrough which a
male child was produced.” vedic hymns recited on this occasion
mention Puman or Putra ( a male) and favor the birth of son. The
word Pumsavana is rendered into English by “a rite quickening a
male child.” पुमान् प्रसूयतॆ येन कर्मणा तत्पुंसवनम्
During the Gruhyasũtra the Pumsavana Samsk?ra was performed in the third orforth month of pregnancy or even later on the day when the moon was on a maleconstellation, on Tishya particularly. The pregnant woman was required to fast on thatday. After bath she put on new cloths. Then in the night the prouts of the banyan treewere pounded and juice was inserted in to the right nostril of the women with verses
beginning with “Hinraņyagarbha” etc. According to some Gruhyasũtr?s Kusakantaka and S?malata were also to be pounded with the above. If the father desired that his son should be Viryav?n or virile, he should place a dish of water on the lap of the mother and touching her stomach reciting the verse “ Suparn?si”. सवनम् स्पन्दते शिशौ
The Dharmasũtras and Smritĭs do not add any think to the ritual prayers. The Pray?g?s and the Padhatĭs slowly draw upon the Gruhyas?tras of the vedic school they follow with the only addition of the “M?trup?j?s” and ?bhyudayika Šr?dha”. पुण्याहम् वाचयित्वा आभ्युदयिकं क्रुत्वा रक्षांबध्वा
The Smritĭs deal with the proper time when the Samsk?ra should be performed.According to Manu the Y?gnyavalkya it should be performed before the fetus begins tomove in the womb. Sh?nkha followed them. Bruhaspati prescribes the move after themovement. The J?takarnya and Sounaka say it should be performed in the third month of pregnancy after conception becomes manifest.
The times of performance ranged from the second to the eighth month of pregnancy. It was due to the fact that that the symptoms of conception became visible in the case of different woman in different months. The Kul?ch?ra of family custom was also responsible for the first pregnancy, the Samsk?ra should be performed if the third month. In the case of woman who have already given birth to children it should be performed in the fourth, sixth or even in the eighth month of pregnancy. In the first conception, the symptoms show themselves earlier than in the others. That is why later periods are prescribed in the second case. सीमन्तॊन्नयनं प्रथमे गर्भे चतुर्थे मासि
ब्राह्मणानां भोजयित्वा आशिषॊवाचयित्वा
The significance of the Samsk?ra consisted in its main features. It should be performed when the moon was on a male constellation. This time was regarded as favorable for producing a male issue. Inserting the juice of the banyan tree was a device meant for preventing abortion and ensuring the birth of a male child. In the opinion of Šušruta the Banayan tree has got the properties of removing all kinds of troubles during pregnancy e.g., excess of bile, burning etc. “having pounded with milk any of these herbs,
Sulakshmana Bataššunga, Sahadĕvi and Višvedĕva, one should inserted tree of four drops of juice in the right nostril of the pregnant woman for the birth of a son. She should not spit the juice out. Insertion of medicine into nostrils is a common thing in the Hindu systems of treatment. Therefore, it’s evident that the ritual prescribing it was undoubtedly founded on the medical experience of the people. Putting a dish of water on the lap was a symbolical performance. A pot full of water denoted life and spirit in the taking every care by the expectant mother, so that the foetus should be healthy and strong in the womb and abortion may not take place. The hymn suparna etc”. or “of beautiful wings”
expressed the wish that a handsome child should be born त्रॆण्याशलल्यात्रिभिर्दर्भ पुंजीलै: शलाल्लुग्लफ्सेनेत्यूर्ध्वग्ं सीमन्तमुन्नयति