Why is ubtana applied to the body before Abhyangasnana?


1. Narakachaturdashi

According to Shaka Samvat, Ashwin Krushna Chaturdashi and according to Vikram Samvat, Kartik Krushna Chaturdashi is called Narakachaturdashi. In earlier times in Pragjyotishapura an evil demon Narakasur inflicted severe harassment on the Deities, men and even women. He imprisoned sixteen thousand princesses and decided to marry them. On getting the news Bhagawan Srikrushna annihilated Narakasur and liberated all the princesses. Since then this day is celebrated as Narakachaturdashi.

According to the boon bestowed by Bhagawan Srikrushna on Narakasur he who takes auspicious bath (abhyangasnana) before sunrise on this day does not have to undergo the agonies of Hell.

2. Abhyangasnana

During the days of Dipavali by taking abhyangasnana a person gets 6% more benefit of sattvikta as compared to other days.

2.1 Importance of applying fragrant powder (ubatana) during Dipavali

During Dipavali period the arrival of the flows of Chaitanya containing the Absolute Fire (Tej), Water (Apa) and Air (Vayu) element is in higher proportion from the Universe. During this period the sensitiveness of the body to absorb Chaitanya is increased by applying ubatana on the body through its components. So the Chaitanya-flows of Deities’ Principles are spread in a person’s body.

2.2 Why is fragrant oil mixed in the ubatana?

The ability to attract Divine frequencies flowing in the atmosphere is higher in the fragrant oil. These frequencies contain Chaitanya and the Absolute Water element. Similarly, the ability to resist the downward-spreading Absolute Water element containing distressing frequencies is higher in it. Hence, fragrant oil is mixed in ubatana and the body is massaged with it.

Science underlying massaging the body with the ubatana mixed with oil: By massaging, the Divine Principle is attracted in the body and due to the Energy frequencies in the oil the distressing frequencies are obstructed.

Importance of massaging on the Brahmamuhurta: During the Brahmamuhurta period the entry of Divine Tej-predominant Chaitanya frequencies in the orbit of the Earth is in higher proportion. Hence, the body is massaged with fragrant oil during the Brahmamuhurta period.

2.3 Method of applying ubatana on our body by ourselves and its effects

The ubatana is raja-dominant and associated with the Absolute Fire element. It should be applied on the body in the clock-wise direction. The tip of the fingers should touch and press the body a little.

  • Forehead: Apply ubatana with the forefinger, middle finger and ring finger from the left to the right side of the forehead. After reaching the right end, lift the fingers and repeat the action. Do not move fingers from the right to the left side. The movement of the distressing vibrations collected in the void of the forehead is from left to right side. By applying the ubatana in the same direction, the distressing vibrations are activated and are disintegrated by the ubatana.
  • Temples: Place the finger tips on the temples and move them from the left to the right side and from right to left side. Apply the ubatana in a massaging manner. In this place the distressing frequencies are in a dormant state. With the friction caused by the action of applying the ubatana these frequencies are destroyed.
  • Eyelids: Apply the ubatana on the eyelids moving the hand from the nose towards the ear.
  • Nose: Apply the ubatana with the thumb and forefinger of the right hand with downward strokes and after coming down, smell the ubatana. By the action of smelling the ubatana, its fragrance enters the airsacs of the lungs. This helps destroy the black energy covering generated there.
  • Around the mouth: Apply the ubatana from below the nose to your right side up to the chin. Then from the chin move to the left back to below the nose.
  • Cheeks: Starting from the centre of both the cheeks apply ubatana with the tip of the fingers in circular motion. Due to the application of ubatana, the distressing vibrations condensed in the voids inside the cheeks are activated and they are disintegrated there itself.
  • Earlobes: Apply ubatana with the thumb and fingers on both the earlobes.
  • Ears: Holding both the ears in hand apply ubatana by moving the thumbs from below upward.
  • Neck: Apply the ubatana by moving the fingers from the midline of back of the neck and along both the sides up to the Vishuddha-chakra in front.
  • The central portion between the chest and stomach: With the right palm apply ubatana on the mid-line of chest down to the navel. By doing this, the Kundalini chakras in the body are activated. Then place both the palms in such a way that the fingers of both the hands are on the central line of the chest. Then apply ubatana by moving both the hands simultaneously from above downwards.
  • Armpit to the waist: While applying ubatana from the armpit to the waist place the thumb towards the chest and the fingers below the armpit and move the hands from above downwards.
  • Legs and arms: With the fingers apply ubatana on the legs from above downwards. Similarly apply on the arms from above downwards.
  • Ankles: Apply ubatana by encircling the ankle with the thumb and the forefinger and then making circular movements.
  • Crown of the head: Apply oil on the crown and rub with the right hand in a clock-wise direction.

2.4 Ritual of massaging body with oil (tailabhyanga) and abhyangasnana

  • Rangoli is drawn around the short wooden seat.
  • Sitting on the seat, water is sipped from the palm and released (achaman).
  • Then breathing exercises (pranayama) are done.
  • After pranayama and remembering all Deities, mother and father, utterance of time and place is done.
  • Then resolve for tailabhyangasnana is made.
  • After the resolve, the eldest lady of the house first applies vermilion to the person sitting on the short wooden seat.
  • Then fragrant oil is applied to his body.
  • Then fragrant oil and ubatana are made into a paste and applied to the entire body.
  • Then arati is done.
  • While bathing, two mugs of lukewarm water are first poured on the body.
  • Then the person taking the bath moves a twig of the prickly chaff-flower plant (Apamarga) clockwise thrice around his body.
  • A prayer is offered to the prickly chaff-flower plant for obliteration of sins.

    सीतालोष्‍ठसमायुक्‍त सकण्‍टकदलान्‍वित ।
    हर पापमपामार्ग भ्राम्‍यमाण: पुन: पुन: ।। – धर्मसिंधु

    Meaning: O prickly chaff-flower plant, consisting of mud of tilled land, thorns and leaves; obliterate my sins. Those unable to recite this verse can pray by understanding the meaning.

2.5 Why is prickly chaff-flower plant moved around the body

The prickly chaff-flower plant bestows vital energy. The colour particles in the leaves have the capacity to generate Tej and the fragrance particles to complement Oxygen. Hence, it is customary to use this plant for auspicious bath. The raja-tama particles present in and out of the body of the person are destroyed by making a circle by moving the prickly chaff-flower plant around the body. The sattvik action aids in the obliteration of the person’s sin. Hence, prickly chaff-flower plant is called ‘destroyer of sins’ (papahari).

2.6 Effects of abhyangasnana after applying ubatana mixed with oil on the body

  • With the application of the ubatana with spiritual emotion (Bhav), spirals of Bhav are generated in the person to whom the ubatana is applied.
  • Energy in the form of the Absolute Fire (Tej) Principle is attracted towards the person by applying ubatana mixed with oil.

    Spiral of this Energy is generated in the body.

    Flows and particles of Energy spread in the body of the person through this spiral of Energy.

  • Black energy in the body of the person generated by mantriks, that is, powerful negative energies of Hell, is disintegrated.

    Black covering formed on the body of the person is removed.

  • After starting the bath, pouring two mugs of warm water on body and making a circle around the body by the prickly chaff-flower, a protective sheath is generated around the body.
  • While bathing, a flow of Divine Principle is attracted in the body.

    It’s spiral is generated in the body.

  • A flow of Chaitanya is attracted in the bath water.

    A spiral of this Chaitanya is generated in the water.

    Through this spiral, a flow of Chaitanya in the form of the Absolute Water element is transmitted towards the body of the person.

    A spiral of this Chaitanya is generated in the body of the person.

    Flows of Chaitanya in the form of the Absolute Water element are emitted into the environment.

    Particles of Chaitanya in the form of fragrance are spread in the environment.

  • While bathing, a flow of anand is attracted into the body of the person.

    Spiral of anand is generated in the body of the person.

This subtle-process takes place in three steps:

  • By applying oil to the body, particles of Energy spread in the body of the person through the skin pores.
  • By applying ubatana mixed with oil, vibrations of Energy are generated in higher proportion in the body of person.
  • By abhyangasnana, vibrations of Chaitanya are generated in a higher proportion and are also emitted into the atmosphere.

Thus, by abhyangasnana, 1% benefit of Divine principle, 1.25% of anand, 3% of chaitanya and 2% benefit of Energy is gained.

Experience of a lamp lit in the body following abhyangasnana after applying oil and ubatana and realisation of the immense Energy present in the religious rituals prescribed by the Hindu Dharma: In 2007, on Narakchaturdashi day all seekers in the ashram were being given abhyangsnana. I was not experiencing any enthusiasm. Still, with determination I went to the place where ubatana mixed with fragrant oil was being applied to seekers. There a senior lady seeker applied the ubatana on my body. Then I felt as if I have become a new person. After bathing I felt as if a lamp is lit within me. Due to this spiritual experience I realised the immense Energy in the religious rituals prescribed by the Hindu Dharma. – Seeker

Seeker abided by religious conduct as prescribed by the Hindu Dharma and also gained the spiritual experience. We can learn from this and benefit by abiding by religious conduct.

3. Yamatarpan

The ritual of Yamatarpan has been recommended to avert untimely death. In this ritual tarpan is performed after reciting the following fourteen Names: 1. Yama, 2. Dharmaraja, 3. Mrutyu, 4. Antaka, 5. Vaivasvat, 6. Kala, 7. Sarvabhutakshayakara, 8. Audumbara, 9. Dadhna, 10. Nil, 11. Parameshthina, 12. Vrukodara, 13. Chitra, 14. Chitragupta.

With the recitation of the Name of each Deity, the Principle associated with that Deity takes form in the Universe and it emits frequencies of blessings towards the person performing the tarpan.

3.1 Why is Yamatarpan performed during Dipavali?

During Dipavali period the subtle Yama frequencies are attracted towards Earth from Yamaloka in higher proportion. This ritual is performed after abhyangasnana. A copper platter is used for the tarpan ritual so that the water of tarpan does not flow away along with the bathroom water. Yamatarpan is performed with wet clothes in the course of bathing itself. Thereafter the ritual of bathing is completed. However, if Yamatarpan is not possible in the bathroom, it can be performed after coming out of the bathroom also; but thereafter a bath should be taken.

3.2 Yamatarpan ritual

  • The person performing the ritual recites the names of Deities like Yama etc. after taking bath and releases water in the copper platter.
  • Thereafter if the person’s father is alive, then he recites the Names of Deities like Yama etc. and releases white consecrated rice and water.

Steps for Yamatarpan ritual to be performed by a person whose father is not alive:

  • The person whose father is not alive should put a few black sesame seeds in the water.
  • Put the Holy thread on the right shoulder.
  • Take the sesame-mixed water in the ritualistic spoon (achamani).
  • Release this water in the copper platter along the pitrutirtha, that is, the thumb.
  • While releasing water in the copper platter, recite the mantras along with the Names of Deities like Yama etc.

Further steps in the ritual are as follows:

  • Then the person stands facing the south direction. A shloka is recited ten times holding the hands up. Recitation of this shloka is also essential for the persons whose fathers are not alive.

    यमो निहन्‍ता पितृधर्मराजो वैवस्‍वतो दण्‍डधरश्‍च काल: ।
    भूताधिपो दत्तकृतानुसारी कृतान्‍त एतद्दशभिर्जपन्‍ति ।। – पूजासमुच्‍चय

    This means, we chant the ten Names of Yamadeva – 1.Yama, 2. Nihanta, 3. Pita, 4. Dharmaraja, 5. Vaivasvata, that is, son of Sun, 6. Dandadhar, 7. Kala, 8. Bhutadhip, that is, the master of living beings, 9. Dattakrutanusari, that is, One who has been assigned the task of abducting death and 10. Krutanta.

By performing Yamatarpan, the sins of the entire year are cleansed. The subtle-effects of the Yamatarpan ritual are as follows:

  • In order to avert untimely death, a person after the abhyangasnana prays to Yama and Chitragupta along with their attendants with spiritual emotion. At that time a spiral of spiritual emotion is generated around the person.
  • After the abhyangasnana, a flow of Divine Principle is attracted in the person and spirals of Divine Principle are generated.
  • Spirals of Chaitanya are generated in the person.
  • Flow of Energy of Deities like Yama etc. is attracted towards the person and spirals of Energy of those Deities are generated.
  • While Yamatarpan is offered to Deities like Yama etc., that is, consecrated rice and water are released, the flow of Energy is carried from the copper platter to the person.
  • Particles of Energy move around in the body of the person in an activated form.
  • The person is protected from the negative energies and a protective sheath is created around his body.

Through this ritual the person performs his duty towards his ancestors (Pitrudharma). The subtle process taking place at the time of recitation of shlokas at the end of the Yamatarpan ritual is as follows:

  • By facing the south direction, holding the hands up and reciting the shlokas, the Yama frequencies coming from the south direction are acquired by the person.
  • These frequencies flow in the entire body through the medium of hands. The action of holding the hands up works as an antenna.
  • Due to the flow of Yama frequencies in the body, a protective sheath is generated around the person.

At some places after the Yamatarpan ritual, a bitter fruit called Karit is crushed under the foot symbolising killing of Narakasur and its juice is applied on the tongue.

Proportion of benefit gained by a person from Yamatarpan:

  Component Proportion of
benefit (%)
1. Divine Principle 1.25
2. Chaitanya 2
3. Energy 3.25

4. Aukshan

After the ritual of Yamatarpan, new clothes are worn after taking bath and a lit lamp is waved in front of the person. During aukshan an elder lady of the house first applies vermilion and unbroken rice. Then she waves a betel nut and a gold ring together thrice in front of the person in semicircular motion. Finally she waves a lit lamp thrice in front of the person in semicircular motion.

Reason underlying the lady doing arati of her son and husband on Narakachaturdashi: The frequencies associated with dissolution emitted in the environment on Narakachaturdashi are absorbed 10 percent more by men compared to women. When the lady does arati of her son and husband on this day, they gain Energy associated with Creation from her. Due to the Energy associated with Creation gained from the woman, the frequencies of dissolution absorbed by the men become inactive. Due to this Energy the frequencies of dissolution absorbed by the men become inactive. Hence, their sojourn towards dissolution is stopped.

5. Offering meal to brahman

Offering meal to brahman on Narakachaturdashi means paying gratitude to God Who has appeared for religious mission through the medium of the brahman. Through this medium, the frequencies of Dharma spread in the Universe are nurtured. God is invoked to destroy the downward bound distressing frequencies.

6. Offering cloth

On Narakachaturdashi cloth is offered in the evening. Cloth is offered to invoke the frequencies of Deities to descend on Earth. Through this medium God is awakened to actually perform the task.

7. Yamadipadan

During Dipavali lamps are offered to Deity Yama on Dhan Trayodashi, Naraka Chaturdashi and Yamadwitiya. This protects the person from untimely death.

8. Pradoshpuja

Pradoshkala means 72 minutes after sunset. To avoid going to Hell and for getting cleansed from sins, a lamp with four wicks should be lit in the ritualistic worship performed in pradoshkala and the following shloka should be recited:

दत्तो दीपश्‍चतुर्दश्‍यां नरकप्रीतये मया ।
चतुर्वर्तिसमायुक्‍त: सर्वपापापनुत्तये ।। – लिंगपुराण

Meaning: On this Chaturdashi day, for the appeasement of the Deity of Hell and for obliteration of all sins I offer this four faced, four wicks lamp.

In this ritualistic worship, Action-energy (Kriyashakti) is ritualistically worshipped through medium of Time and is nurtured. Ritualistic worship of Shiva is also performed on this day.

9. Ritualistic worship of Shiva

For the destruction of the downward bound frequencies causing distress to society, ritualistically worshipping the destroyer form of God and paying gratitude unto Him is achieved through ritualistic worship of Shiva.

10. Reason underlying lighting lamps at various places on Narakachaturdashi

On Naraka Chaturdashi oil lamps are lit as per capacity in the morning and especially in the evening in the house, courtyard, near the Tulasi plant and other places. On Narakachaturdashi the Moon channel of the Universe is changed to the Sun channel. The environment starts becoming charged with polluted frequencies from the earlier night itself. The negative energies from Hell take advantage of this and emit frequencies from Hell containing distressing sound. In order to restrict these frequencies lamps are lit at various places. Frequencies containing Tej Principle emitted from the lamps disintegrate the distressing raja-tama particles in the atmosphere. This process helps in the destruction of the protective sheath of the negative energies. This is known as destruction of negative energies with the help of lamps. Naraka Chaturdashi has special importance from the perspective of the day of disintegration of negative energies from Hell.

11. Importance of actions done on Narakachaturdashi as per path of Devotion

  Action Importance (%)
1. Offering meal to brahman 20
2. Offering cloth 10
3. Offering lamp 20
4. Pradoshpuja 20
5. Shiv puja 30
  Total 100

This table clarifies why the various religious actions on Narakachaturdashi are prescribed.

Implied meaning of Narakachaturdashi as explained by a Saint : “On this day, one should apply ubatan before sunrise, remove the dirt on the body and have a bath. One should clean the premises and decorate it with rangoli. However, all this is external. The environment in society is already polluted due to evil thoughts. In this situation, the society can be cleansed only with the broom of knowledge. In short, Narakachaturdashi says ‘Destroy the evil attitude from its roots. Remove the foul smell, only then we can celebrate Dipawali in its true sense’. Bhagawan Srikrushna slayed Narakasur. This implies, ‘Victory of good energy over evil energy’. Every person should reduce his demonic and destructive attitudes and replace it with Divine qualities. Further this will influence the society and later the nation.”

To celebrate Narakachaturdashi in its true form as advised by H.H. Maharaj, it is important to discard the evil thoughts from our minds and society.



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