What are the presiding deities and results of Shraddha?

Contents –


1. Presiding deities of Shraddha

1.1 Pururav-Aardrav and Dhurilochan

Pururav-Aardrav and Dhurilochan are deities of ancestors’ souls. They are referenced in the ritual of Shraddha.

1.2. Vasu-Rudra-Aditya

1.‘Shraddha is associated with the benevolent deities Vasu, Rudra and Aditya of the ancestors’ souls. The mantras chanted during the Shraddha and the rites performed enables one to connect to these deities.’ (6)  

2. The deceased person for whom the ritual of Shraddha is being performed, is considered as a follower of Vasu, his parents are considered as followers of Rudra and his grand parents are considered as followers of Aditya. Therefore during Shraddha, the names of father, grandfather and great grandfather (or mother, grandmother and great grandmother) are pronounced as representatives of Vasu-Rudra-Aditya respectively.

2. Types of Shraddha

2.1 Main and commonly known type

Matsya Puran mentions ‘नित्यं नैमित्तिकं काम्यं त्रिविध श्राद्ध मुख्यते ।’, meaning, primarily there are three types of Shraddha – one performed daily, periodically and with purpose (Kamya). In addition to these, Yamasmruti defines Nandi Shraddha and Parvan Shraddha as additional main types.

2.1.1 Daily Shraddha

The ritual of Shraddha performed daily is known as Daily Shraddha. This Shraddha can be performed just by offering water or sesame seeds to deceased ancestors.

2.1.2 Periodic Shraddha

The shraddha performed for deceased ancestors with a single objective and other such types fall under periodic Shraddha.

2.1.3 Purpose oriented (Kamya) Shraddha

Shraddha performed for achieving a specific objective is termed as purpose oriented (Kamya) Shraddha.

From the point of view of deriving fruitful result, if the Shraddha is performed on a specific day, date (as per Hindu calendar) and taking into consideration the position of stars (nakshatra), then the desired result is achieved. The details are given below:

1. Day and the derived result of the Shraddha

2. Date (as per Hindu calendar) and the derived result of the Shraddha

Date of performing Shraddha Result derived from the Shraddha
First day in Hindu Lunar fortnight Gaining a good fowl and being able to give birth to a healthy baby boy.
Second day in Hindu Lunar fortnight Conceiving a baby girl.
Third day in Hindu Lunar fortnight Acquiring a horse, acquiring fame
Fourth day in Hindu Lunar fortnight Acquiring a lot of inferior animals
Fifth day in Hindu Lunar fortnight Having a lot of good looking male children
Sixth day in Hindu Lunar fortnight Conceiving bright male child, getting success in gambling.
Seventh day in Hindu Lunar fortnight Acquiring a farm or land
Eighth day in Hindu Lunar fortnight Obtaining success in business
Ninth day in Hindu Lunar fortnight Acquiring animals like horses
Tenth day in Hindu Lunar fortnight Expansion of cattle, acquiring animals with two humps
Eleventh day in Hindu Lunar fortnight Acquiring utensils, clothes and a scholar male child.
Twelfth day in Hindu Lunar fortnight Acquiring gold, silver etc.
Thirteenth day in Hindu Lunar fortnight Gaining superiority within the community
Fourteenth day in Hindu Lunar fortnight The persons, who have died due to the stroke of a weapon or on a battlefield, get momentum to attain a higher sub-plane. Gaining good citizens.
Full moon / no moon night Fulfillment of all wishes

Note 1: Except full moon night, all other dates that belong to the dark fortnight and corresponding dates in dark fortnight of the month of Bhadrapad, bestow special benefit.

1. Bhimashtami Shraddha: If one is not able to conceive or is facing problems of abortion, then for the well being of the fetus, Shraddha is performed or offering of water is made to Bhishmacharya, on the eighth day of the bright fortnight (Bhimashtami) in the Hindu calendar month of Magh.

3. Position of stars and the derived result of the Shraddha

Position of star while performing Shraddha Result derived from the Shraddha
Kruttika Acquiring a heavenly abode for oneself and ones son.
Rohini Conceiving male child
Mruga Acquiring radiance of Brahman (Brahmatej)
Aardra Providing momentum to the soul of an evildoer, action transformed into supernatural power.
Punarvasu Obtaining wealth or land
Pushya Improvement in strength
Ashlesha Conceiving a male child with brave character, fulfillment of a wish
Magha Gaining superiority within the community, a long married life
Purva Good luck, conceiving a male child, elimination of sin
Uttara Good luck, conceiving a male child, elimination of sin
Hasta Fulfillment of a wish, gaining superiority within the community
Chitra Conceiving a handsome male child, conceiving ample male children
Swati Earning profit in business, earning success.
Vishakha Conceiving ample male children, acquiring gold
Anuradha Acquiring a kingdom (attaining position of minister etc), acquiring friends
Jyeshtha Acquiring superiority, authority, wealth and self-confidence, acquiring a kingdom
Mula Obtaining good health, acquiring a farm or land
Purvashadha Achieving good fame, successful journey up to the sea limit
Uttarashada Getting relieved from grievances, fulfillment of all wishes, achieving good hearing ability
Shravan Achieving best progress in subtle plane, superiority
Ghanishtha Acquiring kingdom (attaining position of minister etc), fulfillment of all wishes
Shavataraka Achieving supernatural powers in medical practice, acquiring metal other than gold and silver.
Purvabhadrapada Acquiring a flock of sheep or lamb, acquiring metal other than gold and silver.
Uttarabhadrapada Acquiring cattle, acquiring sanctified and good premises
Revati Acquiring utensils and clothes, acquiring cattle
Ashwini Acquiring horses
Bharni Acquiring a long life

Note 1: When an evildoer dies and Shraddha is performed for him at the time of Aadra star, for imparting momentum to its soul, the desired benefit can be derived.

Special note: In the table given in point 2 and 3, multiple benefits are indicated for a single date or star position. These are specified based on references obtained from different books.

2.1.4 Nandi Shraddha

The ritual of Shraddha performed during the start of any joyous ceremony and performance of any of the 16 religious rites, and recitation of specific mantras for success of the ceremony is called Nandi Shraddha. In this ritual Satyavasu (or kratudaksha) are the vishve deities and the father-grandfather-great grandfather, mother-grandmother (mother’s mother) – great grandmother (mother’s grandmother) and mother- grandmother (mother’s mother-in-law)-great grandmother (mother-in-law of mother’s mother-in-law) are invoked.

1. Karmanga Shraddha: This Shraddha is performed during the religious ritual of Garbhadhan.

2. Vruddhi Shraddha: Shraddha performed at the time of birth of a baby.

2.1.5 Parvan Shraddha

The Pindapitruyagna (sacrificial fires related to deceased ancestors) mentioned in the Shrout lineage is to be performed by a Sagnik (one who performs the ritual of Agnihotra). Alternative to this is the Parvan Shraddha mentioned in the Gruhya sutras. Once the deceased ancestors get listed as Parvans, then this shraddha is performed for them. (Detailed information on Parvan is presented under the heading ‘Terminology of Shraddha’ and in point ‘3 B’ of volume 2.) Ekparvan (single Parvan), dviparvan (double Parvan), triparvan (triple Parvan) are the three varieties of this shraddha. Mahalay Shraddha and Tirtha Shraddha are the types of Parvan Shraddha.

1. Mahalay Shraddha (fortnightly): It is a Parvan Shraddha performed starting from the eleventh day of dark fortnight of Bhadrapad (Hindu calendar month) till the no moon night.

2. Tirtha Shraddha: The ritual of shraddha performed at Holy places like Prayag or at the banks of a sacred river is termed as Tirtha Shraddha. While performing Tirtha Shraddha, all the Parvans of Mahalay are invoked.

2.2. Other types

Apart from the main types mentioned above there are 96 types of Shraddha namely, 12 no moon nights, 4 eras, 14 manvantars, 12 sankrants, 12 vaidhruti, 12 vyatipat, 15 mahalays, 5 first, 5 ashtak and 5 anvashtake. (Detailed information about these is present in the books related to science of Dharma.)

Brief information about few of the other types of Shraddha

2.2.1. Goshthi Shraddha

The Shraddha performed by the group of priests (Brahmins) and scholars at a holy place with the intention that, ‘Deceased ancestors’ souls should get satisfied and let happiness and prosperity preside’, or while discussing the topic of Shraddha, if one gets inspired all of a sudden and performs Shraddha, then such Shraddha is termed as Goshthi Shraddha.

2.2.2 Shuddhi Shraddha

Offering food to priests (Brahmins) for acquiring purity is called as Shuddhi Shraddha. This is the ‘undergoing of punishment’ part of Shraddha.

2.3.3 Pushti Shraddha

Shraddha performed for increasing physical strength and prosperity is called as Pushti Shraddha.

2.2.4 Ghruta Shraddha (Yatra Shraddha)

Shraddha performed using ghee (clarified butter), in remembrance of deceased ancestors, before embarking on a journey to holy places with the objective of completing the journey without any obstacles is called Ghruta Shraddha.

2.2.5 Dadhi Shraddha

Shraddha performed after returning from a journey to holy places is termed as Dadhi Shraddha.

2.2.6. Ashtaka Shraddha

Shraddha performed on 8th day of the bright fortnight of the Hindu calendar mont. Ashtaka means the 8th day of bright fortnight of any Hindu calendar month. During the era of Vedas, the Ashtaka Shraddha used to be performed specifically on the 8th day of bright fortnight of Margashirsha, Poush, Magh and Falgun months. It was a practice to offer vegetables, meat, bondas, sesame seeds, honey, rice kheer, fruits and underground vegetables to deceased ancestors. Vishvedev, Fire (Agni), Sun, Prajapati, Ratri, Stars (nakshatra), season (rutu) etc. were considered as deities of Shraddha.

2.2.7. Daivik Shraddha

Shraddha performed with the objective of obtaining the grace of God is termed as Daivik Shraddha.

2.2.8. Hiranya Shraddha

This Shraddha is performed without offering food and only by offering money (dakshina) to the priests (Brahmins). If food is in scarcity, then gold, equivalent to four times the cost of the food grains, should be offered.

2.2.9. Hasta Shraddha

Shraddha performed by offering food to the priests (Brahmins) designated for Shraddha. If cooked food is not available then the Shraddha is performed by offering money or dry food grains. (7)

2.2.10. Aatma Shraddha

Those people who do not have children or whose children are atheists, they should perform Shraddha for themselves when they are alive. The rites for such Shraddha are explained in the science of spirituality.

Even though various types of Shraddha are mentioned above, based on the calendar days, the Shraddha performed for a dead person from the first day to the eleventh day, monthly shraddha, Sapindikaran Shraddha, Shraddha performed on one-year completion, Shraddha performed every year from the second year and Mahalay Shraddha are the only ones that are commonly practiced.

Reference: Shraddha (importance and scientific explanation) – Volume 1

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What are three historically established phases of Shraddha?

Contents

1. Information related to the term ‘Shraddha

2. ‘Shraddha‘ means not just ‘remembering ancestors with a sense of gratitude’, but is also a ritual to be performed

3. Historical details of the ritual of Shraddha 

4. Three historically established phases of Shraddha and its nature in the current era


1. Information related to the term ‘Shraddha

A. Meaning and Scope

The term ‘Shraddha‘ has originated from ‘Shraddhaa‘ (faith). It is impossible to repay the various favors, which our deceased forefathers have done for us. The ritual performed for them with complete faith is known as Shraddha.

B: Definition

The definition of Shraddha as given in the ‘Shraddha‘ chapter within the Brahmapuran Holy text is as follows:

देशे काले च पात्रे च श्रद्धया विधिना च यत् ।
पितृनुद्दिश्य विप्रेभ्यो दत्तं श्राद्धमुदाहृत् ।। – ब्रह्मपुराण

Meaning: The offerings (food etc.) made to the brahmins (priests) with the intension being received by the deceased ancestors, after taking into account the aptness of country, time period and place and with complete faith and abiding by all the rules is known as Shraddha.

C: Associated words

Shraddhattva Pinda, Pitru Puja (ritualistic worship of deceased ancestors), Pitru Yagna (sacrificial fires performed for deceased ancestors)

2. ‘Shraddha‘ means not just ‘remembering ancestors with a sense of gratitude’, but is also a ritual to be performed.

3. Historical details of the ritual of Shraddha

A. The original concept of performing the ritual of Shraddha was concieved by Sage Atri, the son of Lord Brahma. Sage Atri narrated the ritual of Shraddha as laid down by Lord Brahma to Nimi from his lineage. This established ritual has continued even today.

B. Manu was the first one to perform the ritual of Shraddha. Hence he is called the deity of Shraddha (2).

C. After Lord Ram, Goddess Sita and Lakshman left for their stay in forest, Bharat met them in the forest and apprised them about the death of their father. The epic Ramayana has a mention that Lord Rama later performed the ritual of Shraddha for His deceased father at an appropriate time.

4. Three historically established phases of Shraddha and its nature in the current era

A. Agnoukaran

During the era of Rugveda, deceased ancestors were worshipped by offering Samidha (a kind of wooden stick) and Pinda (a rice bowl) to the sacrificial fire.

B. Pindadaan (worship of Pinda)

The process for Pindadaan is mentioned in the holy scripts of Yajurveda, Bramhane, Shrout and Gruhya sutra. The ritual of Pindadaan was put into practice during the period of Guhya sutra.

The information regarding the time period when the worship of Pinda started is documented in the holy text Mahabharata (Shantiparva 12.3.345) – God Varaha, incarnation of Lord Vishnu, introduced Shraddha to the entire world. He created three Pindas from His molar tooth and placed it on a Darbha (dried grass twig) towards the southern direction. Lord Varaha advised ‘Let the 3 Pindas be considered as a representation of the father, grandfather and great grandfather’ and then He vanished after performing the ritualistic worship of the Pindas using sesame seeds in a scientific manner. Thus began the worship of Pinda for deceased ancestors as per the guidance of Lord Varaha.

C. Offering food to priests (Brahmins)

During the post Gruhya sutra and Shruti-Smruti period, offering food to priests (Brahmins) was considered mandatory and became an important part of the ritual of Shraddha.

D. All the three phases together

In the current era, all the three phases mentioned above are included within the ‘ParvanShraddha. The science of Dharma prescribes that householders should perform the ritual of Shraddha as their duty.

Reference: Shraddha (importance and scientific explanation) – Volume 1

 

Sankashtachaturthi vrat

Contents


1. Sankashtachaturthi vrat

1.1 Importance of Chaturthi tithi

Sri Ganeshji is Vighnesha, that is, One who overcomes the dangers. He is Sidhhidata, that is, One who bestows the desired supernatural power. He is Chintamani, that is, One who bestows faith, intellect and Knowledge. He is Mangalmurti, that is, One who makes everything auspicious (mangal).

Molecules or subtle particles of Nitrogen, Oxygen etc. are present in the environment. Similarly, subtlest Ganesh Principle is present in the entire Universe. As compared to other days, on the day of Chaturthi tithi of every month, Ganesh Principle is 100 times more active on Earth. Chaturthi falling in the bright (Shukla) and dark (Krushna) fortnight of the month is known as ‘Vinayaki’ and ‘SankashtiChaturthi respectively.

Vinayaki Chaturthi: Fast is observed throughout the day of Vinayaki Chaturthi. ‘Sri Sidhhivinayak’ is the Deity of this vrat.

Sankashti Chaturthi: Chaturthi falling in the dark fortnight is known as ‘Sankashti’. This vrat is observed to be free of dangers. Deity of this vrat is Sri Vighnavinayak Ganeshji.

    We are surrounded by 360 types of subtle frequencies coming from Earth. During the dark fortnight, these 360 types of frequencies are active in higher proportion. Due to this, the flow of that part of the Divine Consciousness that governs the functioning of the mind and body (Chetanashakti) through the channels (nadis) in the body is blocked. To eradicate this danger, Sri Ganeshji is worshipped through the medium of Sankashti Chaturthi vrat. Sri Ganeshji controls these frequencies. The distress caused by these frequencies is overcome due to His worship.

Angaraki Chaturthi: Chaturthi falling on Tuesdays is known as Angaraki Chaturthi. ‘Angar’ means planet Mars. Sri Ganeshji has control over Earth as well as on Mars. Colour of Sri Ganeshji and planet Mars is also identical. Therefore, the fruit of observing ‘Angaraki Vinayaki’ and ‘Angaraki Sankashti’ is equal to the fruit of Vinayaki or Sankashti respectively observed throughout the year. Angaraki vrat is not observed for day and night like the other two vrats. This vrat is observed for 5 prahars; 4 prahars of the day and 1 prahar of the night. Having a meal after rising of the moon is an important aspect of the vrat and does not mean the completion of the vrat. Rarely will one find a person who has not heard about the Sankashtachaturthi vrat.

1.2 The environment around Sri Ganesh temples on the day of Sankashtachaturthi

Sri Ganesh temples at various places look different than on other days. On this day, vendors selling substances like flowers, Durva etc. and people crowding for darshan is a common sight. Some Ganesh temples have queues of people from every strata of society come for darshan. Men, women, children, elderly people are all seen in the queue. The presence of young people is also significant. Without any fuss and publicity, social unity and integration is seen based merely on spiritual emotion of the faithful. The sattvikta, joy and serenity evident in any Ganesh temple, be it famous or average, on Sankashtachaturthi day is extraordinary. Many of us must have visited and experienced the sattvikta, serenity and bliss evident in these temples on Sankashtachaturthi day. Despite the crowd and inconveniences, we try to remain focused on the contemplation of God. The crowd seen in all the temples of Sri Ganeshji on the day of Sankashtachaturthi, is a symbol of the faith of people.

1.3 Actions to be performed in Sankashtachaturthi vrat

  • Fasting throughout the day
  • Ritualistic worship of Sri Ganeshji in the evening
  • Darshan of the moon
  • Worship of the moon (Chandrapujan)
  • Vratangabhojan

Along with this, as a way of worship, people having faith in Sri Ganeshji perform various actions as per their ability like:

  • Going for darshan to the temple on foot or going on bare feet.
  • Listening to or reciting Sri Mudgalapurana, Sri Ganeshsahasranamavali etc..
  • Reciting the stotras
  • Chanting etc.

Daily routine of the faithful associated with observing Sankashtachaturthi vrat: My entire family observes Sankashti vrat. We also observe fast. On the day of Sankashti I get up early in the morning and recite Atharvashirsha 21 times and then ritualistically worship Sri Ganeshji. I complete the daily ritualistic worship by 7 to 7.30 a.m. This helps the children to do the ritualistic worship and proceed for their daily activities. – Sadhak

Devotion increases, thoughts become pure and many experience peace of mind after faithfully observing this vrat on the day of Sankashtachaturthi.

1.4 The steps in the vrat of Sankashtachaturthi (vratavidhan)

In order to vanquish the adversities, the worship of Sri Ganeshji, the One who vanquishes the obstacles has been recommended on the day of sankashti. Sometimes this tithi falls on two days. Then, the tithi on which the moon rises is the day of the vrat.

The main parts of the vrat are the fasting, the ritualistic worship of the Deity concerned, the recitation of stotra etc. In the morning of the sankashti, after bathing and sandhya, the usual worship of the Deity is performed. Some people offer red flowers and Durva at this time itself and worship Sri Ganeshji.

On this day the recitation of Sankashtanashan stotra, Sri Ganapati Atharvashirsha, Brahmanaspatisukta etc. associated with Sri Ganeshji, the chanting of the Name of Sri Ganeshji, His darshan etc. assume importance. The benefit of any vrat is acquired only when it is done with the body, speech and mind.

The fasting associated with the Sankashtachaturthi vrat: On the day of Sankashtachaturthi, if possible, one should live without food. If at all food is required, only sattvik diet like water, fruit, roots, milk etc. should be consumed.

1.5 The evening worship of Sri Ganeshji

In the Sankashtachaturthi vrat, one takes a bath in the evening and arranges the ritualistic worship of Sri Ganeshji with sixteen substances. The idol of Sri Ganeshji used in the daily worship is installed for the worship. If there is no idol in the daily worship, a betel nut is kept on a mound of rice as a symbol of Sri Ganeshji and it is ritualistically worshipped. The red Hibiscus and Durva are kept along with the leaves of various other plants.

The worship is begun with sipping of water from the palm (achaman), pranayam and making a resolve. Thereafter the worshipper purifies his body along with all the substances to be used in the worship by sprinkling water on them.

The Deity of Varun invoked in the water in the copper pitcher (kalash) is worshipped and thereafter Sri Ganeshji is invoked. The idol of Sri Ganeshji is kept in a copper platter. Water is released on the feet of this idol and arghya and achaman are offered.

After this, the idol of Sri Ganeshji is given panchamrut snan, that is, a bath with milk, curd, ghee, honey and sugar. Thereafter a bath is given with water mixed with sandalwood paste. Now the recitation of Sri Ganapati Atharvashirsha is done and the idol of Sri Ganeshji is consecrated with water.

After consecration with water, the idol is washed with pure water, wiped with a cloth and kept on the seat. Now Sri Ganeshji is offered cotton clothes. Thereafter a Holy thread is offered. After this, red sandalwood paste, turmeric powder and vermilion are offered. Scent is also offered.

The red Hibiscus flowers are especially offered to Sri Ganeshji. After offering the flowers, the idol of Sri Ganeshji is worshipped with various types of leaves. In this, along with the Durva, the leaves of twenty-one plants like Malati, Bhrungaraj, Ber, Jasmine, Ashok, Shami, Kadamba, Pomegranate etc. are offered.

After the worship with leaves, a Durva is offered along with each of the Names of Sri Ganeshji as given in the booklet of Sri Ganeshasahasranamavali. If it is not possible to offer one thousand Durva, one can offer one hundred Durva and if even that is not possible, at least twenty one Durva are offered.

In order to gain more benefit of the Ganesh Principle, modak which attract this Principle is offered as a Holy sacrament (naivedya). If it is not possible to prepare modak, jaggery and dry coconut should be offered. Arati of Sri Ganeshji is performed. After the worship of Sri Ganeshji, the priest is offered the modak. To complete the offering, money as dakshina along with betel leaf, betel nut and dry coconut is offered.

The mantra of Sri Ganeshji is recited 21 times, the consecrated rice is offered for immersion of Varun Deity and the darshan of the moon is taken.

1.6 The worship of the moon on Sankashtachaturthi

The worship of the moon assumes special importance in the Sankashtachaturthi vrat. If possible, one should go out of the house and take darshan of the moon. The substances are offered to the moon in a copper platter. If for some reason the moon is not visible in the sky, an image of the moon is made as a symbol and worshipped. If this is not possible, a picture of the moon is drawn with rangoli on a wooden seat or a stool and it is worshipped. Sandalwood paste and flowers are offered to the moon. Incense stick and lamp are waved in front of it. Now Holy sacrament (naivedya) is offered to the moon.

After the worship of the moon, arghya is offered three times – once for the Chaturthi tithi, once for Mahaganapati and thereafter once for sankashtanashan Sri Ganeshji. In the end the fourth arghya is offered to the moon. After praying for the welfare of all, the worship is concluded.

1.7 Vratangabhojan of Sankashtachaturthi

The host can consume food after the evening worship of Sri Ganeshji and the worship of the moon. The host should consume food prepared as the Holy sacrament as a prasad. It is the ritual of the Sankashtachaturthi vrat to take meals at the time of moon rise. Hence, this meal is not for breaking the fast, but as a part of the vrat, that is, Vratangabhojan.

The meaning of consuming a meal means consuming cooked rice along with other items of food. The reason for consuming rice is that the Scriptures have given the status of ‘anna’, that is, food, only to rice.

 

Why does a sister perform aukshan to brother on Yamadwitiya?

Contents


1. Historical importance of Kartik Shukla Pratipada

This is the day of beginning of calculation of time as per Vikram Samvat. In the first century BC, Shakas attacked Bharat. The King of present Ujjain, King Vikramaditya, trained the youth of Malwa in martial arts. He attacked Shakas and drove them out of the country and established a kingdom based on religion. As a symbol of the victory, Emperor Vikramaditya started count of time named Vikram Samvat. This is prevalent since 57 B.C. This shows how ancient is the concept of time calculation in the Bharatiya culture. Kartik Shukla Pratipada is the half day of the three and half auspicious days falling within an year. This is one of its importance.

2. Rituals performed on Kartik Shukla Pratipada

2.1 Balipujan

Balipratipada is celebrated on Kartik Shukla Pratipada. On this day Bhagawan Sri Vishnu sent the King of demons, Bali, to Hell and curbed the loss to the Universe due to his misplaced philantrophy. Due to the excessive philanthropy of King Bali, wealth was acquired by ineligible people. This adversely affected the world. Then, Sri Vishnu incarnated as Vamana and requested land enough to place His three feet. Then Vamanadeva assumed expansive form and covered entire Earth and outer space in two feet. King Bali offered Him his own head to place His third foot. Before sending King Bali to Hell, Vamanadeva graced him with a boon. King Bali asked for three days of his kingdom on Earth. These three days are – Kartik Krushna Chaturdashi, Dipavali Amavasya and Pratipada.

Kingdom of Bali: As per the religious Scriptures, in the kingdom of Bali, people should enjoy as per their wish barring the actions forbidden by the Scriptures. The actions forbidden by the Scripures are consuming non-vegetarian food, alcoholic drinks and company of inappropriate women. However, today we see an excess of this. On these days people burst firecrackers in excess and cause loss too national property. Some people engage in gambling. Most people keep up till late in the night eating, watching movies, plays etc.

Method of celebrating Balipratipada: On Balipratipada, married women do arati of their husband after abhyangsnan. In the afternoon meal various dishes are made. Some people worship the image of King Bali along with his wife, Vindhyavali. The objective of this worship is that King Bali should not cause distress to people on Earth with his power and so that he pacifies the other negative energies.

2.2 Govardhanapujan

On this day Srikrushna started the worship of Govardhana in place of that of Indra. Govardhanapujan is done in memory of this. Scriptures prescribe that a summit of Govardhana mountain be done. It should be decorated with trees and flowers. However, in many places it is made in human form and decorated with flowers. Following prayer is offered:

गोवर्धन धराधार गोकुलत्राणकारक ।
विष्‍णुवाहुकृतोछ्राय गवां कोटिप्रदो भव ।। – धर्मसिंधु

Meaning: O, Govardhana, Who supports Earth! You are the protector of Gokul. Bhagawan Srikrushna had lifted You on His arms. Bestow crores of cows on me.

After Govardhanapujan cows are worshipped. Cow is considered to be Sri Lakshmi. After worshipping her a prayer is offered for obliteration of sins. In the Dharmasindhu, prayer is offered to the cow with the following verse:

लक्ष्‍मीर्या लोकपालानां धेनुरूपेण संस्‍थिता ।
घृतं वहति यज्ञार्थे मम पापं व्‍यपोहतु ।। – धर्मसिंधु

Meaning: O cow, who is Lakshmi Herself in the form of a cow and who bestows ghee for yadnyas, obliterate my sins.

In some places picture of Govardhana along with Bhagawan Srikrushna, Gopal, Indra and cow with calf is drawn and worshipped.

2.3 Annakuta

Kuta means mountain. In this festival a mountain of dishes is made to offer to Bhagawan Srikrushna. Hence, this festival is known as ‘Annakuta‘. As per Bhagawat, on Kartika Shukla Pratipada besides the regular dishes offered as Holy sacrament (Naivedya), a variety of dishes should also be made and offered. As per one’s capacity the dishes should also be given away.

In ancient times the residents of Vraj would offer 56 delicacies and 36 dishes to Indra in His worship. In its remembrance after Govardhanapujan the Annakuta festival is celebrated.

2.4 Margapali bandhana and ritual of entering town

Margapali’ means the festoon hanged on the road. In the Dharmasindhu and Adityapuran it is advised to make a long and strong rope of Darbha (sacred grass) and fasten leaves of the Ashoka tree and make festoons. These should then be tied at the entry point of the village on high pillars. They should be worshipped with sndalwood paste, flower etc.

मार्गपालि नमस्‍तेऽस्‍तु सर्वलोकसुखप्रदे ।
विधेयै: पुत्रदाराद्यै: पुनरेहि व्रतस्‍य मे ।। – धर्मसिंधु, आदित्‍यपुराण

Meaning: O festoon on the road, bestowing happiness to all living beings, I pay obeisance to you. Do come again for my vowed religious observance (vrat).

Pray in this manner to the ‘Margapali’. Then the main man of that place followed by the men and women of the place should enter the village joyously giving victory slogans. Then the main man should get the aukshan done through the married ladies. By walking under the ‘Margapali’ happiness and serenity prevails in the coming year, the diseases are dispelled and along with the residents, the animals also remain heathy and joyous.

3. Yamadwitiya (Bhaiduj)

Kartika Shukla Dwitiya is one of the three days of worshipping Yama to prevent untimely death. It is popularly known as Yamadwitiya and Bhaiduj.

3.1 Why is Kartika Shukla Dwitiya called as Yamadwitiya and Bhaiduj?

On Kartika Shukla Dwitiya due to the presence of frequencies of Yama in the environment, one can face various distresses like untimely death, accident, sudden attack of mental illness due to amnesia, fit like attacks or many obstacles in the task in hand. To restrict the Yama frequencies worship of Yama and related Deities is performed.

On Kartika Shukla Dwitiya Yama leaves His home and enters His sister’s home, that is Earth. Hence, it is known as Yamadwitiya. As a symbol of Yama visiting His sister, every man does not consume meals prepared at home, i.e. by his wife, but goes to the house of his sister to have the meal.

3.2 Rituals to be performed on Yamadwitiya

  • Worship of Yama and related Deities by brother and sister
  • Aukshan, that is, arati and felicitation of brother by sister
  • Gift from brother to sister.

3.3 Science underlying worship of Yama and related Deities by brother and sister

During Dipavali, Yama frequencies descend in higher proportion. During these days any action done with respect to Yama and related Deities gives benefit in a short time. Hence, Yama is worshipped on Kartika Shukla Dwitiya. Ritual is performed as follows:

  • 3 betel nuts are placed on the 3 mounds of rice kept on the short wooden seat.
  • For the worship of Yama and related Deities, the brother sips and releases water from the palm (Achaman), followed by utterance of place and time and resolve.
  • For the worship of Yama and related Deities, from his right side, on the first betel nut Deity Yama, on the second Chitragupta and on the third Yamaduta are invoked by offering unbroken rice. They are offered seat (asan), padhya, arghya etc.
  • They are offered string of beaded cotton and sacred thread (yadnyopavit).
  • They are worshipped with sandalwood paste, turmeric, vermilion, unbroken rice and flower etc.
  • Then incense, lamp and Holy sacrament (naivedya) are offered.
  • After the brother, the sister sips and releases water from the palm and worships these Deities.
  • She prays to the Deities to protect her brother form untimely death.

3.4 Aukshan

On this day, sisters do aukshan of Yama in the form of brother and invoke Him. They felicitate Him appropriately and pray to him to restrict the frequencies of Yama moving on Earth and the unsatiated subtle bodies from Pitruloka.

Method of aukshan, that is, arati of brother by sister:

  • The sister does aukshan of brother before the meal.
  • She first applies vermilion mark and unbroken rice grains on his forehead.
  • Then she waves a betel nut and gold ring around his face thrice in semicircular motion.
  • Then she waves an arati thrice in semicircular motion.
  • She felicitates the brother by giving him a gift.

Subtle-effect of aukshan is as follows:

  • While doing aukshan, a spiral of spiritual emotion (Bhav) is generated in the sister.
  • A flow of Chaitanya from the Universe is attracted towards the sister doing aukshan.
  • A spiral of this Chaitanya is generated in the sister.
  • Frequencies of Chaitanya flow from the hands of the sister to the platterand spread in it.
  • Flow of Chaitanya is attracted towards the brother.
  • Spiral of Chaitanya is generated in him.
  • Flow of Divine Energy is attracted in the oil lamp used for aukshan.
  • By waving an arati thrice in semicircular motion for aukshan, a spiral of active Energy is generated around the lamp.
  • From this spiral, active frequencies of Energy are emitted towards the brother. The Sun channel of the brother is activated.
  • The brother gains Energy to function and a spiral of Energy is generated in him.
  • Particles of Energy are spread in him.
  • A protective sheath is generated around him.
  • Due to the aukshan by sister, particles of Energy are spread in the environment.
  • Due to the aukshan, the brother is protected from the attacks of negative energies from Hell and the atmosphere.
  • Spiritual emotion (Bhav) is awakened in the brother.

From this it is clear, that by doing aukshan of brother by sister, both derive benefit.

  • The distress to family members due to the Yama frequencies is reduced.
  • The family members are protected from the Yama frequencies.
  • The atmosphere of the premise is purified.
  • The environment on Earth remains devoid of agony, that is, blissful for a limited period.

After aukshan brother consumes food cooked by his sister. If one does not have a sister, then meal should be consumed at the house of any cousin sister or assuming any known woman as sister.

3.5 Gift from brother to sister

After the meal, the brother felicitates the sister by giving her a gift like clothes, money etc as per his capacity. If the gift is sattvik, it is more appropriate. For example, Holy texts about spiritual practice or Dharma, clothes useful for ritualistic worship of Deities. The gift should not be tamasik. For example, a CD of an inappropriate movie.

In some places women first do aukshan of the moon in the evening and only then do aukshan of their brother. In some places, if a woman does not have a brother, she assumes moon as her brother and does his arati.

Effects of aukshan of the moon by women on Bhaiyyaduj: Due to invocation of the moon by the woman, frequencies of moon enter the atmosphere. Due to their coolness, frequencies of Yama get pacified and the heat in the environment is reduced. Due to this pleasantness of the environment, there is awakening of the Anahat-chakra of the woman.

3.6 Benefits of celebrating Bhaiduj to brother and sister

On Yamadwitiya, that is, Bhaiduj frequencies of bliss are emitted from the Universe. There is 30 % more benefit of these frequencies to all beings compared to other days. A benefit gained by the brother is:

  • Brother gaining benefit of Devi Principle awakened in sister: On this day the Devi Principle remains awakened in the woman. The brother gains benefit of this as per his spiritual emotion. If he is doing spiritual practice, then he gains benefit at a spiritual level. If he is not doing spiritual practice, then he gains material benefit. If the brother is doing spiritual practice while looking after business, he gains 50-50 percent benefit at both levels.
  • Due to the prayer by sister, reduction of the give-and-take account between brother and sister: On Yamadwitiya the sister prays for the well-being of her brother. The brother gains benefit of this as per the spiritual emotion of the sister. Hence, the give-and-take account between brother and sister reduces fractionally.
  • Reduction in destiny of sister: On the day Bhaiduj Shiva Principle is awakened in the brother. Due to this the destiny of the sister is reduced by 1 thousandth percent.

The above points show the importance of festivals mentioned in Hindu Dharma. H.H. Saint from ashram, Panvel, says “Bhaiduja is a day to destroy the malice, jealousy, enmity present in the mind and to awaken brotherhood. Wherever men will consider women as their sisters and perform their duty of protecting them, when all the women of any society and nation will be able to move fearlessly in society with respect and dignity, only that is real Yamadwitiya.”

Spiritual experience: Sri Ganesh asking to do His arati first on the day of Bhaiduj and conveying the reason for doing so, at the end of the programme: In 2005, I was in the ashram. On the morning of 3rd November 2005, I saw Sri Ganesh in child form. He said, ‘Will you do my arati first ?’ I said, ‘Yes’. In the ashram, Bhaiduj is celebrated by considering Deities as brothers and by doing their aukshan. During this programme while applying vermilion to all Deities, I was experiencing lot of love and respect towards them. While doing arati my hand was moving in front of the pictures in the gross, but in reality I was experiencing that I am doing arati of the huge Deities. Throughout the programme, I was experiencing a different type of bliss. After the programme, for a long time I was not feeling like coming out of the meditation hall. Prayer for the enhancement of seekership and spiritual emotion of devotion in all seekers was being offered. In the end Sri Ganesh said, ‘To prevent any obstacles in this programme I asked you to do my arati first.’ – Sadhak

 

Why is Amavasya falling in Dipavali period considered as auspicious?

Contents


1. Importance of Amavasya during Dipavali

Normally Amavasya is considered inauspicious, but the Amavasya that comes in the Dipavali period is as benevolent and prosperity-bestowing as Kojagiri Pournima. During Dipavali the worship of Sri Mahalakshmi has been recommended. On Dipavali Amavasya Sri Lakshmi arrives in the house of gentlemen at midnight. The ritual of the worship of Sri Lakshmi is performed accompanied by wife.

2. Ritualistic worship of Sri Lakshmi

2.1 Preperations for the worship

On the day of Dipavali, special preperations are made for Lakshmipujan as follows:

  • Before beginning the puja, achaman is done.
  • After that, pranayam and utterance of time and place is done.
  • Thereafter, resolve is done for Lakshmipujan and all other rituals associated with it.

2.2 The ritual

  • The first step of Lakshmipujan is Sri Mahaganapatipujan. After resolve, Sri Mahaganapati is invoked in the coconut kept in the ritualistic platter for Sri Mahaganapatipujan
  • Then asana (seat), padhya (worship of feet), arghya (offering water), snana (ritualistic bath), karpas vastra (string of beaded cotton), sandalwood paste, flowers and Durva, turmeric, vermilion, incense, lamp, Holy sacrament etc. are offered.
  • After Sri Mahaganapatipujan, worship of implements like kalash, conch, ritualistic bell, lamp is done.
  • Then water is sprinkled and the substances to be used in worship are purified.
  • Then unbroken rice is spread on the short wooden seat for the establishment of Varun Deity.
  • Kalash is placed on the rice.
  • Water is poured in the kalash.
  • Then sandalwood paste, mango leaves, betel nut and coins are placed in the water in the kalash.
  • A string of beaded cotton is offered to the kalash.
  • Then a plate filled with unbroken rice is placed on the kalash.
  • Ashtadal kamala is drawn on the rice in the plate with vermilion.
  • Unbroken rice is offered to the kalasha and Deity Varun is invoked in it. After that Deity Varun is worshipped by offering sandalwood paste, turmeric, vermilion, unbroken rice and flowers.
  • After invoking Deity Varun and worshipping Him, unbroken rice is offered on the plate filled with rice and all Deities are invoked.
  • All Deities are worshipped by offering sandalwood paste, flowers and Tulasi leaf, turmeric, vermilion, incense and lamp etc.

Invocation and worship of Sri Lakshmi and Deity Kubera:

  • After worship of all Deities, an idol of Sri Lakshmi is placed on the plate of rice. Currency is placed near it.
  • Then by offering unbroken rice and uttering mantra of contemplation Sri Lakshmi is invoked in the idol and Deity Kubera on the currency.
  • The Deities are offered a seat by offering unbroken rice.
  • Then the idol of Sri Lakshmi and Kubera in the form of currency are placed in the copper platter for consecration with water (Abhishek).
  • Sri Lakshmi and Kubera are offered padhya and arghya by releasing water from the ritualistic spoon (Achamani).
  • Then ritualistic bath is offered with milk, curd, ghee, honey and sugar.
  • After that ritualistic bath with water mixed with sandalwood paste is offered.
  • After that ritualistic bath with sandalwood paste and warm water is offered.
  • Then sandalwood paste and flower is offered.
  • Consecration of Sri Lakshmi and Deity Kubera is done with water.
  • Then a string of beaded cotton, sandalwood paste, flower, turmeric, vermilion, ornaments related to married status of women like bangles etc. are offered.
  • Then unbroken rice is offered to Sri Lakshmi uttering the name of each of Her body parts (Ang). This is known as Angpuja.
  • Then Sri Lakshmi is worshipped with leaves (Patrapuja). After Patrapuja, incense, lamp etc. are offered.
  • Holy sacrament (Prasad) is offered to Sri Lakshmi and Deity Kubera.
  • Finally arati is offered to Sri Lakshmi and unbroken rice grains are offered with flowers after utterance of mantras. In some places coriander seeds and puffed barley is offered to Sri Lakshmi

In the beginning of the worship, by performing the religious rituals like achaman, pranayama etc. the worshipper gains more benefit of Chaitanya on a spiritual level from the worship of the Deity. Worship of Sri Mahaganapati in the beginning makes it easy for the frequencies of all Deities to arrive at the venue of the worship without any obstruction.

Invocation and worship of Varun and other Deities: Due to the figure of ashtadala kamala, vibrations of Energy are generated at the venue and emitted in all directions. Thus the ashtadala kamala performs the task of a yantra.

Importance of invocation of Deity Varun in the kalash: Deity Varun regulates the Absolute Water Principle and while performing the rituals helps to materialise the Divine Principle as per requirement. This is the reason why Hindu Dharma has recommended invocation of Deity Varun in different types of rituals performed for worship of various Deities.

At some places a picture of Sri Ganesha-Lakshmi is drawn on the wall with different colours, at other places the idols of Sri Ganesha-Lakshmi are made and at some other places, a picture of Sri Lakshmi is engraved on a silver coin and is worshipped.

2.3 Reason for consecrating Sri Lakshmi’s idol with water

Reason for consecration of Sri Lakshmi’s idol with water after the worship of Principles of various Deities established on the ashtadala kamala during Sri Lakshmipujan: By invoking the Deity during worship, the Nirgun Principle is attracted at the venue of the worship. The idol of the Deity is the Sagun form. By consecrating the idol with water, the Sagun Principle is activated. By placing the idol which is awakened by consecration, the touch of the venue to the idol continues. Due to this the Deity Principles which were invoked, keep spreading continuously in the idol. The frequencies of Deities’ Principles start emitting through the charged idol by which besides the worshipper the persons present at the place are also benefitted.

2.4 Substances included in the Holy sacrament of Sri Lakshmi

The substances like clove, cardamom, milk and sugar are included in the Holy sacrament to be offered to Devi in Sri Lakshmipujan. The function of each of the substances is different.

  Component Function
1. Clove Destruction of tama-guna
2. Cardamom Destruction of raja-guna
3. Milk and sugar Increasing sattva-guna

Hence, these substances are called ‘Trigunavatara’. They perform the important function of increasing or decreasing the proportion of the triguns in the person as per the need.

In the worship of Sri Lakshmidevi the sugar candy, paddy, jaggery and coriander seeds, that is, dhaniya are a must. Among them, the word ‘dhaniya’ is related to ‘dhana’, that is, wealth whereas paddy is related to prosperity.

Benefit gained from the substances used in Sri Lakshmipujan:

  Substances Frequencies Benefit (%)
1. Sugar candies Sattvikta 25
2. Grains Energy 20
3. Paddy Chaitanya 25
4. Jaggery Bliss (Anand) 15
5. Coriander seeds Serenity (Shānti) 15
    Total 100

2.5 Suble effects of Sri Lakshmipujan on Dipavali

The subtle-effects of Lakshmipujan happen on both the husband and wife. However, for convenience we have shown the effect only on one person.

  • When the husband and wife remember and worship Sri Lakshmi with spiritual emotion a spiral of spiritual emotion is generated in them.
  • A flow of Divine Principle is attracted to the image of Sri Lakshmi and the coins established as a symbol of Deity Kubera and a spiral of Divine Principle is generated in them.
  • A flow of Energy is attracted in the image of Sri Lakshmi and its spiral is generated. Through the spiral the flows of Energy are emitted in the environment. These flows of Energy are emitted towards the worshipper also and its spiral is generated in him.
  • Particles of Energy spread in the body of the worshipper and the environment.
  • A flow of Chaitanya is attracted in the image of Sri Lakshmi and the coins and a spiral is generated in the image. Through this spiral flows of Chaitanya are emitted in the environment.
  • A flow of Chaitanya is emitted towards the worshipper also and a spiral of Chaitanya is generated in him. Particles of Chaitanya spread in the environment.
  • A flow of Bliss is attracted at the venue of worship. Through this flow a spiral of Bliss is created and the vibrations of Bliss spread in the environment.

It is evident that the generation of vibrations of Energy and Chaitanya through the worship of Sri Lakshmi done during Dipavali is in higher proportion. On this day the entire ‘Lakshmi Panchayatana’ enters the orbit of the Universe. The functions of the Deities included in Sri Lakshmi Panchayatana

  Deity Function
1. Kubera Wealth, that is, to actually give and
collect money
2. Gajendra Carrying wealth
3. Indra Opulence, that is, to give contentment
through wealth
4. Sri Vishnu Imparting Bliss incorporated in
happiness, that is, contentment
5. Sri Lakshmi Providing actual strength to the above
components.

On Dipavali, besides the worshipper, the persons present also benefit from these five Principles. Similarly, there are some other benefits of the worship of Sri Lakshmi:

  • Increase in spiritual emotion of devotion: By worshipping Sri Lakshmidevi and Kubera on the day of Sri Lakshmipujan, a person’s spiritual emotion of devotion increases and is sustained for 3 hours.
  • Creation of a protective sheath: Due to the touch of destroyer frequencies of Sri Lakshmi, the particles of raja-tama in the body of the person and those around him are destroyed. A protective sheath is created around his body.
  • Destruction of negative energies: On the day of Sri Lakshmipujan, due to the spiritual emotion of the worshipper the destroyer Principle frequencies of Sri Lakshmi are activated at the time of worship. Due to these frequencies the negative energies in the environment are destroyed.

Apart from this, by worshipping Sri Lakshmi on the day of Dipavali the Benefit gained from Sri Lakshmipujan by the worshipper are:

  Component Proportion (%)
1. Energy 2
2. Chaitanya 2
3. Bliss 1.25
4. Divine Principle 1

3. Elimination of Alakshmi

Alakshmi means poverty, dearth and adversity. Elimination means to drive them out of our life. On the day of Lakshmipujan a new broom is bought. At midnight, the house is swept with this broom and the garbage is collected in a shovel and thrown out. It is considered as ‘Lakshmi’ and worshipped at midnight. Garbage signifies Alakshmi. The garbage is collected in a shovel and going out from the rear door of the house, it is thrown far away. After throwing away the garbage, the shovel is sounded in every corner of the house. On any other day, the house is not swept at midnight. The subtle process taking place at the time of throwing away the garbage is:

  • Generation of raja-tama-dominant frequencies is the highest at midnight.
  • These frequencies are attracted to the raja-tama-dominant garbage in the house.
  • When the garbage filled with the raja-tama-dominant frequencies is filled in the shovel and thrown out of the premise, the raja-tama-dominant frequencies of the premise are destroyed and the premise becomes purified.
  • Due to this the sattvik frequencies can enter the premise easily.
  • The benefit of Chaitanya attracted in the premise due to Sri Lakshmipujan increases.

 

Why is ubtana applied to the body before Abhyangasnana?

Contents


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.

 

Why are lamps made from wheat flour used for Yamadipadana?

Contents


1. Dhanatrayodashi

Importance of the day of Dhanatrayodashi: According to Shaka Samvat, Ashwin Krushna Trayodashi and according to Vikram Samvat, Kartik Krushna Trayodashi is the Dhanatrayodashi. Dhanatrayodashi is the day of Jayanti of Dhanvantari, Ayurvedic healer of the Deities. At the time of ocean churning, the Ayurvedic healer of Deities, Dhanvantari, appeared holding a pot of nectar (Amrut) in His hands on the day of Dhanatrayodashi. The scholars and healers of Ayurveda worship Dhanvantari on this day and wish for the longevity and health of the people. On the day of Dhanvantari Jayanti the Holy sacrament made from neem leaves is distributed.

Dhanatrayodashi is celebrated in the form of a vowed religious observance (vrat) also. Dhanatrayodashi is a vowed religious observance (vrat) associated with Deity Yamadeva. If it is not possible to perform this vrat, offering a lamp is surely done in the evening for Yamadeva.

2. Yamadipadana

In the Dipavali period, offering of a lamp (dipadana) is done on the three days of Dhanatrayodashi, Narakachaturdashi and Yamadwitiya.

कार्तिकस्‍यासिते पक्षे त्रयोदश्‍यां निशामुखे ।
यमदीपं बहिर्दद्यादपमृत्‍युर्विनिश्‍यति ।। – स्‍कंदपुराण

Meaning: By placing a lamp outside the house for Yamadeva in the evening of Trayodashi of the dark fortnight of Kartik, the untimely death is averted. Yamadev gave an assurance to his attendants that those who performed dipadana on Dhanatrayodashi will not suffer untimely death.

2.1 Spiritual importance of Yamadipadana on Dhanatrayodashi

  • Acquiring longevity by doing dipadana: By doing dipadana a person gains radiance (Tej). By this his vital energy increases and he gains longevity.
  • Gaining the blessings of Yamadeva: On the day of Dhanatrayodashi the flows of Yama frequencies are active in the Universe. Hence, on this day the proportion of getting fruits of all the rituals associated with Yama Deity is higher by 30 percent as compared to other days. On this day lamps are offered to Yamadeva and His blessings are sought.
  • Expressing gratitude towards Yamadeva: On the day of Dhanatrayodashi, Yamadeva rules over Hell. On Dhanatrayodashi the frequencies emitted by Yamadeva reach various regions of Hell. For this reason the frequencies emitted by the negative energies present in the Hell are under control. As a result, the proportion of frequencies of Hell on Earth is reduced. So Yamadeva is worshipped with spiritual emotion and dipadana is performed to express gratitude towards Him. Performing Yamadipadana means pleasing Yamadeva and offering a prayer for protection from the distressing frequencies which are responsible for untimely death.

2.2 Substances of worship required for Yamadipadana

In the ritual of Yamadipadana there should be sandalwood paste, flowers, turmeric, vermilion, consecrated rice, that is, unbroken rice etc. in the ritualistic platter. Similarly for the purpose of achaman a copper platter, tumbler (panchapatra), spoon (achamani) are also necessary. For the purpose of Yamadipadana special lamps made of kneaded wheat flour mixed with turmeric powder are used.

Importance of lamps made of wheat flour: On Dhanatrayodashi the tama-dominant Energy frequencies and tama-dominant frequencies of Water Principle are active in higher proportion. These frequencies are responsible for the untimely death of a person. The lamp made of wheat flour has the ability to pacify these frequencies. So for the purpose of Yamadipadana the lamps made of wheat flour are used.

Science underlying drawing a rangoli associated with the Krushna Principle for placing a lamp at the time of Yamadipadana: For installing the lamp for the purpose of Yamadipadana a rangoli of Srikrushna device (yantra) is drawn. There is a special importance of making a rangoli of Srikrushna yantra in this manner for the purpose of Yamadipadana. Before the ritual of worshipping a lamp, a resolve is made after invoking Sri Vishnu with His 24 Names. ‘Srikrushna’ is a complete incarnation of Sri Vishnu. Yamadeva also has Srikrushna Principle. For this reason the arrival of Yamadeva occurs in the form of Principle at the venue of the ritual in a short time. The distress caused to a person because of the inertia-indicating frequencies associated with death is reduced as a result of the worship of Srikrushna and Yamadeva. Shiva Principle is also present in Yamadeva. For this reason rangoli associated with Shiva Principle is also drawn.

2.3 Ritual of Yamadipadana

  • First water is sipped from the palm and released (achaman), breathing exercises (pranayam), thereafter utterance of time and place are done.
  • Thereafter, resolve is made about Yamadipadana. While making resolve, the following mantra is chanted.

    मम अपमृत्‍यु विनाशार्थम्‌ यमदीपदानं करिष्‍ये ।

    Meaning: I am performing Yamadipadana to prevent my untimely death.

  • The flour lamp placed in the copper platter is lit.
  • Then lamp is placed on the centre point of the rangoli of Srikrushna yantra.
  • Then sandalwood paste, turmeric, vermilion and akshat, are offered to the lamp.
  • Flower is offered to the lamp.
  • Obeisance is paid to the lamp.

Subtle effect of ritualistic worship of the lamp:

  • Upon applying sandalwood paste to the lamp, a blue blissful flame of Vishnu principle appears in the middle of the lamp.
  • Upon offering flower to the lamp, presence of radiance (Tej) in the form of a yellow spot is seen in the blue flame.
  • Upon offering akshat to the lamp, the Tej Principle present in the form of yellow spot in the blue flame gets activated. Through this Tej Principle, frequencies of Tej Principle are emitted into environment in the form of spirals.

Other rituals performed in the ritualistic worship are:

  • Akshat are placed in the copper platter to offer a seat to the lamp.
  • This lamp is placed in a copper platter to be taken out of the house. Then the lamp is taken out of the house.
  • Outside the house, the lamp is placed facing south and prayer is offered to Yamadeva.

    मृत्‍युना पाशदंडाभ्‍यां कालेन श्‍यामयासह ।
    त्रयोदश्‍यां दीपदानात्‌ सूर्यज: प्रीयतां मम ।। – स्‍कंदपुराण

    Meaning: On Trayodashi I offer this lamp to the son of Sun, that is, Yamadeva. May He free me from the noose of death and look after my welfare.

    Those not knowing this verse can pray by understanding the meaning.

  • After this water is released for offering the lamp (Yamadipadana).

2.4 Effects of placing the worshipped lamp outside the house facing south

Frequencies of Yama are attracted and emitted in higher proportion from south. Subtle process taking place by installing the lamp to south is as follows:

  • Flow of Yama frequencies is attracted towards the lamp from the south.
  • This flow of Yama frequencies spreads around the lamp in the form of spirals.
  • Inferior negative energies are dispelled due to the Yama frequencies.

Deity of the place (Sthandevata) and Deity of the premise (Vastudevata) arrive in Principle form to take darshan of Yamadeva. All members residing in the premise benefit by the arrival of these Deities. As the Yama frequencies come closer, by offering the worshipped lamp to Yamadeva, it is acquired by Him in a short time and easily. Hence, the person is protected from the frequencies that cause untimely death.

With reference to Yamadipadana, a Saint from ashram states, “Yama is the Deity of death and Dharma. We should be constantly aware that death of every person is certain. Offering the lamp to Yamadev we should pray that ‘We are offering the lamp as a symbol of alertness and light, please accept it’.”

3. Ritualistic worship of treasury by merchants

Commercial year is from one Divali to subsequent Divali. Account books of New Year are bought on this day. At some places merchants worship their treasury. Thus, from the spiritual practice of merchant (Vaishya) class, moving ahead on the path of Spirituality becomes possible for the traders. On the day of Dhanatrayodashi, new vessels of gold or silver or new clothes are purchased.

Science underlying the purchase of new vessels of gold or silver on Dhanatrayodashi: On this day, the wealth form of Sri Lakshmi is invoked through the action of purchasing new vessels of gold or silver and the active Lakshmi principle is given momentum. This helps in accumulation of wealth in the treasury safe.