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viShayAH _54_34 udakashAnti-parichayaH veda-shAkhA- pathelpdisclida.gq3 _02_11 udakashAntau mantrAH. Udaka Shanti Mantra Eng. by: SUVRATSUT. Publication date: Usage: Attribution-No Derivative Works Topics: STUTI. Collection: opensource. pathelpdisclida.gq DownloadReport. Published on Oct View Download Facebook · Twitter · E-Mail · LinkedIn. DESCRIPTION.
This is contained in the 96th and 97th chapters of the Aswamedika Parva- one out of the eighteen parvas. Asks Yudhishtra: Sri Krishna: Kesava! Who is a Brahmin? What is his true character? Listen to Me, Oh, Yudhishtra! Great one among the ardent followers of dharma! It is they who have tuft, who wear Yajyopaveeta, who worship Agni, who love their spouse, who recite Vedas, who worship Devi Gayatri through performing Sandhyavandana who perform their duties towards guests and who perform pitru karmas with devotion Oh King, Pandava, listen to me further.
Yaksha prasna One day, during their exile of Pandavas, a deer carries away samids a particular variety of sticks of a Sage. The Sage cries for help since without them he cannot perform his daily karmas. Pandavas decide to help him and run deep into the jungle in search of the deer. Overcome by thirst from the long chase, they look for drinking water and Nakula finds a lake. Without bothering, Nakula continues to drink and falls dead.
Other brothers Sahadeva, Arjuna and Bhima follow Nakula and also die. Yudhishtra instead starts answering the questions of the Yaksha. His answers satisfy the Yaksha, who is actually Lord Yama. Two sample questions and answers: Yaksha: What should a man abandon, to become lovable, to grieve less, to become rich and to become happy?
Yudhishtra: Abandoning pride, man becomes lovable; abandoning anger, he grieves not; abandoning desire, he becomes rich; abandoning avarice, he becomes happy. Yaksha: What is the greatest wonder of the world? Yudhishtra: The fact that people think that they are permanent in spite of the fact that they see with their own eyes several people dying every day.
Could there be a greater wonder than this? The great Pitamaha waits or Uttarayana to come so that he can breathe his last. Directed by Sri Krishna, Pandavas request Bhishma to share his wisdom and give guidance. Bhishma gives many dharmic instructions and shares his thoughts with Pandavas in the presence of Sri Krishna. Then he goes on. A few gems in the invaluable Bhishma Upadesa: The king would harm himself if he harasses the subjects in his ignorance by imposing taxes not founded in the texts and motivated by thought of income only.
The world is struck with death and surrounded by old age. Days and nights speed by: one should be always awake. Do welfare and follow dharma; let not time pass you. Even as your acts are not finished, death drags you. The continuous meditation of Lord Narayana, worshipping Him, making offerings to Him and singing His praises are all means of realizing the ultimate truth. Vishnu Sahasranama It was during Bhishma Upadesa that the very popular and powerful Vishnu Sahasranama Stotra was revealed by Bhishma Pitamaha, from his death-bed, to the world.
To a question by Yudhishtra, the revered Pitamaha gave the Upadesa of this great stotra to Pandavas in the presence of Sri Krishna. Almost all the rites except a few provide for a Homa accompanied by the recitation of Vedic mantras in the presence of elders of the family. In Hindu Dharma, the birth of a child has a distinct religious side to it, and likewise the transition to other stages.
The Samskaras are forty in number. This is otherwise known as purva janma karma.
But birth alone does not confer Brahmanya on a person. The Rishis have listed quite a few samskaras or Vedic rituals that one to be performed for himself by his parents or elders, and afterwards to be done personally.
Then only one can be rightly be called a Brahmana. There are forty such samskaras, and one of the most important among these is the Upanayana or the sacred thread ceremony. Vamana Avatara: Upanayana Samskara being performed for Vamana Objective : The main purpose of the upanayana is to take a boy nearer to his Guru and get him accepted by the Guru. The Guru then enables him to learn and understand the Vedas, and through appreciation of the Vedas attain the Ultimate Truth.
At what age? The best time to perform the upanayana is when the boy is seven years old. It is all right to do this samskara at the age 5 or up to the age of 11 — and so it is best done between 7 and 11 years of age.
If the boy crosses 11, the Sastras still permit performance of the upanayana till the boy is It is imperative that the poonal or the sacred thread is adorned by the boy at least before he turns 16, for after this age he is supposed to lose his Braahmanatva or the right to Brahminism if he has not had his upanayana.
In this day and age, when almost no samskaras is performed strictly as prescribed, all Brahmin parents are advised to at least do the upanayana of their sons at the right age. Procedure: We are all aware that the adornment of the Yajnopaveeta or the sacred thread is one of important parts of the Upanayana.
It is interesting to see how the yajnopaveeta, the sacred thread, is given shape. The basic material for the yajnopaveeta, also known as poonal in Tamil, is cotton thread woven by persons who are qualified to preach Vedas. Married women including widows are also qualified to do this job. He makes 96 such loops, folds the total length 3 times and presses the shortened length till it achieves the desired stiffness.
Next he makes this into three circular loops. The edges are knotted twice to make the final product — a circular thread with two knots. While doing so a particular mantra is chanted silently by the person who ties the knot, known as brahma-mudichchu. The poonal is worn across the body, from the left shoulder to the right hip. It should not go below the navel: and if it does this can happen to shorter persons , the extra length should be folded and knotted again, to reduce the length.
The number: A Brahmachari wears one and a Grahasta two. One important and interesting point to note is that a grahasta should never be without a tritiya vastram or a third garment over the top of his body in addition to the regular veshti and uttariya.
It may happen that he finds himself without a tritiya vastra at times, and so some grahastas wear a third poonal, just so that their niyamas are not disturbed. This is an extra role played by the poonal. Upanayana has now become a major social function in most Brahmin households; and so feasting, inviting guests and video-filming of the event etc. But at no time should this take precedence over the Vedic rites involved. Upanayana is essentially a Vedic ritual and not a social function.
Strictly there is no room for partying or a social gathering. This number will depend upon the affordability of the family conducting the Upanayana. If possible, Anna Sraaddha naandi — that is naandi with homam — is recommended. For at least four days following the upanayana day, samida dana has to be done. This requires careful planning, well in advance. And the samida dana should be done with devotion.
Rites involved in the Upanayana: A number of practices have been prescribed as part of the proper conduct of an Upanayana. All these items listed here have to be done along with Veda mantras and hence the father of the boy should perform these with utmost attention and involvement. The following are most important of these rituals. Udakashanti japa 2. Ankurarpana 3. Pratisara bandha 4. Naandi sraaddha 5.
Punnyahavachana 6. Yajnopaveeta dharana 7. Kumara bhojana 8. Chaula 9. Adornment of the Brahmacharya emblems Asmaarohana Maunji bandhana Hastagrahana Pradhana Upanayana homa Brahmopadesa Gayatri mantra Samida dana Bhikshacharana Pranava-sraddha-medha puja Harati Madhyahnika It is worth emphasizing that the whole process should be executed with great care, sincerity and faith.
As far as possible, one should try to extend upanayana invitation only to relatives and friends of the community. Upanayana is not a social function for which everyone can be invited. It is a purely sastrokta karma and the sanctity is vital. If need be, there can be some other programmes like reception in the evening after the Brahmopadesa where all can be invited for a social gathering.
Here also care should be taken to see that the boy's Sandhyavandana does not get disturbed.
Every Brahmin boy for whom upanayana is done at the right age will be equipped with Brahma tejas and can advance to great heights in his personal and religious life. Postponement Upanayana should not be postponed for silly reasons.
Recently I came across a family who had postponed their third son's upanayana as they had been told that three Brahmacharis should not live at a time in a house. This is incorrect. Similarly in another peculiar case, the boy's Bahamopadesa was postponed because the position of boy's planets according to his horoscope were not conducive.
This is also not acceptable. It is against Dharma Sastras to postpone upanayana on any such grounds. Sandhyavandana After performance of his upanayana a person should compulsorily do Sandhyavandana. Dharma sastra is categorical on this point: it clearly says that a Brahmin who does not do Sandhyavandana is impure and unfit for any Vedic karma.
This is the pivotal karma. People who complain of not having time to do the full Sandhyavandana can at least do the key sections — arghya, pranayama, maarjana, praasana, tarpana and Gayatri japa. These will take just 15 minutes altogether, and these parts can be easily learnt. It should be understood that there is no alternative to Sandhyavandana. Going to a temple or attending a bhajan or any other form of devotion does not exempt one from Sandhyavandana.
Bhakti marga is truly great, but cannot be in lieu of this key karma. It is worth quoting here the words of Kanchi Maha Swamigal on Sandhyavandana in a lecture in Mudikondan village on 16th December It is now seen that people undertake English education and stop doing Sandhyavandana, which is now done only by persons from Vaidika families and some old families rooted in tradition.
The non-performance of Sandhyavandana and other such key karmas is impacting the health and welfare of mankind at large. Agni worship fire , the primordial element of Nature, is in danger of disappearing.
People ordained to Brahmin karmas should do Sandhyavandana without letup and this will ensure the Agni attains its Poorna jyoti, which will have a salutary effect on the wellbeing of all humankind.
The prosperity and affluence of Brahmin families where Sandhyavandana is no longer being done can only be because they come from an ancestry who had religiously observed their karmas, and the momentum of these past karmas is still keeping them going.
How thoughtless! Enough books are available on these and therefore I will be content with giving the details of Parishechana, which is common to all of us, yet may not available in many books. Parishechana is performed at the start and close of lunch and dinner and everyone after upanayana should do parishechana. The Process: 1 Keep a Pancha-patra uddhrani tumbler with a small spoon of water to your right side while sitting to eat. It is preferable the person who serves the food serves the water instead of you yourself taking the water : Amrtopas taranam-asi 7 Prana ahuti 6 times : Then using the three fingers thumb, middle and ring take a few morsels of anna food and swallow each time chanting each mantra.
The rice should not touch the teeth and should be swallowed whole. Praanaaya swaha Apaanaaya swaha Vyaanaaya swaha Udanaaya swaha Samanaaya swaha Brahmmane swaha 8 Now, the person serving food pours a little water on your left palm. Touch your heart with the left palm, touch the leaf with the ring finger of the right hand, and chant this matra. Brahmmanima Atma Amrutatvaaya and proceed to eat. Summary It is no exaggeration to say that Upanayana is a fundamental samskara among all the forty Vedic karmas prescribed.
Only after a person adorns the poonal he is qualified to do the other karmas. To ignore or treat this basic karma is therefore inexcusable. A person who has a son and can conduct his Brahmopadesa is indeed blessed. May God give all such parents the right mindset and proper orientation to perform upanayana of their children in the right manner and at the right age!
This has to be treated as a Godly ritual and performed with devotion and as per procedure. The key to the processes involved in Vivaha is observance of the Vedic practices specified, in line with the advice of the Sutrakars and giving pre-eminence to the Veda mantras and prayogas. Of late the laukika or social element of a marriage — reception, music programme Mangalya Dharana Muhurta etc. These are certainly unavoidable and they do give pleasure. But these cannot take precedence over the Vedic rituals, and should be included in the marriage subject to the time and facilities required for the ritualistic parts of the marriage.
Marriages would span four days and more in the olden days, but have now been reduced to two days or a day and a half. But the rites listed for the proper conduct of a Vivaha can be completed in two days or less, and so this is no hindrance. Most people deem it important that the function should be a grand gala one, celebrated with much pomp and splendour. The entire neighbourhood should be awed by the programmes included: so what if these involve practices alien to our culture?
That the vivaha is in fact a key karma and a Vedic ritual has been totally forgotten. The proper ritualistic performance of a marriage requires exactitude in many actions, starting with dress as per the dress code.
Plaited hair and madisaar pudavai nine-yard sari are mandatory for married ladies associated with the bride and the bridegroom — and the pancha kachcham is similarly a must for men. But even this simple religious practice is not being followed in many marriages these days. One is acutely conscious of the ravages of time and the need to modify our stance in line with the century in which we are living.
But that does not mean we eschew Vedic aspects of a marriage. It is time we sought out our roots and went back in time to some glorious practices ordained for Brahmins — of which vivaha is paramount. What does marriage bestow on a Brahmin? These and other karmas can only be done by the person with his wife actively involved. Brahmins at other ashrams do not have the right to perform these karmas except pitru karma.
The role of the wife Observance of grahasta dharma calls for the right mindset and a good wife. The lady of the house plays an all-important role in ensuring that the family follows the dharmic path. Her inherent belief in religious rites, sanctity, puja, devotion in other forms, and pitru karma is of great importance to direct her man effectively along the religious path.
What does he say? Even at a social level, a married man is more credible and gets a holistic outlook to life and its pleasures. Events forming part of a Vivaha Before we begin, one thought: Why not include in the wedding invitation a Sanskrit version, apart from the mother tongue and English?
This is not for communication but to emphasise the sanctity of marriage as a Vedic rite and not merely a social function.
The following are some crucial events in the proper conduct of a marriage. Sri Vigneswara puja 2. Sumangali Prarthana 3. Samaradhana 4. Yatra dana 5.
Pandhakkaal muhurta 6. Ashta vrata for the boy 7. Jaata karma or Namakarana naming 8. Naandi sraaddha Abhyudaya 9.
Raksha bandhan kaappu Sprinkling of paalika Kasi yatra Exchange of garlands Oonjal the swing Anujna Sankalpa for Kanyadana Kanyadana Placing the nugaththadi a small plough is placed on the head of the bride by the groom.
Giving the koorai pudavai the bridal sari to the bride Mangalya dharana Adorning with the metti the toe-ring Panigrahana Saptapadi Pradhana homa Treading the ammi Laaja homa Untying munjippul Graha pravesa Commencing Aupasana, Agneya Stalipaka Gandharva puja Sesha homa Vivaha-anga naandi The significance of Vivaha rituals In essence the bride identifies herself completely with the groom through the course of the Vivaha rituals.
She is exhorted to follow her spouse in treading the part of righteousness. She is called upon to stand by him through thick and thin lending him full support to face the vicissitudes in life. We will describe briefly some of the events listed above. Nischayatartha engagement It is a common practice nowadays to have an elaborate engagement ceremony, where relatives are invited and the engagement is announced. This betrothal is a reconfirmation on the evening of the day before the actual wedding.
Japas The rituals of the wedding day start with both parties separately performing prayers to purify and prepare themselves for all the Vedic rites.
Invitees are received, rose water sprinkled on them, and sandal paste, sugar and flowers offered at the entrance. This process serves to clear the air of any negative vibrations. Nadaswaram is also played. Kasi Yatra Kasi yatra denotes the migration of the boy from Brahmacharya to Grahasta ashram.
Pancha Kachcham and Madisar One important symbolism at marriage and after is the attire to be worn by the couple. The bridegroom for the first time is initiated into wearing his dhoti in a manner called pancha kachcham. He puts this on after his morning prayers and before he starts on Kasi Yatra. In our tradition, after the initiation of wearing madisar and pancha kachcham during the marriage, the couple are expected to wear this attire all through their lives.
While it is understandable that men and women today are unable to wear such attire every day, it is desirable that they wear this on important festive and karma days.
Wearing of pancha kachcham and madisaar is quite simple and far more convenient than many people believe. I have highlighted below the ease with which pancha kachcham can be worn. The ideal size of the Veshti for wearing Pancha Kachcham could be either: 9 x 5 yards or 10 x 6 yards Pancha kachcham in visuals First act: Roll the poonal yajnopaveeta in the right ear as shown in the picture.
Second act: Tie the small Veshti Uttariya round the head Now start wearing the Kachcham step by step. Step 1: Open the big Veshti completely 9 or 10 yards. Hold it putting it behind you by left hand at one end and at 6th feet by right hand. Measure exactly 3 feet from that left end.
Step 2: Wrap it around you once as shown keeping the wrap a little tight at the stomach. Fold the Veshti a few times rolling down so that it is held firmly at your hip.
See the pictures. Step 4: Take the end that is on tip typically should be the one to your left start from the end, slowly make folds of about 2 inches left. Step 5: Insert the folds into the wrap just at your Nabhi. Take other free end of the Veshti, starting breadthwise, make similar folds. Step 7: Ensure that the folds are not twisted. Insert the folded portion at a suitable point in front as shown and straighten fold by fold in a straight portion by deeply pressing at the fold edge.
Do it repeatedly till it gets straightened and looks neat. Step 9: Run this between your legs and bring it up behind you as shown. Here care should be taken that legs should not be lifted.
One should not lift the legs from the ground. Insert the new set of folds behind your back as shown Step Take the breadth portion of the top fold and starting from the end so that the bordering colour is visible make similar folds as shown Insert this set of folds second set on the top of the previous one in front, just below the Nabhi.
Step Straighten it fold by fold to make the frontage as shown in the picture. Now bring back the Poonal to its original position and take the small veshti from the head and tie it around the hip as shown Care should be taken that the Uttariya is not be tied around the main Veshti as belt. It should be tied around the hip above the main Veshti as shown.
The pancha kachcham should look as shown in the picture. Exchange of garlands The exchange of garlands denotes the coming together of two individuals and their families.
A spirit of joy and vivacity marks this procedure, signifying the strengthening ties between the families. Oonjal — the swing After the exchange of garlands the bride and the groom sit side by side on a swing and ladies go around them with lighted lamps and throw coloured rice balls around them, to the accompaniment of devotional singing.
The ritual marks the first time the girl and the boy are together. The bride sits to the left of the groom generally it is the other way round.
Kanya dana — giving away the bride The prospective father-in-law seats the bridegroom facing east and washes his feet personifying him as Mahavishnu. Then in vadhu sameekshana the groom and the bride look at each other formally for the first time. He recites dosha nivarana mantra to the Gods Varuna, Brihaspati, Indra and Surya and wipes the eyebrows of the bride with a blade of darbha grass.
He then chants rodana prayaschitta mantra to ward off the effects of the cry of parents on account of the separation of their daughter. Water is poured through the hole of the yoke chanting Veda mantras.
The yoke and gold signify auspiciousness. The blessings of the Gods are invoked in the water. Five Veda mantras are recited to sanctify the bride in preparation for the subsequent stages of the wedding. This aspect of the wedding is known as the mangala snana vadhu snana.
Surya, Varuna and other Gods are invoked. These rites for the girl are similar to the sacred thread ceremony upanayana for the boy. This is followed by vastra dana when the bridegroom gives the wedding dress koorai pudavai to the bride invoking Lord Indra through a mantra. The bride for the first time initiated into wearing this sari in a manner called madisar. His sister fastens two more knots. This is essential for my long life. I tie this around your neck, O maiden! May you live happily for a hundred years with me!
She is now ready to follow all Vedic rituals with me. For this purpose I tie this girdle around her waist. The bride and the groom sit on a new mat in front of the Agni. The groom recites three mantras which invoke Soma, Gandharva and Agni to give strength, beauty and youth to the bride. The ritual symbolizes the bride surrendering her heart to the groom and the beginning of a new relationship. The Gods Bhaga, Aryama, Surya and Indra have given you to me to help me perform the duties of a householder as prescribed by Dharma.
He helps her take seven steps around the fire. At the beginning of each step, he recites Veda mantras to invoke the blessings of Mahavishnu to guard his wife and bless her. You have walked seven steps with me; you are now my companion.
Neither of us will forgo this companionship. We will decide our obligations and carry them out with mutual love and goodwill. We shall strive for a common vision. You are the earth and I am the sky. I am the semen; you are its bearer. I am the mind and you are speech. You are Rig mantra and I Sama mantra. With these two rituals the bride and the groom attain the status of husband and wife. Pradhana homa After Saptapadi, they take their seats on the western side of the Agni, sacred fire, and conduct pradhana homa, when the bridegroom seeks the blessings of Lord Indra and other deities.
Asmarohana or treading the millstone ammi Here the husband holds the right toe of his wife, lifts her leg gently and places it on a flat granite grinding stone ammi in Tamil. The ammi is placed to right of the Agni. Laaja Homa This is a homa with parched rice pori in Tamil. Here the bride cups her hands and her brother fills the cupped hand with the puffed rice. The husband adds a drop of ghee to the rice and recites five mantras.
At the end of each mantra, the puffed rice is offered to the sacred fire as havis offering. After each offering, they go round the Agni thrice and the bride steps on the ammi. The three mantras chanted during pradakshina circumambulation and the mantra chanted while the bride steps on the stone are repeated after each offering. After the Laaja homa and two more mantras, the groom removes the darbha girdle of the bride.
With this, all the Vedic ceremonies come to an end. Nalangu Nalangu is celebrated in the evening hours after the completion of the marriage rituals.
This is basically performed to bring the two families together with a lot of fun and frolic, and to ease the tension of all the rituals. The groom is decorated by the bride and vice versa. In this event all relatives participate. Many mantras are chanted for the safe travel etc. On reaching home, the groom chants prayers to thank all the Devatas for the safe conduct of the marriage.
The girl is asked to enter the house with her right foot forward. Pravesa homa is then performed for progeny, health, wealth, longevity and togetherness of the new couple.
In the evening, the husband shows his wife the Pole star Druva darshana to infuse steadiness in her mind. He later shows her the Arundhati star to inspire her to lead a virtuous life like Arundhati.
Garbhadana: At the end of all the rituals, the husband touches the heart of his wife and propitiates all gods and goddesses for a mutually affectionate life. With a few Veda mantras addressed to Prajapati and Siva, the vivaha becomes complete. Then the theory taught has to be put into practice; in other words the rites prescribed in the Vedas must be performed.
For this purpose a man has to take a helpmate after he has completed his brahmacharyasrama. This helpmate is a "property" that can never be separated from him. She is not meant not only to be a cook for him, not only one to give sensual gratification. She is called "dharma-patni" and also "yajna-patni".
She has to be with her husband in the pursuit of dharma and has also to be a source of encouragement in it. As a dharma patni, she has to be by his side during the performance of sacrifices; she must also play a supportive role in all those rituals that have the purpose of making the divine powers favourable to mankind.
It must be noted that a wife creates well-being for the world even as she does the work of cooking or is a source of sensual gratification for her husband.
I will tell you how. It is not that she cooks for the husband alone. She has to provide food every day to the guests, to the sick and to the birds and beasts and other creatures.
This is how she serves the purpose of "atithyam" and "vaisvadevam". The children born to here are not to be taken as the product of pleasure she affords her husband. She gives birth to them to perpetuate the Vedic dharma.
Yes, even the raising of sons is intended for the dharmic life of the future. No other religion has before it such a goal for the marriage samskara. In our religion the man-wife relationship is not concerned with the mundane alone. It serves the Atman as well as the good of mankind.
In other religions too marriages are conducted, say, in a church with God as witness. But ideal of marriage is not as lofty as ours. The purpose of marriage in our religion is to purify the husband further and to make the wife his devoted and self-effacing companion. There is no such high purpose in the marriage of other religion.
In other countries the man-woman relationship is akin to a family or social contract. Here it is an Atman connection. But this very connection is a means of disconnection also - of freeing the Atman, the self, from the bondage of worldly existence. There is no room for divorce in it. Even to think of it is sinful. This helpmate is expected not only to run his household but assist him in the practice of the Vedic dharma. The second is to bring forth, into this world, children of noble outlook and character who are to be heirs to the great Vedic tradition, citizens of the future who will be the source of happiness in this world.
The third is to create a means for women to be freed from worldly existence. A man who is not yet fully mature inwardly is assisted in his karma by his wife.
By doing so, by being totally devoted to her husband, she achieves maturity to a degree greater than he does. The fourth objective is sensual gratification and it is distinctly subordinate to the first three. But we have forgotten the first three important objectives. All that remains is the fourth, the enjoyment of carnal pleasure. If people take my advice in respect of the noble ideals of marriage as taught in the sastras a way will open out to them for their inner advancement.
We also need to continually clarify our questions and doubts in these subjects. These duties or rituals are collectively referred to as Apara karma. What is given here is intended for believers in samskara who want to do their karmas religiously but do not know how to, or know peripherally but seek more clarity. This is not meant for nonbelievers who do not want to do their karma.
This section of the book tries to clarify doubts that come up often, and to answer some FAQs. I must add here that the subject is truly vast, and this chapter is just a summary. To know more, to get into the intricate details, you can approach your elders or contact me. Death is inevitable We all understand one thing: from the moment a person is born he is moving towards death.
This is correct. A sinner suffers the effects of his bad deeds by going to hell, and a saintly person realises the results of his good deeds and goes to heaven. In the after-life a person achieves saalokhya when he gets into devaloka; he achieves sarshtita when he can get the wealth of devas; and he achieves saayujya when he becomes a deva himself. The necessity for Apara karma While the deeds of a person when alive have a great deal of impact on his station after death, the apara karmas done for him after his death by his son or the karta have an equally crucial impact.
He will feel the sadness from the shortcomings in his Apara karma, and that is good neither for him nor for his family. When a grahasta dies, two kinds of death rites are possible. Paitru medhika samskara which is discussed here is the general ritual, for all the others. The essence of Apara karma Apara karma, which spreads over 12 days, should be done by a dutiful son or the Karta properly, and under suitable guidance of the Purohit and elders.
He can repay his debt of gratitude to his parents in no better manner than doing their death rites with sincerity, devotion and above all complete faith. In essence, the objective of funeral rites is to facilitate the migration of the soul of a dead person from the status of preta to the abode of the pitrus. Apara karma is done in two phases: the rites during 12 days immediately after death, called Apara Karma; and the performance every month thereafter for 12 months on the same day tithi , called Maasika.
In addition, there are Sodakumba Sraaddhas, four Una masikas to the performed over the year. Two features of Apara Karma can be called the essence of the ritual. His directions should be followed implicitly and the mantras repeated accurately; there should be very little disturbance during the performance; and the timings indicated by him should be maintained.
Danas: Dana is however entirely in the hands of the Karta. The quantity and quality of Dana should be decided by him in consultation with the Purohit. Any short-changing by the Karta in offering danas can affect the benefits of the karma.
People who live in big cities like Chennai understandably cannot afford to do the karma at home, as they live in small flats in crowded localities. They seek public institutions that are built especially for the conduct of such rituals. Some of these also provide free services for underprivileged people. This is a reprehensible practice: People who can afford to spend should not hesitate to spend what they can for satisfactory performance of apara karma.
Scrounging in this matter reflects ingratitude to the pitrus and this may have adverse effects later. Poor people who wish to do karma properly but are unable to, can approach their Purohit who will certainly help to perform the karma in a way that the Karta can afford. Money is not the yardstick for how well the rites are performed: the essence is to do what you can, but do it effectively and with total involvement.
The observance of karmas in general and apara karma in particular has a lot to do with how and in what circumstances a person is brought up. But disciplined and devoted conduct of this antyeshti has great benefits for many generations of the family. Likewise, the karma done casually or irregularly can have unfavourable results. The deceased person has to cleanse himself of the worldly impurities and travel to pitruloka and be transformed into a pitru.
This happens through the process of apara karma. We are also fortunate to have today with us Purohits in large numbers who can perform apara karma properly and effectively. They are professionals and no sambhavana paid to them can be an excess. It is therefore essential that each one of us understands this samskara and does it to the best of our ability.
Sections of Apara karma The complete set of apara karmas has been segregated into seven sections for convenience. Karna mantra and Dahana cremation 2. Nitya Vidhi 3. Sanchayana 4. Dasaaham 10th day rites 5. Ekadasehani or Vrushabhodsarjana on the 11th day 6. Dwadasehani or Sapindikarana on the 12th day 7. Griha yajna or Subhasweekarana on the 13th day These seven steps can be viewed as falling into 3 stages: 1.
For the sareera body 2. For the preta: the preta refers to a transient form that the person who has departed takes, which is distinct from the dead body — these are not the same 3. For the pitru: after the preta has departed the rites to be performed to help the preta attain pitru status We will now see each of the seven steps in some detail: 1. It is our identification and our concrete form when we are alive. It deserves to be given a respectful send-off on death, and this is what is done in this step.
The body is cleansed with purifying mantras and offered to Agni in this process, the process of cremation. The body is not our creation, and so we have no ownership rights to it.
It is created by the pancha bhootas, viz. This is why the Sastras have even presented alternative courses of action in case the body is mutilated in an accident or is untraceable. Sastras also provide for exceptional cases like when the deceased person wants to donate parts of his body, and have prescribed the prayaschitta to be done in such an event.
As far as possible — strictly from the standpoint of proper observance — donating the body or parts of it to medical colleges or hospitals should be avoided, for in such cases the body may not be cremated — and cremation is absolutely essential. Question: Are Karna mantra and Dahana samskara the same? Answer : No. They are different: Dahana follows Karna mantra. Karna mantra is the function to be performed before cremation.
Ideally this should be done just before death, even as the life is ebbing away. Process of Dahana: The Karta has a quick bath without use of soap etc.
He wears only a single cloth. The Purohit guides the rituals. After the homa and related mantras the body is taken to the cremation ground. The grandson s carries a ghee-flame and walks a few steps in front of the body van. The karta carries Agni in a pot and accompanies the body to the burial ground. After elaborate rituals the body is handed over to the officials at the crematorium and they take care of the actual job of cremation.
Both forms of cremation are acceptable, but strictly from a traditional perspective manual burning is preferable. The rituals and rites to be observed before cremation are of course the same in both formats. Pashaana sthaapana: As soon as the body is cremated, Pashaana-sthapana preta avahana is to be done. This is done by installing three sets of two stones each in the tadaaka tira lake bed and in the griha-dwara entrance of the house , to the accompaniment of mantras.
Nitya Vidhi: On completion of cremation the preta is rid of the body, but it suffers from a terrible thirst and burning sensation. The vaasanas sensations have not left the preta yet, although the bodily connection has been severed. Nitya Vidhi provides the answer for quenching the thirst and the burning. In this step, as we have seen above, small stones are buried in two different places with mantras.
If the rituals take place in a village, one such set of the Pashaana sthaapana is done in the house griha dwara kunda and the other one near some water body tadaaka tira kunda. Tarpanas of two different types like Tilodaka and Vasodaka are done, apart from pinda-pradana etc. The rice for the pindam should be cooked after bath and in the wet by the daughter of the deceased person or any other lady.
As part of Nitya Vidhi, two sraaddhas called Ekottara Vriddhi sraaddha and Nava-Sraaddha should be performed in hiranya format i. Brahmins should be invited and offered rice, pulses and unripe banana in vegetable form and not fruit besides dakshina. Sanchayana: This step deals with the dissolution of the Asti ashes , collected from the burial ground, in punya-tirtha holy water.
During the pooja, various mantras are recited which will charge the water in the kalash with divind power and this water is utilized for the abhishekam of the diety and given to the devotees as prasadam.
Udaka Shanti Pooja is ideal for anyone seeking auspicious results in their endeavours. Procedure of Udaka shanti Pooja After Ganesh Pooja, a kalash filled with Ganga water is prepared with mango leaves and coconut. Varuna and other Gods are invoked into the Kalasha. Mantras from Yajurveda are recited. This pooja involves the recitation of total lines and will consume more thatn three hours of time.
For a prolonged and happy life, to achieve name and fame, for progeny, one has to listen to that recitation of udaka shanty mantras. These mantras are very powerful and can purify our minds and the surrounding environment. Udaka shanty leterally means rendering peace through water.
Udaka shanti is one of the important karmas and has the essence of the Vedas. Udaka shanty belonging to Krishnayajur veds was rendered by Sage Bodhayana. Udaka shanty comprises of mantras and sacred chants from Agni, the God of fire to Lord Vishnu. Mantras related to all the deities governing all nakshatras and individual mantras are also recited. Later abhishekam is performed and the theertham of the sacred water is distributed to the devotees. We perform Udaka Shanti pooja in your name and with your specific desire or sankalpa.
You can get rid of all problems and seek peace and prosperity in all your endeavours and personal life.