Essence Of
Dharma Sindhu

            T R I T I Y A  P A R I C C H E D A  ( P U R V A B H A A G A )



Pradhama Rajo Darshana

While the ‘Prathama Pariccheda’ of Dharma Sindhu described noramal Tithi and such other ‘nirnayaas’ and the Dwiteeya Pariccheda delineated the Month-wise and other special aspects by way of a Ground-Work references, the Purva Bhaaga of the Threteeya Pariccheda seeks to intricate details of Dharma Jnaana of human life right from the stage of Prathama Rajaswala, Garbhadhaana, Seemanta, Prasavana, Jaata Karma, Naama karana, Anna Praasana, Chudaa Karma, Vidyaarambha, Upanayana, Brahmachaari Dharmaas to Vivaaha and Grihasta Dharmaas besides innumerable features related thereto in the following pages. But before describing these aspects, a brief note on the Shrouta and Smarta Karmasas prescribed in Vedas would be useful since there would be references in the course of this ‘Pariccheda’.

[Note for general information: Rituals like Upanayana,Vivaha, Griha Pravesha etc. are called Shrouta Karmas and Agnihotra, Ishti, Soma Yaaga are Shrouta Karmas as performed by Vidwaans or

Learned Pandits or Agnihotris.Shrouta Yagnas comprise twenty kinds in three categories viz. Paaka Yagnas, Havir Yagnas and Soma Yagnas. Paaka Yagnas comprise Aouposana, Vaishwa Deva, Paarvana, Ashtaka, Shravana Karma, Agrayana, Chaitri /Ashwiyuja. Havir Yagnas are of seven kinds of Agnihotra, Darshana, Purnaaseshthi, Agrayana, Chaturmasya, Niruda pratibandha, Soutramani, and Pinda Pitra Yagna. Soma Yagas are Agnishtoma, Atyaagnishtoma, Utya, Shodashi,Vaajapeya, Atiraatra and Aptoryama]


For the‘Prathama Rajo Darshana’( or the first commencement of the menstrual cycle)  of a girl, the ‘Dushta Maasaa-Tithi- Vaara- Nakshatra-Kaalaas’ are illustrated as follows: Chaitra-Jyeshtha-Aashaadha-Bhadrapada-Kartika and Pousha Maasaas are adverse months. Pratipaada-Ashtami- Shashthi-Dwadashi-Purnimaas are Rikta (negative and void) Tithis. Chaturthi, Navami and Chaturdashi are ‘Arishta Pradaas’ or prone to dangers. The inauspicious days are Ravi, Mangala and Shani Vaaraas while adverse Nakshatras are  Bharani, Krittika, Ardra, Aaslesha, Magha, the  ‘Purvaatara-Traya’ or Purva Phalguni-Purvaashaadha and Purvaabhaadra; Vishaakha and  Jyeshtha; all these Days and Stars are influenced by hostile yogas viz. Vishkambha, Ganda, Ati Gada, Shula, Vyaaghaata, Vajra, Parigha, Vytatipata, Purvaartha and Naidhruti. The undesirable  occasions of the Prathama Rajo darshana also include at the Vishti Karana or malefic  time or Sandhya kaala,  Aparaahna or during sleep; while wearing jeerna vastraas or torn garments, blood red clothes, or blue coloured robes or chitra vastraas; or in ‘Nagna dasha’(nudity) and while in somebody else’s house or out of one’s own village of township. Again, in case the flow of  ‘Rajas’ is too little or excessive  or in black and similar shades of colour then too there are contrary effects. If this occurs when carrying a broom stick, dry grass or wooden poles then the person concerned would become  characterless. If the number of blood drops on the clothes worn are odd then she would secure Putra Laabha or other wise  Kanyaa Laabha! The first of the Rajasvala should be blessed , seated on a mat, surrounded by elderly Suvaasini Strees, treated to her with Haridraa-Kumkuma-Gandha-Pushpa Maala-Tambula-Deepa-Nirajana drishti parichaaraas and distribute and Salted Moong among the visiting Suvasinis from the neighbourhood. There after she should not be touched for  three days and nights, should not have Abhyangana, day time sleep, Danta dhaavana or cleaning of teeth, Agni Sparsha, Suryaavalokana or looking at Surya, drawing lines on Earth are strictly forbidden. She should sleep on a mat on the ground. Drinking of water or liquids in palmfuls or coppe or steel containers are taboo. If drinking in small containers the result would be the birth of pigmies or short-statured progeny. Biting nails would end up with children with rotten nails. Drinking water in leaves would  result in the birth of unsound-minded kids. With the second and subsequent Rajo darshanaas, the Do’s and Dont’s include refrain from travels, use of Gandha Maalaas, Taamboola sevana,consumption of Go-Ksheera-curd-Buttermilk; seating on raised seats, Grahana Snaana, eating while seated on ground in steel or earthen plates or vessels,  drinking liquids and after snaana washing clothes, mutual touch of persons especially of same Gotra or blood relations the atonement of which would be Shuddhodaka snaana of the one touched by th girl in menses;  consciously touching the girl requires day long Upavasa; mutual sparsha of two females in the same state would call for Upavasa til their Shuddhi Snaana and so on. Praayascchitaas of touching females in menses range from Shuddhodaka Snaanaas to Pancha Gavya Seva, Upavasaas, Praajaapatya Krucchra Vrataas and Brahmana Bhojanaas as Dharma Sindhu elaborates  the seriousness of the extent to which the Rajaswalaas are touched by other women, men, other caste’s persons, animals, birds and inanimate objects like brooms, wooden materials, grass and so on. The calculation of regular three day menses is determined by dividing the duration of a night into three parts and its occurrence in the first two parts ie upto midnight is reckoned as on the previous day or if it is past midnight then the following day is taken as the first day. The same rules apply in the case of Births and Deaths also as in respect of Rajaswalaas. In the case of those females who have been Rajasvalaas normally with the gap of thirty days happen to witness menses within a span of seventeen days, then they could as well have their Shuddhi Snaana straight away; in such cases of month-long regulars, the cycle of mentstruation commences in the eighteenth day, then they should observe one night’s menses and obtain Shuddhi on the following day;  the nineteenth day recurrence prescribes two days of observance and on twenty days onward the recurrence of menses requires three day observance.  In the case of  occurrence say with a normal cycle of a fortnight,  then the tenth day repetition of menses requires instant bath only while recurrence on the eleventh and twelfth days provides Shuddhi after the observance of two and three days respectively.However such short-cut observances would not allow admission to Pitru Kartyaas and partnerships of Homa Karyas along with husbands if married. In the case of females with irregular cycles and with complicted illnesses or  of frequency or undue  delays,  the forbidden acts of auspicious nature must  precede attainment of eligibility by Upavaasaas and Shanti karmas. Now, after observing the three day period of menses, the fourth day’s procedure requires Dantadhaavanaadi karmas Shuddhi Snaanaas which must be done well before Suryodaya. In case Rajospatti ceases, then she could take up normal duties  while the fifth day would be suitable for all kinds of Deva-Pitru duties expected of a Kanya or as a Grihasti as the case that might be. On the fourth day itself if possible Garbhaadhaana is performed with ten Snaanaas followed by Shuddha Vastra dharana, Punyaahvachana, Griha Shuddhi, Brahmana Bhojana, Shanti Vachana and Bhuvaneshwari Puja and Shanti as per traditions. During the Surya Grahana, Rajodarshana requires daana of a golden  Surya Bimba preceded by Surya Puja and Rahu Puja and Daana of Rajita  patra in Chandra Grahana preceeded by Samidha Homaas.

Saamaanya Smartha Karmas: The normal Smarta Karmas of Grihastis after the Rajasvalatwa of a married woman, the set procedure involves: Sankalpa, Swasti Vaachana, Brahmana Varana, Bhuta nissaarana, Bhumi Shuddhi with Panchagavyaas, Mukhya Devataa Pujana, Agnisthapana, Suryaadi Graha Sthaapana and Pujaas, Anvaadhaana or the act of depositing Aajya to the Sacred Fire for Devataas, Paatraasaadana, Havishya kruti, and such others before Nava Homaas, Bali, Purnaahuti, Purna Paatra Daana, Devata Pujana and Visarjana, Ashirvaada grahana,  Daana Dakshina and Ishwaraarpana.

Patni gamana Vichaara: Patni gamana before Rajo darshana is stated to be worse than Brahma Hatyaa Dosha. But Rutou thu ganamaavashyakam, Anyathaa Bhruna hatyaa doshah! ( Soon after the menstrual period, Stree Sangama is compulsory lest the husband would have committed ‘Bhruna Hathya’!)  Bhava Prakaasha Grandha described:  Snaatahchandana liptaanagah Sugandha sumanor- chitah, Bhuktavrushyah Suvasanah Suveshah samalankritih/ Taamboola vadanasmitasyaa manuraktodhikahsmarah, Putraarthi Purosho naarimupeyaacchayaney shubhey! (Those men who are highly desirous of  sons should bathe to be  clean and attractive, smear sugandha-chandana all over the body, wear garlands of fresh and scented flowers and attractive / clean attire, beautify  to present themselves as smart and energetic; consume milk, fruits and other envigorating food items and await the arrival of life partner in a soft and luxurious bed. So should be the woman awaiting her sweet husband!) This practice has to be followed each night for sixteen days excepting however the fourth, elevent and the thirteenth day, preferably on alternative nights; those who desire for sons would opt for Sama Sankhya days and those font of begetting girls  would select odd days during these sixteen nights. But only one ‘sangama’ is preferred on a night. Also, if the feminine partner so desires even indicatively if not provocatively, the male partner must approve . If however, a person is sick, or in prison,or travel or if his wife is old, barren, characterless, or has too many children then  a male is excused from copulating his wife. Nevertheless, the following days are forbidden of the Stree Sangama viz. Ashtami, Chaturdashi, Purnima, Amaavasya, Surya Sankraanti, Vyatipaata, Parigha purvaartha, Vishti, Sandhyaa Kaala, Mataa-Pitru Mrita dina, Shraadha dina and its earlier day, Janma Nakshatra and Dina kaala or day time.

Garbhaadhaana Kaala Nirnaya and Vidhi : Barring Chaturthi, Shashthi, Chaturdashi, Ashtami, and Purnima all other Tithis are auspicious for the task. Soma- Budha- Guru and Shukra Vaaraas are excellent. Moola- Magha- Revati- Jyeshtha Nakshatras are adverse. Bharani-Krittika- Asresha- Ardra-Purvaphalguni-Purvashadha-Purvabhaadra and Vishakha are passable and the rest are all excellent. In the context of Gochaara, Chandrabala is important. In other words, Chandra’s position from the Janma Rashi’s twelve places would accord the following results respectively viz. Good Food, Poverty, Happiness, Illness, Failures, Prosperity, Stree Laabha, Death, Raaja bhaya, contentment , gain of wealth, and loss of wealth. It is however clarified that even if Chandra is in the second, fifth and ninth positions too, then Chandra-bala would be satisfactory. Garbhaadhaana Homa in the Prathama Ritu needs to be performed in the ‘Gruhyaagni’or House Agni itself but in the second and onward Ritus, Gruhyaagni homa is not required. In case there is no Gruhyaagni then Garbhadhaana be performed by Mantra Pathana by the self or by Brahmanas. Garbhaadhaana Sankalpa states: Mamaasyaam Bharyaayam Samskaaraatishaya dwaarasyaam janishyamaana  Sarvagarbhaanaam Beeja garbha samudbhavainonibarhana dwaara Shri Parameshwara preetyartham garbhaadhaanaa -khya karma kartishye/ ( MayBhagavan be pleased with  this Garbha of my wife and the future Garbhaas from her bija garbha so that it gets purified of sins and blemishes; with this Sankalpa the Garbhaadhaana Karma is being  proposed). The Sankalpa would be followed by Punyaahvaachana, Maatrukaa Pujana, Naandi Shraaddha and so on by the blessings of Devas to accomplish the Samskaara till the end. After the Punyahvachana, may Bhagavan Brahma and the Anga Devataas be pleased too and so should be Agni, Surya, Prajapati and all the rest! Puja of  Devi Gauri and Maatrikaas is an integral part of Naandi Shraaddha; first Maatruka ( Maatru- Maataamahi-Prapitaamahi Puja and Paarvana followed by Pitru (Pitra-Pitaamaha- Prapitaamaha) Paarvana and Patni sahita  Naanaa Paarvana are all the constituents of Naandi Shraadda; in the Naandi Shraaddha the word ‘Swaahaa’ is pronounced but not ‘Swadha’. All the Naandi Shraaddha Karmas are required to be perfomed with Savya Yagopaveeta. For each Paarana there must be two Brahmanaas to represent the Vishwa Devaas. There must be in all nine Brahmanaas viz two to represent Vishwa Devas, one to represent Vishnu, and thee each to Maatru and Pitruganaas. Minimum four might perhaps suffice. In Vriddhi Shraaddha when the father of the Karta or the husband of the Garbhini woman is alive then  Kratu Daksha naamaka Vishva Deva is represented while the other Vishva Deva named Satya Vasu represents  the various other Karmas like Soma Yaga, Garbhaadhaana, Pumsavana, Seemantotrayana, Aadhaana etc. Naandi Shraaddha is  to  be compulsorily obsereved in all the functions like in the ‘Samskaaraas’ such as Garbhaadhaana, Vaapideva Pratishtha, Apurva Aadhaana and such other Karmaas, Sanyaasaashrama Sweekarana, Kaamya Vrishotsarga, Griha Pravesha, Shravanaa Karma, Sarpa Bali, Aashviyuja and Aagrayanaadi Paaka Sansthaa’s Opening Ceremonies. Of course, Shravanaa Karma and Naandi Shraaddha are optional in functions other than   Garbha –adhaana, Pumsavana, Seemotannayana, Choula, Upanayana, and Vivaaha. Naandi Shraaddha is to be performed in a different way in respect of Jaata Karma and Putra Janana functions. If Jaata Karma is to be performed at Janma kaalaa itself, then the Sankalpa is to be made only once saying: Putra janma nimittam Jaatakarmaangamcha Vriddhi Shraaddham tantrena karishye/ In case, Jaata Karma  is to be at the same time of Nama Karma which normally is the practice, then Putra Janana Nimitta Karma is also tagged on at the same time. Then the Sanlkalpa could be : Putrajanma nimittakam Jaatakar-maadi Choulaanta Samskaaraangabhutam cha Naandi Shraaddha tantrena karishye/ Hence, Choulaadi Karmaas be tied up with other Karmaas also and Naandi Shraaddha need not be performed again and again. Now, Vriddho Shraaddha assumes that it is performed only when the Kartha’s father nis alive as already mentiond earlier; the decision in this regard states:  Jeevettu yadi Vargaadyastam vargantu parityajet/ On this analogy Naandi Shraaddha is to be amended:In case both father and mother are alive, the Parvana is only for Mother’s father; similarly if father and grand father are alive then the Uccharana should be Pitaamahasya Maatru pitaamah prapitaamahyah/ ; in this case, the Sankalpa is as from the Self himself. Incidentally, the presence of Vishva Deva –to be represented by extra Brahmana for the Parayana-is not necessary if the Naandi Shraaddha is not  for Matru Parayana.  

After the Naandi Shraaddha ending up with ‘Swasti Vaachana’  in the presence of Kratu Daksha of Vishwa Devas, actual Garbhaadhana Samskaara  would resume as per the traditions of Shakkhaas. Rigvedis / Ashwaayana Shaakha follow the practice of performing Praajaapatya Charu Homa to Bhagavan Vishnu six times and once to Prajaa Pati by offering ‘Ghritaahuti’ and even without Japopasthaana, do perform however ‘Karanaadis’. Then as per the Vachana or Statement viz. Vishnuryonim japet suktam yonim spurushtwaatribhirvrati, Gharbhaadhaanam tathah kuryaat Suputro jaayatey dhruvam/ (The Karta would then touch the Jaghana of the Garbhini Stree and repeat the Mantra thrice viz. Vishnuryonim kalpayatu/ , meaning thereby : ( May this Samskaara result in the birth of a male child!) After the necessary  homaas, drops of Asagandha Rasa an Ayurvedic Preparation from the Semen/ urine of a male cat be administered into the right nose of the Garbhini. and the Karta has to take bath after the Sanskaara but not the Garbhini since : Shayanaadhyutaa Naari Shuchisyaadashuchih pumaan/ ( A woman waking up from bed is clean but not a male!). It was also stated :  Tailaabhyaktastwanaachaanta smashru karnani Maithuney, Mutrotchaaram yadaakuryaa dahoraatrena shuddhyati/ ( A male has to physically purify himself after Tailaabhyangana or Oil Bath, hair cut, passing urine and must execute ‘Aachamana’or otherwise observe Upavaasa!

Having thus concluded the ‘Garbhaadhaana Prayoga’, the Karta has to perform Narayana Bali  intended to ward off  ‘Pretopadrava’ or Evil Spirits seeking to obstruct easy delivery of a child, especially a boy. Narayana Bali is best done on Shukyaikaadashi or Purnima with the Sankalpa of: Madeeya kulaabhivriddhi pratibandhaka Pretasya Pretatya nivruthyaertham Naraayana balim karishye! (I hereby resolve to offer Narayana Bali to purge the Pretatwa which hinders the promotion of my Vamsha). As per procedure, two Pratimas of Vishnu and Vaivaswata  Yama are installed and invoked in two Kumbhaas, Vishnu Sukta and ‘Yamaaya Somam’ Mantra ate recited and ‘Shodashopachaaraas’ implimented. Some  perform Puja to five Pratimas of Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva, Yama and Preta.The Karta then keeps South faced ‘Kushaagra’ on the Vishnu Rupi Preta in prachhnaaveeti position of Yagnopateeta  and recite: Shudhantaam Vishnu Rupi Preta.Then  ‘prokshana’or/ sprinkling water mixed with honey and oil is effected  on ten pindaas pointing out the specific Pratima of Preta stating that it was of Kaashyapa gotra’s Vishnudatta Preta. After due Puja, the Karta achieves Visarjana and Snaana. On the night that follows he should obeserve Jaagarana and Upavasa and  treat Bhojana and Daanaas to three or five Brahmanas on the next morning.

Naaga Bali is proposed to rescind troubles on accont of ‘Sarpaas’. This Vrata may  be posted to an Amavasya, Purnima or Panchami in the presence of a Sabha or congregation of Invitees. The Karta would address the Sabha: Sabhaaryasyamameha janmani janmaantarevaajaata SarpaVadha Dosha pariharaardha praayaschittamupavishantu bhavantah; Sarvey Dharma vivaktaarah/  ( Kindly guide me and my wife as to how to atone the sin of killing snakes either in our current or past births). Then the elders of the Sabha would advise the Karta that the Prayaschitta would be to execute Fourteen Krucchya Vratas or such other Vratas to achieve Shuddhi; however considering the current trends of Desha-Kaala Situations the Karta might tone down the Prayaschitta by fully shaving the head and  after obtaining Guru’s directive gives away a Daana of a metal rod with Dakshina and on making a Pratima  of a Sarpa with the paste of wheat flour and tila kept  on a dry leaf sieve, invoke it as follows: Ehi purva mrutam sarpam asminpishthey samaavisha, Samskaaraartha maham bhaktya praarthamaham sampradatey/ ( Sarpa! You were already killed by me, do now enter into this sieve. I shall render ‘Samskaara’ or purification of your soul and as such do accept my worship). After satisfying the Shodshopa-chaaraas, the Sarpa is addressed as follows:  Namostu sarvebhyo ye kecha Prithivimanu, Yey Antarikshey ye divityebhyah Sarpebhyo namah/ Ye  dorochaney divo ye vaa Suryasya rashmishu, Yeshaamapsu Sadhakrutam tebhyam/ Yaa ishavo dhaatu dhaanaamam yeva Vanaspateegumranu/ Ye vaavateshu sheratey tebhyah/ Traahi traahi Mahabhogin Sarpopadrava duhkhatah, Satatam dehi mey Punyaam nirdushtaam deergha jeevineem/Prapannam paahimaam Bhaktyaa Krupaalo Deenavatsala, Jnaanatojnaanato Vaapi krutam  Sarpam vadhomaya/  Janmaantarey tathai tasmin matpurva thavaa Vibho, Tatpaaam naashaya kshipramaparaatham  kshamaswamey / ( My obeisances to the Snakes at ll possible places either on Earth or Skies. Maha Sarpa!Do save me from all kinds of tribulations and grant me and my progeny with long life. Do pardon me or my earier generations for their irrseponsible acts of cruelty of killing Sarpas in the past knowingly or unknowlingly ) Thus the Naaga Bali Karta should take bath for purification of Self and wife , make ‘vyahrities’ or offerings to Agni Deva with ghee, and accomplish the full  course of worship for three days and nights and  on the last day complete Brahmana Bhojana and Dakshina- Daanaas. Thus: Kritaa Sarpasya samskaara manena vidhinaa Narah, Virogo jaayatey kshipram santaim labhatey shubham/ (Thus on the conclusion of  the Naaga Bali / Naaga Samskaara, the Kartas are blessed to get rid of all diseases and achieve the  destruction of the  full Scare of Serpents).  The Final Prayer states: Brahma lokecha ye Sarpaah Seshanaaha purogamaah, Namostu tebhyah supreetaah Prasannah santumey sadaa/ Vishnu lokeca ye Sarpaa Vasukhi pramukhaascha ye Namostu,Rudra lokey cha ye Sarpaastakshaka pramukhaatathaa namostu/ etc. ( My greetings to all the Sarpas like Sesha Naaga, Vaasukhi and Taksha in Brahma-Vishnu- Rudra Lokaas). Our Salutations are also those were  saved from Khandava Vana, saved by Astika from Sarpa Yagna, from Vaitarini, Bhuloka, Pataala, mountain caves, villages etc. Do protect us and  bestow long life and health . Thus with the conclusion of the Naga Bali, Garbhadhaana  Samskara is fully accomplished!

Details of Krucchrama Vrata: In the case of persistent barrenness of a married woman, Hari Vamsha Purana Shravana and allied Vratas are of far reaching significance. These are to be observed for six or four or three or atleast one and half years and perform Prayaschitta . This involves thirty Krucchrama Vrataas a Year, and each Krucchrama comprises diksha for twelve days; on the first day, the Bhojana at the noon only once a day is called ‘Eka Bhakta’ that too twenty six fistfulls; twenty two fistfuls in the second night; twenty four  fistfulls at any time on the third day; and full Upavasa or food only at night  on the fourth day . This circle is called Paada Krucchra. Thice over this is called Praajaapatya Krucchra.  Two Eka Bhaktaas  are called Nakta.  Two Ayaachita ( or without seeking any specified thing to consume from any body) Upavaasaas or three Yaachita Upavasaas or  consuming specified  material to eat  are called  Ardha Krucchraas. Ekabhakta-Nakta-Ayaachita Upavaasaas of three hundred times are called Paadona Krucchra. Of these if nine days are observed  eating small amount of  unspecified food then that type of Vrata is named  Ati Krucchra. Consumption of just one gulp of milk only to keep alive as ‘Praanaadhaara’ or life saving for twenty one days is called Krucchaati Krucchra. In case, consumption of Panchagavyaas or the remains of a cow viz. milk, curd, ghee, urine and  excrement  along with Kushodaka or kushaas with water;  or two Upavaasaas are designated as Saantapana Krucchra. The consumption of the same mix of materials plus one Upavasa  on seven days is called Mahaasaantapana Krucchra. Consumption of Panchagavyaas in equal proportions on three days continuously is known as Atisaanpana Krucchra. Consumption of hot ghee, milk and plain water one by one on three separate days in a row with additional Upavaasaas on further three additional days is called Tapta Krucchra. Similar consumption of cold items is known as Seeta Krucchra. Continuous Upavaasa for twelve days ie. eating in the night is known as Paraaka Kruucchra. Increasing the intake of one egg-sized food by day from Pratipada to Purnima and decreasing the intake by each ege-ful food from Krishna Paksha Pratipaada to Darsha or Amavasya is designated as Chaandraayana Vrata.  Observing this Vrata in Shudda Paksha is noted as Ava- Madhya Chandraayana and in Krishna Paksha only is called Pipilikaa Madhya Chandrayana. In all the Krucchrama Vrataas, Vrata-Purti Snaanaas or Terminal baths need to be observed as per their time-specifications.

Praajaapatya Vrata: Those who are not capable of observing Praajaapatya Vrata might as well implement Gayatri Japa by ten thousand times  or alternatively perform Tila-Homa with one thousand Gayatris. Other ‘Pratyaamnaas’ or alternatives to this Vrata are: two hundred Praanaayaamaas; Dwadashi Brahmana Bhojana; twelve Snaanaas in a Tirtha but each time after the drying of head-hairs; Veda Samhitaa Paaraayana; Yatra covering of four kroshaas, or one yojana or  13-16 kms; twelve thousand ‘Saashtaanga’ namaskaaraas; hundred thirty two Pranaayaamaas plus one day / night Upavaasa while standing facing the East; Ekaahika Krucchra with the consumption of Yaavaka bhakshana in go-mutra; recital of ‘Dwaadasha Rudram’ called by some as one Krucchhra; or Paavakeshti, or Paavamaaneshti; or six Upavaasaas in a row. These indeed  are considered as the alternatives of the Praajaapatya Vrata. By way of clarification, it may be said that one Upavas may equate one Brahmana Bhojana. In the case of extreme inability, the last-resort Pratyaamnaaya could be Sahasra Gayatri Japa, or twelve Pranaayaamaas. If one is not able to observe Praajaapatya at all, one could give away the Daana of a milch-cow to a Brahmana. If such Go-Daanaa is not possible,  the equivalent price of gold or silver be provided; if not, Annadaana might be an alternative proposition . The prescribed number of Go daanaas are: two in lieu of Ati Krucchra or Saantapana Kruccha; three Go Daanaas instead of Paraaka Krucchra or Tapta Krucchra; four Go daanaas in respect of   Krucchaati Krucchra; and in place of Chandraayana Vrata, the Go-Daanaas might be eight, or five, or four or three. For ‘Maasaanta-Payovrata’ the number is five Go Daanaas and finally, in the context of Go-Mutra Yaavaka Vrata, five Go Daanaas are prescribed.

Prayaschitta for Putra Praapti: Dharma Sindhu instructed an elaborate prescription stated brieflly as follows: The Karta of the Praayaschitta Vrata for Santana Prapti  should first approach a Pandita Sabha and pray that he and his wife be advised the  details of the procedure of Praayaschitta since they should have committed sins either in their current birth or the past births due to ‘Bala ghaata’or killing children or ‘Vipra dhanaapahaara’ stealing  possessions of virtuous Brahmanaas. As the elders in the Sabha counselled to perform Prayaschitta for six or three or atleast one year. Accordingly, the couple make the Sanlakpa:  Mama Sabhaaryasyaitajjanma janmaantara arjitaanapaytatva mritaapatyatwadi nivaasa bhuta bala ghataVipraratnaapahaaraaradi janya durita samoola naashaka karma vipaakokta vidhinaadhikaara siddhidwaaraa deerghaayushmadbahuputraadi santati praapta yeshadabdamtryabdam saardhaardhamabdam vaa praayaschittam, purvottaraanga sahitamuka pratyaamnaayaye naahamaacharishye! After the Sankalpa, the Karta would have his head and nails cut and taken Snaana with the Mantra Aayurbalam Yashvarchah Prajaa pashu vasunicha, Brahma pragnaam cha medhaamccha twam no dehi Vanaspatey/  and perform ‘Danta dhaavana’ with neem stick and prepare himself for ten kinds of ‘Snaanaas’ like Bhasma Snaana, Gomaya Snaana, Mrittikaa Snaana and Jala Snaanaas with specified materials. Bhasma Snaana Mantra: Ishaanaaya namah ( on  head), Tatpurushaaya namah (on face) Aghoraaya namah (on Hridaya), Vaaanaayana namah ( at the Guhya), Sadyojaataaya (on feet) and Om (on Sarvaanga). Then Gomaya Snaanaby taking Gomaya in hand and spray it toward South and North with Pranava OM, utter Maanastoka Mantara as Abhi Mantra, and smear all over the body with the Mantra:Gandhadwaaraam dhuraa dharshaam nitya pushtaam kareeshineem, Ihwariigum  Sarva bhutaanaam taa mihopahvaye shriyam/ and do two ‘Aachamanaas’.Mrittikaa Snaana:  Take Mrittika in hand showing to Surya with Namo Mitrasya and perform Abhi Mantra with : Ashwa kraantey Rathakraantey Vishnu kraantey Vasundharey/ Shirasaa dhaara  ishyaami rakshaswamaam padey padey/ Thereafter take Mrittikaa in hand with the Mantra: Uddhrutaasi Varaahena krishnena Shata baahunaa, Mrittikey haramey paapam yanmayaa  dushkrutam krutam/ and display the mrittika to Surya and smear it from head to toe with Syona Prithivi Mantra and have two ‘Aachamanaas’. Jala Snaanaas: Against  a Jala Pravaaha or the currents  of a river or water body , looking at Surya Deva on the Sky, the Karta should recite: Aapo asmaa -niktutwaa Bhaskaraabhi mukhah stitah, Idam Vishnurjapitwaa cha pratisrotoni majjati/  (I take bath against the currents of the water flow and facing Surya Deva while doing Vishnu Japa!) Then perform Snaanas five times with each of the Pancha Gavyaas and the sixth Snaana with Kushodaka.  On the banks of the watrer-flow,  he should install Agni after Go-Pradakshina and Go-daana and perform Homa Vyahritis one hundred eight times with ghee and each component of Pancha Gayvaas to Vishnu, Rudra, Devi, Prajapati, Pancha Bhutas and Eight Directions and additional twenty eight ‘Aahutis’ as Anvaadhaana or as informalities. Following the Snaanas and Homaas, the Karta and his wife should then perform Sankalpa to accomplish Hari Vamsha Grandha Shravana from a Pandita Brahmana preceded by Ganesha Puja, Swasti Vachana, Naandi Shraaddha, Vinayaka Shanti etc. and execute Brahmana Puja, Vastraalankarana, Brahmana Bhojana etc. During these days of Hari Vamsha Shravana the Karta should observe abstinence of Taila- Kshavara- Tamboola Sevana-Bharyaa mithunaadi karyas but follow the rules of Dainika Havishya Bhojana –Dakshina-Daanaadis etc. To ensure Santaana Vriddhi, following auspicious deeds are required viz. Daana of a Golden/ Silver Sishu Pratima in a swing, Vrishabha daana, Vivaha of a Brahmana  or Brahmana Putri, Maha Rudrajapa, Laksha Padma puja to Shivga, Go Vatsa Daana, Parthiva Linga Puja with Abhilaashaashtaka Stotra and such other Shubha Karyaas.  

Dattata (Adoption) –Eligibility and Procedure:  In respect of Brahmanaas, the first preference for adoption is for the Karta’s own brother or his ‘Sapindi’ and ‘Sagotri’,  or for the son of wife’s brother or sister, failing which, somebody of  the same Gotra of the Karta. But the son of the Karta’s sister  or his daughter’s son are not agreeable.  As regards those other than Brahmanas, the general principle appears to be that adoption is preferred only to a person of the same Varna and inclination should be of the same region say of Andhra or Ghurjara. But the person under consideration for adoption should have brothers but nor elder to him. While these regulations were very often ignored and the ‘Vaidika Paddhati’ is more disrespected in practice than in observance. The only criterion is stated to be mutual agreement and formal approval of the Kingship or of the Ruling Government; in the formal way Upanayanaadi Samskaaraas are performed and ‘Putratwa’ is legalised and declared socially, although Brahmanas and a few other Varnas continue to recognise the institution of Dattata as of the present. All the same, to the extent of the continuance of the Institution of Dattata, both Rigvedis and Yagurvedis follow their own own Vedic procedure of Dattata as follows:  

Rigvedis in the context of ‘Dattata Swikaara’ observe Upavasa on the previous day and on the day next in the presence of Brahmana Panditaas make the Sankalpa: Mamaaprajatwa prayuta Pitru  runaapaakarana Punnaama Narakatraana dwaraa  Shri Parameshwara preetyartham Shounakokta Vidhinaa Putra prati graham karishye, Tadangetwena Swasti Vaachanam Achaarya varanam Vishnu Pujanamanna daanam karishye/ ( May the precollected  fund of my Pitru Runa that  necessitated the sufferance of Punnama Naraka of my ancestors leading to my inability to secure pitrutwa now be overcome as I am now committing myself to follow the Vrata as per the instructions of Shounaka Muni to initiate Swasti Vaachana, Selection of Acharya, Vishnu Puja and Annadaana). Then the ‘Putra Pratigrahaanga homa’ be performed; then follows Agni Pratishtha, Chakshusi Aajyena,  homaas to Surya, Savitri, Agni, Vaayu, Prajapati and so on. Twenty eighty Anvaadaanaas are performed around Agni and Acharya seeks permission to start  Ganapati Puja are five Ruks  are recited. The Putra daata would then declare: Imam putram tava Paitrukarunaapaakarana punnaama naraka traan siddhyatham Aatmanah Shri Parameshwara preetyartham tubhyamaham sampradadena mama pratigrunnaat putram bhavaan /  (I am now offering this son of mine to you so that he would remove the Pitru Runa and save you and your earlier generations from the pangs of Punnama Naraka as per the prescribed vidhaana and in the evidence of Agni and the rest of all other Devas as also the Bhagavan Himself; from now on this boy is your own son), so saying the Daata would pour water in the palms of the Pratigraheeta. The Reciever of the son would place the child on his thigh, smell the boy’s head and pass on the child to his wife when other formalities of Geeta vaadyas, Swasti Mantraas, Shanti Vachanaas, Ajya homaas, Asirvaaachanaas by Guru and Sabha Brahmanas,   Dakshina Daanaas to the Vipras, Bhojanaas  and other celebtations would follow.

Yajurvedis: On obtaining the approval of the King, Relatives and Seniors among the invitees, the proceedings of the Dattata  Ceremony of Yajurvedis would follow the procedure of the Rigvedis mentioned as above except the Putra Daata makes the Sankalpa for Acharya Puja, Brahmana Bhojana and Acharya’s preparation for Deva Yajana by drawing the lines of the Yagna Sthala. Then the Putra Patigrahita requests the Daata saying Putram mey dehi/  Then Daata makes the Sankalpa again  and continues the Shubha Kaarya upto Putra Daana as in the case of Rigvedis. Then the Pratigrahita receives the child stating: Dharmaayatwaata grihnaami santathayaitwaa grihnaami/ He decorated the child with Vastra-Kundala-Anguleekaas. The Purvaanga Homa continues by the Acharya and recites Yatwaahridaakeerina  and yasmaitwam sukrutey  and the Aajya Homa continues with Vyasta samasta vyaahriti homa and swishta kritaadi karmaas. At the end the Acharya announces the details of the Daata and Pratigraheeta along with their Gotras.

For the Dutta Putra’s Vivaha, all the previous  Gotra / Pravara Smaranaas  should be scrupulously avoided as the Karmaas like Saapidya, Saapta Pourusha and Paancha pourusha niyamaas do not seem to be applicable. In case the Dutta Putra’s Upanayana was  already performed with the Janaka Gotra, then in the  Janaka Pitru Maatru cases the tradition of Saapindya, Saapta Pourusha and Paancha Pourushaas are relevant. In case the Upanayana only of the Griheeta’s gotra then there should be Pancha  Purusha’s of the Griheeta Kula and Thee Purushaas of the Maatru Kula. But if the Dutta Putra’s Jaata karmaadupanayanaas are all performed by the Griheeta, then Sapta Pourushaas in the Paternal side and five purushas on the Maternal side are effected  accordingly.

Putra Kaameshti Yagna: This is a highly Mantra-oriented Vrata with  intensity of  Agni-Homaas aiming at the birth of a son even if a couple has daughters only. On the sixth day after the menses of his wife, the Karta as ‘Sa Bharya’ settles after Abhyangana and Pranayaamas and intiates Sankalpa of Putra Kaamah Putra Kaameshthim karishye followed by Swasti Vaachanaas, Naandi Shraaddha and Agni Pratishtha initiated with the Mantra : Chakshuhi Aajyenaatra pradhaanam, Agnim Pancha Vaaram Varunam Pancha Vaaram Vishnum Prithivim Vishnum Somam Suryaa Saaitreem paayasena sheshena swishta kritam/  ie. by the Aajyaas or offerings of ‘Payasa’ to the Main Agni five times, to Varuna five times and to Vishnu Prithivi,  Vishnu Soma, Surya and Savitri  and perform Swishta kruta and so on. During the ‘nirvapapana’ or the interval/  inactive time, silently cook ‘charu’ (ghee,  milk of white cow with white calf and grains) and place sixty fistfulls of Rupaas at the Yaajya bhaaga and  make Pancha dashaahutis (fifteen oblations) to Agni with the following Mantras:

Om Aatey Garbho yonimaitu punaanbaana ivaishudhim, Aaveero jaayataam putrastey dashamaasyah swaahaa/ Agnaya idam namah/

Karomitey praajaapatyamaa garbho yonimaitutey, Anunah putro jaayataamashlono pishaacha dheeta swaahaa/ Agnim idam namah/

Pumaamstey putro naastim pumaananujaayataam, Taani bhadraani beejaanrushabha jayantunou swaaha/ Idam namah/ Agnayah/

Yaani bhadraani beejaanrushabhaa janayantinah, Taistwam putraanvidaswa saa prasudhenukaa bhava swaahaa/ Agnayah idamnamah/

Kaamahssamrudbhyataam mahdyamaparaajitameva mey, Yam kaamam kaamaye Devatam me vaayo samarthaya swaahaa /Agnayam idam namah/

Agniraitu prathamo Devataanaam Sosyai Prajaam munchatu  Mrityu paashaat, Tadayam Raajaa Varunonumayataam yatheyam Streepoutramagham na rodaatswaahaa/ Varunaayedam/

Imaamagnistraayataam Gaarhapatyah Prajaamasyai nayatu deerghamaayuh, Ashunyopasthaa jeevataasmatu Maataa poutra maanandamabhi prabuddhyataamiyam swaahaa/ Varunaayedam/

Maatey gruhe nishi ghosha uttaadanyatra twadyabhyutyah samvishantu, Maatwam vikeshyura Aavadhishtaa jeevapatni Patilokey, Viraaja pashyanti Prajaah sumanasyamaanaa swaahaa/ Varunayedam/Aprajastaam poutra mrityum paapmaanamrutamaagham, Sheershanah srajamivonmuchyadvisha dabhayah pratimunchami paasham swaahaa/ Varunayedam /

Devakrutam Brahmanam kalpamaanam tena hanmiyonishadah pishaachaan/ Kravyaado  mrityuna gharaanpaatayaami deerghaayustwa jeevantu putraah swaahaa/ Varunaayedam/

Nejamesheti tisrunaam Vishnustwashtaa garbha kartaa Vishnu prithivi

Vishnuyonanushthup, Nneja mesham, Vishnuva , yatheyam prithivi , prithivya vishnu sreshthena,  vishnuva, Somo dhenum Raahugano Gautamah Somastrishthup/ Somo dhenum, Somayedam, Ttaam Pushan Suryaa Saavitri trishthup, Paayasa charu homeyvi, Taam Pushacchiva/

( Thus Fifteen Homaas are required to be done with the above detailed Mula Mantraas viz:  Aatey garbho-- Karomi tey-Pumaastey Putro-Yaani bhadraani- Kaamah samudbhavataam-Agniretu-Imaamagnisrtaayataam-Maa tey gruhye-Aprajastaam-Deva kutam Braahmanam-Nejamesha-Yatheyam Prithivi- Vishno sreshthena-Somam dhenu-Taam Pushan- Taam Pushacchiva). After the Aahutis, Swishtakruta homa etc. are performed and the Bharta should touch the Patni’s ‘naabhi’ and complete the Putra Kameshti with Go daana and Bhojana Dakshinaas to Brahmanas as they sleep in the night on darbha mats on the ground.

Pumsavanam: Pumsavana function is performed once the conception is confirmed. This is observed in the second or the third or fourth or the sixth month or atleast on the eighth month along with Seemanta function.  This is celebrated on any day from Shukla Panchami to Krishna Panchami excepting on Chaturthi, Navami, Chaturdashi and Purnima. It is best done on Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday; some opine that Soma-Budha-Shukra Vaaraas are very good. As regards Nakshatraas, it is stated that the Purusha Naamakaas are appropriate and these are Pushya,Shravana, Punarvasu, Hasta, Mrighaabhijit, Mula, Anuraadha and Ashvani. Pushyami is stated to be the best , failing which Shravana or at least Hastaadis. This is the Anavalobhana time or purification ceremony normally done in the third month of pregnancy; this is a Garbha Samskaara performed with Pumsavana and it is stted to be essential in the Prathama Garbha. If this Samskaara is not done, there would be a Praayaschitta of Paadakruccha. This Samskaara is executed by the husband or his brother.

Seenanta : This ceremony may be done in fourth or eighth month; some opine that this is also done in sixth or fifth month of conception. The Vachana is: Navameymaasivaakuryaadyaavadgarbha vimochanam, Streeyadyakruta seemantaa prasuyeta kadaachana/ Gruheeta putraa vidhivatsaatam  Samskaaramarhati/ Thus Pumsavana can be performed in the ninth month also . Even if Seemanta is not done before the delivery of the child, then too this can be done along with the child’s other ‘Samskaaraas’. The Paksha-Tithi-Vaara-Nakshatras applicable to Pumsavana  hold good for the Seemanta ceremony also. Some Grandhas mention that upto the Krishna Paksha Dashami the Ceremony is in order on any day; that Shashti, Ashtami, and Dwadashi are Rikta or ineffective Tithis and Purnima is avoidable. However, as exceptions the following might be considered if need be: Chaturthi, Chaturdashi and Purnima or Shashthi-Ashtami-Dwadashi by discarding eight,four and ten Ghadiyas respectively ; and Revati, Rohini, Uttara, Uttaraabhaadra, Uttaraashaadha by discarding the first and the third ‘Paada’or Phase thus during the middle paada. Seemantonnayana  needs to be done only once to a woman irrespective of the number of  her pregnancies This function has to be executed by the husband himself. If there were any shortcoming in the Garbhaadhaana Ceremony then the Prayaschitta would be to perform Go daana to a Brahmana. The Sankalpa to observe this function is: Mamaasyaam Bharyaamutpasyamaana garbhasya gaarbhika baijika dosha parihaarapumrupataa siddhi jnaanodaya pratirodha parihaara dwaaraa Shri Parameshwara preetyartham pumsavanamana lobhanam mamasyaa bhaaryaayam garbhaabhi vriddhi prati bandhi piscita rudhira Priyaa Lakshmi Bhuta Raakshasi gana doora nirasana kshema sakaa  soubhaagyadaana Maha Lakshmi Samaavesana dwaaraa prati garbhasamudbhavaino nibarhana dwaaraacha Shri Parameshwara preetyartham Stree samskaara rupam Seemantonnayanaakhyam karmacha tantrena karishye/  If Pumsavana and Sematha are to be done together, Agi Kaaryas are to be executed. Praayaschitta for not performing any of the Samskaaras  is to provide Brahmana Bhojanaas for ten or atleast three .

Garbhini Dharmaas: Garbhini Strees should not mount elephants, horses or carts nor climb mountains, high rise buildings or heights in general. They should not as a principle over exert or tire out, much less run or even walk too briskly. They should avoid unclean objects, places and surroundings nor resort to use kitchen implements of sharpness, heat and weight. They should not enter deep in water- flows for bathing, stand or stay for long in lonely and open  places and under trees. The Garbhinis should  not eat food on the Sandhya timings nor consume too cold or hot foods or too pungent, sour, stored, unimely, hard and heavy food.They should not mate, resist sleep in the after noon with creative jobs,  desist from talking excessively , nor spend lonely times in the evenings and nights, but sleep early in the night.Do not spread out head hair loose, shout and laugh loud, maintain physical cleanliness and keep fresh with fragrances and flowers. Regular worship, performance of Daanaas and peaceful activities and enjoying good company with friends, and relatives are a part of the psychological tone-up. Travel in the fourth, sixth and eighth months of pregnancy must be forbidden and certainly not in the sixth month. Garbhini Pati Dharmas: During the period of pregnancy, the husband of the Garbhini too has certain duties. His major responsibility of course to to please her by fulfilling her small and big desires tat that would indeed result in the birth of a healthy boy with long and happy life. Besides he has to observe a few but significant tasks: he should not have Samudra Snaana, not resort to cut trees, to shave his head or face, not to travel by Seas or other wise,  not even undertake Tirtha Yatras, not to carry dead bodies , not to take up new activities of house construction, not to cut nails;  not to take up weddings, Upanayanas and such other Karyas, and not to offer Pinda Daanaas, attend Preta Karmas and so on if possible.However, some opine that performing the Pratyabdika Ceremonies of one’s own parents need not be disturbed although Dasrsha-Mahalaya Karmas may not be performed. Garbha Sraava prayaschitta: In the unfortunate event of Garbha Sraava, the woman concerned has to perform on a Shubha Dina a Kanchana Yagnopaveeta daana to a Brahmana with the Sankalpa: Mama garbha sraava nidaana sakala dosha parihaara dwaaraa Shri Parameshwara preetyartham Vaayu Puraanoktam  Suvarna Yagnopaveeta daana vidhim karishye! This daana is to  be done by the Garbhini herself in lieu of Bala Hatya Prayaschitta. Sukha Prasavopaaya: The relevant procedure for quick and safe delivery of a child is to remove any obstacles by reciting the Ruks in Rukvidhaana viz. Pramandiney and also the Sukta named  Viji hyeeshye and give the Mantra Jala to the Garbhini to drink along with the Mantra: Himavatyuttare paarsvey Suradhaamaana Yakshini, Tasmaat smarana maatrena vishalyaa garbhini bhaveyt/ Om Ksheem Om Swaahaa/  Along with this Mantra the Garbhini is to be administered Tila Thaila or the oil of Sesame seeds added by Durvaankura grass by hundred or possibly thousand sips as also smear the oil on her Garbha. Also: Vamshanimbayostwak Tulasi mulam kapittha patram karaveera beejam cha sama bhaagam Mahishi dugdhena   peshayitwaa tena satailena yoni lepey sadyah prasavah/ ( A mix of buffalo milk with lemon skin , Tulasi leaf root, Neem-Kapitha-Karaveera seed-all in equal proportion be administered to the Garbhini for fast  and secure delivery).

Jaata karma: The father of the newly arrived Putra / Putri may sight the face  by avoiding Moola, Jyeshta and such othe Vyatipaataas and greet the Elders of the family and take an auspicious bath in normal water of room temperature wearing  Suvarna preferably in the early night. If the Dushta Nakshatraas like Moola , Jyeshtha etc. occur at that time, then the Snaana be performed without sighting the face of the child. In case the husband is away then the first information  of the delivery should be followed by the Snaana  for Shuddhi without touching the objects in the surroundings. As the Snaana is over and by that time the Naabhi Sutra is cut, the mother is about to breast-feed the new born being seated on her thigh, then the father would make the Sankalpa: Asya Kumaarasya garbhaamu paana janitha dosha nibharhanaayur medhaa vridhi beeja garbha samudbhavaino nibarhana dwaaraa Shri Parameshwara preetyartham Jaata karma karishye tadaadoucha Swasti Punyaah vaachanam Maatrukaa pujanamcha karishye/ Hiranyena Putra janma nimitthakam Jaata karmaagancha Naandhi Shraadham tantrena karishye/  After this Sankalpa, the proceedings of the Jata Karma would be as per their own Kulaachaara, daanas be tendered to Brahmanas and puja be preformed to the Kula Jyotisha to ascertain the Janma Lagna,Shubhaashubha Graha Nirnaya and the procedure of Dhushta Graha Shaanti Vivarana and Nivaarana. The necessary arrangements for Graha Shaanti be decided by way of Graha- Mantra-Japa-homa daanaas. Then the Naabhi is cut, dripped in water with gold and let the mother continue the breast feed of the ‘Putra’; incidentally the word Putra includes Putri also as clarified in relevant Mantra.  Subsequently the Karta would make the Sankalpa: Jaata karmaanga homam karishye! Then Loukikaagni is installed and homaas are offered in ghee addressing Agni, Indra, Prajapati, Vishwa Devataas and Brahma. The rest of the Karya krama is performed as per one’s own house hold traditions. Atra sarvatra jaata karmar naamakarmaadou mukhya kaalaatikramey Gurvadyasta rahitey Shubha Nakshatraadou Jaatakramaadikam kaaryam/ (In the event of not being able to perform at the correct  timing as described above, then Jaata Karmaa and other Namakaranaadi Karyaas be done when Guru and other Shubha Grahas are predominant). The Jata Karma Nakshatraas are: Rohini, Uttara, Uttaraashaadha, Uttaraabhadra, Ashwini, Hasta, Pushya, Anuraadha, Revati, Mriashira, Chitta, Shravana, Dhanisdhtha, Shatabhishak, Swaati and Punarvasu; these Nakshatraas are Rikta Tithis. Excepting Pravatithis the other Tithis. Excepting Tuesday and Saturdays all other days are without  bhatdraa- vaidhrutyaadis and of Sukendra Lagnaas and hence are propitious.

Shashthi Devataa Puja: Janma Devata Puja is to be performed on the fifth or the sixth day’s night in the first Prahara when the father and mother of the new born are bathed and seated to make a Sankalpa to this effect: ‘ With a view to ensure and enhance the health and longevity of the child, as also demolish all kinds of Arishtas against him/her,  I  invoke Ganesha Deva first and having pleased him with my puja then approach Bhagavati Shashthi Devi whose other names are Jeevanti and Shastra Garbha Bhagavati’. Thus Ganesha and Janmadaa Devi Pratimaas  be installed on a Raashi of Rice and worshipped with Shodashopachaaraas reciting Lambodara Mahaa Bhaaga Sarvopadravanaashana, Twadprasadaada Vighnena Chiranjeevatu Baalakah/ Naraayani swarupena Baalam me Raksha Sarvadaa, Preta Bhuta Pishaachaabhyo Daakini Yogineeshucha/ Maateeva Raksha baalam mey swaapadey pannageshucha, Gouri Putro Yadhaa Skandah Shishutvey rakshitah puraa /Tathaa mamaapyam Balasshashtikey rakshyataam mamah/  (Deva Vighnesha, Maha Pujya! You destroy all the obstacles; Kindly bless the child to live for long! Devi Shashthi Devi!Younare the Supreme Mother of the Universe, especially this child who should be secured from Bhuta-Preta- Pisachaasand Vyaghra Sarpaadi cruel and poisonous Beings; do save him as you would do to Kumara Swami himself!) After the Prayers, Brahmana- Bhojana-Dakshina-Daanaas would follow with Ratri Jaagarana and on the next day with Bali Daana and Anna Daanaas.

Ashoucha Kartavyaas :  In respect of ‘Jaataashoucha’ and ‘Mritaashoucha’ one should perform ‘Praanaayaama’ without Mantras. Maarjana Mantras should not be recited but perform Marjana physically and mentally. When Arghya is given to Surya Deva, then Gayatri Mantra may be recited; there need not be the recital of Upasthaana Mantra but Surya Dhyana may be done. There should not be Gayatri Japa. But some opine that the recital might be done mentally. In any case Vaishva Deva, Brahma Yagna and other components of Pancha Maha Yagna should not be  performed. Vedadhyayana is prohibited.  Aouposana-Homa-Pinda Pitru Yagna be performed by a Brahmana who is other than of the same Gotra. In case ‘Anvaadhana’or placing ‘Aajya’or fuel on the sacred fire has been done and Ashoucha occurs, then one should request a Brahmana to continue ‘Ishti’ and ‘Sthaalipapaaka’ Karmas and after taking Snaana discontinue the rest of the tasks viz. the homas etc. Pratyabdika Shraddha may be postponed to the eleventh day of Shuddhi or on the susequent Darsha / Amavasya or on any Vyatipaataadi ‘Parva dina’. Incidentally, even of one’s wife is during the period of menses, the husband is required to perform Pinda Pitru Yagna or Darsha Shraadda. If the Karta realises that his wife has shown signs of menses after ‘Anvaadhana’then he need not dicsontinue ‘Ishti’ and ‘Sthaalipaaka’as exceptions but ‘Daana-Pratigrahanaas’ and Veda- dhyanas should be avoided. Pinda Pitru Yagna, Sthaalipaaka, Shravana Karmaas should not be proxied to Brahmanas during ‘Jaataashoucha-Mrita Shouchaas’ although those Karyas already initiated and in progress might be entusted to Brahmanaas. Aagrayana should also  not be entrusted to Brahmanas during Ashoucha period; nor ‘Agnyaropana’ and ‘Pratyavaropana’. If ‘Grihaagni’ is put off during the Ashoucha, there could be ‘Punarutpatti’ by a Shrotriya. If Ashoucha is conveyed during one’s meal,  then the morsel of what is being eaten should be discarded and bathing is performed forthwith. Eating that small amount too would attract the prayaschitta of Upavasa. If the entire meal is consumed then three Upavaasas are warranted! However, if Grahana occurs during the Ashoucha that Ashoucha is not applicable to Grahana kaala in view of the clarification : Sutakey Mritakey chaiva na dosho Rahu Darshaney/ and thus the person concerned should go ahead with Snaana-Shraadha- Daana- Japaas; similarly Sankraanti Snaanaadi Karmas could be performed.

Shutaka Shuddhi: The woman who delivered a child is free from Ashoucha after ten days and would be eligible for Shuddhi and Sparsha besides authorisation for performing Jaata Karma-Naama Karana and such other Shubha Karyaas; she would also be eligile for performing Jateshti, Vivaha, Upanayana and such other Shubha Karyaas after twenty days in the case of delivering a male child and thirty days in respect of a girl child.


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