manifestation and how his worship got associated with the auspicious day of
shashthi,sage Mahatapa told king Prajapal-Once,a fierce battle was between the
deities and demons in which the deities got defeated.The reason behind their
defeat was the absence was the absence of an able commander who could lead
them.The deities went to seek the help of lord Brahma.Being unable to solve
their problem,lord Brahma took the deities to lord Shiva.
Lord Shiva invoked 'Shakti' present within his body and thus manifested lord Kartikeya.He was named after the six 'Kritikas' who had nurtured him by feeding their breast milk.Lord shiva then made Kartikeya the commander of the deities on the auspicious day of shashthi.Under his able leadership,the deities finally managed to defeat the demons.
A devotee who worships lord Kartikeya on shashthi enjoys prosperity and gets all his desire fulfilled. A childless couple must worship on this auspicious day to get blessed with a son.
King Prajapal asked
Mahatapa-"The thought of divine radiance taking the form of human radiance
bewilders me.Please clear my doubts."
Sage Mahatapa replied -"When the almighty God willed to manifest himself in other tangible forms,an effulgence emanated from his being resulting into the creation of 'Surya'(The Sun).The whole world became illumined with Surya's radiance and all the deities dwelling within the body of Almighty God expressed their gratitude.Initially,unbearable heat emanated from 'Surya',causing great uncomfort to the deities but later on Almighty God reduced it to bearable limit at the request of the deities.Surya had manifested himself on the auspicious day of 'saptami' hence this particular day became deeply associated with the worship of Surya.
Continuing with his
narration,sage Mahatapa said -"During ancient times,there lived a mighty
demon named 'Andhakasur'.Andhakasur had become arrogant because of a boon of
immortality received from lord Brahma. Being tormented by Andhakasur,all the
deities went to seek lord Brahma's help.Lord Brahma took the deities to lord
Shiva who agreed to kill the wicked demon-Andhakasur.
The battle commenced and a fierce dual fight broke out between Lord Shiva and Andhakasur.Shiva attacked Andhakasur with his trident.Stream of blood oozed out from the wound,but to Shiva's utter amazement each drop of blood falling on the ground resulted in into the creation of numerous Andhakasuras.In a short time the battle field was overcrowded with countless Andhakasuras.Now,Shiva's anger crossed all limits and he thundered loudly.Flames emanated from the mouth of enraged Shiva resulting into the manifestation of goddess 'Yogishwari'.Similarly,seven more goddesses manifested themselves from different deities- Vaishnavi from lord Vishnu,Brahmi from lord Brahma,Kaumari from Kartikeya,Mahendri from Indra,Yami from Yama,Varahi from lord Varah and Maheshwari from lord Narayan.All these eight goddesses came to be known as 'Matrikas' and lord assigned them the auspicious day for their worship.A devotee who worships these eight matrikas on ashtami are blessed.The use of 'bael'(wood-apple)fruit on this day has great significance.
King Prajapal requested
sage Mahatapa to narrate about the manifestation of goddess Durga and the
significance of her worship on navami.Sage Mahatapa replied-The mighty demon-Vetrasur
had driven out deities from the heaven.All the deities went to lord Brahma and
sought his help.As lord Brahma was wondering about his further course of
action,suddenly goddess Durga appeared from nowhere.She held various weapons in
each of her eight arms and was mounted on a ferocious lion.Lord Brahma was
relieved as he was confident that Goddess Durga would certainly kill
Vretasur.Finally,goddess Durga indeed killed the dreaded demon without much
difficulty.Later on,all the deities requested her to make himalaya mountain as
her abode to which she agreed.This particular place,in course of time became
famous as Nandadevi.One who worships goddess Durga on the auspicious day of
navami gets her blessings.
Having finished the tale
of goddess Durga,sage Mahatapa revealed how all the six directions came into
existence-"Six divine women manifested themselves from both the ears of
lord Brahma during the initial phase of creation.The name of these six divine
women were Purva(east),Dakshina(south),Paschima(west),Uttara(north),
Urdhva(upwards) and Adhara(downwards).In course of time all of them got married
to six different Lokpals. Lord Brahma assigned the auspicious day of dashami for
their worship.One who worships all these six goddesses on the auspicious day of
dashami is blessed and one who observes fast on this day gets absolved of all
Continuing with the
tales of the manifestation of various deities,sage Mahatapa said-"In the
process of doing his creation,lord Brahma bellowed as a result of which Kubera
manifested himself.Lord Brahma assigned kubera the lordship of all the wealth
and prosperity.It was 'ekadashi' when Kubera had manifested himself,so this
particular day has deep association with his worship.One who observes a fast on
the auspicious day of ekadashi never lives in poverty."
Describing how lord
Vishnu manifested,sage Mahatapa told Prajapal -"Narayan -the almighty God
incarnated as lord Vishnu to nurture all the living creatures inhabiting the
world.Eventually,lord Vishnu entrusted the job of world's welfare to goddess
Yoganidra and himself went into his meditative sleep.While he was still in his
meditative sleep,a lotus flower emanated from his navel.Lord Brahma was seated
on that lotus flower.
The almighty God was delighted to see himself in the incarnation of Vishnu.He blessed Vishnu by saying- 'May you destroy all kind of ignorance with the help of your sword.Hold this chakra I am giving you,to sever the evil influences of 'kaal-chakra'(wheel of time).May all the sins be destroyed by your mace.May the deity-Vayu adorn your hand in the form of a conch and vaijyanti mala in your neck.May the Sun and Moon adorn your person in the form of shrivatsa and kaustubh diamonds.May Garuda be your mount and goddess Laxmi your consort.May people desirous of salvation worship you on the auspicious day of dwadashi.One who worship you on this day will definitely attain to the heaven.'
Sage Mahatapa then told
king Mahapal about the manifestation of Dharma and the significance of
trayodashi-'Dharma manifested himself from the right part of almighty God and
appeared like a bullock. The almighty God instructed him to protect the mankind
from all evils and sins.All the four feet of Dharma signified four various
virtues-truth,purity,penance and charity.In satyayuga,Dharma was four footed-all
the four virtues were prevalent during that era.In treta yuga,the feet reduced
to three.The subsequent eras of dwapar and kaliyuga saw the further decline in
virtuosity in which Dharma had two feet and one foot respectively.'
'Once,a fierce battle was fought between the deities and demons.The bone of contention was a woman for whom both the side made claims.Dharma intervened and solved the contentious issue to the satisfaction of both the warring sides.Lord Brahma was very impressed by the deftness with which Dharma had handled such a tough situation and blessed him by saying-I am assigning the auspicious day of tryodashi to you.One who observes a fast and worship you on this day will be liberated from all his sins.'
Sage Mahatapa then went
on to describe the incident that led to the manifestation of lord Rudra and the
significance of chaturdashi-'In the beginning of creation,when lord Brahma
failed in his repeated attempts to create,he became frustrated.Frustration
turned into fury and from his fury manifested a divine entity who cried
incessantly.Lord Brahma tried to stop him from crying and said-tvam ma rud(don't
cry).This is how lord Rudra got his name.Lord Brahma then requested Rudra to
commence creation but since Rudra lacked the power needed for doing creation
therefore he refused and went to do penance.Later on, lord Brahma created his
manasputras and other living creatures.Daksha Prajapati was one of these
manasputras.Once,he had organised a grand yagya in which all the deities and
even the demons had been invited.'
Meanwhile,Rudra's penance was disturbed by the constant chanting of the mantras at the yagya performed by Daksha Prajapati.Rudra was infuriated resulting into the emanation of flames from his mouth.Eventually these fire-balls got transformed into ferocious spirits and ghosts.Rudra then reached the place where the yagya was being performed and with the help of all the spirits and ghosts started destoying the oblation site.It was only after lord Brahma's intervention that Rudra calmed down.All the deities then eulogized Rudra and sought his blessings. One who worships lord Rudra on the auspicious day of chaturdashi becomes absolved of all his sins.
importance of amavasya,sage Mahatapa told Prajapal-"Once,while lord Brahma
was just about to commence the process of creation,suddenly 'tanmatras'(subtle
forms of matter) revealed themselves from his mind.All of them being extremely
virtuous were eager to go up in the sky to do penance byt lord Brahma requested
them to become the 'pitras'(ancestors)of the human beings.All the tanmatras then
requested Brahma to make arrangement for their sustenance.Lord Brahma blessed
them by saying-'I assign to you the auspicious day of amavasya.Anybody who
performs the rituals of 'tarpan'(libation) on this day would become absolved of
his sins.You would sustain yourselves on various things like water,sesame seeds,
and kusha grass which are offered by human beings to their ancestors on this
importance of purnima sage Mahatapa said-"Daksha Prajapati had cursed
Chandrama,his son-in-law for maltreating his daughters.As the fallout of that
curse Chandrama started waning day by day and eventually became invisible on
amavasya.All the deities became worried and went to seek lord Vishnu's help.Lord
Vishnu advised them to get the ocean churned.While the ocean was being
churned,Chandrama once again manifested himself from the ocean.Lord Brahma then
assigned the auspicious day of purnima to him and blessed him.A devotee should
observe a fast on purnima and worship Chandrama for the attainment of
kowledge,prosperity aswell as salvation.
celebrated on the twelfth day of hindu month-Margashirsh.On this auspicious day
a devotee should worship lord Matsya -the incarnation of lord Vishnu with
appropriate rituals and give charity to brahmins.Prithvi was the first one to
observe this particular austerity while she was being abducted to rasatala by a
mighty demon named Hiranyaksha.A devotee who observes a fast on this day and
worships lord Matsya with appropriate rituals attains to Brahma loka and remains
their for eternity. Such a person attain's a divine body when creation
recommences after the period of deluge.An issue-less woman is blessed with a
virtuous son if she observes a fast on this day.Matsya-dwadashi is capable of
absolving a man even of the gravest of his sin.
austerity is dedicated to the worship of lord Kurma-the incarnation of lord
Vishnu.It is celebrated on the twelfth day of the bright half of the hindu month
'pausha'.The austerity which commences on the tenth day itself when a devotee is
supposed to purify himself by taking a holy bath.On the following day he
observes a fast and worships lord Kurma with appropriate rituals.He breaks his
fast on dwadashi which marks the conclusion of the austerity.A devotee who
observes a fast on this auspicious day becomes absolved of all his sins and
Varah dwadashi is
celebrated on the twelfth day of the bright half of the hindu month-magh.This
was the day on which Prithvi had been rescued by lord Varah-the incarnation of
lord Vishnu.An idol of lord Varah is installed on a pot filled with water and
worshipped with appropriate rituals amidst the continuous chanting of the
mantra-'om varahay namah'.Offerings of various articles are made while
worshipping lord Varah-sandal- wood,incense, naivedya,etc.After the
accomplishment of the rituals brahmins are fed and charity given to them.One who
observes a fast on this day enjoys a good health and prosperity.Such a man
becomes absolved of all his sins and attains to heaven after his death.
This austerity is
observed on the twelfth day of the bright half of the hindu month-phalgun.A
devotee should observe fast on this day and worship lord Nrisimha with
appropriate rituals.This particular austerity is capable of absolving a man from
all his sins.
Vaman dwadashi is
celebrated on the twelfth day of the bright half of the hindu month-chaitra.A
devotee should observe a fast and worship lord Vaman by saying the following
prayer-O Lord!Vaman-the dwarfish incarnation of the almighty Vishnu,who took
incarnation on the auspicious day of dwadashi in the month of chaitra-I seek
your blessings."One who observes a fast on this day is blessed and
protected from all kinds of danger.
This austerity is
related with the worship of lord Parshuram who is also famous as Jamdagnya.It is
cele- brated on the twelfth day of the bright half of the hindu month-vaishakh.Before
commencing the rituals, a devotee should purify himself by taking a bath and
then worship an idol of lord Parshuram kept on a pot filled with water.While
worshipping he should make offerings of various articles tothe deity-flowers,
sandalwood,ardhya,etc.It is mandatory to remain awake for the whole night.On the
following day,he should donate the idol to a brahmin.A devotee who observes a
fast on this day gets all his wishes fulfilled and attains to Brahma loka.
A devotee should
commence this austerity by observing a fast on the eleventh day of the bright
half of the hindu month-bhadrapad and break it on the following day-dwadashi.He
should worship lord Kalki with appropriate rituals.As per the norms of the
rituals,the idol of lord Kalki is placed on a pot which is filled with
water.This idol is donated to a learned brahmin on the following day-trayodashi.
This austerity is
related with the worship of lord Padmanabh-an epithet of lord Vishnu and is
observed on the twelfth day of the bright half of the hindu month-ashwin.One
important charecteristic of the ritual is that all the organs of lord Padmanabh
is worshipped.The idol is placed on a pot filled with water and while
worshipping offerings of various articles are made-flowers,fruits,sandalwood,etc.On
the following day the idol is donated to a brahmin.One who observes a fast on
this day enjoys a prosperous life and attains to the abode of lord Padmanabh.
austerity is observed in the hindu month of Kartik.The rituals commence by
worshipping various organs of lord Narayan amidst the chanting of different
mantras which are as follows-
· om sahastra shirse namah - head
· om purushay namah - arms
· om vishwa rupine namah - throat
· om gyanastray namah - weapons
· om shri vatsaaya namah - chest
· om jagad grasishnave namah - abdomen
· om divya murtaye namah - waist
· om sahastra paday namah - feet.
Similarly,srikrishna dwadashi is celebrated in the hindu month of Ashadh,shukla- paksha.A devotee should worship lord Krishna on this day and observe a fast.
Buddha is believed to be the incarnation of Lord Vishnu.The austerity begins on
the eleventh day of the bright half of the hindu month-shravan.On this day lord
Vishnu is worshipped with appropriate rituals and by making offerings of various
articles like flowers,fruits,incense,etc.The following mantras should be chanted
while worshipping the various organs of lord Vishnu -
· om damodaray namah - feet
· om hrishikeshay namah - waist
· om sanatanay namah - abdomen
· om shri vatsadharine namah - chest
· om chakrapanaye namah - arms
· om haraye namah - throat
· om manju keshay namah - head
· om bhadray namah - top-knot(shikha).
After the accomplishment of the rituals,the idol should be donated to a brahmin.
austerity on the first day of the hindu month-margashirsh.It is related with the
worship of lord Vishnu and the rituals have some special characteristics-having
one meal on the eleventh day of the month(ekadashi),donating barley to
brahmins,worshipping the idol of goddess Prithvi on 'ekadashi', etc.The
austerity concludes on dwadashi. On ekadashi,goddess Prithvi is also worshipped
alongwith lord Vishnu.Both the idols are installed side by side and covered with
white clothes.After that some rice grains are scattered in front of both the
idols. As per the norms of the rituals,a devotee is required to remain awake for
the whole night.Next morning,he should invite twenty-four brahmins and feed
them.He should also donate a cow,apparels,ornaments,an umbrella,woodden sandle
and similar articles to them.A devotee who observes a fast on this auspicious
day enjoys prosperity.
austerity is a form of 'nakta-vrata',which means observing fast for the whole
day and breaking it in the night.The austerity commences on the first day of the
bright half of the hindu month-aghan and lasts for a year.Rituals include
worshipping Agnideva-an embodiment of lord Vishnu,chanting of certain mantras
praising the glory of the deity and performing 'havan'.There are specific
instructions on the type of food a devotee should have during the course of this
austerity-for four months(chaitra to ashadh) he should have delicacies like 'kheer'
seasoned in pure ghee.From shravan to kartik he should have food-items prepared
from gram-flour. This way,the austerity lasts for one year whereby a devotee
observes fast on the first day of every month that follows.The austerity
concludes by worshipping an idol of lord Agni made of gold.The idol is adorned
with a piece of red-cloth and red-flowers are offered to the deity while
worshipping.After the rituals are accomplished,the idol should be donated to a
brahmin.The observance of this particular austerity brings good fortune to a man
and makes him prosperous.
This austerity is
related with the worship of sri Krishna and Balaram.It commences on the second
day of the bright half of the hindu month-kartik and lasts for a year whereby a
devotee observes fast on the second day(bright half) of every month that
follows.While worshipping Balarama,a devotee should chant-'om baldevay namah'and
while worshipping sri Krishna he should chant-'om keshavay namah'.
Subsequently,'ardhya'is offered to both the deities.A devotee should have food
prepared from barley-flour in the night but those devotees who have resolved to
observe this austerity for four months beginning from 'falgun' should live only
on 'kheer'.Offerings of rice and sesame seeds are made in the sacrificial- fire
during the months of 'aghan' and 'kartik' respectively. The rituals conclude by
worshipping the deity 'Chandrama'at the end of the year.Finally all the three
idols (sri Krishna,Balram and Chandrama) should be donated to brahmins.A devotee
who observes this austerity is bestowed with a charming personality.
This austerity commences
on the third day of the bright half of the hindu month-falgun and lasts for a
year whereby a devotee observes fast on the third day(bright half) of every
month that follows.According to the tradition a devotee can either worship
'Shiva-Parvati' or 'Sri Hari-Laxmi on this auspicious day. While worshipping,the
devotee should chant the following mantras-om gambhiray namah, om saubhagyay
namah,om devdevay namah,om trinetray namah,om vachaspataye namah,om rudray
namah,etc.One important feature of the rituals is making offerings of honey and
ghee to the sacrificial fire.During the course of the rituals,a devotee should
have food prepared from pure cereals preferably wheat. After the rituals are
accomplished at the end of the year,the idols should be donated to brahmins.One
who observes this austerity is blessed with good fortune in his successive seven
As the name implies,this
austerity clears all the obstacles faced by a man.It commences on the fourth day
of the bright half of the hindu month-falgun and lasts for four months whereby a
devotee observes fast on the fourth day(bright half) of every month that
follows.One important characteristic of this austerity is the importance and use
of sesame seeds in it's rituals.It is not only the chief constituent of the diet
but it is also offered in the sacrificial fire and donated to the brahmins as
well.After observing this austerity for four months,a devotee should conclude it
by worshipping lord Ganesh in the fifth month and donating the Ganesh-idol to a
brahmin alongwith five pots filled with sesame seeds.While worshipping lord
Ganesh,he should chant the following mantras-om shooray namah, om dhiray
namah,om gajananay namah,om lambodaray namah,om ekdanshtray namah,etc.A devotee
thus becomes free from all kind of obstacles and all his wishes are fulfilled
This austerity commences
on the fifth day of the bright half of the hindu month-kartik and lasts for a
year whereby a devotee observes fast on the fifth day(bright half) of the every
month that follows.It is related with the worship of lord Vishnu and Sheshnag.A
devotee should abstain from hot and spicy food during the course of this
austerity.Lord Vishnu's idol is purified by chanting mantras and by performing
ablution with milk.Offerings of sesame seeds and milk are made in the
sacrificial fire.After the accomplishment of the rituals at the year
end,brahmins are invited and fed.Finally,the idol of Sheshnag is donated to one
of them.A devotee who performs this austerity becomes free from all kinds of
turbulence in his life and experiences peace and tranquility.
This austerity is
related with the worship of lord Kartikeya and is observed in the bright half of
the hindu month-pausha.On the sixth day of this month,a devotee is expected to
live on nothing else but fruits.Lord Kartikeya is also known by several other
names-Shadanan,Senani,Kritikasut,Kumar,Skand,etc. The austerity concludes by
feeding the brahmins at the year end and making donations to them.A devotee who
observes this austerity gets all his wishes fulfilled.
This austerity is
related with the worship of lord Surya Narayan who is also known by several
other names like Aaditya,Bhaskar,Ravi,Bhanu,Diwakar,Prabhakar,etc.A devotee
should observe a fast on the seventh day of any month and worship lord
Suryanarayan.The fast should be broken on the next day-ashtami.A devotee can
continue this ritual for one year following the above mentioned rituals. A
devotee who observes the rituals of this austerity becomes free from all kind of
diseases and enjoys a healthy life.
This austerity commences
on the eighth day of the bright half of the hindu month-bhadrapad.The rituals
consist of taking a 'sankalp' on the preceding day(saptami)and worshipping lord
sri Hari on the next day with appropriate rituals.Offerings are made to the
sacrificial fire,which usually consist of articles like barley,sesame
seeds,ghee,etc.The austerity concludes by feeding the invited brahmins and
making donations to them.This way,the austerity continues for a year whereby a
devotee observes fast on 'ashtami' of every month.A sonless person is blessed
with a son if he observes this austerity with total devotion .This
austerity,which is popularly known as 'Krishna ashtami'also helps a devotee to
become absolved of gravest of sin.
AND SARVA BHAUM VRATA
Shaurya and Sarva Bhaum
vrata is related with the worship of goddess Durga and is observed on the nineth
day of the bright half of the hindu month-ashvin.The rituals commence by taking
a 'sankalp' as well as observing a fast on the preceding day(saptami).The fast
is broken on the next day(ashtami) by having fruits.Cereals are excluded from
the diet.One important aspect of this austerity is the worship of virgin girls
along with goddess Durga.One who observes the rituals of this austerity attains
power valour and strength. Sarva bhaum vrata is related with the worship of all
the ten directions,considered as goddesses.A fast is observed on the tenth day
of the bright half of the hindu month-kartik and lasts for a year whereby a
devotee observes fast on the tenth day(bright half) of every month that
follows.One important charecteristic of this fast is that it is broken at the
end of the day by having rice and curd.Making sacrifices in the name of all the
ten directions are the inseparable part of this austerity.A devotee,who observes
this austerity lasting for a year remains invincible in whatever he does.
As the name implies,an
idol of a cow made from powdered sesame seeds is donated to a brahmin.The idol
should weigh not less than sixteen 'prasthas'(one prastha=four kudav,ancient
units of weight measurment) Similarly,a calf's idol made from powdered sesame
seeds and weighing four 'prasthas'is donated to a brahmin.Apart from these idols
ofcow and calf a devotee should also donate'deer-skin'. While donating these
things,he should pray in the following way-'O Til dhenu!Bless me so that I enjoy
prosperity and never experience scarcity of any kind in my life.'The brahmin
receiving the donation should express his gratitude in the following way-O
goddess! I am receiving you in all humility.Bless and nurture my whole family.'A
person who donates 'Til Dhenu'get's all his wishes fulfilled and attains to
Vishnu loka after his death.
The method of donating
'Jal Dhenu' is as follows-first of all small area of land is purified by coating
it with cow dung and place two small pots are placed at the centre.These pots
are filled with different things like water,camphor,sandalwood,etc.The devotee
should then imagine goddess Jal Dhenu and her calf to be dwelling in those pots
respectively.Both the pots are adequately adorned with various articles like
sandalwood,flowers and then worshipped.After the completion of the rituals both
the idols are donated to brahmins.A person who donates Jal Dhenu or a brahmin
who accepts it attains to Vishnu loka after being absolved of all his sins.
First of all,the area is
purified by coating it with cow-dung after which a black deer-skin is spread on
it alongwith 'kusha grass'.Two pots-one large and the other a small one are
placed side by side.These pots are filled with sugarcane juice and symbolize
'Rasa-Dhenu' and the calf.Four sugarcanes symbolizing the four legs of 'Rasa-Dhenu'
are fixed at four corners.After that,one small silver piece is placed at the
base of each of the sugarcanes symbolizing hoofs.Rasa-Dhenu is then adorned with
colourful cloths and flowers.Again,four small pots filled with sesame seeds are
kept at the four corners near Rasa-Dhenu.After the worship is
accomplished,Rasa-Dhenu is donated to a brahmin.A person who donates Rasa-Dhenu
is liberated from all his sins and all his ancestors as well as the generations
to come attain to the Heaven.
As it is amply clear by
the name,in this ritual some jaggery is taken and given the shape of a cow and a
calf.The land is purified by coating it with cow-dung.After that,a black
deer-skin is spread on that purified area.Some kusha grass are then spread on
the dear-skin and covered with a piece of cloth.Now,both the idols of cow and
it's calf are worshipped with appropriate rituals after which they are donated
to brahmins.A devotee should also should also donate shoes,umbrella and if
possible,a gold ring to brahmins.Donating a Gud-Dhenu enables a man to attain to
such divine world where sages and hermits dwell.By doing thus,he also liberates
his ancestors and the future generations.