pitru paksha (Shradh)

    pitru paksha (Shradh)

    Pitru Paksha is a period of 16 days dedicated to the ancestral ancestors. Donations are offered during this period to pay tribute to the forefathers of one’s family and to soothe their souls.

    Rituals for Shradh and pooja are more effective when they are performed under the supervision of a skilled Vedic Astrologer.

    Karna and the Shradh Ritual

    Based on Hindu tradition, the custom that people offer Shradh (donations) during Pitru Paksha is attributed to Karna. Karna was a generous person who gave gold, as well as other items of value throughout his lifetime to help those in need and the poor. When he passed away his soul went to heaven where he received the jewels and gold to consume. Incredulous, he visited Indra to inquire about why this happened. Indra said that despite giving various things, including gold, throughout his lifetime, he did not donate food items to his ancestral ancestors. Karna explained that because of the fact that he didn’t know about his ancestors, he had never made any donation. Therefore Indra let Karna to return to the earth to complete Shraddha and to seek redemption.

    • The belief is that during this time, the ancestors of one’s family descend into the world to give blessings to their relatives.
    • Tarpan, Shraddha and Pind Daan are performed to please them.
    • The practice of these rituals is crucial because it assists the ancestors of one’s family to cross over to their respective realms of destiny.

    The Ritual of Shradh

    It is believed that the Ritual of Shraddha involves the male, typically the son who is the oldest in the family. After bathing, it is mandatory to be adorned with a necklace from the kush grass. Kush grass symbolizes kindness and is utilized to invoke the ancestral spirits. The term “Kushal Buddhi” is believed to come from the word kush. Pind Daan, the practice of offering sesame seeds, rice and balls made of barley flour, is carried out. In the Lord’s worship, blessings from Vishnu are then invoked by using the holy grass called darbha grass. Darbha grass is renowned for its unimpeded growth and also helps overcome obstacles in one’s journey. Food specially prepared for the occasion is given to honor the ancestors of one’s past. Crows, who are thought to be the representative of Yama eating food, are thought to be as a sign of good luck. Following, Brahmin priests are offered food and the members of the family eat their dinner.

    The reading of Holy Scriptures such as Garuda Purana, Agni Purana and the tales about Nachiketa as well as Ganga Avataram are considered to be a blessing during this period. But, there are some items to avoid during Pitru Paksha.

    1. It’s not the best moment to begin anew. Beware of starting something that is new, even something like buying and getting new clothes, washing your hair or cutting hair, and even shaving is prohibited during this time, particularly on the day that ends the festival, i.e. Mahalaya Amavasya.

    2. According to Raj Guru astrologer , getting married and commemorating the birthday of a baby born child, moving into an apartment, beginning an enterprise, and many other significant events must be delayed or postponed so that they do not fall within the realm that is Pitru Paksha.

    3. Consuming non-vegetarian foods or adding garlic or onion in the food is prohibited.

    4. There is a belief that only when one is honest in his conduct and with no ill-will will his efforts be rewarded. It is therefore essential to cleanse one’s mind of negative thoughts and to pay homage to the ancestors of one’s family with absolute respect and sincerity. It is also crucial to stay away from pleasure-seeking activities to allow the ritual to be effective.

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