Thursday, March 21, 2013

Aupasana

Courtesy: Sri.V.Muralidharan
Aupasana homa is started on the evening of the marriage and is continued
for a lifetime. It is an ordained karma and duty of all Brahmins. Just 
because this has gone out of practice from most families, it does not 
mean it is not needed. Sastra has not changed. There are still many 
Brahmins who do Aupasana homa regularly. There are also several 
Agnihotris today who do Agnihotra regularly using 3 agnis. We have to 
search to locate them as they do not advertise themselves! It is not 
impossible to do it and even now those who have the time and will power 
can start it and continue it.

Some points on Aupasana agni homa:

1. It is started on the evening of the marriage and is done for 4 days after which Garba dana ceremony is done. It is done twice a day after morning and evening sandya vandana.

2. It should be continued for the lifetime and the same agni is used at the antyeshti also.
3. The Aupasan agni has to be alive (burning) all the time. If it goes out, a small vichinna homa can be performed and it can be restarted.

4. Wife is compulsorily necessary for its performance. Without wife 
being present in the house, Aupasana cannot be done. (even during 
rajaswala period of wife, husband can do it)

5. Wife can also do aupasana in the absence of the husband for up to 5 times (2 and half days). She chants very few mantras and puts rice two 
time in fire. Note: Wife can do aupasana without husband and not 
vice-versa! Beyond 5 times vichinna home is needed by the husband.

6. If the couple has to go to another place for a few days, then the 
Aupasana fire can be transferred to a samittu by a (samittaropana) 
mantra and only the samit needs to be taken to the new place where it 
can be ignited by ordinary fire and restart the Aupasana there.
7. If there is break in Aupasana for a long time, a simple homa 
called vichinna Aupasana homa is performed.Then Aupasana can be started 
from ordinary fire. This is what is done every time we perform shraddas 
in our house as oupasana has to be done before the shradda is started.
8. In cities the problem is to obtain simple materials like cowdung 
cake and rice thavidu (rice bran) and a well ventilated room to keep the aupasan agni which may emit a small amount of smoke.
9. Aupasana requires only about half a fistful of (raw) rice in two parts. No ghee or (cooked) anna is needed. It takes only 10 minutes to perform it. Getting the fire ready may take some more time.
10. This simple aupasana homa gives all benefits to the family of the 
person performing it. Agni is a very powerful God and gives benefits 
directly. Even if benefits are not desired, it gives a lot of spiritual 
peace and elevation.

11. Now a days even most of the sastrigals have stopped doing it. It 
does not mean that ordinary interested persons cannot start and continue to do it. We should know that these are secrets handed down by great Rishis and it is left to us to make use of such esoteric practices.
12. Many details and mantras can be found in the book "Homa Vidhana" by Anna and other books available in most religious book shops.

11 comments:

  1. Dear Sir,
    Thanks a lot for this valuable post - great insights - due to paucity of time, now-a-days we are unable to perform this invaluable nithyakarmanushtanam. Would you recommend doing atleast Sthaaleebagam - ie. doing vichinna agni santhanam and aupasanam during the next day of amavaasai and pournami - atleast twice a month ? this will atleast remark a thanks giving to Agni bagawan. In that will we have to give havisu as boiled rice instead of akshatas in normal aupasanam, am not sure on this (If so, boiled rice is the correct option, then will it be a appropriate poorvam ritual). Since i dont want to miss doing this, Iam requesting your opinion.
    Thanks in advance
    Hari Hara Ramasubramanian

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Hari: Am not sure if you received a direct reply to this. As someone who was fortunate to have a bit of experience with this, here goes:
      1) sthAlIpAkam is an absolute must. From what my teacher (who is an expert at srauta and smArta karma-s) told me, if three paksAs go without sthAlIpAkam, then this results in agni nAsa. But as is typical, there are work-arounds if you are travelling and cannot do the sthAlIpAkam on the required prathama tithi.

      2) The basic procedure of sthAlIpAkam is that one cooks the rice on the aupasana agni and then offers that to agni bhagavan with just two ahutis (agni and agni sviStakrt). There are of course, other mantras in the course of the regular homa that will need to be used. All of this requires knowledge of basic homa procedures. This is not difficult to learn but does require sincerity and dedication.

      If you planning on keeping agni bhagavan, it is a great decision. Trust ,me, you will enjoy it and your home will be filled with an indescribable presence. May agni bhagavAn bless more brAhmaNa-s to keep Him at their home!

      Delete
    2. Dear Sir,
      Really inspiring and many thanks for your reply - Kindly let me know if SthAleepAkam is considered to be a poorvam ritual in other words, can it be done when the parents are alive...
      Thanks once again for your reply...

      Delete
    3. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    4. Without your realizing it, you would have done your first sthAlIpAkam along with your vivAha vrata :) - hope this clarifies...sthAlIpAkam gives pushti to agnI...which is also why your in-laws might have given you a set of brass vessels as a wedding gift...in the hope that their daughter is given to a young man intent on doing his karmas...if you are really serious (and i do hope you are!) please do contact a purohita/vAdhyAr to learn your sutras' agnimukha...this is a must to do sthAlIpAkam...the side-benefit is that you will learn the basics of all common homas...

      i do not know the owner of this blog (Sri Ramesh) and it looks as if i have turned his space into an advice center/message board on his blog (apologies!)...so if you have any more questions please drop a line with your email id on my (totally unupdated) blog rather than here (will probably not check this space for updated messages again)...i will not publish your comment to protect privacy...we can then take it from there on (if you are REALLY interested)...

      Delete
    5. No, not at all sir. You can use this blog for clearing queries.

      Delete
    6. Dear Swamin - thanks a lot for your reply - am indebted to you to have obtained the clarity...
      After enjoying doing samithadAnam, iam missing this agnikaarya nithyakarmaanushtaanam, will try getting more knowledge on the practicals soon and start it... Thanks again once more to have taken this effort to reply....

      Delete
  2. Dear Sir,

    Please tell me whether all the below mentioned tharpana dates are mentioned in Pambu panchangam, if not how to find the correct dates every year.

    yugAdi -- 4(I know abt only one Yugadhi)
    manvAdi -- 14
    vaiDhruti -- 13
    vyatIpAtam -- 13
    ashtakA -- 4
    anvashtakA -- 4
    tisroshtakA -- 4

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am able to see mention of 'tretayugaadi', 'dvaaparayugaadi' and 'kaliyugaadi' on different dates of every year in Pambupanchangam. These are the 3 yugaadis in addition to the lunar new year celebrated as "Ugadi".
      I have also seen various 'manvaadi's listed.
      'Vaidhrutti' &'Vyatipaata' ('viyatipaata' in Tamil) are different yogaas (yogams). The panchangam lists the yogaa for every day after the tithi & nakshatra. These two are abbreviated as 'vai' and 'viya'.

      Delete
  3. Can u pls elaborate on SAMIT SAMAROPANAM. Actually I had the oppurtunity to discuss the issue with Learned DIKSHITAS of SENGALIPURAM. They were of the opinion that SAMIT Or ATMA Samaropanam was not possible in case of Aupasana & that it is applicable only to AGNIHOTRA. For Aupasana simple VICHIINA AGNISANDHANAM is applicable

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sri Jayaram, am not sure what is the basis for that judgement. If you can ask them the next time as to the pramANa that will be nice. AFAIK, samAropaNa is certainly possible for aupAsana agni (i am abroad currently and do not have access to my books so cannot quote). That is what i have been taught and practiced. But there are restrictions for e.g. in terms of travel - therefore, honestly, myself do not prefer samAropaNa due to that reason. And which is probably why some people discourage it.

      In any case, i personally have not felt the need to do samAropaNa much - my wife would do the aupAsana in case i had to travel and if it was an extended travel or some such thing we would rather do a punassandhAnam.

      Anyway, do you keep agni bhagavAn at home and do a lot of short travels or something - and therefore your question?

      Delete