Monday, July 13, 2015

Dakshinayana Puna Kalam - Ahnika Stotram From Harivamsha Puranam

Courtesy:Sri.K.Muralidharan Iyengar

Dear All,

Greetings and Namaste. Dakshinayana Punyakala, marking the apparent southerly movement of Sun, starts on 17-Jul-2015 (Friday) as per Hindu Solar Calendar (sauramAna). As Dakshinayana is replete with festivals, Vrats of immense religious significance, occasions for holy bathing, etc. etc. As physical movement was restricted during this period due to rain and climatic conditions in olden times, the precious time was perhaps dedicated to observing religious activities to advance oneself in the spiritual journey.

From that perspective, I am glad to share a rare hymn called Ahnika Stotram taken from Harivamsha Puranam (Last Canto of Mahabharata) and Chapter 109. This hymn was given to Pradyumna (son of Lord Krishna and Rukimini Devi) by Lord Balarama at former's request but retold by Sage Vaishampayana to King Janamejaya in the purana.

It is mentioned that one who chants this sacred containing 108 sacred names in the evening becomes absolved of all sins and becomes Pavitratma or pUtAtma - in addition the normal benefits like health, wealth, progeny, relief from bondage, fame, etc.

This hymn prays to Devas like Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva; holy waters in all directions; sages; etc. In terms of construct, it is somewhat similar to Vyapohana Stavam from Linga Puranam (which I shared a few months ago) as well as Papa Prashamana Stotram by Sage Agastya in Vamana Puranam. As Pradyumna is seeking for this prayer with an aim to becoming fearless (nirbhayo .a bhavam) this can also be correlated with Sri Narayana Kavacam from Srimad Bhagavatam.

May we pray To the Almighty with this hymn by chanting this in the evenings as prescribed.