Sarva Pitru Amavasya - Significance And Rituals
Sarva Pitru Amavasya is an observance which is dedicated to the ancestors. The term ‘Sarva Pitru’ denotes ‘all forefathers or ancestors’ and the word Amavasya means ‘new moon day’. In the regions of Bengal, the day is observed as ‘Mahalaya’ which signifies the beginning of the celebration of Durga Puja. Thus, this significant day is also known as Mahalaya Amavasya or Sarva Pitra Moksha Amavasya. It is observed in the Bhadrapada month as per Hindu calendar followed in the regions of South India and Ashwin month as per the calendar followed in the regions of North India.
This observance holds immense importance in the Hindu religion. On this day of Sarva Pitru Amavasya which falls on the last Tithi of the Shradh Paksha, devotees perform various Shraadhas. During the Bhadrapada month, this period extends to a total of sixteen days which initiates from Purnima and concludes on this Amavasya.
Following are the rituals:
- On the eve of Sarva Pitru Amavasya, Shraadha rituals and tarpan are performed for the deceased individuals who had died on ‘Purnima’, ‘Amavasya’ or ‘Chaturdashi’ tithi.
- On this particular day, the individuals wake up early morning and perform all the morning rituals. The individuals wear yellow colored clothes and also invite Brahmins to offer food and make donations.
- Usually, the Shraddha ceremony is performed by the most senior male member of the family.
- The observers are required to clean the feet of the Brahmins and make them sit at a holy place.
- On Sarva Pitru Amavasya, the individuals worship and offer prayers to their ancestors by offering them flowers, diya, and dhoop.
- A mixture of barley and water is also offered to the ancestors in order to please them.
- The observer then wears a sacred thread on their right shoulder as well as make donations afterward.
- After concluding with the puja rituals, the Brahmins are served the special meals.
- The observers also sprinkle the sesame seeds where the Brahmins are seated
- To invoke the blessings of the forefathers or ancestors, mantras are recited on a continuous basis.
- The observers show gratitude to the ancestors who have contributed much for the lives of the individuals and also ask for apologies and pray for their salvation and peace.
Significance of Sarva Pitru Amavasya
- The rituals of Sarva Pitru Amavasya hold extreme significance as they are observed to attain prosperity, welfare, and blessings.
- The observers are bestowed with the divine blessings of Lord Yama and the family members are also saved from any kind of evils or obstacles.
- On this spiritual day, it is believed that the ancestors visit the places of observers and if all the shraddha rituals are not performed then they return back unhappily
- As per the Astrological science, it is believed that the past sins or wrong deeds of the ancestors are reflected in the horoscope of their children under the name of Pitru Dosha. And because of this, the children suffer a lot of bad experiences in their lifetime. By observing the rituals, this dosha can be removed and also the blessings of forefathers can be attained
- It helps in getting the blessings of Lord Yama
- The family of the observers gets free from all type of sins and obstacles in their lives
- It helps in relieving the souls of the forefathers and supports them in attaining salvation
- It helps the children in getting bestowed with prosperous and long life.