Smriti Mukta Phalam
21. Determination of Yaajanam (Performance of yagnas for
1. Sruti lays down the rules for Yaajanam - Brahmana wishing to earn money should choose what he likes out of acceptance of Danam, Yaajanam and teaching of Vedas. This is not a rule for daily observance, in the absence of guidelines like ‘if not done, blemish will accrue’. This is wishful action, as one wishing to earn money has right to these karmas. This is not the ‘Apoorva’ rule, as this is only as means of livelihood; not like ‘Agnihotram must be done, Ashtakas must be done’. ‘Apoorva’ rule is one which lays down the rule in the absence of other authority. This is also not ‘Parisankhya’ rule, as one karma does not lead to many fruits. If one karma leads to two activities, in order to prohibit one of them, a rule is laid down and that is called ‘Parisankhya’ rule. For example, in a mantra, both the ropes of horse and donkey are mentioned; but in another mantra, as only horse is cited, horse alone is final. Similarly, fox and dog are mentioned in a mantra; but another mantra cites only fox. This is the rule for yaajanam in case of ‘fallen’ persons. This is like saying ‘yaga should be performed on even ground; one should face east while taking food’ etc.
2. Santoka brahmanam says that the knowledge of Rishis in the mantras is ingredient of Yaajanam - ‘One, who does yaajanam, teaching of Vedas etc. without knowledge of the Rishi, chandas (Vedic metre), Devata and Brahmanam of the mantra, becomes like a tree, falls in ditch, meets destruction, becomes a great sinner, his Vedas become powerless’ - thus blemishes are attributed to him.
3. The passages like ‘if one does yaajanam or accepts danam, he should not eat and chant his Veda three times’ apply to performing yagas for those who are not eligible. Devala also says - ‘The brahmana who for the sake of money does yagas for sudras or for the degraded persons or is made to do yagas by them, is ‘Ayaajya yaajaka’ (one who does yagas for ineligible persons).’
4. Manu - ‘Even high families become low by performing yagas for the undeserving, by sense of disbelief in karmas and absence of study of Vedas. One becomes ‘fallen’ in one year by travelling in the same vehicle with the ‘fallen’, sitting in the same seat with him and eating with him in the same row. By doing yaajanam to the ‘fallen’, teaching them Vedas and marrying the ‘fallen’, he becomes ‘fallen’ the same moment.
5. Devala - ‘One who does yaajanam, marriage, study of Vedas and eating together with the ‘fallen’ becomes himself ‘fallen’ the same moment; no doubt in this. Bodhayana - ‘One who does yaajanam, teaching of Vedas and marriage with the ‘fallen’ becomes himself ‘fallen’ the same moment. By sharing bed and seat one becomes ‘fallen’ in one year.’
6. Aapasthambha - ‘One should not have any contact with the ‘fallen’. Welcoming them with respect, eating with them and marrying them should be avoided.’
7. Vyasa - ‘One who knowingly comes into contact with the ‘fallen’ by sharing vehicle, bed, seat etc. becomes himself ‘fallen’ in one year. One who does yaajanam, marriage, teaching of Vedas and eating together becomes ‘fallen’ the same moment.
8. Samvartha - ‘For ridding oneself of sin, one should do Prayaschitta prescribed for one who was in contact with great sinners like killers of brahmanas.’
9. Yama - ‘Out of the three - acceptance of Danam, teaching of Vedas and yaajanam, they say that acceptance of Danam is the best. The sin accruing out of acceptance of Danam can be got rid of by japa, homam etc., whereas the sin arising from yaajanam is not washed away even by Vedas.’
22. Study of Vedas
1. Sruti says - ‘Veda should be studied; Brahmana should study Vedas along with six parts without any reason’. Hence it is clear that study including learning the meaning of Vedas is prescribed. Mantras whose meanings are not understood are not good enough in highlighting observances. Hence only the one who does karmas knowing the meaning of Vedas attains the desired fruits of karmas; he does not suffer any blemish also. Hence Veda should be studied and meaning should also be learnt.
2. Manu - ‘A brahmana who follows many types of rules and vows like Prajapatya should study Vedas along with its parts and Upanishads.’
3. Manu again - ‘ The brahmana who performs tapas (austerities) should always recite Vedas. Study of Vedas is the best tapas for a brahmana as stated in Veda. Sruti says - ‘Study of Vedas is itself tapas’.
4. The brahmana who does not study Vedas, but studies other things, attains to sudrahood immediately along with his family. Families are destroyed soon by Aasuric (non - Vedic) marriages, non - performance of karmas like jatakarma and dishonouring brahmanas. Even families with meagre resources are reckoned to be good if they study Vedas; they attain much fame. Study of only the sounds of Vedas without knowing the meaning never shines like dry fuel without Agni.
5. Sruti - ‘One who studies Vedas, but does not know their meaning is a pillar carrying weight. One who knows the meanings attains all prosperity. With knowledge he washes away sins and attains Swarga.’
6. Manu - ‘The knower of Vedas and sastras is eligible to lead an army, to run a country, to mete out punishment and to head all people. The knower of Itihasas like Bharata and Ramayana and Puranas and of Padam (word), Vakyam (sentence) and Pramanam (authority) and of Vedas and their parts is eligible to understand the meaning of Vedas.’
7. In Kurmapurana - ‘ A brahmana who does not study Veda, but puts in efforts for other things is called ‘Vedabahya’ (one outside the Vedas). Brahmanas should not converse with that fool. Brahmana should not feel satisfied only with study of Vedas. One who has not picked up the meaning will suffer like a cow caught in slush. One who studies Vedas as stipulated, but has not enquired about their meaning will become sudra along with his family; he will not be a proper brahmana.’
8. Yagnavalkya - ‘One should study that Veda with its parts,which has come to him traditionally. He should observe the karmas given in that Veda only. One who leaves his Veda, but adopts other persons’ Veda, is fit to be boycotted by the virtuous like a sudra in all karmas. After studying one’s own Veda (branch) one can study other Vedas (branches).
9. Manu - ‘ Brahmana without study of Vedas is like an elephant made of wood, deer made of skin. These three carry only the name. Like eunuch with women, bull with bulls, danams with idiots are useless, in the same way brahmana without Veda is useless.’
10. Parasara - ‘The brahmanas who study Veda, those who observe the five Mahayagnas take the three worlds ashore even if they are subject to the five senses.’
11. Samvartha - ‘Veda should be studied in a pure place with steady mind.’
12. Daksha - ‘Study of Veda is fivefold - first learning from Guru, then enquiring the meaning, practising, chanting in brahmayagna and teaching the disciples.’
13. Vyasa - ‘Brahmana should study Veda with diligence according to his ability. He should also teach his disciples. He should practise ‘dharana’ (steadying) in mind. He should also enquire the meaning. One who forgets the Veda he has studied is called ‘Bhrunaha’ (the killer of embryo). He will be born in a low caste,’
14. Manu - ‘One who abandons the refugee without protecting him and who forgets Veda will get over that sin by performing tapas for one year with only barley as food,’
15. Yagnavalkya - ‘It is only Veda which can do much good to brahmanas as it tells about yagas, austerities, auspicious karmas.’
16. Vyasa - ‘The karma undertaken after pronouncing ‘Harih Om’ and study of Veda cause power to grow.’
17. Aapasthambha - ‘Omkara is the way to swarga. Hence before studying Veda one should start with Omkara. In case there is interruption of useless speech, one should start like earlier. If done like this, Veda remains separated from worldly words.’
18. In Aatharvana Sruti - ‘Devas prayed to Omkara for defeating Asuras; they then told Omkara to ask for a desired boon. Omkara then said, ‘Brahmanas should not pronounce Vedas without pronouncing me. If they do so, it should not become Veda.’ Hence Omkara is pronounced at the start of Veda and also at the close.’
23. Teaching of Vedas
In Smritiratna - Pure yaajanam, pure teaching of Vedas, pure acceptance of danam - these three are said to be the means of livelihood of brahmana.
1. Yama tells the rules for teaching of Vedas - ‘Always getting up early in the morning, after completing cleaning of teeth, bath and homam, one should teach Veda to students.’
2. Manu - ‘The Acharya should without sloth always tell the student to ‘start study’ at the beginning. While stopping he should say ‘let it stop’. The son of Guru, attendant, teacher of some other branch of knowledge, one who is attached to Dharma, a pure person, relative, one who is capable of grasping and retaining, the giver of money, well - wisher, gnati (paternal relative) - these ten people may be taught Veda as per dharma. If by teaching someone no dharma or money accrues, service commensurate with knowledge is also not available, such a person should not be taught. Even a good seed if sown in salty soil will be useless; same with knowledge. The teacher of Veda, if he does not get a suitable disciple, may even die without teaching, but even in time of serious danger he should not teach an unsuitable person. The Devata presiding over knowledge told brahmana: ‘I am your treasure. You should protect me. Do not give me to a jealous person. Then I will become very powerful. Teach me to a disciple who is pure, has mastered sense organs and is a brahmachari, who is attentive and protective of the treasure.’
3. Manu - ‘One who learns Vedas stealthily without the permission of Guru, that brahmana thief of Veda will go to hell. Veda should not be taught to one who is not listening and to one who listens without devotion. Even if one is very knowledgeable and wise, he should move about in the world as if he does not know anything. One who listens to Veda without dharma and one who teaches without dharma both are destroyed or at least become enemies.’
4. Manu says that if knowledge, dharma and girl are very good, one can accept them even from low places. The faithful person may accept good knowledge (mantra to remove poison and the like) from a lowly person, high dharma from a person of low caste, superior girl even from a lowly family.
5. Manu explains this with example - One can accept nectar from poison, good word from a boy, good conduct from enemy and gold from an unclean place. One can accept women, gems, knowledge, dharma, purity, good word and different types of sculptures from all. In times of distress brahmana can learn Veda from a kshatriya or a vaisya. Following the Guru and serving him are limited till the time of learning Vedas only. Men of all the three varnas performing their own dharma can study Veda. Brahmana should teach them; certainly not kshatriya and vaisya. People of three varnas - brahmana, kshatriya and vaisya - are known as ‘dwijatis’. Sudra of the fourth varna is known as ‘ekajati’. There is no fifth caste.
6. Haaritha - ‘A brahmana who knows the meaning of mantras and who does japa, homa and teaching of Veda reaches Swarga; if not he reaches naraka.’
7. Narada objects to reading from books only –‘ Vidya learnt on one’s own from books and not from a Guru does not shine in an assembly; like pregnancy of a woman from a secret lover. One who studies Veda without observing sounds through the lines in hand and with improper sound and varna is burnt by the Rik, Yajur and Sama Vedas and is born in a lowly caste.
8. Haaritha - ‘The benefit of teaching of Veda is dharma, money and desire. If even one of the three is not there, then the disciple is called ‘mrishaachari’ (one of false conduct). One who wishes well should not teach him. One should teach suitable disciples; avoid the unsuitable.
9. Yagnavalkya - ‘One can teach as per sastra the following - one who is conscious of the help received, person of compassion, one who is capable of grasping and retaining, pure, free from disease, free from jealousy, virtuous, attendant, relative, teacher of vidya (other), giver of money.
10. Vyasa - ‘One can teach the six persons - man of gratitude,compassionate, wise, good in actions, relative, person liked.’
11. Aapasthambha - ‘The way he learnt from his guru he should teach his disciple and also be attentive in other rules. Such a person establishes in Swarga free from fear, his father, grandfather, greatgrandfather, son, grandson, greatgrandson and himself.’
12. Bodhayana - ‘Teaching one from whom one does not get dharma, money or service in accordance with vidya, is useless like sowing seed in salty soil. Instead of teaching such a disciple, one can die with his vidya untaught. Veda which is not honoured will burn away like fire would burn dry vegetation. Hence Veda should not be taught to one who does not honour Veda. In times of distress, Veda can be learnt even from a kshatriya or vaisya. Following the Guru and serving him are limited till the end of learning only.
13. Gautama - ‘One should have truth, dharma and conduct of the great and teach Veda to disciples.’ Gautama again - ‘ Brahmana learning Veda from a kshatriya or vaisya is only for adversity. Following the Guru and serving him are limited till the end of learning only. If one studies Veda in early morning he should not sleep again.’
14. Manu - ‘One should not learn Veda with swara and varna not being clear and in the presence of sudras. If one studies Veda in early morning he should not sleep again owing to tiresomeness.’
15. Vyasa - ‘It is said that learning on prohibited days, in the presence of sudra and for the sake of receiving money are the cause of narakas.’
16. Vyasa again - ‘Cooking food only for self, indulging in sex only for pleasure and learning of Veda only for livelihood will lead one to many narakas.’
17. Saatatapa - ‘One who uses Veda sounds for money he sells Veda and gets the sin of killing so many embryos.’
18. Saakaleya - ‘Selling of Veda is sixfold - ‘Pragnaapanam, ‘Praadhyayanam, accepting of money, performing yaga and teaching of Veda after demanding (bargaining) and argument. ‘Pragnaapanam’ is announcing in assemblies like the king’s that he knows all the four Vedas. ‘Praadhyayanam’ is learning for the sake of spreading one’s greatness. ‘Prasnapurvam’ (Questioning) refers to all the three - accepting of money, performing yaga and teaching of Veda. ‘Vada’ refers to indulging in argument for the sake of disgracing the opponent and highlighting one’s knowledge.’
19. Saatatapa - ‘One who gives danam to a brahmana because of demand will go first to naraka; followed by the brahmana.’
20. In Smritisangraham - ‘One who inintiates another to Gayatri for a price becomes a chandala even while alive; no doubt.’
21. Saunaka - ‘One who uses Veda sounds for money gets the sin of so many killings of embryos; no doubt. Know that one who pronounces Veda sounds for money or food is chandala, unfit for all karmas.’
22. Yagnavalkya includes study of Vedas and teaching of Vedas for money among ‘upapatakas’ (second category of sins).
24. Discussion of Upakarma
Upakarma (commencement of Vedic study) is determined here. Manu - ‘Brahmana should perform Upakarma as per rules on Sravana Purnima or Proushtapada Purnima and then study Vedas with effort in 4½ months. In Pousha month he should do ‘Utsarjanam’ (ceremony of suspension of Vedic study) outside the village. Or on Sukla paksha prathama in Magha month in forenoon. The explanation is: ‘Sravani for Yajurvedis and Proushtapadi for Samavedis’; ‘utsarjanam’ for yajushas (yajurvedis) in Pousha and for Samagas (Samavedis) in Magha month.
1. Aapasthambha - ‘After performing Upakarma on Sravana Purnima one should not do study of Vedas in the first part of the night for one month. ‘Utsarjanam’ should be done on Pousha Purnima or in Rohini star. Some say that study should be done for 4½ months’.
2. When the sun is in rasis like mesha, whichever Amavasya comes, the months ending on those Amavasya days are months like ‘Chaitra’. Whichever Pournamasa comes in those months, it is called ‘Chaitri’ etc. The name comes because it is associated with that star on occasions. When the sun is in simharasi, in the lunar month ending on Amavasya, the Purnima coming in between is called ‘Sravani’. Whether sravana star is there or not, upakarma should be done on that day as per rules in one’s grihyasutra and as per Atri’s smriti in the time stipulated in the grihyam and Vedic study should be commenced. For one month no study should be done in the first part of the night. Utsarjanam should be done as per the Grihya rules on Pousha Purnima day or on the Rohini star day coming before that day. Study should be done for 5 months; some say 4½ months. As seen in other branches of Veda (like Sama Veda), upakarma should be done on Proushtapadi or utsarjanam should be done earlier.
3. Gautama in the same way - ‘After doing upakarma on Sravani or on Proushtapadi, Vedas should be studied for 4½ or 5 months or for the period of Dakshinayanam at least; this study should be done every year. Bodhayana - ‘After doing Upakarma on Sravana Purnima or on Ashadha Purnima day, utsarjanam should be done on Pousha Purnima or on Magha Purnima day.
4. Yagnavalkya - ‘Upakarma should be done when the crops are fertile, as per Grihya, on Sravana Purnima or on Sravana star day or on Panchami day with Hasta star.’
5. In Smrityarthasara the position is clarified thus: Upakarma should be done as per one’s family practice on Sravana Purnima, on Sravana star in Sravana month, Panchami, Hasta star, day when Panchami and Hasta star occur together, Bhadrapada Purnima, Sravana star of that month, Hasta, Panchami, day when Panchami and Hasta star occur together.’
6. In Kaladarsa also –‘When sun is in Simharasi, persons of Taitriya branch should do upakarma on Sravana Purnima day and Rigvedis on Sravana star day. If this does not happen, it should be done on Hasta cum Panchami day. Upakarma should not be done on day of eclipse or day when sun changes rasi (month beginning - sankramana). If sun is not in Simharasi, Taitriyas should do on Proushtapada Purnima and Rigvedis on Sravana star day. They can also do on Hasta star day in Bhadrapada month.’
7. Gargya - Taitriyas should do upakarma on day when Purnima is there at sunrise; Rigvedis on day when Sravana star is there at sunrise. In case of eclipse or sankramana, upakarma should not be done on that day.
8. Gobila - ‘Taitriyas should do upakarma in Sravana month on day when Purnima is there at sunrise; Rigvedis on day when Sravana star is there at sunrise; Samavedis on Hasta star day. Samavedis should do utsarjanam in forenoon in Pushya star and upakarma in afternoon in Hasta star. Knowers of Veda say that upakarma should be done in afternoon and utsarjanam in forenoon. In upakarma and utsarjanam in the prescribed time Rishis in darbha grass form should be worshipped.
9. Samavedis do upakarma in Kanya month in Krishna paksha on Hasta star day, in case Simha Bhadrapada month is defective with ‘moudhyam’ etc. (Moudhyam refers to the travel of the planet not in the prescribed path, but in a contrary path). Then the time of evening when Hasta star is there for three muhurtas should be taken. In case there is no defect in Simha Bhadrapada, it is done in Sukla paksha in Hasta star in ‘sangavantam’ (end of period of three muhurtas since dawn).
10. In Sangraham - ‘In sukla paksha Hasta star should be there in early morning and in kishna paksha it should extend three muhurtas in evening. In case Hasta star joins Chitra star, it should extend for three muhurtas since dawn.
11. In Tithidarpanam also– ‘ Rig, Yajur and Sama vedis should do upakarma in Sravana month respectively in Sravana star at Oudayiki (dawn), Purnima till sangavantam and Hasta star till sangavantam.
12. Vriddha Gargya - ‘Knowers of tithi say that ‘Oudayika’ (dawn) time is time extending at least upto a ghatika beyond sangavam (3 muhurtas since dawn). Garga - ‘If Purnima extends beyond sangavam the next day, it is suitable for upakarma. In another Smriti, If the junction of Purnima and Pratipada (prathama) occurs after sangavam before noon, upakarma and samidadhanam should be done that day. If this junction occurs before sangavam, upakarma should be done on that day and Samidadhana the next day. This is the rule for upakarma.’
13. In another place it is stated about Yajushas - ‘ If Sravana Purnima extends beyond sangavam it may be considered as ‘Oudayiki’; otherwise not.’
14. Hence upakarma for Yajushas is in Purnima extending at least a little time beyond 12 ghatikas (one ghatika is 24 minutes) from dawn. Upakarma for Samagas is in Hasta star extending at least a little time beyond 12 ghatikas; in case of defects like ‘moudhyam’ in Simha Bhadrapada, it should be done in Kanya month in Krishna paksha in Hasta star extending at least 6 ghatikas in evening. Upakarma for Rigvedis is in Sravana star extending at least 2 ghatikas from dawn.
15. In Sangraham the same way - ‘Upakarma should be done in Sravana star extending at least 2 ghatikas from dawn; it will be fruitful. In Paddhati the same way - Aasvalayana sakhis should do upakarma in Sravana star extending at least 2 ghatikas from dawn.’
16. Gargya - ‘If sankramana or eclipse occurs before midnight, upakarma should not be done that day; if it occurs after midnight there is no defect.’
17. Vasishtha - ‘If Sravana Purnima occurs during malamasa (adhikmasa), pollution after birth, pollution after death, eclipse, sankramana and Guru Sukra moudhya, upakarma should be done on Proushtapada Purnima or Ashadha Purnima. If Sravani has defect, Proushtapadi should be chosen; if Proushtapadi also is defective, Ashadhi should be chosen; if all three are defective, it should be done on Sravani itself.’
18. Vyasa - ‘Out of Sravani, Ashadhi and Proushtapadi, if the former is defective, upakarma should be done on the latter day. If all three are defective it should be done on Sravani itself. Due to Aapasthambha’s rule, as Sravani is important, it should be done on Sravani itself, leaving out Bhadrapada and Ashadha Pournami. Bhargava said that for dvijas doing study of Vedas, as upakarma is part of study, it should certainly be observed. ‘If it occurs when the sun is in Kataka, it should not be done. It should be done only when the sun is in Simha.’ ‘The purnima occurring before Amavasya of Simha month is called ‘Sravani’. Upakarma should be done on that day, whether sun is in Simha or not.’ Such contradictions are to be resolved with different places in view - ‘In areas to the south of Narmada, upakarma should be done when the sun is in Kataka. In the northern areas it should be done when the sun is in Simha.’ Andhras, Maharashtrians, Kannadigas, Kayasthas – these are in southern part; others are in areas north of Narmada, according to the elders.
19. Vriddha Manu - ‘The first upakarma should not be done during ‘moudhya’ of Guru and Sukra and in malamasa; if he does he will be destroyed.’
20. Gautama says that as Manu has laid down upakarma as important, the first upakarma can also be done. This means that it can be done by doing ‘santhi’.
21. Brihaspati - ‘The first upakarma should be done in Sravanam, Proushtapadam or Ashadham, free from defect. If all three months are defective, it should be done in Sravana itself after doing ‘santhi’ with homam, japa and danam with mantras as in Grihayagna.’
22. In Paddhatigrantha - ‘ In case of Guru ‘moudhyam’, ‘santi homam’ should be done to Guru with the mantra ‘Brihaspate Adhiyat’. In case of Sukra ‘moudhyam’, ‘santi homam’ should be done to Sukra with the mantra ‘Pravachchukraya’. In case of malamasa, ‘santi homam’ should be done to Chandra with the mantra ‘Aapyayaswa’. In case of solar eclipse and sankramanam, ‘santi homam’ should be done to Sun with the mantras, ‘Chitandevanam, Udutyanjatavedasam, Suryodevim, Udvayam, Aasatyena and Devovah’. In case of lunar eclipse, ‘santi homam’ should be done to Chandra with six mantras including ‘Somadhenum’ and mantra, ‘Navonavah’. After ‘santi homam’, the upakarma homam should be done.’
23. When sun is in Kataka rasi, the first upakarma should not be done; it should be done only when sun is in Simha.
24. In Sarvabhoumiyam, it is stated that passage like ‘even in case of ‘moudhyam’, ‘balyam’, ‘vardhakam’ for Guru and Sukra, upakarma should be done in Sravani like a nitya karma’ is to be taken to mean that if the ‘sakhadheesa (deity presiding over a sakha, branch of Veda) is strong, upakarma can be done.
25. In Sarvabhoumiyam itself - ‘’Guru, Sukra, Kuja and Budha are the ‘sakhadheesas’ for Rik, Yajur, sama and Atharva sakhas. When the ‘sakhadheesa’ is powerful, study of that sakha is auspicious. Passages like: ‘If either Guru or Sukra, who is not ‘sakhadheesa’ is having ‘moudhyam’ and if the other who is ‘sakhadheesa’ is in his own rasi, his favourable rasi or friendly rasi or if they have attained ‘moudhyam’ in their own rasi, ‘moudhya defect is not there’ mean that if sukra is strong Yajushas can do upakarma even in ‘moudhya’ of Guru. Similar in case of ‘moudhyam’ of Sukra etc. Only if the ‘sakhadheesa’ is powerless, upakarma should not be done in cases of defects like ‘moudhyam’. Some say that even if ‘sakhadheesa’ is strong and if defect is there in all three months, upakarma should be done in Sravana month after doing ‘santhi’.
26. This upakarma is common to grihastha and brahmachari, as Manu and others have prescribed upakarma among grihastha dharmas; Devala states, ‘upakarma and utsargam are prescribed for vanaprasthas also; also for grihasthas and brahmacharis studying Veda for retention’; Vyasa states, ‘Grihastha should also do the study like a brahmachari with discipline’; Sounaka states, ‘One who has completed ‘samavarthanam’ (ceremony of completion of Vedic learning from Guru) should do as per rules for brahmachari; one who has not had ‘samavarthanam’ should do as per common sense’. Here as the word ‘kalpa’ has been used, for grihastha, mekhala (girdle), deerskin and staff are not necessary; but non - contradictory acts like wearing of upavita, tarpana and homam etc. should be done.
27. Bharadvaja sets out the rule for wearing upavita - ‘After bath, pure, after washing feet, in a clean place, wearing ‘pavitram’ in the hand, after achamanam, sitting on seat of darbha grass, silent, after doing Pranayamam, chanting mantra with Devata, upavita should be worn in the neck. Upavita should be lifted with right hand over the head. For grihastha and vanaprastha, mantra and achamanam are prescribed for each upavita.
28. Sandilya - ‘No action should be carried out with wet clothes on; if done it will be demonic act; hence it should certainly be avoided. In upakarma new upavita etc. should be worn. Whether the one worn earlier is new or old, it should be discarded.’
29. In Smritisaram - ‘In upakarma, mounjee (girdle of darbha), yagnopavita, katisutram (waistband), cloth etc. - all these should be worn new.
30. In all the four vratas (vows), it is stipulated this way. Girdle, deerskin, staff, clth, yagnopavita - these should be worn new in a vrata, discarding the old.
31. Kapardi - ‘In Sravana Purnima Taittiriya sakhis should offer tarpanam of til (gingelly) water three times to Prajapati and other devas.’
32. In upakarma tonsuring of head is essential for brahmacharis, as Vaikhanasa sutra says: ‘In Sravana Purnima tonsuring should be done for the disciple’; Smriti passages like: ‘No tonsure for 3 rutus (6 months) after Choulam; in the same way no tonsure without upakarma in 6 months after upanayanam’. In this, defects of tithi, day of week etc. should not be considered, as Vasishtha says: ‘In karma laid down by sastra, tonsure should be done without consideration of defect of time; in case of death of father and mother also it is the same way.’
33. Thus every year upakarma should be observed on Sravani. Katyayana - ‘When brahmanas do upakarma with utsarjanam every year, Vedas gain more power and completeness. When brahmanas do anything even sportingly with Vedas full of power, it is cause for success in all their activities always.’
25. Discussion of Anadhyaya (non - study of Vedas)
1. Manu - ‘After doing Veda utsarjanam in this manner as per sastras outside the village, study should not be done that day, that night and the next day; or at least that day and night. After this non - study, Vedas should be studied in sukla paksha and Vedangas in Krishna paksha as per rules.
2. Doing upakarma and study in this way is common to snathakas (those who have graduated from Gurukul) and brahmacharis. The non - study periods, now going to be explained, must be avoided by the disciple as well as the guru. No study in three days during upakarma and utsarjanam. No study for one day during ashtakas and end of rutus (two - month seasons). ‘Three days during upakarma and one day in utsargam’ as per Vignaneswariyam. Non - study for one day on the day of hoisting of Indra’s flag (Bhadrapada sukla dvadasi) and lowering of the flag (Aasvayuja sukla dvadasi).
3. Vignaneswariyam says that Gautama’s instruction, ‘Non - study for 3 days if dog, mongoose, frog, snake or cat crosses the path; also ‘vipravasa’ (dwelling away from one’s home) should be done.’ refers to first study.
4. Manu - ‘The knowers of Vedic study say that no study should be done during rainy season if there is strong wind with high noise in the night or duststorm in the day. Manu also says that no study be done in case of lightning, thunder, rain, comet for period of Aakalam. The time of 60 ghatikas from the time of lightning etc. is called Aakalam. If lightning etc. occur during twilight in rainy season, they become causes of Aakalika non - study.
5. Manu himself says that it is not in other times - ‘If these happen during twilight then it is ‘Aakalika Anadhyayam’. In seasons other than rainy season if there is a lot of cloud it will be ‘Aakalika Anadhyayam’. Dropping of thunderbolt, earthquake, and trouble to planets – if these happen in any season, it will be ‘Aakalika Anadhyayam’.
6. One should not even think in mind about Veda – in a village where there is corpse; in front of one who is opposed to dharma; where there is weeping sound; in a crowd; in water; in midnight; while passing urine or stools; in impure state and while taking food in sraadha. Three days of Anadhyayana when accepting danam in Ekoddishta sraadham like Nava sraadham; when son is born to the king and hence impure; during eclipse. ‘Three days during eclipse’ is to be related to the start and end of eclipse, as Smriti says, ‘one day of Anadhyayana in eclipse of sun and moon’.
7. Vedic study is prohibited while one is lying down, keeping one foot on the other, tying feet with cloth and eating non - vegetarian food and is impure (due to birth of child) food.
8. Anadhyayana in snow, in noise of arrows, in the two twilights, in Amavasya, Chaturdasi, Purnima and Ashtami, in dusty condition, when fire is burning in different directions, in the noise or presence of fox, dog, donkey and camel. Anadhyayana close to cremation ground, near village, in cow - pen, wearing cloth used during union and after accepting danam in sraadham. Anadhyayana if any danam is accepted with hand in sraadham, whether alive or lifeless; as the hand is the mouth for a brahmana, acceptance of danam with hand is same as eating food.
9. Anadhyayana in quarrel; fisticuff etc.; in army, in armed warfare; immediately after food; during indigestion; after vomiting; in sour mouth. Anadhyayana when permission is not taken from guest; when there is heavy wind; when blood flows from one’s body; when injured with a weapon. When the sound of Sama Veda is heard; after studying Upanishad, which comes at the end of Veda; after studying Arunaketukam; one should not study Rik and Yajur Vedas.
10. Manu talks about Anadhyayana of Rik and Yajur Vedas when Sama Veda sound is heard - ‘Rik Veda is of Devas; Yajur Veda is of humans; Sama Veda is of Pitrus; hence the sound of Sama veda is like incongruent.
11. Anadhyayana for one day if cow, frog, cat, dog, snake, mongoose or mouse cross between guru and disciple. Anadhyayana if the place is unclean or if one’s body is unclean. As Anadhyayana is strictly mentioned in these two cases, it is clear that in other cases Adhyayana can proceed with permission in adversity.
12. Narada - ‘Anadhyayana during Ayanam, Vishuvam, Sayanadvadasi, Uthanadvadasi, Manvadis and yugadis.’
13. Manvadis are mentioned in Matsyapurana - ‘Asvayuja sukla navami, Karthika sukla dvadasi, Chaitra sukla tritiya, Bhadrapada sukla tritiya, Phalguna Amavasya, Pushya sukla ekadasi, Ashadha sukla dasami, Magha sukla saptami, Sravana Krishna ashtami, Ashadha purnima, Karthika purnima, Phalguna purnima, Chaitra purnima, Jyeshta purnima - these 14 days are Manvadis. Danam given on these days will bring complete benefit.
14. Yugadis are enumerated in Vishnupurana - ‘Vaisakha sukla tritiya, Karthika sukla navami, Proushtapada Krishna trayodasi, Magha Amavasya - these are the four yugadis.
15. Vyasa - ‘No study in the shade of certain trees including kapitha.’
16. Haaritha - ‘No study on Mahanavami, dvadasi, Bharani, Parvas, Akshayatritiya and Rathasaptami; also during application of oil on body and bath. Here dvadasi refers to Sravana dvadasi and Bharani refers to Bhadrapada Bharani, as confirmed by Vriddhagargya - ‘Two stars should be avoided during study. They are - Sravana during dvadasi, Bharani in Mahalaya paksha.’
17. Satyatapas - ‘In sukla dvadasi of Ashadham, Bhadrapadam and Karthikam, if stars Anusha, Sravana and Revathi join, no study of Vedas.’
18. Gargya - ‘In rainy season, on days of 16 stars from Anusha to Mrigasirsha, no study for 3 days in case of heavy rain and 1 day in case of light rain.’
19. Jabali - ‘If one studies on Prathama day he will lose sharpness; if on Chaturdasi day his grasp of Vedas will go down; hence these days should be avoided for Vedic study. Hanuman says in Ramayana - ‘Sita who is normally thin has become thinner due to separation from Rama, like the knowledge of one who has the habit of studying Veda on prathama day.’
20. Bodhayana - ‘In the two twilights and in Maharatri, no study. The sandhya in morning - 3 ghatikas and the sandhya in evening - 3 ghatikas; Maharatri is 4 ghatikas.’
21. Vruddhagautama - ‘Scholars say that no study should be done for one year if elephant or tiger goes in between guru and disciple; if hare, the eater of dog and goat cross, then six months.’
22. Gautama - ‘ One day’s sudy in time of duststorm during day; noisy winds in night; the sound of cracker, beri, mrudangam, chariot and grieving person; the sound of dog, fox and donkey; red rainbow, dew, sighting of clouds in unexpected time; passing of urine and stools; maharatri; two sandhyas; in water; when country is in trouble; danger of fire; end of Veda; vomiting; food during sraadham or seemantham.’
23. Aapasthambha - ‘No Vedic study in road junctions; not within ‘samyaprasa’ distance from cremation ground (if a peg used for tying is thrown, the distance it will travel before dropping on ground is called ‘samyaprasam’). There is no prohibition if a land which was earlier cremation ground is now a village or field. The actual place of cremation should be avoided and not a distance of ‘samyaprasam’.’
24. Aapasthambha again - ‘Anadhyayana in entire night if thunder is heard during evening sandhya. If lighting is there at that time, no study for the part of night till waking from sleep (3 yamas only). In case of lightning in daybreak or in time when a cow in ‘samyaprasam’ distance can be identified as black or red, then no study the next day till Pradosham.’
25. Aapasthambha again - ‘No study in day till Pradosham if sound of thunder is heard in ‘dahram’ time of ‘apara ratri’. Some say that no study even if thunder sound is heard after midnight. (The third part of night is ‘apara ratri’. The last third part of ‘apara ratri’ is ‘dahram’.) This is in rainy season. About other seasons, he adds - ‘The season other than rainy season is called ‘Apartu’ in that particular area. Three days of Anadhyayana in case of lightning, thunder and rain occurring together in Apartu. If one or two of these three occur, Aakalam (60 ghatikas) Anadhyayana.’
26. In Smrityarthasara - ‘Vedangas, Nyaya, Mimamsa and Dharmasastras should be studied on days other than chaturdasi, ashtami, parvas and prathama. Scholars say that in case Anadhyaya tithi is there either at dawn or dusk for 3 muhurtas (6 ghatikas), no study during that day and night. Some people in some areas say that Anadhyayana bar extends only for the ghatikas of the Anadhyaya tithi and not beyond that time. If Amavasya is found even for a short time in the day time of Chaturdasi, Anadhyayanam in the previous Adhika trayodasi.
27. In Smrityarthasara again – ‘There is no Anadhyaya for Pranava, vyahritis, Gayatri and Gayatri siras and for mantras in nitya and occasional karmas, in vows (vratas), in yagna, in kratu, in karmas of special intent (kamya karmas) and in Archana of Devatas.
28. Aapasthambha - ‘Anadhyaya is for learning mantras only and not for using them in karmas.’
29. In Sangraha - ‘Mantras other than Sri Rudram, Pavamani and mantras with regulation should be chanted little during Anadhyaya and very little in parva.’
30. Manu - ‘There is no Anadhyayana in Upakarma, Brahma yagna (in Vedanga) and in Homa mantras.
31. In Kurmapurana - ‘There is no Anadhyayana for Vedangas, Itihasas, Puranas and Dharma sastras. They should not however be studied in Parvas.’
32. In Kaladarsa - ‘If there is sankramanam in the night, Anadhyayana during that night and the previous and following day times. If there is sankramanam in the day, Anadhyayana during that day and the previous and following nights. In case prohibited tithi is present for more than 2 muhuthams during the day, that tithi is Anadhyayana.; where there is doubt, follow Anadhyayana. If the next tithi is prohibited, no study during the previous night.’
33. Bodhayana - same as above.
34. Haaritha - ‘No study in the night previous to the prohibited day and also in Chaturmasya dvitiyas. Ashadha, Karthika and Phalguna Krishna paksha dvitiyas are called Chaturmasya dvitiyas.’
35. Gautama - ‘The three days from Purnami in Karthika, Phalguna and Ashadha months and in Ashtakas, three days from saptami - Anadhyayana.’
36. Vruddhagargya spells out Pradosha Anadhyayas - In case of saptami or trayodasi within two yamas of the night, it is called Pradosha. That period is prohibited for all study. If chaturthi occurs within 9 ghatikas of night, it is Pradosha. That is period prohibited for Vedic study. If the beginning or end of trayodasi occurs at least for a short while in the evening, it is Pradosham. No sound should be pronounced then. One yamam at the beginning of the night when trayodasi occurs is Pradosham. The wise man should keep silent during that time. Taking food, uniting with woman, travel, oil bath, darshan of Vishnu and other auspicious acts are prohibited during Pradosham.
37. Vruddhamanu - No study in the night before midnight on trayodasi, saptami and chaturthi days; if what is studied is not to be forgotten. If trayodasi occurs in the night before close of two yamams, no karma should be done. Except Sivapuja all karmas during that early part of night will get spoiled.
38. In Skandam - On trayodasi day after sunset Pradosham is for three muhurtams. One should not even think of desires during that time. Silence should be observed till midnight. During Pradosham, on Sunday and in chararasi, even if a meagre part of loan is repaid, the balance loan will be settled soon; no doubt.
39. Likhita - Anadhyaya periods for brahmanas are like ‘holes’ (defects); if study is done during those periods, the Veda learnt will drain away like water from a hole in a pot. Rakshasas take away his wealth, Veda, fame, strength and the fruit of Veda.
40. In Smrityarthasara - ‘No study in early night if chaturthi occurs for 9 ghatikas in early night or if saptami or trayodasi occurs before midnight.
41. In different Smriti - ‘No study during krishna paksha tritiyas of Phalgunam, Ashadham and Karthikam and on Asvayuja sukla tritiya. Even a disciplined person should not study during Anadhyayana period; if he does he becomes a thief. Yama takes away the intellect, life, wealth, Veda, power and vigour of one who studies during Anadhyayana. Indra will hit with vajrayudha due to fear of erosion of power of Veda. The breaker of rule will finally become brahmarakshasa; he will certainly go to naraka. Knowers of ancient stories quote Yama’s words - ‘One who teaches Veda being impure and one who learns Veda being impure, one who studies during Anadhyayana period, his life I take away; or at least his intellect. Hence even a disciplined person should not study during Anadhyayana period.’
26. Danam (ceremonial giving with mantra)
1. Sruti - ‘All beings eulogise that danam alone is the way for liberation. There is nothing more difficult than danam; hence great people sport in danam.’ Another Sruti passage - ‘Danam becomes dakshina for yagas; hence it is the best. All beings in the world live on the support of the giver. Persons defeated enemies with danam. Through danam enemies become friends. Everything is established in danam. Hence danam is said to be the best way for liberation.’
2. Manu - ‘One who is begged for danam should give at least a little without grumbling. It may so happen that the requesting person may be able to release the giver from all sins.
3. Yagnavalkya - ‘Every day danam should be given to a proper person as per one’s ability. On occasions like eclipse danam should specially be given. If anybody begs, danam should be given with faith as per ability. A wise man who is keen on his welfare should give cow, land, til, gold etc. to a suitable and worthy person; not to unsuitable person.’
4. Devala - ‘Brahmanas say that danam is described in four ways in Vedas - ‘dhruvam’, ‘aajasrikam’, ’kamyam’ and ‘naimittikam’. Dhruvam is establishing drinking water fountain, flower garden, tank etc.; this will confer all desired fruit. Danam given daily is called Aajasrikam. Danam given for getting child, success, prosperity, woman, boys is Kamyam. Naimittikam is threefold - dependent on time, action or money. It is either with or without homam.’
5. Vyasa - ‘Danam is fourfold - nityam, naimittikam, kamyam and vimalam. Danam given daily to a brahmana who has not helped in any manner, as per ability without expectation of fruit is called nityam. Danam given to scholars for removal of sins is naimittikam. Rishis call danam as kamyam if given for getting child, success, prosperity, swarga. Danam given to Brahmavettas (knowers of Brahman) with devotion for pleasure of God is Vimalam; this is auspicious. Danam is satvikam if given for the sake of giving in holy place in auspicious time to a suitable person who has not helped in any manner. Danam is rajasam if given as return help or with expectation of fruit and given with trouble. Danam is tamasam if given without observing rules of place and time and suitability of recipient and given without honour, with disrespect. The fruit of satvic danas is enjoyed in state of Deva, that of rajasic danas in state of human and that of tamasic danas in state of animal. It is proper to weep loudly as if lost to thieves, even if one day is gone without danam. The wealth is useless if not spent for dharma, for enjoyment or for fame. Hence if money is received with or without one’s effort, it should be given to brahmanas. One should not proudly talk about his dharma. If one has the ability, but still does not give to a brahmana who begs piteously, that fool will go to hell. The two letters ‘Naasti’, ‘Naasti’ (I don’t have) uttered in previous birth reach him again in changed form as two letters ‘Dehi’, ‘Dehi’ (Give). One who stops others from giving to cow, brahmana, agni and Devata will become cow etc.’
6. Manu - ‘ The giver of water receives satisfaction; giver of food, unremitting pleasure; giver of til, desired child; giver of lamp, good eyes; giver of land, land; giver of gold, long life; giver of house, excellent houses; giver of silver, good appearance; giver of cloth, realm of Chandra; giver of horse, the realm of Asvini devatas; giver of bull, a lot of wealth; giver of cow, the realm of Sun; giver of vehicle and bed, good wife; giver of fearlessness, prosperity; giver of foodgrain, constant happiness; giver of Veda, its equivalent. Of danas like water, food, cow, land, cloth, til, gold, ghee etc., dana of Veda is the best. Whichever object is given with whichever desire, he receives that object in the next birth, worshipped by it and with the desire fulfilled.’
7. It is not enough if the giver of danam worships the recipient alone; both giver and recipient should also worship the material given, says Manu. One who receives a holy material and one who gives a holy material, both reach swarga. One should not be surprised at his own tapas; No lying after performing yaga. Even in grief, one should not blame brahmanas. After giving danam, one should not talk about it. Yaga is reduced in merit by lying; tapas by surprise; life by criticism of brahmana; danam by talking about. Even water should not be given to ‘paitala vratika’, ‘bhagavratika’ and one who does not know Veda. Even if the money is earned by proper means, if given to these three persons, it will trouble the giver and the recipient in the next world. The foolish giver and recipient drown and are destroyed, like one who wishes to cross river in a raft made of stone.
8. Manu describes ‘paitala vratika’ and ‘bhagavratika’ - ‘Showing external symbols of dharma, ever avaricious, treacherous, hiding faults behind cloak of goodness, deceiving everyone - this is paitala vratika. Looking downwards, harming others deceitfully, ever keen on acting selfishly, with false devotion – this is bhagavratika.
9. Manu again - ‘Brahmanas who are bhagavratikas and marjara vratikas go to hell called Andhatamisram. One who lives wearing only the cloak of asramis like brahmachari, but breaking the rules of that asram, incurs sin; gets animal birth also.’
10. Yagnavalkya - ‘Cow with golden horns, silver hoofs, cloth, bronze vessel and dakshina and of good quality and milk - producing should be given in danam. One who gives thus lives in swarga for as many years as the number of hair on the cow’s body. If it is lactating cow it enables upto seven generations to reach good state. One who gives in danam ‘ubhayatomukhi’ (pregnant) cow will live in swarga for as many years as the number of hair on the body of cow and calf. When the head and the two legs of calf are seen during delivery, that cow is called ‘bhumi’, till the calf drops to the ground.
11. One who gives in danam cow even without golden horns etc., which is not diseased, not thin, with young calf or not barren, attains high position in swarga. Assisting one who is in trouble or those with disease, worshipping Devatas, washing the feet of brahmanas and cleaning their food leavings are equivalent to danam of cow.
12. Yagnavalkya again - ‘Giver of danam of lamp, horse, food, cloth, water, til, ghee, public resthouse, kanya, gold, bull will go to swarga.’
13. House, foodgrains, fearlessness, footwear, umbrella, garland, sandalpaste, vehicle, tree, desired object, bed - one who gives these in danam will attain great comfort. Veda is of the form of all dharmas. Danam of Veda is the best of danams. Giver of Veda in danam will reach Brahmaloka, never to leave. The danam of Veda makes the recipient possess it, but Veda also does not leave the giver, as it is not possible.
14. Danam of dharma is also mentioned in smritis - ‘ Danam of religious merit (punya) can be given to Devatas, gurus and parents. Sin should never be given in danam; If given, it will increase. Because of greed etc, the recipient also gets sin. ‘The evil - minded one who receives sin knowing that it is large, will incur so much sin; as smriti says, he will get sin equal to the giver, or twice or 1000 times or immeasurable sin.
15. Saatatapa - ‘’ One who gives til, is clean with bath of til, does til homam, or gives danam of til will live for a hundred years.
16. Samvartha - ‘Danam given to srotriya (brahmana well versed in Vedas), born in good clan and who asks is of great strength. That which is most liked in the world, that which is abundant at home should be given to person of good qualities, if the giver is desirous of having it without decline. One who gives tambulam (betel leaf) becomes wise and handsome. The right disposal for wealth obtained with great effort and more prescious than life is danam; rest is all danger. Wealth not used in danam, enjoyment, fame and dharma is useless. When one has one handful of food, if a beggar comes, why cannot half of it be given to him. Who is going to get wealth as desired and when. One who gives agni with a lot of firewood during winter gets wisdom, good form and improvement of agni in stomach (jatharagni). One who gives girl decorated with jewels and cloth goes to swarga. Lactating cow, horse, til, elephant, chariot, maidservant, house, girl, gold, gems - danams of these ten are called Mahadanams. One who gives oil, amla etc. gets happiness and comfort always. One who gives two decorated and attractive bulls, along with plough and the bar will become free from sins and live in swarga, with all wishes fulfilled, for as many years as the number of hair on the bulls. One who gives the best and vegetated land and ‘ubhayatomukhi’ (pregnant) cow to a brahmana well versed in Vedas, will live in swarga for as many years as the roots of the plants and the hair on the cow. The first product of Agni is gold; Land is Vishnu’s; Cows are the children of sun. Hence one who gives these three in effect gives all three worlds. Of all danams, danam of food is the best; as food is the life for all beings. The giver of ‘mruttika’ (mud), cowdung, darbha grass, upavitam and upper cloth to a good brahmana will be born in a good family. The giver of tambulam (betel leaf) and adjuncts for cleaning of teeth, bath, cleansing of feet and cleansing of organs of excretion will get purity of mind. One who does tonsure and cutting of nails for brahmacharis and sanyasis will get good eyes. One who lights lamp in temple, houses of brahmanas and road junctions will get knowledge and good eyes. If a brahmana begs another for some material, that material should be given. Even if that object is of meagre value, equal to grass or piece of wood, that danam is equal to danam of cow.
17. Manu - ‘They call danam of cow, land and vidya as ‘Atidanam’. Of danams, danam of food is very good. Danam of vidya is even better. Of vidyas, Brahmavidya is the best. Hence the giver of Brahmavidya gets the benefit of swarga and moksha (liberation). Danam of this whole earth is not equal to the danam of knowledge and dharma to those who do not have them.
18. In Smritisara samuchchayam - ‘All yagas performed with generous dakshinas on one side; saving the life of a living being afflicted with fear on the other side; even if the fruit of the Mahayagas may diminish at some time, there is no diminution in the fruit of granting security.
19. Sandilya - ‘All danams should be given only to those who do not ask. Food, vidya and girl - these three should not be given to one who does not ask. If what is promised is not given, or if what is given is taken away, the punya accrued from danam right from birth will be destroyed. One who stops giving to cow, agni and brahmanas will be born 100 times as animal and then gets the births of chandala. The giver of food during famine and of gold and cloth during prosperous period lives in swarga in a high position.
20. Devala - ‘The quantity of the material given in danam is not the reason for greatness of danam. Faith and devotion add to or detract from the danam. Cleanliness of body, purity of mind, kindness to those who ask, respect and freedom from anger are called faih in danam. The six elements of danam are the giver, recipient, faith, material given as per dharma, place and time. The giver is eulogised if he is free from sin and disease, of a dharmic mind, desirous of giving, peaceful, pure, not censured and of auspicious deeds. As food, vidya, girl, cloth, cow, land, gold, horse and elephant are superior, danams of these are called ‘uttama’ (superior) danams. Danam of cloth, house, eatables and medicine is called ‘madhyama’ (intermediate) danam. Danam of footwear, servant, vehicle,umbrella, vessel, seat, lamp, firewood and fruit is called ‘charama’ (low) danam. By talking frequently and highly and regretfully of yaga, danam and Vedic study done by oneself, he will lose the fruit; his lustre will diminish and he will come to grief. Hence one should not unnecessarily talk about the punya he has done.
21. Brihaspati - ‘Hence danams - ‘santhikam’, ‘asisham’ and ‘poushtikam’ should be given in a humble manner.’
22. Aapasthambha - ‘All danams must be given with water. In yaga this rule does not apply.’
23. The reasons for begging are Acharya, marriage, yaga, desire to look after parents, non - performance of disciplines like Agnihotram etc. One should give considering the qualities of the begging individual and as per one’s ability, as there will be blemish if not given. Begging of garland, sandalpaste etc. for pleasing the senses will not be reason for danam; if not given, there is no blemish. Example - When wife with dharma and child is alive, second marriage cannot be reason for begging; if there is no son, it can then be reason.
24. In Bhavishyottara Puranam - ‘Those who give gold to the one who prays, vidya to ‘urdhvaretas’ (self - controlled) and girl to one who does not have a son reach high worlds.
25. Gautama - Danam is necessary to one who begs for gurudakshina, marriage and medicine, one with no livelihood, one who does yaga daily, one who does Vedic study, wayfarer and one who is poor after performing Viswajit yaga; this danam is given in yaga outside the yagnavedi (altar); if not given, blemish attaches. For other persons who beg, danam of food should be done. Even if promised, no danam should be given for adharma. Angry man, one who cannot distinguish between good and bad owing to too much of pleasure, one who is afraid, sufferer, idiot, boy, old man, intoxicated person, mad man - as the words of these people are false, there is no sin for the giver for not giving even after promise.
26. Bodhayana - ‘Beings are dependent on food. Veda says ‘food is prana (life breath)’. Hence danam of food should be done, as food is very good ‘havis’ (oblation).’
27. Vyasa - ‘Danam is giving with faith when a suitable person is available. That will give enjoyment and liberation. One who gives land to Ahitagni brahmana, will reach very good position free from grief. There is no danam higher than land. Danam of food is equal to that. Danam of Vidya is higher than that.
28. In Bharatam in Aanusanikam - Devas and Rishis praise food. Worldly activities and yagas are established in food alone. There is no danam equal to danam of food; there never will be. One who wishes for wealth should feed high souled brahmana and bhikshu, even by troubling one’s family. Of danams, danam of water is very good, said Manu. Hence wells, tanks and lakes should be dug. In summer the person, whose water supply is available without hindrance, will never undergo any trouble. One who wishes for strength, fame and nourishment should be pure and good in mind and give danam of ghee to brahmanas.
29. Upamanyu - One, who gives Sivalingam or figure of Siva in gold or silver to devotee of Siva after performing Pooja with devotion, will get merit of the best of all danams; after the fall of body he will become head of Sivaganas and be happy with them. One who gives the figure of Salagrama with dakshina to devotee of Vishnu after performing Pooja with devotion will get merit of the danam of land of 50 crore yojanas; after the fall of body he will go to Vishnuloka. One who gives danam, as per his capacity, of figure of Vasudeva in gold, on the bed of Adisesha, along with Lakshmidevi and wearing conch and discus will be honoured in Vishnuloka.
30. Vyasa - Danam of cow, land and gold and yama and niyama (control of internal and external sense organs) is not equal to one - sixteenth of danam of house. One who builds matham with stones near temple of Siva will go to Sivaloka and live for many kalpas. One who rescues cow from slush, brahmana woman from service and brahmana from lack of livelihood and murder will be rid of sin committed from birth to death. Performing ceremonies to unattended corpse, performing Pooja to unattended Lingam and helping the poor and blind will remove all sins.
31. Yogisvara - One who looks at his reflection in cow’s ghee together with gold in vessel of copper and gives it to brahmana will be rid of all sins and reach good state. One, who takes money from evil persons and gives it to the good and helps them, releases himself and the owner of the money from sins; this is certain.
27. Dana Mantras
1. In Smritiratnam - mantra for danam of kanya (daughter): ‘I give this beautiful kanya with golden jewels to you, who is in the form of Vishnu, with desire to attain Brahmaloka.’ Mantra for danam of book: ‘I give this book, the seat of all knowledge, the source of wisdom and having good writing. May Saraswati be pleased.’ In danam of Salagramam: ‘Please accept, O best among brahmanas! this stone, born in the mountain of salagrama, remover of sin, along with golden flowers (coins).’ In danam of figure of Narayana: ‘O Narauana Kesava, wearing conch and discus, and lord of worlds, with this danam please remove my great disease.’ In Uma Maheswara danam: ‘May Maheswara, wearing elephant skin, creator of worlds, together with Parvati and of auspicious form bless me. As this world full of moving and non - moving objects is of the form of Siva and Sakthi, with this danam Bhagavan may bless me with all auspiciousness.’ In Sivalinga danam: ‘May Bhagavan, living in Kailasa, the lord of Gauri and of the form of Linga, grant me my desires.’ In danam of food - ‘Food is of the form of all devas. Hence please remove my sins.’ In danam of sugar - ‘ Sugar, element of nectar, essence of sugarcane, is pleasing to Sun. Hence please remove my sins.’ In danam of ghee pot after seeing one’s shadow: ‘O ghee! Please remove sins from all my body parts for elimination of Alakshmi. Please grant me Lakshmi and nourishment.’ In danam of peas: ‘The peas proected by Hari earlier in Govardhana hill are capable of destroying all sins. Hence remove my sins.’ In danam of urid dal: ‘ As Mashas (urid dal) were born of Vishnu’s body while in Madhuvana, they are pleasing to Pitrus. Hence please remove my sins.’ In danam of beans: ‘Mudgas (beans) are pleasing to Brahma. Hence remove my sins.’ In danam of rice: ‘Annam (food) is got by cooking of rice used for Vaisvadevam. Annam enables the retention of life (prana) in beings.’ In tambula danam: ‘Arecanut is Brahma. Betel leaf is Vishnu. Lime is Iswara. By giving these may I get wealth.’ In danam of vegetables: ‘I give vegetables which satisfy all devas and humans. May I get all desires and auspiciousness.’ In danam of water; ‘By giving life to all beings water is of the form of all. Hence please grant me punya of the greatest of all danas and removal of sins.’ In danam of woollen shawl: ‘I give this woollen shawl, which will relieve the fear and troubles of cold winds and which is praiseworthy. Please remove my sins.’ In danam of footwear: ‘I give this footwear, which will protect from thorns etc. and give comfort in all places. Please remove my sins.’ In danam of medicine: ‘Medicine is the means of survival of beings and is eternal. By danam of medicine one gets release from all sins.’ In danam of pumpkin gourd: ‘Pumpkin gourd is having til and ghee. Please remove my sins so that my sons and grandsons will grow.’ In danam of Sun: May Sun, who is seated in lotus and holds lotuses in both hands, shines like lotus, has seven horses as mount, teacher of world and has a crown, bless me. You are punya among punyas, auspiciousness among various items of auspiciousness and worn by Vishnu. Hence please remove my sins.’ In salagrama danam: ‘ In the wheel of the salagrama stone, all 14 worlds are present. Hence may Vishnu become pleased with this danam.’ In danam of iron: ‘O iron! Implements like plough are subject to you; hence remove my sins.’ In danam of goat: ‘O goat! You are part of yagas; also vehicle of Agni. Hence remove my sins.’ In danam of copper: ‘Copper cleanses, pleases all devas and protects all. Hence remove my sins.’ In danam of bronze: ‘Bronze is clean in both worlds, suitable as vessel, pleasing to mind and it removes sins. Hence remove my sins.’ In danam of umbrella: ‘Umbrella protects from rain, wind and sun and gives fame. Hence may bhutas give me comfort with this danam.’ In danam of hand - fan: ‘Fan has Vayu as Devata and gives comfort during summer. Hence always remove my sins.’ In danam of fruit: ‘Fruit always gives the desired fruit for men. Hence remove my sins. May my sons and grandsons grow.’ In danam of buffalo in Brahmanda Purana: ‘By giving buffalo, with calf, with milk, of good quality, decorated with red flowers and cloth to a peaceful brahmana, one will overcome death. The buffalo of the form of timely death with red coloured jewels should be given in danam in tail region. Please remove my sins by this danam made as per this rule.’ In danam of vessel containing til, in Padma Purana: ‘By giving copper vessel full of til and with gold to a brahmana, one will be glorified in Brahmaloka. O Deva Deva! O Jagannatha! O giver of desired fruit! I am giving this vessel full of til. In your presence may I be changeless.’’
2. Ten danas - Cow, land, til, gold, ghee, cloth, foodgrain, jaggery, silver, salt – these ten are called ‘dasa danas’. The mantras for them are: ‘All fourteen worlds are present in cow’s body. Hence with the dana of this cow give me peace.’ 1. ‘This earth is the repository of all crops, brought out from Patala by Varahamurthy and giver of limitless foodgrains. Please give me peace with this danam.’ 2.’The tils born of Vishnu’s body remove sins always. O Kesava! Destroy my unbearable sins by this tiladana. 3. Gold, born of Brahma and Agni’s seed, gives fruit of immeasurable punya.’ 4. ‘Ghee is born of Kamadhenu, present in all yagas and food for Devas. Hence please give me peace.’ 5.’Cloth protects from cold, wind and heat and guards shame and is a decoration for the body. Hence please give me peace.’ 6. ‘Foodgrain gets the giver punya in this and next worlds and enables retention of life of beings. Hence please give me peace.’ 7.’The juice of sugarcane is the sweetest. O jaggery! Give me always high wealth.’ 8. ‘Silver born of the eyes of Siva is pleasing to Pitrus, Vishnu and Siva. Hence please give me peace.’ 9.’Salt is the first of tastes, best and it increases strength and created by Brahma himself. Hence please give me peace.’
3. Yagnavalkya tells about the form of material suitable for danam - Except for wife and son, remaining wealth may be given in danam without offence to family. When descendant is there, all wealth should not be given in danam. Danam promised to one should not be given to others.
4. Brihaspati - One should give in danam material remaining after one’s need of food and cloth. Giving in violation of this rule will not get its fruit.
5. Sankha and Likhita tell about the place and time for danam - During twilight hours, food, sexual union, sleep, Vedic study, danam and accepting danam should not be done. Danam given in holy places like Kurukshetra, Gaya, Amarakantak etc. is imperishable.
6. Vyasa - Dana given in times like Ayana, Vishuvam, solar eclipse, solar eclipse, sankramanam (sun changing rasi) is undecaying. Danam given in holy places like Prayag, sacred areas, temples and banks of rivers is imperishable.
7. Samvartha - Dana given in times like Ayana, Vishuvam, Vyatipatam, ‘dinakshayam’, solar and lunar eclipse is undecaying. Amavasya, dvadasi and sankranti are creditable times; Sunday also. In these times bath, japa, homa, giving food to brahmanas, fast and danam are all purifying.
8. Danam given on day of Purnima associated with the star of that month is ten times more fruitful. Sraadham etc. performed on Yugadi and Manvadi days is also similar in value.
9. Yagnavalkya - ‘Danam in Amavasya is 100 times more fruitful, that in evening is 1000 times, that in Viahuvam is one lakh times and that in Vyatipatams is limitless.’
10. Bharadvaja - ‘Danam in Vyatipatham and Vaidhruti will give imperishable fruit. If on oneday two tithis end, that day is called ‘dinakshayam’. Danam, japa, homa and bath in that time will give specially good fruit.
11. Sumantu - If one gives cooked food to vanaprastha, tambulam to brahmachari and gold to sanyasi, he will go to naraka. Cow, cloth, bed, girl - these should not be given as one intending for many; if given the giver will not get the fruit of danam.
12. Yama - By not giving as promised and taking away what was given, all punya earned from birth will be destroyed. One who tempts, but does not give; one who stops the giver; and one who boasts of what he has given, share great sin. If one month lapses after determining to give, but failing to give, then it should be increased by 100 times. Upto one year, it should be added 100 times per month.
13. Narada - In case of brahmana, the planned danam should be given immediately. In case of delay by one day, the danam should be increased twice; if 3 days, 6 times; if 10 days, 16 times; if one month, 100 times; if one year, 1000 times. There is no expiation beyond one year; the giver will go to hell. The dana material intended for a brahmana should be given to his descendant if he is not available; otherwise his relative; otherwise to person of same caste; otherwise to his disciple. If that is also not possible the material should be dropped in water.
14. Aapasthambha - ‘Danas should be given in holy places, on auspicious occasions, at the close of Prayaschittas like kruchra, and to a suitable recipient.
15. Valmiki - ‘Even by flying in the sky, going into Patala and roaming all over the earth, one cannot get what he has not given in previous births. In swarga also, he gets what he had given before. He enjoys what was given earlier. In this world also, he enjoys only what he had given before. There is nothing like getting what was not given earlier.
16. The words of Aapasthambha, ‘giving son in danam and selling him is prohibited’; of Yagnavalkya, ‘except for sons, rest can be given in danam’ apply to the eldest son or only son. This is because Manu and others have included among 12 types of sons, the ‘son received as gift or bought’ and Smriti says, ‘except for son received as gift or born to oneself, others should not be accepted in Kali yuga’. Vasishtha also - ‘The eldest son should not be given away, nor accepted; same with only son. He is for extending the lineage. Wife should not give away or accept son without permission of husband. One who accepts son should invite relatives, inform the king, do homam with vyahritis; he should accept as son only a near - relative, close at hand.
17. In Bahuvruchabrahmanam, in the story of Sunassepa, it is stated that the eldest son should not be given away.