Nakshatra pujas

It has been repeatedly mentioned in Skandapurana that Arunachaleswara will always have a soft corner for those who undertake pradakshina, thapas and austerities in Arunachala. There will be no experience of physical and mental aliments wherever the linga of Arunachaleswara is worshipped.

 

Offering during 27 Nakshatras

Arunachaleswara likes different offerings on each day of puja depending upon the ruling star of the day. The precise specification of offerings, however, has a scientific basis. On the day ruled by Krittika (i.e., moon in Krittika), which is an incendiary or fiery constellation in consonance with the Yajur Vedic hymn, “Agnirnahpaatu Krittikaaha….” suggestive of light and fire, the offering of lamps (deepams) is suggested. It is therefore in the fitness of things that we offer just what is ordained as it would greatly increase the significance of the seva. Nakshatras or stars function as sensory organs of the Lord.

The following table based on Skanda will serve as a ready reckoner for offerings:-

Sl. No Day ruled by Nakshatra Nature of offering
1 Ashwini Vastram (Cloth)
2 Bharani Abharanam (Jewels)
3 Krittika Deepam (Lamps)
4 Rohini Thaapyam (hot offerings)
5 Mrigasira Srigandham (Sandalpaste)
6 Aridra Harichandanam (Red sandal paste)
7 Punarvasu Kasturi
8 Pushyami Karpuram (Camphor)
9 Aashlesha Kesari (Saffron)
10 Makha Pachakarpuram in water
11 Pubba Thambulam
12 Uttara Dhoopam (Incense)
13 Hasta Kaalaaguru (a scent)
14 Chitta Anulepanam
15 Swati Scents
16 Vishaka Chaamaram (the traditional fans)
17 Anuradha Swetachatram (White umbrella)
18 Jyeshta Go-ghritam (Cow’s ghee)
19 Moola Pearl necklace
20 Purvashada Kireetam (Crown)
21 Uttarashada Navaratnams (9 precious stones)
22 Sravana Bhadraasanam (as peeta)
23 Dhanishta Gold
24 Satabhisha Fine articles
25 Purvabhadra Enjoyable (Bhogya) ones
26 Uttarabhadra Horse
27 Revati Golden chariot

 

The   seva-kartas (devotees who offer) will get special grace from Arunachaleswara by devout adherence to specified offerings.

For heavenly enjoyments and eventual salvation, according to Nandikeswara, there is no greater place of sancity than Arunachala.

The remembrance of Arunachala purifies the mind. Learning about its greatness perfects the ears. Extolling its greatness sanctifies the tongue. Those born in Arunachala are assured of material comforts and final liberation.

Ceremonies (like Shraaddha) performed in Arunachala even for sinners who die outside will get elevation. It is no wonder therefore that Arunachala excels the celebrated 7 kshetras of Ayodhya, Mathura, Maaya, Kashi, Kanchi, Avantika and Dwaraka:

 

“Ayodhyaam Mathuraam Maayaam

Kaasheem Kaancheem Avantikaam

Dwaarakaam cha Arunakshetram

Atishete na samshayaha” (Skaanda)

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