What is Dhanur masam and it’s significance
Namaste friends, how are your doing today? Bhagavan Sri Vishnu blessings to you and your family!
Hindu Sanatana Dharma has always been right. If we follow the Hindu Sanatana Dharma as prescribed as per our grantas (Divine books), we will definitely earn both material and spiritual benefits for both long and short term.
Each of the masam (month) of Hindu calendar is auspicious and is dedicated to perform one or more particular ceremonies, rituals, customs, practices, etc.
Hindu Sanatana Dharma is the most diversified structure of thought marked by various divine philosophies and shared methodology, rituals, pilgrimage sites, concepts, cosmological systems, etc.
Also Hindu Sanatana Dharma has the shared textual sources that discuss Vedas, Mahabharata, Ramayana, Puranas, Temple building, Yoga, Yagna, etc.
Most importantly the Hindu Sanatana Dharma include the ‘Chatur Puruṣārthas’ (Four Purusharthas) as given below:
The correct and required goals and / or aims of ‘manushya jaati’ (Human life) are:
1. Dharma (Duties as prescribed in Hindu grantas),
2. Artha (Aim of life / Spiritual development etc),
3. Kama (Expectations / desires) and
4. Moksha / Mukti (Divine liberation). This means freedom from the cycle of deaths and births, that is, going to the most auspicious planet called Vaikuntha.
With these ‘Chatur Purusharthas), there are another two basic spiritual properties which are very important, that is, Karma (The actions performed or intent and its consequences) and Saṃsāra (cycle of deaths and births / reincarnation).
Hindu Sanatana Dharma always suggests the divine eternal duties (Karmas), for e.g., to have honesty through the life, should always avoid injuring other living beings (i.e., practicing ahiṃsā), patience, tolerance, self-control, morality, and sympathy etc.
Hindu Sanatana Dharma divine practices include ceremonies and rituals like doing regular as pooja (worship) and to recite different stotrams as prescribed in Hindu grantas, to do japa, tapa, divine meditation (dhyāna of Bhagavan Sri Vishnu), to per all the festivals every year, and to have consistent pilgrimages through out India.
In Hindu Sanatana Dharma, we mainly find two types of ‘panchangas’ / calendars being followed, that is:
1. Sauramana Panchanga / Solar Calendar and
2. Chandramana Panchanga / Lunar Calendar.
In Sauramana Panchanga / Solar Calendar the months are derived from the names based on the transit of Surya / Sun in a particular zodiac sign
Whereas in Chandramana Panchanga / Lunar Calendar it is based on the Nakshatras / Constellations occurring on the ‘Poornima tithi’ (Full moon day).
The period between two successive Sankramana / Solar transits or the time taken by the Surya / Sun to pass through a zodiac sign is known as a Solar month.
Thus, when Surya / Sun transits into Dhanus Rashi (Sagittarius) that month is respresented as ‘Dhanur Masam’ (Dhanur Month).
This will mark the entry of Surya / Sun into Dhanus rashi and it is called as ‘Dhanus Sankramana’ (Transit of Dhanur Rashi). This generally occurs around the mid of the winter month of December as per Gregorian Calendar.
Dhanur Masam generally occurs in between the two Chandramana / Lunar months called ‘Mārgaśirṣa / Agrahāyaṇa’ and ‘Pushya’.
As per the Gregorian / English Calendar, Dhanur masam generally starts somewhere around on 16th of December and ends on January 13th or 14th on the Bhogi festival day.
It is the ninth month (Mārgaśirṣa / Agrahāyaṇa) of the zodiac starting from ‘Mesha Rashi’ (Aries) and is the last month before the onset of Uttarayana.
Dhanur masam has acquired a distinctive importacne and auspiciousness in Hindu Sanatana Dharma spiritual calendar for devotional activities especially worshiping of Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu.
Lot more importance is given in worshipping Bhagavan Sri Vishnu in Dhanur masam during the early hours before Sunrise known as ‘Arunodaya Kaalam’.
(Arunodaya Kaalam means much before the Sunrise. Aruna is the charioteer of Sri Surya Deva. First he rises in the early morning before his Lord Sri Surya Deva and thus this time is known as Arunodaya Kaalam).
In this month of Dhanur masam, one is expected to discharge ceremonies during the auspicious ‘Brahmi Muhurtam’, that is, approximately two hours before the Sunrise when the stars are still shining in the akasham / sky.
In the Dhanur masam a distinctive divine dish is prepared with Rice and Moong dal mixed in equal proportions is offered to Bhagavan Sri Vishnu as Naivedyam.
What is Huggi Neivedhya:
This divine dish uses Green gram, that is, मूंग दाल / Moong dal or ಹೆಸರು ಬೇಳೆ / Hesaru Bele and rice as the primary ingredients.
What is the proportion of Moong dal and Rice:
Agnya purana states that:
ಮುದ್ಗಂ ತಂಡುಲಮಾನಂ ಸ್ಯಾದ್ಯುತ್ತಮೋತ್ತಮಮುಚ್ಯತೇ |
ಮಧ್ಯಮಂ ತಂಡುಲಾದರ್ಧಂ ತದರ್ಧಮಧಮಂ ಭವೇತ್|
ಮುದ್ಗಂ ತು ದ್ವಿಗುಣಂ ಕೇಚಿತ್ ಪ್ರಶಂಸಂತಿ ಮುನೀಶ್ವರಾ: |
ಯಥಾಬಲಂ ಪ್ರಕುರ್ವೀತ ನ ಹೀಯೇತ್ತಂಡುಲಾರ್ಧತ: |
मुद्गं तंडुलमानं स्याद्युत्तमोत्तममुच्यते ।
मध्यमं तंडुलादर्धं तदर्धमधमं भवेत्।
मुद्गं तु द्विगुणं केचित् प्रशंसंति मुनीश्वरा: ।
यथाबलं प्रकुर्वीत न हीयेत्तंडुलार्धत: ।
mudgaṁ taṇḍulamānaṁ syādyuttamōttamamucyatē |
madhyamaṁ taṇḍulādardhaṁ tadardhamadhamaṁ bhavēt |
mudgaṁ tu dviguṇaṁ kēcit praśansanti munīśvarā: |
yathābalaṁ prakurvīta na hīyēttaṇḍulārdhata: |
Meaning of this shloka:
Hindu Sanatana Dharma shastras rate the most divine naivedyam based on the proportion of Green gram to rice in the mudganna.
The naivedyam is rated as ultimate and supreme if the ratio of green gram and rice is 2:1.
Naivedyam is good if 1:1,
Naivedyam is medium if 1:2 and
Naivedyam is lowest if 1:4 or lower.
In our Puranas it is said that Sri Indra Deva’s consort Sri Shachi Devi, offered such ultimate and supreme mudganna mixed with ginger to Bhagavan Sri Vishnu and got rid of her all troubles.
What are the advantages of Huggi (Mudganna) neivedyam:
दध्यार्दकं च मुद्गान्नं दद्याच्चैलागुडोज्ज्वलम् ।
सुसुखोष्णं सकंदं च विष्णवे य: समर्पयेत् ।
दृष्ट्वा तच्चुभमुद्गान्नं संतुष्टो भक्तवत्सल: ।
ददाति सकलान् भोगान् मोक्षं च जगदीश्वर: ।
ದಧ್ಯಾರ್ದಕಂ ಚ ಮುದ್ಗಾನ್ನಂ ದದ್ಯಾಚ್ಚೈಲಾಗುಡೋಜ್ಜ್ವಲಮ್ |
ಸುಸುಖೋಷ್ಣಂ ಸಕಂದಂ ಚ ವಿಷ್ಣವೇ ಯ: ಸಮರ್ಪಯೇತ್ |
ದೃಷ್ಟ್ವಾ ತಚ್ಚುಭಮುದ್ಗಾನ್ನಂ ಸಂತುಷ್ಟೋ ಭಕ್ತವತ್ಸಲ: |
ದದಾತಿ ಸಕಲಾನ್ ಭೋಗಾನ್ ಮೋಕ್ಷಂ ಚ ಜಗದೀಶ್ವರ: |
dadhyārdakaṁ ca mudgānnaṁ dadyāccailāguḍōjjvalam |
susukhōṣṇaṁ sakandaṁ ca viṣṇavē ya: Samarpayēt |
dr̥ṣṭvā taccubhamudgānnaṁ santuṣṭō bhaktavatsala: |
dadāti sakalān bhōgān mōkṣaṁ ca jagadīśvara: |
Meaning of this shloka:
If we offer Mudganna as naivedyam to Bhagavan Sri Vishnu in the right proportion, Bhagavan Sri Vishnu will definitely be pleased and will fulfill all our requirements he will finally give Moksha too.
Very high significance is given to Dhanur masam in ‘Vaishnava Sampradayam’ and all the Bhagavan Sri Vishnu linked devalayas / temples perform sacred rituals and poojas early in the morning during this masam / month.
We can easily find temples offering ‘Sweet Pongal, Khara Pongal, and Puliyogare as Naivedya to Bhagavan Sri Vishnu, and distributing the same as divine prasadam to all his devotees during Dhanur masam.
There is also a great health related significances with these divine food items during Dhanur masam.
At Tirupati, the divine abode of Bhagavan Sri Venkateshwara, we find the priests reciting ‘Tiruppavai’, that is, a divine song composed by ‘Sri Godadevi’ (Also called as Andal) who was an ardent devotee of Bhagavan Sri Krishna, instead of the usual ‘Suprabhatham’ in the early morning.
At Tirumala temple Bhagavan Sri Venkateshwara is worshiped daily with Bilva leaves (Bael / Bilva Patra) during Dhanur masam.
It is highly meritorious to chant the most divine Purusha Suktam, Sri Vishnu Sahasra Nama Stotram, Sri Vishnu Suktam and Narayana Upanishad during this divine period of Dhanur masam.
Worshiping Sri Maha Lakshmi along with Bhagavan Sri Vishnu is also prescribed during Dhanur masam. If we worship only Sri Lakshmi Devi and don’t worship Bhagavan Sri Vishnu, then it will product opposite effects.
Instead, we should always worship Bhagavan Sri Vishnu first and then Sri Maha Lakshmi Devi as prescribed in the Hindu Sanatana Dharma grantas.
Shukla paksha Ekadashi (either in Mārgaśirṣa / Agrahāyaṇa’ or ‘Pushya masam) associated with Dhanur masam is revered as Vaikuntha Ekadashi or Mukkoti Ekadashi. This is the most divine day to worship Bhagavan Sri Vishnu.
Next day is known as Mukkoti Dwadashi.
Vyatipata yoga during Dhanur masam (Dhanur-Vyatipata Yoga) is given high importance and it is believed that any Pitru karya or charity given in respectful reverence to one’s Pitrus on this auspicious day is considered as highly meritorious and divine.
As prescribed in ‘Sri Venkatachala Mahatmya’, it is said that, taking bath in Sri Swamy Pushkarini Teertham at Tirumala on the day of Shukla Paksha Dwadashi tithi (That is on Mukkoti Dwadashi) in the month of Dhanur masam during ‘Arunodaya kalam’ is considered as highly divine.
On this Shukla Shukla Paksha Dwadashi tithi / day it is said that, more than three crores of sacred teerthas in the entire Bhulokam will enter into this Sri Swamy Pushkarini.
Taking the divine bath on this day in Swami Pushkarini is observed as highly meritorious and this is equivalent to taking bath in all the three crores of sacred teerthas.
It is revered as Sri Swamy Pushkarini Teertham Koti day in the almanac of Tirupati Tirumala Devalaya / temple.
The supremacy, sacredness and spirituality attached to the Dhanur masam, auspicious functions like vivaha / marriage, Gruha Pravesam etc. should be 100% avoided during this month.
This is because to give more to give more focus to the auspicious worship, rather than wordly activities.
During Dhanur masam, why only Arunodaya kalam is prescribed for worshiping Bhagavan Sri Vishnu?
As per the theory of Hindu Sanatana Dharma time element, it is said that, one day (Day + Night) for Devatas / Demigods is same and equal to one human year (365 days).
This whole one year of 365 days includes 6 months of Uttarayana and 6 months of Dakshinayana.
That means Uttarayana is the day time for Devatas / Demigods and Dakshinayana is the night time for Devatas / Demigods.
Thus, accordingly one human month (30 days + 30 nights) is equal to two hours for Devatas / Demigods as per their planets timings.
The period of Dhanur masam falling at the fag end of Dakshinayana, shows the last time frame of the night time for Devatas, that is Arunodaya time when they worship Bhagavan Sri Vishnu.
For this reason, we humans also need to worship Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu at a time that coincides with the Arunodaya Kaalam for Devatas / Demigods.
This coincidentally matches with the Dhanur masam timings.
Thus, this is the auspicious period and it is known as Arunodaya kalam or Brahmi Muhurtam.
Any pooja / worship conducted during Arunodaya kalam is said to be of highest divinity and this yields meritorious results for us.
It is said in our Hindu Sanatana Dharma Shastras that doing pooja / worshiping Bhagavan Sri Maha Vishnu at meritorious and divine period of Dhanur masam, the dearest month for Bhagavan Sri Vishnu even for a single day is equivalent to worshiping the Bhagavan Sri Vishnu for 1000 years during other days.
In Hindu Sanatana Dharma shastras for everything a specific time frame and measurement is set and prescribed according to the theory of time element.
Hindu Sanatana Dharma shatras specifies the unique significance given to the particular masam / month, dina / day, tithi, Nakshatram etc.
Thus and therefore performing correct Karmas at the right time and seeking divine blessings that yields more better and better results is intelligence.
Different phalas / fruits if the pooja done during dhanurmasa
This below shloka is as given in Agneya Purana. It states that:
मुख्यारुणोदये पूजा मध्यमा लुप्ततारका ।
अधमा सूर्यसहिता मध्याह्ने निष्फला भवेत् ।
ಮುಖ್ಯಾರುಣೋದಯೇ ಪೂಜಾ ಮಧ್ಯಮಾ ಲುಪ್ತತಾರಕಾ |
ಅಧಮಾ ಸೂರ್ಯಸಹಿತಾ ಮಧ್ಯಾಹ್ನೇ ನಿಷ್ಫಲಾ ಭವೇತ್ |
mukhyāruṇōdayē pūjā madhyamā luptatārakā |
adhamā sūryasahitā madhyāhnē niṣphalā bhavēt |
Meaning of this shloka:
One has to complete the pooja / worship when the stars are still twinkling in the sky, that is, during the Arunodaya kalam. This is the best time to do pooja / worship.
Whereas if the pooja / worship that is done after the stars have disappeared, but before sunrise, it is considered somewhere as medium,
Also, similarly the pooja / worship that is completed after sunrise is inferior.
And if the pooja / worship done in the afternoon is realistically useless.
We have to do the pooja / worship and naivedyam at least 96 minutes before sunrise.
Consequences of not doing the pooja / worship in time during dhanurmasa
As per Agneya Purana:
यस्तु दारिद्र्यबुद्द्या मुद्गान्नं न निवेदयेत् ।
विष्णवे कार्मुके प्रात: सप्तजन्मसु निर्धन: ॥
ಯಸ್ತು ದಾರಿದ್ರ್ಯಬುದ್ದ್ಯಾ ಮುದ್ಗಾನ್ನಂ ನ ನಿವೇದಯೇತ್ |
ವಿಷ್ಣವೇ ಕಾರ್ಮುಕೇ ಪ್ರಾತ: ಸಪ್ತಜನ್ಮಸು ನಿರ್ಧನ: ||
yastu dāridryabuddyā mudgānnaṁ na nivēdayēt |
viṣṇavē kārmukē prāta: Saptajanmasu nirdhana: ||
Meaning of this shloka:
We who who does not perform the pooja / worship of Bhagavan Sri Vishnu in time (As said above), that is, before Sunrise will get dāridrya (indigence / extreme poverty) during his / her next seven lives, as well he / she will suffer from diseases and his mental strength will be highly limited.
Dos and Don’ts during the Dhanur Masam
1. Doing pooja / worshipping Bhagavan Sri Vishnu, Sri Maha Lakshmi Devi and other Devatas / Demigods as per the hierarchy / taratamya.
2. To recite ‘Sri Vishnu Sahasra Nama Stotram’ + Purusha Suktam.
3. Offering Naivedya to Bhagavan Sri Vishnu as prescribed in the shastras.
4. To observe fast on Vaikuntha Ekadashi day.
5. to perform Pitru Karyas on the day of Dhanur Vyatipata yoga
6. To avoid performing all the auspicious functions like marriage, gruha pravesham, etc. during the Dhanur masam.
7. Performing pooja rituals during Arunodaya kalam, that is, two hours before Sunrise.
Advantages of performing pooja / worship in time during Dhanur masam
कोदंडस्थे सवितरि प्रत्यूष: पूजनाद्धरे: ।
सहस्राब्धार्चनफलं दिनेनैकेन लभ्यते ॥
ಕೋದಂಡಸ್ಥೇ ಸವಿತರಿ ಪ್ರತ್ಯೂಷ: ಪೂಜನಾದ್ಧರೇ: |
ಸಹಸ್ರಾಬ್ಧಾರ್ಚನಫಲಂ ದಿನೇನೈಕೇನ ಲಭ್ಯತೇ ||
kōdaṇḍasthē savitari pratyūṣa: pūjanād’dharē: |
sahasrābdhārcanaphalaṁ dinēnaikēna labhyatē ||
Meaning of this shloka:
Someone who is doing the pooja / worship at least for one day in the early morning during Dhanur masam, will get the pooja’s good deeds which will be equal to 1000 years.
(We should note that, just doing the pooja / worship for one is enough. It’s not like that. We need to do the pooja / worship throughout the masam / month with fail.)
(Hindu Sanatana Dharma doesn’t restricts us to perform the pooja / worship for just a single day. If and only if we do the pooja / worship for the full month of Dhanur masam, we will get the full benefits / punyam.)
(A person who is performing the pooja / worship will get dhana (wealth), dhanya (food grains), and in all his births he will be born as a true Vaishnava.)
Should we have to eat the food before sunrise
It’s not at all like that. He / she who is performing the pooja / worship and someone who is not performing the pooja / worship should never ever eat food before sunrise.
(Hindu Sanatana Dharma never allows someone to eat during the night time (probably after 10 p.m. and before Sunrise.)
(Even someone who is performing the Ekadashi fasting, has to eat food / drink water on Dwadashi after performing the pooja / worship after the Sunrise.)
About Shraaddha during Dhanur masam
If someone have died during the Dhanur masam, all the pitru karyas coming in this period must be done before Sunrise. That person will get the punyam (good deeds) for having done the shraaddha only if he does it before Sunrise and not after Sunrise.
Why Dhanur masam is also termed as Shoonya masam
This whole masam / month is 100% reserved for Bhagavan Sri Vishnu.
One has to perform the pooja / worship of Sri Lakshmi Devi along with Bhagavan Sri Vishnu.
Thus to perform the pooja / worship of Bhagavan Sri Vishnu, we have to 100% avoid other ‘Shubha karyas’ (Divine good works) in thid month.
This month is not favorable for performing any other good works like vivaham (marriage), upanayanam, gruha pravesham etc.
If someone does these Shubha karyas, that person not get the punyam (good deeds) of Kanya daana in marriage, and similarly no phala will be gained if someone does upanayanam or any other Shubha karyas.
Thus, one must not do any such Shubha karyas in this month.
(We should always remember that, as this masam / month is exclusively only to perfomr pooja of Bhagavan Sri Vishnu and thus for this reason, this masam / month is called as blank month or shoonya maasam.)
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