It’s been centuries since our grandmothers and their grandmothers have been telling us a famous proverb “Aayi Teej, Bakher Gayi Beej”, which translates to “The festival of Teej sows the seeds of wheat as well as the festivals.”
Hariyali Teej or Teej is a famous festival in the North India especially for the Haryana and Punjab which are considered as the wheat basket of India. There, the farmers work very hard and then get the result of their blood and sweat when they see the pearls of the grain in the field.
The festival of Teej comes in the monsoon season, in the month of July-August when the sky is overcast with clouds and there is torrents of rains. It falls on the third day of bright fortnight of the month of Shravan i.e. Advancing Monsoon.
The people exchange the highly sweet dishes made of flour like Ghevar and Faini (Firni) as gifts and eat them a lot in the season. This sharing is considered to be auspicious and blesses the family with the blessings of health and happiness.
As per ayurveda, the months of Shravan and Bhadrapada i.e. July-August-September are predominated with Vata and Pitta respectively. This causes dryness and acidity in the whole body, resulting in restlessness and mood swings.
The highly sweet and ghee laden Ghevar and Firni provide relief from the acidic and moist environment. They have Vata and Pitta calming properties due to ghee and sweet juice. Thus, they have a calming effect on mind as well as the body..
Whenever we are to leave for an auspicious work or a shubh karya or whenever we have to leave for an exam, job interview or any test, we will always find our mothers standing at the threshold of the house with a bowl full of sweet curd and a spoon in her hand, the spoon being scooped with curd and in the position to be put into our mouth as soon as we reach to go out.
This tradition has been a consistent practice amongst Indian mothers and grandmothers who eagerly wait for their child to come at the doorstep and leave for the shubh karya or the exam.
As per shastras, curd and sweet things are considered to be mangalkaari or auspicious. The presence of sweet things is considered customary on the day of festivals so as to invoke an all day auspiciousness in the house.
Curd is formed from the milk which is said to be an elixir for life. The curd is enriched with the properties of the milk.
As per the ayurvedic literature, Curd is considered to be cool and nutritive in nature. It has a calming effect on the digestive system. It cleanses the stomach and aids the memory to be in the mode of attention and serenity.
The sugar, as well being sweet and nutritive has a high energy output. On the day of an auspicious work, the mind is very much preoccupied and tensed as well. This creates pitta in the body which is not conducive and creates body heat and troubles in the digestive system. The tension and anxiety for the exam creates a sort of discomfort in the stomach as well as the mood.
Therefore, in order to relax the whole body, the custom of curd and sugar heaps the best benefit.
Kadhi or curry is one of the most popular savoury preparations of North Indian Cuisine whereby people enjoy it a lot. Pouring dollops of Kadhi over hot streaming rice and enjoying the same again and again till the belly is full is worth remembering.
Kadhi is a preparation in which sour buttermilk is boiled with sifted gram flour (Besan) and some spices like methidana, zeera, dhania, turmeric, salt and pepper. After that, as per individuals’ choice and flavour, some pakodas or boondi are added to the same and then, tempering is done using ghee and red chilly.
Kadhi-Chawal is an all time favourite preparation for the North Indians and there are many versions of Kadhi available in various cuisines of India, but we are forbidden to enjoy this delicacy in the month of Saawan or Shravan (July-August)
In the month of Saawan, the sky is overcasted with clouds and there is lot of rain. This makes the atmosphere sluggish and hampers our digestion. The quality of drinking water degrades down and further slows down digestion. In the same line, lack of immunity becomes prominent due to the same water problem.
Kadhi, despite being delicious, is cool in nature and hence, hard to digest as it contains Besan. And the buttermilk is coming from the milk which is given by cows which are grazing on fresh new grasses of the rainy season which are already contaminated and are forbidden for humans to eat. In the month of Shravan, humans are not supposed to eat green leafy vegetables.
Hence, our grandparents forbid us to eat kadhi, just for our own benefit of health. Poor digestive system cannot digest kadhi and hence, they forbade us.
Most of us find it irresistible to cuddle a small baby with his eyes smeared with kajal. Somehow or the other, our hands extend automatically to the face of the child and we end up cuddling the baby. But, it has been a practice of years by out grandparents to apply kajal on the night of diwali to everyone’s eyes, be it a baby or the grandparents themselves.
As per the shastras, Diwali night is considered to be the night of black magic as well as Devi Lakshmi. All the shaktis wander in the night time of Diwali which can be caught by the person who wants them and to hurt a person from whom they are sent forward.
The kajal, being emenating from the wick of a sanctified lamp is said to protect the person, especially the eyes which cause “Buri Nazar” to affect the individual.
There is a cutom of lighting a great earthen lamp on the night of diwali which burns the whole night and people pile up some earthern lamp on the top of the wick to collect the kajal. This kajal is used by the grandparents to apply in everyone’s eyes.
On the night of Diwali, there is high level of pollution as well as the small insects which fly to the light, the glow worms and the small insects which have a short span of lifetime, practically the night only. They die in the morning. This creates problems in the eyes of the people. And due to the cold and dry winds, the eyes start to pain a lot and lacrimate a lot. This excessive tears cause burning sensation in the eyes, itching and scratching.
The kajal or collyrium is cool in nature. As per Ayurvedic sciences, applying kajal keeps the eyes fit and protect it from cold and other seasonal factors which effect the longevity of the eyes.
Whenever we hear about hawan or homa, the picture of a fire emitting smoke all around comes in our mind, but in a reverential manner since it is meant for deity. We have seen or heard numerous times that by doing hawan, one invites peace to his house.
As stated by the lord in Bhagwad Gita (Chapter 5 Verse 29)-
gyatva mam shantim rchchhati||
The sages, knowing Me as the ultimate purpose of all sacrifices and austerities, the Supreme Lord of all planets and demigods and the benefactor and well-wisher of all living entities, attain peace from the pangs of material miseries.
Since the supreme personality of godhead Sri Krishna is the ultimate benefactor of all hawans, he provides the person who is doing yagya and the person for whom yagya is done both with peace and tranquility.
Homa or Hawan or Yagya, as people call it in India is a vedic tradition which is coming down or the last billions and trillions of yugas. The famous yagyas which are mentioned in the Vedic literature are Ashwamedha Yagya of Maharaj Dashratha, Rajsuya Yagya of Maharaj Yudhishthir etc.
Doing Yagya was yuga dharma (Supreme prerogative and duty) of Treta yuga and people used to see the lord being satisfied by that when he used to appear in the yagya kund.
What is hawan or homa?
Yagya comprises of igniting a holy fire using pure wood and pure cow ghee and cow dung cakes and with the chanting of mantras, the hawish is poured into the fire with the word “Swaha!”. The hawish comprises of Indian Cow Ghee and mixture of Herbs called Hawan Samagri along with some other pure materials.
- Seeing the Hawan with scientific paradigm, the ancient sages used to say that by doing yagya, Sattva gun increases which is symbolized by cleanliness, peace and purity.
- The cow ghee and cow dung cake react to release tonnes of oxygen ad other gases which make the atmosphere pure.
- The small quantities of sulpher and nitrogen oxides get rid of harmful bacteria and their inhalation causes lacrimation, which relieves the eyes of all impurities and cough which arises clears the nasal and respiratory passage.
- All the harmful microbes and pathogens are cleared due to the smoke emitted by burning of herbs which acts as a natural detoxifier.
- The natural herbal smoke purifies the mind as well as the body.
- The ash which is remaining from the Hawan kund is asked to put into plants which acts as a very good fertilizer.
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For thousands of years, Astrology has been used to know one’s future or to act as a guiding post while making important life changing decisions. The classical texts of Astrology like Brihat Parashar Hora Shastra which is regarded as the Bible of Indian Astrology and on which all subsequent works of Indian Astrology are based was written thousands of years ago by sage Parashar. Its oldest printed version is a composite work of 71 chapters, in which the first part (chapters 1-51) dates to the 7th and early 8th centuries, and the second part (chapters 52-71) dates to the latter part of the 8th century.
All the classical texts of Indian Astrology describe the 3rd, 6th and 11th houses in a horoscope (also known as the “trishadaya” houses ) as the “evil houses” in a horoscope.
Human society all over the world has evolved and changed in the thousands of years since the Classics on Indian Astrology were written. It thus becomes clearly evident that if an Astrologer in today’s age takes the literal meaning of what is written in the classical texts and applies it without using his own common sense in attempting to make predictions today, the predictions will not only be totally wrong, but could cause huge financial, mental and emotional losses for his client. Recently, some incidents have taken place where Astrologers have advised clients based on the literal meaning in classical texts as interpreted by the Astrologer and where the client has sued the Astrologer in a Court of Law, or in some cases filed a Police complaint against the Astrologer for malpractice and cheating due to losses suffered by following the Astrologer’s advice.
We will now see why a majority of Astrologers fail to predict anything correctly in the modern age which is due to the evolution of human society and also due to a failure on the part of the Astrologer who has misinterpreted the classical texts while at the same time failing to keep up with this evolution of human society.
For example the classical texts all say that the Mahadashas (MD’s) and the Antardashas (AD’s) of the Trikone lords (houses 1, 5 and 9 are the Trikone houses in a horoscope) are very auspicious for a person and “Yogakarak’’and that the MD’s and AD’s of Trikone lords will make him very happy, give him very good health and will fulfil all his desires. Now, let us dissect this interpretation and apply it in today’s context. The MD of the 1st house lord will give a person good health, strength, mental happiness and a good character. The MD of the 5th house lord will make a person intelligent, will lead to love affairs and will also give him/her happiness from children if married. It might also improve luck to an extent as the 5th house is the “secondary house of luck” as it is the 9th house counted from the house of luck which is the 9th house. The MD of the 9th house lord will make a person lucky, will make him religious and make him go on pilgrimages and improve his relations with his father.
We have seen above what the MD’s of the Trikone lords have to offer. Then what about materialistic success, money and power which everyone craves for in today’s world ?
They are nowhere to be found in the trikones it seems. And therein lies the answer why most Astrologers fail to understand the nuances of making predictions in today’s uncertain times. What today’s society wants viz money, power, materialistic success, name and fame is nowhere to be found in the Trikones. Or to put it the other way round, the needs and aspirations of human society when the Classical texts on Astrology were written and the needs and aspirations of society today are entirely different.
Now, coming back to the question of which houses then bestow money, power, fame and materialistic success which we all crave for today, we get the most unlikeliest of answers – all the things we crave for in today’s modern age are given by the MD of the houses which are termed as “evil houses” or “trishadaya” houses in a horoscope by the classical texts – the 3rd house, the 6th house, and the 11th house. (The AD’s are much shorter in duration compared to MD’s, so actually the benefits given by these houses will accrue during their MD’s). Let us now see how so called “evil houses” can benefit a person so much. The MD of the 3rd house lord gives a person the self confidence and the courage to take on all the challenges of the modern world. Without having self confidence or courage, a person can achieve nothing. The negativity associated with this house in classical texts of Astrology is only because the MD of the 3rd house may make a person overconfident and bombastic. The 6th house according to classical texts is the house of disease, debt, competition and enemies. But the MD of the 6th house lord will give a person the power to defeat or suppress his enemies, to surge ahead in competition and to establish his brand name in the market. Then the only two things negative about the 6th house are disease and debt. And that is because if a person runs after material success, he has to work hard and as a consequence, health suffers. As for debt, businessmen do have to take loans to run their businesses. Without Bank finance, it is impossible to run many businesses today. So in a way, if one does not get a little into debt, one cannot progress or succeed in today’s age. Now, we come to the MD of the 11th house lord. The classical texts say that the 11th house is the house of desire fulfilment. The 11th house is also known as the house of gains or profits as it gives gains or profits. The only reason why classical texts are negative about the 11th house is because the 11th house lord’s MD increases a person’s desires to such an extent that it may become impossible to fulfil those desires. But then why will a person work hard unless he has some desires to fulfil ? This is exactly the very premise on which Capitalism is built – individuals will work hard to earn well for themselves to fulfil their materialistic desires and thereby live happy lives. Economic theory also says that “human wants are unlimited.”
Thus we see how the MD’s of the so called “evil” or “trishadaya” houses can power the growth of an individual in today’s modern age and times. In fact, a person can achieve materialistic success and make lots of money only during the MD’s of the “trishadaya” houses. If a person is not getting MD’s of “trishadaya” houses in his horoscope, he can never achieve material success in the modern world. If the lord of a “trishadaya” house is a natural malefic like Saturn, Mars or Sun, and the malefic planet is also placed in its own house, the results given are simply amazing during its MD. For example in a horoscope with Virgo Ascendant (Virgo lagna) , the 6th house lord will be Saturn and if Saturn is also placed in the 6th house, then during Saturn’s MD, the person will touch great heights by crushing all his opponents and competition, he will conquer illness, he will wipe out all his debts and he will establish a brand name for himself. There are two other houses in a horoscope apart from the “trishadaya” houses which can also give wealth and success in one’s career or profession. One is the second house which is known as the house of wealth. But it is also a “marak” or death inflicting house. Therefore, during the MD of the second house, one will make good money, but one’s health may suffer and even death is possible. The other house which gives progress in career or profession thereby resulting in material success is the 10th house. Good progress in career or profession is seen during the MD of the 10th house lord as well.
Thus we see that the rules of the game have changed for making Astrological predictions in today’s modern and complex times. Traditional Astrologers, if they are out of tune with today’s reality or Astrologers who wrongly interpret the ancient texts while putting theory into practice will be totally at sea in predicting good or bad times for their clients. To deliver accurate and pinpoint predictions in today’s age, an Astrologer has to be a real professional who also keeps himself updated with all the analytical tools of Astrology like the KP system Asktakvarga and Shadbal and he needs to have a finger on the pulse of society as well.
Contributed By: Pranab Saikia
(Jyotish Ratna, Jyotish Bhusan, Jyotish Prabhakar)
Why it is not prescribed to eat sweet and go outside?
Most of us have been perturbed and irked by the sudden jostle from our parents or specifically grandparents when we go outside home after eating something sweet. This sudden irk becomes more prominent during the night time, when they will give some salt in the hands and ask the person to lick it and them go.
The Garuda Purana states about the things to which the ghostly species are attracted to. They are attracted to pleasant as well as putrid smell of any form which works as a food for them. So, whenever someone eats a sweet item of any kind, the pleasant smell of the sweet attracts these species and hence, they become prone to attack by them. The attack may be subtle or gross, depending upon the level of piety of the individual. Pious persons are safeguarded by the destiny as well as supreme lord whereas impious may have to face certain strange happenings.
Salt, on the other hand is a pure substance. In Garuda Purana, the supreme lord Sri Krishna states to Garuda, “Know that sesame seed comes from my sweat and the salt originates from my body”. Salt, being pure and stronger than all other tastes, subdues the effect of sweet and hence, stops the pleasant as well as putrid smell coming from our mouth.
The eating of sweets after brushing one’s teeth increases the chances of tooth decay. And the more time elapses after brushing one’s teeth, the more are the chances. Also, sweet items are the most nutritive in nature. Due to high content of sugar, they act as the best medium for growth of bacteria. Whenever we move out, we are in contact with billions and trillions of them. These bacterial infections can cause variety of oral as well as digestive system diseases.
Salt, being strong and piercing in nature, makes the mouth saline and stops the bacterial growth to a very high extent. It acts an oral cleanser and mouth refresher, completely eliminating the chances of any of such diseases.