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Significance of Panchamrit or Panchamrutham

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Panchamrit or Panchamrutham is a combination of five ingredients, namely, Milk, Curd, Honey, Jaggery, and Ghee), typically offered to God during Hindu rituals. The word Panchamrita is derived from two words – ‘Pancha’ means five, and ‘Amrita’ is a mythical beverage of immortality. Panchamrit is a very essential ingredient in most of the Hindu Poojas and considered as holy and sacred. Once it is offered to God during a Pooja, it is then distributed amongst the devotees as a Prasad.

According to Ayurvedic science, the five ingredients of Panchamrit offer a lot of health benefits. Here are some of the important Ayurvedic Panchamrit Health Benefits.

  1. Nourishes the skin and keeps it Healthy and Glowing
  2. Keeps Hair Healthy
  3. Boosts Immunity
  4. Improves Physical Strength
  5. Vitalizes the Brain Functions
  6. Balances Pitta Dosha
  7. Improves Sexual Potency in Males
  8. Good to have During Pregnancy

Mythological Symbolic significance of the Five Ingredients Used in Panchamrit.

Milk is a symbol of holiness and purity

According to Ayurveda, the cow’s milk used to make Panchamrit offers a cooling effect on the body and the mind. It improves Ojas i.e. a factor responsible for immunity. Regular consumption of cow milk rejuvenates body inside out by nourishing the tissues. It also helps provides strength.

Curd / Yogurt is a symbol of prosperity and better living

It is said that curd also offers a cooling effect on the body, which improves the digestive health and balances Vata Dosha. As per Ayurveda, yogurt is the only ‘fermented’ food recognized as Sattvic.

Honey is a symbol of sweet speech and unity since it is prepared by bees together

According to Ayurveda, honey is beneficial for those having a weak digestive system. It also enhances skin tone and its softness. It is is an easily digestible food and gets dissolved directly into the bloodstream when consumed. This is why many ayurvedic medicines are advised to be taken with honey.

Jaggery is a symbol of sweetness and bliss

Jaggery has a cooling effect on the body and many other health benefits. It is a good chemical free substitute for the regular refined sugar we use at home.

Ghee is a symbol of victory and knowledge

Ayurveda says consumption of Ghee offers a wide range of benefits, including clarity of mind, nutrition, and good digestion.

According to the science of Ayurveda, when these five ingredients are combined together, they improve and enhance the Gunas or the good qualities of each other.

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Sonali Patnaik is majorly into secondary research and report writing. She is an avid reader and reads a variety of novels, a music lover and a movie buff. She also loves to travel and fond of cooking experiments. She expresses her views on various topics and does so through her well-researched articles.



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Benefits of chanting Mahamrityunjaya Mantra regularly!

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Mahamrityunjaya Mantra is the impressive mantra of Lord Shiva. Its effects and powers are described in many Puranas. According to Shivpuran, recitation of this mantra eliminates all obstacles and troubles of a person. Reciting this mantra daily with the rosary of Rudraksha removes the fear of premature death (untimely death).

These defects are destroyed by Mahamrityunjaya.

The recitation of Mahamrityunjaya Mantra eliminates Manglik Dosha, Nadi Dosha, Kalasarp Dosh, Bhoot-Phantha Dosha, Disease, Nightmare, Fetus, Santanbadha, and many defects.

The recitation of Mahamrityujay Mantra provides auspicious results as follows

Longevity (long life) –

Any person who wishes to attain a long life should regularly chant the Mahamrityujaya Mantra. Due to the effect of this mantra, the fear of premature death of man ends. This mantra is very dear to Lord Shiva, the person chanting it gets a long life.

Receipt of Property –

Anyone who wishes to get wealth should recite the Mahamrityunjaya Mantra. Lord Shiva is always happy with the recitation of this mantra and the man never lacks money.

Health Recovery –

This mantra not only makes man fearless but also destroys his diseases. Lord Shiva is also called the God of Death. By chanting this mantra, diseases are destroyed and a human being becomes healthy.

Achievement of Yash (honor) –

By chanting this mantra, man attains a high position in society. A person seeking respect should chant the Mahamrityujaya mantra daily.

Blessed with children –

By chanting the Mahamrityujaya Mantra, Lord Shiva’s grace always remains and every wish is fulfilled. It is believed that regular recitation of the holy mantra helps in conceiving.

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Holy Scriptures

DOs and DON’Ts while reciting Hanuman Chaalisa!

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Lord Hanuman, who is strict bachelor or Baal Brahmachaari and a great devotee of Lord Shri Ramachandra, is considered as immortal or Chiranjeevi as well as Omnipresent. Some of his devotees call him Bajarangbali, while some call him Sankatmochan and believe that he is present at all the places, where there is bhajan of lord Sri ram is going on. People also consider that the Lord lives in the Himalayas.

People worship Lord Hanuman in order to overcome pain. It is also believed that deeds such as death and low death end with reading of Hanuman Chaalisa. Authored by the great poet Tulsidas, Hanuman Chaalisa is a 40 ritual hymn which is recited by all Hanuman devotees on earth. However, there are few rules to be followed while worshiping the Lord Hanuman or reciting Hanuman Chaalisa.

Rules to be followed –

  1. One can start chanting Hanuman Chaalisa on any day. However, it provides the best results when recited in Nishkam Bhaav, which means without expecting any results. Else, the best day to start is on Shukla Paksha
  2. It is advisable to chant the Hanuman Chaalisa in Brahma Muhurt (approximately one and a half hours before sunrise). This is because as per Hindu scriptures, any mantra or sloka if chanted in secrecy is most effective and provides quick results.
  3. If a devotee recites the Hanuman Chaalisa with an expectation of some result then he must face the North direction, while a devotee chanting the Chaalisa with Nishkam Bhaav should face the east direction.
  4. The devotee must sit on a kush aasan or maybe on a velvet mat while chanting the holy hymn.
  5. One should keep a Hanuman image or photo or idol in front of him while chanting the Hanuman
  6. The devotee should light some incense sticks and diyas using sesame oil in front of the Lord’s photo or idol.
  7. The devotee should maintain a gyaan mudra for better concentration and quicker results.
  8. One must read or recite each and every verse with correct pronunciation.
  9. At the end of the hymn chanting, seek forgiveness from Lord Hanuman for your mistakes. Lord is kind, and he will surely ignore your faults.

Things you must not do while chanting Hanuman Chaalisa regularly –

  1. Don’t sit directly on the ground (i.e. Not sitting on a mat or aasana) while reciting Hanuman Chaalisa. It is believed that the chant or the recitation of the mantra goes in vain if you do so.
  2. Make sure that the Lord’s idol placed in front of you, while chanting the holy hymn must not touch the ground.
  3. Do not eat non-vegetarian food on Saturdays and Tuesdays.
  4. Avoid alcohol on Tuesday and Saturday.
  5. Stay away from the other women.
  6. Don’t follow the path of dishonesty or disloyalty.
  7. Never live with people using bad associates.

Jai Shri Raam! Jai Bajarang Bali!

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Holy Scriptures

Prophecies in Hindu Scriptures that have come true!

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Towards the last section of Shrimad Bhagavata Gita, one of the ancient scriptures in Hinduism, there is a list of prophecies about the dark secret of the present time which is considered to be the Kali Yuga in Vedic science. Here are some predictions, inscribed by Maharishi Veda Vyāsa, 5,000 years ago which came to be true.

Prophecy 1

sri-suka uvaca

tatas canu-dinam dharmah

satyam saucam ksama daya

kalena balina rajan

nanksyaty ayur balam

– Srimad Bhagavatam 12.2.1

Religion, truthfulness, cleanliness, tolerance, mercy, duration of life, physical strength, and memory will all diminish day by day because of the powerful influence of the age of Kali.

Prophecy 2

vittam eva kalau nṝṇā

janmācāra-guṇodayaḥ

dharma-nyāya-vyavasthāyāḿ

kāraṇaḿ balam eva hi

– Srimad Bhagavatam 12.2.2

In Kali Yuga, wealth alone will be considered the sign of a man’s good birth, proper behavior, and fine qualities. And law and justice will be applied only on the basis of one’s power.

Prophecy 3

dāmpatye ‘bhirucir hetur

māyaiva vyāvahārike

strītve puḿstve ca hi ratir

vipratve sūtram eva hi

– Srimad Bhagavatam 12.2.3

Men and women will live together merely because of superficial attraction, and success in business will depend on deceit. Womanliness and manliness will be judged according to one’s expertise in sex, and a man will be known as a brahmana just by his wearing a thread.

Prophecy 4

lińgaḿ evāśrama-khyātāv

anyonyāpatti-kāraṇam

avṛttyā nyāya-daurbalyaḿ

pāṇḍitye cāpalaḿ vacaḥ

– Srimad Bhagavatam 12.2.4

A person’s spiritual position will be ascertained merely according to external symbols, and on that same basis, people will change from one spiritual order to the next. A person’s propriety will be seriously questioned if he does not earn a good living. And one who is very clever at juggling words will be considered a learned scholar.

Prophecy 5

anāḍhyataivāsādhutve

sādhutve dambha eva tu

svīkāra eva codvāhe

snānam eva prasādhanam

– Srimad Bhagavatam 12.2.5

A person will be judged unholy if he does not have money, and hypocrisy will be accepted as a virtue. Marriage will be arranged simply by verbal agreement, and a person will think he is fit to appear in public if he has merely taken a bath.

Prophecy 6

dūre vāry-ayanaḿ tīrthaḿ

lāvaṇyaḿ keśa-dhāraṇam

udaraḿ-bharatā svārthaḥ

satyatve dhārṣṭyam eva hi

dākṣyaḿ kuṭumba-bharaṇaḿ

yaśo ‘rthe dharma-sevanam

– Srimad Bhagavatam 12.2.6

A sacred place will be taken to consist of no more than a reservoir of water located at a distance, and beauty will be thought to depend on one’s hairstyle. Filling the belly will become the goal of life, and one who is audacious will be accepted as truthful. He who can maintain a family will be regarded as an expert man, and the principles of religion will be observed only for the sake of reputation.

Prophecy 7

evaḿ prajābhir duṣṭābhir

ākīrṇe kṣiti-maṇḍale

brahma-viṭ-kṣatra-śūdrāṇā

yo balī bhavitā nṛpaḥ

– Srimad Bhagavatam 12.2.7

As the earth thus becomes crowded with a corrupt population, whoever among any of the social classes shows himself to be the strongest will gain political power.

Prophecy 8

śāka-mūlāmiṣa-kṣaudra-

phala-puṣpāṣṭi-bhojanā

anāvṛṣṭyā vinańkṣyanti

durbhikṣa-kara-pīḍitā

– Srimad Bhagavatam 12.2.9

Harassed by famine and excessive taxes, people will resort to eating leaves, roots, flesh, wild honey, fruits, flowers, and seeds. Struck by drought, they will become completely ruined.

Prophecy 9

śīta-vātātapa-prāvṛḍ-

himair anyonyataḥ prajāḥ

kṣut-tṛḍbhyāḿ vyādhibhiś caiva

santapsyante ca cintayā

– Srimad Bhagavatam 12.2.10

The citizens will suffer greatly from cold, wind, heat, rain and snow. They will be further tormented by quarrels, hunger, thirst, disease, and severe anxiety.

Prophecy 10

triḿśad viḿśati varṣāṇi

paramāyuḥ kalau nṛṇām

– Srimad Bhagavatam 12.2.11

The maximum duration of life for human beings in Kali Yuga will become 50 years.

Prophecy 11

na rakshishyanti manujah

sthavirau pitarav api

– Srimad Bhagavatam 12.3.42

Men will no longer protect their elderly parents.

Prophecy 12

kalau kakinike ‘py arthe

vigrihya tyakta-sauhridah

tyakshyanti ca priyan pranan

hanishyanti svakan api

– Srimad Bhagavatam 12.3.41

In Kali-yuga men will develop a hatred for each other even over a few coins. Giving up all friendly relations, they will be ready to lose their own lives and kill even their own relatives.

Prophecy 13

sudrah pratigrahishyanti

tapo-veshopajivinah

dharmam vakshyanty adharma-jna

adhiruhyottamasanam

– Srimad Bhagavatam 12.3.38

Uncultured men will accept charity on behalf of the Lord and will earn their livelihood by making a show of austerity and wearing a mendicant’s dress. Those who know nothing about religion will mount a high seat and presume to speak on religious principles.

Prophecy 14

patim tyakshyanti nirdravyam

bhritya apy akhilottamam

bhrityam vipannam patayah

kaulam gas capayasvinih

– Srimad Bhagavatam 12.3.36

Servants will abandon a master who has lost his wealth, even if that master is a saintly person of exemplary character. Masters will abandon an incapacitated servant, even if that servant has been in the family for generations. Cows will be abandoned or killed when they stop giving milk.

Prophecy 15

dasyutkrishta janapada

vedah pashanda-dushitah

rajanas ca praja-bhakshah

sisnodara-para dvijah

– Srimad Bhagavatam 12.3.32

Cities will be dominated by thieves, the Vedas will be contaminated by speculative interpretations of atheists, political leaders will virtually consume the citizens, and the so-called priests and intellectuals will be devotees of their bellies and genitals.

 

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Holy Scriptures

Significance of Gāyatrī Mantra: Women are debarred from chanting the holy mantra!

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In Hinduism, the Gāyatrī Mantra is a highly valued mantra from the Vedas. However, it was never authored but believed to be added to Rig Veda by the great Sage Brahmarshi Viswamitra. Its recitation (hymn) begins with the sacred sound ‘OM’ followed by the mantra ‘bhūr bhuvaḥ svaḥ’, ending with the same sacred sound of ‘OM’. The significance of Gāyatrī Mantra has been mentioned in many of the holy books such as Bhagavad Gita, Garud Purana, Harivamsa, and Manusmriti. Here are some more facts about the sacred Gāyatrī Mantra.

  1. In Bhagavad Gita, Lord Krishna has said, “I am Gayatri among all mantras.” As per Hindu religious scriptures, Goddess Gāyatrī is the Mother of the Vedas and has omnipresence.
  2. Religiously, one can chant the Gāyatrī Mantra, at three ‘peher’ that is dawn, noon and dusk, since these are considered to be beneficial for spiritual practices. However, there are certain limitations to it. One cannot chant this mantra at any other time, apart from the three ‘peher’. Besides, while chanting the sacred mantra, one must have a clear mind and a pure heart.
  3. While chanting the Gāyatrī Mantra, one must focus on correct punctuation and recitation of each word. It is believed that the wrong chanting of mantra invites dangerous consequences.
  4. Women are advised NOT to chant Gāyatrī Mantra. In ancient times, Hindu women also used to bear ‘Janeu’ and participate in all religious rituals. However, after Goddess Parvati passed on the blessing of menstruation to women, they were not considered fit to adorn the ‘pious’, a religious thread which a person wears only after being purged by sacred Gāyatrī Mantra.
  5. Furthermore, when women go through pregnancy, they are advised to stay away from all the rituals and practices related to Gods and Goddesses, which involved chanting of Gāyatrī Mantra.
  6. As per Shastras, recitation of Gāyatrī Mantra impacts three pivotal chakras inside the human body namely, Mulaadhar, Swadhishthan, and Manipur and according to science, a human body has two main glands- pituitary and prostate, both of which impact gender growth. Therefore it is believed that the chanting of mantra impacts the functioning of both these glands.
  7. So, it is believed that if a woman regularly recites the Gāyatrī Mantra, she may develop growth hormones of the masculine gender. As a consequence, they may see unexpected growth of facial hair, misbalanced menstruation cycle and change of skin tone or color.
  8. Similarly, if a pregnant woman recites the holy mantra, she may experience complications in breastfeeding and find it difficult to conceive next time. They may also witness severe muscular pain and low bone density.
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Holy Scriptures

Ramayana Vs RamCharitManas: The Difference!

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Ramayana is one of the greatest Indian epics amongst all the Vedic scriptures. Most people use the words, Ramayana and RamCharitManas interchangeably. Although both the books describe the journey of Rama, the Lord Vishnu’s incarnate on Earth, only a few know that both the books are different versions presented by different authors in different eras.

In fact, there are many differences between Ramayana and RamCharitManas. Here are some of the important differences.

  1. Ramayana is written by sage Valmiki in Treta Yuga in the Sanskrit language. On the contrary, RamCharitManas was written by the great poet Goswami Tulsidas in Kaliyuga in the Awadhi language in the 15th century AD (1511–1623).
  2. The word Ramayana is comprised of two words Ram and Aayanam (Story), which means Ram’s story, while the word RamCharitManas is derived from three words Ram, Charita (good deeds) and Manas (lake) which mean Lake of good deeds of Ram.
  3. Ramayana is composed of seven chapters or Kandams, namely, Bala Kandam, Ayodhya Kandam, Aranya Kandam, Kishkinda Kandam, Sundara Kandam, Yuddha Kandam, and Uttara Kandam. RamCharitManas also consists of seven chapters; however, there is a difference that Tulsidas named the Yuddha Kandam as Lanka Kand.
  4. Ramayana has been written in a format of ‘Slokas’ while RamCharitManas has been described in ‘Chaupais’ format. Ramayana is considered as the original story of Lord Ram and his journey, while RamCharitManas is the retelling of the Ramayana in which Tulsidas has acknowledged Valmiki in the epic manuscript.
  5. According to Ramayana, King Dasaratha had 350 wives out of which only three were considered as his principal wives, namely, Kausalya, Kaikeyi, and Sumitra. However, RamCharitManas mentions the King had only three wives.
  6. Ramayana depicts Lord Hanuman as a human being who belongs to the Vanar tribe. Here, Vanar is a tribe living in the forest. The word Vanar was derived from words — Van (forest) and Nar (man). On the other hand, in RamCharitManas he is depicted as a monkey and ‘Vanar’ is refer to species of Monkeys.
  7. As per Ramayana King Janaka had never arranged Sita Swayamvar as a mass function. It is mentioned in Ramayana that whenever any mighty individual used to visit Janaka, he used to show them the Bow of Shiva or Shiva Dhanusha and asked them to lift it. Therefore, when Vishwamitra visited Janaka along with Rama and Lakshmana, Janaka showed them the bow and asked Lord Rama to lift the bow. To Janaka’s surprise, Rama lifted the bow and hence Janaka proposed Rama to marry Sita.

On the contrary, in RamCharitManas, a Sita Swayamvar was organized by King Janaka and there was a competition to lift the bow of Shiva and Sita would marry the person who could lift the bow without breaking it. Nobody could lift the bow except Rama. However, Rama lifted it but broke it in the process.

  1. Ramayana depicts the abduction of Sita was real. She was captured forcefully by Ravana and Rama rescued Sita and she was asked to prove her purity to the world by taking the Agni Pariksha. On the contrary, RamCharitManas stated that Sita was never kidnapped. However, Rama predicted the kidnapping of Sita and created a clone of Sita. The real Sita was sent to Agni Deva and the Agni Pariksha was just a way to exchange clone of Sita with real Sita.
  2. As per Ramayana, Ravana came to fight Rama on the battlefield twice. First, he came at the beginning of the war and was humiliated by Rama but left alive. The second time, he came at the end of the war and was killed by Rama. On the other hand, in RamCharitManas, Ravana came to the battlefield only once at the end of the war.
  3. In Ramayana, Rama is portrayed as “Maryada Purushottam” which means a man with exceptional virtues or the best of men with excellent conduct. However, in RamCharitManas, Rama is depicted as Supreme Being, the incarnation of God and possessed a divine touch in his deeds. His actions were depicted as the Lord’s righteous ways to destroy evils and establish Dharma.
  4. Ramayana ends when Rama completed the journey of his mortal body by drowning himself in the Saryu river after he was saddened by the absence of Sita and Lakshmana. Sita had disappeared into mother Earth and Lakshmana had drowned himself in the Saryu river. But RamCharitManas ended with the birth of the twin sons Lava and Kusha to Ram and Sita and there was no mention of the death of Lakshmana or How Sita disappeared.
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