Hindu Fasts: The Nine-Fold Propitiation

Said The God Of Fire:

Now I shall describe the process of performing the worship, known as the Nine-fold propitiation (Navavyuharchanam) as narrated by the god Hari to the holy sage Narada. The gods Vasudeva and Shankarshana together with the Vija Mantras a and a (an) sacred to them, should be worshipped at the centre of the lotus-shaped mystic diagram. The god Pradyumnya should be worshipped in its southern petal, the god Anirudhya with the Vija Mantra "As" (3T:) in the petal at its south-west. The Mantras running as "Om obeisance to Narayana" at its west, "Om obeisance to that eternal Brahma" at its north western petal, as well as the Mantra, running as "Ksham Vishnu, Kshoum Nrisinhaka."

Similarly the boar manifestation of Vishnu should be worshiped in the petal at its north, as well as at the doors of the diagram, situate at its west and the north east. Simi- larly the Mantra running as "Kam, Tham, Sam, Sham, Garutman Purvavaktra" should be located and worshipped at its south, the Mantra running as "Kham, Chachalim, Vam, Hum Fut," and "Kham, Dham, Pham, Sham" at its north. Likewise the Mantra running as "Vam, Nam, Mam, Ksham Kshoum" and "Dham, Dam, Bham and Ham" should be located and worshipped in the Mandala. The Mantras running as "Gam, Dham, Bham, Ham Pushti" (the goddess of health) and the Vija Mantras particularly sacred to the god, should be respectively worshipped on the north and the south of the mystic diagram. The Mantras running as "Dham Vanamala" (the garland of wild flowers worn by the god Vishnu, emblematic of the different worlds and solar systems), the Shrivatsa-mark on the breast of Vishnu, as well as the gem Kousthiibha with the Mantra "Sam, Ham, Lam, Chachahm, Tarn and Dam" held sacred to it, should be worshipped on the west of the divine seat (Peetha). The ten Angapujas of the god Vishnu, should be duly performed, while the Ananta manifestation of the deity, should be worshipped below the mystic diagram, by reciting the Mantra running as "Obeisance to Ananta." The gods such as Mahendra etc., should be duly wor- shipped, and the ten Anga-pujas should be respec- tively done unto them. The four pitchers (Ghatas) should be placed at the four gates of the mystic diagram, such as the east etc., and the latter gods should be invoked and worshipped over them. The gates of the diagram, as well the sky hangning as a canopy over it, should be consemplated as perme- ated with the essence of the Vija Mantras, respec- tively known as the fire, the wind, and the Moon Vijas.

Subsequent to that, the preceptor should contem- plate his psychic self as having pervaded the univer- sal space, and the Mantra known as the Atma Vija as dropping down with the moon-beam, saturated with the crystal drops of ambrosia, and entering his body from the above. Then he should deem himself as the absolute subjectivity (Purusha), evolved out of that mysterious Vija, and hold himself identical with the god Vishnu. Then he should contemplate the twelve parts of his body, such as head, heart, the taft of hair on his crown, etc., as having been permeated with the essence of that mystic Vija (Anga Nyasa), enveloping him as an armour. Similarly the twelve different parts of his organism, such as the breast, the head, the tuft of hair on his crown, back, and eyes, should be again contemplated as assigned to the Vija Mantras, sacred to the god and perme- ated with their essence. The preceptor should simi- larly contemplate his two hands, as assigned to and permeated with the Astra Mantras sacred to Vishnu, and cause a similar Nyasa to be practised by his disciple in his own body.

A mental worship of the god Hari, requires no flowers or offerings like the one made on the mystic diagram (Mandala). A strip of cloth should be tied round the eyes of the disciples, and they should be asked to throw flowers on the mystic diagram, di- vided into petals or chambers on which the names of the different manifestations of Vishnu, had been previously written. The disciples should be respec- tively named after the gods, on whose chambers the flowers cast by them, would fall down. The precep- tor should cause the disciples to be seated on his left hand side, and successively cast into the conse- crated fire, hundred and eight libations of clarified butter, containing the seeds of Vrihi grass and sessamum orientale. Again a thousand libations should be of- fered into the sacrificial fire, for the purification of the body of the disciple. Similarly a hundred liba- tions should be offered for the propitiation of the different manifestations of the god Navavyuha, after which the fine libation should be cast into the Homa- cavity. Thus a preceptor should initiate his disciples into the mysteries of the spiritual world, while they in their turn should worship him with presents and remunerations.

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