IMPORTANCE OF MUHURTHA – INDIAN CONTEXT
Smt.Edupuganti Padmaja Rani
M.Sc(Maths), M. A (Sanskrit), M.A(Astrology), M.A(Telugu), M.Ed, M.Phil
Doctoral Research Scholar, Karnataka Samskrit University, Bengaluru-560018
Muhurtha is a tool to harmonize your forces with nature and improve your chances of success.Five elements are chosen carefully for success in any new venture, namely Vara (weekday), Tithi (lunar day), Nakshatra (asterism), Yoga and Karana. These elements are easily determined through the planetary positions and are explicitly listed in Ephemeris or Panchanga. Muhurtha plays crucial part in its importance, starts from conception in the mother’s womb to ends with death. It contains 16 Samskaras called Shodasa Samskaras. Samskaras are the diverse rites of passage of a human being from conception to cremation, signifying milestones in an individual’s journey of life in Hinduism. The main aspect of samskara is to make the individual and society cultured, and thereby taking them from physical perfection and happiness to spiritual bliss. Considering the facts, muhurtha is important while building a house, make a significant purchase, start any important project like writing a book, release a book or movie, or when to begin a long journey etc. The same can also be noticed from our past. This paper portrays several instances from the past wherein muhurtha palyed a predominant role. The past instances of choosing an auspicious muhurtha resulting in success / favourable outcome, and similarly an inauspicious muhurtha resulting in failure/ agony / distress is clearly made out. Contemplating the research in this area, it may be envisaged that ‘Muhurtha’ is influential in determining the after effects.
Muhurtha, Auspicious, Indian,Samskara,Ramayana, Inauspicious, Uttaraphalguni, Marriage, Retrogration, Paapargala, Debilitated, Birth, Timing, Mars, Ascendant, Ashtakavarga, Srimadbhagavata, Lord Rama.
paresam ca parasyate
savisnv-akhyo ‘dhiyajno ‘sau
Astrology has a necessary relation with time. It deals with the effects of planetary motions including the sun and the moon. Its basic tenet is the confirmed scientific fact of the effects of radiation on all terrestrial phenomena that the Hindus discovered it ages before is a testimony to the intelligence and accomplishments of that generation. The effect of sun’s rays on biological activity and those of the moon on psychological processes is well-established. Agricultural activities like planting, cultivation, growth, maturity and harvest are all dependent upon seasonal changes and solar radiation.
The horoscope is a part of Indian Astrology in Muhurtha section. In Ramayana epic, vivaha episode, marriage in “uttara star” is mentioned, as well as the entry into the Parnasala in a auspicious time which is also mentioned. At the same time it is told by our elders that , Lord Rama has taken the muhurtha from Ravana for the war with Ravana, Duryodhana took the muhurtha for Kurukshetra war from Sahadeva in general. The earliest history tells us that, the Muhurthas dominated the Natal Chart. These are some of the stories that are widely heard. Across the world we find a Mahatma in 20% of the world’s most widely distributed category and a Mahatma in 30% of the world’s most widely distributed category whereas in India which has a 5% category of population has many Mahatmas by following melapakam, muhurtha for Vivaha(marriage), muhurtha for Santhana (It is described in ŚrīmadBhāgavatam that KashyapPrajapathi and Diti got children like demons like Hiranyaksha and Hiranyakasyap due to inauspicious time of conceiving).
MEANING OF MUHURTHA
From an individual context the meaning of Muhurtha can be interpreted as follows:
- an auspicious moment
- a division of time
- a selected good time for doing something
- a fortunate time
- time good for doing something specific
Above all means are selected for starting or performing an important event or action in life.
Muhurtha is a Hindu unit of measurement for time in the Hindu calendar. A Muhurtha equals 2 Ghadiyas or approximately 48 minutes. It is stated in Manu Samhita that eighteen nimeshas (twinklings of the eye, are one kashtha), thirty kashthas one kala, thirty kalas one Muhurtha, and as many (Muhurthas) one day and night.
Muhurtha is a tool to harmonize your forces with nature and improve your chances of success. Five elements are chosen carefully for success in any new venture, namely Vara (weekday), Tithi (lunar day), Nakshatra (asterism), Yoga and Karana. These elements are easily determined through the planetary positions and are explicitly listed in Ephemeris or Panchanga. In addition, for selecting a propitious moment or Muhurtha, the Ascendant and Moon must be strong, both at the time selected as well as in relation to the horoscope of the concerned individual.
It is a common practice in Hinduism to perform or avoid activities like important religious ceremonies on the basis of the quality of a particular Muhūrta. One or more Muhūrtas are recommended by the Vedic scriptures when performing rituals and other ceremonies. This is demonstrated in the way “Muhūrt” is used in present-day South Asia for calculating the most auspicious moment for a Vedic-Hindu Wedding ceremony. Astrologers are often hired to calculate a moment for the wedding so that any possible divinely-sourced problems can be averted. .
HISTORY OF MUHURTHA
Muhurtha is a part of Samhita. Samhita means to arrange together in union or a structured combination of verses or texts, it is one of the Panchaskanda’s of Jyotisha – Siddhanta, Samhita, Hora, Prasna and Sakuna Sastras. The gravitational force between the planets of the solar system make a lot of difference on the living & nonliving things on the earth. e.g. the gravitational force between the Moon and the earth causes the high & low tides in the ocean. Thus Muhurtha is a typical combination of the planets in the sky which make a favorable effect on the human beings.
Brahma Muhurtha (time of Brahma) is a period (Muhurtha) one and a half hours before sunrise or more precisely 1hr 36mins before sunrise. (i.e. 96 Minutes = 2 Muhūrta or 4 Ghaṭīkā.) Literally meaning “The Creator’s Hour”, it is traditionally the penultimate phase or Muhurtha of the night and is considered an auspicious time for all practices of yoga and most appropriate for meditation, worship or any other religious practice. Each Muhurtha lasts 48 minutes, and therefore the Brahma Muhurtha begins 1 hour and 36 minutes before sunrise, and ends 48 minutes before sunrise.
“brAhmIMuhurthaMuttiShTHEtswasthOrakshArthaMAyusha:tatrasarvArthashAntyarthamsmarecchamadhusUdanaM”(Ref: AshtangaHridayam) The line translates as: ‘One should wake up in the Brahma Muhurtha for sustaining perfect health and for achieving a long life span, as desired.
This Muhurtha is present on every day and its duration is around 48 minutes. This the time when the Sun locates himself in the 10th house from the lagna during that time and 10th represents the house of Karmas, and placement of the Sun means success. This Muhurtha is capable of removing all the doshas prevalent at that time. Muhurtha plays a crucial part, its importance starts from conception in the mother’s womb and ends with end of life. It contains 16 Samskaras called Shodasa Samskaras.
Samskaras are in one context, the diverse rites of passage of a human being from conception to cremation, signifying milestones in an individual’s journey of life in Hinduism. The main aspect of samskara is to make the individual and society cultured, and thereby taking them from physical perfection and happiness to spiritual bliss.
- Garbhadana Samskara – is performed by a married couple when conceiving a child. This important Samskara raises the act of conception to a sacred occasion, and is powerfully purifying and uplifting for the unborn child.
- Pumsavana Samskara – is usually performed between the second and fourth month of pregnancy. Its purpose is: to insure the good health of the foetus and the proper formation of its organs, so that the family line and tradition will perpetuate thorugh the baby.
- Simantonoyana Samskara – In the fourth or fifth month of pregnancy, the mind of the foetus begins to develop. This is when simantonoyana Samskara is performed. Its purpose is to protect the foetus–especially its newly forming mind–from all negative influences, and also to stimulate the development of the unborn child’s intellect.
- Jatakarma Samskara is the ritual performed at the birth of a child noting the birth time and star and thus create a birth chart which is supposed to be the blue print of one’slife.
- Namakarana Samskara – On the eleventh day after the child’s birth, namakaranaSamskara is performed. In this ceremony, the child receives its name.
- Nishkramana Samskara – The baby’s first outing into the world, beyond the confines of the home.
- Annaprashana Samsakara – The first feeding of solid food to the baby, usually in the sixth month after birth.
- Karnavedha Samskara – usually performed in the sixth or seventh month after birth, consists of the piercing of the baby’s ear lobes, so earrings may be worn.
- Chudakarana Samskara – At the end of the first year after birth, or during the third year, the child’s hair is shaved–all but a tuft on the top of the head. This ritual shaving of hair, performed with ceremony, prayers, and chanting of Vedic hymns, is Chudakarana Samskara This Samskara is for both boys and girls.
- Vidyarambha Samskara – begins a student’s primary education by ceremonially introducing the child to the alphabet.
- Upanayana Samskara – initiates the formal study of the Vedas. It is one of the most important and esteemed of the Samskaras. Upon performance of Upanayana, a boy traditionally moves from home to live in the ashram of the guru.
- Samavartana Samskara – With Samavartana Samskara the disciple graduates from his Vedic studies and returns from the house of his guru. Thereafter, the disciple will marry and raise a family, and so enter the stage of householder, grihasthashrama.
- Vivaha Samskara – The traditional Hindu wedding ceremony is known as Vivaha Samskara It is considered by many to be the most important of all the samskaras.
- Panchamahayagna Samskara – A married couple performs the Panchamahayagna, or five great sacrifices, daily. In this Samskara, one honours, in turn, the rishis, the gods, the parents, humankind, and all created beings.
- Vanaprastha Samskara – According to the Vedic tradition, Vanaprastha is the third stage of life, following brahmacharya (Vedic student/disciple) and grihasta (householder). Here, a one leaves behind one’s life in the world and retires to the forest (or serving the society), to live an ascetic life devoted to service, study of the scriptures and to meditation.
- Antyeshti Samskara – The final sacrament, the funeral rites, are known as AntyeshtiSamskara.
IMPORTANCE OF MUHURTHA
The Natal Chart is about ascertaining the future from the time of birth. But, suppose one is planning an important event or a project, and especially wants it to be successful. Logically, he should choose the best time available within a particular “window of time,” to get the best results. This is called Muhurtha or Electional astrology. Basically it is the science of timing, choosing the best time to start something in order to get the best result. There are certain events in life that we would especially like to see turn out successful, such as a business or marriage. If one has undergone all the trouble to match charts for compatibility, then you should also choose a good muhurtha for the wedding, in order to start at the right time and encourage a favorable outcome.
When to build a house, make a significant purchase, start any important project like writing a book, when to release a book or movie, or when to begin a long journey. Vedic Kings would consult their astrologers regarding when to begin a military campaign or sign a peace treaty. Vedic parents would consult as to when to conceive a child and when to perform the child’s samskaras (sacraments). Gurus and Acharya’s (great spiritual leaders) would choose auspicious muhurthas for conducting an initiation ceremony, installing a Deity, or laying the cornerstone of a temple (Example: Solar and lunar eclipses are considered very good for initiations). Vaidyas (Ayurvedic Physicians) would choose auspicious times for performing surgery or beginning a regimen of treatment (Example: Since the moon rules over fluids, it is considered very undesirable to have surgery near the full-moon day, because of the tendency for excessive loss of
fluid and danger of hemorrhaging).
We note that because Diti was in a hurry and conceived her children during an inauspicious time her off-spring were demons. She did this despite the warning from her husband.
Choosing an auspicious time is more important for the samskaras, like garbhodana, vidyarambha (first education) upanayanam etc. Some, like the samskara immediately after birth have to be done then and there so there is no question of choosing a time. The same goes for Antyesti, the funeral rites. But that is not the case with the other samskaras.
Choosing an auspicious time should be done by a well trained and experienced astrologer. Choosing an auspicious time is not a panacea for everything but only one factor. Returning to our farming metaphor, while it is absolutely necessary that seeds are planted at the right time it is not sufficient to produce a good harvest. Other factors are also necessary like sufficient rain, cultivation, fertilization, soil type, etc. So, while choosing an auspicious time is a necessary condition it is not a sufficient condition to ensure success. As Arjuna said in the Sabhaparva of the Mahabharata to Yudhisthir, thus choosing an auspicious time comes under “determined effort” and we then depend on Krishna for the result.
rte ‘pi tvamnabhavisyantisarve
“The Supreme Personality of Godhead said: Time I am, the great destroyer of the worlds, and I have come here to destroy all people. With the exception of you [the Pandavas], all the soldiers here on both sides will be slain.” Bhagavad-gitas it is 11.32.
SIGNIFICANCE OF MUHURTHA IN INDIAN CONTEXT
We researchers have taken into consideration different scenarios during different times show the importance of the variable MUHURTHA. Importance of Muhurtha based on auspicious time and instance. It was taken from Valmiki Ramayana Bala Kanda that star uttara was taken as Muhurtha for wedding. Result that would last for lifetime with happiness and pleasant.
वैवाहिकम्प्रशंसन्तिभगोयत्रप्रजापतिः || १–७२–१३
“Oh, Brahman, the savants acclaim that part of the day as the best for wedding ceremonies when both of the pre-Phalguni and post-Phalguni stars are available, and on such a time where post-Phalguni is ruling, for which Bhaga is the presiding deity for progeny…” So said Janaka to the marriage party. [1-72-13].
- There is a lot of commentary from the viewpoint of astrology regarding these stars and days of this marriage. Some have said that uttaredivase ‘on best day…’ phalguni= puurvaphalguni ‘pre-Phalguni… on the best day under pre-Phalguni star…’ which usually does not happen, but it is also said to be correct by Maheshvara Tiirtha, as the Moon will be in the 12th house at that time, so the marriage is agreeable…’ However the stars for best results of marriages are: rohiNiimR^igashiirShyaNiuttaraphalguniisvaatiitivivaahasyanakShatraaNi| bodhaayanasuutraaNi.
- Rama also gone for Chitrakoot forest – Valmiki Ramayana Ayodhya Kanda where Lakshmana builds a leaf thatched cottage, where Rama enters in the Cottage at an auspicious time after due worship of respective deities. Resulted meeting of people, happiness,and free mind in everything.
त्वरसौम्यमुहूर्तोऽयम्ध्रुवश्चदिवसोऽप्ययम् || २–५६–२५
“Oh, gentle brother! Boil this antelope’s meat. We shall worship the leaf-hut. This day and this Muhurtha also are of a distinctive character. Be quick.[2-56-25]
अद्भर्जपैश्चवेदोक्तैर्धर्भैश्चससमित्कुशैः || २–५६–३४
तदाविविशतुःशालाम्सुशुभाम्शुभलक्षणौ || २–५६–३५
Rama and Lakshmana along with Sita, having auspicious characteristics, satisfied the spirits by crowns of flowers obtained in the forest, by fruits roots and cooked meat, by water, by prayers as uttered in the sacred texts (Vedas), by sacred grass, by fuel and Kusa grass and then entered the auspicious leaf-hut.[2-56-34,35]
- In Valmiki Ramayana Yuddha Kanda lord Rama heard the whereabouts of Sita by Hanuman, and started from Kishkindha immediately with Vanarasena. He suggested that it was the muhurtha called Vijayee Muhurtham,and with the permission of Sugreeva and Lakshmana, Rama started from Kishkindha.
उत्तराफल्गुनीहिअद्यश्वस्तुहस्तेनयोक्ष्यते || ६–४–५
“This northern planet of Phalguni will be in conjunction with the Hasta star tomorrow. Hence, let us depart today itself with all the troops accompanying us, Oh, Sugreeva!” [3-4-5]
- In Indian Mythology Mahabharata Uparicharavasuvu a Chedi King, was on a hunting expedition when he had a nocturnal emission while dreaming of his wife. Using an eagle addressing that is auspicious time for begetting children for them. He sent his semen to his queen but due to a fight mid-air with another eagle, the semen fell into the river and was swallowed by the cursed Adrika-fish. Consequently, the fish became pregnant. Soon, a fisherman caught the pregnant fish and cut it open to find two babies in the womb of the fish, one male and one female. The fisherman presented the children to the king, who kept the male child. The king gave the female child back to the fisherman, naming her Matsya-gandha(“She who smells like fish”). The mama fisherman raised the girl as his daughter and named her Kali because of her complexion. Over the course of time, Kali earned the name Satyavati “truthful”.
- The Devi Bhagavata Purana narrates that when Kali (Satyavati) was ferrying the rishi (sage) Parashara across the river Yamuna, the sage sensed that the time period was very astute to produce a very meritorious heir, who would become a great sage, if he has coitus within minutes. He wanted Kali to satisfy his lust and held her right hand. Result – Dwaipayan Vyasa was born for parashar and satyavati. He adorned the tree of the Vedas with many Sakhas(branches). It is because he expanded the Vedas many Sakhas, that he is denominated also as VedaVyas. He composed eighteen Puranas, Samhitas, the excellent Mahabharat, subdivided the Vedas and made his disciples Sumantu, Jaimini, Paila, Vaisampayan, Asita, Devala and his son Suka to study them.
- According to a story from Bhagavata Purana, Hiranyakashipu and Hiranyaksha together called the Hiranyas – were born to Diti and the sage Kashyapa. It is said that asuras were born to them as a result of their union at the time of dusk, we note that because Diti was in a hurry and conceived her children during an inauspicious time her off-spring were demons. She did this despite the warning of her husband which was said to be an inauspicious time for such a deed.
O haughty one, you will have two contemptuous sons born of your condemned womb. Unlucky woman, they will cause constant lamentation to all the 3 worlds
- This marriage muhurtha. Not successful, within one week wife and husbands are separated and taken divorce. 05.05.1993, Muhurtha timing 10.30AM, Tirupathi,
Swathi Star, Midhuna Lagnam. In this Muhurtha we can find kuja in Debiliation family place. Ketu Vyaya place. Papargala. At the same time Maha Dasha-Rahu , Antar Dasha-Rahu. In Ashtakvarga very less points in panchama, shasta, saptama, asthma, vyaya. No Harmonious life. In Papargala planets kuja(kutumbastana) in “kulanasha” amsha, saptamadhipati (kalatra) brihaspati in “kantakamsha”. Indicates result not favorable.
- Another marriage Muhurtham 07.12.2014, 08.32AM, Tanuku(West Godavari District, Andhra Pradesh). They took divorce within short time after marriage.Ascendant Lord, 4th Lord Guru is in 8th place.8th Lord moon is in 6th place sun Saturn mercury is in 12th place. Papargala for lagna 7th places. Mars Dasha running. Mars is a part of Papargala. Placed in second indicates family place. Impacts on family negatively. Mars Mahadasha, Shani Antardasha. Sani also part of papargala in vyaya. In Sani ashtakavarga very less points for dwiteeya(kutumba), asthma(arogya, nangalia) navama(purvaPunya) places. In Kuja ashtakavarga very less points in Saptama(kalathrasthanam). From Ascendant, from moon no jaamitra suddi. All indications resulted to no happy prosperous between couple.
- One person opens courier shop. And close it within very short period. 12.12.1998. Muhurta time 08:35AM, Rajahmundry(East Godavari district Andhra Pradesh), Hastha star, Dhanurlagnam. 3rd Lord very important for communication. Saturn in debiliate and retrograted also. No strength in third place. In ascendant placed Shasta labhadipati and paapi sukra. Kuja Drishti in Ashtakavarga, in lagna(samardya) asthma(ayurdaya) points very less. Chandra Dasha, benefit 3, expenses 4. Work not going forward. Confidence nil. All indications resulted in closure.
- Started juice shop on 23.07.2018. Muhurtha time 08:55AM, Rajahmundry(East Godavari District, Andhra Pradesh), Anuradha Star, Simha Lagna. It indicates venus enemies house. Moon in debiliate. Both are very important for juice shop. In vyaya three planets. Saturn in 7th place retrograded. (Social dealings) started in Anuradha star which already in elinati sani. Resulted in closure within week.
Astrology has a necessary relation with time. Muhurtha are evidences for everyday life of humankind linked with astrology. It deals with the effects of planetary motions including the sun and the moon. Its basic tenet is the confirmed scientific fact of the effects of radiation on all terrestrial phenomena. That the Hindus discovered it ages before is a testimony to the intelligence and accomplishments of that generation. The effect of sun’s rays on biological activity and those of the moon on psychological processes is well-established. Using muhurthas, starting from the formation in the womb of mother to last span of human life which are called samskaras. Samskara are rites of passage in a human being’s life described in ancient Sanskrit texts, as well as a concept in the karma theory of Indian philosophies.
In Astrology, the birth chart plays a key role in human beings life. We cannot alter the birth chart, but while performing important activities in our lives, selecting a best muhurtha will be beneficial. Selecting muhurtha is in our hands, an auspicious muhurtha selected for conception led to many great personalities born in our country though the birth chart cannot be altered. For each and every ritual there have been muhurthas in olden days, and people used to obtain best results from it. There are evidences that in very early days, Kings in their kingdoms have to appointed personal astrologers and took their advice’s for each and every activity. We can see such incidents of dependency on astrology even in Ramayana and Mahabharata. Only in India, people are fixing muhurthas to marriage to beget good children. It can be confidently said, if we fix muhurthas for any works, the outcome also will be good not only to the individual but also to the society . If one starts vidyabhyasa on anadhyaya days, such person becomes a failure to himself and becoming harmful to the society. So right muhurtha is important in taking a crucial decisions. So following muhurthas, particularly for children, as they are future hopes to the society, will be good and their lives will be happier.
Agricultural activities like planting, cultivation, growth, maturity and harvest are all dependent upon seasonal changes and solar radiations. Muhurtha is a tool to harmonize your forces with nature and improve your chances of success. It is a natural desire of every one that any of the above events or occasions in our life should be trouble free. Any unwanted, unpleasant or sorrowful incident should not take place during these important events or occasions. If these events or occasions are started on a Shubha Muhurtha(auspicious time), then events are completed and successful, life will be prosperous. Time and again it can be contemplated that, systematic use of all muhurthas and samskaras can help individuals to lead a happy, prosperous, healthy and systematic life.
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