The Sankatahara Chaturthi Vratha occurs during the fourth day of the They Pirai or Krishna Paksha, every month. Every year, we have the Maha Sankatahara Chathurthi. The Vratha starts before sun-rise and lasts until moon-rise just before mid-night. This is observed in order to overcome difficulties and problems. People suffering from the bad effects of Moon or Mars can perform this viratha.
Sankata Hara Chaturthi Vratam :
Sankata Hara Chathurthi Vratam is very auspicious for removing all obstacles in life and to convert your problems into opportunities.
You may chant Ganesha Sahasranaamam, Sangashta Naashana Ganesha Sthothram (from Naarada Puraana), or recite simple sthothras on Lord Ganesha on this day and invoke His Grace. It is customary to fast throughout the day and break the fast after sighting the Moon cresecent on this day. Those who can afford time and resources can organize homams or abhishekams in nearby temples or through competent Pandits and get manifold benefits.
"Sankatahara Chathurthi" falls every month on the chavithi (fourth day) after Pournima (full moon day). "Sankata" means trouble, "hara" means to take it off. You can fast on this day, taking head bath in the morning and not eating in the day till the evening, have thins ke drinking milk and having a fruit, and having food only in the evening after pooja after offering Naivedya to lord Ganesha. You can also have just a one time meal that day or having tiffin at night depending on your ability to fast.
You can perform this vrat for one time or making a sankalpa to do for 3 / 5 / 7 / times. It is said that number 3 is more dearer to Ganesha and hence 3, 12 or 21 are usually preferred. However, we can take a vow to do what ever number of times i.e, chaturthis we feel like doing.
In the evening, like you do for any vrat, make a mandap and place a photo of Lord Ganesha. In a small plate, separately, place another Ganesh made of Turmeric on a beetle leaf. Light diyas and agarbatti and do the shodasopachara pooja just like we do for Vinayaka Chaturthi - dhyanam, Avahanam, Asanam.......
breaking a coconut and offering plantains and Naivedyam.
Offer "Kudum / Kolakattai / Modakas (rice flour cooked with a tsp of bengal gram dal and tsp of ghee and jeera each and then made into balls and steamed - there are varations in this preparation) as Naivdya.
It is preferred to light diya for Lord Vinayaka using Coconut oil. You can also offer some sweets etc again this is all depending on our capacity and ability. Main thing that is required is devotion and shraddha. The next day, place the turmeric ganesha in the 'Tulasi' plant or any other flowering plant that is having green leaves.
Lord Vinayaka is the one removes all the obstacles. On a daily basis you can recite the following Ganapathi slokas.
DEAR Bhargavi, Every 4th day from Purnima day,sankatanaasana or sankatahara chaturthi. On the day dont eat nonveg,onion,garlic,masala items. take simple food inthe noon (if you unable to starv wholday)Night after seeing the moon - take fruit and milk.(if not well, you can take moongdal porridge with sugar.) Pray Lord Ganesha with his sahasranaamam/sahasranaamaavaLi/ganesha sloka as follows: OM THATHPURUSHAAYA VITHMAHE VAKRATHUNDAAYA THEEMAHI,THANNO THANTHA PRACHOTHAYAATH. Wish U all the best.
Of the two chathurthi days in month ,the krishna paksha chathurthi is observed as sankata hara (destroyer of obstacles) chathurthi is celebrated. during the day fasting and vinayak poojai is perform in the house. In the evening, archanai is performed in tghe temple and after citing Moon and prayer, the fasting is ended and food is taken. People used to take the vratam for a specific period and sometimes regularly
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