Puratassi Fasting, or Puratasi Vratam, is observed in the Tamil month of Puratasi (September – October). Puratasi Masam is of great importance to Tamilians as it is believed that Lord Venkateswara (Balaji) appeared on the earth in this month. Puratassi Saturdays are dedicated to Lord Shani or Sani dev. Some people observe partial fasting on all days in Puratassi others limit it to Puratasi Saturdays.
In 2009, Puratassi month begins on September 17 and ends on October 17.
Some more details about Puratasi Vratam :
On a Saturday during the fasting month of Purtassi a special prayer dedicated to Lord Vishnu culminates in the breaking of the fast with vegetarian delicacies. According to tradition the prayers have to be done late in the afternoon so that the fast may be broken at sundown.
A lot of preparation goes into this prayer. In the absence of a picture of Lord Rama or Vishnu or Krishna, a drawing is made of the Namam. The Namam is in the form of a ‘V’. This is drawn with a special white chalk referred to as the Nama Katti. To complete the drawing a red line is drawn down the middle. The Namam is also drawn on the foreheads of the men and children present. A red dot is made on the women’s forehead.
A banana leaf is placed on the altar on which the various dishes prepared are offered to Lord Vishnu.
Payasam, sweet rice, vadas, woorandai and kozhu kattai can be prepared for Naivedyam. You can also offer Vegetarian dishes along with these items.
A theertham is made with milk, sugar and tulsi leaves.
The prayer begins outside the house or temple, as this is the propitiation of the sun. A vessel of water is placed, the camphor is lit and a coconut is broken. The worshippers then move into the house/temple chanting the Garuda Patthu. Each verse ends with the devotees chanting Govinda! Govinda! Govinda!
In the house the main prayer continues with the turning of camphor, burning of agarbathi, singing of songs, ringing of bells and blowing of the conch. The Thiru Nama Pathakkam is chanted, the theertham is then handed around to all present. The right hand is cupped over the left, a tulsi leaf is placed in the ‘cup’ with a bit of milk. The milk is sipped and the tulsi leaf is eaten. Finally, the blessed food (prasad) is offered to all present.
Requirements for the prayer:
3 Coconuts, 1 bottle rosewater,Turmeric Powder, 5 betel leaves and nuts,Flowers for garland and petals, Camphor, Incense Sticks, Sambrani, Charcoal, 1 Pkt Namakatti (white stick, Red or orange powder (tirusanaum), Thulsi leaves, Sugar candy, Avaal kadaly
Preparations for the Prayer:
The entire house should be cleansed (day before prayer).
One should wash their lamp and dot it with namam and tirusanaum (day before prayer).
A kolam should be made at the front entrance of the house using either rice flour or mealie meal (before commencing prayer).
A garland should be made using fresh flowers and thulsi leaves.
The garland must be hung on the door (before commencing prayer).
The prayer should be observed once all prasadam has been made.
Simple procedure on how to perform the Pooja :
1. First construct a Vinayagar Take some turmeric powder mix water or rose water to form a thick paste. Mould into a mountain like shape thereafter a kumgum dot should be placed in front and sprinkle kadam podi over Vinayaga. A piece of grass having 1 stem and 3 blades of grass (Arum pul) favorite offering to Vinayagar placing it on top of the head.
2. If you have a brass, copper or wooden murti it may also be used for the prayer.
3.Offer sugar candy avaal kadaly to Vinayagar.
4.A photo of Lord Vishnu/ Venkateshwara, a mirror or a piece of wood may be place in the center where by a Namam may be drawn on.
5.Place a flower, thulsi and vadaa garland around the item that is going to be used.
6.Place all prasadam in front of the Namam with betel leave, betel nut, flower and a coin.
7. Namam should be placed on each person’s forehead. The men a white “V” like shape with the vertical red line in the center and the women a white horizontal line with a vertical red line in the center.
8.Once everything has been set up inside take Vinayagar and proceed outside. Vinayagar will be placed outside with prasadam (facing EAST).
9.Vinayagar should be invoked first by lighting incense sticks and offering flower petals and chanting the mantra of Ganesha (Aum gam ganesha ye namaha) or (Aum gam ganesha potri) can be chanted 18 or 27 times.
10. 3 Camphor must be lit in front of Vinayagar; the 1st coconut must be turned around Vinayagar and the Sun thereafter breaking the coconut and turn camphor.
11. Sprinkle water 3 times over the prasadam.
12. Camphor’s would be lit leading to the front entrance by chanting (Govinda! Govinda! Govinda)).
13. At the front entrance 3 camphor must be lit and the second coconut would be smashed on the ground to welcome the Lord into the house by chanting (Govinda! Govinda! Govinda!).
14. Proceed to the prayer where everything has been place.
15. Light incense sticks and burn charcoal and sambrani. Take flower petals and offer at the feet of the Lord by chanting “Om Venkateshwara ye namaha or potri.
16. Turn coconut clockwise 3 times and break. Place 2 halves on either side of Venkateshwara.
17. Turn camphor
18. Sprinkle water over prasadam.
19. Kneel down and pray.
20. A song or a prayer can be sung in praise of Venkateshwara.
21. You should leave the prayer place for at least 5 minutes without any disturbance
Meaning of Mantra:
Om Venkateshwara namaha - means I offer unto the supreme God who destroys the sins of the people in this material world.
Om Venkateshwara POTRI - means -salutation unto the supreme God who destroys the sins of the people in this material world.
VENKATESHWARA GAYATRI MANTRA:
OM NAMO NARAYNA VIDMAHAE, VASUDEVAYA DHIMAHI, TANNO VISHNUM PRACHODADAYAT
May we realize this Narayana the in dwelling being who is the spirit of all. May we meditate upon your manifested Vishnu aspect and thus become illumined ones.
Song For Venkateshwara
Hari Naa-raa-ya-naa Govindhaa Jaya Naa-raa-ya-naa Govindhaa (Hari)
The fasting month of Puratasi - is being observed by many south Indians
The Tamil month of Puratasi is closely associated with Lord Venkateswara (Lord Vishnu). It is also believed that Lord Venkateswara came to the earth in the month of Puratasi (Puratassi) as Balaji. In 2009, Puratasi month begins on September 17 and ends on October 17.
The Saturdays of the month are auspicious and are dedicated to pleasing Shani (Saturn). It is believed that Shani loses its powers on Saturday.
Several devotees of Balaji only take a meal during the Saturdays of this month. They also spend the Saturdays praying to Lord Vishnu.
Special pujas are offered in Vishnu temples in South India during the month. According to Hindu mythology, Lord Venkateswara or Balaji descended on earth in the month of Puratasi. Special prayers are offered at the Srirangam Ranganathaswamy Temple during this month. Lord Vishnu devotees consider this as the apt month for thanking Lord Vishnu for preserving the Mother Nature.
There is a general belief that Saturdays are free from the influences of Lord Shani or Sani Bhagvan and it is easy to please him on this day. Generally, other navgrahas, other than Sani, have more influence during Puratasi month and therefore it is easy to get blessings from Lord Balaji.
Devotees of Lord Venkateswara take only a meal on Puratasi Saturdays. Some devotees only eat vegetarian food during the month. On Saturdays, Naamum, the two feet symbol of Lord Vishnu’s feet, is drawn on the forehead by males and women opt for a red dot. Hymns dedicated to Lord Vishnu are chanted on Saturdays.
Large number of devotees visit the temples of Lord Vishnu and special flags with Garuda emblem are hoisted in temples. The month is also important from agricultural point of view as it is an important sowing month. http://www.hindu-blog.com…
To make maa vilakku: This method was told by my sister-in-law. It came out very well. Take 1cup of rice flour and mix it with 1cup of sugar. In blender dry grind little sugar and 2pods of cardamom. Add it to the rice mixture and mix well. Break a coconut and take the water in a cup. By using this water little by little to the rice flour make it into a thick dough. Then shape it into vilakku with a beak in front. Keep kumkum to it and into the deep hole in the centre put ghee and thread. Light it as a lamp to God. Yellu (Sesame Rice)
Sesame seeds - 2tsp Dry red chilli - 1 or 2 nos Hing - little Mustard - 1tsp Urad dhal - 1tsp Channa dhal - 1tsp Curry leaves - little Rice - 1/4cup Salt - to taste Sesame oil - 2tsp
Method 1. Wash and cook rice. Allow it to cool. 2. Dry roast sesame seeds and red chilli. 3. In a blender dry grind redchilli, sesame seeds and salt. Add it to the rice. 4. In a heated kadai, add oil, then add mustard, hing, urad dhal, channa dhal and fry. Once it is golden brown add it to the rice. Add curry leaves and mix the rice well. http://radhasounder.blogspot.com…
In South Africa during the tamil month of Purtassi most tamils keep a one month veg fast, observing Saturdays with prayer and a big prayer to culminate the period. It's dedicated to Lord Vishnu or Venketesa. When the main prayer is done namo is put on the foreheads, maa vilku is made and we shout Govinda Govinda. People say that we only do this in South africa and this is not observed in Tamil Nadu. I'm interested to know what people in India esp Tamil Nadu observe or know about the significance of Puratassi. However I must add that to me no prayer is wasted and this is a peaceful time where more effort is made to become closer to God. In South Africa most families are not vegetarian and at least during this month many people follow a vegetarian diet, alcohol is given up and the familiy enjoys this peaceful period. Given our violent country the atmosphere to is given good vibrations. To those keeping the Purtassi fast I wish you well and may God's blessings be with you and your family.
Purattasi is the name of the 6th month in the solar calendar followed in Tamilnadu and other Tamil speaking areas abroad. The corresponding name of Malayalam calendar is after the rashi, where Sun is perceived during the month, as "Kanni" which is the changed form of Sanskrit "kanya". The said month is usually from 16th Sepember to 15th October, one or two days either side +/-, every year. The lunar calendar corresponding months are Bhadrapada & Aswina (since fraction of each month will fall in any solar month). The name of every month in Solar as well as lunar calendar is after the star on which the full moon is perceived to occur regularly (one or two stars either side due to rotation of planets is common). Thus Purattasi month is the month in which full moon normally occurs either on Poorattadhi/Uttirattadhi stars (malayalam: Pooruttadhi- Kannada: Poorvabhadrapada/ Uttarabhadrapada; Hindi: Purvabhadra/uttarbhadra; sanskrit: Poorva Proshthapada/ Uttara Proshthapada). From this Sanskrit Proshthapada word, Purattasi has evolved. The month is associated with worship of Tirupati Venkataramana Swami. On all Saturdays of this month, people observe various 'vratam' like begging (to ward off ego) and with the alms, cook food, offer naivedya and also do 'annadanam', go on foot atop he hills of Tirumala, or atleast do a pooja at home and perform 'samaradhana-mass feeding' to the extent possible. It is to be noted that though Telugu speaking people have adopted the lunar calendar as in Karnataka, Maharashtra and parts of Gujarat, the Saturdays of Purattasi the solar month alone are reckoned, in conformity with the original Tamil tradition of Tirupati, espite the fact of its inclusion in Andhra Pradesh five decades ago.
It is one of Tamil month. It is sixth month in Tamil Year. In this month the saturdays are special for Lord Vishnu. In every vishnu temple there is special pooja. The belief is on going to vishnu temple for this month saturdays is equal to going to temple for the whole year.
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