Pitru Paksha, shradh, mahalaya paksha

Pitru Paksha means shradh. Pitru Paksha is a special programme which we pray for our family member, who is no more.

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Pitru Paksha is one of the most important ceremonies of Hindus. Pitru Paksha is celebrated on the half of Hindu ashvin month.

Pitru Paksha starts from 30 September to 15 October as per the English calendar. Pitru Paksha is also known as Mahalaya Paksha. Pitru Paksh is a 15 day period when Hindus pray. this prayer is performed for all those who have passed away. The Pitra Paksh is usually done by relatives to help the person’s heart who have passed away.

All the ceremony is always performed by the eldest son of the dead person. This Amavasya is very special as it is the Mahalaya Amavasya, start of the very lucky Navratri of the Ashwin month. Shradh is performed every year on the anniversary of the dead person during the dark fortnight called Pitru Paksha.

The gifts are given to Brahmins for the help of the Pitris. Shradh gives satisfaction to Pitris of family. It can be performed at home or the places like Varanasi, Allahabad, Rishikesh, Haridwar and Rameshwaram. The Pitru Paksha programme does not take long time to complete. All the mantras and gifts are given to devas, rishis and Pitris. It takes 5 to 10 minutes to perform this ceremony. The ceremony itself is very simple and few ingredients are required kush grass, black sesame seeds, milk, water, purple or white flowers as well as the full names of the dead person’s family. Eating food from outside for the person doing Shradh is strictly prohibited. It is believed that Lord Yamraj visit the dead person’s homes on earth this time.

Date of Pitru Pakshaa (Shradh) in 2013:

Pitru Paksha (Shradh) begins on: Friday September 20 and ends on Friday October 04, 2013.

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Kansa

Kansa - Image Credit : http://www.flickr.com/photos/thompsonphotography1/

According to Hindu mythologies Kansa was the ruler of Vrishni kingdom. King Ugrasena was his father with Queen Padmavati being his mother. Kansa was the brother of Devaki, Lord Krishna’s mother.

He married the two daughters of Jarasandha, who was the King of Magadha. The names of his daughters were Asti and Prapti. Kansa himself became the king after overthrowing his father. He ruled as a tyrant and was a person with evil and wicked thinking. He was finally killed by Lord Krishna bringing and end to his tyranny.

Story of Lord Krishna Kills Kansa :

According to the mythologies Kansa loved his sister very much and used to fulfill all her wishes. He married his sister Devaki to Vasudeva, who was high ranking officer in his army and one of his cousins. But during the wedding ceremony Kansa was warned in a heavenly prophecy that he will be killed by the eighth child of his sister Devaki. He immediately imprisoned his sister and Vasudeva. He kept on killing all the new born of his sister and Vasudeva.

But when Lord Krishna was born he was miraculously saved during that night and was replaced by a female child. Soon Kansa came to know that the child has been born and is safe in another village. He ordered his soldiers to kill all the male infants who are one day old in Mathura and nearby places. Kansa sent Putana to kill infants in the village.

She succeeded in killing several infants by feeding them poisonous milk. Finally she tried to kill baby Krishna by feeding him poisonous milk, but baby Krishna sucked the life out of her and killed her instantly. Kansa tried several attempts to kill Krishna by sending the demon Trinivarta and Bakasura, but both of them died at the hands of Lord Krishna.

Finally Kansa invited his nephews Krishna and Balram at Mathura for a wrestling match and tried to kill them there, but Lord Krishna took Kansa by his hair and threw him to the ground and killed him.

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