Antyeshti

antyeshti

Daily Rituals:

Bodhayana Venkatesiya Prayoga has prescribed daily rituals after the cremation of the corpse and Nagna Prachadana Sraddha. These daily rituals have to be done every day during the first ten days after death. These rituals include establishing the Pretašila, inviting the forefathers to it and offering them rice balls, sesame water etc. But when do these first day's rituals begin, whether it is from the moment of the person breathing his last or from the time when the cremation takes place is a question that has to be answered.

According to Aswalayana Brahmakrma samuccaya after the cremation, the chief mourner and others have to go to a riverside, take bath, offer cloth, water (Vasodaka] and sesame water and then the first day's rituals have to take place. The rites of the first day are to be taken up either on the same day at the same time or on other days in the morning somewhere near a water resource outside the village. The expressions -Same day, Same time, other days- do not make the matter clear. So when does the first day begin what are the rites to be observed on that day - all these are to be considered here.

Aswalyana Grhya Sutra does not make any reference to this. But Aswalyana Grhya Paishkaras make reference to the rites of the first day. To satisfy the thirst and hunger of the dead spirit rice balls and water are to be offered. Kusa grass must be kept in a holy place and the name and gotra of the dead are to be recited and then sesame water has to be offered with a wish expressed aloud that the water so offered should reach the dead. Then Kusa grass must be kept at the top of the Pretasila in Southward direction and then sesame water together with rice balls is to be offered in the name of the dead. (Excerpt from the book).

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