(PDF) Krishna Homam Sanskrit - DOKUMEN.TIPS (2023)

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    Om Sri MahaaGanapathaye Namah Om Sri Gurubhyo Namah Om RishibhyoNamah

    Sri Krishna Homam Laghu Paddhati (Short Procedure)

    By P.V.R. Narasimha Rao (www.VedicAstrologer.org) Date ofcurrent version: 2009 July 04

    A Word from the author

    My spiritual master Dr Manish Pandit hails from Pune, India andlives in Manchester, UK. The idea of spreading homam in the worldwas revealed to him in a dream a few years ago. He saw eightelevated beings in a dream. They transported him across blue skiesto Chennai, India, where he was shown the big fire that was to belighted in future. They told him to start the work. They assuredhim that homam as a spiritual sadhana was very appropriate in Kaliyuga. As spiritually inclined people have fewer and fewer hours tospend on spiritual sadhana everyday with the progressing Kali yuga,sadhanas that work fast are more relevant. Homam works much fasterthan japam and other spiritual sadhanas. They told him that thepractice of homam would transform into a movement that would reachacross caste, class and race barriers.

    Later, when we were performing a Shata Chandi Homam in the firstweek of March 2006 at the Kalikambal temple in Chennai, he had adarshan of Divine Mother on a Friday and was reassured by Her aboutthe right course of events regarding spreading homam. AMahaganapathi homam manual was published later and several peopleare performing it daily or weekly or monthly.

    When we were in Mayapur, India in May 2008, we were mesmerizedby the spiritual vibrations at Mayapur due to the continuouschanting of mahamantra by so many people there. We received aninspiration to create a manual for a Sri Krishna homam based on themahamantra.

    What is Homam

    Homam is a fire ritual of sacrifice. It is also known as homa orhavan or yajna (yagya) or yajana. In homam, divine presence isinvoked into fire using specific procedures. Then materials aresacrificed into fire, along with sacred chants (mantras). Thesacrifices are supposed to reach gods. It is interesting to notethat fire ritual is an ancient practice and several religionstaught worshipping gods in fire.

    Bhagavad Gita on Fire Sacrifice

    In Bhagavad Gita, Sri Krishna mentions yajna in severalplaces.

    shy}a> ja> s&a> puraevac japit>, Anensiv:yXv< @; vae=iSTvkamxuk. 3-10

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    Translation: Having created beings along with yajna (sacrifice),Prajapati said before, Be happy by this [yajna], may this fulfillyour desires.

    #an! aegan! ih vae deva daSyNte y}aivta>, tEr dan! AdayE_yaeyae ue Sten @v s>. 3-12

    Translation: Nourished by the offerings in the yajna, gods givethe desired results to beings. One who experieces results given bygods without satisfying them with yajna is but a thief.

    Aad viNt Utain pjRNyad AsMv>, y}ad vit pjRNyae y}>kmRsMv>. 3-14

    Translation: All beings are brought into being by food, food isbrought into being by rain, rain is brought into being by yajna andyajna is born of action.

    y}e tpis dane c iSwit> sd #it caeCyte, kmR cEv tdwIRy<sidTyevaixIyte. 17-27

    Translation: Being absorbed in yajna, austerity and charity isgood. Action related to these is not tainted, but remains pure.

    y}dantp>kmR n TyaJy< kayRmev tt!, y}ae dan< tpEvpavnain mnIi;[am!. 18-5

    Translation: Acts of yajna, charity and austerity are never tobe given up. Yajna, charity and austerity are purifying even togreat men.

    Discussion of Bhagavad Gita Teachings

    The sacrifices made by human beings in fire nourish gods andgive them energy to deliver their responsibilities and distributevarious good things to various living beings. Yajna is aresponsibility of a learned person, which one should never give up.Actions like yajna purify those performing them and contribute tothe smooth running of the world and well being of all livingbeings.

    Vishnu sahasra naama stotra taught by Bhishma in Maha Bharatagives yajna as one of the thousand names of Lord Vishnu. LordVishnu Himself manifests as yajna and one can reach Lord Vishnuthrough yajna. When we say that the offerings in yajna reachvarious gods and help them run the universe smoothly, we areessentially saying that the energy of Lord Vishnu is distributed tovarious gods through yajna enabling them to discharge their duties.It is in fact the essence of Lord Vishnu that actually runs theuniverse.

    In Kali yuga, sankirtana yajna has been suggested by ChaitanyaMahaprabhu and Srila Prabhupada as an alternative to the externalfire ritual. If gods name is chanted with devotion while materialobjects are offered to external fire, it is one kind of yajna. Ifone forgets the hustle bustle of daily material life of the fastage for a while and chants gods name with devotion, it is anotherkind of sacrifice to the internal fire. The latter is good too.

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    What burns karmas and purifies one is the fire, whether externalor internal. Because the internal fire is very weak or not evenburning in most people, use of an external fire atleast in thebeginning can kick start ones spiritual sadhana. One who is notable to feed various gods with yajna in the weak internal fire canatleast use a powerful external fire to discharge the duty andslowly increase ones internal fire as a blessing from thatdischarge of duty. As that happens, one will be able to focus andbecome immersed in ones meditation and chanting better.

    When an elevated soul chants prayers, it is not any less than abig external fire. The internal fire burns brightly in such peopleand simple chanting is equivalent to a yajna. Before one reachessuch a stage, yajna with an external fire is useful. However, it isinteresting to note that several elevated souls perform yajnas withexternal fire even though they dont need to. Rishis of ancienttimes performed fire rituals regularly. It may be noted that SrilaPrabhupada, founder of ISKCON (International Sri KrishnaCONsciousness), also performed yajna several times.

    Common Mis-conceptions

    (1) Misconception: Homam is very difficult to perform. It is forexperts only.

    Comment: Not really. Several people who did not know anythingabout how to do any kind of worship conducted homam by themselvesby reading the documents prepared by this author. It is a verysimple practice. People made it complicated over the years. But itis essentially simple.

    (2) Misconception: One must either do a perfect homam or not doany homam at all. A perfect homam takes a very long time.

    Comment: Though one may eat a sumptuous meal on an importantfestival day, one does not necessarily get a lot of energy from it.One gets most of ones energy from the regular dal (lentils) andrice that one eats everyday.

    Though there are complicated versions of homam, it is better todo a simple homam on a regular basis than to do a complicatedversion very rarely. A small half-hour or one-hour homam done on adaily basis is far better for spiritual sadhana than a big annualor half-yearly homam.

    (3) Misconception: If mistakes happen in a homam, theconsequences will be bad.

    Comment: If a homam is performed with a saattwik spirit forsaattwik purposes, there are no risks.

    If you act nice with your parents because you want their money,you have to understand their thinking well, take the advice ofpeople who know them well and act very carefully to get money fromthem. Mistakes can be costly and spoil your goal.

    But, if you act nice with your parents simply because you lovethem and want to show your love, you do not need to be careful. Youjust show your love in whatever way you know. There is no need tofollow anybodys advice strictly and there are no risks.

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    Similarly, you have to be careful if you perform a homam forcertain material goals (such as getting money, attracting someone,destroying someone etc). If you perform a homam just to show yourlove to god, cleanse yourself spiritually and make yourself worthyof divine communion, then there are no risks. The procedure taughtin this document is based on the teachings of rishis and it is safefor anybody to use. Small mistakes will not result in anypunishment.

    In fact, it is expected that everybody who uses this document isinterested in only the second kind of goal, i.e. spiritualcleansing and upliftment.

    (4) Misconception: One not initiated by a guru (master) cannotperform homam or recite certain mantras.

    Comment: If one receives a mantra or a procedure from the mouthof a master, it is analogous to a millionaire opening a bankaccount in his sons name with a high starting balance. The son islucky, as he is starting off with a big balance. Similarly, some ofthe siddhi (attainment) the master has in the mantra or procedureis transferred to the disciple even as (s)he starts out.

    If one does not receive a mantra or a procedure from the mouthof a master, it is analogous to starting off with a zero bankbalance. While it is useful to start off with a positive balance,it is neither necessary nor sufficient. There are sons ofmillionaires who used up the millions earned by parents and reducedthem to zero, while there are some self-made men who made millionspurely with self-effort. Similarly, one taught by the greatest gurucan fall while one not taught by a guru can reach the ultimate.While it is desirable to have a guru, it is by no meanscompulsory.

    If one is the kind who needs to have a guru figure behind everymantra or procedure, one can think of the author and/or hisspiritual master, Dr Manish Pandit from Pune, India (currentlyresiding in Birmingham, UK) as the guru for this homamprocedure.

    (5) Misconception: Those who are not learned in Veda cannotrecite Veda mantras and perform homam based on Veda mantras.

    Comment: Jnaneshwar was a 12th century master. He was a greatKrishna devotee. When he was asked to not recite Veda by a councilof erudite scholars, as he was not formally qualified, he repliedthat every being had a right to recite Veda. When he startedreciting, they tried to shut his mouth. Then, a buffalo standingnext to him recited Veda! The scholars begged his pardon andcorrected their narrow-minded attitude.

    Many great souls like him taught that Veda could be recited byanyone. One engaged in tantric practices that serve specificpurposes and give specific siddhis (attainments) need to be afraidof side effects and punishments for mistakes, but mantras from Vedawere taught by great rishis for the highest purpose ofself-realization. One reciting them need not be afraid of any sideeffects. Veda mantras are saattwik, self-correcting and ultimatelyleading to self-realization.

    Those who have an affinity to tantric practices should not bediscouraged from learning and using them, but those who appreciatethe teachings of rishis must be encouraged to recite Veda

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    mantras and perform homam based on Veda mantras. The key is tohave an attitude of submission and a desire for nothing other thanself-realization and to do homam without any expectationswhatsoever. Then there are no risks.

    The procedure taught in this document contains just a few Vedamantras, which are not very difficult to pronounce.

    (6) Misconception: Those who are not born in a Brahmin familycannot perform homam.

    Comment: Ones varna (caste) is not to be determined solely fromthe family one is born in. There are examples of men born toparents belonging to various castes performing tapascharya andbecoming rishis. Maharshi Viswamitra, who taught the SavitruGayatri mantra, was a kshatriya by birth. Maharshi Valmiki, whotaught Brahma Jnana to Maharshi Bharadwaja, was a shoodra bybirth.

    One who has affinity to knowledge is a Brahmin (scholar). Onewho has affinity to power and authority is a kshatriya (warrior).One who has affinity to money is a vaisya (trader). One who hasaffinity to carnal pleasures is a shoodra (worker). If a personborn in a Brahmin family is after money, he becomes a vaisya andnot a Brahmin. On the other hand, if a person born in a vaisyafamily desires nothing but knowledge and self-realization, heautomatically becomes a Brahmin and very fit to perform homam.

    Irrespective of the caste of birth, one who is interested inknowledge (especially knowledge of self) and one whose interest inpower, money and pleasures is decaying is fit to perform homam.

    (7) Misconception: Women cannot perform homam.

    Comment: There is a big difference between men and women when itcomes to the gross body. But, at the level of subtle body or causalbody, there is no difference based on gender. All spiritualpractices operate mainly at the subtle and causal level. So, itmakes no sense to have a total ban on women performing homam.

    However, there are some practical reasons behind the biases oftradition. Though there are no differences based on gender in thesubtle body, the differences at the gross body level can come intoplay in the initial stages. However, for a homam like Sri Krishnahomam, one cannot think of a valid reason to ban women. If homamcan be avoided during the monthly period time, it issufficient.

    (8) Misconception: Homam is just like meditation. It is not anybetter. It does not really make any difference.

    Comment: The proof of the pudding is in eating it. If one triesperforming a homam to the best of ones ability on a daily basis fora few months, one will know what homam can do! After doing homamfor several months, one will find that all other sadhanas one doesbecome more effective as a result of homam.

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    (9) Misconception: One should get a priest to do homam and notdo it oneself.

    Comment: Let us revisit a previous analogy. If one wants to benice to ones parents to get their money, one may engage someone whowill act on ones behalf to get the money of parents. But, if onessole purpose is to just love ones parents and show that love, it isbetter to do it directly than to engage other people.

    (10) Misconception: Before doing homam with any mantra, one mustdo japam of that mantra by a count that is ten times the homamcount. For example, one must do japam by a count of 10,000 beforeone does homam by a count of 1,000.

    Comment: This convention is not without reason. The true meaningof this convention is that homam is ten times more powerful thanjapam. If one does a mantra 1,000 in a homam, it is equivalent todoing the mantra 10,000 in japam. If one wants, one can offer themantra entirely in external fire and there is no need to do anyjapam before doing homam.

    All thumb rules and conventions have exceptions. If a rishi witha very strong internal fire does dhyanam, it is equivalent to ahomam and the ten times rule does not apply. However, for mostnormal people, homam is ten times more powerful than japam. Thebottomline is that the strength and the purity of the medium thataccommodates the presence of the deity who receives the mantra willdecide the effectiveness of the mantra.

    About This Document

    This document describes a short procedure for performing SriKrishna homam, which takes 30-45 minutes. This document is forthose who are interested in performing Sri Krishna homam bythemselves every day or week or month. This document is preparedbased on a Bhagavad Gita Homam procedure taught in tradition. Theprocedure taught here is simple enough to do daily and yet retainsall the important steps in a full-fledged traditional Vedic homam.Those who are very uncomfortable with Sanskrita and want an evensimpler procedure with fewer mantras may refer to Appendix A for asuper-short procedure with bare minimum mantras.

    One should consult ones elders and gurus and decide whether oneis allowed to perform a homam or not. If one thinks one is allowedto do homam and is interested in doing homam on a regular basis butdoes not know how to do it, then one can use this document to learnone way to do it. If ones gurus have taught one a differentprocedure, one may use the procedure taught by ones gurus. Thisdocument is for the benefit of those who do not know any procedureand want to learn some procedure to do homam. Those who learnt aslightly different procedure from the previous versions of thisdocument need not worry and either follow what they have alreadylearnt or switch to the procedure in this document.

    Correct Attitude

    While it is good to follow the procedure faithfully, it is evenmore important to surrender oneself to god, leave ego and identifyones self with the deity in the fire when performing the homam. Ifthat is there, all other minor errors will have no negative effect.If that is not there, even an

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    impeccably performed homam will not have any tangible effect.Like mentioned earlier, the goal is to melt ego (I-ness or sense ofself) and create a vacuum within oneself, so that the deity canfill it. Complete devotion, single-minded focus ondeity/mantra/procedure and minimization of the activity of body andmind can help one achieve that eventually.

    If one has an over-active mind, doing pranayama before homam canbe useful. The time around sunrise in the morning is a particularlyconducive to a pleasant Sri Krishna homam.

    Materials Needed

    Must have

    One homa kundam1 (a copper container with preferably a squareshaped base). If a homa kundam is not available, one can dig asquare shaped pit in the ground (with 1-2 foot sides and half toone foot deep) and arrange a few layers of bricks around thepit.

    Dry coconut halves (available in Indian stores) or wood (forburning) Ghee (clarified butter) from cows milk. It is available inIndian stores. If unable to find, just

    get some butter and melt it in low heat. After it melts, someblack stuff will separate from the melted liquid. Filter out theblack deposit and use the liquid. It will solidify after a time.Before the homam, melt it again and use it.

    A wooden spoon/ladle to put ghee into the fire Some akshatas.Those can be made by mixing raw (uncooked) white (or brown) ricegrains

    with a drop of sesame oil (or some other oil) and a pinch ofturmeric powder. Instead of turmeric powder, one can also usevermilion (kumkum) powder used for the dot on the forehead.

    A small lamp, consisting of a wick that can be lit in sesameoil/ghee. A candle can also be used as an alternative, though it isbetter to burn ghee or sesame oil than wax.

    A match box to light fire One tumbler or cup to store water. Itshould preferably be made of silver or copper or clay. If

    unavailable, you may use steel or glass. One spoon (preferablysilver or copper) Some water


    A small idol of Krishna or Vishnu. If you have none, use ametallic coin or any metallic object. Actually, you can do withoutany idol and just invoke Sri Krishna in fire.

    A mixture of various auspicious materials known as the havansamagri (available in India stores), if possible.

    Some sandalwood powder, turmeric powder and kumkum (vermilion)powder Some flowers or flower petals Some sesame seeds, somemamra/murmura (puffed white rice), some nuts, some mildly

    popped corn and other materials that can be offered in fire.Small fruits are also fine. Honey

    1 If in India, search for Havan Kund onhttp://shopping.rediff.com. If in US, search for Kund on


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    can also be used. All these are optional. The absolute minimumneeded is coconut pieces and ghee.

    Some darbhas (dried blades of sacred grass). Check with a localtemple priest to find out how to procure them. If darbhas areunavailable, you may think of creative alternatives. For example,find some other dry grass or dry leaves or just thin twigs and prayto your ishta devata (favorite deity) before the homam to make themacceptable.

    An incense stick (agarbatti) if available and a holder to stickit to (a banana can be used instead)

    Camphor and a container or plate for lighting camphor andoffering haarati Some food that you can offer to god. Eggs, meatand seafood should not be used in that food.

    In fact, do not eat eggs, meat and seafood on the day of homam.Onion, garlic, strong spices and too much of chillies should alsobe avoided in the food cooked for God. Fruits are also fine. Justsugar or brown sugar or rock candy sugar or jaggery can be offeredto god too. When using sugar, please note that the normal whiterefined sugar used these days has bone ash in it. Brown sugar,vegetarian sugar or jaggery are to be prefered.

    Some milk, if available.

    Preparation Before Homam

    (1) Instead of arranging homa kundam directly on the floor,place a wood plank or something on the floor, wrapped with aluminumfoil (or some such thing), and put 4 bricks of the same height onit and place the homa kundam on the bricks. Thus, there is some airand a wooden plank under the homa kundam and the floor does not getheated up.

    (2) If you want easy cleaning, place some aluminum foils on thefloor all around the plank containing homa kundam. If ghee orsomething is spilled in that area, it is easy to clean.

    (3) If you want, you can also cover the interior of homa kundamwith some aluminum foils, so that it is easy to clean.

    (4) Make some food items to offer to god. You can just use rocksugar candy or raisins or dates or fruits or jaggery also. Pleasesee the notes in the previous section on this.

    (5) Cook a little plain white rice. I put a few grains of riceand a little water in a small container and put it in microwaveoven before my homam and cooked rice is ready at the end when Ineed it. If this is not possible, take a banana or apple or someother fruit and make it into 6 slices.

    (6) Fill water in the tumbler/cup and place the spoon in it. (7)Make a seat for yourself in front of the homa kundam. Ideally youshould be facing east,

    i.e. homa kundam should be on the east from you. On the east ofthe homa kundam, place a small plate or a wooden plank, make a pileof some rice grains on it and place the idol (or a metal/clayobject such as a coin) on it. You can decorate based on yourability and taste. An idol is optional. You can worship Sri Krishnadirectly in fire.

    (8) From the middle of the western edge of the homam kundam,draw two parallel red lines with kumkum (vermilion) powder towardsyour seat. They should go east-west and connect homa kundam to yourseat. Melt the ghee and place the bowl containing it on thoselines.

    (9) Cut dry coconuts into small pieces. Pieces of 1 inch x 1inch size are useful. (10) Important: Do not consume any foodwithin 3-4 hours before the homam (atleast one hour).

    Evacuate the bowels before homam and take bath. Stomach shouldbe empty during a homam for the best experience.

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    Homam Procedure

    Anujnaa (Permission)

    Before starting the homam, think in your mind of Mother Earthwho is bearing you, Lord Ganesha who removes obstacles, your ishtadevata (favorite deity), your parents, the rishis of your gothra(if you know them), all the rishis and all your gurus. Then say thefollowing, while mentally requesting all the gods to co-operatewith your homam.

    ` \/(aSm? h/VyEnRm?saep/s*?, im/< de/v< im?/xey

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    Praanaayaamam (restraining the life force)

    Take some akshatas (see Materials Needed for a description ofhow to make them) in the the left palm, place the left palm on theleft lap, hold the nostrils with the right hand and dopraanaayaamam. Place the little finger and ring finger on the leftnostril and thumb on the right nostril. Close the left nostril,open the right nostril by releasing the thumb and say the Gayatrimantra mentally while gently breathing in through the right nostril(without making any breathing sound). If you dont know the Gayatrimantra, use one of the following mantras:

    ` nmae gvte vasudevay, ` nmiZzvay, ` g< g[ptye nm>,

    After saying the mantra once, close the right nostril with thethumb and say the mantra once more while retaining the airpreviously breathed in. Then open the left nostril by relaxing thelittle and ring fingers and say the mantra for the third time whilebreathing out through the left nostril. When done, say the mantraonce more, while breathing in through the left nostril. Then closethe left nostril with little and ring fingers and say the mantrafor the fifth time while retaining the air previously breathed in.Then release the thumb and say the mantra for the sixth time whilebreathing out through the right nostril. While reading the mantraall the six times, contemplate the formless supreme Brahman(supreme soul of the entire universe) that fills each being of thisuniverse and also the air being breathed in and out. If you want,you can imagine a specific form (such as your ishta devata) alsoand imagine that your ishta devata fills the entire universe. Ifyou want, you can repeat the above sequence as many times as youcomfortably can.

    Sankalpam (taking the vow)

    Now, declare your intention of doing a homam to please SriKrishna. Transfer the akshatas to the right hand, place the openleft palm (empty) on right lap, place the closed right palmcontaining akshatas on the left palm. Then say the following, whilementally thinking that you are going to do a homa to the best ofyour ability, to please Sri Krishna.

    ` mmaepa smSt irt]yara I prmer ITywRm! I k:[ sad is(wRm! A*zuidne zumuteR I k:[ haemkmR ywazi kir:ye,

    Then leave the akshatas from your hand in front of the homakundam or the idol and sprinkle a little bit of water on the palms.Now light the ghee/oil lamp.

    Kalasa Suddhi (water purification)

    When you are doing a long version of the homam, you canestablish a kalasam in the northeastern side of the homa kundam andinvoke Varuna in it and do shodasopachaara pooja to Varuna and readPunyaaha Vaachanam (Pavamana Sooktam). For a short homam, you canjust do the following.

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    Place a few akshatas and a flower (if available) in the tumblercontaining water. If you can, put dhenu mudra (else, dont worry).Say the following syllable 11 times to purify the water.


    Now read the following and think that auspicious essence ofvarious rivers of the world is entering the water in thetumbler.

    g, ` ymay nm>, ` saemay nm>, ` ay nm>, ` iv:[ve nm>,` #Nay nm>,

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    Figure 1

    Agni Pratishthaapana (fire installation)

    Take a darbha. Place it inside the homa kundam (on the base),with the tip of the darbha facing east and the other end facingwest. Take another darbha. Place it inside, with the tip of thedarbha facing north and the other end facing south.

    Take a piece of camphor, light it from the lamp and place it inthe middle of the homa kundam, while saying:

    ` UuRvSsuvraem!

    Place one or more dry coconut pieces (or a log/twig/piece ofwood) above the burning camphor and make sure that it catches fire.Next pray to the fire god using the following mantra from RigVeda.It requests the fire god to keep an inauspicious form of firecalled kravyaada and carry the offerings to gods through theauspicious form of fire called jaatavedas.

    /Vyad?m/i< ih?[aeim /r< y/mra}ae gCDtu irva/h>,#/hEvayimt?rae ja/tveda de/ve_yae h/Vy< v?htu ja/nn!,

    Now we have to do samskara (refinement) to the fire. Pour 8drops of ghee in the fire while saying the following mantra 8times.

    ` UuRv/Ssuv/> Svaha,

    Take 2 or more darbhas (or twigs). Place them outside the homakundam, along the eastern boundary. The tips should be facing northand the other end facing south. Then take another 2 or more darbhasand place them on the southern boundary, with tips facing east andthe other end facing west. Then take 2 or more darbhas and placethem on the western boundary, with tips facing north. Then take 2or more darbhas and place them on the northern boundary, withtips

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    facing east. If you do homam on a regular basis, you can leavethese darbhas/twigs around the homa kundam there is no need to dothis step every time.

    Take some water with the spoon and sprinkle it outside the homakundam, on its four boundaries while reading the following 4mantras. The order and direction of sprinkling is shown in Figure2. For example, first sprinkle water from the southwestern cornerto the southeastern corner, as shown by the arrow marked 1. Thenfollow other arrows marked as 2, 3 and 4.

    Aid/te=nu?mNySv, Anu?m/te=nu?mNySv, sr?Sv/te=nu?mNySv, devsiv/t> su?v,

    Figure 2

    Now pray to Agni (fire god) with the following mantra:

    c/Tvair/ z& /idzae nu/ svaR/> pUvaeR? ih ja/t> s %/geR? A/Nt>, s iv/jay?man> s jin/:yma?[> Ty/'muoaiStitiv/tae?muo>, a'muoae dev, he Ae, mmaimuoae v,

    Now think within your mind of Lord Ganesha, your ishta devata(favorite deity), rishis of your gotra (if you know them), allrishis, your gurus, various gods and other beings of thisuniverse.

    Dikpaalaka Pooja (worshipping the rulers of directions)

    Now, take some akshatas and also some flowers (if available) andoffer them to the rulers of directions. Starting with the easternedge of the homa kundam, go clockwise (i.e. east, southeast,

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    south, southwest etc) and offer akshatas and flowers in theeight directions. You can place them on the edges of the homakundam. After the eight directions, offerings are made to Brahma(ruler of the upward direction) in the middle of northeast and eastand to Sesha (ruler of the downward direction) in the middle ofsouthwest and west.

    Then offer akshatas and flowers to Agni in the middle of thehoma kundam. Finally, touch your heart and offer respect to theself (soul). For the 8+2+1+1=12 offerings, say the following 12mantras:

    ` #Nay nm>, ` Aye nm>, ` ymay nm>, ` in\Rtye nm>, `v[ay nm>, ` vayve nm>, ` saemay nm>, ` $zanay nm>, ` [enm>, ` ze;ay nm>, ` Aye nm>, ` AaTmne nm>,

    Poorvaangam (preliminary offerings)

    Now hold the wooden spoon/ladle pointing from northwest towardssoutheast and offer a ghee drop in the fire for Prajapati(progenitor of all beings), with the following mantra.

    ` japtye Svaha, japty #d< n mm,

    Now hold the wooden spoon/ladle pointing from southwest towardsnortheast and offer a ghee drop in the fire for Indra (ruler ofgods), with the following mantra.

    ` #Nay Svaha, #Nayed< n mm,

    Offer a little ghee to Agni (fire god) in the middle of the firewith the following mantra:

    ` Aye Svaha, Ay #d< n mm,

    Then offer a little ghee to Soma (god of nourishment andwell-being) in the upper half of the northern side of the homakundam with the following mantra:

    ` saemay Svaha, saemayed< n mm,

    Now, we have to offer a forgiveness offering to Prajapati againto request his forgiveness for all the mistakes that happened inthe homa upto this point, with the following mantra:


  • 15

    After making an offering to the basic gods as shown above, onecan invoke Ganesha in the fire. After the above preliminaryofferings and before invoking Ganesha, one can also make offeringsto rishis. One can, for example, make offerings to the rishis ofones lineage. It is optional.

    Quick Homam for Mahaganapathi

    Before calling the main deity of homam (Sri Krishna) into fire,a quick pooja of Mahaganapathi in fire needs to be done for theremoval of obstacles. Mahaganapathi can be invoked in fire whilechanting the following.

    ` g< g[ptye nm>, Asu?nI te/ pun?r/Smasu/ c]u>/ pun?>a/[im/h nae? deih/ aeg

  • 16

    v< Am&taTmne nm>, nEve*< smpRyaim,

    Say the following and offer some akshatas to Mahaganapathi inthe fire. This mantra means that we are offering all services toHim.

    s< svaRTmne nm>, svaeRpcaran! smpRyaim,

    Now say the following offer ghee (or other allowed materialsmentioned at the beginning) into fire for Mahaganapathi. Repeatthat 4 or 8 or 12 times.

    ` g< g[ptye nm> Svaha,

    Praana Pratishthaapanaa (invocation of main deity)

    Now we have to invoke the deity in the idol and the fire. If youknow how to do anganyaasam and karanyaasam, do it while saying thefollowing. Otherwise, just read the following.

    ASy I a[itapn m \GyjuSsamawvaRi[ DNdais I k:[ prmaTma devta,a< bIj, aE< kIlk, < mXyma_ya< nm>, E<Anaimka_ya< nm>, aE< kinikaa< nm>, > krtlkrp&a_ya< nm>, a< dyay nm>, I izrse Svaha, <izoayE v;q, E< kvcay Aay )q, UuRvSsuvraeimit idGb,

    Xyan< - vsudevsut< dev< k

  • 17

    Aavaihtae v, Swaiptae v, siihtae v, siae v, Avk, gNx<smpRyaim,

    Say the following and offer a flower (or a flower petal) to SriKrishna in the fire and the idol.

    h< AakazaTmne nm>, pu:p< smpRyaim,

    Say the following and offer dhoopam (incense) to Sri Krishna inthe fire and the idol. Light the tip of the incense stick, let thefire burn brightly and then extinguish the fire. There should be nofire on the stick but smoke coming from the burning tip. Show thesmoke to the fire in the homa kundam.

    y< vaYvaTmne nm>, xUp< Aaapyaim,

    Say the following and show the deepam (light/lamp) to SriKrishna in the fire and the idol.

    r< AGNyaTmne nm>, dIp< dzRyaim,

    Say the following and offer some food to Sri Krishna in the fireand the idol. You can use cooked food or a fruit or jaggery orsugar. Show it to the fire and idol and offer a little bit into thefire.

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    If you made only one food item, it is a good idea to offer it atthe end of the homam. There will be a naivedyam (food offering)again. Offer something else for now. The offering at the end is themain one.

    v< Am&taTmne nm>, nEve*< smpRyaim,

    Say the following and offer some akshatas to Sri Krishna in thefire and the idol. This mantra means that we are offering allservices to Him.

    s< svaRTmne nm>, svaeRpcaran! smpRyaim,

    Parivaara Devata Aahutis (offerings to associates)

    If you are in a hurry, make one offering of ghee with thefollowing to the associates of Sri Krishna.

    ` raxaid_y> I k:[ pirvar devta_y> Svaha,

    If you have more time, read the following instead and make anoffering of ghee whenever you encounter svaahaa (Svaha).

    ` raxayE Svaha, ` iKm{yE Svaha, ` sTyamayE Svaha, ` jaMbvTyESvaha, ` naijTyE Svaha, ` imivNdayE Svaha, ` kaiN*E Svaha, ` lm[ayESvaha, ` suzIlayE Svaha, ` devKyE Svaha, ` vsudevay Svaha, `yzaedayE Svaha, ` nNday Svaha, ` suayE Svaha, ` blay Svaha, `gaepe_y> Svaha, ` gaepI_y> Svaha, ` vasudevay Svaha, ` s

  • 19


    When making the last offering with a mantra (i.e. you are goingto stop that mantra after this offering and switch to a differentmantra), you add the following instead of the above:


    The offering can be a drop of ghee or sesame seeds ormurmura/mamra (puffed white rice) or havan samagri or small drycoconut pieces or small pieces of darbha. If you are doing homam ona big scale with a big fire, you can even put banana slices, fullcoconuts, various fruits, nuts (cashews, almonds etc), dates,raisins, sugar cane pieces, several sweets and snacks etc. But, ifyou are doing on a small scale with a small fire, stick to sesameseeds, dry coconut pieces, puffed white rice and ghee drops. At anycost, avoid spicy substances like any kind of pepper, cinnamon,cloves etc and products containing eggs, meat etc. In general,sweet substances are better. Just offering ghee when you do nothave any other substances is also fine.

    The following mantras of Sri Krishna may be used. But you canreally use any mantra you like. Read a mantra several times beforemoving onto a different mantra. It is advisable to pick any onemantra you like the most and repeat it as many times as you can,instead of doing a little bit of several mantras. If one wantswater, one should dig deep in one place instead of digging a littlein ten places. The 1st one is mahamantra as taught by SrilaPrabhupada in ISKCON, just as Valmiki was taught raama mantra asmaraa. The 2nd one is another variation of mahamantra as given inscriptures. The 3rd one is the vijaya mantra. The 4th one is apowerful beejaakshara mantra. The 5th one is a very simplebeejaakshara mantra. The 6th one is the powerful dwadasaaksharimantra. The 7th one is a [nichrud-]Gaayatri mantra. All thesemantras are powerful and pick the one you are most attracted to andstick to it in your homam.

    ` hre k:[ hre k:[ k:[ k:[ hre hre, hre ram hre ram ram ram hrehre. Svaha, ` hre ram hre ram ram ram hre hre, hre k:[ hre k:[ k:[k:[ hre hre. Svaha, ` I ram jy ram jy jy ram, I k:[ jy k:[ jy jyk:[, Svaha, ` I k:[ay gaeivNday gaepIjn vay Svaha, ` I k:[aynm>, Svaha, ` nmae gvte vasudevay, Svaha, ` va/su/de/vay?iv/he?, devkI pu/ay? xImih, t>? k:[> cae/dyat!, Svaha,

    Another alternative to the above mantras is to chantKrishnaashtakam. Repeat the following 8 verses as many times as youwant, with offerings at each svaahaa (Svaha).

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    vsudev sut< dev< k

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    ` ja?pte/ n Tvde/taNy/Nyae iva? ja/tain/ pir/ ta b?Uv,yTka?maSte ju/mStae? AStu v?y Sya?m/ pt?yae ryI/[am!, Svaha, japty#d< n mm. ` U> Svaha, Ay #d< n mm. ` uv>/ Svaha, vayv#d< n mm. ` suv>/ Svaha, sUyaRyed< n mm. yd?Sy/kmR/[ae=TyrI?irc, Ai/aeta /tu/ivi?ja/nn!, yij?ae de/van! \/tu/zaey?jait/, Svaha, Ay #d< n mm.

    Next, three offerings are made to the fire god, wind god and sungod, the controllers of the three worlds. Read the following andoffer a drop of the ghee in the fire at each swaahaa.

    ` U> Svaha, Ay #d< n mm. ` uv>/ Svaha, vayv #d< nmm. ` suv>/ Svaha, sUyaRyed< n mm.

    One final offering to Prajapati is made to beg for forgivenessfor various mistakes made in the homam, with respect topronunciation, actions, procedure, devotion, materials used etc.Read the following and offer of drop of ghee.

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    AiSmn! haemkmRi[ mXye s/ Svaha, vayv #d< n mm. ` suv>/Svaha, sUyaRyed< n mm. ` UuRv/Ssuv>/ Svaha, japty #d< nmm. ` I iv:[?ve/ Svaha, iv:[ve prmaTmn #d< n mm. ` nmae /ay?pzu/pt?ye/ Svaha, ay pzupty #d< n mm.

    Suddhaanna Bali (sacrifice of pure rice)

    Now, we have to offer bali (sacrifice to other associatedbeings). Get the cooked white rice (or banana slices or some otherfruit slices or raisins). Just place a small token amount as bali.You need to place bali in six different places outside the homakundam. First, place it on the east of the homa kundam. Then on thewest, then on the north, then on the south and finally two more onthe east (a little north to the previous bali(s) placed in theeast). The order and positions can be found in Figure 3. Whileoffering balis in six places, the following sentence can besaid:

    ` pa;Rde_yae nm>, bil< smpRyaim,

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    Figure 3

    The rice remaining after offering balis should be thrown awayand not consumed. If cooked rice is not available, small bananaslices or some other fruit slices can be used. Again, any fruitpieces left over after bali should be thrown away and notconsumed.

    Vasordhaaraa (stream of excellence)

    Take a little ghee into the ladle and pour it slowly on theburning dry coconut pieces in the homa kundam while reading thethird verse from Rudra Chamakam. It is given below.

    Dont pour too much ghee if you dont want much smoke. Just takeone teaspoonful of ghee in the wooden ladle and manage with itslowly. This ghee should be just enough to make the pieces burnwell so that poornaahuti (about to be offered) burns well.

    ` z< c? me/ my? me i/y< c? me=nuka/m? me/ kam? me saEmn/s?me /< c? me/ ey? me/ vSy? me/ yz? me/ g? me/ iv?[< c me y/Ntac? me x/taR c? me/ ]em? me/ x&it? me/ iv

  • 24

    offered earlier in it. If you do a small homam everyday in awestern country and need to minimize the smoke, you may put just asmall coconut piece as poornaahuti. If you are doing homam in a bigfirepit that is dug in ground, you may want to experiment with aregular full coconut that has little water. It is a more accuraterepresentation of the ego of a normal person.

    Place the poornaahuti on the wooden ladle, say the mantra belowand then place the poornaahuti in fire carefully with hand (if youdrop it on a small fire from the wooden ladle, it can extinguishthe fire and also loose materials can spill everywhere in the homakundam).

    ` pU/[aR/itmu?/ma< ju?haeit, sv/ vE pU [aR/it>,svR?me/vaae?it, Awae? #/y< vE pU [aR/it>, A/Syame/v it?itit,` pU[R/md>/ pU[R/imd s \;?ySs/> xam? i/yai[?, s/ haea s/xaTva? y/j/iNt/s/yaenI/rap&?[Sva "&/te/n/ Svaha, Aye svt#d< n mm.

    Take some water in a spoon and sprinkle it around the homakumdam as shown in Figure 2. This is similar to what we did at thebeginning, but the mantras to say are slightly different. Insteadof the four mantras used earlier, use the following four mantraswhen sprinkling water along the four arrows marked as 1, 2, 3 and 4in Figure 2:

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    Aid/te=Nv?m, Anu?m/te=Nv?m, sr?Sv/te=Nv?m, dev? sivt>/asa?vI>,

    The ritual of homam cleanses one internally. The powerful divinepresence in the fire has a great ability to cleanse one.Especially, a sincerely offered poornaahuti creates a lot ofpositive energy as it burns. One can take advantage of it bymeditating in front of the fire as the poornaahuti burns. The timewhen the poornaahuti burns is the best time to meditate.

    Sit still with a straight back in front of the fire andmeditate. Make sure that the back is erect and yet not too tight.Make sure that the neck and head are also erect. Close the eyes,imagine your favorite deity in a form you like and meditate on thatform with your favorite mantra. It can be the mantra with which youdid homam. Try to forget about the your body and what you are doingand get into the mantra fully. Think that Sri Krishna is the onlyone that exists and the whole universe is his play. Think that allbeings and all objects of this world are expressions of SriKrishnas play. Think that Sri Krishna is the true Doer of allactions by all beings of this world. Your chances of losingconsciousness of your body and immersing in the mantra fully arethe maximum at this point of time than any other! Take advantageand meditate for atleast 5-10 minutes with maximum focus now.Consider this an essential part of the homam.


    Now, take the darbhas placed at the beginning outside the homakundam on the western side (or new darbhas, if you did not placeany darbhas along the boundaries due to lack of darbhas), apply alittle ghee to them and place the tips in fire. When they catchfire, remove them from the fire, place them in a container and letthe whole darbhas burn. The black ash you get is called rakshaa(protection). At the end of the homam, you can apply a littlerakshaa to the forehead of the idol and then a little to your ownforehead and the foreheads of others. This is believed to protectfrom evil forces. You can store the rakshaa for future use onimportant occasions.

    If your fire is too small and does not last till this point, youmay consider taking rakshaa before meditation.

    It is not necessary to take raksha. One can skip this step.Alternately, one can skip now and later mix the ashes of thematerials burnt in the homa kundam with ghee and use that asrakshaa.

    Udvaasana (good bye)

    Take a couple of darbhas in your right hand and a couple moredarbhas with your left hand. Take some flowers or akshatas also ifavailable. Hold the darbhas with the tips facing away from you andthe bases in your hands. Now touch the two sides of the homakundamwith the darbhas in the two hands. Then touch the idol with thosedarbhas and leave the akshatas and flowers on the god. Imagine thatthe energy from the homakundam has been transferred into the idol.To simplify this, you can also place your fists containing a fewakshatas on top of the northern and southern sides of homa kundamand then deposit the akshatas in those fists at the feet of theidol.

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    Say the following and show your heart with your hands. Imaginethat Sri Mahaganapathi has exited the fire and came back into yourheart.

    ASmade> Imhag[pit< ywaSwan< itapyaim,

    Say the following and show your heart with your hands. Imaginethat Sri Krishna has exited the fire and the idol and came backinto your heart.

    ASmaNmUteR Ae I k:[< ywaSwan< itapyaim,

    Now, we have to say goodbye to the fire god too. Say thefollowing and bow to the fire god.

    Ae/ ny? supwa? ra/ye A/Sman! ivain? dev v/yuna?in iv/an!,yu/yaeXy?Smu?ra/[menae/ Uiya

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    If you used a kalasam (water pot) in addition to an idol toinvoke the god, you can take a bath with the water in the kalasam.Pour the water on yourself after you finish your bath, while sayinga mantra of Sri Krishna. After pouring that water on yourself, dontpour any more regular water. The water from kalasam should be thelast water you pour on yourself in the bath. In other words, youshould absorb the energy in that water for a while.

    It is possible to put a kalasam and use it everyday withoutchanging water. One may change the water every weekend or on everyAshtami or Ekadasi day and take bath with the old water.

    :: Sarvam Sri Krishnarapanamastu :: :: Om Shaantih ShaantihShaantih ::

    Appendix A: Super-short Homam (minimum mantras)

    For those who are uncomfortable with Sanskrita and yet want toperform homam, the procedure given in this document may still bedifficult. For such people, I can recommend a much shorterprocedure. It is hoped that those who start with this super-shorthomam will eventually make an effort to switch to the mainprocedure given in this document, after they get some practice andbecome comfortable with mantras in Sanskrita.

    Mantras offered to a deity in fire are powerful irrespective ofthe procedure used. Instead of not doing homam at all, it is betterto do this super-short homam.

    This appendix will describe a super-short procedure verybriefly. If some details are unclear, please contextualize them byreading the rest of the document. The Sanskrita mantras areminimized in this super-short procedure.

    Preliminary Procedure

    Think in your mind of Mother Earth, Lord Ganesha, Sri Krishna,your parents, rishis of your lineage (if you know them), all rishisand all gods. You can use a language that you are comfortable with(e.g. English or Hindi or Russian) and say something in anintuitive way to remember all of them.

    Take a tumbler or glass of water. Take three spoonfuls of waterfrom the tumbler and drink them while saying: This is for Keshava(kezv), This is for Naaraayana (naray[) and This is for Maadhava(maxv).

    With akshatas in hand, pray to Ganesha: O Ganesha (g[ez)! Pleaseremove obstacles from my homam. Do praanaayaama (see the section onit in the main document), possibly with the Om sound or a mantragiven earlier.

    Now take a vow: I shall now perform a homam to the best of myability, for the pleasure of Lord Krishna (k:[).

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    Leave the akshatas in front of the idol or homa kundam.

    Early Offerings

    Light a lamp. Put some akshatas in the water tumbler and say vam(v Svaha,

    Qucik Worship of Ganesha in Fire

    Say O Ganesha (g[ez), please come into this fire. Say thefollowing while showing the fire with folded palms (as though youare telling someone come here):

    Aavaihtae v, Swaiptae v,

  • 29

    Put some akshatas in the fire and say O Ganesha (g[ez), pleasebe pleased with these services from me. Now repeat the followingmantra of Ganesha 4 times with an offering of ghee or somethingelse.

    ` g< g[ptye nm>, Svaha,

    Main Homam of Sri Krishna

    Say O Lord Krishna (k:[), please come into this fire. Say thefollowing while showing the fire with folded palms (as though youare telling someone come here):

    Aavaihtae v, Swaiptae v,

    Put some akshatas in the fire and say O Lord Krishna (k:[),please be pleased with these services from me.

    Now repeat the mantras of Krishna that you know 4 or 8 or 12 or21 or 28 or 108 or 1008 times. Some mantras are suggested in themain document (see pages 21-22 before). At a minimum, do thefollowing simple mantra as many times as you can.

    ` I k:[ay nm>, Svaha,

    Each time you say this, offer ghee or akshatas or sesame seedsor some other materials described earlier in this document in thefire. If you do the above mantra many times and not do any othermantras, it is acceptable.

    At the end of the offerings, take some food you cooked (orfruit), show it to the fire and say O Lord Krishna (k:[), pleaseaccept this and throw a small bit into fire. Then stand up and goaround the homa kundam once or 3 times. If someone looks at youfrom the roof or from the sky, it should look like you are goingaround the homa kundam in clockwise direction. At the end, you canbow in front of the fire. Finally sit down in front of the fire inyour original place.

    Final Offerings

    Say the following lines and offer a drop of ghee in the fireafter each line:

    ` U> Svaha, ` uv> Svaha,

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    ` suv> Svaha, ` UuRvSsuv> Svaha, ` iv:[ve Svaha, ` aySvaha,

    At the end, sprinkle a little water on your right hand.

    If it is possible, now offer six chunks of cooked white rice orfruit slices in the six places shown in Figure 3, while sayingthese are for the associates of Lord Krishna (k:[). Otherwise, youmay skip this step.


    While saying Om, pour a stream of ghee from the spoon into thefire. When the fire becomes big, you can offer poornaahuti.

    Please read the section on poornaahuti in the main document forthe description of materials needed, meaning of poornaahuti and thespirit to be followed. Instead of the mantras in the main document,just say the following:

    ` I k:[ay pU[aRit< smpRyaim,

    Then drop the full coconut or half coconut or coconut piece infire. Offer one more drop of ghee while saying:

    ` Aye svte Svaha,

    Now, meditate with any mantra you like for 5-10 minutes as thepoornaahuti burns. For some useful tips, please refer to the maindocument.

    At the end of the meditation, show your heart with your handsand say O Ganesha (g[ez) and O Lord Krishna (k:[), please come backinto my heart. Also, thank the fire god mentally for hisco-operation in the ritual. Then say:

    svRm! I k:[apR[mStu, ` zaiNt> zaiNt> zaiNt>,

    If you minimize the entire procedure and spend maximum timechanting a mantra of Lord Krishna with offerings into fire and thenmeditating as the poornaahuti burns, you will get the

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    most out of your homam and not lose much! After some practice,you can compare this super-short procedure with the procedure givenin the main document and keep adding mantras from the mainprocedure and eventually switch to the main procedure. But eventhis super-short procedure, when performed sincerely, can give goodresults.

    Appendix B: Shodasopachaara Pooja

    [If you want to perform a shodasopachaara pooja (a worshipconsisting of 16 services) to Sri Krishna who is in fire and theidol, instead of the panchopachaara pooja mentioned in thisdocument, please use the procedure in this appendix instead. Thiswill take more time.]

    Say the line below and think in the mind that you are offering anice seat to Sri Krishna to sit on. While imagining that, justoffer a few akshatas to the idol and the fire.

    ` I k:[ay nm>, Aasn< smpRyaim,

    Now, say the line below imagine that you are washing his feet.While imagining that, show a little water with the spoon to thefire and leave the water in a small empty bowl (we will call it thedeposit bowl from now onwards).

    ` I k:[ay padyae> pa*< smpRyaim,

    Say the line below, imagine that you are washing the hands ofSri Krishna , show a little water in the spoon to the fire andleave it in the deposit bowl.

    ` I k:[ay hStyae> Ay smpRyaim,

    Say the line below, imagine that you are offering drinking waterto Sri Krishna s mouth, show a little water in the spoon to thefire and leave it in the deposit bowl.

    ` I k:[ay muoe zuacmnIy< smpRyaim,

    Say the first sentence below, imagine that you are giving a bathto Sri Krishna , show a little water in the spoon to the fire andleave it in the deposit bowl. Say the second sentence below,imagine that you are giving drinking water to Sri Krishna s mouthafter bath, show a little water in the spoon to the fire and leaveit in the deposit bowl.

    ` I k:[ay pyaim, ananNtr< AacmnIy< smpRyaim,

    Say the line below, imagine that you are offering a pair of niceclothes (one in the top and one in the bottom, i.e. like a shirtand a pant) and offer a few akshatas to the idol and the fire.

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    ` I k:[ay vai[ xaryaim,

    Say the line below, imagine that you are offering ayajnopaveetam (sacred thread) and offer a few akshatas to the idoland the fire.

    ` I k:[ay y}aepvIt< smpRyaim,

    Say the line below, imagine that you are offering nice jewelryand offer a few akshatas to the idol and the fire.

    ` I k:[ay Aar[ain smpRyaim,

    Say the line below and offer a little bit of sandalwood paste,turmeric powder, kumkum powder and akshatas to the idol and thefire. If you dont have all these, just sprinkle a few akshatas onthe idol and the fire.

    ` I k:[ay gNxan! xaryaim, hira k pUjyaim,

    Say the following line and show the incense stick lighted beforeto the fire and the idol.

    ` I k:[ay xUp< Aaapyaim,

    Say the following line and show the lamp lighted before to thefire and the idol. Then show a little water in the spoon to thefire and idol and leave it in the deposit bowl.

    ` I k:[ay dIp< dzRyaim, AacmnIy< smpRyaim,

    Say the first sentence below, show one of the two food items youprepared (or fruits) to god and imagine that he tasted it. If youknow the standard procedure of offering naivedyam with the Gayatrimantra, you can do it. Else, dont worry and just say the linebelow. When saying the second line, imagine that you are offering anice taamboolam (paan) to Sri Krishna and offer some akshatas intheir place to the idol and the fire.

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    ` I k:[ay nEve*< smpRyaim, taMbUl< smpRyaim,

    Place a little camphor on a camphor container or a plate, lightit and make a clockwise vertical circle in the air with the platein front of the fire. Say the line below while you do it.

    ` I k:[ay kpURrnIrajn< smpRyaim,

    Take a small flower (or some akshatas) in your right hand, saythe following and offer the flower to the idol (and perhaps acouple of petals into the fire). If you know Narayana Sooktamand/or Mantrapushpam (and if you have time), read them first andthen say the line below. Otherwise, just this line will do. Imaginethat you are offering a flower that captures the essence of allmantras.

    ` I k:[ay mpu:p< smpRyaim,

    Say the following and bow before Sri Krishna mentally. Ofcourse, you can also get up, go around the homa kundam once orthrice and bow down (or kneel down or lie down) in front of thefire, if you are not in a hurry. If someone looks at you from theroof or sky, it should look like you are going around the fire inclockwise directions.

    ` I k:[ay di][ nmSkaran! smpRyaim,

    While you do all this, make sure that the fire gets going. Keepplacing more dry coconut pieces if necessary to keep the firegoing. It may be tricky the first few times, but you will get usedto it. When necessary, you can sprinkle a little camphor powder inthe fire to make it bigger.

    Appendix C: Practical Tips and Hints

    Here are some hints related to practical aspects of homam:

    (1) In the beginning, there may be problems with maintaining thefire. New dry coconut pieces (or wood pieces) have to be put in thefire while old pieces are still burning, in order to keep the firegoing. Ones ability to estimate how long a dry coconut piece cansustain fire will improve with time.

    (2) If the fire completely goes away, sprinkling some camphorpowder on the hot pieces can bring the fire back. That fire can besustained by placing new pieces.

    (3) If only a small amount of akshatas are offered during pooja(one or two akshatas each time) and placed on a coconut piece, theywill eventually burn.

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    (4) When offering a flower, if only a petal is placed on acoconut piece and the rest of the flower is placed near the idol,it has a better chance of burning fully in the fire withoutcreating problems to the fire. Of course, in a homam performed witha big fire, full flowers burn easily.

    (5) If small amounts are offered, it works better (when the fireis also small).

    (6) If merely a drop of ghee is offered each time, less smoke isgenerated.

    (7) Wood generates smoke. But dry coconut generates very littlesmoke. It generates smokes mainly at the end when the fire goesaway. If the homa kundam is close to a window and the window isopened at the end, that may be sufficient to drive the little smokeout.

    (8) Apart from mantras of Sri Krishna , mantras of other deitiescan be offered in the fire while imagining them to be differentmanifestations of Sri Krishna .

    (9) It is a very good idea to keep the body as still aspossible, with minimal movement of only those body parts that mustmove (e.g. arm and mouth). It will maximize the positive spiritualbenefit from homam.

    (10) It is a good idea to keep atleast two coconut piecesburning all the time. Even if the fire in one becomes weak, theother piece can help re-ignite it.

    (11) If one puts a lot of oil or ghee in a pan and heats it, itgenerates smoke as the ghee burns. If one puts too little oil in apan and tries to fry vegetables, they burn and generate smoke. Ifone puts the right balance of oil and vegetables, they get cookedproperly and there is no smoke. Similarly, if one puts the rightbalance of ghee and solid materials, they burn without smoke. Therewill be some smoke only at the end, when the fire goes off. Wood,on the other hand, is different from dry coconut and generates moresmoke.

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