Shodash upachaar Puja / Dashopachar Puja / Pachapochar Puja
What is Puja
Puja is an act of showing respect to the deity by the worshiper. It makes a spiritual connection between the worshiper and the deity. It is the way through which one can get the blessings of God. It Gives energy and mental peace to the worshiper. It has the power to remove all the problems and the obstacles which come across.
How is Puja Done
According to the Hindu scriptures, while doing Puja of a deity, a few upachars or steps are adopted. These steps may be five Upachars or Ten Upachars or Sixteen Upachars.
Panchapochaar Puja / Panch Upchar
Panchapochaar are five rituals or steps of doing Puja of a deity. They are 1. Gandh, 2. Pushpa, 3. Dhoop, 4. Deep, 5.Naivedhya.
Dashopachar are ten ritual or steps of doing Puja of a deity. They are - 1. Padhya, 2. Arghya, 3.Aachaman, 4. Snan, 5. Vastra - Nivedan , 6. Gandh, 7. Pushpa, 8. Dhoop, 9. Deep, 10. Naivedhya.
Shodashopachaar Puja are sixteen rituals or steps. Here under are given the sixteen steps of Puja of a deity. These sixteen steps are known as Shodashopachaar Puja. These steps are common for all the Pujas but there may be some variations in them depending upon the deity and traditions. Mantra and shlokas may also be different-
1. Aavaahana, 2. Aasan, 3. Padhya, 4. Arghya, 5. Snan, 6. Vastra, 7. Gandh, 8. Akshat, 9. Pushpa, 10. Dhoop, 11. Deep, 12. Naivedhya, 13. Aachman, 14. Tamboolam, 15. Pugifalam, 16. Dakshina
Description of Steps-
1. Aavaahana- Aavaahan is the invocation of the deity by the worshiper.
2. Aasan- The worshiper offers the appropriate seat to the deity. It is like requesting the deity to take his / her place.
3. Padhya- The feet of deity are washed. It is done by pouring a little water over the feet of the deity.
4. Arghya- Arghya is offering water to the deity.
5. Snan- It is the bathing to the deity.
6. Vastra- After bathing, the deity is offered new clothes to wear.
7. Gandh- Scent or scented material is offered to the deity.
8. Akshat- Rice is offered to the deity.
9. Pushpa- Flowers are offered to the deity.
10. Dhoop- Agarbatti or the other thing is lighted as Dhoop batti.
11. Deep- A deepak or an earthen lamp is lighted.
12. Naivedhya- Some eatables are offered to the deity.
13. Aachman- Water is offered to sip and to wash mouth.
14. Tamboolam- Betel leaves are offered to the deity.
15. Pugifalam- Betel nut or such other thing is offered to the deity.
16. Dakshina- Some money is offered as a Dakshina to the deity.
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