Naga Chathurthi and Naga Panchami are traditional Hindu festivals dedicated to the worship of snakes and are celebrated all across India and Nepal. Those who celebrate the festival seek protection against snake bites and also call down the serpent blessings for the well-being of their children, family, fertility, and prosperity. On these days live snakes are worshiped at ant hills, where fresh eggs are offered and milk is poured. Serpent images in silver, stone, wood, or rice flour are bathed in milk and worshiped. In north and east India Manasa Devi, the Goddess of Snakes, is invoked and pacified. The two festivals are typically observed, in order, on the fourth and fifth waxing Moon days in the Shravan month of Hindu lunar calendar.
Specialty of Naga Festival in 2016
This year Naga Chaturthi falls on August 6, 2016. What makes the Naga festivals extra special this year is that they occur when the Sun, which in astrology represents the ‘soul,’ is in the ‘Naga’ nakshatra (or Ashlesha), making it the most propitious time for invoking divine grace to cleanse Naga doshas, or curses of the snakes.
Special Mantra for Worshipping the Snake God
The Sarpa Suktam (serpent hymn) originates from the Krishna Yajur Veda. These mantras are dedicated to nine prominent serpent Gods, and praise the Divine in the form of a snake. Chanting the powerful Sarpa Suktam mantra and performing a Rahu-Ketu homa (fire lab) can bring the following benefits:
- Destruction of Rahu-Ketu dosha resulting from the placement of the two shadowy planets in houses 1, 2, 4, 5, 7, 8, or 12.
- Nullification of Kalasarpa Dosha, which arises from the enclosure of all the seven physical planets between Rahu and Ketu in the native horoscope.
- Cancellation of Sarpa dosha, which occurs when all the natural malefics are posited in Kendra houses in the native horoscope.
- Removal of doshas contracted from killing snakes in the past.
- Prevention of dangers from poisons, chemicals, and allergic substances.
- Deliverance from addictions to alcohol and other intoxicants.
- Relief from Pitru (forefathers) doshas.
- Alleviation of insanity and other mental ailments.
Gemstones and Rituals to Overcome Effects of Naga dosha
Astrologically, hessonite and granite are deemed sacred to Rahu. Cat’s eye or lapis lazuli are sacred to Ketu. The stones are to be worn as rings or necklaces in a skin-touching way to ward off the evils of Rahu-Ketu related curses or doshas.
AstroVed’s comprehensive Naga Chaturthi and Naga Panchami remedial packages essentially include abishekam to snakes, group homa by chanting sarpa suktam mantra, homa for Rahu Ketu, and other rituals at five snake temples.