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What is Agnihotra?

The translation of Agnihotra in Sanskrit is Agni, “Fire,” and Hotra, “offering.” It is a Homa (fire ceremony) that can be performed individually or in a group. Agnihotra is an ancient Vedic tradition from Ayurveda (the Science of Life) and has been practiced for medical purposes for over 5000 years. Today it is commonly practiced all over India and is also spread all around the world.Agnihotra has to be performed in the morning at Sunrise or in the evening at Sunset. The offerings have to start exactly on time. When the very first sunrays touch mother Earth, an extreme electromagnetic field is created that we, with Agnihotra technology, can utilize. The pot can capture and reflect energy from the Sun. The offerings have to be precisely at sunrise (or sunset) time. Then the Sun’s rays touch the copper pyramid at a 90-degree angle and reflect in the atmosphere, purifying it 12kms in all directions around.

How is Agnihotra Performed?

For Agnihotra, we need ghee, rice, a candle, matches, dried organic cow dung, and a pyramidal-shaped pot of copper. You will find all the tools you need in a specialized shop selling Agnihotra equipment. The cow dung needs to come from organically fed cows. The rice should be mixed with ghee and divided into three small portions (about 5-10 corns of rice in each piece) for each person. Fill the pot with the dried cow dung cakes. Make sure to cover the cow dung cakes with a thin layer of ghee so they will quickly burn. Stack them so you get a hole in the middle where you can later stick down a lit cow dung to lit the whole pot. It will look like a Shiva Lingam. The person leading the ceremony should be sitting directed towards the east.We need to find out beforehand what time sunrise is at hour place on the particular date of the ceremony. Some excellent mobile apps (Agnihotra Buddy 2.0) can help us with this by locating our position with GPS.We make offerings to the Fire God with a feeling of respect and reverence. Hold the three portions of rice in the left hand. When singing “Om,” we take one piece with the right hand. The offerings are done with the following mudra, with rice mixed with ghee on our right-hand ring and middle fingers. The offering is made when we sing “Swaha.” Then we push it with the thumb into the fire, respectfully from the heart. The palm should be directed up and not down. The offering is made three times as we will sing “Om” and “Swaha” three times in the Agnihotra prayer:First offering:“Aum Surya SwahaIdam Surya Idam Na Mamaha”Second offering:“Aum Prajapataye SwahaIdam Prajapataye Idam Na Mamaha”Third offering:“Aum Paramatmaya SwahaIdam Paramatmay Idam Na Mamaha”Aum has three critical parts of the Creation, Akaar, Ukaar, Makaar, manifestation, preservation, and dissolution, and it is the ultimate cosmic sound. Surya is the Sun to who we make the first offering. Through the Sun, we are offering to the Cosmos. I am Surya Idam Namaha, meaning it belongs to the Sun, not me. Second, we provide to Prajapataye. Prajapataye is the Father of God, the Creator. We are offering to the Creator and, through him, to the Cosmos. Lastly, we offer to Paramatma. Atma is our inner Cosmos, and Paramatma is the Universal Cosmos we are offering to the Cosmic Consciousness.

How we perform Agnihotra in the Ashram

We do the Agnihotra ceremony every morning at the Universal Peace Centre. Preparing the Agnihotra is conducive to singing the mantra for our heart opening and awareness expansion to prepare us for meditation. Every day we follow the rule to light the candle 6 minutes before, light a cow dung stick 5 minutes before, and light the pot with the cow dung stick put in the middle of the pot 4 minutes before we start our offerings. We do the offerings as we sing the Agnihotra prayer. We will do six offerings at special occasions and festivals, then sing Gayatri Mantra for the last three offerings. The Ved Mantra follows it, and we offer ghee into the fire to keep it burning. We end with open-eye meditation for about 15-20 minutes while we fix our gaze on the fire/pot. When the first UPC building was ready, Swamiji did not bother with Vedic rituals, as he felt that meditation alone was a good tool for the spiritual seeker. But he realized that most of us could not properly meditate, and we needed to ground ourselves first. So he put the morning and evening ceremonies in place of the two traditional Indian Pujas. So today, we are enjoying the Agnihotra ceremony every morning in our Ashram.

Why Agnihotra should have three offerings

In many places today, we find that Agnihotra is done with only two offerings. When Sunyogi discovered this, he felt something was wrong and went into deep research. He came to understand that Agnihotra should be done with three offerings. He found there exist three parts of God or the Black Hole. The Black Hole has an expanding part (North Pole), a contracting part (South Pole), and a balancing part (Centre Pole). Offering in Agnihotra is done today to the two first parts but missing the most crucial part, the center pole. Parmatmaya is our connection in the center, the universal soul that connects to our individual soul.After some time, when Sunyogi had this realization, he found that there were places where they did three offerings, which confirmed his discovery.

What are the benefits of Agnihotra?

We hear testimonies about substantial improvements in crop yields or increased wildlife in areas where Agnihotra is performed. We do our ceremony at Dawn, and it is a good time for germs and microbes to develop in our bodies. Thus, being in a devotional mood at that time and receiving sun energy, we will help the beneficial microorganisms within us grow while the toxic microbes deteriorate.

Health benefits of Agnihotra

The smoke from this fire is excellent for cleansing our lungs and removing mucus. Here the quality of the materials used is essential. The cow dung must come from well-treated cows, organically fed, with their horns intact. Ghee and rice must be organic as well. The fire made of such suitable materials will make a tremendous purifying smoke.  An essential cosmic electromagnetic field is created with the natural and good magnet atmosphere from the cow dung and the electromagnetic fire field. The Sunlight touching the Earth and the Fire electromagnetic fields are connecting and expanding very fast, resulting in a globe of 12 kilometers with an overall environmental impact. Agnihotra is helping everyone in that area experience inner balance and enhanced nature. The cow dung is both antiseptic and antibiotic and is thus excellent protection for the people close to the Agnihotra ceremony, getting enhanced oxygen. The respiratory system is cleansed from any poisonous germs in the body. Some may think the smoke is dangerous. Chemical-originated smokes are indeed unhealthy, whereas natural Agnihotra smoke is very beneficial. A similar difference is perceived between drinking cosmic consciousness (energy from the Sun), leading to the toxins being expelled from the cells, and drinking alcohol or smoking drugs with toxins entering the cells. The enjoyment may seem similar, but the consequences in all domains of life are nevertheless entirely different.The measurement of oxygen in the air is 21%, which will increase when we perform Agnihotra. This enhances our healing. The breathable air is roughly 21% oxygen; the rest comprises nitrogen and other substances. The cow dung oxygen level in a laboratory is 21%. When it dries, the percentage rises from 21% to 33%. Then when it is burnt into ashes, the rate of oxygen increases to 46%, and if burnt one more, the oxygen percentage goes from 46% to 50%. On another matter, many body parts require a slightly alkaline pH for best function—every cell needs its proper alkaline balance.The following are approximate pH levels (pH 7,0 is neutral):5.8 Bottle water6.2 Aquaguard water (reverse osmosis)6.5 Aquaguard water with Agnihotra ashes6.8 Groundwater7.0 Marth Silva7.4 Groundwater with Agnihotra ashes (similar to 7.369 mother breast and cow milk)For multi-virtues purposes, ashes can be put on the forehead. After the ceremony, the ash (Vibhuti) can be swallowed directly from the pot for its alkaline benefit. It can also be consumed mixed with water for healing. We can also mix it with pure ghee from cow’s milk and apply it for various ailments, such as skin diseases, blood disease, wounds, and sore throats, to name a few. The ashes from the Agnihotra ceremony have excellent high protection and multi-purpose qualities. Adding Sunlight to it, the qualities are multiplied. It is an ayurvedic plant medicine Sunyogi received the formula from Mahavatar Babaji to protect Humanity. The practicing Sunyoga coupled with performing Agnihotra is an explosive life recipe.

Agricultural benefits of Agnihotra

Occasionally we are surprised when performing Agnihotra in nature to see how animals are attracted to it. In Malaysia, for example, we had instances of injured foxes approach and enjoy the fire to heal. Agnihotra gives healing on very subtle energy levels as well. The Agnihotra and cow dung can be utilized for farm cultivation, one level higher than organic cultivation.To fertilize fields, the UPC ashram uses a mixture of cow dung, ghee, cow urine, Agnihotra ash, and jaggery in specific proportions. Agnihotra ceremony purifies the outer atmosphere. There are an abundance viruses and poisons in the air. Agnihotra removes these harmful viruses and toxins very efficiently. In addition, ashes can be used for plants and trees that are struggling to grow. Used as a fertilizer and pesticide, it helps give fruits and flowers.

Spiritual benefits of Agnihotra

In Sunyoga, we learn the 8 Ashtanga steps of Yoga. As one can fully integrate all these steps, we can reach Enlightenment. Sunyogi teaches practical 5P action steps toward this level of realization. As explained above, when practicing 5Ps correctly, the five elements get balanced automatically.How does Agnihotra help the yoga practitioner to reach his goal? For Agnihotra we need to wake up early and that reduces our laziness. We need to organize the puja place, prepare the offerings, be on time, etc. This diminish our selfishness. By singing mantras or bhajans together, tuning in with others as One, we expand ourselves to each other and open our Hearts. So faithfully practicing Agnihotra is a great way to deepen our meditation practice. The created atmosphere offers everyone the occasion to meditate on the divine Fire in an excellent inner and outer purified environment. Sunyogi explains that anything we do in life can be ritual or spiritual. Ritual is when we do it abscenminded as an habit because of some outer force pushing us to do it. It becomes a spirituality when we feel compelled to do it and we apply our awarenss. The same is for any activity. We either do our social work for our benefit or selflessly for the use of many in connection with the almighty. Unconditional Love, Karma, Seva, knowledge, and meditation lead us to spirituality. Selfishness uniquely leads to rituality.The difference resides in our applied awareness and relates to the 5Ps and the five elements. Agnihotra practice with prevailing Earth, Water, Air, Fire, and Space elements is a perfect opportunity to get into meditation in a well-prepared environment.Consciously, with Patience balancing the Earth element, we wait for the right time, the very tiny frequency window when we make the offerings to the divine Fire God. Patience is necessary for our Karma completion. How much we are tortured, we still carry on. Mothers have Patience in caring for their children. Patience is vital for all successes and solutions. Patience is the Earth’s element of Awareness expansion.Punctuality the exact time is required for the offering, not one second after, one second before. When performing every day at the same time, at the same place, meditation or any work will call us without even thinking of it, then inducing stress-free planned actions. Punctuality is balancing the Water element. Similarly to water emerging from the mountain’s source and reaching the ocean, not even a barrage would stop it. Any amount of blockage in our life, we should not stop. We have to reach the sea, our goal. Perfection in offering and serving comes from the heart; perfection does not originate from the intellect. Patience and punctuality make it perfect by the heart. First, feel, Love, and then give through the heart, which automatically and silently develops inside perfection altogether with the heart Chakra opening.Perfection is the Air element. Air is all around, even inside solid parts. Air is very punctual. In any little tiny place, the air is present in a similar way as many blockages in our life; with just a little air hole, we diligently finish our work up to the end, closing task by task one after the other. Life gives us struggles, challenges and tests. How we can overcome them and learn from them, we will learn about ourselves and humankind. Success is waiting if we will be able to complete our work. It follows the natural law, every action has an opposite and equal reaction. Newtons third law.Purification during the Agnihotra ceremony is also happening inside of us if we have applied patience and punctuality. It will be a fire deep from the heart that bur our materialistic desires one by one. It is a reflection of the fire-burning offerings outside. The Fire element cleans all our negativities and negative thoughts, leading to the attainment of Samadhi.Pleasantness is the result of balancing the Space element. We get satisfaction and peace from being connected to cosmic consciousness. This gives balance in the five elements and  creates our good Karma. Being continuously connected with the cosmic consciousness is what is called Enlightenment.

The hidden symbolism of Homa and Agnihotra

Pushkar is the only place where Lord Brahma is worshipped, owing to a curse uttered by his wife, Saraswati. There is a story that explains why his wife cursed him. Long ago, in ancient times, a Yajna (a great Homa, i.e., a sacred offering ritual in a fire) was performed by all the Gods for universal peace (Vishwashanthi). For a Homa to be performed, both husband and wife are required. Lord Vishnu and Shiva came with their wives, but Brahma came alone. They could not do the prayer until all three wives were present. Therefore, they were waiting for Savitri, Brahma’s wife, to arrive.Because she was late, causing a delay in the worship, Brahma told his son Narada to bring his mother. Narada saw an opportunity to create conflict between Brahma and Savitri. He had already been able to create misunderstandings between Vishnu, Lakshmi, Shiva, and Parvati. Instead of telling his mother to come quickly, he told her to bring all her friends. All these ladies had to make themselves ready, and as we know, women usually need a lot of time until they finish making themselves beautiful.Savitri was late, so the priest (Prajapati) ordered Indra to bring any kumari (a prepubescent girl) to come and accompany Brahma for a Gandharva marriage (a simple temporary marriage). Indra (the king of heaven) found an eight-year-old girl named Gayatri giving food to the cows. He took the girl with him so they could start the Puja. Savitri, the first wife of Brahma, finally arrived and was very angry when she saw that the girl Gayatri was sitting in her place. She cursed her husband so no one on earth could worship him. It created a problem because if he, as top of the deities, did not get any Puja, no one else would get any.Soon she understood that the marriage had only occurred because of her late arrival, and thus she felt regret and changed the curse; the worship of Lord Brahma would only take place where the prayer had been held, in Pushkar. She was pleased but was not able to stop the curse entirely. Hence, even today, Lord Brahma is worshipped only in Pushkar. The story symbolically explains different parts of Yoga, where Yajna Kunda or Homa Kunda (the fire pit used for worship) is symbolized by the stomach and navel. From our minds, we create fire, which can purify thoughts and emotions. This fire goes to the navel, where our first cell is located, and it can hold on to everything within our individual nature. It stores everything and holds on to emotions and incomplete thoughts as long as we feel attached to them.Ajna Chakra and Anahata Chakra are the places of Brahma and Vishnu, respectively. Swadisthana Chakra is the place of Lord Shiva. Hence, the man who wants to find the truth in nature has to awaken the Kundalini in his body by practicing Yoga and meditation and gradually opening himself up from his blockages. In this way, he will find actual knowledge about nature and God.In the story, the two lower body parts were present at the Homa worship, i.e., Shiva and Vishnu. They were also balanced as they had come with their wives. However, the upper region symbolizing the Ajna Chakra was not in balance. Therefore, wisdom was lacking. The husband and wife were separated. Only Gayatri was there.When trying to correct this imbalance in life, we are often looking to satisfy it by receiving knowledge, which in the story is represented by Gayatri. Gayatri is very young. That means the knowledge we are getting is not mature, incomplete, and unable to give complete satisfaction. Therefore, only when Savitri comes (i.e., our wisdom) do we have the whole body balanced and can then get self-realization.Today we are not aware of the deeper meaning of the fire rituals. With the ceremony want to create an outer balance that will help us to bring some inner balance, that is, self-realization.agni 34 scaled

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1 Comment

  1. It was really helpful and i really enjoyed myself

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