According to Indian scriptures, the Zodiac consists of 360 degrees and there are 27 Constellations in total (also known as Nakshatras or Stars). Accordingly, each Star is allocated 20 minutes and thirteen Degrees. The First constellation or Nakshatra is named Aswini and the 19th is the Moola Nakshatra. The cluster of Stars is further divided in to 9 parts for the 9 planets. Of the 27 constellations, the first Aswini, the tenth Makham and the nineteenth Moolam falls under the rule of Ketu. Lambda Scorpio is the name for Moola Nakshatra in western astrology.
The word Moola literally means the root. The symbol for this star is a bunch of roots. The presiding deity of this Nakshatra is Alakshmi, which is opposed to Lakshmi or fortune. Moola also means the centre.
The persons born in this Nakshatra have a fundamental approach towards life. They tend to get to core of things. The word ‘relentless’ appropriately fits to people born in Moola Nakshatra. They just don’t stop till they have their wish or desire fulfilled. They can be also very impulsive, and regret their actions at the end.
Moola also happens to be an arrogant Nakshatra which often fails to understand its true potential. The influence of Ketu makes Moola sometimes to get negative and outrageous.
The people who are born in this Nakshatra possess good physical appearance and have bright eyes. They walk very fast, are optimistic and never give in easily. They are very helpful by nature and many times selfless. They are expert in making money, and are self made. They possess strong creative powers. It is good for them if they move away from their place of birth. They are religious people by nature, and are honest and humble.
Marriage for people born in this Nakshatra
Some on the Nakshatras are considered damaging by nature; Moola is one amongst those, especially when it comes to marriage activities. It is believed that marrying a girl born in this Nakshatra can prove fatal for the groom’s mother, brother and even father. It is not any different for a man born in the Moola Nakshatra.
Verses to appease afflictions caused by Moola Nakshatra
Depending on the planets transiting through the Moola Nakshatra, there are different verses to appease the negative effects:
SUN – If Sun is transiting, then one should recite Aditya Hridaya stotra daily along with worshipping Lord Shiva.
MOON – One should recite Annapurna Kavach daily along with worshipping Goddess Gouri
MARS – One should recite Kartikeya Mantras (Om saravana-bhavayaya Namah) or Shiva Mantra (Om Nama Shivaye)
JUPITER – One should recite Shri Rudram and Guru Beej Mantra
MERCURY – One should recite Vishnu Sahastranama Stotra.
VENUS – One should recite Durga Chalisa and Shukra Stotra. It is also advisable to recite Devi Stuti Stotra.
RAHU – One should recite rahu Beej Mantra and alongside worship Lord Shiva.
SATURN – One should recite Shani Mantra and Hanuman Stotra.
If there happen to be a Graha Dosha, especially the houses, for which construction started at the time of Moola Nakshatra, one should light earthen lamps or other lamps with pure mustard oil. This would help in eradicating household evils.
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Karva Chauth is a very important festival for married women and is celebrated mostly in the Northern part of India, and also some parts of Pakistan. The ritual is to observe a total fasting from sunrise to moonrise by all married women, and pray for the safety and long life of their husbands.
The festival of Karva Chauth, according to Hindu lunar calendar, falls on the 4th day after the poornima (full moon) in the month of Kartik (October-November). The fasting is generally meant for married women, but some unmarried women also observe the fast for long life of their fiancée or beloved.
The origin of the Karva Chauth is not known, but there are various legends associated with this day; two of them are as follows:
- Once upon a time, there was a beautiful girl, and her name was Viravati. She had seven brothers, and was the only sister. The brothers loved their sister a lot. When she got young, she was married to a king. For the observance of her first Karva Chauth after the marriage, Viravati visited her parents. She started observing the fast strictly as was required, but as the day passed slowly, she desperately started for moon to rise; she was feeling too much hungry. Her brothers could not bear the site of their sister suffering as such, so they decided to play a trick for her to break her fast. They reflected a mirror through leaves of a tree, and Viravati took it to be moonrise, and hence broke her fast before actual moon rise. No sooner that she had broken her fast, she received the news that her husband was critically sick.
Viravati immediately left to see her husband; on the way, she happened to meet Lord Shiva and his consort, Devi Parvati. Devi Parvati informed her that her husband had died because of her breaking fast at wrong time. Viravati was left heartbroken, and asked for forgiveness to the Goddess for her unintentional mistake. Devi Parvati was pleased and assured her that her husband would be revived; the condition was that she would need to undertake the fast of Karva Chauth very rigorously. Virvati happily agreed to it, and undertook the fasting again, and thus succeeded in reviving her dead husband.
- It is stated in Mahabharata that Draupadi, the wife of Pandavas also observed this fasting. The Pandavas were going through hard time and Draupadi remembered Lord Krishna for help. Lord Krishna reminded her of a pastime of Devi Parvati, where she was suggested by Lord Shiva to observe Karva Chauth . Draupadi followed the fasting, and thus helped Pandavas to come out of that troublesome situation.
The preparations for fasting start much earlier than the day of fasting itself. Married women buy new clothes, cosmetics and decorate their palms with henna.
On the day of Karva Chauth, they wake up before sunrise and eat something, according to customs in different parts of Northern India. After this, for the whole day till moon rise, fasting women don’t eat or drink anything. Parents send different gifts to their married daughters on this day.
Some other customs are also observed, which varies according to different regions.
At the end, the moon rise is awaited. As soon as the moon is visible the fasting woman sees its reflection through a sieve. The husbands also stand nearby their wives at this time. The women offers water to moon and they pray for the blessings. After this the woman sees her husband again through a sieve. The husband, at this time, gives his wife some water and a little piece of food, mostly a sweet. Thus the day long fast is broken. The husband also gifts his wife a nice gift as a token of appreciation.
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The time of Sun entering into the zodiac sign of Capricorn (Makar Rashi) on its celestial path, is known as Makara Sankranti. As a tradition, this is one of the harvesting days in the land of India. In year 2011, this day is falling on 15th of January.
India has a vast geography, and there is also so much diversity in culture depending on the location, cultural background and agricultural environment; so Makar Sankranti is also celebrated for different reasons and uncountable different ways depending on the above factors.
Sankranti is a Sanskrit word which literally means the moving of Sun from one place to another, mostly a rashi or zodiac sign. As there are 12 signs or rashis, so there are also 12 sankrantis; and when sun moves to Makar rashi (Capricorn) from Dhanu rashi (Sagittarius), it is called Makar Sankranti.
The celebration of this day is not limited to the country of India; on the other hand, this day is celebrated in almost all South Asian countries, though with different names.n
There are various legends which are connected to this day. Some of them are as follows:
- The ancient scripture of India, the Puranas, state that on the day of Makar Sankranti, the Sun visits his son known as Shani Dev (Saturn). Shani Dev happens to be the lord of Zodiac sign of Capricorn. The two don’t share a very cordial relationship, but still father decides to visit his son on this particular day, and stay there for a full month. Therefore, this day also celebrates special relationship between a son and a father.
- Lord Narayana finished the terrorizing demons on this day, and buried their heads under the mountain known as Mandara; therefore, this day also signifies end of negative forces and beginning of righteousness.
- The most celebrated Bhisma deva from Mahabharata, also decided to leave his body on this particular day. It should be noted here, that he had a boon from his father, to chose a day on his own, to leave this mortal world.
- King Bhagirath, after doing severe austerities to invite Devi Ganga on the planet earth to liberate his ancestors, was finally able to offer oblations and liberate his ancestors on this day.
For hindus, the day of Makar Sankranti is very auspicious and is celebrated throughout the country in different forms, with great devotion.
Innumerable devotees go to Ganga Sagar (the point where Ganga meets the ocean (Bay of Bengal)) to take a dip in her holy water on this day. Many also go for similar reasons to Prayag, in Allahbad, to take a dip in the conjunction of three holy rivers Ganga, Jamuna and Saraswti.
In Southern part of the country, it is celebrated as Pongal. In the state of Gujarat, the festival is celebrated by offering oblations to Sun God in the form of beautiful and colouful kites.
The day of Makara Sankranti signifies a period of peace, enlightenment, prosperity and happiness. This day reminds the prayer of faithful to God “Tamaso ma Jyotirgamaya” meaning “take me from darkness to a state of enlightenment”.