Hindu Havan – An Ancient Fire Ritual

Hinduism has extremely precious rituals and vidhis associated with its existence. Every ritual framed has highly advanced beneficiary methodologies associated. Havan is seen to be the prime part of any major Puja. The sacredness and purity which a Havan can create are much more than any other process. A Homa or Havan is a sacred Hindu ritual in which offerings are made to the fire.

Fire is considered to be the main element of a Havan or Homa as well as belongs to the major five elements of existence. The offerings made to the sacred fire, during a Havan, are said to purify the environment as well as the people around. It is also believed to drive away all negative energies around. This fire is supposedly the main link between cosmic consciousness and human consciousness.

The key to spiritual and material success

Havan is seen as one of the ten niyams/rules or positive virtues that are prescribed for a devotee, who wishes to come closer to the divine, one who wants to acquire Oneness with Him. Havan is also one way of performing the Deva Yagnya, i.e. one of man’s five daily duties, as per the tenets of the Sanatan Dharma. A Havan is, generally, performed with an aim to achieve spiritual as well as material success.

What is a Havan?

Havan - the ancient fire ritual

It is performed in a Havan Kund or fire pit which is made of bricks. This fireplace is generally decorated with colorful flowers, leaves, beans, and grains. The items used in performing Havan are a special mixture of medicinal herbs, roots, dry fruits, wood and ghee and are offered as an oblation into the Havan Kund fire. This is accompanied by Sanskrit Mantras which are yet another powerful medium.

Types Of Havan Kunds

Havan - the ancient fire ritual

The most interesting fact about Havan Kunds is its different properties in different situations. As per the Scriptures, the unique shape of the Havan Kunda looks into the controlled generation and multi-directional dissipation of energy. It acts as a generator of essential and highly powerful energy fields and spreads them in its surrounding atmosphere. Below mentioned are the shapes in which a Havan Kund can be made and their properties:-

  • Rectangular or Square – It is also called Chaturastra Kund for the accomplishment of all work & gaining Siddhis.
  • Triangular – It is also called Trikon Kund which look like bow & arrow and perfectly designed to win over enemies.
  • Circular – It is also called Vrut Yajna Kund and is designed for public welfare and peace.
  • Semi-Circle – It is also called Ardha Chandra Kund which is made to gain harmony, happiness, peace and resolve conflicts. It is also for conferring peace in the family, both wife and husband have to offer oblation together.
  • Hexagonal
  • Yoni Kunda – designed for desire manifestation like getting a child and attracting love
  • Octagonal
  • Lotus-shaped – It is also known as the Padma Kund which denotes Lotus and the Yajna Kund is made in Flower shape which is primarily made to gain wealth. Some old scriptures also mention its construction for safety against evil energies.
  • Star-shaped Yajna Kund – It is also called Pushtrkon Kund which is made for a win over the unseen and seen enemies.
  • The Yajna Kund with 6 angles is constructed for stopping death.

Types Of Havan performed

There are different types of Havan performed depending on the requirements. Some depend on the region, some on the purpose and some on the situation. We may have missed certain kinds of Havan so do comment below if you know any additional information. We would be glad to accept that.

Havan - the ancient fire ritual

Lakshmi ganapathi havan
Rudra havan pooja
Navagraha havan
Nakshatra havan
Maha mrityunjaya havan
Sudarshan havan
Saraswati havan
Lakshmi Narasimha havan
Lakshmi Narayana Havan
Subrahmanya havan
Chandi havan
Mahalakshmi havan
Dhanvantari havan
Dakshinamurthy havan
Lalitha devi havan
Gayatri havan
Santana gopala havan

Samagri/ Materials Needed For A Havan

Havan - the ancient fire ritual

Hawan Samagri ingredients are approximately of 70 types. We have mentioned major of the samagris below.
Agar Wood
Anwala
Bach
Baheda
Bawachi
Bay Leaves
Cardamom Green
Chharil
Cloves
Daru
Haldi
Deodar
Dhawai Phool
Dry Coconut or Sookha? Nariyal
Dry Eucalyptus leaves
Guggal or Guggul
Guruch
Harr or Harad
Howber
Indra Jau
Jara Kush
Jata Masi? or Balchhad
Kamal Gatta
Kapoor Kachari
Nag Keshar
Nagarmotha
Nutmeg
Red Sandal Wood
Sandal Wood
Sugandh Bala
Sugandh Kokila
Sugandh Mantri
Tagar Wood
Talish Patra
Tej Bal Wood
Tomad Bee

Dry the leaves and roots in a shadowed open space till the entire moisture is removed. Mix these together and grind the mixture.

 

Why should Havan be performed? (Benefits)

Havan - the ancient fire ritual

In Saam Veda, about 114 Mantras speak about the importance of Havana. Yajur Veda says that the Havana is the most important, necessary and useful deed. The Vedas say that Yajna or Yagnya and Gayatri Mantra are the only ways of attaining Moksha or Salvation or Self-realization. All four Vedas have innumerable mantras related to Yajna. The word Yajna is derived from the root “Yaj”. The word “Yaj” has three connotations as mentioned in the Yajur Veda mantra as “Yajudevapujasangatikaranadaaneyshu”.

Havan has many benefits; starting from our body, mind, soul to the environment. It’s us who have left these traditions and super awesome solutions by ancestors, somewhere behind. The benefits of Havan are mentioned below:-

Acts as a cleanser

We not only purify the air but also remove the impurities from our mind and body.

A source of bonding

This process also helps in maintaining the unity and harmony in the family and the community.

The evil destructor

By constantly looking at the Havan fire, and by chanting this divine mantra, all disturbing and wavering thoughts will be destroyed in the fire which will result in concentration and equanimity.

Acts as a disinfectant

Various gasses produced during Havana decompose the poisonous gasses liberating free oxygen and other useful products acting as disinfectants. A scientist named Trelle of France did experiments on Havan. He found that Havan is mainly performed by using mango tree. When the wood is burnt then a gas, “formic aldehyde” comes out which destroys the harmful bacteria and makes the atmosphere purified. Then only, the scientists made “formalin” from “formic aldehyde” gas. He also did experiment on jaggery Gur and found that on burning the jaggery, jaggery also generates “formic aldehyde” gas. A scientist named Tautilk came to know that if we stay in a Havan and its smoke for half an hour then the germs of typhoid are destroyed and all these matters are used in Havan. Yajurveda says that four types of things mainly used to prepare offerings for a Havan- 1. Sweet Like honey, jaggery, raw sugar etc., 2. Antibiotic herbs like gyol, etc., 3. Nutrition like pure ghee, dry fruits etc., 4. Fragrant materials like cardamom, dried petals flowers etc.

An energy booster

With the offerings into the fire and chanting of mantras, one’s chakras are re-energized, creating a rejuvenating and revitalizing effect for both the mind and body.

Ladder to success

One attains positive thoughts, actions, and words which pave way for one’s success.

Acts as a shield

Havan is said to dispel all negative energies and a protective shield is said to be built around the house where the ritual is performed, warding off any negative or evil energies.

It strengthens the mental abilities

Havan also induces peace, good health, prosperity and clarity of thought, with the increased power of discrimination and an improved usage of mental abilities. The result, therefore, is the success in all one does.

When should havan be performed?

Ideally, Havan should be performed daily. In every household, havan should be carried out the once per week at least in the presence of all members of the family. Early hours of the morning are considered to be the most conducive for all religious activities as the air is charged with energy or praan at that time. However, this practice may also be done at a time that is best suited for everyone.

No Havan is considered complete until some Donation/Daan is given. Daan refers to acts of charity and benevolence, liberality, and gifts, financial and otherwise.

Conclusion

Today’s polluted environment is the biggest challenge being faced by the world. It is threatening the very survival not only of the human race but the entire living world. The western world has in recent times become truly concerned about our environment which has become increasingly polluted over the years. Our Rishis and Maharishis have since the early Vedic Age advised us of the purification process involved in a Havan. It follows that if more people perform Havan two times a day, it can arguably have a greater influence in purifying the environment. But, we have ignored it tillages. If we pledge to follow the rules of Sanatana Dharma and perform our acts accordingly, I’m sure within no time, the world would be a much better place to reside in.

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