Asthi Visarjan is a Hindu ritual that involves immersing the ashes and remains of the deceased in a sacred river or other body of water. This act is believed to help the departed soul attain peace and reach the afterlife. The word "Asthi" refers to the bones and ashes left after the cremation, while "Visarjan" means immersion.
The ritual is typically performed by the deceased's family members, who gather the ashes and bones, place them in an urn or kalash, and then carefully immerse the remains in the sacred river after making the Asthi Visarjan booking. It is commonly believed that performing Asthi Visarjan correctly and with devotion ensures the soul's smooth journey toward moksha (liberation).
The Significance of Asthi Visarjan
In Hinduism, it is believed that the soul is immortal and undergoes a cycle of birth, death, and rebirth. Asthi Visarjan symbolizes the release of the soul from its earthly existence and its journey to the afterlife. By performing this ritual, the family members of the deceased are helping the soul attain moksha and break free from the cycle of life and death.
Connection to the Five Elements
According to Hindu philosophy, the human body is made up of five elements: earth, water, fire, air, and ether. Cremation is a way of returning the body to these elements. By immersing the ashes in a sacred river, the family ensures that the remaining elements are also returned to nature, completing the cycle and enabling the soul to move on to its next journey.
The Procedure of Asthi Visarjan
Collecting the Ashes
After the cremation, the family members carefully collect the ashes and bones of the deceased. These remains are then placed in an urn or Kalash, which is typically made of clay or metal. The urn is then wrapped in a red cloth to cover the opening.
Choosing the Location
The selection of the location for Asthi Visarjan is crucial, as it should ideally be a sacred river or other body of water. In India, the Ganges River is considered the holiest and is the preferred location for this ritual. Other sacred rivers include the Yamuna, Godavari, Krishna, and Saraswati. Many families also opt to book asthi visarjan in Kashi (Varanasi), Haridwar, or other pilgrimage cities.
Performing the Puja
A puja or religious ceremony is conducted by a priest or pandit before the immersion of the ashes. The family members and friends of the deceased participate in the puja, offering prayers and making offerings such as flowers, fruits, and rice. The priest typically recites mantras and guides the family through the ritual.
Immersing the Ashes
Following the puja, the family members carry the urn to the riverbank or other chosen locations. The ashes and bones are then carefully immersed in the sacred water, symbolizing the release of the soul from the physical body and its journey to the afterlife.
Final Prayers and Offerings
After the immersion, the family may choose to offer additional prayers and make further offerings, such as scattering flower petals, to complete the Asthi Visarjan ceremony.
When to Perform Asthi Visarjan
Asthi Visarjan is typically performed three days after the cremation. However, if the immersion does not take place within ten days, it should only be performed after the completion of Tirtha Shraddha, a separate ritual that honours the deceased. It is essential to consult a priest or pandit to determine the most auspicious time for the Visarjan.
Asthi Visarjan Booking
Due to the significance and complexity of the Asthi Visarjan ritual, it is advisable to seek the assistance of a professional pandit who is well-versed in the traditions and procedures. Asthi visarjan booking services, such as those offered by SmartPuja, provide families with the convenience of arranging a pandit and ensuring the correct performance of the ritual.
Benefits of Asthi Visarjan Booking
Booking a pandit or priest for Asthi Visarjan has several advantages:
1. Expertise: A professional pandit has the knowledge and experience necessary to perform the ritual correctly, ensuring the smooth transition of the soul to the afterlife.
2. Convenience: By booking a pandit for Asthi Visarjan, families can focus on grieving and honouring their loved ones without worrying about the complexities of the ritual.
3. Regional Variations: Asthi Visarjan rituals can vary based on regional and community customs. Booking a pandit from your specific community ensures that the ritual is performed according to your traditions.
4. Flexibility: With asthi visarjan booking services, you can choose from a wide range of pandits and priests, ensuring that you find a suitable match for your needs and preferences.
Book Asthi Visarjan in Kashi and Other Holy Cities
Kashi (Varanasi) is considered one of the holiest cities in India and is a popular destination for Asthi Visarjan. Many families choose to book asthi visarjan in Kashi due to the spiritual significance of the city and its sacred river, the Ganges. Other holy cities, such as Haridwar and Rishikesh, are also popular choices for Asthi Visarjan.
When booking Asthi Visarjan in these cities, it is crucial to work with a reputable service provider to ensure that the ritual is performed correctly and in accordance with your traditions.
Rules and Guidelines for Asthi Visarjan
It is essential to follow specific rules and guidelines while performing Asthi Visarjan to ensure that the ritual is conducted correctly and respectfully:
1. Store the ashes in a mud pot or urn and cover the opening with a red cloth.
2. Never place the urn on the ground while travelling to the immersion location.
3. Wear clean, traditional attire, such as a dhoti, during the puja.
4. Seek the guidance of a professional, knowledgeable priest or pandit.
5. Understand and adhere to the specific rituals and customs of your community.
Asthi Visarjan is a vital Hindu ritual that enables the deceased's soul to attain peace and reach the afterlife. By understanding the importance, procedure, and guidelines of this ritual, families can ensure that their loved ones are honoured and remembered in the most sacred way. With the help of asthi visarjan booking services and by choosing to book asthi visarjan in Kashi or other holy cities, families can focus on grieving and healing while ensuring that the ritual is performed correctly and respectfully.