Sunday, June 24, 2007

Agnihotra: A Simple Approach for Earth and Human Being

By: Pam Fernandez
(Professor, UP Los Banos)

We are at the tipping point in our earth evolution. Tipping point is when things can happen all at once, and little changes can make a huge difference. Earth phenomena are no longer linear, much like a butterfly effect which says that the flutter of the wings of a butterfly can create a tsunami half way around the globe. Global warming is now very real and highly felt. Major disasters are no longer rare and distant. The earth is certainly sick and although it is doing something by itself to do repair (often unpleasant for humans), humans need to help if we are to save ourselves. We are not totally helpless. With a few people doing something positive, a force field much like a magnetic field can be created that would have quantum effects. Indeed there are quantum solutions that produce quantum events for situations that seem already too much for humans to solve. One of these is Agnihotra, a science of resonance. It is very simple and uncomplicated to do. We can do it in our very own homes while the effect can be far-reaching, with some saying between one to 20 km all around us. According to ancient Indian scripts Agnihotra is the solution to all the problems of the present day world. If we take this further and heed the moral law of the ages Agnihotra is an ordained duty of each person, irrespective of religion, sect, cast creed, nationality, color, sex and age.

Following are some thoughts that may give us some insights on how we, as individuals, may help cure our ailing earth, strengthen our sick plants, clean our water and land, and make ourselves healthy, happy, clearheaded, and willful. The solution is so simple and easy (takes only 2-3 minutes each time to perform), yet highly scientific and the effect wide ranging. It would help us to be reminded that the old materialist science in the 19th century (to see is to believe) is already dead. This was succeeded by Einstein in his Theory of Relativity (E=mc2) and further on by Quantum Physics and beyond which have been the basis of the atom bomb and the more recent discoveries (such as cellphones, iPods, iphones and others). Interestingly, this quantum science also explains the workings of indigenous knowledge systems and ancient peoples’ practices (such as prayer, offering, singing, chanting, positive thoughts, checking out heavenly bodies as guide for their actions, healing through fires and herbs, etc.).

Agnihotra, is an ancient scientific approach that is ritualized and which we could bring back as our antidote to massive POLLUTION of our earth and our minds. We can be part of the solution…a simple but scientific solution, which can help patch up the ozone hole, cure disease epidemics and remove harmful radiation and radioactivity (such as the one from the Chernobyl nuclear plant catastrophe). Moreover, when used in agriculture, greater productivity and profits, as well as superior quality, are achieved. For healing we need only to remember that the state of our psyche is directly dependent on the quality and quantity of prana available. The more Agnihotra we do, the more prana there is, the more the mind and atmosphere are purified, and the more human transformation would be effected.

Simply, what is Agnihotra? Agni” means fire and “hotra” means healing. Agnihotra is part of ancient Vedic practices of medicine, agriculture (Homa therapy and homa agriculture) and climate engineering. It is a twice daily practice and the basic form of Yajnya (the process of healing and purifying the atmosphere with fire as the medium) tuned to the biorhythm of sunrise/sunset (the two most important biorhythms of nature). Agnihotra process is based on ancient Vedic science of bioenergy (Veda is universal and pure knowledge already revealed in the ancient Indian culture through the Rishis or seers). If practiced regularly, Agnihotra yields great healing power to the atmosphere and to the individual.

Places that practice Agnihotra: Aside from India, countries that are much into Agnihotra are Australia, Peru and other countries in South and Central America (Venezuela, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Panama), and Europe (Poland, Germany, Spain), and USA. A small group of farmers are doing it in Cavite. The author practices it in her home in Los Banos.

General principle: the earth is alive and thus has the aspects of physical or matter (rocks, minerals) and energy or life force (ether, formative force, prana). When approached correctly, it can be revitalized. By inducing a change in the atmosphere through Agnihotra and allowing the earth to breathe, a change in the functioning of prana is brought about. The resonance created by the practice of Agnihotra initiates this change process and leads to healing of the atmosphere. When the atmosphere is healed then the rest of the earth is also healed, including not only those doing the Agnihotra but also the rest of living things reached by the Agnihotra atmosphere. The resulting ash absorbs the bio-energy or healing powers and becomes the material medium for further healing. Agnihotra and its ash are popularly used in healing and folk medicines. A sample of its application in various ailments is given at the end of this document.

Three minimum DISCIPLINES of Agnihotra:
Burning of specific organic substances in copper (or gold) pyramid
Specific timings corresponding to one circadian rhythm of nature (i.e., sunrise and sunset)

Five basic THINGS necessary:
Timetable or calendar or definite timing of sunrise/sunset
Fire through cow-dung cake (only from grass-fed cow)
Pyramid shaped copper pot (or gold; clay also cited although lack scientific studies) of a specific size
Offerings of raw whole grain rice together (smeared) with cow’s pure ghee
Mantras (1 for sunrise & 1 for sunset, both having 2 lines each)
Others: watch (with hour, min and sec and synchronized with GMT)
Matches (can be lighted candle; no lighter); cotton wicks to enhance burning

The burning and the fire: When specific substances are burned in a copper (or gold) pyramid with a specific mantra at exact timing of sunrise/sunset, a specific effect is guaranteed to occur. The fumes, smoke or vapors from the burning components rise high up in space. It gathers the nutritional properties and brings them down through pure rains benefiting all forms of life.

“Fire is prepared using dried cow-dung cakes in the pyramid shaped pot. The presence of chemicals like Menthol, Ammonia, Phenol, Indol, and Formalin enhances the medicinal properties of cow dung. Its disinfectant values are well known”…”Climatic conditions may affect the lighting of the fire, especially during humid periods (Wet/ Monsoon season), as well as, if the cow-dung cakes are moist or damp (either due to the cakes not being dried correctly or climatic conditions). In the case of humid conditions one should start a 2-3 minute earlier (at least 10 minutes before); however one can use dry twigs of trees of specified varieties (from ayurvedic healing plants). Vata-‘Ficus bengalenensis’, Audumbara-‘Ficus glomerata’, Palaash-‘Butea frondosa’, Peepal-‘Ficus religiosa’ and Bel-‘Ægle marmelos’ are the specified varieties. Twigs of these trees are medicinal and have healing affect. Cow-dung, of course, is the essential ingredient.” Ficus is the generic name under which the balete tree belongs…“Fire should be prepared 8-10 minutes before Agnihotra time, and the lighting of the fire can be assisted by using a cotton wick duly soaked in cow ghee, or Guggul (Boswellia serrata), or camphor. Pieces of dry cow-dung are arranged in the pot in such a way so that air can circulate and proper combustion is possible. Fire should be ready and fully ablaze at Agnihotra time. There should be no smoke. It should be a flaming fire.”

Why sunrise and sunset: These Agnihotra times are referred to as transitional moments (neither day nor night, neither light nor darkness). During these moments important changes occur in the earth atmosphere. A description is that a powerful stream of healing (vital life sustaining) energies similar in power to an atom bomb covers the earth at this time and through Agnihotra this energy is brought down or attracted to the earth. “Meanwhile an “aura energy field” is also created on the ground at the exact timing. The vital life energy from the atmosphere gets entangled in this local energy field and beneficial results are experienced”.

Sunrise/sunset timings for every city/town depend on the latitude and longitude of that area. The internet can help locate specific areas and time (may be searched through Agnihotra sites). “At sunrise, many fires and electricities, ethers, and more subtle energies emanating from the sun extend all the way to earth and produce a flood effect. The flood enlivens and purifies everything in the path…The morning Agnihotra mantra is the essence of that music (the quintessential sound of that flood). At sunset, the flood recedes…Agnihotra at sunset (where there is alarming growth of pathogens) has bacteriostatic effect”.

Why the pyramid and why copper: The inverted pyramid pot is considered a receiver of cosmic energy. Tremendous amounts of energy (subtle, cosmic, and electromagnetic) are gathered around the copper pyramid just at Agnihotra time. This energy field neutralizes the negative type of energy and reinforces the positive pattern of energy. “Copper pyramid of a prescribed size is recommended. This size is 14.5 cm x 24.5 cm at the top, 5.25 x 5.25 cm at the bottom and 6.5 cm in height. The pyramid shape of the pot is very important. Pyramid powers are very well known for the fact that the shape of the pyramid accumulates inside it electromagnetic waves or cosmic waves. “Interestingly, the word ‘pyramid’ originates from the Greek ‘pyr’ meaning FIRE and ‘amid’ meaning CENTRE. It denotes a specific shape having fire or cosmic energies at its centre. Copper is known to be the best conductor of heat and electromagnetic waves.

Why the cow dung? Fresh and burnt cow dung (its fumes and ash) contain tremendous active medicinal properties. They are proven to eradicate harmful bacteria and to control the dangerous effects of radiation. All the existing therapy systems of the Vedas support or recognize the medicinal properties present in the cow dung. Cow dung contains highly beneficial microorganisms and pure chlorophyll.

Role of the person: “When one performs Agnihotra, he acts as a biological transducer because fire is described as a special state of matter. There are various subtler levels of energies. The moment you perform Agnihotra, these various energies at lower levels get transformed and become beneficial to man.”.

Anyone can do the healing fires, with the exception of women during their days of menstruation (women’s energy at this time are earth-directed and will cancel the upward energy stream). Menstruating women are also not allowed to prepare or handle ghee, cow dung or any other materials needed for Agnihotra.

Effect on subtle energies: Agnihotra can help evoke or reinforce our own (natural psychic) powers or vital energy (also called subtle energy, vital energy, psychotronics, bioenergy, bioplasmic energy, and prana) to work. Kirlian photography (for aura) has made it possible to manifest or capture this aspect pictorially. Psychotronic devices also can demonstrate the changes in life energies. (Psychotronics refers to mind-induced actions such as dowsing, clairvoyance, telepathy, psychokinesis).

Performance of Agnihotra exactly synchronizies the momentarily activated period of sunrise/sunset and results in attracting a stream of vital life sustaining energies of the solar system towards the earth. The earth is cleansed of all pollutants and disease-causing elements.

The earth prana automatically gets purified which ultimately purifies the mind, and mind in turn heals the body (expand blood vessels, smoothen circulation). The entire nervous system gets rejuvenated and works more efficiently. The pores of the skin open during Agnihotra, thus medicinal air enters easily. Ash baths may also be taken (e.g. for softer and brighter skin).

The formative force of agni is sound which can be measured by an oscilloscope; a special sound is heard coming from the fire. Fire also reacts to sound.

Why the rice and ghee (offerings): Ghee or clarified butter acts as a carrier of subtle healing energies. In ancient times it was referred to as the mother of all medicine and has many therapeutic properties. It is also full of nutritional properties. When used in Agnihotra it transports the healing power of the Agnihotra ash exactly to the places where our body needs it. Cow’s ghee is considered by the Vedas to be the most important and essential ingredient for Agnihotra. It is the most unique matter, the nectar available to man on planet earth. It does not disappear or gets destroyed with burning but gets transmuted into healing gases.

Raw rice is the second or subsidiary ingredient prescribed along with cow’s ghee for the oblation. It is just right to use it being the most abundant (or most available) food grain for use for a global medicine. Use integral rice without husk (need only 2 pinchfuls using thumb, middle and ring finger of the right hand). “Unbroken, full rice grains and cow ghee (clarified butter, unsalted) without preservatives or chemicals are necessary [Best to use medicinal ghee; this where the ghee is heated and any water or other contaminants are then removed]. Only two pinches of rice grains, preferably brown rice, for each time of Agnihotra is required. Two drops of cow ghee is smeared to the rice and two offerings, one after the other, are offered at sunset time, while uttering the specified mantras. These two ingredients, rice and cow’s pure ghee, are essential and not replaceable.” They are not really burned in the fire but vaporized so they be aerodynamically transported to the surrounding environments. The thumb, middle and ring fingers are used to handle the rice for the fire.

The Mantras and their effect:

At Sunrise:
Suryaya Svaha. Suryaya Idam Na Mama
(Release the first portion of rice smeared with cow’s ghee in the fire)
Prajapataye Svaha. Prajapataye Idam Na Mama
(Release the second portion of rice smeared with cow’s ghee in the fire)
This completes the morning (sunrise) Agnihotra.

At Sunset:
Agnaye Svaha. Agnaye Idam Na Mama
(Release the first portion of rice smeared with cow’s ghee in the fire)
Prajapataye Svaha. Prajapataye Idam Na Mama
(Release the second portion of rice smeared with cow’s ghee in the fire)
This completes the evening (sunset) Agnihotra.

At the end of the mantras in each case concentrate on the fire until the offering is fully burnt. One may also utter their other favorite mantras, do their mediation or self-study. “After offerings are made one can sit silently and try to concentrate or meditate for as many minutes as one can spare. This helps in unburdening the mind and you feel more relaxed and energetic…”

The sound of the mantras uttered activate special vibrations that create certain atmospheres or effects. The Agnihotra mantras are the ‘original’ words in Sanskrit which cause specific vibrations useful for the mind and the atmosphere. They are ordained by the Vedas. Sanskrit is the mother of all languages but it is nobody’s mother-tongue. All languages contain words from Sanskrit . Sanskrit is built in such a way that virtually every word in the language can be derived from a root, a monosyllabic sound unit having a general significance in the sphere of action.” “Each verse is a formula, precisely measured, which carries the directions, the forces, and the illumination required for the work.” “The Agnihotra mantras are from the basic Vedic text handed down right from the time of Creation.”

All the alphabets of the Sanskrit language are endowed with special vibrational powers. Sanskrit is the mother of all existing languages. Their utterance in esoteric combination produces unique sound waves of magnificent vibrations (powerful beyond imagination) which spread in the surrounding environment as the oblations are offered. They must be uttered in their original form and not translated so the needed vibration is maintained. The translation however is as follows: “I am offering the oblation to Agni, Surya or Prajapati. This now belongs to Agni, Surya or Prajapati”. Idam na Mama means thy will be done not mine.

After the Agnihotra process is finished and the offerings are fully burnt the pyramid and its contents are left (normally) until the next Agnihotra time; then just before the fire the ash is removed very carefully, and placed in a container specially kept for storing the ash.

A Physical explanation of depolluting or cleansing effect of Agnihotra: “The colloidal molecule of cow ghee and cow manure could chelatingly (bind) attract and grab pollutants in the air, the way water is purified by being flocculated (coagulated). The seized molecules, as they settle on the ground, would alkalize the soil and if they come into contact with a plant they could stick to leaves and act as a time-release foliar nutrient. Physically, because of the ghee and the manure, the smoke could be electrically charged.” (Pat Flanagan)

Some applications in medicine and agriculture (cited from various literature)

1) Drug addiction
2) Alcohol addiction
3) Relief from anxiety and mental tension(and other neuropsychological parameters)
4) Reduction of microbial counts (atmosphere, lab. expts, wounds, etc.)
5) Homatherapy examples: sinusitis, skin fungus, non-healing wound, extreme menstrual bleeding, pain in kidney, gastritis, diarrhea, migraine, tonsillitis, congestions, cancer
6) Calming effect on children, better concentration, faster entry into deep meditation; removes aggression and enhances friendliness
7) Promotes family peace, harmony happiness, tranquility, contentment
8) Rapid seed germination (atmosphere and ash)
9) Improved rooting of cuttings (ash)
10) Increased crop yields (ash)
11) Bigger harvest, better food grain preservation (ash)
12) Better food quality (luscious, nutritious harvest)
13) Drought/frost resistance
14) Eradicate plagues and epidemics
15) Release of useful minerals (eg. Phosphate)
16) Early fruiting, better adaptation (eg. to warmer environment)
17) Termite control

“Anybody who has the will and desire to lead life successfully and in disciplined way can adopt this practice”. So Agnihotra can be practiced immediately!

Pam’s context:

“Human beings have crossed the threshold to the spiritual world unconsciously. This fact goes together with a symptom which is visible throughout humanity today and which can only be understood when conscious threshold experience has been gone through: namely, the experience of the separation of thinking, feeling and willing and the necessity of working anew on holding them together.
It is just this point that is the main characteristic of the scientific life of our century: We have a science that is proud of the fact that it has separated itself from feeling and willing. Separation of thinking, feeling and willing has taken place for a long time already – without its importance being recognized. On the other hand, this century has witnessed an ever more terrible world wars and unimaginable outbreaks of human brutality and bestiality. Here the will has clearly freed itself from feeling, and follows the body-bound urges and desires – uncontrolled by thinking and feeling.
The great problem of the present: Science without responsibility and a growing lovelessness in the social realm which is nothing more than the symptomatology of this separation of thinking, feeling and willing, and the incapacity of humanity to deal correctly with the fact”.
Rudolph Steiner (from Glockler, Debus and Heine, 1993. Ethical Considerations in Medicine

Prepared for a talk at Acacia Waldorf on March 1, 2007. Citation of references and other details have been omitted for brevity.

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