CAN ALL OF US DO ASVAMEDHA YAGA?
Sri Chandramoulisvaraya Namah:
VEDA DHARMA SASTRA PARIPALANA SABHA (Regd.)
Publication No. 42
Can all of us perform Asvamedha yaga? One, who is born as a kshatriya, is coronated as king in a kingdom, goes out and conquers all kingdoms, is attached to dharma and is a great warrior is eligible to perform Asvamedha yaga and secure the merit of that yaga, which is the greatest of all merits.
It is stated in the names of Ambika listed in Sri Lalita Trisati Archana that among worships of Ambika, worship by one who has performed Asvamedha yaga is very meritorious. That name is ‘Hayamedhasamarchitaayai’. Is this Asvamedha yaga merit attainable to one who is born in varnas other than kshatriya, is poor and is devoid of training in warfare and Vedas and Sastras?
There is an ancient adage which says: ‘Anaathapreta samskaraat Asvamedhaphalam labhet’- ‘one will get the merit of Asvamedha by performing samskaras for an orphaned corpse’. We should become very happy if we happen to see uncared-for corpses, whatever be the caste of that person. We should be happy in that we are fortunate to get samskaras performed by proper persons in appropriate manner. To permit orphaned corpses to be buried by government servants within our knowledge is a sin. We also lose the rare opportunity of getting the merit of a great Asvamedha yaga.
Deaths of orphans occur frequently in our country in hospitals and prisons. Those of other religions (Christians, Muslims et al) take from such places the corpses of persons belonging to their religions and arrange samskaras for them. Generally the orphaned corpses of persons belonging to our faith are buried by government servants without any samskaras.
There is no greater sin and disgrace than this to people of our faith. It is the duty of everyone of us to get samskaras done for any orphaned corpse we come across, by appropriate persons in the deceased’s varna in the relevant Sastraic manner, if necessary by donating money. If we are unable to do this act equivalent to Asvamedha yaga singly on our own, we should take 2-3 persons with us and complete this task of merit. When such deaths occur in prisons and hospitals, four persons should jointly apply and make sincere efforts to get the corpse and get the samskaras done by persons of the deceased’s varna in a proper manner. Whatever be the caste of the deceased, be it tribal or dalit, we should get the samskaras done by persons of that caste. Whoever does this samskara directly, he should do this meritorious task without expecting any monetary help. If we do not get persons of such positive temperament in an emergency, we should get the samskaras done by the people of the deceased’s varna even by making monetary offer. To remain indifferent in this matter is an unforgivable offence in our faith. Each one of us should come forward urgently to remove this deficiency. We should surrender the Asvamedha merit we acquire at the feet of Ambika. This Asvamedha service is verily the foundation of true brotherhood among people of all varnas and asramas by the grace of Sri Matha, who is denoted as ‘Varnasramavidhayini’ in Lalita sahasranamam and growth of love, wealth and grace in the world in general.
VEDA DHARMA SASTRA PARIPALANA SABHA
Translated by: P R Kannan, Navi Mumbai
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