Mahalaya Amavasya,Tharpana Explained..

English: Lunar libration. see below for more d...
Movement of the Moon.

Mahalaya Paksha . 30th September 2016,Friday.

Pitru Paksha 2016 Dates

Shradh Date Day
Purnima Shradh 2016 September 16 Friday
Pratipada Shradh 2016 September 17 Saturday
Dwitiya Shradh 2016 September 18 Sunday
Tritiya Shradh 2016/Chaturthi Shradh 2016 September 19 Monday
Panchami Shradh 2016 September 20 Tuesday
Shashthi Shradh 2016 September 21 Wednesday
Saptami Shradh 2016 September 22 Thursday
Ashtami Shradh 2016 September 23 Friday
Navami Shradh 2016 September 24 Saturday
Dashami Shradh 2016 September 25 Sunday
Ekadashi Shradh 2016 September 26 Monday
Dwadashi Shradh 2016 September 27 Tuesday
Trayodashi Shradh 2016 September 28 Wednesday
Chaturdashi Shradh 2016 September 29 Thursday
Sarva Pitru Amavasya Shradh 2016 September 30 Friday
Nana/ Nani Shradh 2016 October 1 Saturday



The period between New Moon and Full Moon in Simha Maasa (approximately in September)for 15 days is named as Mahalaya Paksha.

Lunar Calendar of Hindus divides a month with reference to the waxing and waning of the Moon,into two.(for details on Hindu/Indian Calculation of Time’ please read my Blog’TIME-Non-Linear Theory,filed in Astrophysics).

The waxing period is called Sukla Paksha(Sukla in Sanskrit means White,  here indicates the waxing of the Moon),ending in Full Moon, Pounima, also called Pournamasya.

The waning period is called Krishna Paksha( Krishna means Black),culminating in New Moon called Amavasya.

Each Paksha has 14 Days ,one Amavasya and one Pournima makes a Month.

One is expected to perform the duties due to the Departed daily, that is do Tharppana daily.

This applies all Castes, Brahmana,Kshatriya ,Vaisya and Sudra.

We have conveniently omitted to follow the Sastras, by saying that the Srardha and Tharppana  are to be performed only by  Brahmins .

We also have made it a habit of performing Tharppana only on Amavasya,Beginning of the New Month,Mahalaya ,Aadi ,Grahana( Eclipses)  periods and Srardha Thithi.

This Behavior is not  sanctioned by The Sastras.

Of all The Tharppanas ,Mahalaya Tharppana is very Special.

This period falls in The Dakshinayana-movement of the Sun to Southern Latitudes ,this is for six months.

This begins from Adi and extends up to Makara Sankaranthi ( January 14)

In the Dakshinayana,the Devas and Pitrus(ancestors) are said to be asleep and the wake up in Uttarayana (from January 14 for six months )

We are expected to perform Thrappana during the entire Paksha starting from Amavasya in Simha Masa till Pournima- for 14 days.

The habit of doing only on Maha Barani,Maha Navami etc are procedures we have invented ourselves because of our reluctance/laziness.

One has to perform Sandhya Vandana-Madhyanniham,follow it up with Brahma Yagnam, then do the Tharppana daily on all the fourteen days.

At the beginning, changing Upaveedham is recommended.

Tharppna/Srardha should be performed only after 12 Noon-after Madhyanniha.

It is highly recommended to feed the Hungry-not necessarily Brahmins.

Better locate some one who is hungry as you go out on the Day, take him / her to a hotel and feed them.

Avoid paying cash.

Ideal would be to feed the hungry at your Home.One might also gift people who are needy with new clothes,Foot wear,umbrella and winter clothes.

Feed the cows and Dogs.

Benefits of Tharppana/Srardha.

Sastras  declare that there is no atonement for failing to perform the Tharppana and Srardha.

Of all the curses, Piru Saapa (curse), along with Sumangali Saapa (curse by women who expired when husbands  are alive) are the Deadliest.

Those who perform these Karmas will be blessed with Children, Grand Children. Wealth;will be free of chronic diseases,irritating circumstances and inexplicable problems in the family.

If the ancestors Bless us( we are here because of them), God follows suit.

If parents curse us,(which a parent rarely does) , even God will let us down.


10 thoughts on “Mahalaya Amavasya,Tharpana Explained..

  1. Sir,
    The tharpanam is to be done prior to brahmayagnam after madhyani kam and not after brahmayagnam as written. Brahmayagnam is the concluding ritual.
    Secondly there is no expectation of any benefits of doing this. Like parents feed their children because only they can and must out of the love, so too in case of tharpanam,you do this out of love and but any expectation or fear.


    1. I have taken reference from Anna Subrahmanya Iyer(RK Mutt Sandhya Vandana) for Brahma Yagnya.Brahma Yagnya is a Nithya Karma and as such has to be performed daily.Tharpana is to be performed after this.And Tharapana is to be performed after Madhyannika as you have pointed out.Please send sources/links for yor information to effect changes in the Post Karma is to be performed as it is mandatory..Regds.


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