The Blessing , Aaseervatha Mantra states,
Sree varchasvam ayushyam aarogyam maavithaath
Dhaanyam Dhanam pasum bahuputra laabham
Satha samvathsarm dheeragamaayuhu.
The blessings start with auspicious life.
The rest come later.
Once born it is the desire of one is to live as long as possible.
Dheergayus means a life span of 120 years in Kali Yuga, though it is mentioned as Satha Samvathsaram( 100 years)
Life depends on , contrary to what many think, wholly external forces not in our control,be it the air we beathe, water ,earth,fire and the ether.
We take these for granted.
We would appreciate them only in their absence.
The human body is made up of the five elements that make up the Cosmos.
We are nothing but a reflection, photocopy of the Cosmis in miniature.
One is likely to lead a longer life if these five elements in the Cosmos and in our bodies sync.
If there is a variation, one falls sick and in serious maladjustments one leaves the body.
While we strive to be tuned into Nature’s Rhythm, Nature should also cooperate.
That is not in our hands.
As we are nothing but the Cosmos in a small scale, our chitta ( higher plane over mind and intellect) should will for longevity.
By self tuning the Chitta one controls the Cosmos and its Principles.
This is Yoga.
This fine tuning can be done by chanting, listening to mystically locked sounds called Mantras.
And the propitiator of life , Agni, Fire carries the power of the Mantras to the other elements ,which being the same for us and the Cosmos ignites our Chitta.
And longevity is assured if the Homa Rites are performed correctly, as prescribed in the texts.
There are two types of Homas for Longevity.
The Ayush Homa and
The Mrutyanjaya Homa.
Though they seem to address the same issue, Longevity there is a minor differnce.
While Ayush Homa increases the Life span in general, the Mrutunjaya Homa addresses the issue of ill health and diseases.
It is one thing to attain Longevity but Disease free Life is another..
It is advisable to perform both at the same time.
It is ordained in the Smriti that these Homas are to be performed every year for a child upto to the age of Five.
And one can have this performed any time in during one’s life till one reaches Sixty.
For them these are performed in Sashtiapthapoorthy and Sathabhishekam.
Maha Mruthyunjaya Homam is dedicated to Lord Shiva to avoid untimely death. The Mruthyunjaya Homam is performed to achieve Jaya or Victory over Mritya or death. The object of worship of this homa is Lord Shiva. One of the synonyms of Lord Shiva is Mrityu. Mrityu which means death of the death or the destroyer of death. During this homa one chants 21 mantras. The prominent offerings in this homa are durva grass and an herb called amrita.
The former is famous for purifying blood and the latter is used as a medicine for in a, it is believed that this homam bestows longevity on the performer. The hymns are devoted curable diseases like arbuda or cancer. Since these are used as offerings in this hom to Mrityu, the God of death, praying for long life. These hymns are used in the purnahuti or the final offering in the famous Soma sacrifice. This homa also alleviates Mrityu dosha or untimely death.Dedicated to Lord Shiva to avoid untimely death The Mrityunjaya Homa is performed to achieve Jaya or Victory over Mritya or death.