Yathi Mahalaya is observed during Pitru Paksha on Bhadrapada Bahula Dwadashi is meant for Yathigalu. In 2017, Yathi Mahalaya is on September 17. On this day, Hastodaka will be given to all the Yathigalu who have entered Vrundavana. On this day, Pitru Paksha Shradh is not to be done for other forefathers. (Please note this custom is more famous in
South India especially with some Hindu communities in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh).
We have to do Yathi Dwadashi shraddha to get ourselves free from Yathi Runa that is why it is called as ‘Yathi Dwadashi’. These yathigalu having prepared so many shastra granthas, vyaakhyaa, Teeka granthas has helped us a lot in learning ancient granthas. So, we have Runa to them – yathi runa. That is why we have to Yati Mahalaya.
This shradha is to be done by Yathiputras only. Who are yathiputraas? – Those who have Grantha/Shastra Runa from the yathigalu are termed as “Yathiputraas.”
Yathi Shraddha does not mean that we need to give panda pradhana to yathigalu. This is annasantarpana/hastodaka to yathigalu in the form of bhojana to brahmanas santarpane.
Written by Narahari Sumadhwa