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Dakshina In Hinduism – Gift - Money Offered On Completion Of Hindu Ritual

Dakshina in Hinduism is a gift or money offered to the conductor at the completion of a Hindu religious ritual. In Rig Veda, it is noted that one who gives dakshina earns the highest merit. In a metaphorical extension, it goes on to say that one who gives a horse will move with the sun, one who gives gold shall never be in want, one who gives clothes shall live long. This is also mentioned in the Satapatha Brahmana.

In Aitareya Brahmana, it is said that if dakshina is not given, the yajna will not produce any fruit for the performer.

When dakshina is understood to mean direction, it represents the right or southern direction.

There is a story in Hindu scriptures associated with Dakshina.

Once demigods and celestial beings performed a sacrifice but it proved fruitless. They went to Brahma, who meditated on Narayana. With the help of Lakshmi, Narayana created a woman, Dakshina, and gave her as daughter to Prajapati, who in turn gave her to Yajna Purusha in marriage.

Dakshina and Yajna Purusha had a child, Phala (fruit or benefit), through whom Yajna Purusha fulfilled the desires of celestial beings.

Dakshina is thus regarded as a daughter of Prajapati (one who takes care of the people) and the wife of Yajna.