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Athirudra Maha Yagna in Hinduism – Athirudram

Athirudra Maha Yagna, or simply known as Athirudram, is a very rare yajna in Hinduism because of its complexity and magnitude.

This mammoth ritualistic function is performed by 121 Vedic scholars and their assistants at a specific time in a specially built yagasala.

What is Athi Rudra Maha Yagna?

In the Athi Rudra Maha Yagna, there will be 11 homa kundas and 11 Vedic scholars sitting around each Homa Kunda and performing homas by chanting Sri Rudram which is an important mantra in Yajur Veda. Performing homas in one homa kunda is known as Rudrakalasam. When it is performed in 11 homa kundas at a time is known as Maharudram. When this ritual is repeated for 11 days it becomes Athirudra Mahayagnam.

How Is Athi Rudra Maha Yagna Performed?

11 kalasams (pots) in each homa kunda are filled with water, milk, curd, ghee, honey, lime juice, gingelly oil, sugarcane juice, panchagavya, panchamrutham and ashwagandha water and sanctified by chanting mantras in the early hours daily. At the end of yagna in each day the kalasams will be taken in procession to sanctum of the deity in the temple and offered as abhisheka to the main deity

The yagna which starts at 5:30 in the morning will last for 4 hours. There will be 121 jeeva kalasams offered to the deity supported by 121 vella naivedyams daily making a total abhisheka of 1331 jeeva kalasams and 1331 Upastharanams of rice naivedyam in 11 days.

The yagna concludes with a Vasordhara, offering ghee in homa agni without break, on the final day. There will be laksharchana and special poojas to all upadevatas and also Sarpa bali and Nagapattu to Nagaraja.

Athi Rudra Maha yagna creates a holy atmosphere with the chanting of sacred mantras and different offerings in homas. It is performed for the well being of all living beings in the universe including plants and animals.

The 11 days of yagna usually have spiritual discourses, seminars, varied programs and performances of temple arts and art forms.

Usually, Maharudram is performed once in every 11 years and it will be followed by an Athi Rudra Maha yagna again.

This Yajna was last performed at Mammiyoor Shiva Temple near Guruvayoor Sri Krishna Temple in Kerala in January 1998.