The month Ashadam is considered as Shoonya Masam. Auspicious functions like Marriage, Gruha Pravesham, Upanayanam are not performed in this month. In some of the southern Indian states, traditional families not allowed the newly married couple to stay together during Ashadam. The reason is India, being agricultural based country, by Ashadam rainy season starts and people are busy with sowing and other agricultural works. Ashadam considered as sacred month for performing spiritual activities
Turmeric/Haldi the auspicious herb symbolizes purity, fertility and prosperity. The colour yellow also represents chastity and sensuality. Wearing dried turmeric roots keeps evil spirits away and brings good luck. Applying turmeric paste to the body makes the skin glow and protects from harmful bacteria.
In Hindu religious tradition, applying Kumkum (vermilion) on the forehead is a holy tradition. Ehen applied especially on the forehead between the eye brows – a point of immense power and virtue, and also dwelling place of our mind which controls the entire body. Because of this a great sanctity is attached to it and we honour it by applying tilak/Kumkum.
In both the Telugu speaking states and in Karnataka, women apply mehndi made from freshly picked henna or Gorintaku leaves to their palms and feet. Of course it enhances the beauty of women, being a traditional medicinal herb, it protects the palms and feet from the infections which are common in rainy season. Applying mehndi also minimizes stress.
Devotees observe Upavasa or fasting on many auspicious days. When we go by the literal meaning of the word Upavasa – here ‘upa’ means with or together and ‘vasa’ means staying or residing. Upavasa denotes staying with the Almighty or remembering the God in continuous meditation by controlling Indriyas (the sensory and motor organs.
Lakshmi Tulasi (available on the banks of River Ganga), Krishna Tulasi (available on the banks of river Yamuna) and Swetha Tulasi. Which ever the Tulasi, praying with utmost devotion will give all the benefits.
Annaprasana is a ritual of feeding solid food (Annam) or rice inititaon, to the infant for the first time and to be continued. Age of the child For Girl Child: Best to perform in in the fifth month after birth. - if not possible in fifth month, any base no. of (7,9,11) month within the completion of first year For Boy child: Best to perform in in the sixth month after birth - if not possible in fifth month, any even no. of (6,8,10) month within the completion of first year Where to perform Shall be performed in a temple or maternal home of child's mother. The ritual starts by Ganesh Puja and continue by performing puja to ishta diva or family God.
Abhyang snan is the procedure of massaging the body from head to toe using oil and bathing using natural skin benefiting items like multani mitti, green gram powder or chana dal powder and turmeric. Abhyanga snan provides you with numerous health benefits. It starts by massaging head and body with sesame oil. It keeps the body stay warm and lowers the amount of pitta in the body. It also increases circulation of blood and massaging your head with warm oil relieves you from stress and calms your mind. Applying oil nourishes, moisturises and cleanse skin of environmental pollutants and toxins and also removes dead skin cells. As sesame oil penetrate deep in to the skin, it gives a natural glow and smooth skin. Abhyanga snan stimulates the nerves and also aids sensory motor integration and thus helps prevent neurological problems. Also, the gentle oil massage relaxes the muscles thereby strengthening them.
Cow Ghee is the best option for lighting Deep/Diya/Deepam in front of God. In case, ghee is not available, sesame oil is another option. In the non availability of sesame oil, groundnut oil or caster oil (Amudam) is another option.
Ashadha/Ashadhi Ekadashi/Shayani ekadashi/tholi ekadashi ( the eleventh day of shukla paksha or waxing moon period) is dedicated to Lord Vishnu. From this day to Karthika Ekadashi ( the eleventh day of shukla paksha or waxing moon period), the four months, which also called as Chaturmas, Mahavishnu goes for devine sleep on sesha sayan in ksheera sagaram (ocian of milk). On this day, devotees wake up early in the morning, take holy bath and perform puja for Lord Vishnu on this day. They observe upavasam ( fasting) on this day. This fasting will be broken on next day (on dwadashi, the twelth day) after performing Parana. It is believed that who perform this festival with utmost devotion, will be blessed with happy, successful and tranquil life.