Pithru (Pitru or Pithra) Dosha(m) – Curses of Forefathers, Cause, Nature, Effect and Cure (Remedies):
Let us discuss in this presentation, the cause, nature, effect and cure of Pitru Dosha.
As per Vedic Astrology scriptures, Pithru Dosha can be deduced from the birth chart (horoscope) of an individual. By analysing the afflictions to Luminaries (Sun and Moon) by nodes (Rahu and Kethu) and other malefics in the 5th and 9th Houses and afflictions of their lords.
Cause of Pithru Dosha:
1. Harming, torturing, injuring or killing living creatures for selfish reasons; Killing a foetus (abortion) in a womb.
2. All greedy acts to deprive or deceive other shareholders to misappropriate ancestral or public wealth
3. Providing or abetting false witness and misrepresenting for personal gain/ pleasure/ vengeance/ benefits.
4. Illegitimate / hurtful or improper relationship with married or unmarried women/men, or deceiving a women after enjoying her. This act when done consciously or unconsciously will attract the Dosha.
5. Being instrumental and responsible directly or indirectly for breaking families, couples, brothers and /or sisters, partners, separating parents from children and being an agent for any form of separation between cordial family members. In general people involved in malicious gossip, divisive talks, will experience more suffering in life.
6. Cheating, grabbing of wealth, lands and properties of others through immoral methods, by force, or by false promise, or by impersonation.
The above acts performed by anyone consciously or unconsciously (with or without awareness) will bring strong indelible bad Karmas to the individual’s credit, which cannot be removed or erased by simply implementing or performing prayachithas or remedial measures such as offering pooja, fire rituals or homams, fasting, visiting important temples, donation and materialistic offerings, conducting dhanam, tapas or yagna.
These bad karmas or Doshas are nullified only after sufficient suffering by an individual for a length of time undergoing analogous or equal pain, suffering, and physical or mental agony during the present life or that comes after this.
The form, nature and type of re-birth are granted based on the intensity and quantity of good and bad karmas earned and carried by the subtle and causal bodies of the individual soul. If the Jivatma (the individual’s) soul has more good karmic deeds to its account, it will be granted a birth in a family and to parents under auspicious circumstances, where there is no or less bearable pain and more of fulfilment or happiness. Similarly if the Jivatma with a lot of bad karmic deeds to its credit account, will be granted a birth in a family and circumstances filled with sorrows, sadness, grief, illiteracy, poverty, suffering causing unbearable pains, physical and mental agony to the soul.
We have to understand from the above, that God does not play dice or marbles. He does not impart pain, agony or suffering to any Jivatma. The rebirth status is chosen by the individual soul by its own deeds (Karmas) by using (or abusing) the free-will.
The mismatch of timings in different births or different stages of life, through generation and fruition of karmic seeds create the Maya or mystery in the minds of ignorant humans, leading to resentments, lamentation and further generation of karmic seeds in a cyclic manner.
Every human must understand these fundamentals and recognise the truth and thereby should live a life in accordance with Righteousness or Dharma and therefore in accordance with God’s Will. Otherwise, his life will be a cyclic journey for millions of years with series of untold pain and suffering in a state of limbo.
Nature of Pithru Doshams:
Pithru Doshans can be categorized into 6 types as classified below:
1. The curse(s) of the departed souls on their own family, when the family members do not observe the basic requirements of doing periodic yearly, monthly and occasional rituals of Srardham, Tharpanam for their ancestors.
2. The strong curses and ill wishes of others be it known / unknown entity, who were basically affected negatively by the actions of our family members living now or departed ancestors.
3. Curses from old people of our family or parents who were deserted by the younger generation
4. The ghosts and dissatisfied souls of our family members who had met unnatural death in the past and who were denied food and water by lack of of periodic rituals by descendants.
5. Curses and Vows of departed ancestors (mainly women) who were tortured, deserted or ill-treated by their family members/ spouse/ relatives,
6. The curses and ill wishes of those departed members of society – affected by the bad actions of our family member (ancestors), contributing to collective consciousness responsible for the suffering of those departing without happiness.
Indications or Effects (or symptoms or damages) of Pithru Dosha:
1. Delay in marriage or settlement in family life or career.
2. Repeated divorces, failed marriages in a family.
3. Discord or disharmony between married partners / couples.
4. Women not attaining puberty in time or continuous menstrual troubles and pains
5. Delay or denial in getting children.
6. Many family members remaining as bachelors or spinsters
7. Abortions and miscarriages
8. No progeny or birth of children or sons.
9. Birth of physically or mentally disabled or handicapped children in a family.
10. Unnatural / Untimely deaths, accidents, mishaps happening in a family quite often
11. Frequent robbery, fire accidents, thefts and repairs and breakdowns in the house.
12. Children becoming abnormal resulting in weird physical or mental behaviour and unsound thinking.
13. Sudden loss of wealth and health
14. Blocking Financial or material progress
15. Blocking higher Education or Knowledge.
These indications can be verified from the horoscope of an individual based on certain planetary configurations and afflictions to houses and planets as indicated in the beginning of this discussion.
Indications of Pithru Dosha in a Horoscope:
1. Malefics in 5th or 9th house.
2. Debilitated 5th Lord or Sun or Moon with more afflictions to them.
3. Sun, Saturn, descending Moon, Mars, Rahu, bad Mercury and Kethu in the 5th house.
4. The 5th house Lord gets debilitated or no strength with malefic aspect.
5. The Sun or moon with Rahu or Kethu in 5th or 9th or hemmed between malefics.
6. The 9th Lord is debilitated with Rahu or Kethu.
7. Lord of 5th house either being associated with malefic planets or staying in a malefic house.
8. 5th house and / or 9th house occupied by inimical planets with malefics,
9. 5th Lord is debilitated in Navamsa or weakened.
10. Transit at time of birth of 5th Lord or 9th Lord in the Star of a malefic planet or traversing in the 22nd star/bad division from the birth Star.
11. If the 5th lord is affected by Thithi Sunyam.
12. Association of 5th house Lord and 9th house Lord and / or Luminaries with Raghu/Kethu in any house.
13. All the above indications as per Jaimini Rasi Dhristi also contribute to the Doshas.
14. Absence of Kula Vriddhi Yoga through absence of natural benefics – Jupiter, Venus and Mercury in 5th house from Lagna or Moon along with other afflictions in divisional charts.
The above combinations can be graded as a series of mathematical probabilities of Pithru Dosha in an ascending order of strength namely, very weak, mild, weak, strong, very strong and full scale Doshas. The intuitive astrologer with the help of scriptures and by the Grace of his Guru and Divine can delineate or explain the nature, impact and limitations of the Pithru Dosham and can also recommend an appropriate or probable remedies in many cases.
As the 5th house is a pivotal house in a chart indicating, fortune, poorvapunyam, children, and other honors, affliction to 5th house will bring unhappiness and sorrowful nature for the person owing to past karma.
We see many people getting unhappiness through children or family members mainly caused by one or more of the above combinations.
Therefore it is important to:
1. Be kind, loving, caring and attentive to Parents, parents in laws, and other family members when they are alive and available to us as it is very costly and sometimes impossible to rectify these curses or doshas.
2. Perform periodic rituals of Tharapanam, Srardham and associated charities on allocated days by Scriptures.
3. To abstain from pleasures and enjoyments on the days of Tharpanam and Srardham. Avoid non-vegetarian food and alcohol during Amavasya days,srardh and tharpanam days, for appropriate blessings from ancestors.
4. To respect and implement the guidelines of Scriptures and Guru with devotion.
5. Respect the sentiments of all family members irrespective of their reciprocal attitude for your own good.
Remedies (Cure) for Pitru Dosha:
Srardh has to be performed regularly by anyone who has lost a parent. It is more beneficial if it is performed jointly by all the siblings in one place. When it is difficult to jointly perform, youngsters should take the blessings from the eldest member of the family on srardh day by either meeting or calling over the phone. The family members should recall the memories of the past with the departed souls. This reiterates the importance of maintaining good relationships among siblings.
The reasons for any delay in the marriage of family members or in getting children, losing children or early premature death of family member(s) are all the results of inadequate pitru bala (strength).Our ancestors are on par with the deities. Even what the Gods or deities cannot do, our ancestors (pitrus) can do promptly and speedily for you. Have you ever felt that you are repetitively or continuously suffering for no apparent reason? You are a pious, God-fearing person and honest person. You do not indulge in unwholesome deeds, back-biting or wrongdoing consciously, yet you or your family member(s) are always undergoing trials, tribulations, sufferings and problems of some kind. Vedic astrology has a perfect explanation and answer to this. The souls of our ancestors and departed forefathers have not attained peace (shanti).
If our ancestors have, knowingly or unknowingly, done some mistakes or committed sins, they are signposted in our horoscopes as pitra dosh or pitra rina; their offspring and their children are destined to suffer from the bad effects. Due to the malefic effects of the afflicted planets, the beneficial planets cannot give favourable results.
There are certain recommended austerities and observations as per scriptural directives during Pitr Paksha (15 day cycle from new moon to full moon is called paksha), Additionally, there is also the Krishna Paksha cycle from full moon to new moon and Sukla Paksha cycle from new moon to full moon, for both men and women of all communities (for those who have lost at least one parent).
The austerities include:
• Avoid eating onion, garlic, food from restaurants, processed foods, mushroom, and drumstick (for vegetarians).
• Avoid eating non-vegetarian food and if possible all items given above (in case of non-vegetarians).
• Avoiding shaving for the entire fortnight till Mahalaya Amavasya. Obviously, this may not be possible for everyone due to our current lifestyle and other restrictions (such as an office policy which requires executives in marketing or sales or with big responsibilities to be clean- shaven). Even in these cases, shaving should be avoided at least on the thithis of one’s ancestors.
• Perform obsequies (sradh) on the thithi of the ancestor’s death to the extent possible or at least offer anna dhanam (offer food) to poor persons or priests as per one’s convenience. (On this day, you should not shave as already stated.)
• Abstain from sexual relationship during this fortnight as a mark of respect to the pitrs.
• Abstain from unholy habits. Preferably avoid fun and recreation during this period.
• Recite the Garuda Puraanam (depicting the passage of a soul), the Nachiketa story from the Kathopanishad (which contains the Yama Gita, where Lord Yama’s elucidation of the soul’s journey that was first revealed to the devoted Nachiketaa), Sri Vishnu Sahasranama, Sri Rudram Chamakam and the Gangaa Avatarana chapter from Srimad Vaalmiki Ramayan. These recitals are said to grant satisfaction to the pitrs and thereby ensure their blessings upon us. In fact, these recitals can be done even by those whose parents are alive. (The other rituals such as tarpanam should not be observed by those whose parents are alive.).
These are auspicious and do not come under the category of sradh, but at the same time they have the potency to give peace and happiness to the souls of ancestors of one’s dynasty when recited.
At least once in lifetime, perform srardh/pitru yagna along with tila and mrutunjaya japa and visit places of pilgrimage such as Rameswaram, Avinthapuri, Maya, Kasi, Gaya, Dwaraka, Tirupalani or Devipattinam. If possible, the entire family, spanning two generations, should travel together to these places and perform the rituals.
Do not eat outside during srardh days and Amavasya days. Eat only satvik food the whole day (preferably Jain food; rice to be had for lunch only). This is advised for all family members though srardh or tarpanam may not be applicable to all.
Following days are selected by orthodox Hindus for the ancestestral worship ceremony:
It is called Tarpanam or Srardham. In the olden days they were actually using fire to do this. Later it was simplified with the use of Sesame seeds and water (Tarpanam means – which pleases; Srardham – is that which is done with Faith or Sincerity)
As per scriptures Tarpanam to be offered 96 times in a year on 96 days (also known as Shannavati Tarpanam) as given below:
12 New Moon Days in year called Amavasya
12 First days of 12 traditional months
12 Ashtaka days (Krishna Paksha Ashtami, Navami, Dasami of four months Margasirsha to Phalguna (3 X4 =12)
16 Mahalaya Paksha ( When the sun enters Kanya Rasi (Virgo in Hindu calendar, the ceremony is done during the dark period / Krishna Paksha)
14 Manvathi Srardh days (Calendar shows the 14 Manvantara days. This is done to honour the rule of 14 Manus)
4 Yuga Adhi Srardham (This is to mark the beginning of 4 eras)
26 Vyadipada-Vaidruti-vishkambam (This is based on two of the 27 Yogas; 13+13=26 days are shown in traditional Panchang/calendars).These 96 days, considering practical constraints of modern times have been reduced to a minimum of about 30 – 42 days for Tharpanam including New moon (Amavasya) days, Mahalaya Paksha, Uttarayana and Dhaksinayana punya kala beginning (compulsorily) and optionally Masasangrama days (first day of 12 traditional months).
Remedial Temples for Capital Penance of sins caused by omissions of ancestral worship.
The following temples are remedial temples to remove considerably the sins caused by omission of ancestral worship by an individual, following repentance and determination to continue the ancestral worship through regular Tharpanams and Srardhams as discussed above without break from thereafter visiting these temples.
1. Performing Tila Homam and Mrutunjaya Homams at Rameswaram
2. Thryambakeswar Temple (Maharastra)
3. Performance of Sraddh at One of the holy places of namely, Gaya, Kasi, Rameswaram, Avinthapuri, Maya, Madhura, Dwaraka, Thrupulani, Devipattinam, Ayodhya, Badrinath, Haridwar and Kedarnath.
4. Sri Kalahasthi (certainly if the dosha caused by nodes)
5. Thilatharpanapuri Shivji Temple near Mayuram, Tamilnadu
6. Sri Vanchiyam Temple, near Thiruvarur, Tamilnadu
7. Gokarna in Karnataka
8. Thiruvengadu Shivji Temple, near Poompuhar, Tamilnadu
9. Seshampadi near Kumbakonam, Tamilnadu
10. Chandod near Vadodara, Gujarat.
11. Kuke, Subramanya Temple, (Aslesha Bali, Sarpa Samskara and Naga Prathishtai recommended if Pithru Dosha also associated with Sarpa Dosha)
It is also stated in scriptures strong Pitru Dosha occurs if any unnatural death had taken place in the past 7 generations from father side and in the past 4 generations from mother side causing various obstacles as enumerated in the early parts of this presentation on this subject.
May you All perform the Tharpanam, Srardhams regularly and receive full Blessings of your manes or ancestors for trouble-free peaceful and prosperous living by the Grace of GF. Om Tat Sat….