Havan is one of the ten positive virtues or niyam that is prescribed for the devotee whose aspiration is to draw closer to the Divine, ultimately acquiring oneness with him. It is also one way of performing Deva yagya, one of man’s five daily duties, according to the tenets of Sanatan Dharma.
What is havan?
This is an age-old Hindu ritual in which offerings of ghee, googol, sugar and other saamaagri (itmes) are offered into the sacred fire to the accompaniment of Sanskrit mantras.
Why should havan be performed?
Havan has a purifying effect on both the devotee who performs this sacrifice as well as one’s environment. Through the chanting of mantras and offerings into the fire, one’s chakras are re-energised, creating a revitalised and rejuvenating effect for both the body and mind. Positive thoughts, words and actions then pave the way for further success.
The combined effect of the materials, when mixed and used in the havan produces a fumigatory response to the atmosphere, purifying the environment around. Negative energies are dispelled and a protective shield is built around the house where the ritual is performed, thereby warding off any untoward energies. This induces peace, prosperity and good health, conditions which augur well for clarity of thought, increased power of discrimination and improved usage of mental faculties. The result, then, is success in all undertakings.The process of bhoot-shuddhi or purification of the tattwas or elements takes place within the individual who performs havan, thereby transforming one’s thought-patterns. Qualities of anger, rash and irrational thinking are replaced by calm, tranquil and controlled attitudes. The individual acquires greater control of his life, which offers wider scope for daily success.
Scientific experiments have proven that havan destroys harmful bacteria in the atmosphere. A scientist named Tautilk proved that a patient stricken with typhoid disease can be freed of this scourge if he is exposed to the smoke of havan for half hour. In addition, performing this sacrifice of havan is also one way of burning away one’s karma.
When should havan be performed?
Ideally, this practice should be carried out daily. In every home havan should be done at least once per week by all members of the family. The early hours of the morning are most conducive for all religious actions as the atmosphere is charged with praan (energy) at that time. However, this time may not suit the needs of all families. As such, the practice may be done at a time that is best suited for the devotee.
How should havan be performed?
A complete guide on the preparations and performing of havan is provided in our publications, Devi, Shiva and Soorya Upaasanaa.
The performance of havan, while essential in the spiritual evolution of every devotee, is also important in fostering family togetherness. Through the practice of mantra recitation and the various activities involved in the physical preparations for havan, devotees develop a greater appreciation for the traditional religious practices of Sanathana Dharma. All of this helps to build Hindu pride and resilience.
Through this powerful sacrifice, one is protected and shielded from all untoward elements. As such, the flames of the sacred fire should burn brightly in every home every day of the week.