Markandeya Puranam

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MADALASA said: – The duties of a householder are threefold namely Nitya (daily) Naimittika (occasional) and Nityanaimittika. Hear them, O my son. (1) The ceremonies relating to the live sacrifices described to you by me before, are called Nitya. The ceremonies that are performed on the birth of a son as well as others are called Naimittika. Sraddhas on Parva days are regarded by the learned as Nityanaimittika. The ceremonies, that are performed on the birth of a son, should also be performed in due order on the occasion of his wedding. (2-4)

In the ceremony called Nandimukha the departed manes should be properly worshipped. Sitting with his face turned towards the north or the east the sacrificer should, with his mind concentrated, offer Vindas (balls) of barley and curds. Some people hold that this ceremony is without Vaishwadeva. (5-6) In this ceremony after having circumambulated them a couple of Brahmanas should be worshipped. This is trailed Vriddhi Sraddha Naimittika. Hear now of the Aurddha dehika Ekoddishta which should be performed on behalf of a person on the day of his demise. In this no worship of the deities, no invocation or oblation to fire is to be made; only Kusha should be used in it. Near the leavings a Pinda should be offered to the spirit of the departed person and remembering his name one should pour water with sesamum seeds. This should be thrown at the spot where the Kusa made Brahmana has been left, saying: “May this be without deterioration and may he be gratified with it and they will say. ‘We have been gratified.'” Every month of the year this ceremony should be performed by men. When the year is over or when an opportunity presents itself Sapindakarana ceremony should be performed. I shall describe to you the rules of this ceremony. (7-12) In it there is no worship of the deities, no offering of oblation to fire and no invocation is to be made. Only an Arghya and Kusha are to be offered. Placing Pinda and water in an opposite direction he should feed an odd number of Brahmanas. (13) The peculiar characteristic of this ceremony is that additional rites should be performed every month. Hear with attention, I shall describe this to you. (14) My son, four vessels, containing sesamum seeds and fragrant water, should be kept – three for the ancestral manes and another for the departed. (15) An Arghya as well as the vessel intended for the departed should be washed over the three vessels and then reciting the Mantras Tesamana, the ceremony should be concluded. (16) This Ekoddishta has also been laid down for women. But when they have no son they are not entitled to Sapindakarana. (17) Men should perform Ekoddishta every year for females; as in the case of men it should be duly performed on the day of her death. (18) In the absence of a son (the ceremony) should be performed by those entitled to offer watery oblation. Those that are a mother’s Sapindas and those that are a mother’s Sahodakas should act according to these injunctions; and a person, who is without a son, should have his rites performed by his daughter’s son. A daughter’s son should thus perform the ceremony for his maternal grandfather. (19-20) This rite is called Dwyamusyayana. A mother’s father and a father’s father should be properly worshipped by Naimittika Sraddha. (21) In the absence of any other relatives the wives should perform this rite for their husbands without any Mantra. In the absence of wife a king should have the obsequies of the deceased properly performed by one of his own relatives or persons of the same caste. For the king is the friend of all orders. (22-23) I have thus described to you, my son, the Nitya and Naimittika rites; listen now, I shall describe other sorts of Nitya and Naimittika rites connected with a Sraddha. (24) The period of the moon’s wane is called Darsa; this is the time of those rites and indicates their permanence. (25)