Hindus, Buddhists, and Jains in India actively celebrate the significant festival of Guru Purnima. They actively dedicate this auspicious day to showing gratitude and respect to their guru or spiritual teacher. The festival is actively celebrated on the full moon day (Purnima) in the Hindu month of Aashaadha (June-July). In this blog, we will discuss the Vidhi (rituals), Samagri (ingredients), and the significance of Guru Purnima Puja.
The History of Guru Purnima Puja
The story of Guru Purnima Puja actively dates back to ancient times and actively roots itself in Hindu mythology. The festival actively associates with the birth anniversary of Ved Vyasa, who actively is considered the Adi Guru (first guru) of Hinduism. According to legend, Satyavati and sage Parashara actively give birth to Ved Vyasa, who actively is believed to have authored the Puranas.
Ved Vyasa is known for his contribution to the Vedas, the ancient scriptures of Hinduism. He is believed to have divided the Vedas into four parts – Rigveda, Samaveda, Yajurveda, and Atharvaveda. He is also credited with writing the epic Mahabharata, which is considered one of the greatest works of Indian literature.
The story of Guru Purnima Puja is also associated with the relationship between Ved Vyasa and his disciple, Lord Ganesha. According to legend, Ved Vyasa had composed the Mahabharata and had requested Lord Ganesha to write it down. Lord Ganesha agreed on the condition that Ved Vyasa should dictate the text without any pause.
History of Guru Purnima Puja
As Ved Vyasa dictated the text, Lord Ganesha wrote it down using a peacock feather and a lotus leaf. However, as the writing continued, the peacock feather broke, and Lord Ganesha had to look for a new one. In the meantime, Ved Vyasa took the opportunity to compose a new verse, causing Lord Ganesha to become angry and throw away the lotus leaf.
This incident continued, with Lord Ganesha breaking several peacock feathers and lotus leaves. Finally, Ved Vyasa realized the importance of Lord Ganesha’s presence and asked for forgiveness. He promised Lord Ganesha that he would write the Mahabharata only if he agreed to write it down without any pause. Lord Ganesha agreed, and the writing continued without any interruption.
This incident symbolizes the importance of a guru in one’s life and the need for a disciple to be obedient and respectful towards their guru. It also highlights the relationship between a guru and a disciple, which is based on mutual trust and respect.
Significance of Guru Purnima
The significance of Guru Purnima goes beyond just expressing gratitude and respect for one’s guru. It is a day to reflect on the teachings and values imparted by our gurus and how they have influenced our lives. The festival emphasizes the importance of a guru in one’s life and encourages us to seek guidance in our journey toward spiritual and personal growth.
In Hinduism, a guru is considered to be a spiritual guide who leads their disciple towards enlightenment and liberation from the cycle of birth and death. The relationship between a guru and a disciple is considered sacred and based on mutual trust and respect. The guru not only imparts knowledge but also helps the disciple in their spiritual and personal growth by providing guidance, support, and motivation.
Guru Purnima is also significant as it marks the birth anniversary of Ved Vyasa, who is considered the Adi Guru (first guru) of Hinduism. Ved Vyasa is believed to have divided the Vedas into four parts and written the epic Mahabharata. He is revered as a great sage and his teachings continue to inspire generations of spiritual seekers.
The festival is not just limited to Hinduism but is also celebrated by Buddhists and Jains. In Buddhism, Guru Purnima is celebrated to commemorate the first sermon given by Lord Buddha to his five disciples. Jainism is celebrated to honor the Tirthankaras, or spiritual leaders who have attained enlightenment.
Astrological Significance of Guru Purnima Puja:
Guru Purnima is not only a significant spiritual event but also an astrologically auspicious day that holds a special place in the Hindu calendar. According to Vedic astrology, the day of Guru Purnima falls when the Sun is in the zodiac sign of Cancer, and the Moon is in the opposite sign of Capricorn.
This planetary alignment creates a powerful energy that is believed to enhance the effects of any spiritual practice, especially the ones performed in the presence of one’s guru or spiritual teacher.
Astrologically, the Sun represents the divine light of consciousness, while the Moon symbolizes the mind and emotions.
People consider the combination of these celestial bodies during Guru Purnima highly favourable for gaining spiritual insight and wisdom, as well as for purifying the mind and emotions and strengthening one’s connection with the divine.
It is believed that the spiritual practices performed on this day have a profound impact on one’s overall well-being, including physical health, mental clarity, and emotional balance.
Additionally, according to Hindu mythology, the planet Jupiter or ‘Guru Graha’ is considered the teacher or ‘Guru’ of the gods, who impart wisdom and knowledge.
Therefore, worshipping Jupiter or performing Guru Purnima Puja is believed to attract the blessings of this planet, which can bring immense success, prosperity, and good fortune to one’s life.
Samagri and Cost for Guru Purnima Puja
|Item||Quantity||Approx. Cost (in INR)|
|Incense sticks||1 packet||20-50|
|Fruits (seasonal)||5-7 types||200-500|
|Sweets (ladoo or burfi)||2 types||100-200|
|Betel leaves and nuts||11 sets||50-100|
|Panchamrit (mixture of milk, curd, honey, sugar, and ghee)||1 cup||50-100|
|Rudraksha mala (optional)||1||500-1000|
|Sandalwood paste||1 small container||20-50|
|Turmeric powder||1 small container||10-20|
|Kumkum||1 small container||10-20|
|Ghee||1 small container||50-100|
|Cotton wicks||1 packet||20-50|
|Diya (earthen or brass)||1-2||50-100 each|
|Red cloth (for puja altar)||1 meter||50-100|
In addition to the above items, some people also perform special havans and yagnas on Guru Purnima. The cost of these rituals can vary significantly depending on the complexity and duration of the ceremony. It is best to consult with a priest or religious expert to determine the specific requirements and costs for such ceremonies.
Overall, the cost of performing a Guru Purnima Puja can range from a few hundred rupees to several thousand rupees, depending on the items and rituals involved. However, the true significance of the festival lies in expressing gratitude and respect towards one’s guru, and the cost should not be a barrier to performing the puja.
Vidhis involved in Guru Purnima Puja
Choose a clean and peaceful location for the puja, preferably in front of a picture or idol of your guru. Clean the area and decorate it with flowers, rangoli, and other decorations. Gather all the required items for the puja, as listed in the previous section.
Take a cup of panchamrit, a mixture of milk, curd, honey, sugar, and ghee, and offer it to your guru by pouring it on their picture or idol. Alternatively, you can also offer it as the symbol of the guru, such as a book or a pen.
Sit in front of the picture or idol of your guru and offer your respects and gratitude by chanting Guru Vandana, which is a hymn or a prayer dedicated to the guru. You can also recite any other mantras or slokas that you are familiar with.
Offer a coconut to your guru by placing it in front of their picture or idol. You can also break the coconut and offer the pieces.
Betel leaves and nuts:
Offer 11 sets of betel leaves and nuts to your guru. Fold the betel leaves and place a betel nut on each of them. Arrange the sets on a plate or a tray and offer them to your guru.
Offer a selection of 5-7 seasonal fruits to your guru. Wash and arrange the fruits on a plate or a tray and offer them to your guru.
Offer 2 types of sweets, such as ladoo or burfi, to your guru. Arrange them on a plate or a tray and offer them to your guru.
Offer 2 garlands of flowers to your guru. You can also offer loose flowers or a bouquet.
If you have a rudraksha mala, you can offer it to your guru by placing it in front of their picture or idol.
Light the diya (lamp) and agarbatti (incense stick) in front of your guru’s picture or idol. Wave the camphor in front of the diya and offer aarti by circling it in front of the guru’s picture or idol. You can also sing or recite aarti songs or slokas.
After the puja is complete, distribute the fruits and sweets as prasad among the family members and friends who have gathered for the puja.
Benefits of Guru Puja
The Guru Purnima puja enhances spiritual growth and fosters a deeper connection with the Guru (spiritual teacher).
It promotes the development of discipline, devotion, and gratitude towards the Guru.
The puja allows individuals to express their reverence and seek blessings from the Guru.
It serves as a reminder to follow the teachings and guidance of the Guru in one’s life.
The puja instils a sense of clarity, wisdom, and self-awareness through the blessings received from the Guru.
It helps individuals overcome obstacles and challenges on their spiritual journey.
The puja purifies the mind, body, and soul, leading to inner peace and harmony.
It facilitates the removal of negative energies and promotes positive vibrations.
The Guru Purnima puja is believed to bestow divine grace and blessings, accelerating one’s spiritual progress.
It inspires seekers to embody the qualities and virtues demonstrated by the Guru, such as compassion, humility, and selflessness.