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Rama Navami is celebrated as the day on which Lord Rama was born. In some parts of South India, like Andhra Pradesh, it is considered the day on which Lord Rama and Goddess Sita were married.
Either way, the Navami (ninth day) of the Shukla Paksha (the bright fortnight) in the month of Chaitra is celebrated as Rama Navami, according to the traditional lunar calendar. This usually falls during the months of April and March.
Rama Navami Pooja Timings:
As per the Gregorian calendar, in the year 2018, Rama Navami will be celebrated on the 25th of March, which is a Sunday. The muhurat for performing the pooja starts from 10.59 hours to 13.25 hours. The total duration of the muhurat is 2 hours and 25 minutes. The "Madhyana" moment of Rama Navami falls at 12.12 hours. Navami tithi starts from 08.02 on 25th of March 2018 and lasts till 05.54 on the 26th of March 2018.
Significance Of Rama Navami
The name of Lord Rama and the holy book based on his life 'Ramayana' are considered the most auspicious things in the Hindu religion by those who practice it. Rama Navami celebrates the moment that the illustrious avatar of Lord Maha Vishnu arrived on the earth.
The festival of Rama Navami is not only celebrated in Indian households and temples; but it is also celebrated with pomp and fervor overseas. Countries like Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Singapore and parts of Indonesia have a rich history that connects them with Lord Rama and Ramayana. Rama Navami is an important festival in those areas of the world too.
It is believed that who so ever prays to Lord Rama on Rama Navami and performs rituals like fasting and pooja will receive blessings from the Lord. The household where a Rama devotee lives will be blessed with peace, prosperity, wealth and health. Lord Hanuman shall forever reside in that home and shall protect and bless the members of the household.
Rama Navami Pooja
According to the scriptures, devotees are advised to perform s pooja to Lord Rama through the six Ghatis or the duration of Rama Navami pooja muhurat (2 hours and 24 minutes). Doing so helps the devotee to reap good benefits from the pooja.
The effects are further enhanced if the pooja can be done for 8 hours. The followers of Lord Rama must fast from the sunrise till the sun sets.
The various types of Rama Navami Vrat
As per the scriptures, there are many ways in which a devotee can perform the vrat and demonstrate his faith.
• A Casual Vrat
Many devotees choose to perform the vrat without any wishes or intentions. They do not desire any gain from the vrat. Their aim is to thank the Lord for all the blessings he has showered upon the devotee. Such a vrat does not need to be regularly repeated.
• Continuous Observance Of Vrat
In this kind of vrat, the devotee regularly observes the vrat but still does not desire an effect or benefit from it.
• Vrat Done With A Desire At Heart
Most of the people observing the fast do so for the fulfillment of their desires. The wish may be something materialistic or may be to simply earn the blessings of Lord Rama and to lead a peaceful and happy life.
Method Of Performing The Rama Navami Vrat Pooja
Rama Navami Vrat pooja must be done in a particular fashion; especially so if you have a specific desire at heart.
• Choose a clean area to perform the pooja or clean the pooja room in your house.
• Place the idol or the image of Lord Rama. Make sure that you also place idols or images of Devi Sita, Lord Hanuman and Lakshmana along with Lord Rama, as it is believed that they always follow Lord Rama.
• The pooja is always done at the noon time. Take a note of the muhurat for performing the pooja.
• First, invite Lord Ganesha and ask him to be present. Pray to Lord Ganesha to remove all the obstacles and that he should make the pooja successful. Say: 'Lord Ganapati, please bless us by coming here. Please keep all the obstacles away and help us make this pooja a success.'
• Now pray to Lord Rama. Light the lamp and offer the Lord some incense. Offer flowers and fruits. Tulsi is also considered to be very auspicious to be offered to Lord Rama.
• Now, take some holy water, kumkum, and rice. Sprinkle these on the couple.
• Chant the following mantra next:
"Shri Sita Lakshman Bharat Shatrughna Hanumat Sametaya Shri Ramaya Namah."
It means that I bow to Lord Rama who is accompanied by Goddess Sita and Lakshmana.
• Next chant the following:
"Om Ramaye Namah"
Chant the above mantra at least for 108 minutes.
• Next, tell your Lord that you are thankful. Offer fruits and flowers.
• You can now sing bhajans and aartis of Lord Rama. Make sure that the whole family is present during the aarti.
• Distribute the prasad to everyone who accepted the invitation for the Rama Navami pooja.