[Advaita-l] (no subject)

Venkata sriram P venkatasriramp at yahoo.in
Wed Mar 30 22:52:05 CDT 2011

Dear Sarmaji,
That means there are two atiratras one with shodasi and another without
shodasi.  Do we have any scriptural authority for that? Scriptures speak of only one
atiratra I think.  Again does the scripture spell out the different qualifications required for
the adhikaris to perform them?

There are 2 aspects here viz., atirAtra & nAtirAtra.  
As we are familiar with the word "atirAtra", i need not explain this.  
That said, "shodasi pAtra dhAraNa & sweekAra" is MANDATORY in 
atirAtra ritual.   Now, if we observe the other statement which "seems to be" 
contradictory, infact is not contradictory.  
It emphasizes the importance of "shodasi pAtra dhAraNa & sweekara" 
even in nAtirAtra also.  So, what is "nAtirAtra"?  
The 4 pillars of yajna here are brahma, hota, udgata & adhwarya.  
Each one has again 4 different assistants to assit them in atirAtra ritual.  
This atirAtra ritual should be done with extreme care & shraddha.  
Any omission of the yajnAnga, mistake committed, there is no prAyaschitta 
for this atirAtra ritual.  So, among one of the yajnAngAs, there is a ritual of 
holding other person's uttariya.  So, 4 x 4 = 16 ritwiks hold the uttariya by 
holding the other person's uttariya in a cyclic fashion and circumumbulate 
around the yajna vedika.  Any mistake committed in this yajnAnga, the 
order of the rituals of atirAtra is disturbed and it is called "atirAtra bhanga".  
This results in yajna bhanga and such a disturbed atirAtra is called "nAtirAtra".  
So, in the case of nAtirAtra, the shodasi pAtra sweekara has to be 
performed again.  So, in either case, shodasi is not optional but 
BTW, there is only one atirAtra.  
Hope i am clear.

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