Anand Hudli anandhudli at hotmail.com
Mon Sep 26 02:06:05 CDT 2016

On Sun, Sep 25, 2016 at 6:06 PM, Praveen R. Bhat via Advaita-l
< advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org> wrote:
> Namaste Anandji,
> Some of the purohitas from our community had told my father that he could
> give gogrAsa/ feed the shraddha-day bhojana to a cow as an exception,
> considering his age and health, along with dakShiNa, etc, kept aside, for
> the kulapurohit or any other purohit. Does this exception not have a basis
> in shAstra?

Dear Praveenji,

Feeding a cow is an acceptable form of Shraddha for ashaktas and
asamarthas, as our dharmashAstras opine. The nirNayasindhu, in fact, makes
it even simpler. tRNAni vA gave dadyAt. One can feed just grass to the cow.
However, given the importance of the sAMvatsarika (annual death ceremony),
mahAlaya, and aShTakA shrAddhas, it is better to do at least a
sankalpashrAddha on those days, if possible in any way. The
sankalpashrAddha is a greatly simplified ceremony, where at least one
Brahmana is fed. pAtre bhojyasya cAnnasya tyAgaH saMkalpa ucyate
(nirNayasindhu). Giving food to a suitable Brahmana is saMkalpashrAddha.
AmashrAddha and hiraNyashrAddha, which I wrote about earlier, are also
options. Most of the components of the regular pArvaNashrAddha such as
arghya, pANihoma (or agnaukarana homa of the yajurvedins), vikira,
vAyasapiNDadAna, and piNDapradAna are left out in these simplified


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