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What Is Yagya ?
A Vedic Yajna is conducted by a head Vedic pundit, with a number of additional Pandits playing an important role, next to their dozen helpers, by reciting or singing Vedic verses. Many things are offered into the fire, the centre of the offering ground, designated for Yagya. The list of items offered as oblations in the Yagna Vidhi, include large quantities of ghee (Clarified butter), herbs, milk, grain, cakes etc. The duration of a Yagya depends on the type; some can last a few minutes, several hours or days and several even last for years, with priests continuously providing to the gods followed by sacred verses. Some Yajnas are performed secretly; others with a huge number of people in attendance. Nowadays, only a few hundred people know how to perform these sacrifices, in an authentic way.
The actual meaning of Yagya is “to offer”. Yajna is a wide concept that is hard to translate into English. The nearest single English word for Yajna is sacrifice. Therefore, the English meaning of Yajna is “sacrifice”.
Yagya in India, in accordance to many Vedic scholars, this is one of the greatest activities that can be done. In this context, it acquires a meaning more serious than that, which is understood in a narrow ritualistic perception.
In fact, Yajna is the base or origin of the Vedas by itself. The four Vedas, Rig, Sama, Yajur and Atharva, as well as the Upanishads are the embodiment of the idea of Yajna. A basic question in these ancient scriptures is unconditionally increased as to what is the unifying element of the entire cosmos. In fact, Yajna is the abiding principle that maintains the entire creation, the unifying power that links the person with the creator, the microcosm with the macrocosm.
A Yadnya is not only most powerful remedy for karmic evolution, annihilating past negative karma and helping in generation of positive karma for the future. When Yagnas are performed in authentic way, the whole process causes the reorganization of the vibrations of someone's energy, aura and life. They are the most ancient and effective tools for karmic evolution. Swami Niranjanananda Saraswati of the Bihar School of Yoga, defines Yajna as a process that allows you to peek into the infinite spiritual dimension.