Nag Panchami Method of Pooja
Nag Panchami is celebrated on the 5th day of the Shukla Paksha of Savan Month of Hindu Calander, in the year 2023 it would be celebrated on 21 August 2023. On the 4th day, soaking of the Mat Beans (मोठ चना) and food is prepared then on the 5th day along with the preparation of Laddoo with milk, flour of Bajra, Ghee, and Sugar, then the food that you have prepared yesterday is eaten. A normal rope is made with 7 nots in it, which symbolizes a snake, by putting that on a small platter, it is then worshipped as a snake.
The soaked Mat Beans, Bajra, and rice are offered in prayer to the rope snake. Read the story of Nag Panchami and touch feet of one’s Mother-in-Law and distribute the prasad among all. And usually, married women are called back to their houses by her parents on this day.
People also worship snakes on this day in temples or by going near snake pits. Since Hindus are the only people in the world who has it in their culture to live with nature and let live everybody with peace. They try to associate their festivals with animals as well.
Nag Panchami Story
Once in a village there was a moneylender who had 7 sons and 7 daughter-in-Laws (Bahu). Once all 7 Bahus went to extract the mud of a lake to put in their fields to improve the fertility of the soil. Suddenly they found a big snake came out of mud, every Bahu run to kill the snake because they have to come everyday to get the mud. But the youngest Bahu prevented all of them from killing the snake. Next day when everyone was planning to go to the dried pond for mud, everyone was of the opinion, since there is a snake there and the youngest Bahu prevented us from killing, so she will go alone as they do not want a snake bite.
When she went there and found that the snake was sitting prepare to defend if anybody come near to get the mud. The youngest Bahu called the snake her brother and ask brother please let me take the mud. The snake allowed and also associate the feeling of sister in her. When she reaches back home all the other Bahus were surprised to see her alive and asked, why didn’t you get the snake bite. She replied that I made snake my brother that’s why. Then that snake came to their house and tell everyone that he had come to bring his sister to his house for few days, just like every other brother in India does that. It is believed that snakes have the power to turn stones in to precious metals, diamonds, etc. When she went to the houses of snakes or her brother, she was treated with all lavishness and all the facilities, and when the time came when the youngest Bahu had to go back to her husband’s house. She was given so much money, precious stones, diamonds and suitcases filled with expensive clothes and other stuffs by her snake brother.
When she came back, everyone was surprised and found that how come she does not have any real brother yet she is able to get all this from her brother and we have our real brothers but they never give us quarter of the things that she has brought. When she showed everyone the things, they got surprised that such precious jewelry is not even with the Queen and King. Out of Jealousy one of the 7 Bahu complained to the Queen that she does not have any real brother and the kind of Jewelry she has should belong to a Queen. She was called in the court and ask to surrender the Jewelry to Queen, the moment Queen put it in her neck that Jewelry turned into a snake and everyone started running. Then she told everyone that this is the result of the feeling that I have associated with my brother snake. If I wear this, only then it looks like the Jewelry but if anybody else wear it, it will be a snake to others.
After this in that kingdom it was announced that on the 5th day of Savan Month of Hindu Calander, everyone especially married women worship the Nag or Snakes and associate feelings of brother with them. Everyone should eat food which is prepared one day prior and distribute it like a prasad to others. Anyone who hear or tell this story, his or her wishes would be fulfilled by the Nag Devata (Snake God).
Nag Panchami in Different Places
- Mannarasala Temple, Kerala – With 30,000 images of Nag deities inside the temple, the Mannarasala Temple is the largest snake temple in Kerala.
- Nag Vasuki Temple, Prayagraj – Dedicated to the serpent king Vasuki, the Nag Vasuki Temple gets flooded with devotees on Nag Panchami.
- Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh – Varanasi is famous for its akhadas, where special dangals are organized on the occasion of Nag Panchami.
- Mahakaleshwar, Ujjain – A special Nag Puja is organized at the Nagchandreshwar shrine of Mahakaleshwar Temple in Ujjain, which is open only for 24 hours on Naag Panchami.
- Manasa Devi Temple, Haridwar – Manasa Devi Temple is dedicated to the snake goddess, Manasa, and Naga Panchami is a big event here.
- Bhujanga Naga Temple, Gujarat – Located on the outskirts of Bhuj, the Bhujanga Naga Temple is visited by thousands of devotees for Nag Puja.
Nag Panchami Prominent Snakes
It is believed that any pooja which is offered to snakes would reach to the serpent Gods. Hence people worship live snakes on this day as a representative of serpent Gods who are worshipped and revered in Hindus. Following 12 are worshipped during Nag Panchami.
Naga Panchami Mantra
सर्वे नागाः प्रीयन्तां मे ये केचित् पृथ्वीतले।
ये च हेलिमरीचिस्था येऽन्तरे दिवि संस्थिताः॥
ये नदीषु महानागा ये सरस्वतिगामिनः।
ये च वापीतडगेषु तेषु सर्वेषु वै नमः॥
अनन्तं वासुकिं शेषं पद्मनाभं च कम्बलम्।
शङ्ख पालं धृतराष्ट्रं तक्षकं कालियं तथा॥
एतानि नव नामानि नागानां च महात्मनाम्।
सायङ्काले पठेन्नित्यं प्रातःकाले विशेषतः।
तस्य विषभयं नास्ति सर्वत्र विजयी भवेत्॥
The meaning of this mantra is :—
May the snakes who are staying in this world, sky, heaven, sun-rays, lakes, wells, ponds etc. bless us and we all salute them
The names of nine Nag Devtas are Ananta, Vasuki, Shesha, Padmanabha, Kambala, Shankhapala, Dhritarashtra, Takshaka and Kaliya. If chanted regularly every day in the morning, will keep you protected from all evils and make you victorious in life.