Pitra Loka - The Abode of Ancestors

What is Pitra Dosha?

Pitra Dosha is one among the important concepts in Indian Astrology. In Vedic Astrology, one can alleviate the Pitra Dosha from his / her horoscope by appeasing Rahu and Ketu. A Pitra Dosha is a Karmic Debt of the ancestors and forefathers, and is to be paid by the person who has this dosha in his horoscope.

According to a Hindu Mythology, Bhu Loka (universe) is divided into “mritu loka,” “preta loka,” “narak loka” and “pitra loka”. We live in mritu loka - earth and our ancestors live in Pitra Loka. Did you know these souls can only accept the offerings given to them during Shraadh ceremonies?

In the event of death, people leave their bodies and enter the world of ancestors known as Pitra Loka. It is the tendency of human nature to make mistakes and commit sins. In their lifetime, our ancestors also committed sins, intentionally or unintentionally. These sins are reflected in the horoscope of future generation as Pitra Dosha. Thus, everybody on mritu loka is destined to suffer from the ill-effects of those sins.

The Concept of Pitra Dosha

Now, let’s understand the theory around Pitra Dosha. Pitra - the signification of soul - is an ultimate source of life for human beings. If in any horoscope where Pitra is afflicted by Rahu, then this combination is referred to as Pitra Dosha. In other words, if Pitra is present in either of the nakshatras (constellations) of Rahu, namely, Ardra, Swati and Satabhisha, then Pitra Dosha is formed.

As per astronomical facts, an eclipse is formed on ‘No Moon’ night or dark night (Amavasya) when Pitra is in conjunction of moon. Longitudinally, when these two planets appear on the eclipse of Rahu and Ketu axis at 180 degree on the same axis, moon attains the position of combustion and the sky welcomes the Full Moon. And this new moon night is important for gratifying our ancestors (Pitra Tarpan). On this day, our Pitras or soul of our ancestors is active; and Moon, being the significator of water, affects the temperament and emotions of person affected by Pitra Dosha. Thus, one should do give reverence with water to Pitra on full and new moon for Pitra Tarpan as it solidifies the link between the generations and further help them to peacefully complete their journey to the heavenly abode.

However, one should analyze the individual’s astrological birth chart to detect which malefic planet is forming Pitra Dosha. Then only Pitra Dosha Nivaran Puja should be performed as remedial measures to pacify that malefic planet in Pitra Paksha.

How to check if your horoscope has Pitra Dosha?

  • Always check the position of planet Pitra – the father in astrology - in your horoscope. If the Pitra is impacted by any malefic like Rahu or Saturn, there will be Pitra Dosha.
  • If Moon – the mother in horoscope - is situated in the 3rd or 6th House of the horoscope of the native, then the native suffers from the malefic effects of planet Mercury.
  • If Venus, Mercury or Rahu, any two of these three or all the three planets are situated in 2nd or 5th or 9th or 12th House of the horoscope of the native- The planet Jupiter gives inauspicious results.

What are the Vedic remedies for Pitra Dosha?
Those who are suffering from different chronic troubles in their life because of Pitra Dosha should follow the following remedies. One should perform these with sincerity to gain positive results.

  • Every year there are some special days which are meant for remembering our ancestors. These days fall in the month of "Ashwiini" (September or October) on the first day of "Amavasya,” and are well-known as “shraadh paksh” or “pitra paksh”. During these days of pitra paksh, one should keep a fast, make donations and offer prayers for ancestors.
  • Keep fast on Maghi Purnima to please God Vishnu and visit temple or Holy River to offer Jal to forefathers or Pitra (Tarpan). It helps in minimizing the ill-effects of Pitra Dosha or sinful deeds.
  • Observe fast on auspicious Phalgun Krishna Paksha Trayodashi (Maha Shivratri) to worship Lord Shiva, and offer plum, flowers, bunches of three leaves of Bel Patra and Panchamrit on Shivalinga in a Shiva temple.
  • Donate food and clothes to poor persons. People believe that donation on the night of any Pushya Amavasya or on Sarva Pitra Amavasya in Ashwin month or on all Amavasya Tithi to reduce the gravity of the evil effects of Pitra Dosha.
  • Follow prescribed rituals and perform Shraddha, Tarpan or Pind Daan in the afternoon of Pitra Paksha Ashwin Amavasya to minimize the negative effects of Pitra Dosha. Don’t forget to offer Jal (holy water) to Pitra on the death anniversary of your forefathers.

Besides the above mentioned remedies, one can also perform the following Pitra Dosha remedies:

  • Do Pitra shanti jagyas
  • Offer water and food to your ancestors during Shraadh
  • Make your Pitra and Jupiter strong by wearing gemstones
  • Do "shanti paath" and "pitra-gayatri" mantra
  • Make donations to physically challenged people
  • Feed food to a dog, a cow, and a crow
  • Avoid any new activity during pitra paksha

Thus, one should always remember their ancestors and should be grateful to them for their well being.


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