January 16th, 2010 by Sowmya

Object of Puja Ritual

Puja ritual or worship of idols or images of God has become in recent times a great and potent tenet of faith and belief in out Hindu Religion or Sanatana Dharma.

Puja is not only performed in temples but also in most of our homes. So too, we worship God in our Satsangh meetings before we start our days’ programme of kirtans and/or study of scriptures.

The object of the puja ritual is to create and setup thoughts of spiritual forces in and around us. This is best achieved by singing or chanting of some mantra, performing certain actions and making offerings in three defined stages. Each mantra is a magazine of vast spiritual forces.

First Stage

The first stage of worship consists of purification by driving out the devils or bad tendencies and invoking devas or good tendencies. This is done by ringing a bell and chanting “HariH OM” and ‘aagamanaartham …”. All must join in the singing of this mantra.

After this is over, the leader says “Om bhur bhuvah svah“. This is called “digbandhana” and consists of chanting the sacred OM and the above three words called “vyaahrites”. By chanting this, we make a protective shell around us. All the portals of the heart are closed against the ingress of the raakshasaas or evil tendencies. At the end of the puja we break the shell by chanting the three vyahrities first and OM last.

iti digbandhaH

thus the shell is formed.

Second Stage

Now commences the 2nd stage of puja ritual.

Our attempts here would be to tune our minds to meditate upon God with a form by chanting prayers and then contemplate upon the eternal purusha by chanting the purusha suukta. The Lord of the universe is very magnificently described and praised in this vedic hymn.

These prayers are called the dhyaanam or “mantras of invocation”.

Third Stage

Then we come to the third stage of our puujaa ritual. The maNDala brahmana upanishhad explains the spiritual significance of the sixteen phased offerings (shoDaShopachaara) to the God invoked and installed in the idol or image or photo during the puujaa.

The sixteen offerings are made in five steps.

bullet First Step

the 1st 3 phases are called the dhyaana seat. “tasya niShTha dhyaanaH“. When we are merged in it without any other thought or feeling it is called meditation or dhyaana. We chant

bullet 1. dhyaayaami
God or Goddess to reside in the idol or image or photo for the time being, so that the spiritual forrce may flow thru the medium of the idol etc. towards all the people assembled.
bullet 2. aavaahayaami
bullet 3. aasanam samarpayaami
bullet 2nd step

Then follow the three phases of “water ceremony”. They are the offering of paadyam, arghyam and snaanam. Water is offered for washing the feet, the hands and for oblation. These phases are possible only in case of idols in temples or houses. As our idol or image or photo would be decorated before or at the commencement of the satsangh, the water is sprinkled by maens of the middle finger of the right hand first at the feet for paadyam, then at the hands for arghyam and lastly at the chest and then from head to feet doen for snaanam (bath or oblation).

bullet 4. paadyam samarpayaami
bullet 5. aachamaniiyam samarpayaami
bullet 6. arghyam samarpayaami
bullet 7. snaanam samarpayaami
bullet 3rd step

Then we have the 3 phased offering of gandha or sandal paste, raw rice mixed with kumkum called axata and flowers.

bullet 8. gandham samarpayaami
bullet 9. axataan samarpayaami
bullet 10. puShpaaNi puujayaami
bullet 4th step

After these, we have the waving of lights and offering of naivedya viz. food, fruits, etc. dhuupa is burning of incense and waving it before God or Goddess and diipa is the waving of a light. All waving of light and incense is done in circular motion from the right side.

bullet 11. dhuupam aaghyaapayaami
bullet 12. diipam sa.ndarshayaami

Next the naivedyam is offered by pouring a few drops of water in our right palm and by uttering the names of praaNa and brahma. After naivedya,taambula or betel leaf is offered.

bullet 13. naivedyam nivedayaami

At that time a little water is poured into the right palm and offered as the naivedya, chanting thus:

bullet OM PraaNaaya svaaha
bullet apaanaaya svaahaa
bullet vyaanaaya svaahaa
bullet udaanaaya svaahaa
bullet samaanaaya svaahaa
bullet brahmane svaahaa
bullet 14. taambuulam samarpayaami

then we have the 3rd waving of lights called niiraajana or ma.ngala aaratii. All must stand in their respective places.

ma.ngala niiraajana samarpayaami

A light is waved for the 3rd time in the manner stated in the instructions, chanting the following mantra

na tatra suuryo bhaati na chandra taarakaM
nemaa vidyuto bhaanti kutoyamagniH
tameva bhaa,ntamanu bhaati sarvam
tasya bhaasaa sarvamidam vibhaati

The leader waves the light 3 times before the feet of the lord, then 3 times before the head, then 3 times from feet to head – all in circular motions from right side to left side. All chant the above mantra.

The lighted lamp or camphor is taken to all the persons assembled as a reminder of the eternal light of spirit shedding its glory within each one of them.

bullet 5th step

the next step consists of performing pradakshinaa and offering namaskaara.

bullet 15. pradakShiNaa namaskaara samarpayaami
bullet 16. puShpaa.njali samarpayaami

Fourth stage of puja ritual

This consists of performing the visarjana by sending back the God or Goddess invoked for the ritual and breaking up the shell by chanting of “bhuurbhuvasvarOM“.

The mantras:

yathaasthaanam pratishhThaapayaami


bhuurbhuvaH svarom.

End of puujaa

At the closing of puujaa ritual, shaanti mantras are chanted and the entire puujaa ritual is dedicated to the supreme lord or eterna purusha called brahmana.

OM purrnamadaH …

OM bhadraM karNebhiH …

svasti na indro …

OM sarve bhavantu sukhinaH …

OM asato maa sadgamaya …

OM tatsatbrahmaarpaNamastu


20 Responses  
  • Pallavi writes:
    August 20th, 2012 at 7:46 pm

    Hello team, First i want to say thanks for this initiative for updating pooja vidhi along with mantras.

    As Durga pooja is coming, it will be very nice to update durga pooja vidhi.

    Thanks & Regards,

  • Vickram Subramanian writes:
    September 28th, 2012 at 1:14 am


    Thanks for the wonderful work that you are doing.

    Navratri is upcoming. It would be wonderful to have navaratri poojan vidhi



    • Sowmya writes:
      October 14th, 2012 at 9:48 pm

      Dear Vickram – Please note that the Pooja files in various languages have been posted on the site.

      • K.R.RamamRao writes:
        September 25th, 2015 at 2:47 pm

        Dear soumya mdam:

        I am a retired scientist from IISC,Bangalore. I wish to perform Sri Anantha chaturdasji pooja on 27th Sept 2015. Could you help me in sending me infor about this pooja vidhi audios or videos and the sites from where I can download….thanks in nanticipation

        • Sowmya writes:
          September 25th, 2015 at 5:02 pm

          The puja vidhi text is available in this site itself and is explanatory in full detail. There is no audio or video available.

  • Vickram writes:
    November 15th, 2012 at 7:32 pm


    Thanks very much for this wonderful service.

    As you might know the 6 days of skanda sashti started yesterday. Do we have the puja vidhi for that lying anywhere?



  • Maya writes:
    November 26th, 2012 at 5:33 pm

    Thank you very much for sharing the satyanarayan pooja vidhi. May God bless you.

  • kavita patil writes:
    December 11th, 2012 at 10:19 am

    its good to see that you have developed site for all mantra
    good work
    keep it up

  • RD writes:
    September 16th, 2013 at 7:19 pm


    Please post puja mantras in hindi.

  • Ram Iyer writes:
    January 28th, 2014 at 9:25 pm

    This is great. I sincerely appreciate the effort taken in putting this site together, and for so much contents. Particularly, I was looking for Sri Ganapathy homam instructions in tamil for so long and I was so glad to find it here. Thank you again so much for all your contributions.


  • Monmoyuri writes:
    June 29th, 2014 at 3:08 am

    Thank you for sharing the Satyanarayana puja vidhi. Its a great effort to share different puja vidhis. May God bless you.

    • Sowmya writes:
      June 29th, 2014 at 7:02 am

      Thanks for your kind words..

  • GURUSWAMY K writes:
    August 12th, 2014 at 11:41 am


    I need the script for Ganesh Chathurty and Saraswathi Pooja for printing and giving it to people free of cost in my locality especially my friends and relatives Is it possible to give me the correct script please to my e mail id
    People are not doing it with all seriouslness and I want to spered the message with a small inducement of giving the printed version free of cost in chennai
    Qualified padits are not comming to do the pooja and they do not give importance to these aspects

    Guruswamy K

  • Alok Sharma writes:
    October 4th, 2014 at 1:25 pm

    I chanced to look at the Puja Vidhi. It beautifully outlined and explained. I am greatfule for this work. People who are curious like me will benefit from such publications.


  • Swapna Patro writes:
    June 29th, 2015 at 9:39 am

    Please provide me mangala puja with all details. Awaiting for ur reply.

  • Kaveri writes:
    August 24th, 2015 at 10:55 pm

    Dear Soumyaji. Where can find all the info about Thithi and all. Like the palsham, masam, ruthu you know all the details which are to be said in the Pooja . Pls help . I am unable to find all in one place.

    • Sowmya writes:
      August 24th, 2015 at 11:27 pm

      I will try and upload for all Pujas in this upcoming year, sometime before the end of this week

  • George writes:
    September 14th, 2015 at 8:37 pm

    Greetings To the whole team
    First I would like to thank you for the great website with detailed and well explained pujas and info.
    I would like to ask if you can upload dhanvantari puja, Sudarshana homa and puja, Sarabha puja.
    Looking forward reading your response
    Jai Jagadambike

  • Sharath writes:
    September 29th, 2015 at 9:10 pm

    Dear Sowmya,

    After a deatiled search, i found couple of sites with brief articles on How to perform puja. Here its even more elaborate. But still i need the complete picture (flow) of Shodashopachara pooje. Which can be more useful for people who can start perform worship by seeing the article. If possible can you share the complete document in case you have. Thank you.

    • Sowmya writes:
      September 29th, 2015 at 9:33 pm

      Please take a look at the Satyanarayana puja in this site. This follows the template of the typical shodasha upachara puja and most of the other Pujas are quite similar in terms of procedure.

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