Friday, February 19, 2010

Aasoucha Dharma Prakarana

Asoucha Prakaranam 1
(details of taint) 1
I. Asoucha Sabdhartham 2
(Meaning of the tainted period) 2
II Asoucha Sandhyopasana Vidhi 2
(Rules of Sandhya Vandhana during the tainted period) 2
III. Asouche Thyaja karmaani:- 3
(The rituals which should not be done during the tainted period) 3
IV. Sadhya Asoucham 4
(The Asoucha beginning) 4
V.Durmruthaanaam Samskara 6
(ceremonies for those who die badly) 6
VI. Garbhasthravadhi nimithasoucham. 6
(Taint due to abortion) 6
VII .Shishmaranedha Vichara:- 8
(The taint in case of baby’s death.) 8
VIII. Khananadhi samskara:- 8
( The practice of burial). 8
IX. Kanya marana Asoucha:- 9
(Taint in case of death of unmarried girl) 9
X. Upaneetha Asoucham:- 10
(Taint for death after sacred thread ceremony) 10
XI. Datha puthra Asoucham:- 10
(Taint for adopted son) 10
XII. Tri rathra Asoucham 11
(three day taint.) 11
XIII. Pakshinyaasoucham 12
(taint for one and half days) 12
XIV. Eka dina Asoucham 12
(One day taint) 12
XV. Anekasoucha Sannipathe Asoucha karma 13
(Rules of taint , when more than one taint comes). 13
XVI. Athikratha Asoucham 14
(The taint after lapse of time) 14
XVII. Jana Marana Sambhave Dina Nirnaya 15
(Fixing day of death or birth) 15
XVIII. Asoucha Sangraham 16
(Summary of the different type of taints) 16

Asoucha Prakaranam
(details of taint)

Translated by

(Among Hindus a taint period is to observed by parents, other relatives and clan members if a death or birth takes place in a family. This taint is of different types. Since this knowledge was with the elder generations, slowly this knowledge is disappearing. This chapter deals in detail about the type and period of the taint as well as its applicability to different relations and clan members.)

I. Asoucha Sabdhartham
(Meaning of the tainted period)

1. Sankha:-
During the tainted period , we are not supposed to get or give charity, not supposed to get compensation, not supposed to do Homa or learning of Vedas or perform rituals to please manes. But we can do Pinda dhana aimed at the Pretha (dead body).(this is done during first days after death)

Asoucha(Taint) is a special concept in man which can be got rid of over time and by bath , in which he is permitted to do rituals towards the dead body and in which he is banned from learning of Vedas, worship and Homa.

That surprising thing called Asoucha creates taint in man and becomes the cause to him to do Pinda and Udhaka and which vanishes over time and by bath.

II Asoucha Sandhyopasana Vidhi
(Rules of Sandhya Vandhana during the tainted period)

Brahmins do not have Asoucha(taint) when they are performing Sandhya vandana. It will come after that. In the houses where Agnihothra(Fire sacrifice) is being done , to the man performing Agnihothra, Asoucha is not there during the time when he performs Agnihothra. The taint comes after that. Brahmachari is always exempt from Asoucha. But the man who does Agnihothra should not touch those having Asoucha or eat along with them.

Both in case of taint of death or birth, Sandhya vandana should not be abandoned. The Sandhya vandana mantras should be thought of within the mind and not chanted. The Mantras of Pranayama should not be even be thought of within the mind .Pranayama should be performed without Mantra.

In the Sandhya vandana which is performed during Asoucha period , the water oblation should be done along with oral chanting of Gayathri. After that you have to do Athma Pradakshina(Perambulation of one self) , do Tharpana , meditate on the Sun God and chant Gayathri 10 times.

III. Asouche Thyaja karmaani:-
(The rituals which should not be done during the tainted period)

Both in the case of death taint or birth taint, we should take food in the house of people with Asoucha. The man with Asoucha should not do charity , Homa and recitation of Veda during this period.
During this 10 day period, worship of Gods should not be done. He should not do rituals aimed at manes , give charity or do chanting of Mantras.

If we do not get another Brahmin to do Agnihothra on our behalf, we can take bath and perform the Agnihothra along with wet cloths, till we complete the ritual we do not have any taint. Then only we get Asoucha.

The Oupasana(Vedic maintenance of domestic fire) should not be discontinued during birth and death taint, or when we are sick or when we go to a foreign place or when we take food in the Sradha(worship of manes) . It should be got done by another Brahmin.

Body cleanliness, Aachamana, bath , rules for taking food , taking bath when we touch things that should not be touched etc should be observed in the Asoucha period also.
When you get Asoucha, even the things that you posses become tainted. When your Asoucha period is over, they automatically become clean so you should not posses them during Asoucha period. Even if we sprinkle water they do not become clean.
Curd, milk , ghee, vegetables , flowers, mustard , medicines, fire wood , tubers , fruits meat , honey , water of the well, skin of deer , can be taken by others with permission of the owner

In times of danger , the rules of Asoucha do not apply.. So during the Asoucha period , if we are sick or in any other danger, we can do all activities to get rid of the danger.

The wealth given during war , Yagna, marriage , Sankramana(month beginning), eclipse , during death and after birth of children would give rise to pleasures. Even if these happen during night, charity can be given or taken. During other times charity should not be given at night.

IV. Sadhya Asoucham
(The Asoucha beginning)

Asoucha can be of the duration of one day , one and half days, three days , four days , six days , ten days, twelve days , a fortnight, month , till death or for five days.

As soon as you hear about Asoucha that affects you , you should take bath along with the cloths that you are wearing at that time . The Asoucha that lasts till you take bath is called Sadhya Asoucha. Vedic Rithviks who participate in a Yagna, Deekshithas(people who do Yagna) , People who do Sathra yaga, Brahmachari, People who observe a Vrutha after doing Sankalpa, People who are giving charity and people who have realized Brahman are said to have Sadhya Asoucha only . Also people who are giving Dhana , people who are marrying, People in the midst of Yaga , People involved in war, People when the country is being attacked also undergo Sadhya Asoucham only.

For people who are Naishtika Brahmachari (who have not married at all) , Vana Prastha , Sanyasi and for Brahmachari there is no taint because of death or birth.

If Asoucha happens after the start of giving money to Brahmins, People who are observing Sradha, People who are giving Dhana., Homa, Thapas and Yaga , for them it is only Sadhya Asoucha. In case of taint due to death they have to take bath but in case of taint due to birth, they need not take bath.

5.Smruthyartha sara:-
The Yaga begins once we choose the Rithviks , do Vrutha and Sathrayaga. The marriage ceremony begins with Nandi Sradha. The Sradha begins with cooking of food or when we choose the Brahmins. In all these cases after the beginning till it ends there is no Asoucha.

Once we chant Pranava and Vyahruthees and do Sankalpa for Veda Parayana, we cannot stop the chanting in the middle. So till it ends there is no Asoucha due to death or birth.

If the marriage ceremony begins and if either of the parents die , then the marriage ceremony including Sesha Homa should be completed and then only we have to begin the rituals of death.
If after marriage and before Sesha Homa one of the couple dies then Sesha Homa should be completed and then only cremation has to be done.

When Brahmins are taking food, if Asoucha comes to the man who does the Kriya, then we should request our friends who do not have Asoucha to serve food and ask them to do Aachamana from water brought from other houses and complete the ritual.

9. Vishnu Purana:-
In case of Sradha which is seen by a women in periods or women who has given birth to a baby (within the stipulated time) or Person with Asoucha or Person who has carried a corpse , then neither the manes nor the Devas take food.

In case of death because of falling from a mountain or due to fire or when death occurs in some other country , death of a child or death of a Sanyasi , there is only Sadhya Asoucha.(only ritualistic bath)

11.Budha Vasishta:-
During eclipse there is no Asoucha due to birth or death. It comes only after the eclipse.

In case of death of the son in law, for the father in law and the mother in law or in case of death of sister’s husband to the brother in law or in case of death of Yajaka for the Yajya or in case of death of disciple to the teacher or in case of death of a student of a class to the son of the teacher or in case of death of Yajaman(Kartha) to the rithvik , there is only Sadhya Asoucha.

13. Parasara:-
In case of death due to failure of crops or death due to calamities, dangers, pestilence , flood etc , the Gnathis(paternal clan members) will have only Sadhya Asoucham.
In case of death of an artist, carpenter, ironsmith, doctors., servants and maids , barbers , kings, people who have learned Vedas Sadhya Asoucham is prescribed.

He who fights boldly and dies according to the Dharma of Kshatriyas (royals) has a death which is similar to the end of a Yaga. In such a case there is only Sadhya Asoucham.

In case of kings or those who die due to thunder o those who sacrifice their life to save a Brahmin or cow or those who die in war and in case of the favourite priest of the king only Sadhya Asoucha is prescribed,

V.Durmruthaanaam Samskara
(ceremonies for those who die badly)

Sadhya Asoucha is prescribed for death of a young boy or to the one who is abroad, sinner and Sanyasi . It is also prescribed for those who commit suicide using fire, hanging and jumping in water.

Taint (Asoucham) is not there in case of the death of Eunuch or sinner or a Sanyasi who later gave up Sanyasa or he who does not follow Dharma or a man who wastes his life or prostitute or he who does not belong to any stage of life or thief or the one who causes abortion or lady who kills her husband or those who commit suicide. To these people death ceremonies are to be performed without Mantra. Their family members do not have taint (Asoucham). One year after their death, a ritual called Narayana Bali is to be performed.

For those, who die using a sinful means , after one year perform Narayana Bali and start the after death ceremonies. After this there is a three day taint (Asoucham) .On the second day putting the bones in water, third day Udaka Dana and fourth day Sradha has to be performed.

To the one who attains cruel death , Narayana Bali should be performed after one year or after three months or six months and rituals have to be performed.
The after death rituals in this case are different. After one year Narayana Bali has to be done after performing Prajapathya Kruchram, Athikruchram , three Thaptha Kruchrams and Chaandrayanam. Since there is no certainty of our life span, the rituals can be performed after 6 months but with double of what has been told above. In case of three months, three times the above should be done. In case of three fortnights , it should be four times and for immediate performance it should be five times.(particulars of these Kruchrams (mortifications) are given in last chapter)

VI. Garbhasthravadhi nimithasoucham.
(Taint due to abortion)

In case of abortion , the mother has birth taint for number of days equal to the number of months that the foetus was in her womb.
An abortion occurring within 4 months is called Sravam (Oozing) and that which occurs after 5 or 6 months is called patham(falling) and that which occurs after 7 months is called Prasavam(delivery).After 7 months the mother has to observe birth taint for ten days.

For abortion within three months , the mother has birth taint for three days. That which occurs after 4 months but before 6 months, it is number of days equaling the number of months and in case of abortion after 7th month , a full ten days birth taint has to be observed.

If a girl baby is born, the girl babies brother, father , brother of father, his son , grand father and grand father’s brother have to observe 10 days taint.
In case of birth of a male child , all the members of the paternal clan will have ten days birth taint. In case of female child, the parents , the grand father , their father and brother as well as the brothers of the father only have to observe the ten day birth taint. Other clan members need not observe.
There are two types of birth taint-.One where nobody should touch us and other where we are not eligible for rituals. Mother has full taint (no body should touch her) but in case of father he can be touched after he takes bath, but he is not eligible for doing rituals, which are not of personal nature. He can do Oupasana, Vaiswadeva etc. In case of the members of the paternal clan , the untouchability taint is never there.
In case of birth of a male child, the people of the paternal clan of the child do not have untouchability taint. But they do not have the permission to do some rituals. The father and mother have taint. Once the father takes bath after hearing the child’s birth , the father does not have untouchability taint. The people of the clan , father and mother have equal untouchability taint. When they take bath after 10 days, they get rid of the taint. But mother has taint till the day she is allowed to touch the pots. Though father gets rid of the taint, he does not have permission to do ritualistic acts till the taint goes away from his wife.
In the Kali Nishidha Prakarana , it is told that the taint should not be reduced or removed depending on the leaning of a Brahmin.
The untouchability birth taint is for 10 days. In case of male birth , the father does not have permission to do rituals for 20 days and it is 30 days in case of female child. But these can be modified as per the clan customs.

Six days after the birth of the child , the relations have to celebrate. This would bring happiness to the Goddess called Janmadha. The ladies should sing during this occasion. The men should be armed and keep awake during night. Similar festivities should be observed on the tenth day also. This protects the child.

VII .Shishmaranedha Vichara:-
(The taint in case of baby’s death.)

Both in case of death taint and birth taint, people with taint should not touch each other. If they touch unknowingly they should observe Santhapana Kruchram. If they do it knowingly they should observe Prajapathya Kruchram.(refer last chapter for particulars of Kruchram)

If the baby dies within ten days of its birth, the people of the clan do not have death taint but only birth taint.

2. Vyagra:-
If a baby dies within ten days, then the parents need to observe only the birth taint for ten days. Sarathapa says that even they do not have death taint.

If the child dies before breaking of teeth, the clan people have only Sadhya Asoucham. From that time till the babies Choula ( first hair cut) they have taint for one day. If the baby dies from third year to seventh year they have three day death taint. If the child dies after the sacred thread ceremony , they have ten days death taint. If the child dies on the tenth day after the birth , the parents have a taint for another additional two days. If the baby dies on the sixteenth day , the parents will have three day death taint. This is not applicable to the people of the clan. For the death of the baby after ten days, the parents and the baby’s brother have ten day death taint.

VIII. Khananadhi samskara:-
( The practice of burial).

1 .Karma pradheepka:-
An unmarried girl or young boy who dies before twenty three months after birth, should be buried. After 23 months they should be cremated,

2. Madhaveeya:-
If a child who has not completed 2 years and is cremated then the members of the clan will have three days taint.

For the child to which teeth have not formed and dies before Choula (first crop) , then the members of the clan will have three day taint.

4. Shadaseethi:-
If the child dies during first or second year but after Choula , then the members of the clan will have three day taint.
In case of child above three years of age, whether Choula is done or not , the members of the clan should do Udhaka Dana for three days without Mantra. They should also have to do Pinda Dana. After eight years of age , pinda Dana should be done for ten days. The Pretha Pinda should be given out without Durba Mantra.
Cremation , Udaka Dana and Pinda Dana should be done along with Asthi Sanchayana after five years of age without Mantra,
After six years of age till the sacred thread ceremony , the Samskara should be done following garcha tradition, and then Thiolodhaka , Pinda Dhana , Nava Sradha and Shodasa sradha without Mantras.
After the sacred thread ceremony , the cremation should be done using the Pithru Medha tradition with chanting of Mantras and the rituals carried out.
Within 8 years The pashana Sthapana (consecration of stone) should be done followed by Udhaka Pinda dhana but there is no sapindeekarana.
In case of the married boy, above seven years of age and unmarried boy above 12 years of age , Sapindeekarana should certainly be done.
In case of unmarried girl, male child , and lads before marriage Pindodhaka Kriyas should be done for three days, The death taint would be there for ten days. The Pindodhaka Dhana should start from eighth day and completed within ten days and Narayana Bali should be given on 12th day.
In case of male child . Unmarried girl, eunuch and the sinner Narayana Bali should certainly be done. This should be done in case of Sanyasis also.
Udhaka Dana should be done after three years of age and Narayana Bali should be done after four years of age.

IX. Kanya marana Asoucha:-
(Taint in case of death of unmarried girl)

For the death of an unmarried girl before Choula (first hair cut) , for the clan members Sadhya Asoucha is prescribed. After choula one day taint and after marriage three days taint should be observed.

2. Samgraha:-
If an unmarried girl dies before Choula , the clan members would have Sadhya Asoucham. If they die after Choula but before engagement , one day taint . After engagement till marriage if they die the clan members should observe three day taint. But if they die before marriage but after they have their first periods , then they have to observe 10 days taint.
If a girl dies after engagement but before marriage , her clan members as well as the clan members of her ‘would be husband’ should observe three days taint. Understand that for a boy or an unmarried girl, their parents and brother will have ten days taint.

If a girl after marriage gives birth or dies in her father’s house her relations will have one day taint. The father , mother and brothers will have three days taint .

If a married woman dies or gives birth in her father’s house , the parents would have three days taint. Their children will have one day taint. It is not necessary to enquire where she died.

X. Upaneetha Asoucham:-
(Taint for death after sacred thread ceremony)

If a boy of age more than 8 dies before or after sacred thread ceremony , all the clan members will have ten day taint.

When a death occurs after age 8, the clan members will have ten day taint.
In case of death taint Sapindas(clan members up to seven generation) will have ten day taint. But Samnodhakas (Clan members beyond 7 generations) will have only three day taint. Their brother’s however will get rid of the taint by a mere bath.

For a Brahmin who observes Agnihothram , Chants Vedas and observes all aacharas(ritual rules of life) the taint is only for one day. If he does not observe Agnihothra but reads Vedas and observes Achara , he has three day taint, For a Brahmin who does not follow any of these there is a ten day taint.
He who has done errors in Karmas and birth, He who has left performing Sandhya vandana. Oupasana and Aacharas, and who is only for a name sake Brahmin, has ten days taint, In Kali age Asoucha(taint) should fully be observed.

For death of the paternal clan members definitely Brahmins should observe ten days taint period. You should not follow rules contrary to this mentioned elsewhere.
A Brahmachari (unmarried person) should not do death ceremonies till Sapindeekaranam to any one except his parents. If he does he should do redemption and get sacred thread ceremony performed again.

XI. Datha puthra Asoucham:-
(Taint for adopted son)

An adopted son does not attain the clan or get wealth of his biological father and so he need not perform death ceremonies to him.

The adopted son who attains a different clan , does not have anything to do with clan relation ship , taint and wealth of his biological father. He gets full rights in the adopted clan.
He should perform all these acts in the clan of the adopted father.

When the adopted son, biological son and artificial son perform the death ceremonies of their parents , if new moon comes in between , the pinda(rice ball) and udaka(water) Dana ceremonies would continue. If others perform they have to discontinue it on the new moon day.
When the biological son does death ceremonies for his parents, the adopted son who has gone to a different clan also has three days taint. Similarly when the adopted son dies(or birth happens in his family) his biological brother would have three days taint.
If the biological father does not have son or grand sons, the adopted son who has gone to a different family has to do all death ceremonies from cremation and observe parvana Sradha (annual death anniversary with Homam) every year.
The eldest son should never be adopted or given in adoption.
The death or birth of children for an adopted son would entail only a purificatory bath for his original clan members.

XII. Tri rathra Asoucham
(three day taint.)
Three day taint is there in case of the death of Father in law, teacher and he who performs sacred thread ceremony for you. Please note that if sacred thread ceremony is done by some one outside our clan, he is also included.
Three days taint in case of the death of Mother’s sister, uncle , mother in law , father in law and he who teaches Vedas and the institutor of a sacrifice for you...

Three days taint in case of death of father in law , maternal uncle , mother in law , Uncle’s wife , mother’s father and mother’s mother.
Three day taint in case of the death of the prathiyogis (relatives) Maternal grand father , maternal grand mother , maternal uncle , his wife , mother’s sister . daughter , daughter’s son , father’s sister , our sister , our sister’s son , mother in law, father in law . In case of death and birth Samanodhaka(Relative connected with water oblation beyond seven generations) as well as death of children between three years till they wear the sacred thread in case of our clan , there is only a three day taint. If our daughter gives birth , her father , mother and brother there is three day taint.
The man who observes three day taint should shave himself , if the person who died is elder to him.
If the wife dies before her parents and there is a child then in case of the death of father and mother in law , there is a shave and a three day taint for the husband. If there are no children, then there is only one day taint.
Women have three day taint in case of the death of their brother , his son , mother of the co wife , sister’s son (if he has undergone sacred thread ceremony). It has already been told that wife shares all the taint of her husband and not vice versa.

XIII. Pakshinyaasoucham
(taint for one and half days)
In case of death of the sister of the mother, daughters, father’s brother’s daughter, Sister’s daughter, Father’s sister, Brother’s daughter, Daughter’s daughter, Daughter of the son ,for the men and woman there is Pakshini Asoucha(Taint for 36 hours) i.e. one night with two days only .
This taint comes due to sharing the same womb. There is no Pakshini Asoucha in case of birth.
Gowathama says that this taint is not there in case of mother’s sister. There is only bath. Also there is no taint in case of the death of son of mother’s sister or his wife.
All taints of the husband are shared by their wives but husband does not share all taints of his wife.
In case of the death of Father’s brother, his son and daughter, Father’s sister, Her son and daughter , mother’s elder and younger sisters . their sons and daughters, mother’s parents , sister, her son and daughter, brother’s daughter , son’s daughter , father’s mother , father, daughter’s daughter the taint is there for the concerned woman and not her husband.

XIV. Eka dina Asoucham
(One day taint)
In case of the death of the step mother’s brother , sister, daughter , their daughters , sons, brother in laws , parents , son of the other wife of the father , his son and daughter, Binna Pithruvyaya ‘s sister(?) , her son and daughter , the man concerned has one day taint.
In case of the death of the step mother’s brother, sister, their children , grand children , step mother’s parents , step mother’s son, his son and daughter there is one day taint for the concerned lady. This taint is not applicable to her husband.

XV. Anekasoucha Sannipathe Asoucha karma
(Rules of taint , when more than one taint comes).

When one is observing a ten day taint , suppose another taint comes, this would end on the day that , the first taint ends. This is true for taint due to birth or death .

When the ten day taint is being observed any taint coming in its middle will end on the day that the first taint ends. But if the new taint comes in the last Yama of the tenth day, it continues for another 3 days. This is true for ten day taints only.

If a death taint comes in between a birth taint , or if a birth taint comes in between a death taint , it would last till the death taint lasts. It means that the birth taint is over only when death taint ends.

If a smaller (insignificant) taint merges with a long taint , the long taint would not get over with the insignificant taint. The long taint should fully be observed .Then only the taint would go away.

Yama tells that , If in between a three day death taint, a ten day birth taint comes, the birth taint would go away along with the death taint.

If father dies in between the ten day taint due to the death of the mother, the taint would go away after the tenth day after father’s death .If the mother dies in between the death taint of the father, after the ten day taint of the father’s death , one and half days taint (Bakshini Asoucha) should be observed.

7.Shada seethe:-
The taint created by the death of the parents would not end by any other taint which occurs before their death.

When one performs the rites from cremation and observes a ten day taint , suppose he happens to do cremation for another, the second taint would go away when the first taint ends. But in case of death of parents, the full ten day taint has to be observed. These will not be affected by any other taint.

When taint is being observed, if one becomes the father of the child or happens to cremate some one else in the middle , the second taint should be fully observed.

When you are observing a taint, if you become a father of a son , since you have to do Jatha Karma , immediately taint comes to an end and along with the first taint, the taint due to birth also will come to an end.
If the wife gives birth to a baby in between the ten day taint due to the death of parents , our taint goes along with the death taint. But the wife’s taint goes only after the prescribed period,

XVI. Athikratha Asoucham
(The taint after lapse of time)

If you hear about the death after 10 days, there is only three days taint after that. If you hear about it after one year, a simple bath will remove the taint.

If you hear the news of a ten day taint after 10 days, there is only three day taint after that. But if you hear about it after one year a bath will suffice.

3,Vrudha Vasishta:-
If you hear about a ten day taint after ten days but before three months, you have to observe three day taint. If you hear about it, between three months and six months, only observe for 36 hours. If you hear about it between six months and nine months, you need to observe only one day taint. If you hear it afterwards , a simple bath will suffice.
If you hear about a three day taint between third and tenth day , observe one day taint. If you hear about a Bakshini taint (One and half day taint) , after one and half days but before ten days , you have to observe half a day taint. That is if you hear in the day time, observe day time taint and if you hear it at night , observe night taint. If you hear about a one day taint after wards, you need only to take a bath,
If the wife hears about her husband’s death at any time, she has to observe ten day taint. Proof of this is the statement, “ Son and wife will always have ten days taint.”

For the death of son not invested with the sacred thread , parents have taint even if they hear about it later. Other clan members need not observe this taint. In case of birth taint, if you hear it late , nothing needs to be done. But the father whenever he hears it should take a bath.

If you hear about the death of clan members, who live outside the country, there is no taint for one or three days. What needs to be done is taking of a bath.

If there is a big river in between or when there is a mountain in between or if people of that place speak a different language, it is considered as outside country.
If the son who has to perform death ceremonies lives in another country, even if it takes one year, he has to complete the death ceremonies. If you hear about the death of a step mother, with in a year one has to do the death ceremonies. If one hears about it after one year, he need to observe only a three day taint.

XVII. Jana Marana Sambhave Dina Nirnaya
(Fixing day of death or birth)

Kalpa says that if the death/birth happens in the first half of the night (night starts after Sun set), it should be counted as having occurred in the previous day and if it occurs in the second half, it should be considered as having occurred in the next day .Another view divides the night in to three parts and considers death/birth having occurred in the previous day, if it occurs in the first two parts of the night. However if it occurs in the third part, it should be considered as having occurred in the next day.
One Amsa is 10 Nazhiga(4 hours). In that we have to leave out previous dusk for 3 ¾ nazhiga, and later dawn for the same period of time and the remaining part as thriyama night (Night of three yamas).In that adding the first part of the dusk, it becomes 18 ¾ Nazhigai (one Nazhigai is 24 minutes) and this is considered as previous day.
Another view is that if death /birth happens after sun rise, till next sun rise, it is considered as having occurred on that day.
Please follow the belief based on the family tradition.

You should not eat or drink with a person with taint. If we do , then the taint would come to us also.

If the dead body is in the village or in the home , you are not supposed to do any religious action (daily rituals, rituals which happens to be done and desirable rituals)

If a dead body is there in a village with more than 400 Brahmins, there is no dosha, and rituals can be done. If there is a street in between us and the dead body or if it can be approached only by a different path or if it is in a different street , rituals including worship of Vishnu can be done.

In case the body is that of the sage , Sanyasi or Sidhas whose soul enters a different body, there is no dosha due to the dead body.

XVIII. Asoucha Sangraham
(Summary of the different type of taints)

1. Ten day taint
1. For the death or birth in the family of clan having ten day taint relation , we have to observe ten day taint.

2.If the male child dies after ten days or if a girl child dies before marriage, the parents , brother and step brother have ten day taint.

3. In case of a boy less than seven years without sacred thread or more than seven years with the sacred thread, the members of the clan have ten day taint.

2.Three day taint for men
1. Maternal grand father 2.Maternal grand mother 3.Uncle 4.Uncle’s wife 5.Father in law 6.mother in law 7.Mother’s sister 8.Father’s sister 9.Nephew wearing sacred thread 10. Daughter’s son with sacred thread 11. Samanodaka with sacred thread (relative connected with water oblation beyond 7 generations ) 12. Daughter who is married 13. Sister who is married 14.Biological father in case of adopted son 15.Biological mother in case of adopted son 16. Son who has been given in adoption 17. The son belonging to the clan who is above 7 years and before marriage with three generation of clan relation 19.The son of the clan whose first cropping (choula ) has been performed before 25 months For the death of all these people there is a three day taint.
For Samanodaka(relative connected by oblation of water to the manes) , less than seven year old son whose sacred thread ceremony has been completed or for boy older than seven years , there is three day taint in case of their death. For all births in case of Samanodaka(relatives connected with water oblation) there is three day birth taint.

3.Bakshinyasoucha (Taint for one and half days) for men.
1. Father’s sister’s daughter. 2.Mother’s brother’s son and daughter 3. Mother’s sister’s son and daughter 4.Sister’s daughter 5. Daughter of Father’s brother 6. Daughter of son 7.Daughter’s daughter 8. Daughter’s son 9. Son of sister who is less than seven years and does not have sacred thread. In case of death of all these people, men have to observe one and half days taint.

4.One day taint for men.
1.Brother, sister and daughter of step mother 2.Daughter’s of the above three. 3.Wife’s brother 4. Daughter of father’s step brother 5.Step brother’s daughter . 6. Father’s step sister 7.Daughter or son of Father’s step sister 8.Parents of step mother 9.Daughters of the clan within three generations who are above 25 months and below six years and not married. 10 .Biological brother in case of adopted son 11. Clan members of the biological family 12.Father in law and mother in law who do not have any other children 13. Boys above 25 months and below six years of boys who had not undergone first crop (Choula) belonging to paternal clan.

5.Three day taint for women
1.Brother whose sacred thread ceremony is over 2.Brother’s son whose sacred thread ceremony is over. 3.Sister’s son whose sacred thread ceremony is over 4. Mother of the other wives of husband.. Three days taint if death occurs to any of these.

6.One and half day taint for women.
1.Father’s brother. 2.Mother’s sister 3.Mother’s brother 4.Father’s sister 5.The children of Sno1 to four. 6.Paternal Grand father 7.Paternal Grand mother .8. Maternal grand parents 9.Sister 10.Sister’s daughter 11.Brother’s son. Death of any of these will entail One and half a day taint.

7.One day taint for women.
1.son, daughter, brother, and sister of co wife’s mother. 2.Their children 3.Father’s step brother 4.Father’s step sister 5.Children of 3 and four 6. Co wife’s parents . Death of any of these entails one day taint for ladies.
The people described above are men for whom Sacred thread has been performed and Woman who are married. The taint for a woman does not affect her husband.

Thus ends The chapter on taints in the Samkshepa Dharma Shastras.


  1. Thanks for the detailed explanations. I have a specific query.

    My father-in-law expired and as a daughter mywife had 3 days asoucham. The 10th day ceremony is to be performed in which as per our Thanjavur custom she has to prepare Pindam and do 'Pathu Kottuthal'. But we got a Vridhhi as our daughter in law gave birth to a child. My wife being the only daughter, can she participate in the 10th day rituals.

    As I do not have your personal Email ID I am posting this here.

    Do reply tome to

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  3. Respected sir
    my tenent expired on 9th October 2015 ... magha nakshatra, friday, dwadasi thithi .... so as the house is registered on my name (House owner) .... should we conduct any shanthi & can we give the house for rent to others or not ... if yes for how long we should keep it empty / locked .... kindly guide us ... Pranams

  4. if the boy is a brahmin and his wife a non brahmin and when they beget a child what is the period of asouch please reply
    to,Thanks P.R.HARIHARAN

  5. if the boy is a brahmin and his wife a non brahmin and when they beget a child what is the period of asouch please reply
    to,Thanks P.R.HARIHARAN

  6. I have a question what to do with a planned nitchayathartham (engagement) if the females grandmother (fathers side) dies six month before the planned date?
    Must the engagement be postponed?

  7. Respected Sir, good evening. My grandfathers brother grandson blessed with granddaughter. My father death anniversary is on 5th day of baby girl birth day. Can I perform death anniversary or I have to perform on 11th day. Kindly clarify.

    Bvhn Mallikarjuna rao,

  8. Dear sir,
    What will be the taint of the deceased is husband's paternal grandfather's brother's daughter in law?

    Best regards - Kala

  9. What is the taint rules for the great grandfather (prapithamahar) ,when a male child is born to his pouthran (son's son)?

    1. All rules plus additional rule that the Male child's paternal grandfather Parpithamahan should not see the child till the Punyahavachanam is done. A Homam is also to be performed. It is called prapoutya Homam

  10. "Brahmachari is always exempt from Asoucha".
    Give line in upanishad (or) verses in vedam saying that Brahmachari exempted from Asoucha? im colloecting this for a healthy discussion.

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  12. Useful information for all brhmins

  13. Thank you sharing information. Wonderful blog & good post. Its really helpful for me, awaiting for more new post. Keep Blogging!
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  14. I am madhwa brahmin. My elder sister hudband passed away how many days asoucha for me
    My sister is not alive

  15. I am T S Yegnaraman - My queries are

    My father's elder brother's daughter-in-law passed away. I am told that I am a daayadhi and hence I have to observe ten days theetu. Does my son also has to observe ten days theetu (he is a married person). Has he to perform kuzhi tharpanam. Are we barred from going to hill temples or other temples. Generally it is understood after shubhasweekaram one can visit temples, Can we perform any nerchai or vazhipadu. Can we perform any special poojas or homams at home. could you kindly clarify the position. Thanks.

  16. Sir jaigurudev I'm vitthalsharma
    Srisailam devasthanamu

    Krupaya uttar dediye

    Astadasa saktipeeth kaa sthal me daily pooja karnevala main priest ka pitaji swargast hogaya abhi kitana din temple pooja chodana guruji pls give me answer

  17. Useful information .Thank you very much.Kindly clarify a doubt.can a marriage be performed if grooms paternal grandmother dies one month before marriage which is fixed six months earlier

  18. I am Chandra sekhar my quirey

    My grandfather's elderbrothers's great grandson died. Are we required to observe a asoucham for ten days

  19. Respected sir, please clarify my question.
    My wife's father was not alive at the time of our marriage. Her father's elder brother performed kanya danam. He passed away yesterday. Will there be ashaucham for me or my wife.

  20. Hello everyone, I'm here to let the whole world know of a man called Dr. Ekpen he is a spell caster and he is the man that helps me in my restore my marriage when my husband broke up with me, he use his power and gift to restore joy in my relationship. I want to also let the whole world know that he can still help if you are been blackmail by someone or you want to win a court case he can help. Contact him today via email:

  21. If grooms grandfather dies , is it possible for marriage with in a year in his0 family

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  23. Please advise whether Shiva temple visit is permissible during the first year after death of brother

  24. Please advise whether Shiva temple visit is permissible during the first year after death of younger brother