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Sarva Pitru Amavasya

According to the Hindu traditional calendar, during Mahalaya paksha shraddh, on the New Moon day (Amavasya), Sarva Pitru Amavasya is largely observed. As per North Indian calendar, during Ashwin month, this particular Amavasya falls. As per South Indian calendar, this particular Amavasya falls in the Bhadrapada month. It is to be highly noted that on the next day of Sarva Pitru Amavasya, Durga Navaratri festival begins.

It is to be highly remembered that the last day of Pitru Paksha is Sarva Pitru Amavasya. The term Amavasya means new moon day and the term Sarva Pitru means all ancestors and forefathers. On this particular day, religious Shraddha and Tarpan are wholeheartedly performed to all the ancestors and forefathers. Sarva Pitru Amavasya is the most significant day for Pitru Paksha. Devotees indulge in performing rites on this particular day on the bank of the river and other holy spots. The day is special for ancestor worship and food offering is done to them.

It is to be highly noted that Pitru Paksha is also spelt as Pitri paksha or Pitr paksha. The term literally means “fortnight of the ancestors”. In certain region, it is known as Apara paksha, Mahalaya Paksha, Jitiya, Kanagat, Sola Shraddha (“sixteen shraddhas”), Pitri Pokkho and Pitru Pakshya. According to the Hindu religious scholars and pundits, “Pitru Paksha is regarded by Hindus who are much religious to be inauspicious, given the death rite performed during the ceremony, called as Shraddha or tarpan. In western and south India, it falls in the Hindu lunar month of Bhadrapada as per the Hindu traditional calendar and in September–October as per the Georgian calendar, beginning with the full moon day (Purnima) that occurs immediately after the Ganesh festival and ending with the new moon day known as Sarvapitri amavasya, Mahalaya amavasya or simply Mahalaya.

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