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What is a Puja

A puja is the inviting, welcoming and entertaining of the Diety.

POOJA is an ancient expression of worship taken from the Vedas. The
great masters of the past would spend their time performing worship
of the Lord through rituals in order to appease Him. These acts of
worship served to keep them on the path of Dharmic living, and
helped train their minds to be pure and become in oneness with the
Lord.
Pooja is also a way to acknowledge the Divinity which is expressed
through the five elements and the elements of Nature. The rituals are
so designed as to engage the five senses simultaneously and keep
them focused on the Divine Lord. We can also use the act of worship
to express our love and gratitude to the Lord for giving us life and all
our many blessings.
Pooja consists of two letters -‘ Pa’ and ‘Ja’ . ‘Pa’ means Paapanaashana
which stands for the removal of impurities and ‘Jaa’ means
Janmavicheda or the cessation of the cycle of birth and death.
At the mundane level, Pooja is performed to appease the Devas ( or
the rulers of the elements of nature ) as well as the Deities who rule
the planets and other heavenly bodies. When we offer worship to
these celestials beings, it serves to smoothen the pathway of our
earthly existence, and remove negative forces and misfortunes from
our lives.
Chanting the sacred Mantras while performing the rituals serves to
create a powerful vibration that permeates the atmosphere. These
vibrations can help to neutralize the negativities of society and create
peace and positivity in the world.
We must bear in mind that while it is necessary to perform these
rituals to enhance our lives in the earthly plane, at the same time,
they must always be performed with love and putity of mind. Pooja
must always be practiced with the ultimate goal of transforming our
lives and becoming closer to God.

As Hindus Pooja should be performed daily as Manas Pooja, and as
often as possible, with all the Pooja items, with all family members
present, and taking part in the Pooja. This will foster spirituality,
harmony and love in the home. It also able to sanctify the home and
create a sacred and positive environment wherever you are.

List of Ingredients. These must be made available BEFORE the Pooja
begins. A numbering system will be made, on the 1st---2nd---3rd---4th—
e.t.c. items to be offered, first with the only Mantra being OM. This
will help those who are NOW learning to perform Poojas.
Alter with Murti or picture of Diety-- if you don’t have a Bede, you
can use a fig leaf or sohari leaf, or a flat tray covered with foil, A
Purnakumbha must be prepared. This is with a lotha with water, five
mango leaf sprang ( five leaves, not broken off, at the tip of the
mango branch ), a dry coconut on top of the mango leaves, ( with all
the fibres on the bottom side removed, the TOP side, where the three
eyes are, should remain with the fibre, but formed into a tuft or
point ).
Yellow Rice
A thariah with a handful of rice, sugar and sweet rice.
Two Lothas with water
Clean small towel or Paper towel.
Clothes or cotton rue to offer.
Janeu
Chandan
Hardi or turmeric or saffron.
Kum kum or sindoor
Yellow rice
Doob grass

Neem leaves
Bael leaves
Flowers
Malas
Raksha thread ( red and yellow )
Incence
Coins
Paan leaves ( at least 40 )
Mango leaves
Sooparee (at least 40 )
Ghee
Googool
Thaali for Aarti
One dozen deyas
Wick
Oil
Matches
Camphor
Havan Kund
Dry mango or pitch pine wood, for Havan
Tulsi leaves
A mug of water