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Importance and Significance of Dhanur Maasam

As per Vedic astrology, the period when Sun transits from one rasi (zodiac sign) to the other, it is known as Sankramanam, This occurs once in every month, usually on the 14th / 15th / 16th of the month.

When Sun enters the zodiac sign of Sagittarius i.e Dhanur rasi, it is known as Dhanu Sankramanam. The one month period of Sun's stay in this zodiac sign is known as Dhanur Masam. This transition normally occurs on 16th December every year. This is not a separate month in the Hindu calendar like the other 12 months of the calendar. Dhanur masam begins in the Hindu month of Margasira and ends in the Hindu month of Pushya.

Dhanur Masam ends when Sun enters the zodiac sign of Capricorn i.e Makara rasi which marks Makara Sankramanam. This day is known as 'Uttarayana Punyakalam' as Sun starts its northward journey from this day.

Religiously Dhanur Masam is an auspicious month and is dedicated to Lord Vishnu. Special poojas are performed in Vishnu temples particularly in South India. Devotees of Lord Vishnu worship Him in the early mornings during the Brahma Muhurtam i.e between 4 a.m to 6 a.m. This period is also known as Arunodaya Kalam. Devotees perform pooja by reciting Vishnu Sahasranamam, Purusha Sooktam, Naryana Stotram etc.

They offer yadhasakti (as per affordability) naivedyam like pongali, chakra pongali, pulihora, dadhojanam etc to Lord Vishnu who is well noted for being Bhojana priya i.e the one who is fond of delicious food.

This month is very specially celebrated in Lord Venkateswara Temple at Tirumala with special worships and special alankaarams to the Lord. During the entire month, Tirruppavai is recited in the Vishnu temples. Goda Devi also known as Andal was a staunch devotee of Lord Krishna. She adored the Lord and thus got a special place for herself beside Him. During Dhanur Masam, Andal is also worshiped in the Vishnu temples along with Lord Vishnu. Vaikuntha / Mukkoti Ekaadasi is the most auspicious day of this month. Devotees throng Vishnu temples on this day and have the darshan of Lord Vishnu from Vaikuntha Dwaram i.e the North entrance gate of temple which is opened on this day only.

A special / unique sweet called Dhanur Muvva is prepared and sold in the districts of South Odisha and North coastal Andhra Pradesh.

This year Dhanur Masam is from December 16th, 2017 (Saturday) to January 15th, 2018 (Monday).

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