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Title: Brahma-Muhurta - The 48 mins from 1 hr 36 min to 48 min before Sunrise

User: Damodara Svarupa dasa      Date: 2005-02-24 17:05:06


Brahma-Muhurta - The 48 mins from 1 hr 36 min to 48 min before Sunrise -- By Swami Gaurangapada



1 Muhurta = 48 minutes. 1 day = 24 hrs = 30 Muhurtas.

Brahma-Muhurta is the 2nd last Muhurta before sunrise. (1 hr 36 min



The Time of Rising from Bed:


"The time early in the morning, one and a half hours before sunrise,

is called brahma-muhurta. During this brahma-muhurta, spiritual

activities are recommended. Spiritual activities performed early in

the morning have a greater effect than in any other part of the day."



Ref. VedaBase => SPL 48: At Home in India: (In Vrindavana)


*****"The exact time for the mangala-arati would vary according to

the clock, he (Prabhupada) said, but it must always be one-and-a-half

hours before sunrise."*****


The last line of Shri Gurvastakam appears in the Stavamrta-lahari of

Shri Visvanath Chakravarti Thakura as follows:


shrimad-guror astakam etad uccair brahme muhurte pathati prayatnat

yastena vrndavana natha saksat sevaiva labhya januso 'nta eva (9)


"That person who very attentively recites this astakam to Shri Gurudeva

during *** brahma muhurta *** is sure to achieve direct service to

the lotus feet of Lord Shri Krishna, the very life and soul of

Vrindavana, at the end of his life."


Shrila Prabhupada writes in Cc. Madhya 24.331, purport:


"In the early morning hours (known as brahma-muhurta) ##### one

should get up ##### and immediately chant the Hare Krishna mantra, or

at least `Krishna, Krishna, Krishna.' In this way, one should remember



Krishna book, "Lord Krishna's Daily Activities":


Lord Krishna would immediately get up from bed exactly on the

appearance of brahma-muhurta.. After rising from bed, Lord Krishna

would wash His mouth, hands, and feet and would immediately sit down

and meditate on Himself.


Hari-bhakti-vilasa 1.6:


diksa nityam brahma-kale subhotthanam pavitrata


. . . (Second Vilasa, 10. initiation, 11. rising every day at brahma-

muhurta, 12. cleanliness, . . .

Text 19


Garga-samhita 4.8.19:


eka-varam- jalam- pitva dhauta-vastro 'ti-nirmalah

brahme muhurta utthaya caikadasyam- harim- natah


During ekadashi one should be pure-hearted and very clean, wear clean

garments, drink water only once, rise during brahma-muhurta, and bow

down to Lord Krishna


Garga-samhita 4.18.14:


brahme muhurta utthaya dhyatva devim-kalindajam

arunodaya-velayam nadyam- snanam- samacaret


During brahma-muhurta one should rise from bed and meditate on

goddess Yamuna' and at sunrise one should bathe in the Yamuna.


Garga-samhita 5.15.2:


brahme muhurte cotthaya gopyah sarva grhe grhe

dehaly-anganam alipya dipams tatra nirupya ca


In each home the gopis rose at brahma-muhurta, anointed the doorways

and courtyards, arranged the lamps, . . .


Garga-samhita 8.10.7:


brahme muhurte cotthaya rama-krsneti ca bruvan

natva gurum bhuvam caiva tato bhumyam padam nyaset


One should rise at brahma-muhurta, chant the holy names of Lord Krishna

and Lord Balarama, and bow down before one's guru. Only then should

one place his feet on the ground.


Commentary by Swami Gaurangapada:


Shrila Visvanatha Chakravarti Thakura, Gurvastakam Verse 9 Mahatmya

states that Gurvastaka should be sung in the brahma-muhurta to

achieve the lotus feet of Lord Krishna at the end of one's life.


Shrila Prabhupada states that Mangal-arati should always be in the

brahma-muhurta which begins 1 hr 36 min before sunrise and lasts for

48 minutes. He also states that ideally the time for mangal arati

which should be during brahma-muhurta should vary according to the

sunrise time because the brahma-muhurta time always depends on the

time of sunrise. The time of sunrise determines the times of all the

muhurtas in the day.


All the scriptures quoted above state that one should rise from bed

during brahma-muhurta.


Shrila Prabhupada states that brahma-muhurta is the best muhurta for

spiritual practices and also it is the best muhurta of the day

according to the astrological charts.


In temples built for preaching, it may be a practical problem to

daily vary the time of mangal arati therefore Prabhupada fixed it at

4.30 am or 5 am in some places. But then there is also a problem that

the mangal-arati may not always be conducted in the brahma-muhurta

throughout the year especially in the summer seasons when the sun

rises very late. Therefore Prabhupada also said that actually the

timings of the mangal-arati should vary as per the sunrise clock.


And also that one may have to get up much before the brahma-muhurta

to attend a mangal arati which is fixed at 4.30 am but is much before

the brahma-muhurta. For example sunrise is there in Mumbai in the

summer at 7.00 am. So the brahma-muhurta starts at around 5.30 am or

so. Whereas the mangal-arati may be conducted at 4.30 am. So one may

have to take bath around two muhurtas before mangal-arati or even

earlier. We all know the story that because Nanda Maharaj went to

take bath too early before brahma-muhurta, he was captured by

Varuna's men. Ofcourse that was a pastime. This is just a small

detail just to bring to our attn.


Devotees who are doing mangal-arati at home can actually conduct and

sing the mangal-arati daily during brahma-muhurta to get the maximum

advantage of the Gurvastakam prayers and their morning sadhana. They

can easily vary the mangal-arati timings as per the sunrise timings

which is the ideal and best way to do it as suggested by Prabhupada

who said that mangal-arati should always be 1 1/2 hour (1 hour 36

minutes to be exact) before sunrise. They can get up at brahma-

muhurta (alarm can be kept to ring just at the beginning of brahma-

muhurta) from bed as instructed in all the revealed scriptures

(above) and quickly finish their morning duties in maximum of 15 to

20 minutes which leaves them half an hour (total 48 min) to sing and

conduct the mangal-arati and begin japa. This will the ideal

performance of the morning sadhana by the grihasthas. Any devotee can

calculate the brahma-muhurta and mangal-arati timings at his place by

getting the sunrise times of their place from the internet. They can

try out this website for getting the timings for sunrise in their

resp places for the whole year:


If temples also want to try to strictly follow what the scriptures

and Prabhupada instructed in Vrindavan then there are two options:


(1) Either the temples have two to three or four different mangal

arati timings during the year for different seasons in such a way

that the mangal-arati is always or mostly conducted in the brahma-

muhurta. This is done is many Vallabhacharya temples, some Gaudiya

math and other temples.


(2) Or to follow a day by day timetable so that everyday Gurvastakam

will be chanted in the brahma-muhurta. Most temples may consider this

greatly impractical. But there is a way out. Each temple can publish

a small booklet for the whole year about the timings of mangal-arati

daily and any regular visitor can have it so everyone attending

mangal-arati including the temple residents will know what will be

the time of mangal-arati and morning darshan from the booklet. Mangal-

arati timings for the whole month can also be posted outside the

tempel in advance. So everyone can attend accordingly. This is just

an idea to show that it is possible if one wants to strictly

implement the scriptural and Shrila Prabhupada's instructions given

above. I hope this discussion helps someone.


Pratah-Gayatri can be chanted in the Samudram Muhurta(48 min)before

sunrise. Madhyan-Gayatri can be chanted in the appropriate Muhurta

(48 min) at noon. Gauranga-Arti and Sandhya Gayatri can be in the

appropriate Muhurta in the evening around or after sunset.



1 06:00 - 06:48 RUDRA BAD

2 06:48 - 07:36 AHI BAD

3 07:36 - 08:24 MITRA GOOD

4 08:24 - 09:12 PITRU BAD

5 09:12 - 10:00 VASU GOOD

6 10:00 - 10:48 VARA GOOD

7 10:48 - 11:36 VISVADEVA GOOD


9 12:24 - 13:12 SATAMUKHI GOOD

10 13:12 - 14:00 PURUHUTA BAD

11 14:00 - 14:48 VAHINI BAD

12 14:48 - 15:36 NAKTANCARA BAD

13 15:36 - 16:24 VARUNA GOOD

14 16:24 - 17:12 ARYAMA GOOD (EXCEPT SUNDAY)

15 17:12 - 18:00 BHAGA BAD

16 18:00 - 18:48 GIRISHA BAD

17 18:48 - 19:36 AJAPAD BAD

18 19:36 - 20:24 AHIRBUDHNYA GOOD

19 20:24 - 21:12 PUSA GOOD

20 21:12 - 22:00 ASWINI GOOD

21 22:00 - 22:48 YAMA BAD

22 22:48 - 23:36 AGNI BAD

23 23:36 - 24:24 VIDHATR GOOD

24 24:24 - 01:12 CANDA GOOD

25 01:12 - 02:00 ADITI GOOD

26 02:00 - 02:48 JIVA GOOD

27 02:48 - 03:36 VISNU GOOD

28 03:36 - 04:24 YUMIGADYUTI GOOD

29 04:24 - 05:12 BRAHMA VERY GOOD

30 05:12 - 06:00 SAMUDRAM GOOD




Daaso'smi, Swami Gaurangapada.