Brahma-Muhurta - The 48 mins from 1 hr 36 min to 48 min before Sunrise
Post Author: Swami Gaurangapada Date: 2006-05-05 05:30:47
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 before)
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."
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.
diksa nityam brahma-kale subhotthanam pavitrata
. . . (Second Vilasa, 10. initiation, 11. rising every day at brahma- muhurta, 12. cleanliness, . . . Text 19
During brahma-muhurta one should rise from bed and meditate on goddess Yamuna' and at sunrise one should bathe in the Yamuna.
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, . . .
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: http://www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/
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.
MUHURTHAS 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 8 11:36 - 12:24 VIDHI GOOD (EXCEPT MONDAY + FRIDAY) 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
AGAIN ALL MUHURTHAS ARE TAKEN AT 06:00am. SUNRISE, ADJUST ACCORDINGLY