Amavasya is another name for the new moon. Today, i.e 20th of February 2023 is Amavasya. Whenever Amavasya falls on a Monday, it is known as "Somvati Amavasya." Amavasya, also known as the new moon day, is an important day in the Hindu calendar. It is observed every month when the moon is not visible in the sky. People honor their ancestors during Amavasya, which is regarded as a day of reflection and purification.
Amavasya is considered an auspicious day to perform various rituals and ceremonies. Since many people believe that the spirits of ancestors come down to earth to bless their descendants, this day is often marked by tarpan or pitru paksha puja. It is a puja that is intended to make the Lord happy for the happiness of our departed ancestors.
According to the Hindu calendar, Pitru Paksha (Shradh) is a 16-day period where you pay respect to your ancestors who have left this materialistic world. Offering prayers, food, and daan to the less fortunate as well as the temple priests serves as a way to commemorate the occasion. The purpose of all rituals and prayers is to honor and remember ancestors who have departed for the heavenly abode and to wish them well wherever they may be.
On this day, it is said, the ancestors' spirits descend to bless the descendants of their ancestors. As a result, many people engage in tarpan or pitru paksha, a ritual in which they pay respect to and ask for the blessings of their ancestors. Additionally, it is a day on which to pray to Lords Shiva and Vishnu.
Fasting on Amavasya is believed to be highly beneficial for spiritual growth and purification. If you wish to fast on this day, here are some guidelines to follow:
It is important to pick one particular day of the month to observe the Amavasya fast and stay consistent with it.
All forms of non-vegetarian food, tobacco, and alcohol.
Put on fresh clothes every morning after you get out of the shower.
Recite sacred mantras and make offerings to the gods Shiva and Vishnu.
While doing this fast, it is important to avoid eating grains and lentils and only sattvic, or light, foods like fruits, milk, and nuts should be eaten.
As a final step, eat a light meal to break your fast after sunset.
To make this day a little more wholesome, you can also donate food, clothing, and money on this day.