bheemana amaavasya

Bheemana Amavasya, also known as Bhima Amavasi, is an important Hindu ritual performed by women in Karnataka. Bheemana Amavasya is observed on the no moon day (Amavas) in the Kannada month of Ashada (July – August). On the day women pray for the well being of their husbands and brothers. The ritual is also known as Deepasthambha Pooja.
Bheemana Amavasi Vrata is dedicated to Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati. Married and unmarried women and girls on Bhima Amavasai pray for the long life of their husbands, brothers and other male members in the house.
A pair of lamps made using mud known as Kalikamba represents Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati on the day. Special pujas are done on the auspicious day to appease the divine couple. Thambittu Deepa or Thembittu lamp made from flour is made on the occasion and lit to cool all bad emotions like anger, frustration etc.
The ritual is based on the story of a young girl who was married to a dead prince. She accepted her faith and the day after marriage she performed the Bheemana Amavasya puja with mud lamps. Impressed by her devotion Shiva and Parvati appeared before her and brought back the prince to life. The mud kadubu prepared by her was broken by Lord Shiva. No deep fried or shallow fried food is eaten on the day. Married women perform the Bheemana Amavasai ritual for nine years after marriage.
How to observe Bheema Ammavasi?
  • A pair of mud kalikamba lamps representing Shiva and Parvati or picture of Shiva and Parvati or Silver lamps.
  • Dough balls or Kadubus with coins hidden in them (Bhandara).
  • Thambittu lamps or traditional lamps
  • Turmeric roots
  • Yellow thread
  • Nombu sacred thread (usually made instantly or bought)
  • Cotton
  • Local flowers
  • Betel leaves
  • Betel nuts
  • bananas
  • Unbroken coconut
  • Fruits
 All things needed for the Puja are arranged. There are no strict rules you can always substitute things. House is cleaned and decorated, especially the Puja area. Fried things are not prepared on the day.
The Puja
 The Kalikamba lamps are worshipped on the day. An archana with turmeric and kumkum is performed. Any shlokas dedicated to Shiva and Parvati is recited. Gowri Puja performed chanting the ‘Diva Shri Gowri’ chant. You can also lit the traditional lamps. Special prayer for the occassion – Shalabaranam kala deepika – maadi; Naaru batti neeru ennai nerudhalu. Nivedya is offered and it includes coconut, betel leaves, betel nuts, fruits, bananas. An arati using Karpura is performed while offering the Naivedya.
Nombu sacred thread is tied on the right hand wrist.
Breaking of Bhandara or Kadubus
 A half-dozen or a couple of coin-stuffed kadubu is placed on a platter and male members in the family are invited. Small kids are asked to smash the kadubu. The kids keep the coin and take the blessings. Elder male members bless the females in the house. Betel leaves, sweets, fruits are distributed among female friends and relatives.
Bheemana Amaavasya Katha

Bheemana Amavasya or Bheema Ammavasai Vrata observed in Karnataka on the Amavasi (new moon day) in Ashada month is based on an unparalleled devotion of a young girl for Lord Shiva and Parvati. Women and girls conduct special puja on the day for a happy and prosperous life and for the wellbeing of brothers and husbands. The popular story, or Katha, associated Jyoti Bhimeshwara puja is known as Bhagirati Nadi Hogi.

Legend has it that once a Brahmin couple decided to travel to Kashi to pray to Lord Shiva. But they had a daughter, a young girl, and the couple was not ready to take her with them as they did not want to risk her life. The journey was long and they were not sure whether they will make it safely. So the Brahmin couple decided to leave the young girl with their elder son. The elder son was married and they left the daughter with him and said that if they did not return he should get her married. The parents did not return after a year and the brother and his wife was worried that they would have to marry her off. He did not want to spend money on her and instead he had an eye on the property and money that the father had left for this daughter.  The brother one day happened to hear a strange announcement made by the King of the region. The son of the King died yesterday and he would like to have him married before he is taken to pyre.  No one was ready to take the offer but the greedy brother did. He and his wife dressed up the young girl and took her to the King and got her married to the dead prince in exchange of gold.  After the marriage ceremony, the king, the soldiers and the young bride carried the corpse to Bhagirathi River to burn it. But suddenly there was a heavy rain and all the people except the young bride left. The King asked her to come with him as she is now a princess but she did not go with him. Instead, she decided to stay with the dead prince.  Looking at the dead body of the prince she thought this would not have happened had her parents were here.  The night passed and next day was Ashada Amavasi and the puja day.  She remembered her parents observing the Vrata. She took bath and dug up clay from the riverbank and made two kalikamba lamps. She made wick from fiber of a fallen tree and did the rituals as her parents used to do. She also made mud balls instead of the kadubus.  While she was performing the puja, a young couple appeared there and asked her what she was doing with the corpse and what was this puja for. She explained her fate and said she was now alone and there was no one to break her Bhandara or mud balls. The young man agreed to break it. He smashed the balls and blessed her – Dheerga Sumangali Bhava (Have a long and happy married life).  The young girl smiled and said how can that be, my husband lies there dead. The couple looked at the dead prince and asked her why she has not woken him up. Go and wake him up. Hesitantly she shook the prince and he opened his eyes. She could not believe her eyes. Soon she realized who the couple were but when she looked up they were gone.  She prayed to the divine couple – Shiva and Parvati – and narrated to the prince all that happened.  When the king and the courtiers returned to burn the corpse, they found the young girl and prince praying to Shiva and Parvati. The word soon spread and from that day people started strictly observing Bheema Amavasi in Ashada month with the kalikamba lamps – lamps made from mud.

Why Bheema’s name is there in this festival?

– Bheema is one of the name of Shiva/Mano Niyamaka Rudradevaru who is the main god for this festival.


6 thoughts on “bheemana amaavasya

  1. Am unable to understand why and how “Bheema” is associated with this festival.Has it got to do something with Bheema the mighty brother among Pandavas and his devoted wife demon Hidambhi.?

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