The lamp is worshipped with fragrant flowers and offered to Lord Yamraj chanting the following mantra:
“Mrityuna Pashhastena Kaalen Bhayarya Sah
Trayodashya Deepdanatsuryajah Preeyataameeti”
As Yamuna is considered the sister of Yamaraj, so it is religiously significant to bathe in the holy waters of Yamuna on this auspicious day. Ideally, one should keep a fast the entire day but in case, it is not possible, a lamp should definitely be offered to Lord Yamraj.
“Kaartiksyasite Pakshe Trayodashya Nishamukhe
According to an ancient tale, one day, Lord Yamaraj asked his assistants whether they felt pain while taking the life of a person. The assistants replied that though it is their duty to take lives, they have felt extremely bad while taking life of a prince who died untimely. It was just four days that the prince had married and his family members were devastated with his death. The assistants of Lord Yamaraj told him that on that day, when they witnessed the grief and pain of the family members of the prince, they felt ashamed of their work. Hearing their sad tale, Lord Yamaraj said that if a person offers a lamp to him on the occasion of Dhanteras, then his death will not happen untimely.
Kartik Krishna Trayodashi or Dhanteras is also the day to pay our respects to Dhanwantari, the lord of Ayurveda. According to legend, on this day, lord Dhanwantari, the divine physician, emerged with golden pitcher full of amrita or ambrosia in his hand from the sea when it was being churned by the gods and the demons.
The Hindus feel indebted to Acharya Dhanwantari for making them aware of the Ayurvedic way of healing. As lord Dhanwantari is the divine physician, the worship of the god Bighna Vinashak (Destroyer of obstacles), in the first hour of the day in order to acquire health and longevity is prescribed. During the evening, the white owl, the vehicles of goddess Lakshmi along with lord Kubera are worshipped to attain wealth and prosperity. One of the reasons why Dhanteras is special is that it includes worshipping Lord Kubera who is the treasurer of wealth and riches.
It is considered extremely auspicious to buy silver utensils on this occasion. The rich people buy valuable metals like gold and silver and common man or even the poor buy utensils of brass, copper or bell-metal which can, in hard days, bring money in exchange.
On this day the people take cold bath in the morning. The businessmen close their Account and Ledger books and assemble at the place of worship and take food in the evening. After the puja rituals are over, Dhanteras vrata katha is read. Dhanteras is a wonderful festival that enables you to welcome health, wealth, happiness, prosperity and peace in life.
Do's and Don'ts Dhanteras
- On Dhantrayodashi, do not make unnecessary expenditure; buy things that you need for use.
- On Dhantrayodashi, prayers should be offered to Dhanwantari early in the morning. By worshipping Dhanwantari, one is blessed with a good health. After the pooja, Yama tarpan rituals should be observed.
- On this auspicious day, avoid borrowing or lending money to anyone.
- It is extremely auspicious to buy metal utensils, gold and silver ornaments in the afternoon. It is believed that doing so marks the arrival of Goddess Lakshmi into your house.
- In the evening, light several diyas in the pooja room to brighten it up with light.
- Around 8 pm, sit in the pooja room, take a red cloth and place Kuber Yantra, Sphatik Shreeyantra, Lord Kuber’s image and idol, Goddess Lakshmi’s image and idol on it. Then worship these by offering vermilion (roli), mauli thread, rice, dhoop, flowers, diya and naivaidya.