Somayāga

From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia

By Swami Harshananda

Sometimes transliterated as: Somayaga, SomayAga, Somayaaga


Somayāga literally means Vedic sacrifice using soma juice’.

Vedic sacrifices, called yāgas and yajñas, are generally classified into three groups, out of which the Somayāgas form the last. They are called so since the soma juice is the main ingredient of the oblations. There are seven Somayāgas which are the models. They are:

  1. Agniṣṭoma
  2. Aptoryāma
  3. Atirātra
  4. Atyagniṣṭoma
  5. Sodaśī
  6. Ukthya
  7. Vājapeya

A Somayāga needs mantras from all the three Vedas and also the sixteen ṛtviks or priests. They are:

  1. Ṛgveda
  2. Yajurveda
  3. Sāmaveda

The soma juice is extracted from the creeper three times. The extraction is called prātasavana, mādhyandinasavana and tṛtīyasavana, done in the morning, noon and late afternoon respectively.


References

  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore