By Swami Harshananda
Aghodaka is a part of the antyeṣṭi or death-rites to be performed immediately after the death of a person. It is the water libation (udaka) that offered for the benefit of the deceased during the period of ceremonial impurity (agha). There are differences of opinion among the dharmaśāstra writers with regard to the number and duration of these water libations. A near relative (called sapiṇḍa) of the deceased, should take water mixed with sesame in the añjali (joined palms) and offer it facing south, with appropriate mantras. It should be offered thrice a day for eleven days from the day of death.
- The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore