By Swami Harshananda
Śālā literally means ‘shed’.
It is a quadrangular shed measuring 20 x 10 aratnis. There are four doors in the four cardinal directions and also windows at the corners. The shed is covered and enclosed with mat. A room for boiling milk and a hut for the sacrificer’s wife are also built around it. Inside the śālā, three fires are lighted. Hence the name agniśālā also.
- Prācīnavaiṅśa means with bamboo beams oriented to the east.
- One aratni is of 1/5 the height of the sacrificer.
- Hence it is called patnīśālā.
- The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore