Agnihotra: Magic Cleansing

Agnihotra or sacrificial fire, is a very powerful scientific method of cleansing the environ. It is known to bring deep healing to fields and forests with ailing plants. As a Reiki healer, I have found it to be very useful in clearing energies. In fact, I have never seen any other cleansing system which is as effective as this is. In Hindu traditions, this process involves a lot of complicated chanting, but one can also do a very basic, simple agnihotra, giving us an option to quickly cleanse our homes.

Unlike normal smoke, the smoke released during an agnihotra does not leave soot and will not tarnish your ceiling. It is also very healing to breathe this smoke in, as it is antibacterial.

Agnihotra is performed either at sunrise or sunset. The timings are important, as you should offer the rice to the fire exactly at the moment of sunrise or sunset. Click here to download the times for your location. I believe performing the homa (agnihotra) at sunrise energizes and charges the house, whereas performing the homa at sunset clears out dull and heavy energies. You could also smudge your crystals in the smoke that is released after the fire dies out.

Note on Timing: If it is not possible for you to do it at the exact time, it can be done later as well – several people I know have done it later and still benefited tremendously.

What you need:

You will need the following to perform an agnihotra:

A copper pyramid shaped vessel to perform the agnihotra in. If you don’t have this, you could make a square hole in the mud in your backyard, preferably near a window so that the smoke can enter and purify your home.

Dry cow dung OR sticks of wood from a tree which oozes milky sap when cut. Eg: mango tree, banyan tree, peepal tree; tulsi twigs are also commonly used.

Ghee. If you don’t have ghee, melt unsalted butter until it is completely clear and the residue separates out. For best results, the ghee should be prepared on a full moon morning.

Whole grain raw brown rice. Today many priests use polished white rice because it is cheap, but it is also useless. All the nutrients are beaten out of this rice and it has nothing to offer to your body, or to the atmosphere when burned. Use brown rice if you can find it.

Matchbox to start the fire with.

Note: Agnihotra kits and also cow-dung are available on Amazon and Flipkart if they are not available at a shop near you.

The Process:

Warm the ghee and soak the pieces of wood or cow dung in it. Arrange it such that there is scope for air to pass through. Arranging it in a mountain shape is helpful because you can then place the lighted piece underneath it.

Light a piece of cow dung or wood, and place it below the other pieces. Prepare the fire about 5 minutes before the sunset or sunrise time.

Exactly at the time of sunset or sunrise, chant the following mantras ONCE EACH.


Om Sooryáya Sváhá (offer rice to fire)
Sooryáya Idam Na Mama

Om Prajápataye Sváhá (offer rice to fire)
Prajápataye Idam Na Mama


Om Agnaye Sváhá  (offer rice to fire)
Agnaye Idam Na Mama

Om Prajápataye Sváhá (offer rice to fire)
Prajápataye Idam Na Mama

After this, optionally you can chant your kuladevta mantra ending it with swaha and an offering to the fire, 21 times times for added benefit. While you are doing the agnihotra, I recommend meditating on the fire and imagining that the fire is burning and cleansing your whole energy field. This amplifies the effect.


Normally, if you are using cow dung and have smeared enough ghee on it, it should burn by itself without any problem. If you are using wood, then you might need to add some ghee to keep the fire alive.

Once the fire is over, let the ashes cool, and then sprinkle it in your garden. Many dying plants are quickly revived with this ash. If you don’t have a garden, you can store the ash in an earthen, glass or wooden pot.

Author of ‘Healing Through Reiki’, Ashwita learned Reiki in 1997, and started teaching it in 2006. She now incorporates other forms of energy healing, as well as hypnotherapy and past life therapy in her work. In her free time, she enjoys cooking, crafts, reading and painting.

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