The religious significance of the Adhik month or maas
The Indian tradition and culture always gives the vibes of realizing virtues. It has all the provisions of worshipping, chanting and keeping vrats or fasts as per the Hindu teachings. But, extra significance is granted to donation and virtues over the Vedic religion. And, if you do these rituals during the Adhik month, they you can gain the best results.
In this timeframe, many followers do many kinds of religious work like doing recitation of the scriptures, chanting and jaaps of mantras, performing or doing pujans and havan. Some followers also treat this month by doing parayans, keeping katha of sacred books and by going to satsangs. Vrats are kept for either the whole, half of the day, weekly, bi-weekly or even for the whole 30 days. This depends on the capacity of the followers.
The Astronomical Significance of the month
The whole aspect of the Adhik Month is very unique to the Hindu based Lunar Calendar. The calendar is of course based upon the cycle of the moon. A traditional lunar month is worth 29 and half days, but a solar month is of 30 or 31 days. The solar calendar is made up of 365 days and extra 6 minutes, however the lunar calendar year is worth only 354 days. So, as years go by, the lunar calendar lags behind the solar one. That’s why, both the calendar have a gap of 11 days, one hour, 31 minutes and twelve minutes.
As this lag gets bigger every single year, it becomes a full month in 3 years’ time. Hence, to close the gap, a month is added in the lunar calendar, and it is called the Adhik maas. The maas is put in at the time when the Amvasya and the Surta Sankranti collide. Just like the additional month, the lunar calendar also has a diminishing month, (a part of an 11 month year) it is called the Kshaya month. This happens very rarely and it comes in once in every 140 to 190 years.
However, the extra Adhik maas comes in after every 3 years. Another way to recognize the month is that if Sankranti does not occur within 1 month. If there are 2 Sankranti’s in a single month, thus it becomes a lunar year where months are only 11.
In the Hindu writing, Vasistha Siddhanta, a theory of Sage Vasishta portrays that the Adhik Maas happens after every thirty-two months, sixteen days and eight ghatis. A ghati, in the earlier days was known as 24 minutes. The Kashaya Maas first comes in every 141 years and 2nd moment it arrives is in 190 years or so.
असंक्रान्तिमासोअधिमासाः स्फुटः स्याद द्विसंक्रान्तिमासः क्ष्याख्यः कदाचित
Definition: The maas which does not have Surya Sankranti is known as Adhik Month. And, the maas that has 2 Sankranti’s is known as Kshaya Month.
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