Grahan 2016: Celestial Shadows Demystified

2016 will witness a total of four Grahans, including two Surya Grahan and two Chandra Grahan. Whether it’s Surya Grahan or Chandra Grahan, majority of us consider it inauspicious. But, is that true? What are the dates of Grahan in 2016? What about the timings? Unveil all here...

What Is Grahan Or Eclipse?

Know the facts and dates of Grahan in 2016.Grahan is an event where the three celestial bodies - the Sun, the Moon and the Earth partially or completely cover the other two from each other with its shadow. In other words, when one of these three celestial bodies comes in between the other two, it becomes a hindrance for both the planets giving its shadow on each of them.

Grahan or Eclipse is basically divided into two major categories:

  • Solar Eclipse or Surya Grahan: it occurs when the Moon comes in between Earth and Sun.
  • Lunar Eclipse or Chandra Grahan occurs: it when the Earth comes in between Sun and Moon.

Now, when you know what actually a Grahan or eclipse is, astronomically; let’s see what Vedic astrology says about it. As per the Hindu mythology, Grahan holds lots of stories in the epics. The famous legend of Samudra Manthan (churning of the milk ocean) is associated with eclipse. So, before proceeding to know about the dates of Grahan in 2016.

2016 Grahan: Dates

The 4 eclipses of 2016 will be visible in the different parts of the world. As per astrology, it is believed that eclipses affect everyone on the globe (it doesn’t matter where the Grahan is visible). However, the places where the eclipse is visible gets affected majorly, as the harmful rays fall there. Therefore, let’s take a look on the below table of Surya Grahan 2016 & Chandra Grahan 2016, where the Grahan in 2016 will be visible, along with all the details.

Surya Grahan (Solar Eclipse)

Date Type Of Eclipse in 2016 Visible In India Areas in which Grahan will be visible Time(IST)
(Start - Mid - End)
March 9, 2016 Purna Surya Grahan (Total Solar Eclipse) Yes Australia, Palau, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Taiwan, Japan, China, Myanmar, Sri lanka, Indian ocean & North Pacific ocean, India, South Korea, Guinea 05:43 - 06:13 - 06:44 (New Delhi)
September 1, 2016 Kankan Surya Grahan(Annular solar Eclipse) No Africa, Australia, South Western Middle East, Antarctica, the Atlantic Ocean, and the Indian Ocean 11:43 - 14:37 - 17:30

Chandra Grahan (Lunar Eclipse)

Date Type Of Eclipse in 2016 Visible In India Areas in which Grahan will be visible Time (IST)
(Start - Mid - End)
March 23, 2016 Penumbral Lunar Eclipse Only ending is visible Much of Asia, Australia, North America, Much of South America, Pacific, Atlantic, Indian Ocean, Arctic, Antarctica, 15:07 - 17:07 - 19:27
September 16-17, 2016 Penumbral Lunar Eclipse Yes Europe, Asia, Australia, Africa, West in South America, Pacific, Atlantic, Indian Ocean, Arctic, Antarctica, India 22:23 - 00:24 - 26:26

Know the facts and dates of Grahan in 2016.

During the time of Grahan, any auspicious activity is not performed. This custom is followed before the time of Grahan as well. As per astrology, a particular duration before Grahan and the during Grahan is known as “Sutak”. But, before talking about Sutak, let’s talk about the mythological reason of occurrence of Grahan.

Story Behind Surya & Chandra Grahan

The world from the origin has been divided into two major segments the “good” and the “evil”. The Surya (Sun) and Chandra (Moon) are two Gods who are still worshiped in today’s time. But, what could be the reason that they have been related to inauspiciousness?

As per the holy scriptures, it is described that at the time of Samudra Manthan (churning of the milk ocean), when everything submerged under water, the Devtas (God) and Asuras (Demon) together brought back everything into existence. There was an equal distribution of the things among the two, but Amrit (immortality potion) was stolen by Asuras.

Hence, to get Amrit back, Lord Vishnu in the form of Mohini, a beautiful Apsara captivated the attention of Asuras and successfully gained back the Amrit. She started distributing the “Amrit” among the Devtas. Rahu, one of the Asura, understood the trick and sat in between Surya and Chandra. But soon Chandra and Surya realized that Rahu was not one of them.

Hence, Mohini (Bhagwan Vishnu) aggravated by the act beheaded Rahu. Since then, it is believed that Rahu (in the form of snake) retaliates and indulges in war with the Sun and Moon periodically and therefore, Grahan takes place.

Now, when you know the legend associated with eclipse, let’s move further and talk about Sutak and effects of Grahan.

Relationship Between Sutak & Grahan

Sutak is the time under which no good things are done, as this duration is considered unfavorable. Usually, it is believed that during the time of Sutak, one should prohibit from eating and drinking. Sutak is usually observed 12 hours before the Surya Grahan and 9 hours before the Chandra Grahan.

Things To Avoid During Grahan & Sutak

Note: Sutak is applicable in those areas only where Grahan or eclipse is visible.

Things To Avoid During Grahan & Sutak

There are some things, which need to be avoided during the time of Grahan and Sutak. These simple things can be kept in mind for 2016 eclipses:

  • One should avoid having solids or liquids (exception for sick, old and infant).
  • No food item should be stored and eaten after the Grahan or eclipse.
  • Use of cosmetics should be avoided.
  • One should avoid entering in temple and touching the idols.
  • Pregnant ladies are advised to stay indoors and avoid eating during this time because this time might affect the child’s health and disabilities could occur. To avoid the malefic effects of Grahan, pregnant ladies should apply a thin paste of Cow Dung on their stomach.
  • One should take a bath when Grahan starts.

Simple Steps To Be Followed During Grahan & Sutak

These are some of the simple steps that one can follow during the time of Sutak (Grahan duration):

  • Chanting Mantras and meditation can be of great help.
  • During solar eclipse, one can chant this Mantra:

    Om Adityay Vidmahe Divakaraye Dheemahi Tanno Suryah Prachodayat ||
    (ॐ आदित्याय विद्महे दिवाकराय धीमहि तन्नो सूर्य: प्रचोदयात्॥)

  • During Lunar Eclipse one can chant this Mantra:

    Om Kshirputrayay Vidmahe Amrit Tatvaaye Dheemahi Tanno Chadrah Prachodayat||
    (ॐ क्षीरपुत्राय विद्महे अमृत तत्वाय धीमहि तन्नो चन्द्रः प्रचोदयात्॥)

  • The holy Ganga water should be sparkled in the house post the Grahan.
  • Once the Grahan gets over people should take bath, as it is considered to be the sign of purification.
  • Only fresh cooked food should be consumed after the Grahan.

As per the Indian mythology, solar and lunar eclipses play a significant role in the lives of human beings. Hence, from ancient times, special importance is given to the eclipses, be it the time of childbirth (Kundli at the time of birth) or marriage (where the Dasha of all the planets are looked into in order to know how one’s future would be), just to name a few.

Use these simple steps and stay protected from the harmful effects of Chandra Grahan in 2016 and Surya Grahan in 2016. Utilize this article and shield yourself from the harmful effects of Surya as well as Chandra Grahan 2016.

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