Snakes are worshipped across many ancient cultures in the world. Considered to be one of the most powerful creatures on the planet due to their poisonous nature and venom, Naag Panchami or Naag Puja in India dates back to 3,000 BCE since Indus Valley Civilization. The Naga tribe majorly celebrated the festival.
In Mahabharata, one of the ancient epics of India, the king Janamejaya performs a yagna to destroy the entire race of Nagas. This was to avenge the death of his father, King Parikshit, who fell victim to the deadly bite of the snake Takshaka. However, the famous sage Astika went on a quest to stop Janamajeya from performing the Yagna and save the sacrifice of snakes.
The day this sacrifice was stopped was Shukla Paksha
Panchmi, now celebrated as Naag Panchami throughout India.
Snakes or Nagas play a significant role in several Hindu scriptures and epics. Books like Mahabharata, Narada Purana, Skanda Purana, and Ramayana have several stories associated with snakes.
Another story is associated with Lord Krishna and the serpent Kaliya where Krishna fights with Kaliya at the Yamuna River and finally forgives Kaliya with the promise not to bother the humans again. According to Garuda Purana, worshipping snakes on Nag Panchami brings good fate and prosperity to a devotee.
Sri Naagdeva is worshipped on with milk, turmeric, panchamrit (5 nectars: milk, sugar, honey, yoghurt and jaggery) with Naag Sukta mantras or Rudra Sukta mantras either on Naagdeva idol or a Shivling.
Naag Panchami Pooja cleanses our DNA energies and auric fields, as the Rahu and Ketu axis in our charts represents Naagdeva in our aura. This clears past birth misprints and Rahu and Ketu Naag doshas are cleared.
If Naagdeva is kuldeva, or your ancestral God, He should be worshipped today as this energy is connected to muladhara chakra.
Since Shravan is considered the month of Lord Shiva and snakes are dear to Him, as He wears Vasuki around His neck, Naga Panchami is celebrated at almost all the Shiva temples across India. There are many Naag temples that people visit on this day to offer their prayers. Some communities also bring home the idols of snakes to worship. People dress in new clothes, collect their offerings for the snakes, and chant a particular mantra. The centre of the offerings is the milk, as the devotees believe it would keep their families safe from the snake bite. Some people also consider it wrong to dig the earth and use black iron utensils on Naag Panchami.
Om Namah Shivaya
Sri Nag Devtay Namah