Shubh Naag Panchami

Stories (lore) behind Naag Panchami

Nāgas are said to be divine beings that rule the underground (pātāla), born from the third wife of sage Kaśyapa, and are considered step-brothers of gods (devatās).

It is also thought that Nāgas were a tribe that lived during the Indus Valley Civilisation and worshipped snakes. When the Aryans became established in India, some of Nāga traditions were adopted by them, which includes snake worship.

The Pāṇḍavas had performed a snake sacrifice in order to establish their kingdom at Indraprastha. This led to the destruction of the forests, which displaced/killed the serpents (Nāgas). Arjuna’s great-grandson Janamejaya performed the snake sacrifice to take revenge for his father’s death by the Nāga Takṣaka. However, after intervention from Astika, Janamejaya stopped the sacrifice, sparing the Nāgas. This is said to have happened on the day of Nāgapañcamī.

Nāga-pañcamī is celebrated in Nepal in association with the fight between Garuḍa and the great serpent. It is also said that the Kathmandu valley used to be a lake inhabited by Nāgas, which was then settled by humans. This enraged the serpents, so people worshipped them to pacify them.

In parts of southern India, nāgapañcamī is celebrated to give blessings to siblings. Married women usually visit their parents’ homes to celebrate. In parts of Maharashtra, snakes are dug out and fed with milk and rats and then carried in containers to temples. Swings are tied on tree branches for women to swing in the pleasant weather of śrāvaṇa month.

Naag Panchami 2021

Naag Panchami Hindi 2021

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Naag Panchami Sanskrit 2023

अनन्तो वासुकिः पद्मो महापद्ममश्च तक्षकः।
कुलीरः कर्कटः शङ्खश्चाष्टौ नागाः प्रकीर्तिताः॥

ananto vāsukiḥ padmo mahāpadmamaśca takṣakaḥ।
kulīraḥ karkaṭaḥ śaṅkhaścāṣṭau nāgāḥ prakīrtitāḥ॥

Hindi translation:
अनन्त, वासुकि, पद्म, महापद्म, तक्षक, कुलीर, कर्कट, और शङ्ख—ये प्रसिद्ध आठ नाग हैं।

English translation:
Ananta, Vasuki, Padma, Mahapadma, Takshaka, Kulira, Karkata, and Shankha—these are the famous eight Nagas.

Shri Naga Stotram - 3

Here is a short description of each Naag.

  • अनन्त (ananta): Also known as Adi Shesha, he is infinite and the bed of Mahavishnu, holding the universe on his hoods.
  • वासुकि (vāsuki): A devoted serpent associated with Shiva, Vasuki served as the churning rope during the Samudra Manthan and is considered the ring on Shiva's finger.
  • तक्षक (takṣaka): Noted for his role in the story of Parikshit's death, he was saved from a Yagna by Astika and has a terrible form with potent venom.
  • कर्कट (karkaṭa): A serpent who saved Nala from a forest fire and played a crucial role in the Nalacarita, providing guidance to Nala.
  • शङ्ख (śaṅkha): A fiery serpent with many heads but not harmful, he was among the important Nagas that accompanied Balarama to Hades upon his death.
  • पद्म (padma): Holding the north-west part of the earth aloft, Padma has a single head and a red colour resembling a lotus.
  • महापद्म (mahāpadma): Also known as Shanka Padma, he holds a prime place among Nagas with a trident mark on his hood and white colour.
  • कुलीर (kulīra): Occupying a significant place in astrology, Gulika has strong venom and ferocious nature, instilling fear in others.

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    • astrobestpandit on

      Unveil the significance of Naag Panchami through the lens of Sanskrit wisdom. Explore the rich cultural heritage and traditions in this captivating article by Resanskrit.

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