The Preliminary Rituals for Netronmīlanam
The Netronmīlanam ritual itself is begun with Netronmīlana homam, a fire ceremony conducted to empower the ritual and to begin the process of opening channels to the inner realms. Various sacred herbs are used for the homam. Sattvic Ayurvedic herbs with nervine properties help to calm the mind and stimulate spiritual awareness like calamus, brahmi, amalaki, bhringaraj, sandalwood, costus root, spikenard, tulsi, sugarcane, darbha grass, black pepper, kakkola, netrabala, sage, angelica, and turmeric are used. Herbs which are good for eyesight and increase vision and perception in general and used also like triphala, dashmula, bhringaraj, netrabala, ginger, gudduci, licorice, lotus, carrot seed, dill seed, chamomile, and shatavari. Herbs which open channels to the inner realms are also used like turmeric, bhringaraj, brahmi, calamus, sandalwood, agar, camphor, tulsi, shalaparni, cardamom, sweet grass, cedar, juniper, comfrey, and shaileya. Other substances like goat’s milk, honey, limes, pomegranates, bananas, tamarind, and rice pudding (charu) are offered as well. Various gems and minerals are used in the offerings also like gold, silver, copper, diamonds, yellow sapphire, blue sapphire, gomed, cat’s eye, tin, agate, and pearls. Gold, silver, copper, diamond, yellow sapphire, and agate are also used to produce various implements for the rituals also. The homams are conducted with Vedic and Āgamic mantras related to spiritual vision. The netra mantra, “vauṣaṭ” is important and used often in these rituals. During the homam, ghee and honey to be used in Netronmīlanam is blessed and empowered for the ceremony by offering a small portion into the sacred fire. We are further empowering the rituals by conducting a series of homams to be performed after the conclusion of a series of eye-opening practices.