Meaning of Yagya: According to Vyākaranna (Grammar) and Neruktham (Dictionary) authors, Yagya meaning evolved from Dēvapūja (Praising the materials of nature), Sangathikaranna (Unity) and Dāna (Donation) words.
Dēvapūja: Praising and knowing the properties of materials of nature, Praising and respecting the knowledgeable persons and Scholars by giving them appropriate gifts is called Dēvapūja.
Sangathikaranna: Using materials like Agni (Fire, electricity, heat etc.,), Vāyu etc., appropriately and learning from Scholars about technology, God and Unification is called Sangathikaranna. Using materials properly for development of society by using technology is also called Sangathikaranna.
Dāna: Purification of Jal, Vāyu and other materials of nature by scarification of materials like Ghee, Sandal wood, Kasthuri etc in Agni is called Dāna. Donating money, education, cows etc for appropriate cause is also called Dāna.
To this word Yagya many other words are joined and used in literature. For example in Geeta, we can find words like Thapo Yagya, Swādhyāya Yagya and Gyana Yagya.
Difference between Sroutha Yagya and Smārtha Yagya.
Yagya done with Vēda Mantras and Shlōkās from Brāhmannās are called Sroutha Yagyas. By following Vēda Mantras description and that explained in Brāhmannās by Rishis and performing Yagya with strict penance is called a Sroutha Yagya.
All others using Smruthi are called Smārtha Yagyas. Gruha Sūthras Yagyas are considered as Smruthi Yagyas.
These two Yagyas are divided into three categories (1) Nīthiyak, (2) Kāmya and (3) Nīmithik respectively.
Nīthiyak Yagya is that Yagya which has to be performed compulsorily by every human being.
Kāmya Yagya is that Yagya which is performed for some definite wish to be fulfilled.
Nīmithik Yagya is performed when a calamity strikes or when sudden fund raising event takes place.
According to Gōpatha Brāhmanna, 21 types of Yagyas are described. These are (1) 7 Pāka Yagyas, (2) 7 Havir Yagyas and (3) 7 Sōma Yagyas respectively.
According to Kāthyāyana Sroutha Sūtrās, the following are the names of Yagyas and Karmās.
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