Importance of conch (shankh) as per scriptures
Lord Krishna and Arjuna Blowing Shankh in Kurukshetra
Lord Krishna and Arjuna Blowing Shankh in Kurukshetra
First of all let us se the importance of shankh. According to our ancient scriptuires that is Puranas, the shankh was originated during the Churning of ocean by the Deities and Lord Vishnu held it in the form of weapon. As per a holy verse which is regularly chanted during the puja ritual it is mentioned that by the command of Lord Vishnu the deities Moon, Sun and Varun are stationed at the base of the shankh, the deity Prajapati on its surface and all the places of pilgrimage like Ganga and Saraswati in its front portion. Yet another speciality of shankh is that the vibrations emanating on blowing it destroys the disease causing germs in the atmosphere. That is the reason it has a important place in Ayurved and medicine.

Let us see a subtle drawing which explains us the importance of shankh.

In this subtle drawing we can see that the yellow coloured circles of chaitanya are being emitted from shankh in the atmosphere. The subtle blue coloured dots depicting devotion are projected like rays in straight line. The pink circles are formed of particles of bliss (anand) and they are constantly active.

The direction of the space within the shankh divides it into two types. When the space is towards your right when you hold the shankh with its tip facing in frontal direction and with the space facing upwards then it is right sided shankh and if the space faces to left then it is a left sided shankh. Generally a left sided shankh is preferred for the puja ritual. Now days so many Shanks of different shapes are available in the market. There are some figured works also on their surface. Thus one gets confused as to how a genuine shankh be identified? The simple test is that without blowing the shankh if you hear pleasant sound when you bring it near to your ear then it is a genuine one.

Blowing of shankh in puja ritual : 

The shankh is used in two ways in a puja ritual. One for blowing before the start of ritual and other for actual puja ritual. The shankh which is used for blowing should not be kept for puja.

Blowing of shankh has special significance in puja ritual. It has been mentioned in ‘Varaha Puran’ that one should not open the door of temple without first blowing the shankh. The left sided shankh is blown before the start of puja or performance of arti. There are three types of frequencies in the atmosphere namely sattva dominant, raja dominant and tama dominant. Among them the raja dominant and tama dominant frequencies generate distressing vibrations. The sattva dominant frequencies get attracted to the place of puja ritual but these frequencies are opposed by the raja and tama dominant frequencies so that they do not reach the place of puja and thus the flow of sattva frequencies is hindered.

When the shankh is blown before the start of puja energy is emitted from the shankh. This energy reduces the strength of distressing frequencies. Besides a protective armour of chaitanya (divine consciousness) is formed around the articles of puja.

There is another benefit too. That is when the shankh is blown the activated energy of Lord Vishnu in the universe gets attracted towards the place of worship which is not only beneficial to the person who is blowing the shankh but also to all those who hear it.

Just as the shankh is blown before the start of puja, it is also blown before an arti. The objective behind this being to sustain the deity’s chaitanya attracted to the place of puja ritual and the pure atmosphere generated because of the sattvik frequencies, for a long period.

Effect of energy emitted from blowing of shankh

Let us see how the energy is emitted from the blowing of shankh and what exactly happens with the help of a subtle drawing. Here we have to take into consideration the fact that while the vibrations of a subtle drawing are three dimensional we see them in the subtle drawing in a two dimensional form. For example the sphere will appear as a circle. Now let us look at the subtle drawing:

As soon as the shankh is blown the frequencies of divine energy (shakti) are emitted into atmosphere due to sound generated. These energy frequencies are seen in red colour. Along with these energy frequencies yellow circles of chaitanya are also projected in the atmosphere. You can also see the pink particles of Bliss being emitted in the atmosphere. This increases the proportion of shakti (energy), chaitanya and anand in the environment and that is why the negative energies get distressed and run away.

Thus it has become clear to us the importance of blowing shankh during puja ritual. The blowing of shankh makes the atmosphere holy and pure and conducive for the spiritual practice (sadhana) of the individual. Thus it becomes easier for an individual to receive maximum sattvik frequencies emanating from the deities.
Important points to be noted while using a shankh

 Now let us now see some useful points about shankh

•Never use shankh meant for blowing in a puja ritual. They should be separate.

•Never offer water to the deity by shankh used for blowing.

•Do not keep two shankhs for worship in a temple room.

•Never touch the Shiva pindi with shankh during a puja ritual.

•Never use shankh for giving holy bath to deities Shiva and Sun. 

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A conch should be blown, when beginning any ritualistic worship and prior to the Arti. By blowing the conch 3 times before beginning any ritualistic worship, movement of negative energies in the environment is reduced. This helps in reducing the obstacle of distressing vibrations and allows the flow of Sattva predominant frequencies of the Deities. This further creates a protective sheath or an armour of Chaitanya around the various items used in the ritualistic worship.

Any ritualistic worship is concluded by performing the Arti. During Arti, the frequencies of the principles of Deities functional in the universe are attracted to the venue of the worship in large numbers. The raja-tama frequencies can create obstacles to the flow of these frequencies. By blowing the conch, the raja-tama frequencies disintegrate; that is why it is blown prior to an Arti. This purifies the environment and helps in preserving the Divine consciousness generated through the ritualistic worship for a longer period. Thus we derive maximum benefit from the sattva predominant frequencies of Deities attracted to the venue of the Arti. (Divine knowledge received through the medium of Ms Anjali Gadgil 7.1.2005, 3.15 pm)

How to blow a conch?

A. Why should the person blowing the conch raise his neck?

The person blowing the conch should raise his neck upwards (towards God) and fully concentrate on the task at hand. When blowing the conch, the eyes should be closed and a spiritual emotion should be nurtured that one is beckoning the subtler frequencies of the unmanifest, destroyer form of God'. This posture activates the Sushumnanadi (Central Channel) in the body of the conch-blower. It also helps in maintaining a perfect balance between the raja-tama particles in the frequencies related to the absolute air and absolute fire elements that emanate from the mouth. Thus, as per the requirement - the saviour and destroyer principles of the Deity get activated.

B. When blowing the conch, close the eyes and cultivate a bhav that the marak (destroyer) frequencies of the unmanifest form of God are being received from above.

C. Blowing of the conch in a single breath: As far as possible, take a deep breath and fill the lungs with air, and then blow the conch in a single breath. This way the resonance of the vibrations (the resonance of subtle sound in the environment) lasts for a longer period. Due to the strength of the sound vibrations in the resonance, it becomes possible to tear apart the black covering surrounding the aerial body of the negative energies in the vicinity in a short time.

D. The sound of the conch should go from a low to a high pitch: When blowing the conch, the sound should start from a low and go to a high pitch which should be maintained till the conch-blower stops.

E. Manifestation of negative energies due to the sound of the conch: Due to the sound energy generated by blowing the conch, subtler frequencies flowing down from the universe get activated. They cause disintegration of raja-tama particles in the atmosphere within a short time. Due to the momentum of frequencies of sound energy emanating from the conch, there is friction between raja–tama particles, resulting in subtle flames. As a result the sheath around the aerial bodies of negative energies starts to burn. That is why negative energies are unable to tolerate the sound of a conch. They are compelled to manifest because of this sound. However, some of the more powerful sorcerers from the negative subtle region pretend to be unaffected, despite the distress caused by the sound of the conch!

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