From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia

By Swami Harshananda

Śunāsiriya literally means ‘guide of plough’.

Origin of Śunāsiriya[edit]

Śunāsiriya is the last of the four Vedic sacrifices grouped under the cāturmāsyas. It is referred to even in the Ṛgveda.[1] The word Sunā-sīra may refer to any of the following deities:

  1. Vāyu and Surya
  2. Surya and Indra
  3. Indra and two forms of Agni

Rituals of Śunāsiriya[edit]

Offering havis[2] in this sacrifice is considered as very important. It consists of puroḍāśa[3] cakes in twelve mud plates and also milk. This sacrifice can be performed at any time during the year. There is no uttaravedi.[4] The fire is not produced by araṇis. Attaining wealth and success in life are the twin purposes of performing this sacrifice.


  1. Ṛgveda 4.57.5 and 8
  2. Havis means special oblations.
  3. Puroḍāśa means rice.
  4. Uttarvedi means high alter erected in the east.
  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore