Yajnyas (or Homas) have existed on earth ever since man has inhabited the planet. Vedas do not date, as most people think, from a period three to four thousand years ago. Vedas were revealed to mankind at the time of creation. Yajnyas were performed in their original and pure form for a variety of purposes.
The basic concept of Yajnyas is that with their performance changes are induced in the atmosphere which evoke intended effects on the whole biosphere. Many civilizations and cultures have existed on this planet and in the course of time they have vanished because they no longer followed the precepts given in Vedas for mankind’s happy life on the planet. Yajnyas consist of an offering to fire which can never involve flesh and blood. For example, in Agnihotra, the offering consists of ghee and rice.
Since mankind’s earliest beginnings, fire has been an object of religious worship. Even the first word in the Rigveda is “Agni” which means fire. With this first word, man’s attention is directed to the importance of fire. Burning flesh and blood offerings in Yajnyas is a major example of proper performance gone bad. Nowadays the atmosphere is overloaded with force and violence. This is a direct consequence of wrong performance of Yajnyas or their total non-performance.
From mankind’ s recent history it is known that the disappearance of Yajnyas went hand in hand with the appearance of Buddha. Actually, Buddha spoke against the performance of Yajnyas wherein flesh and blood were used as offerings. On the other hand, He encouraged people to perform pure (Ahimsa) Yajnyas instead.
With His discouragement of Yajnyas consisting of flesh and blood offerings, Buddha fulfilled one part of His Divine Mission. The other part of the Divine Mission, namely the resuscitation of the purifying Vedic Yajnyas was the allotted task of the Kalki Avatar, Parama Sadguru Shree Gajanan Maharaj. He said, “I have come to fulfill what was left unfulfilled at the time of the Avatar, Buddha. ”
As part of his mission, a Maha Somayag was performed in 1969 under the guidance of Parama Sadguru Shree at Shivapuri, near Akkalkot in Maharashtra, India. This was the first time in 2,500 years that a Somayag was performed strictly according to the injunctions of Vedas in which there was no sacrifice of animals, no flesh and blood offerings, not even symbolically.
The effects of a Somayag last 80 to 100 years. This unparalleled Somayag undertaken in 1969 ushered in the revival of the science Yajnya (fire purification) in its purest form.