The word Preta means Pra Itha or the departed and Atma means the soul. If a person dies with his desires unfulfilled or with greed, the departed soul said to become preta or pretatma. Such a pretatma is said to suffer from unbearable hunger and thirst. In order to provide peace or make them attain Moksha, funeral rites have to be performed by the survivors, relatives or friends. The priest or astrologer has to be consulted before taking up this Samskara.
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