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Is there any significance to visiting temples on Amavasya Day?

Or are there any restrictions in doing so?

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Yes, there is importance in visiting the temple on Amavasya day.The human mind and moon is closely related. There are some hindu practices based on this fact. Our mind will be powerful and pure if there is full moon. During the krisnapaksha(dark lunar phase), the vulnerability to negative thoughts increase and will be at it's peak on the Amavasya day.

On the Amavasya day, when there is no full moon, the mind will be the weakest and highly vulnerable to impure thoughts. So to overcome this, and to keep our mind calm and clear, it is recommended to go to temples on this day which will help to keep away the negative thoughts.

A related Note to show that mind is related to moon: 'Food for thought', is a great saying actually(no, I am not referring to it's dual meaning). What we consume will become our thoughts. The effect or guna of food we consume is generally reflect on the 4th day in our mind after consuming the food item. Usually we avoid Tamasic food items such as meat, fish or egg in order to make our mind calm and clear, i.e. to have positive thoughts. Rajasic food items will also play a role in creating negative thoughts. So if we consume Tamasic or Rajasic food on 11th day of dark lunar phase, then on the Amavasya day our mind will be most vulnerable to negative thoughts.

So to avoid this hindus follows an ancient practice. On the 11th day of dark lunar phase(Krishnapaksha) they take fasting and only consume the food items having most sathwik value such as vegetables and fruits. They avoid rajasic food items too on this day such as rice. So what is that practice? It is 'Ekadashi fasting'. As mentioned earlier, the effect of these food items (satwik gunas from sathwik food) reflect on the thoughts on the 4th day. Remember we consumed these food items on 11th day of dark lunar phase. So next day is Dwadashi, then thriodashi and Chaturdashi. The 4th day will be always 'Amavasya', where there is no moon and mind highly vulnerable to negative thoughts. Since we have the gunas from sathwik food which we consumed 4 days earlier, then mind will be strong enough to prevent any impure/negative thoughts on the Amavasya day. So in short, when eating the pure food items on 11th day of lunar phase,'ekadashi day', the sathwa gunas of that food items will be reflected in our mind on the Amavasya day. So we will not be affected by negative or impure thoughts or at least able to prevent most of such thoughts. If the mind is pure on this Amavasya day then it will be pure for rest of the days in the month. So what happens if we follow ekadashi fasting on every month? The mind is clear and calm for the whole year.

As you asked in the question, the temple visits on Amavasya day is another way to get rid of negative thoughts on the Amavasya day. It is a simple instruction but the result of this simple practice is very valuable to the whole life.

P.S: So one of the ultimate aim of such practices is to create a community with ideal minds. Hinduism just doesn't simply say 'Loka samastha sukhino bhavanthu', it do have hidden secrets which will make the world a better place. Our ancestors just instructed us to follow these practices, but have not explained the reason. They said just to follow, there will be result. But what happened is that many of the people misunderstood such practices and rituals and categorized them as misdeeds and superstitions. Still the ultimate science of human mind and nature are just hidden beneath such practices.

Reference: A satsang in our locality + http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ekadashi( refered wikipedia for finding the terms, but the essence of the answer is from the satsang. Even though Wikipedia has some ideas related to what is explained in the answer).

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One up for the neat and precise explanation –  sandeep.ganage Aug 29 at 13:10

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