Pratikraman is an important religious ritual of Jainism
. The vitality and strength of sanyam is in kriya and kriya`s strength is pratikraman. Samayika is a goal that is to be achieved and pratikraman is a tool and an important means of internal purification of heart. Pratikraman usually means to turn back from shortcomings or mistakes. Out of all essentials, Pratikraman is very significant. In the divine world, there are very few religions that have talked about `turning back`. Every religion speaks of going forward and it is also the desire of every individual. It is thus a special accomplishment of Jainism, to come back from where one does not belong; i.e. where all impurities due to karma-bandh exist. Normally during the day, at different times, six essential rituals should be performed, but if one can not perform them during the daytime, they can perform it later. In Devasi pratikraman, all six essentials are combined.
After performing all the religious rituals one needs to perform the Pachhakhan at last, but it is necessary to do Pachhakhan before sunset. This makes it more fruitful, so in the Shvetambara sect it is done in the beginning. One of the best features in Jainism is that it offers many alternatives, if one is unable to perform as recommended. Even if, one can perform little, with endurance, knowledge and understanding, it can take him towards his desired goal.
Pratikrman is a process, which keeps one awake and aware constantly about the way of living life. By nature, the Jiv gets carried away on wrong path every single moment. Thus it is mentioned that every morning and evening one needs to find out some time, think and come back. If one can`t perform this activity every evening then he can try it every fifteenth day. By thinking and cogitating one can turn back as much as one can. Slowly it can be practised once every forth month. Eventually, at least once year, one should examine, whether he is on the wrong path or not. While the soul is making progress in the spiritual way (gun-sthanak); it initially thinks about this life and then about past lives and the one makes efforts to turn back thus reaching close to the final goal.