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ggmoorthyiyer
22-04-2017, 06:03 PM
Meaning of Ekadasi:

Every month of the Hindu calendar has two auspicious days of Ekadasi.
It falls on the eleventh day of the fortnight of the lunar cycle.
The first Ekadasi occurs when the moon is closest to the earth and
the second Ekadasi occurs when the moon is farthest from the earth.
The Ekadasi days are also indicators of the high and low tides of the sea.
There are 24 Ekadasis in a year and each Ekadasi has a unique name.
Ekadasi is observed as a day of fasting and devotion.

Benefits of Ekadasi fasting:


• It brings the blessings of Lord Vishnu.
• It liberates one from the cycle of birth and death.
• It gives one freedom from the sins of the past.
• It fulfills the wishes of health, wealth and happiness.
• It enhances the physiological functions of the body.
• It helps in flushing out the toxins from the body.
• It helps to strengthen one’s self-control.
• It improves one’s emotional stability.

Methods of Ekadasi Fasting:
• Complete fasting involves total abstinence from food and
water for 24 hours.
• Partial fasting involves consumption of fruits and milk and
the avoidance of rice and grains.
• People with health problems can opt for partial fasting after
consulting with their doctors.
• Some people take only a single meal on the Dasami day,
the day before Ekadasi.

The 24 different Ekadasis

Mythological Significance of Ekadasi:

It is believed that Ekadasi is the name of the Goddess that arose from
Lord Vishnu to defeat Demon Mura. Happy with her divine act,
Lord Vishnu blessed her that anyone who observes Ekadasi fast
will be freed of their sins and will attain Moksha.

The 24 different Ekadasis:

1. Putrada Ekadasi:
There is a popular belief that married couples without children
will be blessed with children if they observe Putrada Ekadasi.

2. Shatilla Ekadasi:
On this day, Til (sesame) is used in six ways. It is used in Ubtan,
bathing, performing Havans, Tarpan, meal and donations.


3. Jaya Ekadasi:
The greatness of this Ekadasi was narrated to Yudhishtira by
Sri Krishna and is found in the Padma Purana and the Bhavisyothara
Purana.


4. Vijaya Ekadasi:
The major belief behind practicing this ritual is the observance
of a vrat by Lord Ram before he headed towards crossing the ocean
to reach Lanka and defeating Ravana.


5. Amalki Ekadasi:
Dedicated to Amlaki or Gooseberry Tree, observance of this Ekadasi
is believed to bring in great prosperity and benefits.


6. Papamochini Ekadasi:
Observing a vrat on this day is highly significant as a sincere devotee
can get rid of all his sins committed so far.


7. Kamda Ekadasi:
A fast on this day will assist in getting rid of all sins and
guilt that are a result of lust.


8. Varuthini Ekadasi:
The vrat is a step towards a fortunate phase of life.


9. Mohini Ekadasi:
Eliminates all sins and helps in leading a happy and prosperous life.
Also, a person undergoing sadness is effectively able to overcome
this sickness.


10. Apara Ekadasi:
This vrat would help in eliminating their sins and henceforth,
would finally assist them in attaining Moksha, or salvation.


11. Nirjala Ekadasi:
It is the strictest fast among all the Ekadashis in the Hindu religion
as one cannot even drink water while observing it.


12. Yogini Ekadasi:
It is the most significant Ekadashi fast in order to get rid of
various ailments and diseases.


13. Devshayani Ekadasi:
It is believed that Lord Vishnu went into a deep sleep for
the next four months beginning from this day.


14. Kamika Ekadasi:
This vrat is considered highly significant and auspicious for
performing good deeds and seeking blessings of the Lord.


15. Aja Ekadasi: This vrat eradicates all sinful and evil activities.


16. Parivartan Ekadasi:
On this Ekadasi day Lord Vishnu who reclines on Aadishesha
turns to another side and this turn is called as Parivarthan.


17. Indira Ekadasi:
It is believed that observing this Ekadasi will help in removing
the sins committed by oneself and one’s forefathers.


18. Pasankusa Ekadasi:
One will be able to fulfill his dreams and observing it is equal
to performing numerous yajnas and making several offerings.


19. Rama Ekadasi: Sins and evil deeds can be washed away
by observing a vrat on this day.


20. Prabhodini Ekadasi: The Hindu devotees believe that
Lord Vishnu woke up from his Yoga Nidra (cosmic sleep) on this day.


21. Utpanna Ekadasi: One can enjoy all kinds of comforts and
gets the shelter of Lord Vishnu, after death.


22. Mokshada Ekadasi: helps in attaining Moksha, or liberation.


23. Saphala Ekadasi:
Sins of many generations of a person are removed by observing
the fast of Saphala Ekadasi.


24. Haribobhini (Devotthani) Ekadasi.

Thanks to Sri. K.Raman.

kgopalan37
18-09-2017, 04:48 AM
The following informs us as to why we need to avoid grains on Ekadashi days.




It is stated in the Padma Purana:


bhuyo-bhuyo drdha vani sryatam syata janah
na bhoktavyam na bhoktavyam na bhoktavyam harer dine


“O human beings, please listen, I tell you repeatedly with steadfast determination, please never eat any grains on the Day of Lord Hari (Ekadasi day, the Lord’s appearance day like Janmastami day etc.). Please never eat any food grains even by mistake on the Day of Lord

Hari. Please do not eat grains on the Day of Lord Hari even if forced or compelled to do so.”





The reason to not eat food grains on Ekadasi is stated in the Vrihan Naradiya Purana thus:


yani kani ca papani brahma hatyadikani ca
annam asritya tiathanti samprapte hari vasare


“Every type of sin in this world, including the grievous sin of killing a Brahmana, reside in food grains on the Day of Lord Hari (Ekadasi and other fasting days). If grains are eaten on fasting days sins enter the body of that human being.”


The Hari Bhakti Vilasa states:


brahmacari grhastho va vanaprastho ‘thava yatih
ekadasyam hi bhunjano bhukte go-mamsam eva hi


“Whether a person is Brahmachari (unmarried celibate student), Grihastha (householder), Vanaprasthi (retired, elderly), Sanyasi (renounced person) or any other social order, if they eat food grains on Ekadasi, they acquire the same sin as that received by eating cow’s meat.”


The Skanda Purana also states:


matr ha pitr has caiva bhratr ha guru has tatha
ekadasyas tu ya bhunkte visnu-lokac cyuto bhavet


“Those who eat grains on Ekadasi and on the Day of Lord Hari (including Janmastami, Gaura Purnima etc.) obtain the sin equal to killing one’s own mother, own father, own brother and own Guru; and they cannot reach the spiritual world, which is why one should never eat grains on fasting days.”


One may think or say that fasting on Ekadasi days and the Lord’s appearance days are meant only for Vaisnava devotees and not for worshippers of Lord Siva or Durga etc. But the Padma Purana informs such people:


na saiva na ca saurohasaun na sakta gana sevakah
yo bhunkte vasare visnor jneyah pasvadiko hi sah


“Whether one is a follower of Lord Siva, the goddess Durga, Kali, Surya (sungod), Ganesa, Bhairava or any other demigod, they should

avoid eating grains on the fasting days of Lord Hari (Ekadasis and other fasting days of Lord Hari). If one does not rigidly follow this rule and eats grains on fasting days they are considered worse than an animal.”


The Brihan Naradiya Purana states:


brahma-hatyadi papanam kathancin niskrtir bhavet
ekadasyat tu yo bhunkte niskrtir nasti kutracit


“By rigidly following religious and ritualistic processes one may become free from grievous sin like killing a Brahmana, but it is impossible to eliminate the sins of those who eat grains on Ekadasi days.”


It is written in the Skanda Purana that Lord Yamaraja (superintendent of hell) told his messengers not even to go near the immediate three

generations of those who fast on Ekadasi days, even if they are lowborn and full of sin. But even if a pious person is learned in the four

Vedas and performs rituals and is pure, but eats grains on Ekadasi days, they must be taken to hell to suffer. (The correct Ekadasi days are

calculated each year and printed as a calendar and can be gotten upon request). If grain filled prasadam is given to a person on a fasting day it should be kept for consumption on the next day, but should not be consumed on the fasting day. Only fruits, roots (such as potatoes,

sweet potatoes, tapioca, sago etc.) water, milk products, nuts, rock salt, Singhara flour, Kutu flower, Sama Rice (found in the Indian grocery

stores) and prescribed medicines can be consumed on fasting days. Fasting on Ekadasis began in Satyayuga and everyone followed fasting

rules then.

- - - Updated - - -

The following informs us as to why we need to avoid grains on Ekadashi days.




It is stated in the Padma Purana:


bhuyo-bhuyo drdha vani sryatam syata janah
na bhoktavyam na bhoktavyam na bhoktavyam harer dine


“O human beings, please listen, I tell you repeatedly with steadfast determination, please never eat any grains on the Day of Lord Hari (Ekadasi day, the Lord’s appearance day like Janmastami day etc.). Please never eat any food grains even by mistake on the Day of Lord

Hari. Please do not eat grains on the Day of Lord Hari even if forced or compelled to do so.”





The reason to not eat food grains on Ekadasi is stated in the Vrihan Naradiya Purana thus:


yani kani ca papani brahma hatyadikani ca
annam asritya tiathanti samprapte hari vasare


“Every type of sin in this world, including the grievous sin of killing a Brahmana, reside in food grains on the Day of Lord Hari (Ekadasi and other fasting days). If grains are eaten on fasting days sins enter the body of that human being.”


The Hari Bhakti Vilasa states:


brahmacari grhastho va vanaprastho ‘thava yatih
ekadasyam hi bhunjano bhukte go-mamsam eva hi


“Whether a person is Brahmachari (unmarried celibate student), Grihastha (householder), Vanaprasthi (retired, elderly), Sanyasi (renounced person) or any other social order, if they eat food grains on Ekadasi, they acquire the same sin as that received by eating cow’s meat.”


The Skanda Purana also states:


matr ha pitr has caiva bhratr ha guru has tatha
ekadasyas tu ya bhunkte visnu-lokac cyuto bhavet


“Those who eat grains on Ekadasi and on the Day of Lord Hari (including Janmastami, Gaura Purnima etc.) obtain the sin equal to killing one’s own mother, own father, own brother and own Guru; and they cannot reach the spiritual world, which is why one should never eat grains on fasting days.”


One may think or say that fasting on Ekadasi days and the Lord’s appearance days are meant only for Vaisnava devotees and not for worshippers of Lord Siva or Durga etc. But the Padma Purana informs such people:


na saiva na ca saurohasaun na sakta gana sevakah
yo bhunkte vasare visnor jneyah pasvadiko hi sah


“Whether one is a follower of Lord Siva, the goddess Durga, Kali, Surya (sungod), Ganesa, Bhairava or any other demigod, they should

avoid eating grains on the fasting days of Lord Hari (Ekadasis and other fasting days of Lord Hari). If one does not rigidly follow this rule and eats grains on fasting days they are considered worse than an animal.”


The Brihan Naradiya Purana states:


brahma-hatyadi papanam kathancin niskrtir bhavet
ekadasyat tu yo bhunkte niskrtir nasti kutracit


“By rigidly following religious and ritualistic processes one may become free from grievous sin like killing a Brahmana, but it is impossible to eliminate the sins of those who eat grains on Ekadasi days.”


It is written in the Skanda Purana that Lord Yamaraja (superintendent of hell) told his messengers not even to go near the immediate three

generations of those who fast on Ekadasi days, even if they are lowborn and full of sin. But even if a pious person is learned in the four

Vedas and performs rituals and is pure, but eats grains on Ekadasi days, they must be taken to hell to suffer. (The correct Ekadasi days are

calculated each year and printed as a calendar and can be gotten upon request). If grain filled prasadam is given to a person on a fasting day it should be kept for consumption on the next day, but should not be consumed on the fasting day. Only fruits, roots (such as potatoes,

sweet potatoes, tapioca, sago etc.) water, milk products, nuts, rock salt, Singhara flour, Kutu flower, Sama Rice (found in the Indian grocery

stores) and prescribed medicines can be consumed on fasting days. Fasting on Ekadasis began in Satyayuga and everyone followed fasting

rules then.