- About Parama Ekadashi
- Auspicious time of Parma Ekadashi
- Importance of Parama Ekadashi
- Significance of Parma Ekadashi
- Parma Ekadashi Puja Method
- Common Acts of Devotion on Ekadashi
- What are the foods forbidden on Ekadashi?
- Parama Ekadashi Story
- Parma Ekadashi fast brings relief from poverty
- Kuber got the fruit of this Ekadashi
- Different levels of observing Ekadashi
- How do we observe Ekadashi vrata?
- The purpose and benefits of Ekadashi
- Breaking an Ekadashi fast
- Sevas during Ekadashi Day
About Parama Ekadashi
The fast for Ekadashi is related to the three-day routine. Devotees do not take the evening meal after taking food in the afternoon a day before the fasting day, to ensure that there is no residual food left in the stomach the next day. Devotees strictly follow the rules of fasting on Ekadashi. And the next day ends the fast only after sunrise. Eating all types of grains is forbidden during Ekadashi fast.
[i]Those who do not keep Ekadashi fast for any reason, should not use rice in food on the day of Ekadashi and should avoid lies and blasphemy. The person who read Vishnusahsranam on Ekadashi, has special blessings of Bhagwan Vishnu.
[/i]The dates of Ekadashi fast may vary according to the different followers of the Vaishnav community.
Auspicious time of Parma Ekadashi
Ekadashi date of Shukla Paksha of Adhik month will start on August 11, 2023 at 05.06 am. Ekadashi Tithi will end on August 12, 2023 at 06.31 am. In such a situation, Parma Ekadashi fast will be observed on 12 August 2023, a Saturday. Also, the time for observing this fast will be from 05.49 am to 08.19 am on 13th August.
Importance of Parama Ekadashi
It is a strong belief that the observer of this vrat gets freedom from the cycle of rebirth and goes straight to ‘Vaikunth’ after death. Not only this, by the merits of the Parama Ekadashi fast, the deceased ancestors of the person will also attain peace.
Significance of Parma Ekadashi
According to mythology, when Lord Kuber observed this fast, Lord Shankar was pleased and made him the head of wealth. Not only this, by observing this fast, the truthful king Harishchandra got son, wife and kingdom. It is believed that gold donation, education donation, food donation, land donation and cow donation should be done for five days during this fast. By doing this, a person gets the blessings of Goddess Lakshmi and there is no dearth of money and grains.
According to the scriptures, the importance of charity on Parama Ekadashi is immense. On this day, if a person donates religious classification, grains, fruits, and sweets, then he gets auspicious results. Along with this, the virtue of fasting is also obtained. However, during this time it has to be kept in mind that when you are donating any religious book, donate it with faith in God and religious discourse. A person should donate according to his rating.
Parma Ekadashi Puja Method
The method of this Ekadashi fast is difficult. In this fast, fasting is observed from five days till Pancharatri. In which everything from nuclear energy to water is sacrificed. Only Bhagwat Charanamrit is taken. There is a great virtue and fruit of this Pancharatra. The worship method of the Parama Ekadashi fast is as follows:
On this morning, after taking Kaal Snan with Lord Vishnu, a resolution should be taken with water and fruits in hand. After this God should be worshipped.
Shri Vishnu Smaran Vrat should be followed till 5 days after this.
After giving food to the Dakshinayan Brahmin and sending him away along with donations and Dakshina, the fasting person should eat himself.
Common Acts of Devotion on Ekadashi
Fasting from grains and beans, as a way to cultivate self-control and spiritual focus
- Chanting the Hare Krishna mantra, especially during the evening and early morning hours
- Listening to or reading from the scriptures, such as the Bhagavad Gita and Srimad Bhagavatam
- Performing puja (worship) to Lord Krishna and his devotees
- Attending special kirtans (devotional singing) or lectures on the glories of Ekadashi and the importance of devotion to Lord Krishna
- Making special offerings or donations to the deity or to the temple or ashrama (community center)
- Participating in parikrama (circumambulation) of the deity or the holy places associated with Lord Krishna.
What are the foods forbidden on Ekadashi?
Food grains, cereals and beans (pulses) must be avoided.
- While spices can be used for cooking, mustard seeds should be avoided.
- You cannot use powdered asafoetida (hing), since it generally contains grains.
- As far as sesame seeds are concerned, they may be used only on Sat-tila Ekadashi.
- Take care not to use any cooking ingredients which may be mixed with grains. For example, avoid ghee which you have used to fry puris, and spices which you have touched with hands dusted with chapati flour.
- You cannot take even Vishnu-prasadam containing the above forbidden foods. But such prasadam may be kept to be honored the following day.
- You can consume the following food items – fruits, sabudana, makhana, milk and flours like singhare ka atta, kuttu ka atta, rajgira ka atta.
Parama Ekadashi Story
Shri Yudhishthirji said – Hey Janardan! Now you have come to know more about the names of Ekadashis of Krishna Paksha of the month and the method of their fasting. Shri Krishna said, O Rajan! The name of this Ekadashi is Param. By observing this fast, all sins in this world are destroyed and liberation is attained in the hereafter. While observing this fast in the aforesaid method, worship Nakshatra and Narottam God with incense, lamp, naivedya, flowers, etc. Let me tell you an interesting story of this ancient thing that happened to the sages in the city of Kampilya. You meditate on the unheard hearing. A Brahmin named Sumedha lived in Kampil Nagar. His wife named Pavitra was very chaste and virtuous. He was very poor because of some previous birth. He also had alms literature on Bhiksha Mitra. She was always useless about clothes. The husband’s service remains. She used to starve herself after eating the food of the guests and never asked for anything from her husband.
When Sumedha saw his wife very weak, he said – O dear! when I’m rich When I ask him for money, he does not give me anything. The household runs only with money, what should I do now? So if there is any opinion then I should step into the country. On this, his wife said humbly – Husband! Whatever good or bad the husband says, the wife should do the same. Those who donate knowledge and land in the previous birth are called education and land in this life. If a man does not donate, then God only gives him food. I can’t bear your separation. In the world of husband and wife, mother, father, brother, father-in-law, and relatives, etc. condemn, so you should stay in this place.
Once upon a time, Kaundin Muni came to that place. To see here the woman along with Sumedha prayed and said – We give thanks today. Today our life has become successful because of your darshan. They provided a place to sit and food. After the meal, Pavitra said, O Muni! You tell me the solution to destroy poverty. I bought my husband from the country in search of wealth. You have come by my luck. I say that now my poverty is soon destroyed. Basically, you tell me any fast which destroys our poverty. On this, Kaundinya Muni said that by fasting on the Parama Ekadashi of the Krishna Paksha of Malmas, all sins, sorrows and poverty, etc. are destroyed. The person who fasts becomes rich. In this fast one should keep awake the night by dancing and singing, by observing this fast Mahadev ji made Kuber rich. Truthful Harishchandra got the effect of this fast on his son, wife, and state. That Rishi Vidhi told all the things about Uttaratri Vrat. That monk again said that Brahminji! Pancharatri Fast is even better than this. On the day of Parama Ekadashi, early in the morning, after retiring from daily work, the Pancharatri fast should be started methodically. Those people who keep a waterless fast for five days , go to heaven along with their parents and wife. Those who eat for five days go to heaven. Those who bathe for five days and cook food for Brahmins, get the fruit of eating food in the whole world. The person who donates a horse in this fast gets the fruit of the donation of all three worlds. Those people who donate sesame seeds to the best Brahmins, go to Vishnu Lok equal to the number of sesame seeds.
Those who remain engrossed in celibacy for five days enjoy happiness in heaven with the gods and goddesses. Oh holy! Do this fast with your husband? They will get Sir Siddhi and in the end, they will go to heaven. According to Kaundinya Muni, he had observed a fast for five days. When the fast was over, she saw that the prince was in front of her. The prince created a perfect planet on which all things were punished to live. The prince went to his palace in a village. With the effect of this fast, both of them went to heaven after enjoying eternal happiness in this world. Shri Krishnaji said that O Rajan! the man who
By fasting on Parama Ekadashi, one gets the fruits of all pilgrimages, donations, etc. Just as in the world, the Brahmin is the best among the two shifts, the cow is the best among the four shifts, and Indraraj is the best among the gods, in the same way, among the months, the month of Adhik (Laund) is the best. In this month, there is a lot of virtue of Panch Ratri. Padmini and Parama Lakshmi are also best in this month. By fasting all the sins become Krishna. A weak person must fast. The person who does not observe bath and Ekadashi fast for a long time commits the sin of suicide. This human vagina is full of great virtues. That’s why man must do Brahmand Vrat.
Hey! That’s what you asked me. I told you now you are its fasting devotional unbeliever. Those who fast on Parama Ekadashi of Adhik Maas enjoy the same happiness in heaven as Lord Indra and are worshiped in all three worlds.
Parma Ekadashi fast brings relief from poverty
One day saddened by poverty, Sumedha told his wife about the idea of going abroad, then she said, “Swami, wealth and children are obtained only by the charity of the previous birth, so don’t worry about it.” Those who are in luck will get it here. Following the advice of his wife, the Brahmin did not go abroad. This is how time kept passing. Once again Kaundinya Rishi came there. The Brahmin couple served them with a very happy heart.
Kuber got the fruit of this Ekadashi
The couple learned the solution to remove poverty from Maharishi. After that Maharishi said that fasting on Parama Ekadashi of Malmas destroys sorrow, poverty and sinful deeds. In this fast, there should be night vigil along with dance, singing etc. By fasting on this Ekadashi, Yaksharaj Kuber became wealthy and Harishchandra became king. Rishi said that from the day of Parama Ekadashi, one who observes waterless fast till Pancharatri i.e. five days and nights, never faces financial crisis.
After this Sumedha fasted on Parma Ekadashi along with his wife and one day in the morning suddenly a prince came there from somewhere and endowed Sumedha with money, food and all means. By observing this fast, the happy days of the Brahmin couple started.
Different levels of observing Ekadashi
Ekadashi may be observed in different levels as given below and one may choose a particular level of fasting depending on one’s age, health and various other factors pertaining to one’s lifestyle.
- The real way to observe, is to fast completely without even taking water. This is called nirjala fast.
- If you cannot observe a nirjala fast, you can take just water.
- If you cannot do that, you can also take a little fruit and milk.
- The next option is that you can also take other non-grain foods like vegetables (except onion and garlic), roots, nuts, etc., only once during the fast.
- The last option is to take the above items three times like on a regular day.
How do we observe Ekadashi vrata?
We observe Ekadashi vrata from sunrise to sunrise.
During this day, try to engage your time in spiritual activities such as –
- Remembering the pastimes of Lord Krishna or His different incarnations.
- Chanting Hare Krishna maha-mantra as many times as possible.
- Reading scriptures like Bhagavad-gita and Srimad-Bhagavatam.
- Visiting a temple of Lord Vishnu/Krishna.
The purpose and benefits of Ekadashi
Fasting is meant for reducing the fat within the body which otherwise induces more sleep, inactiveness and laziness.
- On Ekadashi, more time can be utilized for spiritual activity. In this way, one can achieve both external and internal purity.
- The real purpose of fasting is to increase one’s faith and love for Krishna. By observing a fast, we can minimize the bodily demands and engage our time in the service of the Lord by chanting the Hare Krishna mantra or performing similar service.
- Observing Ekadashi vrata pleases the Supreme Personality of Godhead and by its regular observance, one makes advancement in Krishna consciousness.
- In the Brahma-vaivarta Purana it is said that one who observes fasting on Ekadashi day is freed from all kinds of reactions to sinful activities and advances in pious life.
- Padma Purana states that one should follow Ekadashi especially since even if one by trickery follows Ekadashi, all of his sins are absolved and he very easily attains the supreme goal, the abode of Vaikuntha.
Breaking an Ekadashi fast
Fast must be broken next day after the sunrise.
- If you have not observed a nirjala fast (a complete fast without even water), it should be broken by taking grains.
- In the case of a nirjala fast, you can break it with even non-grain items like milk or fruits.
Sevas during Ekadashi Day
Ekadashi is a sacred and spiritual day, and any good deeds or donations made on this day are greatly multiplied in their benefits.
In this fast, fasting is observed from five days till Pancharatri. Devotees worship Lord Vishnu with full devotion. After this, Brahmins are fed and donations are made. It is said that whoever fasts and worships on this day, all his troubles go away. Lord Shiva is also worshiped along with Lord Vishnu on this day.