Prabodhini Ekadashi 2017: Date, Puja Vidhi Timing And Fasting Rules
Prabodhini Ekadashi (October 31, 2017 Tuesday) celebrates the end of four months of Chaturmas. It is also known as Devotthan Ekadashi. It is the eleventh lunar day in the bright fortnight (Shukla Paksha) of the Hindu month of Kartik (Nov-Dec). Chaturrmas is the time when Lord Vishnu goes into yoga nindra (slumber). The Vedas inform that Lord Vishnu rests on Shayani Ekadashi (‘Shayan’ means ‘sleep) and wakes on Prabodhini Ekadashi. ‘Prabodhini’ means ‘Awakened’, thus giving this Ekadashi the title "Prabodhini Ekadashi" meaning "awakening eleventh".
Generally weddings as per scriptures are not allowed during Chaturmas when the Lord sleeps. The beginning of Prabodhini Ekadashi marking the end of Chaturmas signifies the auspicious period for weddings as the Lord wakes up from His mysterious yoga nindra. This period is also called as Kartiki Ekadashi, Kartik Shukla ekadashi and Kartiki.
Prabodhini Ekadashi also celebrates the start of sugarcane harvest. The farming communities across the country perform a special puja in the field and ritually cutting some sugarcane steaks with some spread at the boundary of the field. After this ritual, they donate five canes to a Brahmin, blacksmith, a carpenter, a washer-man and take home five of them. Farmers make the beautiful figures of Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi on a wooden-board with cow dung and butter.
Then they tie sugarcane together at the top and placed round the board. Some cotton, betel nut, lentils and sweets are offered along with a yagna (fire sacrifice). Later on they break the sugar canes and hang them on the roof till Holi. During Holi, all the canes are burnt.
How to celebrate Prabodhini Ekadashi: How to celebrate? What to do on this day?
On this day people get up early in the morning and observe fast throughout the day. Those who are married can observe fast on first day only (October 31) and those who are sanyasis (renunciates), staunch devotees and widows may observe fast on both days (Oct. 31 and Nov. 1).
One can also perform the marriage ritual of Tulsi plant with Shaligram stone that represents Lord Vishnu. It is said that Lord Vishnu married Tulsi on this day.
You may visit a Vishnu/Krishna temple and offer prayers. If a temple is not around, you can worship Him at your home in the early morning. The idols of Lord Vishnu should be worshipped with sandalwood, flowers, fruits and dhoop.
One can simply meditate on Lord Vishnu and chant His mantra: ‘Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya’. This powerful mantra was given by Sage Narada to Dhruva Maharaja as described in the Bhagavat Purana (4.8.54).
You can also chant the Hare Krishna Maha-Mantra on the Tulasi bead.
You can offer flowers and chant Vishnu Sahasranamam (Thousands name of Lord Vishnu). Chanting thousand names of Vishnu or Vishnu Strotram has a purifying effect on the mind and the body. You can also play it in the morning while you engage in daily works. More details here.
You can also perform a Vishnu Sahasranama Puja under qualified Brahmins. It is a highly recommended activity on this day. The puja includes Vishnu- Lakshmi Abhishek and Pujan, Vishnu mantra Japa- 1100 times, Vishnu Sahasranama Strotra followed by Homa and Aarti.
You can wear a Ten Mukhi and a Nineteen MukhiRudraksha beads for they are ruled by Lord Krishna and Narayana, respectively. Wearing these Rudraksha beads on this day purifies your inner self and strengthens your will power. They work like a shield on one's body and the wearer gets immense protection from negative energies, evil eye and psychic attacks.
Donate clothes, food grains, umbrellas, hand-fans, pitchers filled with water and any other items to Brahmins.