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» Informational Articles » Festivals » Varuthini Ekadashi

Meaning of Ekadashi

Ekadashi is a fast observed by devotees on the eleventh day of each lunar cycle, as per Hinduism. The two Lunar cycles are the waxing Moon phase or fortnight, called Shukla Paksha and the waning Moon phase, termed Krishna Paksha. So, the Ekadashi comes twice in a month, once in each Moon phase. Jainism also considers the Ekadashi days holy and spiritual.

Ekadashi is observed in honour of Lord Hari, one of the Gods of the Divine Trinity of Brahma, Vishnu, Mahesh. Observing fast on Ekadashis is said to please Sri Hari and brings benevolent blessings to the devotee who observes the fast. So powerful is Ekadashi, that it is said that merely hearing the names of the 24 Ekadashis can absolve the sins of a person. The ancient scriptures mention that everyone between the age of 8 to 80 should observe Ekadashi fast with sincerity.

About Varuthini Ekadasi

The Varuthini Ekadasi is observed in the Krishna Paksha or waning Moon phase in the Hindu month of Vaisakha, which as per the Gregorian calendar is in the month of April-May.

ekadashi-vrat-katha Varuthini Ekadasi 2021 Dates, Tithi

Varuthini Ekadasi 2021 is on May 7, Friday.
Ekadashi Tithi Begins - 02:10 PM on May 06, 2021
Ekadashi Tithi Ends - 03:32 PM on May 07, 2021
On 8th May, Parana Time - 06:07 AM to 08:42 AM

Those who observe the fast must break it after sunrise the next day of Ekadashi. It is to be noted that one should break the fast (Parana) within Dwadashi Tithi. Dwadashi ends at 5:20 PM on 8th May. Another important consideration is that one must not break the fast during Hari Vasara which is the fourth duration of Dwadashi. The best time to break the fast is pratahkala (morning).
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Significance of Varuthini Ekadashi

The importance of Varuthini Ekadasi has been explained by Lord Krishna to King Yudhishtira and is from the Bhavishya Purana.Anyone who is aware of and fears the results of the accumulation of sins he has committed and is fearful of death gains from observing Varuthini Ekadasi.

By observing fast on Varuthini Ekadasi, by dedicatedly sticking to the rules a devotee can be blessed with the merits which are the same as that of a person who performs austerities and penances for many thousands of years or gives gold as a donation on a Solar Eclipse. Fasting on Varuthini Ekadasi is so auspicious and powerful that it helps the devotee to achieve his goals, not only in this lifetime but in a subsequent lifetime too. In comparison to the charity of Horses and Elephants, giving charity of food grains in honour of forefathers and DemiGods (Devas) is considered much more superior as it helps to nourish human beings. Also doing Kanyadaan or getting a young girl married to a suitable, eligible man or imparting spiritual knowledge to the ones who are not aware of it is considered high on merits. But, the most superior in merit is gained in observing fast on Varuthini Ekadasi. The king Madhata was liberated of sins too.

Lord Sri Krishna further adds that every man should be cautious of not living off his daughter’s money as that is a deplorable sin and the person goes through the worst of conditions and situations. Also if any man tries to be greedy and sell his daughter for money or takes money from the man that he has got his daughter married to results in the man being reborn as a cat.

Giving gifts of rich ornaments, jewellery and money while getting his daughter married to a suitable man is considered sacred and helps to garner many merits but fasting on Varuthini Ekadasi surpasses all these donations to give the best of merits to the devotee.

And like all other Ekadasis worshipping Lord Janardan (Lord Vishnu or Krishna) and singing His praise through the night on Varuthini Ekadasi helps to attain liberation and a place in the Heavenly Abode of Lord Vishnu, at His Lotus feet.

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What to do on Varuthini Ekadasi

The rituals of Varuthini Ekadasi are to be followed with dedication.

1) One day before Varuthini Ekadashi, which is the 10th day of the Krishna Paksha, the person should clean his/her teeth thoroughly in the afternoon and have supper at Sunset hour.
2) On the morning of Varuthini Ekadashi, the person should intend on keeping the fast meticulously. The person should have a bath in a river (which is said to be most purifying) or a lake and in both not being available, bathe with pond water.
3) While bathing the person should smear mud on his/her body with chanting a prayer to Mother Earth.
The prayer - O Asvakrante! O Rathakrante! O Vishnukrante! O Vasundhare! O Mrttike!
(O Mother Earth! please remove all my sins accumulated from past lives so that I may enter the abode of the Lord Vishnu the Supreme Lord) 4) Worship Lord Govinda with complete dedication and Offer an excellent 'Bhog' (food to Divine) along with flowers and other things of the offering.
5) Light a lamp at home in honour of the Lord
6) Chant or sing praises of Lord Vishnu throughout the day and remain in a most blissful state during the fast.
7) Stay awake through the night in full consciousness. If possible play musical instruments throughout the night to please the Lord.
8) The next morning the person should give charity to Brahmanas and respectfully ask them for forgiveness for any offence.
9) For people who keep a complete fast till the next day, one should say the prayer -
"O Pundarikaksha, O lotus-eyed Lord, now I will eat. Please shelter me".
10) After the prayer the devotee should offer flowers and water at the lotus feet of Lord Vishnu and request the Lord to eat by chanting the mantra of eight-syllable, thrice. To garner the full merits of the fast, the devotee should have water which has been offered to the Lord.
11) Fire sacrifices can be performed if the devotee chooses to do so

The day of Ekadashi till the next morning the devotee should involve in taking baths, singing and chanting praises of the Lord and worship Him with complete devotion, involve in activities of devotion and doing charity.

Fasting Rules

Devotees who observe fast on Varuthini Ekadasi needs to refrain from certain things from the day before this Ekadasi, which effectively means on the day of Dashami, which are:

1) Do not eat on Bell-metal plates
2) Food items like Red lentils, Urad-dal, Chickpeas, spinach, Kondo is prohibited
3) Eat one meal on Dashami
4) Don't chew/eat Betel Nut or Betel Leaf
5) Sleeping during the day, indulging in fault finding, sports, gossip
The other rules of Ekadasi also need to be followed.

As per specifications in the ancient texts, to get the benefits of the fasting on Ekadashi the person should adhere to the rules strictly.

  • The devotee observing fast should have a bath on the morning of Varuthini Ekadashi.
  • Beans and grains are prohibited to eat on Ekadashi.
  • The killing of any animal is prohibited on this day for the devotee.
  • Sleeping during the day is not allowed on Ekadashi and the next day that is on Dvadashi.
  • The devotee keeping fast should not meet or interact with any cheats, frauds or people involved in any nefarious activity. The scriptures even say that if by chance the devotee comes into proximity of such a person then one should purify by standing under the sun and looking directly at it.
  • Abstinence from sex on Ekadashi and Dwadashi.
  • On Dwadashi (the day after Ekadashi), devotees are not to eat in another person's house, have only one meal, Honey and Urad-dal (black lentil) is not to be consumed, eating on Bell-metal plate or cutlery, and should not massage oil on the body.
  • As per the ancient text, if the devotee has to speak to a person from the lower caste, then he/she will have to purify himself by eating Tulsi leaves or an Amalaki fruit.
  • If due to any reason the devotee is not able to break the fast on the next day, then he/she should have water to signify the completion of the fast and later have food when convenient.
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