Ekadashi is observed on the 11th lunar day of the lunar cycle of a Hindu calendar month. It is a day of lord Hari. On this day, devotees keep fast to please lord Hari.
“The real reason for observing fasting on Ekadashi is to minimise the demands of the body and to engage our time in the service of the Lord by chanting or performing similar service.”
-Nectar of Devotion 7
Ekadashi’s name was given to a goddess who was one of the creations of lord Vishnu.
According to ancient tales, the demon Mura was delivered by the goddess Ekadashi. Lord Vishnu was so pleased by this act and endowed goddess Ekadashi that if a person observes the fast of Ekadashi then he will be able to free himself from all kinds of sins and impurities and will surely get moksha which is one of the Ekadashi fast benefits. This makes Ekadashi, a very special and prominent fast.
This Year, Dev uthani Ekadashi falls on 23rd November 2023.
Dev uthani Ekadashi also known as Prabhodhini Ekadashi, Devotthani Ekadashi, Utthana Ekadashi, and Haribodhini Ekadashi. It is the second Ekadashi in the month of Kartik.
Lord Brahma has spoken in Hari Bhakti Vilasa 16/289 (SKANDA PURANA)-
Prabodhinim Uposya Eva Na Garbhe Visate Narah Sarva Dharman Parityajya Tasmat Kurvita Narada
“Oh Narada Muni, one who fasts on Prabodhini (when the Lord gets up) Ekadashi, does not enter again into the womb of another mother”.
Therefore, a person should give up all varieties of occupation and fast on this day of Dev uthani Ekadashi 2023.
There is a conversation between Naradmuni, and lord Brahma, found in Skanda Purana where lord Brahma narrated the glories of utthana Ekadashi.
Lord Brahma while narrating glories of Dev uthani Ekadashi or Haribodhini Ekadashi to his son Naradmuni, described to him how this Ekadashi eradicates all kinds of sins and provide great merit, and liberation to those who fast with all devotion on this day and surrender themselves unto the lotus feet of lord Hari.
Furthermore, Lord Brahma spoke about how this day is more powerful in nullifying sins and benefited from performing one thousand Asvamedha and One Hundred Rajasuya sacrifices.
When Narada Muni asked his father Lord Brahma to describe to him the benefits of fasting on Ekadashi, by eating once at midday and keeping fast without grains
Then lord Brahma replied –
“If a person eats once at midday on Ekadashi, the sins of his last birth are erased, if he eats the only supper, the sins acquired during his previous two births are erased, and if he fasts completely, the sins accumulated during his previous seven births are eradicated. The sins a person has accumulated over a thousand previous births are burned to ashes if he not only fasts but also remains awake throughout the whole Ekadashi night.”
Anything unachievable in all three worlds can be achieved just by strictly fasting on this Ekadashi.
Simply observing fasting on Dev uthani Ekadashi one’s sin equal to Mount Sumeru in volume becomes zero.
When one strictly observes this Dev uthani Ekadashi fasting then one’s forefathers suffer in hell, they attain beautifully ornamented spiritual bodies and are shifted to lord Vishnu’s abode.
Also whoever chants, reads, or listens to the glories of Sri Hari on Dev Uthani Ekadashi, gets benefits equally of donating hundreds of cows to Brahmana.
Lord Brahma has described this Ekadashi as even more potent in removing sins than bathing in the river Ganga.
One who chants the glories of lord Hari on Ekadashi gets merit earned by donating seven islands.
These are the glories of Dev uthani Ekadashi as written in Skanda Purana.
Naradmuni asked lord Brahma to describe to him how one should observe this most sacred Ekadashi and then lord Brahma replied, one should –
There is a famous story about a female mouse in Padma Purana, Kartik Mahatmya.
In a temple of lord Vishnu lived one female mouse and she used to eat ghee from extinguished ghee lamps, which devotees used to offer to lord Vishnu. One day she was very hungry, she tried eating ghee from the lamp which was not yet extinguished. While eating ghee, the burning cotton wick got stuck in her teeth. She started jumping in front of the deity. And died due to fire. Lord Vishnu being so merciful accepted the jumping of a mouse with a fire as aarti and gave her liberation the topmost destination.
This story of a mouse from Padma Purana signifies the importance of offering a ghee lamp to Lord Hari.
One should remain awake throughout the night of Ekadashi and should sing the glories and pastimes of lord Krishna.
(Glories of Remaining Awake on the night of Dev uthani Ekadashi 2023: -Padma Purana and Kartika Mahatmya
The sins of a person who remains awake on the night of Dev uthani Ekadashi 2023 burn like a mass of cotton.
Even if one is guilty of the most odious sins such as killing a brahmana even that person can shake his sins away by remaining awake on the night of Dev uthani Ekadashi 2023)
One should visit nearby Iskcon temple to attend mangal aarti, the whole morning program (Click here to know the day schedule of Iskcon temple), take darshan of RadhaKrishna, listen to the glory of Ekadashi and pastimes of Lord Krishna and also participate in kirtans. So that one can get all the benefits of Ekadashi fast.
Ekadashi fasting ends on Dwadashi( the next day of Ekadashi) by taking grains Prasadam. Paran must be performed at the specific time calculated separately for each Dwadashi. The calculation may vary as different sampradaya calculate timings of Ekadashi differently. One should follow the Vaishnava calendar provided by Iskcon for the timings and dates of Ekadashi.
Break the fast between 06:50 AM to 10:21 AM.
The Skandh Purāṇ states:
nyāyopārjita vittasya daśhamānśhena dhīmataḥ
kartavyo viniyogaśhcha īśhvaraprityarthameva cha [v7]
“From the wealth you have earned by rightful means, take out one-tenth, and as a matter of duty, give it away in charity. Dedicate your charity for the pleasure of God.” Charity is classified as proper or improper, superior or inferior, according to the factors mentioned by Shree Krishna in this verse. When offered freely from the heart to worthy recipients, at the proper time, and at the appropriate place, it is bequeathed to be in the mode of goodness.
Performing an act of charity to please Sri Krishna on Ekadashi gives more benefit. This Ekadashi donates or performs an act of charity in your or your family’s name.
On this Dev uthani Ekadashi, make a donation for Sadhu Bhojan Seva for the pleasure of Lord Krishna. Sadhus are responsible for the welfare and providing spiritual education to society. In Iskcon temple, Brahmacharis are full-time dedicated to the service of the lord. They always engage in preaching the teachings of the Bhagavad Gita. On this Ekadashi, serve Iskcon’s monks by giving a donation of food and get the blessing of Shri Shri Radha Madan Mohan.
“While Kṛṣṇa was going to the fruit vendor very hastily, most of the grains He was holding fell. Nonetheless, the fruit vendor filled Kṛṣṇa’s hands with fruits, and her fruit basket was immediately filled with jewels and gold.”
Chant more and more rounds of hare Krishna maha-mantra on this very auspicious Dev Uthani Ekadashi. It is said that chanting and glorifying Shri Krishna on the day of Ekadashi gives a thousand times more benefit.
Chant the holy name of the lord Krishna-
“Hare Krishna Hare Krishna
Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama
Rama Rama Hare Hare”
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