Prabodhini Ekadashi, also known as Dev Uthani Ekadashi or Utthana Ekadashi, is celebrated in the Kartik period during the full phase of the moon (Oct – Nov). The Skanda Purana contains a divine discussion in which Lord Brahma informs Sage Narada of the significance of Utthana Ekadashi or Dev Prabodhini Ekadashi. An auspicious Vrat devoted to Lord Vishnu is Utthana Ekadashi.
The following day of Utthana Ekadashi is when the well-known Tulsi Vivah festival is celebrated. According to legend, Lord Vishnu awakens from the Yoganidra on this auspicious day. Uttana Ekadashi therefore signifies the end of Chaturmas “Vrat.” On this Ekadashi, Tulsi Damodar Vivah is also done. With this Ekadashi, the Chatur Mas era likewise comes to an end. On this day, the well-known Kartik Month Pandarpur Yatra also comes to an end. On the day of Ekadashi fasting, all customary guidelines are followed.
There is a strong belief that by celebrating this Ekadashi, all past-life sins are forgiven, and the witness receives the road to emancipation (Moksha).
Lord Vishnu followers see Utthana Ekadashi, which comes in the Kartik month, as being extremely fortunate. Dedicated followers of Vishnu conduct a strict fast on that day by forgoing meals and sleeping through the night. The majority of people eat one meal, typically in the evening, and then go Lord Vishnu’s holy sites and other shrines.
Devotees also observe Bhishma Panchaka Vrata, also known as Bhishma Panchakam, on the day of Utthana Ekadashi. On this Ekadashi, Tulsi Damodar Vivah is also practised in various sects. The Pandharpur Kartik Palki Yatra occurs on this day. The other two primary rituals performed at Utthana Ekadashi are the Kartika Purana parayana and the Vishnu Sahasranama parayana. The day after Ekadashi Upava, known as Ksheerabdi Dwadashi, is when devotees break their upavas.
It is said to be particularly beneficial for devotees to fast on Ekadashi and recite Vishnu prayers such Om Namo Narayana, Vishnu Sahasranamam, and Venkateswara Suprabhatam.
“O Dear Son, O Devarshi, I will describe to you the importance of the Utthana or Prabhodhini Ekadashi, which gives great merits and finally the “Moksha,” Lord Brahma said to Narad Muni. This Ekadashi, which happens during the light fortnight of the period of Kartika, is significantly more cleansing than a bath in the sea or a holy place.
Lord Brahma added, “If an individual consumes once at midday on Ekadashi, the mistakes of his earlier existence are wiped away; if he eats dinner, the sins accrued during his past 2 births are forgiven; and if he totally fasts, the sins accrued during his past seven lives are wiped out.
If the devotee keeps awake during Ekadashi night in addition to the fasting Vrat, the sins accrued over a thousand previous births are entirely erased. Even if one’s ancestors committed several sins and are currently tormented in hell, they still obtain exquisitely embellished spiritual bodies and joyfully enter Vishnu’s abode.
One who does not recite the Gayatri mantra 3 times per day, ignores fast days, denies the existence of God, criticizes the Vedic Scriptures, believes that those who adhere to their precepts will only experience ruin, is cruel and wicked, ungrateful, or deceives others cannot ever engage in any religious activity successfully.
Brahma continued, “People of bad character destroy their merits, and anyone who connects with sinners and pays them a visit without a religious intention will go straight to Lord Yamaraj’s residence, the overseer of death. And if someone eats in such a home, they forfeit all merit they have gained as well as their happiness, fame, longevity, and ability to raise happy children.
A person who fasts on this Ekadashi will at once attract all places of pilgrimage from the three planets to their home. Since anyone who fasts on this Ekadashi would undoubtedly never take another birth, Lord Vishnu’s followers give up all other religious pursuits and focus solely on fasting on this day.
A person who chants the praises of Lord Hari on this day receives the same benefit as if they had donated seven islands. A person who worships Tulasi-devi during this time receives the same benefit as if they had donated a mature tulsi plant, as there are roots and sub roots growing from it. He or she also receives the same benefit as if they had donated 100 cows to charity.
One of the most revered days in the Hindu calendar is this wonderful Ekadashi. It honors the Lord’s three main Lilas.
- The Lord’s pledge to guard King Bali.
- The union of Lord and Tulsi
- The Lord raising Mount Govardhan.
1) One of the key principles of Prabodhini Ekadashi is that everyone is equally affected by karma!
We think that on Dev-podhi Ekadashi, right before the monsoon, Lord Vishnu visits King Bali’s abode in the underworld. At Prabodhini, the Lord bids him farewell and departs for His abode in Vaikuntha after the monsoon. The background to Prabodhini is as follows:
- A young man once visited King Bali’s yagna and made an odd request.
- He wants enough space to engage in religious and spiritual pursuits in peace and without interference.
In a country renowned for its plenty, peace, tolerance, respect for intellect, and a sense of camaraderie even even the devas and danavas. Bali was shocked that this young man needs a separate plot of land in order to do his customary, everyday rites. The young guy explained to the man, “I feel that I need somewhere where I may do my most basic daily rituals without let or hindrance because owner of the land moved me on while reciting my Gayatri and doing pranayam.” The young man was a Lord Vaman, small in stature but filled with lofty goals, becoming Viraat as a result!
The Lord acquired a huge shape and covered every square foot of land that King Bali owned in just two strides after convincing him that the land would be covered by His own three strides. The monarch was at his wits’ end and had nothing else to offer. If he did not keep this pledge, the Lord warned him that there would be terrible repercussions. The queen of Bali intervened as Saha-dharma-charini and urged that Bali offer his own self as the third stage because, after all, the ego and mind are bigger than all “it” owns. Bali was forced into a realm that had been built just for him when Lord Vaman, who was satisfied with the response, put His foot on Bali’s head and propelled him into the nether regions.
Bali was therefore granted the rarest of blessings by becoming a “Chiranjivi,” or eternal.
2) Lord Vishnu and Goddess Tulsiji’s marriage is reenacted to commemorate Prabodhini Ekadashi
In Vaishnav temples and Havelies all across India, the Lord Vishnu is represented by a Shaligram shila. A Tulsi plant is taken into the inner sanctum in a decorative planter. A sugarcane mandap is used during the wedding ceremony. A marriage band plays outside the Shri Nathji Haveli in Nathadwara, and a feast follows. Special attire, jewelry, music, and delicacies are all significant components of the celebrations.
Lord Vishnu is a symbol of the “order” in the cosmos. Tulsidevi stands for “taap,” the most potent karma-inducing deed one can perform!
Taap is not restitution. The Western interpreters did not have a word for taap, but they interpreted it in the same way they interpreted everything else—as atonement for the “original sin.” Sadly, we have grown fixated with Englishmen’s interpretations of our scriptures from the 18th century!! Hindus reject the idea of original sin because we think we are divine children and a part of the eternal God. For us, taap is a means of self-purification, gaining religious merit, and approaching our divine nature.
Tulsi, also known as Vrinda, performed intensive taap in the forest beside the Yamuna River because she desired to wed Lord Vishnu. Her taap was so outstanding that the place was given the name Vrindavan in her honor. Despite the fact that her karma had intended for her to marry a demon, the virtue she had amassed via her taap permitted her to subsequently wed Lord Vishnu.
Any challenge in life can be conquered by karma. If we are determined, the Lord will guide us to the right place. Lord Krushna exhorts Arjun to perform karma even amid the epic conflict between the Bharat princes. A person can only earn enough merit by performing their karma in the right way if they want to receive God’s grace. The Lord declares that the passive is not covered by God’s grace.
Through her karma, faith, commitment, devotion, and modesty, Tulsi / Vrinda attained the favor of the Eternal Lord. Since even a passing association with the basil plant brings to mind His beloved Tulsi, the Lord graciously accepts whatever is brought to Him by His followers as long as a Tulsi leaf is placed on it.
So that the Lord will accept us as we are, let our karma be enormous!
3) Lord imparted a lesson on humility to Indra
Lord Krishna made the decision to modify the whole idea of yagnas after observing that the Brahmins no longer performed the yagnas for the welfare of the community but merely to feed themselves. The herdsmen of Vraj assembled for a massive yagna to worship Indra, King of the devas, during the yearly Divali festival. They were given advice by Lord Krushna, who is Yagna-Narayan incarnate, to carry out the yagna in its purest form and give the food to everyone in Vraj. Instead of putting all that food into the fire and the elites’ bellies, he urged them to perceive the divine in the spirits of the hills, the cows, and the very individuals who made up their society.
The use of Lord Indra’s yagna to impart this lesson to the people of Vraj did not exactly make him happy. He made the decision to impart his own lesson to the Vrajvasi and Shri Krushna!
He drowned Vraj with rain for seven days and nights so that no one would ever belittle him again!
However, in order to safeguard the inhabitants and animals of Vraj, the Lord raised the mountain Govardhan. To shield Vraj from a deluge on the ground, the giant Shesha Naga created a live wall around them. The rain was destroyed by Sudarshan chakra in order to protect it from an oncoming downpour.
Indra came to apologise after seven nonstop days of rain since he had learned his lesson. He acknowledged his foolishness in attempting to establish his superiority in the Lord’s Lila and humbled before the Lord. Being as gracious as He is, the Lord pardoned Indra and later even assisted him in finding celestial objects Narkasur had taken.
If the Lord had wanted to, He could have punished Indra. In fact, seven days of nonstop rain were more than enough to provoke. Indra could have been murdered and replaced by the Lord in a fraction of the time, but He chose not to!
Our gracious Lord. He is kind to everyone, even to those who don’t love or believe in the Lord. Indra deserved a little indulgence because he was a devotee. According to the Lord, the tempest brought by Indra was a misbehaving child throwing a temper tantrum, therefore He allowed it to continue. After realising his error, Indra came to ask for pardon.
Everyone does have lots of opportunities to change and grow, according to the Lord. Before the Lord took off his head with his Sudarshan chakra, he gave even the foul-mouthed Shishupal more than 100 opportunities. Princes of Kaurav were given numerous opportunities to change. To mediate a settlement between the cousins, the Lord personally went. At Kurukshetra, the Lord destroyed them all after all else had failed. It should come as no surprise that the Lord gave Indra seven days to correct his error.
In order to revive the yagna’s historic principles, the Lord worshipped Mount Govardhan on the first day of the New Year.
The Lord raised Mount Govardhan on Labh Panchami to shield Vraj from Indra’s immature fury. The rains stopped on Prabodhini Ekadashi, and the Lord relocated Mount Govardhan to its rightful location. Soon later, Indra arrived to ask for forgiveness.
Let’s ask the Lord for forgiveness and protection on this Prabodhini Ekadashi, just like Indra did!
YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: