What is Vaikunt Ekadashi

Vaikuntha Ekadashi is one of the most important festivals in Hinduism and is celebrated with great devotion and fervour by Hindus all over the world. This festival is observed on the eleventh day of the Hindu lunar month of Margashirsha, which typically falls in December or January.

The word 'Vaikuntha' refers to the celestial abode of Lord Vishnu, the preserver of the Hindu trinity, and 'Ekadashi' means the eleventh day of the lunar month. Vaikuntha Ekadashi, therefore, symbolises the path to liberation and the attainment of moksha, which is the ultimate goal of Hinduism. The significance of Vaikuntha Ekadashi is deeply rooted in Hindu mythology. People believe that on this auspicious day, the gates of Vaikuntha or Lord Vishnu’s abode or home, are open. People who observe fast on this day, repent for their sins, and perform puja, are granted entry and salvation.

The occasion of Vaikunta Ekadasi is celebrated with fasting, performing puja, and singing devotional songs. The fast is broken on the following day, Dwadashi, which is considered to be highly auspicious. In addition to its religious significance, Vaikuntha Ekadashi is also seen as a symbol of hope, peace, and positivity. It is a time to reflect on one's deeds and to seek redemption for past misdeeds. It is a time to come closer to one's inner self and to seek divine blessings for peace and happiness.

Historical Significance of Vaikuntha Ekadashi

The above reading must have familiarised you with the origin of this festival, lets get deeper into its enchanting history. The history behind celebrating Vaikuntha Ekadashi is rooted in Hindu mythology and spirituality. According to Hindu scriptures, the festival of Vaikuntha Ekadashi is associated with Lord Vishnu, the preserver of the Hindu trinity.

The Vaikunta Ekadasi story goes that once, a devotee of Lord Vishnu named Hrisikesha was disturbed by the cycle of birth and death and sought refuge in the Lord. Lord Vishnu said to him that by observing the holy fast of Vaikuntha Ekadashi, one can make place for themselves in Vaikuntha, and liberate themselves from the cycle of birth and death. Since then, Vaikuntha Ekadashi has been celebrated as a day of fasting and devotion, with the belief that observing the fast and performing puja to Lord Vishnu will lead to liberation and the attainment of moksha. The festival is celebrated with great devotion and fervour by Hindus all over the world.

Vaikuntha Ekadashi 2023 Date and Time

Vaikunta Ekadasi 2023 will occur on Monday, January 2.

Ekadashi timings:

Start: Ekadashi time runs from 7:11 PM on January 1

End: Vaikuntha ekadashi ends at 8:23 PM on January 2.

How Is Vaikuntha Ekadashi Celebrated?

The festival of Vaikuntha Ekadashi is celebrated in various ways, depending on the region and the personal beliefs and practices of the individual. However, some of the common practices during the festival include the following:

  1. Fasting: Vaikuntha Ekadashi is traditionally observed as a day of fasting. Devout Hindus abstain from food and water for the entire day, breaking the fast only on the following day, Dwadashi. The fast is believed to purify the body and the mind and to bring one closer to the divine.
  2. Puja: Vaikunta Ekadashi is a day of puja and worship. Hindus offer prayers and perform puja to Lord Vishnu, the preserver of the Hindu trinity, and his consort, Goddess Lakshmi. This is done with the belief that Lord Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi are exceptionally benevolent on this day and that their blessings bring peace and prosperity.
  3. Recitation of devotional songs and hymns: Vaikuntha Ekadashi is a day of devotion and spiritual reflection. Hindus recite devotional songs and hymns praising Lord Vishnu and singing his glories. This is done with the belief that singing the Lord's praises brings one closer to the divine and helps to purify the mind and the soul.
  4. Distribution of Prasad: Vaikuntha Ekadashi is a day of charity and giving. Devout Hindus distribute food, clothes, and other necessities to the poor and the needy as a service to the divine.

In conclusion, Vaikuntha Ekadashi is a day of fasting, puja, devotional singing, and charity. It is celebrated with great devotion and fervour by Hindus worldwide and symbolises the path to liberation and the attainment of moksha. It is a time to reflect on one's deeds and to seek divine blessings for peace and happiness.

Rules to Be Followed During Fasting

The auspicious day of Vaikuntha Ekadashi is observed with fasting and remembering the grace of God. The fast is believed to purify the body and the mind and to bring one closer to the divine. Here are some of the common Vaikunta Ekadashi fasting rules:

  1. Abstinence from food and water: The fast of Vaikuntha Ekadashi is observed by abstaining from food and water for the entire day. Some individuals may take fruits or milk, but this is typically not encouraged during this fast.
  2. Restrictions on certain foods: Some individuals may have restrictions on certain foods during the fast, such as avoiding grains, pulses, and beans or abstaining from non-vegetarian food.
  3. Maintaining purity: During the fast, it is vital to maintain physical and mental purity. This includes avoiding physical intimacy and avoiding negative thoughts and actions.
  4. Observing the fast until Dwadashi: The fast of Vaikuntha Ekadashi is typically observed until the following day, Dwadashi. The fast is broken only after performing puja and offering prayers to Lord Vishnu.
  5. Devotional activities: In addition to fasting, it is encouraged to participate in devotional activities such as puja, charity or Daan Pradaan, and singing of religious songs.

It is important to note that the rules of fasting may vary depending on the personal beliefs and practices of the individual. Some individuals may have more strict or lenient rules, while others may not observe the fast. The important thing is to follow the rules that align with one's personal beliefs and practices and to observe the fast with devotion and a pure heart.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Vaikuntha Ekadashi is celebrated to attain liberation from the cycle of birth and death and to attain the blessings of Lord Vishnu. Observing the fast of Vaikuntha Ekadashi is believed to provide a path to the Lord's abode, Vaikuntha, and to bring the devotee closer to the divine. It is celebrated on the eleventh day of the waxing phase of the moon in the Hindu month of Margashirsha (December/January).
The traditions associated with Vaikuntha Ekadashi include fasting, puja to Lord Vishnu, and reading of the Bhagavata Purana. Devotees also offer flowers, incense, and other offerings to Lord Vishnu and perform aarti to seek his blessings.
The fast of Vaikuntha Ekadashi is considered an auspicious and highly spiritual practice in Hinduism. Observing the fast is believed to purify the body and mind and bring the devotee closer to the divine. The fast is also thought to obtain liberation from the unending cycle of birth and death and to provide the devotee with a path to the Lord's abode in Vaikuntha.
Vaikuntha Ekadashi's fast lasts 24 hours, from sunrise to sunrise the next day. Some devotees also observe a partial fast, which involves avoiding certain foods or eating only fruits and nuts.
The benefits of observing Vaikuntha Ekadashi include physical, mental, and spiritual purification, a closer connection to the divine, liberation from the cycle of birth and death, and the attainment of moksha.
Vaikunta Ekadashi 2023 will be observed on the 2ndn of January and will continue till the 3rd of the same month. Hence it is observed for a period of 24 hours annually. The dates of the festival depend on the Hindu calendar, Panchang. You can refer to the Hindu Panchang on the InstaAstro website to keep yourself up to date with the upcoming Hindu festivals. You can also mark the dates and set reminders so you do not miss out on the fun and blessings that Hindu festivals bring just by downloading the InstaAstro app!
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