Varuthini Ekadashi is observed during the waning phase of moon in March/April. It is believed that observing Varuthini Ekadasi will make a person fortunate, prosperous and helps in redemption of sins and in attaining moksha. The greatness of this Ekadasi fasting was narrated to Yudhishtira (the eldest of Pandavas) by Lord Krishna and is mentioned in the Bhavishyottara Purana. In 2009, the date Varuthini Ekadasi is April 21. In , and Europe, Varuthini Ekadashi is marked on April 20.
It is believed that by observing Varuthini Ekadashi one can attain the result of performing different types of charities. All the regular fasting rules attached to Ekadasi are observed during Varuthini Ekadasi.
Ekadasi fasting is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and is observed on the 11th day of waning and waxing phase of moon in a traditional Hindu calendar
Varuthini Ekadashi occurs during the waning of the moon in the month of Vaisakha (April – May). By observing fast on this particular Ekadasi, sins are cleansed and the person is blessed with happiness and wealth. The importance of this Ekadasi was narrated to Yudhisthira by Lord Krishna.
It is believed that those women who observe the Varuthini Ekadasi will soon step into a fortunate phase in life. Those who undertake this fasting is also blessed with ‘moksha.’
How to observe?
On the Dashami day, the day before the Varuthini Ekadasi those devotees who are fasting does not consume food made from urad dal, red lentils, chickpeas, spinach, kondo, and honey. Usually only a single meal is taken on the day and it is never served on bell metal plate. Food is consumed in one’s own house and the devotee abstains from gambling and sex.
On the Varuthini Ekadasi day, people spend the day in reading the Bhagavada Purana and minimum contact with people – this is to abstain from talking. Rice is avoided. Usually people do not sleep during day time. Some people also stay awake during night. Betel nuts and leaf are avoided.
On the Dwadasi day, the day after Varuthini Ekadasi, the same routine as observed on Dashami is followed. Men usually avoid shaving. Taking an oil bath is also avoided.
Food eaten during Ekadasi?
Ekadasi, or Ekadashi, is an important Upvaas (fast) dedicated to Lord Vishnu. Millions of Hindu devotees observe Ekadasi, which is considered highly auspicious by Lord Vishnu devotees. The traditional approach is to abstain from food completely on the day. But nowadays a complete fast is not possible for many people. Such people consume certain food items on the Ekadasi day and observe only a partial fast.
It is believed that demon Mura found a dwelling place in the rice and Lord Vishnu appeared in the form of Ekadasi to annihilate Mura. Therefore devotees who fast on the Ekadashi day avoid food made from grains.
Many devotees due to several reasons – like health and job commitments – observe partial fast on the day. Such people avoid non-vegetarian and food items made from beans, pulses and grains, especially rice.
The food that can be consumed on the Ekadasi day includes fresh and dried fruits, milk products, vegetables and nuts.
As the list of Ekadasi food expands there will be new issues cropping up like – Are you sure this can be consumed on Ekadasi.
So the golden rule is avoid pulses and grains on Ekadasi.
Drink lots of water and eat fresh and dried fruits.
In Hinduism, Upvaas is meant to bring a person close to Brahman. So forget about the rules and regulations and what you are going to gain from the Ekadashi fast. Spend the day in purifying the mind and body.