The word Ekadashi when translated means eleven. There are two Ekadashi in a month and there are two Saphala Ekadashi in a year. They come once in January and once in December. We will now discuss some more details about these days and how you can go about celebrating the same. We will start with the significance of the Saphala Ekadashi.
The Saphala Ekadashi
The Saphala Ekadashi is the day of Lord Hari. It is believed that if you fast on the Saphala Ekadashi you will fast with the Lord. The Hindus have been practicing fasting on Saphala Ekadashi for many years now. The Saphala Ekadashi is also called the Pausha-Krishna Ekadasi. The Lord Hari is none other than Narayan.
Offer Fruits to Narayana
It is said that one who can fast on the Saphala Ekadashi becomes very close to the Lord Narayan. The devotees must offer fruits to the Lord on this day of Saphala Ekadashi to please him. The food items offered by the devotees to the Lord are pomegranate, jambira fruit, betal nuts, betal leaves, coconut, and various types of nuts, cloves, mangoes and guavas.
Some devotees also offer aromatic spices. Along with these the devotee must offer ghee lamps and incense sticks to the Lord. Apart from these offerings the devotee must stay awake all through the night. The devotees must listen to the glorious tales of the Lord Hari as they stay awake all through the night.
If a devotee can follow all these points he will be blessed and will get a lot of happiness bestowed upon him. It is considered to be one of the most significant ways of worshipping and pleasing the Lord Narayan. Even today a lot of people from all across the country do the Saphala Ekadashi with full devotion and dedication. It is a huge event in all the temples of the Lord Krishna across the country. This is primarily because Lord Krishna was an avtar of Lord Vishnu.
Stories of Saphala Ekadashi Vrat and Prince Lumpka
We will now tell you some stories that form a part of the Saphala Ekadashi celebrations and is read out during the night of the Saphala Ekadashi. Once upon a time there was a city that was called Champavati. It was ruled by a king named Maahishmata. The king had four sons. The eldest of his sons was named Lumpaka and he was involved in a lot of sinful activities.
The prince was also spending a lot. His lavish lifestyle slowly reduced the wealth of his father. The prince slowly became very anti religion and God. He would insult the Brahmins and the Gods. The king just had enough and he finally had to arrest his son and sent him to the forests.
The relatives also did not come to the rescue of the prince as his deeds were heinous. The prince thought that he had to avenge his insult. Lumpaka would hunt during the day and feast on wild animals. In the night he would go to the kingdom of his father and steal valuables from there. Many spotted him stealing but they did not complain it to the king thinking it would only harm Lumpaka more.
Lumpaka during his stay in the forest lived under a Banyan tree. He was not aware of the fact that the Banyan tree is very dear to the Lord Narayana. One night which was Saphala Ekadashi he could not sleep the whole night as it was very cold. He was shivering whole night. In the morning he got up and pulling up all his strengths he went into the forest searching for fruits.
Lumpaka collected some fruits and returned to the Banyan tree that was his home. Instead of having the fruits he offered them to the Lord Vishnu. Lumpaka broke down and he started to cry. He told that Lord that he was very lonely and he wanted the kingdom back. The Lord accepted these fruits from the prince and blessed him.
He forgave him for all the sins just for fasting on the day of Saphala Ekadashi. The prince got back his kingdom and that too without many problems after this incident. Since then the people of the country started to celebrate the Saphala Ekadashi. They started to belive that fasting on this day with full devotion can remove all the obstacles and hindrances.
The fast on this day can also remove all sins too. The prince Lumpaka ruled for many years. He would celebrate the Saphala Ekadashi every year to please the Lord. He also got married later and had a lovely son. In the old age Lumpaka handed over his kingdom to his son and he went to the forest to serve the Lord Hari. When he died he was given a place in vaikunth (this is the place of Lord Vishnu).
The significance of the Saphala Ekadashi can be easily made out from this story of the sinful prince. We hope that now you know what the Saphala Ekadashi is all about and how you can get blessed by the Lord Hari himself by fasting on this day. Have a great Saphala Ekadashi!
Saphal Ekadashi Dates
The dates for this occasion are as follows
2013 – 28 December (Saturday)
2014 – 18 December (Thursday)
2015 – will be posted soon