Abstinence as they say is advancement to spirituality. It is one of the virtues that are prescribed through the religious tenets of almost all faiths in some way or the other. Though there are various ways of exercising this virtue, the most common mode applied in the religious practise is abstinence from food. There are many festivities linked with Puja that require the worshipper to refrain from food partially or completely till the completion of rituals. In Hinduism, there are quite a lot of occasions that demand such an act. Ekadashi, an occasion that arrives two times in a month, is a peculiar day that is significant only because of the Upavasa or Vrat that is observed on this day. The Puja to be performed on this day can performed buying materials from an online Puja items shop.
The Muhurta of the Fast: Ekadashi is he day that occurs on the eleventh day of each of the two fortnights in a lunar month of Hindu calendar. The word ‘Ekadashi’ itself denotes ‘the eleventh’. In a lunar month, there are two fortnights, which are called Krishna Paksha (Dark Phase) and Shukla Paksha (Bright Phase). Therefore the Tithi falls on the accurate phase of waxing and waning moon when the moon appears around ¾ full and ¾ dark respectively.
The Right Procedure of the Vratam: The Upavas observed on Ekadashi should last from sunrise of the day till the sunrise of the next day. The rigorous or complete fast are not mandatory for this day, mainly restricting from grains is prescribed. Also, spices, salt, chick peas, beans, honey, etc. are to be refrained from during the ritual. The complete fast is called Nirjala Vrat, in which even water is not consumed. The categories of the food that can be eaten in case of a partial abstention are as follows:
- Potatoes including Sweet Potatoes
- Fresh Fruits and Dry Fruits
- Milk and Ghee.
- Sugar, Rock Salt and Black Pepper
- Ginger, lemon, Green Chilly
- Buckwheat (Kuttu)
- Nut and nut oil
For ending the Upavas on the next day, food made of grain or Charanamrit (water obtained after bathing God Vishnu’s feet) may be used. However, in case of partial fast, only food items prepared using cereals or grains should be included.
The Puja Ritual for the Day: The fasting on this day is preceded by Puja of Lord Vishnu. Many e-shops sell online idols, which can be bought to ease the shopping process. The devotees, who observe this fast should get up early in the morning, bathe and offer prayers with offerings of Tulsi and fruits to Vishnu’s idol or image. Lighting a lamp and meditating for a brief period should also be a part of the Puja. Worshippers can also visit temples as per their convenience.
The Fruits of the Fast: The purpose of the fast is to cleanse the body along with the soul. While fasting and scanty meals sans grains allows toxicity to be drained away from the body, they also effects the mind spiritually. It is believed that observance of this ritual washes away the sins of man. They say that along with tides, the moon also has its influence on the psychological condition of human. The contemplation and meditating power of increases in human during this phase and so the spirituality seekers may take advantage of this phenomenon to get into devotion. People should pray and practise this abstention selflessly and also buy online Puja items from websites that sell genuine products.