Indira Ekadashi

.  Pashankusha Ekadashi

.  Rama Ekadashi

.  Prabhodhini Ekadashi

.  Vaikuntha Ekadashi

.  Mokshada  Ekadashi

.  Saphala Ekadashi

.  Paush Putrada Ekadashi

.  Sattila Ekadashi

.  Bhaimi Ekadashi

.  Utpanna Ekadashi

 Amalaki Ekadashi

.  Parama Ekadashi

.  Padmini Visuddha Ekadashi

. Conclusion

The seventh month of the lunar(Vedic) calendar is Ashvin which corresponds to September-October of the Gregorian calendar. There are two Ekadashis in this month which are Indira Ekadashi occurring in the dark fortnight(Krishna Paksh) and Paashankusha Ekadashi occurring in the bright fortnight (Shukla Paksh) of the month.

13. Indira Ekadashi

Since this Ekadashi falls in the Pitru Paksh period it is also referred to as Ekadashi Shraadh and Shraadha rites of dead ancestors are also performed on this day. Observance of this Ekadashi removes all sins not only of the person but also of his forefathers. The legend relates to a King named Indrasena a devotee of Lord Vishnu who was the ruler of Mahishmatipura. The King led a prosperous and happy life with his family. One day Lord Narada visited the King and related to him that his father had not obtained salvation and was in the abode of Lord Yama the God of death. He had requested Narada to inform his son the King to perform the Indira Ekadashi Vrata to relieve him of his suffering and help him to reach the abode of Vishnu. The King gladly agreed and with the help and advice of Sage Narada he observed the Vrata. The King’s father subsequently attained moksha and reached the abode of Vishnu. On this days prayers and fast is undertaken with special prayers to one’s forefathers and ancestors.

14. Paashankusha Ekadashi

This Ekadashi is also referred to as Papankusha or Ashvin Shukla Ekadashi. Lord Vishnu is worshipped in the Padmanabha form as related by Lord Krishna to Yudhishtira. One who observes this Vrata has all sufferings due to sinful acts removed and attains liberation. As per the legend a cruel hunter named Krodhana lived on the Vindhyachal Mountains. He was always indulging in sinful acts like killing, drinking etc. A day before his death Lord Yama the God of death sent his aides to warn him about his misdeeds and its repercussions after death. The hunter Krodhana was afraid and wished to get rid of the effects of his sinful actions. He came across a sage named Angira who on hearing of his plight was moved by compassion. He asked the hunter to perform the Pashaankusha Ekadashi Vrata. Krodhana with faith and devotion performed the Vrata chanting the name of Lord Vishnu all night. He fell asleep and as it was time for his death Lord Yama’s aides came to take his soul to hell but they were unsuccessful. His soul went to heaven as he died when he was still observing the fast. The method of performing this vrata is similar to the usual Ekadashi Vrata of prayers and fasting.

The eighth month of the lunar (Vedic) calendar is Kartik which corresponds to October- November of the Gregorian calendar. There are two Ekadashis in this month which are Rama Ekadashi occurring in the dark fortnight(Krishna Paksh) and Prabodhini Ekadashi occurring in the bright fortnight(Shukla Paksh) of the month.

15. Rama Ekadashi

One who observes this Ekadashi has all his sins washed away. The legend as related by Lord Krishna to Yudhishtira gives the importance of this Ekadashi. Once there lived a King named Muchukunda who was a loyal devotee of Vishnu. The King had a daughter Chandrabhaga who was married to Prince Shobhana. Unlike the King and his daughter, Prince Shobhana was unable to observe the Ekadashi Vrata as he was too weak minded to keep fasts. But on seeing that everyone in the Kingdom observed the Vrata he too decided to observe it. Unfortunately during the course of the night, weak with hunger and thirst he died. But due to his good merit due to performance of the Vrata he was enthroned as the King of Devapura, the kingdom of celestial beings for a temporary period as he had observed the Vrata only once in his lifetime. One day a saint from the Kingdom of Muchukunda arrived at Devapura. The prince told him that he wished his wife to help him in making Devapura his permanent abode as she had been observing the Ekadashi Vrata all her life. The saint returned and on relating the events to the princess she was excited and wished to be reunited with her husband. With the help of Sage Vamadeva she could enter the celestial kingdom of Devapura. Thus it was the power of Rama Ekadashi Vrata that enabled her to be reunited with her husband and thus their celestial Kingdom could become their permanent Kingdom. The prayers and fast observed on this day are similar to the ones associated with the Ekadashi Vrata.

16. Prabodhini Ekadashi

This Ekadashi is also referred to as Dev Uthani, Bodhini, Uthana or Dev Uthana Ekadashi. It is believed that on this day Lord Vishnu woke up from his Cosmic sleep (Yoga Nidra) marking the end of Chaturmaas Vrata. Observance of this Vrata removes the effects of sins committed and leads a person to liberation or Moksha. The legend related to this Vrata was related to Sage Narada by Lord Brahma. Once Goddess Lakshmi the Consort of Lord Vishnu complained to Lord Vishnu about his indiscipline of either sleeping continuously or staying awake continuously for long periods. This resulted in keeping the other Gods like Brahma, Shiva etc waiting indefinitely for long periods for His darshan during his uninterrupted long sleep. Also during his unawakened period the Asuras took advantage of the Lord’s absence and caused a spread of Adharma on earth. Lord Vishnu promised to find a solution to the problem. Meanwhile a Demon named Shankhyayan wished to deprive human beings of the knowledge of the Vedas and spread evil or Adharma hence he stole the Vedas and the Devas and Sages rushed to Lord Vishnu for succour. Lord Vishnu then fought with the demon and retrieved the Vedas and returned it back to the Devas. Then he insisted that he would go into Yoga Nidra for four months uninterruptedly ending on Prabodhini Ekadashi day. The procedure for observance of this Vrata is similar to the observance on the usual Ekadashi Vrata day.

The ninth month of the lunar(Vedic) calendar is Margashirsha(Agrahayana) corresponding to November-December of the Gregorian calendar. There are two Ekadashis in this month which are Vaikunta Ekadashi occurring in the dark fortnight (Krishna Paksh) and Mokshada Ekadashi occurring in the bright fortnight (Shukla Paksh) of the month.

17.  Vaikunta Ekadashi

This Ekadashi is said to be very auspicious as on this day the gate to Lord Vishnu’s inner sanctum or Vaikunta Dwara is open. The Vishnu Puran states that fasting on this day is equivalent to fasting on all the remaining 23 Ekadashis. This Ekadashi is also referred to as Mukkoti Ekadashi. Devotees throng to gain entry into Vishnu temples on this holy day. The legend revolves around the battle between Lord Vishnu and the demon Mura. Lord Vishnu rested for a while during the long drawn battle. When Mura attacked him while he was sleeping, the female energy of Lord Vishnu emerged from his body and defeated him on this Ekadashi day. Lord Vishnu was impressed by her and named her Ekadashi and stated that those who worshipped her on this day would reach his abode Vaikuntha. This was the beginning of the first Ekadashi Vrata. On this day, devotees pray, fast and sing the glories of Lord Vishnu.

18. Mokshada Ekadashi

This Ekadashi is also referred to as Mauna Ekadashi and the day is also celebrated as Gita Jayanthi day as it was on this day that Lord Krishna was said to have narrated the Bhagavad Gita to Arjuna during the Kurukshetra war. As the name states, this Ekadashi forgives one from all sins and leads to liberation. It also leads to liberating one’s forefathers and granting them heaven. According to the legend, once there lived a King named Vaikanasa who was rich and powerful but was unhappy as he dreamt that his father after death was being pushed into hell and he was helpless to free his father from misery. He then went to Parvata Muni to help him. The Sage could visualise the past, present and future and found out that the father was suffering from the effects of a few sins that he had committed during his lifetime. He asked King Vaikanasa to observe the Mokshada Ekadashi Vrata to help his father achieve liberation from hell. The King along with the Queen and members of the royal family observed this Vrata and eventually saved his father from hell. The usual routines of Ekadashi Vrata are observed on this day and Bhagavad Gita is also chanted along with Vishnusahasranama and other Stotras expounding the glories of the Lord.

The tenth month of the lunar(Vedic) calendar is Paush which corresponds to December-January of the Gregorian calendar. The two Ekadashis in this month are Saphala Ekadashi occurring in the dark fortnight(Krishna Paksh) and Paush Putrada Ekadashi occurring in the bright fortnight (Shukla Paksh) of the month.

19. Saphala Ekadashi

As the name suggests, observance of this Vrata enables one to attain success in all his endeavours. According to the legend, King Mahishmata was a famous and powerful King. He had four sons of whom Lumpaka his eldest son was a no gooder and wastrel. He was also arrogant and since the King did not wish any harm to befall his subjects he banished Lumpaka from his Kingdom. Living in a forest Lumpaka began to rob travellers. He slept under a banyan tree where there happened to be a small idol of Lord Vishnu. His meals consisted of raw meat and fruits. He never took the trouble to offer prayers and worship to the idol. Thus he lived like this for several years. One day he fell ill and became very weak. He was unable to hunt for meat and rob travellers. He found some fruits near the tree half eaten by birds and offering them to the idol prayed for recovery from his illness. Sad about his character and life he shed tears and prayed the whole day and night. Unknown to him it was the Saphala Ekadashi day. Pleased with his devotion, a voice spoke from the sky that Lord Vishnu had washed away all his sins and he should return to his father and start a new life. Lumpaka returned to the Kingdom leading a pious and virtuous life always taking interest in the welfare of the people. In course of time he became the King and ruled justly and wisely for a number of years. The prayers and fasts observed on this day are as per the usual Ekadashi routine.

20. Paush Putrada Ekadashi

This day is very auspicious especially for childless couples and the legend was related by Lord Krishna to Yudhishtira. Once there lived in the Kingdom of Bhadravati, King Suketuman and Queen Shaibya. Their greatest unhappiness was lack of progeny. One day frustrated and worried, the King left the kingdom and reached the banks of the Manasarovar lake where there were many ashrams of sages. The Sages revealed that they were Vishvadevas or a class of semi divine devas and asked the King to observe the Paush Putrada Ekadashi. On performing the Vrata with faith and devotion the King was blessed with a son. The method of observance of this Vrata is similar to the usual Ekadashi routine of fasting and prayer.

The eleventh month of the Lunar(Vedic) calendar is Magh which corresponds to January-February of the Gregorian calendar. There are two Ekadashis in this month, Sattila Ekadashi which occurs in the dark fortnight(Krishna Paksh) and Bhaimi Ekadashi which occurs in the bright fortnight(Shukla Paksh) of the month.

21. Sattila Ekadashi

It is also referred to as Shattila or Tilda Ekadashi. The name has been derived from the word ‘til’ meaning sesame seeds which are considered highly auspicious for ceremonies as they are said to have the capacity to remove the Rajo Guna and increase the Sathva component and are said to be a symbol of immortality. The legend revolves around a rich and pious woman who performed all Ekadashi Vratas with faith and devotion. She would give alms to Brahmins of food, jewellery, clothes and other items with the exception of food and grains. Once on Sattila Ekadashi day Lord Krishna approached her disguised as a poor mendicant with shabby and torn attire begging for food. The woman agreed to give him food only on condition that he would mention his gothra. But the mendicant continued to beg for food. The rich woman was angry and placed a rolled ball of clay instead of food in the mendicant’s begging pot. The mendicant blessed her and left. To her dismay when she went indoors to partake her meals she found that all the food items had turned into clay. Even her stored items like grains, fruits and vegetables had become clay. Unable to eat as the days passed by she became weaker and weaker. All her wealth could not help her. She began praying with deep faith and repentance to Lord Krishna to relieve her of her misery. Lord Krishna then appeared in her dreams and informed her that Anna Daana or feeding the hungry was the greatest Daana. He asked her to perform the Sattila Ekadashi Vrata with sincerity. She heeded the Lord’s words and donated sesame seeds to all the hungry and poor who arrived at her door. Eventually all the food items in the house regained their original form. From then onwards the woman would always feed the poor and since then this Vrata is performed to relieve one from all miseries. The method of performing this Vrata is similar to the routine of prayer and fasting done on Ekadashi days.

22. Bhaimi Ekadashi

It is also referred to as Jaya or Bhishma Ekadashi and was related to Yudhishtira by Lord Krishna as mentioned in the Padma Purana. This day is considered as highly auspicious as during the Mahabharata war Bhishma who was lying on a bed of arrows and divulged the Vishnu Sahasranama Stotra to the Pandavas passed away to the heavenly abode of Vishnu. Observance of this day is said to eradicate sins and lead to liberation. According to the legend, the court of Lord Indra was graced by many celestial Apsaras and dancers. Chitrasena was Indra’s chief musician in the court accompanied by his wife Malini and son Malyavan. A beautiful apsara named Pushpavati and Malyavan were attracted to each other due to which they could not concentrate on their performance. Angered by the discord in the performance Indra cursed them to become ghosts and banished them from his Kingdom. They roamed the forests and the caves grief stricken at their plight. Abstaining from food and water one day they sunk in despair beneath a Peepal tree unable to sleep the whole night. Unknown to them the day was the Bhaimi Ekadashi day and as they had observed fast and maintained vigil the whole night they were relieved of their sins and regained their original form. Joyously they returned to their celestial abode to the Kingdom of Lord Indra. The method of observing this Vrata is similar to that observed on Ekadashi day.

The twelfth month of the Lunar(Vedic) calendar is Phalgun which corresponds to February- March of the Gregorian calendar. There are two Ekadashis in this month, Utpana Ekadashi occurring in the dark fortnight(Krishna Paksh) and Amalaki Ekadashi occurring in the bright fortnight(Shukla Paksh) of the month.

23. Utpana Ekadashi

It is also referred to as Utpatti Ekadashi and the legend associated with this Ekadashi is about the battle between Lord Vishnu and the demon Mura. Tired from the battle when Lord Vishnu was resting for a while Mura attacked him but a female being rose from Lord Vishnu’s body and vanquished him. Lord Vishnu then awoke and named her Ekadashi and blessed her that anyone who worships her and fasts and offers prayers to him on this day would be free from all sins and attain salvation. The same routine of prayer and fasting are observed for this Ekadashi also.

24. Amalaki Ekadashi

This Ekadashi Vrata originates from the word Amalaki meaning gooseberry and its observance brings prosperity and great benefits. According to the legend King Chaitraratha ruled the Kingdom of Vaidisa. He was a loyal devotee of Lord Vishnu and due to the blessings of the Lord the kingdom prospered. On the holy Ekadashi day the King and his subjects observed fast and prayers with devotion praying the whole night. A hunter passing by also joined in the gathering with faith and devotion and later went home to his meals. Due to his observance of this holy day he was reborn as a King in his next birth named Vasurath. Once on an expedition the King lost his way and was captured by some tribes who considered him their enemy and began torturing him with their weapons. But to their surprise none of the weapons could harm him. Then they heard a Divine voice from the sky informing the King and the tribes about the merit accrued due to observance of the Amalaki Vrata in his previous life. The King was released and he ensured that throughout his life he observed the Ekadashi Vrata. All the routines observed during Ekadashi vrata are observed on this day except that the Amalaki tree is worshipped with water, incense and flowers and Brahmins are fed beneath this tree.

The Thirteenth month in the lunar(Vedic) calendar is the Adhik Maas or Purushottam or Mal Maas when every third year one extra month is added to the lunar calendar. There are two Ekadashis in this month Parama Ekadashi in the dark fortnight (Krishna Paksh) and Padmini Visuddha Ekadashi in the bright fortnight(Shukla Paksh) of the month.

25. Parama Ekadashi

The Ekadashi Vratas observed in the Adhik Maas are said to be highly auspicious and reap rich benefits and liberation for the individual who observes it. According to this legend in a city named Kampilya there lived a Brahmin named Sumedha with his wife. They were pious and generous and inspite of being poor would always greet guests and offer whatever they possessed while going hungry themselves. Sumedha felt that it was not possible to live a happy and contented life in poverty and decided to go to another city to earn some more money. His wife advised him to avoid worry as she felt that they would become wealthy by propitiating the Lord and by good and charitable deeds. One day a noble sage named Koundinya visited their house and was extremely pleased with the service done to him by Sumedha and his wife. He asked them if they had any wish he could fulfil. Both of them asked him for advice to alleviate their poverty. Sage Koundinya asked them to perform the Parama Ekadashi Vrata which occurs in the Krishna Paksh of Adhik Maas which would alleviate their misery and make them wealthy and happy. He informed them that this Vrata had even been performed by Lord Kubera making him wealthy and prosperous and eventually the Lord of Wealth. The couple then performed the Vrata with faith and devotion and subsequently their desire was fulfilled. The method of observing this Vrata is similar to the Ekadashi routine of prayer and fasting.

26. Padmini Visuddha Ekadashi

It is also referred to as the Kamala Ekadashi and observance of this Vrata relieves man from suffering and helps in attaining liberation. According to the legend in the Treta Yuga there was a King named Kartavirya. The King was unhappy as he had no progeny inspite of marrying a number of times. He undertook several religious austerities but to no avail. He continued to remain childless. In despair he set out of the Kingdom to the forests. Unknown to him one of his queens Padmini observed him and decided to follow him. On the way she met the Maha Pativrata Anasuya and explained her plight asking her for a way to relieve her from her misery. Anasuya asked her to observe both the Ekadashis that occur in the Adhik Maas. The queen Padmini gladly heeded her advice and along with her husband devoutly observed the Vratas. Soon thereafter Lord Vishnu appeared before them and blessed them with a son whom they named Karthaviryarjuna. He grew up to be powerful and was said to have even defeated and imprisoned Ravana. All the routines usually followed during Ekadashi are observed in this Vrata.


Thus it can be observed that Ekadashi is considered a very holy and auspicious day dedicated to the worship of Lord Vishnu. Many Puranas like the Vishnu Purana and Markandeya Purana extol the benefits of observing the Vratas of Ekadashi and it is believed that Lord Vishnu transformed himself into Ekadashi to redeem mankind from all sins and lead him on the path to Moksha or liberation.

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