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WHAT IS THE SIGNIFICANCE OF DEV UTTHANA EKADASHI & DEV DEEPAWALI ?


12 FACTS;-- 1-Utthana Ekadasi, or Prabodhini Ekadashi, is observed during the waxing phase of moon in the month of Kartik (October – November). In 2017, the date of Utthana Ekadasi or Dev Prabodhini Ekadashi is October 21.This Ekadashi also marks the official end of Chaturmaas. 2-The importance of Dev Prabodhini Ekadasi narrated to Sage Narada by Brahma. The divine conversation is found in the Skanda Purana. Observing this Ekadasi is believed to help in getting rid of the guilt associated with sins committed and is also a path to liberation (Moksha). Ekadasi is an important fast dedicated to Lord Vishnu. 3-Lord Vishnu goes into sleep on the Ashada Shudha Ekadasi (July – August). He remains in deep slumber during the period and this is known as the Chaturmasa period. On this day, Lord Vishnu wakes up from his Yoga Nidra (cosmic sleep) after the four holy months of the rainy season (Chaturmaas) and this day is also observed as Dev Uthani Ekadasi. 4-Utthana Ekadasi is thus when the gods (devtas) wake up after a four-month slumber. During the four-month period some Hindu communities avoid performing auspicious ceremonies. Marriages, house warming, construction of new houses are only performed after the four month period. 5-On Utthana Ekadasi day, an image of Lord Vishnu is drawn on the ground. Lamps are lit around it and fruits and vegetables are offered to this fresh image. 6-The famous Tulsi Vivah festival is performed on the day by some communities and also on the day after Ekadasi in some regions. 7-The Chatur Mas period also ends with Prabodhini Ekadashi. The famous Kartik Month Pandarpur Yatra is observed on the day. 8-Staunch Vishnu devotees observe a rigid fast on the day by skipping food and staying awake during night. Majority of the people take one meal mostly in the evening and visit shrines dedicated to Lord Vishnu. 9-This ekadashi is second ekadashi of the sacred month of Kartik and signifies the end of four month long ‘Chaturmaas’ period. The end of Chaturmaas period also marks the beginning of the auspicious Hindu wedding season. 10-Just after the festival of Vaishnava Prabodhini Ekadashi comes, ‘Kartik Poornima’ that is observed as ‘Dev Diwali’ (the Diwali of Gods and Goddesses). The celebrations of Prabodhini Ekadashi are very prominent in the Indian states of Maharashtra, Gujarat and Rajasthan. 11-This day of Dev Uthani Ekadashi marks the onset of Hindu marriages and considered as auspicious day as Shaligram (manifestation of Lord Vishnu in the form of black stone) got married to Tulsi. It is famous by the name of Tulsi Vivah. Tulsi Vivah is the ceremonial wedding of the holy basil (Tulsi Plant) with Lord Vishnu or his Avatar Krishna with all pomp and show as in any other wedding. 12-Tulsi Puja is the most important and crucial form of worshiping God in a Hindu family. Tulsi plant is considered as other form of Goddess Mahalaxmi. It is grown in a huge earthen pot and mostly in the front courtyard, in a structure known as Vrindavan made up of red bricks. 12-1-Goddess Mahalakshmi was named as Vrinda at her birth time. People offer holy water to the holy Tulsi plant early morning, perform aarti and parikrama around it to get the blessings. Tulsi Puja is observed during the Tulsi Vivah and Lord Vishnu is worshiped in the form of Shaligram with all pomp and show on the day of Dev Uthani Ekadashi. THE LEGENDS OF DEV UTHANI EKADASHI ; - 1-THE REASON BEHIND THE DEEP SLEEP OF LORD VISHNU ;-- Legends express that the companion of Lord Vishnu, Goddess Lakshmi was unsatisfied with the way Lord Vishnu rested for so long. At times, he was awake for a considerable length of time and at times, he rested constantly for many days. Subsequently, Goddess Lakshmi went to Lord Vishnu and grumbled about his indiscipline of ignorance. 1-1-She told him that few saints and devas, Lord Shiva, Lord Brahma, are compelled to sit idle and keep waiting for a long time to meet him. Consequently, they return displeased without having Lord Vishnu’s Darshan. Moreover, this impartial presence of Lord Vishnu is profoundly exploited by the evil spirits. They take advantage of this opportunity in harming human beings and prompting to the spread of Adharma on earth. 1-2-After calmly listening to Goddess Lakshmi, Lord Vishnu answered that he would soon find a solution to this problem. In the interim, the Devas and Saints visit Lord Vishnu and told him about the burglary of the Vedas by a Demon named Shankhyayan. The evil spirit had conferred this demonstration with a specific purposel to deny the people about the learning of the Vedas and spread Adharma all around. 1-3-On listening to this, Lord Vishnu guaranteed the sages that he would get back the Vedas. In the wake of battling for a few days with Demon Shankhyayan, he was successful in recovering the Vedas. 1-4-He gave back the Vedas to Goddess Lakshmi, Devas and Saints. Also, he demanded sleep with a long rest yet just for four months. This rest began from Ashadha Shuddha Ekadashi until Kartik Shuddha Ekadashi / Dev Uthani Ekadashi 2-HOW EKADASHI EMERGED.;-- Another legend states, when Lord Vishnu was in deep sleep or meditation for four months, a demon known Murdanav came to fight with him. As Lord Vishnu was in deep sleep, a young and dynamic lady emerged out of his eleven senses (Ekadash Indris), which attracted the demon. He wanted to marry her but she put a condition before him that he will have to fight with her and win her. During the battle, the young lady killed the demon, Murdanav. 2-1-Lord Vishnu was pleased by her courageous success and gave her the name “Ekadashi” as she was formed out of his own eleven senses. He announced that whosoever will observe fast for Goddess Ekadashi would get salvation (moksha) and would be free from all sins and evils. Since then many people celebrate this day. DEV DEEPAWALI & GANGA MAHOTSAV;--- 1-Ganga Mahotsav and Dev Deepawali are popular festivals celebrated in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh after Diwali. The ghats on the riverfront of the holy Ganges are lit up and everyone keeps earthen lamps outside their house. Oil lamps are set afloat the river and firecrackers are burst at night. 2- Ganga Mahotsav: This is a 5-day festival, starting from Prabodhani Ekadashi to Kartik Poornima . It is believed that the holy Ganga nourishes Varanasi since ages, and in order to honor the river, Ganga Mahotsav is celebrated every year. The festival helps preserve the importance of Varanasi as the religious, cultural and traditional capital of India. Tourists flock the place during this time, and they get to see the presentation of classical Indian dance and music. Great maestros perform at the festival. 3-Dev Deepawali:-- The Diwali of Gods or Festival of lights of the Gods is celebrated on Kartka Pournima (full moon of the Hindu month of Kartika) in Varanasi. On this occasion, the ghats are completely lighted with diyas and flocked by tourists and pilgrims. It is believed that Gods descend to Earth on this day. Another myth suggests that, on this day, the demon Tripurasur was killed by the Gods, and hence the name, Dev Deepawali, the day the Gods won victory. The program starts with Lord Ganesha’s prayer, after which 21 Brahmins and 41 girls chant the Vedic mantras. After the prayers, the Maha aarti is held at the Dashashwamedh Ghat, which is one grand celebration. ........SHIVOHAM......