Karthik Purnima 2020

Karthik Purnima is celebrated by Hindus, Sikhs, and Jains all over India. It is the fifteenth lunar day or the full moon day of the auspicious Karthika month of the Hindu lunar calendar. Karthik Purnima is known to many as Tripura Purnima, Tripurari Purnima, Purnimasi, Pournami, and Deva–Diwali. Towards the South of India and Sri Lanka, a related festival called Karthika Deepam is celebrated on a different date. This month comes across as extra special since it is the only month in the calendar that is dedicated to the worship of both Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva. On this day, being an early bird would come in handy as finding space in temples will be next to impossible. Devotees throng temples of both deities to seek blessings on this auspicious day.

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When is Karthik Purnima 2020?

Karthik Purnima Dates 2020

Karthik Purnima Tithi Begins – 12:47 PM on Nov 29, 2020

Karthik Purnima Tithi Ends – 02:59 PM on Nov 30, 2020

Significance of Karthik Purnima 2020

The magic of Karthik Purnima lies in the stories associated with it, and there are quite a few. 

One is associated with the first incarnation of Lord Vishnu as Matsya or Matsyavataram, who took the form of a giant fish on this day to save the first man, Manu from a great deluge. 

  • DEV DIWALI – Dev Diwali falls on Sunday, 29 November 2020

Another is associated with Lord Shiva, when he in his form as Tripurantaka, put an end to the demon king Tripurasura on this auspicious day. It is believed that the gods celebrated by lighting zillions of diyas in heaven. It was a festival of illumination called Deva-Diwali, the Diwali of the gods. People of Varanasi celebrate this festival by lighting diyas in their houses and around the banks of the river. Lamps are lit near the linga in the temple of Lord Shiva. Wicks are lit and placed on floats made from the stem of the banana tree and set afloat on the river. The tulsi plant is also adorned with diyas. All this is a pure feast for the eyes. 

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  • TULSI VIVAH – Tulsi Vivah falls on Thursday, 26 November 2020.

Tulsi Vivah is about performing the marriage between the two divinities-goddess Tulsi and Lord Vishnu, by strictly following Vedic rituals. This story takes us back to a time when the Tulsi plant was a woman named Vrinda (an incarnate of Goddess Lakshmi) who was married to an Asura king named Jalandhar. King Jalandhar was invincible, owing to the devotion that his wife Vrinda had to Lord Vishnu. With time, even Lord Shiva could not defeat King Jalandhar. So he requested Lord Vishnu—the preserver, for a solution. In response, Vishnu disguised himself as King Jalandhar and tricked Vrinda by touching her. When she realized that it was not her husband but Lord Vishnu, her chastity was questioned, which caused Jalandhar to lose his power and he was killed by Lord Shiva. Overcome with emotions, Vrinda cursed Vishnu which caused him to become shaligram (a black fossil) and be separated from his wife, Lakshmi. Vrinda then drowned herself in the ocean. The gods transferred her soul to a plant, which was subsequently called Tulsi. As per a blessing, Vishnu in the form of shaligram married Tulsi on Prabodhini Ekadashi. Ever since it is considered auspicious to conduct Tulsi Vivah on the day of Ekadashi. Lord Vishnu promised never to eat food unless there was a tulsi leaf in it. To this day, all Prasada is offered with a tulsi leaf to Lord Vishnu.

  • BOITA BANDANA meaning ‘sanctifying of boats’. The Boita Bandana ritual widely recognizes the fame of Odisha’s (former Kalinga) maritime heritage on the day of Karthika Purnima. Earlier, the daring seafaring merchants, also known as ‘Saadhabas’ of Kalinga used to set off to the seas at pre-dawn of Karthik Purnima, this being the full moon day of the month of Karthik. This particular time was preferred since the waters of Karthika used to be much calmer. These merchants used to sail the high seas in boats to transact trade with the merchants of Bali. The women of the community used to give them a hearty see off by singing “aa ka ma boi” which symbolizes three Odia months – Aswina, Kartika, and Margashira. After they set off, the women would spend days praying for the safety of their men. Today, the day they bid farewell to the seafarers is celebrated as Boita Bandana, which means sanctifying of boats. People rise early, bathe, and visit temples. They sing songs early in the morning to mark the occasion. Miniature boats of different shapes and sizes made from paper and banana stem carrying diyas, flowers, beetle leaves, milk, supari, and coins are then set afloat on water bodies, to mark the rich maritime legacy of ancient Odisha. A month-long fast “Habisha” is undertaken, which means having food only once in the afternoon and it ends with the ancient festival that takes place on the morning of Karthika Purnima. 

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Karthik Purnima 2020 Rituals

Karthik Purnima in JAINISM

As far as Jains are concerned, Karthik Purnima is a very promising day for them. Jains celebrate this day by flocking to the foothills of Shatrunjay hills in Palitana on this day to undertake the Shri Shantrunjay Theerth Yatra. This is considered a great accomplishment for a Jain devotee, as it covers 216kms of rough mountainous terrain on foot to worship Lord Adinath atop the hill. This yatra is possible only on Karthik Purnima when the hills are thrown open to the devotees after remaining close for four months of Chaturmas. As they were kept away from worshipping their Lord, the first day usually sees the largest number of devotees. According to Jain texts, countless sadhus and sadhvis have attained salvation on these hills. They believe that Adinath, their first Tirthankara, sanctified the mountains by visiting it to deliver his first sermon.

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Karthik Purnima in  SIKHISM

For the Sikhs in general, they are quite clear about any month, day, or the moment a person remembers the Divine is considered auspicious. According to the Nanakshahi (Sikh) calendar, Guru Nanak was born on 1 Vaisakh, 14 April. It was a full moon night. Certain Hindus and other followers of Guru Nanak’s philosophy choose to celebrate this festival on Karthik Purnima according to Bikrami (Hindu) calendar. Hence they celebrate Karthik Purnima as Gurupurab or Prakash Parva that is Guru Nanak Jayanthi worldwide.

RITUALS of Karthik Purnima in Hinduism

Devotees take a ritualistic bath or ‘Nadi Snaan’ at the rivers. A day-long fast is observed in the name of Lord Shiva. Rudra abhisheka is performed by bathing the deity in milk and honey. In the name of Lord Vishnu, the Satya Naryana Vrat is performed. 

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According to Hindu scriptures,

  • It is mandatory to take a ritual bath in the river Ganges on this day.
  • After a set of rituals, a procession is undertaken wherein idols and images of Lord Shiva are carried to the river to immerse them after worship
  • Diyas and earthen lamps are lit to celebrate the victory of Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva.
  • A special Prasad called ‘Annakutta’ is offered to the deities.
  • Devotees indulge themselves in the ritual of ‘Bhandara’ and ‘Anna Daan’ to gain immovable property and prosperity throughout the year.

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