Saphala Ekadashi 2022

Ekadashi is the 11th day of the phase of the Moon. All Ekadashis are considered holy days dedicated to the worship of Lord Vishnu. The Saphala Ekadashi falls during the Krishna Paksha or the waning phase of the Moon in the month of ‘Pausa’. This corresponds to December/January in the Gregorian calendar. Saphala Ekadashi in 2021 falls on December 30. So it is the last Ekadashi of this year, and believers can take this vrat before entering the New Year.

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Saphala Ekadashi, also known as ‘Pausa Krishna Ekadashi’, is dedicated to Lord Vishnu like all other Ekadashi days. Devotees worship Lord Krishna, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu, with great zeal and enthusiasm on this day. Saphala Ekadashi is believed to be superior to other Ekadashi days. It frees the person from all the sins in life. The word ‘saphala’ in the Hindi language means succeeding or prosper. It is believed that observing vrat during the Saphala Ekadashi day will bring upon the devotee immense happiness and success in life. Traditionally, the Ekadashi days are seen as days where the person’s bodily needs take a second seat to the person’s spiritual needs. Saphala Ekadashi day holds immense significance for Vaishnavism followers. On this day, special pujas are observed in Lord Krishna temples across India.

Saphala Ekadashi Rituals

On the day of Saphala, Ekadashi devotees offer prayers to Lord Krishna and spend the day in his worship. The idol of Sri Krishna is given a sacred bath and adorned with clothes and ornaments. Various kinds of fruits and flowers are offered to please the Lord. It is customary to light a ghee lamp or Diya in front of the idol of Lord Krishna to invoke his blessings. Observing Saphala Ekadashi vrat is the most important ritual of Saphala Ekadashi. Starting from the dawn of the Ekadashi day, the vrat continues till the next morning. While some devotees maintain strict fasting, some undergo partial fasting. In strict fasting, the devotee eats no food at all during the duration of vrat.

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In contrast, certain fruits and dairy products are consumed in partial fasting. The food must be satvik food. Partial fasting is observed by those who cannot undergo strict fasting due to health reasons. The observer of the Saphala Ekadashi should spend the day engaging in the worship of Lord Krishna. In the evening, the devotee can light diyas in the temple of Lord Krishna. Sleeping during the night on the eve of Ekadashi is also prohibited. Offering charity on Saphala Ekadashi day is considered highly beneficial. It can be in the form of food, money, clothes, or anything needed in day-to-day life. Avoid sleeping in a bed during Ekadashi and try sleeping on the ground. Do not consume meat, intoxicants, garlic and onion on Ekadashi day. Abstain from brushing teeth in the morning of Ekadashi day. Also, do not pluck leaves or fruits from any tree or plant as it is considered inauspicious.

Saphala Ekadashi Significance

The importance of Saphala Ekadashi is stated in the ‘Brahmanda Purana’ as a discussion between King Yudhishthira and Lord Krishna. It is believed that no form of sacrifice or visiting any pilgrimages is more meritorious than performing the Saphala Ekadashi vrat. According to the scriptures, doing Rajasuya Yagas and Ashvamedha Yagas is not as beneficial as observing a fast on Saphala Ekadashi. The observer of this sacred vrat will receive unbounded fame and victories in life and seek salvation or ‘moksha’. The power of the Saphala Ekadashi is such that its observer will be freed from the continuous cycle of birth and death and will take residence in the supreme abode of Lord Vishnu, known as ‘Vaikunth’. Saphala Ekadashi day is described as transforming lousy luck into a rewarding fortune. It has the power to fulfil desires and dreams. Besides, it also gives satisfaction and inner peace to the observer.

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Saphala Ekadashi Vrat Katha

King Mahishmat, who ruled a kingdom called Champavati, had five sons, the eldest of whom was Lumbaka. Prince Lumbaka was wild, irresponsible and ill-mannered. He was constantly questioning the authority of Lord Vishnu and was involved in lots of sinful activities. When Lumbaka’s atrocities crossed new limits, he was thrown out of the kingdom by the king. However, Lumbaka continued with his immoral behaviour and plundered the wealth of poor villagers. Finally, he was caught red-handed by the king’s men.

But, he was released and pardoned for the crime as he was still a prince. Lumbaka spent days and nights living under a banyan tree. He would kill animals and eat raw meat. But slowly, the loneliness and melancholy started to weigh on his conscience. Lumbaka started to introspect and realized how his conduct/behaviour and habits ruined his life. He repented his sins and felt ashamed of his wrongdoings. Then, on the Saphala Ekadashi day, Lumbaka fell ill. He could not sleep during the night and eat anything during the day. Thus, unknowingly, Lumbaka undertook the Saphala Ekadasi Vrat. The following day, Lumbaka felt good, and he went into the forest, collected some fruits, and then offered the fruits to Lord Vishnu. This incident completely transformed the life of Lumbaka.

The next day, he started his life anew and returned to his kingdom. After learning about Lumbaka’s transformation, the king anointed him as his successor. Thus, Lumbaka reaped the fruits of the vrat that he unknowingly observed on the Ekadashi Tithi. Lumbaka ruled for many years. When he died, he was given a place in Vaikunth (abode of Lord Vishnu).

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