31 March 2019 — Papamocani Ekadashi
The glories of Papamocani Ekadashi is discribed in Bhavisottara Purana in the conversation between Lord Krishna and Maharaj Yudhisthira.
Once Maharaj Yudhisthira asked Lord Krishna, "My dear Lord Krishna, you have already explained the glories of Amalaki Ekadashi. Now, please, discribe the Ekadashi, which occures during the wanning moon in the month of March/April. What is the name of this Ekadashi? Also discribe to me the proceedure for observing this Ekadashi and its results".
Lord Krishna replied, "O best of Kings! The name of this Ekadashi is Papamocani. Now, please, hear its glories as I discribe to you.
Long, long ago the glories of this Ekadashi was spoken by the Sage Lomasa to King Mandata. This Papamocani Ekadashi occures during the wanning moon in the month of March/April. This Ekadashi takes away all ones sinful reactions, distroyes ones ghostly condition of life and awards one eight kinds of mystic perfections.
Sage Lomasa said, ‘'In the ancient time Kubera, the treasurer of the demigods, had a beautiful forest of flowers called Caitraratha, where the weather was pleasent as a result of ever spring.
The heavenly danceing girls such as gandharvas and kinnaras enjoyed various sports there. Demigods headed by Indra used to come there and enjoyed various exchanges. In that forest a great sage named Medhavi, who was a staunch devotee of Lord Shiva, was engaged in performing austerity.
The Apsaras or the heavenly dancing girls tried to disturb the sage in various ways. Among the Apsaras one famous Apsara named Manju Ghosa devised a means to captivate the mind of the sage.
Due to fear of the sage Manju Ghosa built a cottage a little away from the ashrama of the sage and began to sing in a sweet voice accompanied with the musical instrument Bina. On seeing Manju Ghosa, who applied sandal wood pulp on her body wore a fragrent flower garland and was engaged in singing sweetly, even the cupid who is an enemy of Lord Shiva tried to conquer the sage, who was the devotee of Lord Shiva.
Since Lord Shiva burnt the cupid to ashes therefore remembering his previous enemity the cupid, in order to take revange enterd in to the body of the sage.
At that time sage Medhavi, who wore a white sacred thread on his body and lived in the ashrama of Chyavana Risi, appeared as the second cupid.
The lusty Manju Ghosa slowly came before the sage. The sage Medhavi also became overwhelmed by lust and forgot his worshipable lord. He gave up the practice of devotional service and became so much intoxicated in relishing the association of the women that he even lost the sence of discriminating between day and night. In this way sage Medhavi spend many years in enjoying lusty activities.
Thereafter when Manju Ghosa saw that the sage has fallen down from his position, she decided to return to the heavenly planet. She said to sage Medhavi, who was engaged in conjugal affair, "O, great sage! Now, please, give me permission so that I can return home".
Then sage Medhavi replied, "O, beautiful women! You have come to me only in the evening, stay here tonight and you can return in the morning".
On hearing these words of the sage Manju Ghosa became frightened and continued to live with him for a few more years. In this way although Manju Ghosa lived with a sage for fifty seven years nine months and three days yet it appeared to be only half of a night to the sage.
Then Manju Ghosa again asked for the permission from the sage to return home, but the sage said, "O, beautiful one! Please hear my words. This is only morning, please, wait till I finish my morning rituals". Then the apsara smiled and said to the sage with amazement, "O, great sage! How long it will take to complete your moring rituals? Has it not finished yet? You have spent many years in enjoying my association. Therefore, please, consider the actual value of the time".
On hearing the words of the apsara, the sage came to his senses and after carefully calculating the time he said, "Alas! O, beautiful one! I have simply wasted long fifty-seven years of my valuable time. You have ruined everything and spoiled all my austerities". The eyes of the sage filled with tears and his entire body began to tremble. Sage Medhavi cursed Manju Ghosa in the following words, "You have behaved with me like a witch, therefore, you will immediately become a witch. O, sinful unchast Lady! Shame on you'.
After being cursed by the sage in this way, Manju Ghosa humbly said to the sage, "O, best of the brahmins! Please, withdraw your heavy curse. I have spent many years in your company. O, my lord, for this reason I am a fit candidate for your forgiveness, please be merciful to me".
The sage replied, "O, gentle lady! What will I do now? You have distroyed my entire wealth of austerity, still I am telling you the proceedure from getting freed from this curse. The Ekadashi, which occures during the wanning moon in the month of March/April, which called Papamocani, and is capable of distroying all ones sinful reactions. If you follow this Ekadashi strictly and faithfully then your ghostly condition of life will be vanquished'.
After speaking these words, sage Medhavi returned to the ashrama of his father sage Chyavana. As soon as sage Chyavana saw his fallen son, he became extremely unhappy and said, "Alas! Alas! O, my son, what have you done? You have ruined yourself. You should not have spoiled your entire treasury of austerity simply being captivated by an ordinary lady sage Medhavi replied O respected father! Due to misfortune I have committed great sins in the association of an apsara".
"Therefore, please, instruct me regarding the attonment of my sinful reactions".
On hearing the pathetic words of his repentent son, sage Chyavana said, "O, my son! By observing Papamocani Ekadashi, which falls during the wanning moon in the month of March/ April all ones sinful reactions are completely distroyed. Therefore you should observe this Ekadashi".
On hearing these kind words of his father, sage Medhavi exibited special enthusiasam in observing this Ekadashi. By the influence of this Ekadashi all the sinful reactions of sage Medhavi were distroyed and he became a very pious. Meanwhile Manju Ghosa also observed this auspicious Papamocani Ekadashi and became liberated from the ghostly condition of life. She then regained her divine form and return to heaven".
After narrating this story to king Mandata, sage Lomosa concluded as follows, "My dear king, just by observing this Papamocani Ekadashi all ones sinful reaction are automatically distroyed. By hearing or reading the glories of this Ekadashi one achives the result of donating one thousand cows. By observing this Ekadashi all kinds of sinful reactions resulting from a killing a brahmin, killing an embryo, drinking wine and associating with ones guru’s wife are totally uprooted. The purport is that since this sacred Ekadashi is all auspicious and distroyer of all sins everyone should strictly observe this Ekadashi".
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