23 January 2017 — Sat-tila Ekadashi
This Ekadashi occurs during the waning moon in the month of January/February. The glories of Sat-tila Ekadashi is described in Bhavisya Uttara Purana.
Once sage Dalbhya asked sage Pulastya, "O, respected brahaman, people are engaged in various sinful activities such as killing brahmins and sense gratification in this mortal world. Please, explain to me how can they be delivered from the helish condition as a result of their sinful activities".
Sage Pulastya replied, "O, most fortunate one! One should worship the Supreme Lord in a pure state of mind on the day of Ekadashi which occurs during the waning moon in the month of Januray/February. At the time of worship one should pray as follows. O, Lord Janardhan! O, most merciful Shri Krishna! You are the deliverer of the sinful people. Please be merciful to those who have drawned in the ocean of material existance. O, Supreme brahman! O, Supreme personality of Godhead! O, Lord of the universe! You please accept my worship with your consort Shrimati Laxmidevi".
Thereafter one should worship the brahmanas by giving them umbrella, cloth, shoes and pitcher filled with water in charity. According to ones capacity one should also give black cow and sesame seeds in charity to the best of the brahmanas. By giving sesame seeds in charity one can live in the heavenly planets for many many years.
One should bath in water mixed with sesame seed, smear sesame seed paste on his body, perform fire sacrifice with sesame seed, offer oblations to the forefather with the water mixed with sesame seeds, eat sesame seed and give sesame seed in charity on this Ekadashi. By doing so all ones sinful reactions will be distroyed. That is why the name of this Ekadashi is Sat-tila Ekadashi.
Lord Krishna narrated the following story to Narad Muni when he approched Krishna to hear the glories and results of observing Sat-tila Ekadashi.
"An the ancient time there lived a female brahamani. She is strictly followed the vow of celibacy and engaged in worshiping the Lord. By constantly observing various vows in the course of her worship she gradually became weak and skinny. Although she gave charity to the poor brahmins and unmarried girls but she never pleased the brahmins and demigods by giving food grains in charity. So I consider that although the body of the brahmani became weak on account of performing many severe vows yet she is a purified soul. Morever she has not given any food grains in charity to the hungry people.
O, best of the brahmanas! In order to test this brahmani I took the form of a mandicant and personaly appeared in this mortal world. I took a begging pot in my hands and approached the house of that brahamani for begging alms. The brahmani said, "O, brahmin! Please, tell me the truth from were have you come". I pretended as if I have not heard anything and beged for the alms again. She became angry at this and took a handful of clay and put it in my beging pot. Thereafter I returned to my abode.
That asetic brahmani as a result of observing severe vows also returned to my abode. Although she got a beautiful house but due to offering me clay in charity she had no food grains or wealth in her house. O brahmin! When she entered that house she did not find anything and gradually due to lack of wealth she became restless. Thereafter she approached me in an angry mood and said, ‘O, Janardhan! I have undergone severe austerities, vows and worship lord Vishnu adequately. Yet why am I breft of foodgrains and wealth?"
Then I said, "O, brahmani! As you have come here from the material world now please go back to your house. When out of curiouscity the wives of the demigods will come to your house for darshan then you should inquire from them about the glories of Sat-tila Ekadashi. Do not open the door until they finish the narration". After hearing my statement the brahmani returned home.
One day when the brahmani was siting in her room closing the door from inside at that time some wives of the demigods came there and said, "O, beautiful one! We have come here for darshan, please, open the door". The brahmani replied, 'If you want to see me then please explain to me the importance, piety and glories of Sat-tila Ekadashi before I open the door". Then one of the wives of the demigod narrated the glories of this Ekadashi. After hearing the narration the brahmani became satisfied and opened the door. The wives of the demigods became pleased by seeing the brahmani.
Under the instruction of these demigoddessess the brahmani observed the vow of Sat-tila Ekadashi. Thereafter she became beautiful, effulgent and became the proprieter of sufficient foodgrain, wealth and gold. However no one should observe this Ekadashi being controled by greed. By following this Ekadashi once misfortune and poverty are distroyed. If one donates sesame seeds on this day then all his sinful reaction are vanquished".
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