Ekadashi fast is mainly dedicated to Lord Vishnu. In a year there come 24 Ekadashi, which falls twice in a month; first one on 11th day of Shukla Paksh (bright lunar fortnight) and second one on 11th day of Krishna Paksh (dark lunar fortnight). Lord Vishnu’s devotees keep fast on the day of Ekadashi to get his blessings.
Vijaya Ekadashi gives success and victory to the devotees. It is to believe that keeping fast on Ekadashi guides you the true pathway of life cycle. Disciples fast on this day to get the blessings of Lord Vishnu. Vijaya Ekadashi is also known as Pankoddhar Ekadashi in Orissa.
When is it observed?
Vijaya Ekadashi is observed on the eleventh day of lunar fortnight of Krishna Paksh in Falgun Month as per the traditional Hindu lunar calendar. It is celebrated religiously on Wednesday, 22nd February 2017.
According to mythological evidences the importance of this Ekadashi was found in the Bhavishyotara Purana which was narrated by Lord Krishna to Yudhishtir and also was narrated to Narada by Lord Brahma.
It is believed that Lord Rama observed Vijaya Ekadashi guided by Saint Bakadalabhya to cross the ocean to reach Lanka to save his consort Sita from Ravana. As suggested and advised, Lord Rama observed the fast and hence, found a way to cross the ocean and demolished the evil King Ravana who had kidnapped Sita Devi and got Victory. Since then, the day of Vijaya Ekadashi came into being and is observed with utmost zeal and enthusiasm.
As per the name, Vijaya Ekadashi gives success and victory to a person in difficult circumstances of life. It is believed that even for Lord Rama to get Victory had to observe Vijaya Ekadashi to cross the ocean to reach Lanka and defeated Ravana. People who would like to attain salvation (moksha) by reaching the abode of Lord Vishnu are known to observe this fast with a lot of respect and devotion.
Rituals and Celebrations
Many devotees throng temples in order to offer their sacred prayers to the Lord Vishnu with utmost respect. People observe fast on this Ekadashi to remove obstacles from their life, get blessed with prosperous life and to get Victory in all the fields of life. Devotees observe this fast by taking one meal or waterless and also do not eat rice, onion and garlic on this fast.
Parana Muhurat is the time when Vijaya Ekadashi Vrat is done. It is said to be auspicious to break the fast within Dwadashi Tithi (twelfth day).