Shattila Ekadashi is observed on the 11th day of the Krishna Paksha during the month of ‘Magh’ in the Hindi calendar. In the Gregorian calendar, the date falls during the month of January and also called Shat-Tila Ekadashi. In the northern regions of India, this Ekadashi is celebrated during the Hindu month of ‘Magh’ while in some states, it is observed during the ‘Paush’ month of the Hindu calendar. This Ekadashi is also dedicated to worshipping Lord Vishnu and devotees who observe a fast on this day can get relief from their miseries and misfortunes.
Shattila Ekadashi Vrat Story
There was a rich lady who used to do a lot of charity work for the needy and poor. She distributed clothes, money, valuables and many other useful things except for the food. It was believed that distributing food is the higher form of charities. Therefore, Lord Krishna decided to make her realize this fact. He appeared in the form of a beggar and approached the rich lady begging her for food. The lady was unwilling to give food in alms to the beggar and drive him away.
When the beggar asked for food, she insulted him by dropping a ball of clay in his begging bowl. The beggar thanked her and left the scene. As the rich lady entered back into the house, she was astonished shocked to see that all the food in the home had turned into clay. Despite her wealth, she was not able to eat anything as whatever she tries to eat turned into clay.
The health of the lady started deteriorating each day due to hunger. She prayed day to Lord Krishna to save her. Krishna appeared in her dream made her realized that since she insulted the beggar with the ball of clay, she was the one inviting this misfortune. The Lord enjoined the lady to donate food to the poor and observe this vrat which gave her back what she lost. The lady was happy thereafter and started spending more on donating food to the needy and poor.
Shattila Ekadashi Vrat
The devotee observing the Shattila Ekadashi vrat must take bath in the morning, decorate the altar, install the picture or idol of Krishna and Vishnu and offer pujas combined with the chanting of Vishnu Sahasranam of the names of Krishna. Offer tulsi water, coconut, flowers, incense, fruits, and Prasad to the Lord and keep remembering the Lord throughout the day. Repeat the puja on the next day morning during Dwadashi and conclude the fast after partaking the Prasad.
The fasting commences during the dawn on Ekadashi day and extends till the morning of Dwadashi. The fast is broken during parana on the Dwadashi day after doing puja to Lord Vishnu. The fast consists of not eating anything. Some devotees consume sesame seeds alone on this day. If complete fast is not possible, then the devotees can take milk and fruits.
Rituals during Shattila Ekadashi
On the day of Shattila Ekadashi, there is the great significance of taking a bath with water that is mixed with sesame seeds. Devotees also consume ‘til’ on Shat Tila Ekadashi. On this day, devotees must only have spiritual thoughts and do not let greed, lust, and anger take over their thoughts.
Devotees keep a religious fast on Shattila Ekadashi and refrain from eating or drinking all day long. If however, you are unable to keep complete fast, partial fasting is also allowed. This is so because affection to Lord is more significant than strict fasting rules. However, there are specific foods that all must avoid on the day of Ekadashi like grains, rice, and pulses.
Lord Vishnu is the main deity on Shattila Ekadashi. The statue of the lord is bathed in Panchamrit, to which sesame seeds should definitely be mixed. Later various offerings are made to please Lord Vishnu.
On Shattila Ekadashi, devotees stay awake all night and chant Lord Vishnu’s name with immense devotion and perseverance. In some places, devotees also organize yagna on this revered day in which sesame seed preparations constitute an important ingredient.
Shattila Ekadashi Vrat Benefits
If one observes the Shattila Ekadashi vrat with full devotion and faith. This can bless the devotee with a lot of prosperity, wealth and good health in all his births. Devotees should donate food, valuables, clothes, and money to the poor on this day can present great merits. This vrat shall ensure that the devotee has prosperous food and shall never run.
Ekadashi fasting is suggested for staunch devotees who seek love and blessings of Lord Vishnu.
We at Askganesha wish everyone a very auspicious Shattila Ekadashi.Shattila Ekadashi: Praying and fasting for Lord Vishnu by Astrologer Amit