Category: Hindu holidays
Pausha Purnima Vrat is observed on the full moon day of the Paush month. This month is the 10th month in the Hindu calendar and the months of January – February in Gregorian calendar.
About of Purnima Vrat
Purnima and Pournami are respectively the North Indian and South Indian terms for Full Moon. It is the brightest phase of the Moon and represents the completion of a cycle. In every Hindu calendar, most of the Purnima day is associated with a significant festival of the month. Hence, over the twelve months in a year, the Purnima days mark twelve different festivals.
A Full Moon or Pournami is symbolic of various factors such as birth, rebirth, fullness, abundance, creation etc. There is a tradition among the devoted Hindus to observe Vrat or fasting on Pournami days. In general, the Purnima Vrats is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and the Mother Goddess. Observing a Purnima Vrat or Vratam is considered very auspicious and it can bestow lots of benefits to the devotee.
The Purnima fasting is observed either on Purnima day or on the day before Purnima i.e. on Chaturdashi (14th lunar day). It depends on the starting time of Purnima Tithi. Purnima fasting will be observed on Chaturdashi if the Purnima Tithi starts during the Madhyahna period on the previous day. Usually, a Pournami Vratam is observed from sunrise till the rising of the full Moon.
Significances of Purnima Day
Purnima or Full Moon has a lot of religious and scientific significances. As per the belief, many of the Gods such as Lord Vishnu’s Matsyavatar, Subrahmanya and Sri Buddha incarnated or took birth on Purnima day. The Pujas done on this day are said to have great merits and devotees conduct some exclusive pujas like Satya Narayan Puja. From the scientific point of view, the Purnima has some significant influences on our body and mind.
Some of the positive effects of the Purnima fasting include balancing of metabolism, increased endurance, controlling of acidity and cleansing of the digestive system. Depending on the various phases of the moon, the gravitational force exerted on our body will vary and it would affect the various physiological processes. Fasting on Pournami or Full Moon day would help to maintain the digestive system clean and healthy. Fasting, combined with pujas and prayers, can let the body and mind relax and find a balance. A dedicated observation of the Vrat helps to relieve all the pains and control the emotions.
Purnima Fasting Rules
In general, the devotees observing Purnima Vrat follow a full day fast and offers prayers to Lord Vishnu. The fasting begins at the sunrise on the Purnima day (occasionally on Chaturdashi) and ends at the rise of the full Moon in the evening.
– To observe Purnima Vrat, the devotees should wake up and take bath before sunrise.
– A strict fasting from sunrise to full Moon rise without consuming any food or water is recommended.
– Those who can’t observe such a strict fasting can have a single meal of fruits and milk.
– Cereals, pulses and salt should be strictly avoided.
– The devotee can end fasting after seeing the full Moon rise and offering the prayers.
– No special puja or offering to any deity is recommended. The devotee can worship and offer pujas as he likes.
Satya Narayan Vrat/Puja
The Satya Narayan Vrat/Puja is a ceremony dedicated to Lord Vishnu and is considered highly auspicious to perform on Pournami day. On the day of the Vrat, devotees clean their houses, decorate the entrance doorsteps with mango leaves and installs an idol or picture of Satya Narayan (Vishnu) on an altar. Two small-sized plantain trees will be tied at both ends of the altar and the idol or picture will be decorated with vermillion, sandal paste and garlands. The puja process includes invoking the blessings of Lord Ganesha and chanting of Vishnu Sahasranam. Tulsi, fruits, nuts, rice dishes, betel leaves, milk porridge etc. are offered and the puja ends with devotees performing Mangal Arati by waving camphor or ghee lamp in front of the altar. Performing this puja also enhances the effect of Purnima Vrat and helps the devotees to share the blessings with others.
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