Search This Blog

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Akshaya Tritiya

1] Akshaya Tritiya is an occasion meant to do charity and share what you have with others religiously

The word "Akshaya" means the never diminishing in Sanskrit and the day is believed to bring good luck and success. It is believed that if you do a charity on this day you will be blessed and will receive blessings many fold. Nowadays jewellers have turned the purity into a marketing gimmick. The day is particularly considered auspicious for starting new ventures, especially ventures to share something with others be it your products or services or knowledge. It signifies a ancient wisdom the more you share the more you have . The legend states that any venture initiated on the auspicious day of Akshaya Tritiya shall continue to grow and bring prosperity. Hence, it is normal to see many of the new ventures, like starting a business, ground breaking for construction on the Akshaya Tritiya.
2] Although there are 3 and half 'Muhurats' mentioned in Hindu astrology and almanac where every second of the day is auspicious and one do not need to look for 'Muhurat'. These Muhurats are Gudi Padva [ new year day when you start new ventures to share something with the society around] Akshay Tritiya [ doing charity by sharing what you have to help others], Dashahara [sharing knowledge /imparting knowledge to other hence the practice of starting new educational courses etc] and Bali Pratipda. Akshay Tritiya is one of them thus the day is ideal to begin new ventures. Only Bali Pratipda's half day is auspicious. It is said that if this date falls on Monday under Rohini Nachtra the fast is considered very fruitful. This date starts from Madhyam to Pradosh Kal.
3] In “Bhavishyothara Purana, we find the following sloka that hails the significance of this day.

“Snanam daanam thapo homa:
Swadhyaya: pithru tharppanam
Yadasyam kriyathe Kinchit
sarvam syaththadihaksyam
Aadow krithayugasyeyam
yugadisthena kathyate
Asyam thithow kshaya
mupaithi hritham na daththam
thenakshya cha muhibhi:
Kaithaksha athritheeya”
(The grace of performing homas, chanting of mantras, observance of penance, bathing in holy river, charity, rice for pleasing ancestors yield results that never get lost, especially on Akshaya Tritiya, which is the beginning of Kritha Yuga.)
The day of Akshaya Tritiya is connected with Lord Parasurama’s story also. It is said to be his birthday. Hence, Parasurama puja is performed on this day. The day is the favourite of the Devas as well. A devotee is supposed to perform homa with barley and submit it to Lord Vishnu. Brahmanandapuranam recommends worshipping Lord Shiva, his abode Kailasa, Goddess Ganga, Bhageeratha and taking a holy bath in the river Ganga on this day.
Akshaya Tritiya is considered to be the day when Goddess Madhura Meenakshi and Lord Sundaresa got married. Hence, couples who get married on this day are blessed with gracefulness and bright prospects. The effects of holy acts committed on this day are believed to last throughout the year.
Draupadi got the Akshayapathra (the ever full vessel) on this day. Sage Sankaracharya brought down a shower of gold gooseberries on this day. Thus, the day of Akshaya Tritiya is observed all over India on several grounds, but at the core of it is the belief that truth is never destroyed.” By — Dr Venganoor Balakrishnan is the author of Thaliyola, a book on Hindu beliefs and rituals. He has also written books on the Vedas and Upanishads. The author can be reached at drvenganoor@
4] According to Hindu mythology, Akshay Tritiiya was the day when Veda Vyasa started dictating the epic Mahabharata to Ganesha, the elephant-headed god of wisdom and obstacle removal.
6] It is also traditionally observed as the birthday of Parashurama, the sixth incarnation of god Vishnu. The Puranic scriptures speak about how he reclaimed the land from the sea.
7] Goa and Konkan regions, even today, are referred to as Parusurama Kshetra. Akshaya Tritiya, the third day of the bright-half of the lunar month of Vaisakha is considered as one of the most sacred days of the year.
8] In Orissa on Akshay Tritiya farmers start ploughing their land and construction of chariots for Rath Yatra begins at Puri.
The day is generally observed by fasting and worship Lord Vasudeva with rice grains. A dip in the river Ganges on this day is considered to be very auspicious.
9 ] The Vedic scriptures [where?] say that knowledge gained or charity done on this day is very fruitful. It is considered to be very lucky day to start new business or venture.
Fasts are kept on this day and pujas are performed. In charity, fan, rice, salt, ghee, sugar, vegetables, tamarind, fruit, clothes, are given. Vishnu is worshipped on this day. Tulsi water is sprinkled in the nearby are of the idol while performing aarti.
In Bengal, on the day of the Akshay Tritiiya, "HalKhata" - a ceremony to start the new audit book is performed - with the worship of Ganeshaand goddess Lakshmi. Bengalis perform many rites and rituals on this day.
This day is also most auspicious day for the Jat farming community. Early morning, a male member of Jat family goes to field with shovel. All the animals and birds encountered on the way to the field indicates omen and predictions for rains and crops. Akshay Tritiiya is also an occasion for weddings, which are conducted in mass marriage ceremonies. It is considered an unboojha muhurat.
10] It is believed that god Kubera, the treasurer of the gods, is the richest deity. Lakshmi Tantram says that even Kubera will pray to goddess Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and consort of Vishnu, on this day. On this day, a day-long Kubera Lakshmi Puja is performed in which an image of Lakshmi is worshipped along with Sudarsana Kubera Yantra, symbolising Kubera.
11] In Mahabharath Lord Krishna told Yudhishtir that dear king all kinds of charity and worships done on Akshay Tritiya never diminish. Therefore our saints and monks named it Akshay Tritiya.

Today, the positive waves of lord Brahmaji and SriVishannu entered into the Earth from Paradise. So the purity of the Earth is enhanced by 10 percent on Akshay Tritiya. So who-so-ever worship their God or Goddess on Akshay Tritiya receives kind blessings with peace and prosperity. The charity of the day never diminishes. Due to the impact of fast of Akshay Tritiya virtues of a man increases in multiple folds.

12] According to the Puranas, this day marks the beginning of the Treta Yug and Sat Yug. Akshay Tritiya also marked the great significance of bath in Ganga. One should donate hand-fan, rise, sugar, Ghee, salt, tamarind, clothes etc. The charity of the day never diminishes.

13] The day also marks the opening of doors of Badrinath or one can also offer 'Bhog' of wet pulses and mishri to lord Badrinath.

14] Devotee could also take a rare view of feet of lord Shrivigrah at Shri Bakebihari Mandir in Vrindavan. Haygreeve also took avatar on Akshay Tritiya. The birthday of Parashurama, the sixth incarnation of Vishnu falls on this day. So the day is also marked as a 'Parashuram Avataran Diwas'or 'Parashuram Jayanti'. The tradition of donating sugar and sattu to Brahmins is also in practice on Akshay Tritiya.

15] The legend behind Akshaya Tritiya

One day King Yudhisthira asked Sri Krishna- Oh dear God! I am very eager to know about Akshaya Tritiya. So please explain me the significance of Akshaya Tritiya. Lord Sri Krishna replied- Dear King! Akhaya Tritiya is a very sacred date. One who observes the bathe before afternoon, jap, tap, havan, swadhyaya, pritra-tarpan and charity on this day got imperishable virtues.

Oh Yudhisthira! There was a Vaishya named Mahahdev who was very poor, theist, virtuous and worshiper of cow, dev and brahmins. He was so worried due to his big family. He came to know the importance of Akshaya Tritiya from a pundit.

Mahadev followed the procedure of the fast. He took holy dip in the Ganga followed by offering to forefathers and deities. He also donated laddus of coconut, wheat, barley, watch, kalash, hand-fan, umbrella, rice, lentils, salt, Ghee, sugar, clothes, vegetables, tamarind, fruits, sattu, cucumber, watermelon and alms.

Mahadev was denied by his wife and relatives. He was also suffering from diseases due to his old age. But he was not deterred from his dharma and charity. And due to the impact of his fast he became the king of Kushavati Nagari
16] Mythologically speaking, Kubera, the treasurer in Heaven received his wealth on this day from Siva. It is on this day Lord Siva blessed Goddess Lakshmi with wealth. In fact Lord Siva made Kubera as Lord of wealth and Lakshmi as Goddess of wealth. Kubera worshiped Lord Siva in the temple at Sivapuram. Buried underneath the land surrounding the temple are thousands of Sivalingams. Just by stepping on the ground here, or by worshiping here, your bad money karma will be dissolved, they say.
17] According to another legend, the "Akshaya bowl" which creates unlimited food was given to the great king Yudhishtira on this day. This event happened at the Thirumanthurai temple. Also on this day Avatars (Gods incarnation on the earth plane) were blessed to rule their countries. They received wealth on this day. Two people were born on this 3rd moon. One is Parasurama, the warrior Brahmin who destroyed all his enemies and then became a sage. The second one was Annapurani, a special form of Parvati who feeds the hungry. Annapurani fed Siva on this day. Siva disguised himself as a beggar (for Bikshaatana) and approached Annapurani for food. Siva’s begging is a symbolic act. He is the lord of the Universe. Why should he beg? The answer is he begs for all his beggars (the impoverished lots, like us!!).
18] Also as per another legend connected with Arasar Koil, Lord Ganesha seems to have gifted the Akshaya bowl (divine vessel of inexhaustible food) to Garuda (the Vehicle of lord Vishnu). Garuda worshiped Lakshmi who happens to reside in this temple and Goddess Lakshmi offered this Akshaya bowl in gold to Garuda. Garuda while worshiping Lord Surya Narayana (the Sun God) offered food to the deity in this golden Akshaya bowl. All the above incidences happened in Arasar Koil temple only in the previous Yugas, mind you.
In this temple, Lord Ganesha is in front of Goddess Mahalakshmi' s Sanctum and is known as Akshaya Vinayakar. He is also known as Sri Lakshmi Ganapathy. Since it was Lord Siva who on this day bestowed Kubera as the Lord and Lakshmi as the Goddess of wealth, worshiping Lord Siva on this day and chanting the mantra, “Om Namah Sivaaya” will bring in abundance and prosperity in one’s life. Let the Srivaishnavite's differ on this, and chant "SrimathE nArAyaNa namah: ".
19] Feeding the poor is the most important charitable act. Also donation of umbrellas and chapels (sandals) for poor children are recommended by some. Poojas and charity acts will yield good results on this special 3rd moon day, i.e.3th day from new-moon day known as Tritiya, a day for charity.
20] Buying of Gold and Jewellery items is certainly not listed in the Vedic scripts. These are all the ploy and gimmicks made by the vested interests to hard-sell their product to the gullible in the name of religious faith. Sadly purity, piety & all good have been commercialized. Sure, the industry related advertisements are making the general public crazy for buying. The only auspicious day to buy gold ornaments stated to be of Guru-Pushya day i.e. when Pushya nakshatra falls on any Thursday in any month. And certainly not on Akshaya Thrutheeyai day.
21] The homa, japa (chanting), prayer, theerthasnaana (taking bath in the holy river), donations and rites observed on this day yield never-ending grace. In Bhavishyothara Purana, it has been pointed out that fasting on this day and offering rice to Lord Vishnu will cure one of all the sins one has committed till that day. Puranas say that pujas performed on the day of Akshaya tritiya purged Baanasura, a mythical character, of all his sins and empowered him to resist the attacks of Devas.

No comments: