Purnima of Ashwin Shukla Paksha is called Sharad Purnima. In the year 2012, Sharad Purnima will be on Monday 29th October. It is also known as Kojagiri and Ras Purnima Fast. This day, moon and Satya God is worshipped. Fast is observed and story is heard, on Purnima. It is noted, the ritual performed on this day is always successful.
In the third part of the day, fasting and performing Aarti of elephant gives favorable results. This day, moon is full with its 16 arts. In some areas, this fast is known as Kaumudi Purnima. A popular context related to this day is that, today lord Krishna created a Maharas with Gopis. It is belived that rays of moon shower Amrit, on this day. That is why, Kheer is prepared at kept under moonlight for the whole night and eaten in morning,on the next day.
Sharad Purnima Fast Method
This day, fast is observed and family God is worshipped. At night, Indra on Erawat elephant (white elephant) and Mahalakshmi are worshipped. Puja is performed by lighting lamps, incense sticks, flowers etc. This day, minimum of 100 lamps and maximum of 1 lakh lamps are lighted.
Next day lord Indra is worshiped. Brahmans are offered sugar mixed with ghee and Kheer. Additionally they are given Dhoti etc. clothes, lamps (if possible of gold) and donations. This fast is specially observed for getting Lakshmi (wealth). It is believed, lord Indra and Mata Lakshmi watch that who all are awake. Hence, person observing Jagran gets wealth.
This fast is chiefly observed by ladies. The ones observing fast, draw a Swastika on wooden stool and place an urn of water on it. A glass full of wheat and wheat is kept over it. 13 grains of wheat are taken in hand and the story of fast is heard.
The glass and money are given to the lady narrating the story by touching her feet. Ardhya of water is offered to the moon. After this, food is eaten. There is a tradition of gifting Kheer in temple, on this day. A watermelon is cut into two halves. also, any seasonal fruit and Kheer is kept in the moonlight.
Sharad Purnima Fast Story
A moneylender had two daughters. On of them used to complete the fast in a systematic manner and the other used to observe the fast but leave it incomplete. As a result, child born to the 2nd daughter always used to die. Tensed by this situation, the second daughter asked Pandits the reason behind it. Pandits told her that all this was happening because she used to leave the fasts incomplete. They asked her to observe the fast of Sharad Purnima to keep her child alive.
She laid her dead child on a bed and covered him with a cloth. Then, she called her sister and asked her to sit. As the clothes of her elder sister touched the baby, he came back to life. The elder sister scolded her and said that if by chance she would have sat on the baby, he could have died. The 2nd daughter of the moneylender said, “the baby was already dead. He got his life back on getting touched by your clothes.” From that time, tradition of observing the fast of Sharad Purnima is carried on.
This fast is observed for longevity of child and receiving wealth. This day, idol of goddess Lakshami is established and worshipped with Shodashopachara. After fasting for the whole day, 100 lamps of gold, silver and mud are lighted when moon is emerged. Bhajans are sung in the Jagran, at night. Next day morning, idol of Mata Lakshami is handed over to an Acharya.
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