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Kamika Ekadashi is celebrated on the 11th day of the dark fortnight in the month of Shravana according to the Hindu calendar, which corresponds to sometime in the month of July-August. The day is dedicated to Lord Krishna and it is said that observing a fast on this day provides the benefits, equivalent to donating a milk cow along with her calf and entire feed, which is considered to be the ultimate donation in Hindu culture.
In 2013, Kamika Ekadashi will be celebrated on 2nd August.
The Story of Kamika Ekadashi
In Hindu culture, there is generally a story or a legend associated with every festival and holy day. The same holds true for Kamika Ekadashi, whose story is as follows.
Once upon a time, in a village there lived a landlord who was notorious for his vicious temper. Once he invited several Brahmins for a feast and for some reason started fighting with one of them. As the argument between the two grew, the temper of the landlord also flared with the result that he ended up unintentionally killing the Brahmin. This depressed the other Brahmins and they refused to have food at the landlord’s place. Once the temper of the landlord cooled down, he realized his folly and sought the advice of various learned men to repent his crime. Then he came across a sage, who advised him to observe the fast of Kamika Ekadashi so as to get freedom from his sin. The landlord followed the Sage’s advice and began to devotedly observe the fast of Kamika Ekadashi. After a few years of penance, one night the landlord had a dream while sleeping near the idol of Lord Krishna at night. In the dream the Lord told him that he had been redeemed of his sin and that now he ought to perform the last rites of the Brahmin after which he would be completely freed from the sin of killing a holy person.
Significance of Kamika Ekadashi
Kamika Ekadashi is considered to one of the most pious and beneficial fasts of Hindu culture. It is said that people who observe this fast strictly obtain freedom from all their past sins. In addiation, they win the favor of Yamraj, the lord of death and live a long and happy life. For people observing this fast, worshipping the Tulsi plant and offering its leaves to Lord Vishnu is considered highly auspicious and fruitful.
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