For all the posts in this Holidays & Observances series, go here.
Prologue: I have been meaning to write a series about Holidays and Observances that we (my family and friends) follow in both India (my birth country) and USA (my adopted country). This series is dedicated to those. On a side note, perhaps I might witness some of the celebrations from other countries as well that may get their way into this series. 🙂
The first Ekadasi that falls in the month of February is Jaya Ekadasi that occurred on Feb 1 2023. As I mentioned in the very fist Ekadasi post, if you put the religion aside, allowing your body to fast twice a month is an excellent way of cleansing and detoxifying to aid in repair and rejuvenation.
This is also known as Bhishma Ekadasi or Bhoumi Ekadasi. Religious / Mythological belief is that by observing this day, one will be blessed of redemption, celebrate victory over enemies, overcome financial difficulties and fulfill one’s desires. Typically one offers prayers and performs pooja to Lord Vishnu on this day. Blue colored clothing is preferred on this day.
It is known as Bhishma Ekadasi because mythologically it is said that Bhishma, the grand uncle of Kauravas and Pandavas in the epic Mahabharatha, chose this day to depart his mortal soul.
Incidentally this year Jaya Ekadasi coincided with beginning of Imbolc, a Gaelic traditional festival and I got a chance to attend one of their events in Connecticut. Post coming soon on that.