Today is Papankusa Ekadashi

Hare Krsna dear devotees;
Dandvat pranam, Jai Srila Prabhupad.

Today is ‘Papankusa’ Ekadashi. The word itself explains the merit of following this Ekadashi…’papa’ means sin and ‘ankusha’ is a weapon to control an elephant…so this Ekadashi is a weapon to control the mad elephant of sin. In modern days, this word ‘papa’ is used by children to call their father….but this Ekadashi is not meant to control ones father…but in a sense it is…Sri Krsna is our father and He becomes very pleased with His devotees who follows Ekadashi properly…so much that He comes under the control of that devotee…so one who does this Ekadashi nicely can realize the meaning of papa-ankusha….papankusa…bringing Sri Krsna under our ankusha…control).

There are various degrees of sins or offenses….gross to subtle. Swati didi in her weekly prasadam email always advertises and makes us aware of one of the commonly occurring offense or sin –

yagna sistasino santo, mucyante sarva kilbishaih
bhujente ae te aghan papa, ye pacanty atma karnat

The devotees of Supreme Personality of Godhead are saved/ released from all sins as they eat food which is offered to Lord (honor prasadam)….others who prepare food and eat for their own enjoyment eat only sin…this has to be known for food and also other things in our life which we get from Krsna but use it for personal gratification without offering it to Him.

On subtle level, anything that is done which is not for pleasure of Krsna is considered as sin…so as a devotee we remain very careful. It is impossible to make sure that we consciously try to avoid making offenses…but best method is to remain conscious about making sins/ offenses and always try to act in a way to please Krsna…if we do that, automatically all other things like doing the right karma etc is taken care of. This is called devotional service – 24/7. Or avoiding sins 24/7.

As devotees of SriSri Radha Sharadbihari…our aim for doing Ekadashi is not to kill sins or gain merit (punya)…but our aim is to please Them…please our beloved SriSri Radha Sharadbihari as Ekadashi is very dear to Them and They become very pleased with devotees who follows this ‘vrat’ nicely.

I am attaching the story of Papankusha Ekadashi here with. Also I found 2 very nice picture of SriSri Radha Ramanji Bhagawan (Vrindavan) which I am including here for darshan. In one of the picture you will see a tiny bit of blue cloth shining beautifully on SriSri Radha Ramanji…in other picture…yellow just looks gorgeous on Them.

Papankusa Ekadashi
from Sri Brahma Vaivarta Purana

Yudhisthira Maharaja said, "0 Madhusudana, what is the name of the Ekadashi that occurs during the light fortnight of the month of Asvina [September-October] ? Please be merciful and tell this to me."

The Supreme Lord, Shri Krishna, replied, "0 king, please listen as I explain the glories of this Ekadashi – Papankusa Ekadashi-which removes all sins. On this day one should worship the Deity of Padmanabha, the lotusnaveled Lord, according to the rules and regulations. By doing so, one achieves whatever heavenly pleasures he wants in this world and at last attains liberation. Simply by offering one’s humble obeisances unto Lord Vishnu, the rider of Garuda, once can achieve the same merit as is won by performing great penances for a long time with completely controlled senses. Although a person might have committed unlimited sins, he can still escape hell just by paying his obeisances to Lord Hari, who removes all sins.

"The merits gained by going on pilgrimage to tirthas of this earthly planet can also be achieved simply by chanting the holy names of Lord Vishnu. ‘ Whoever chants these sacred names-such as Rama, Vishnu, Janardana, or Krishna-especially on Ekadashi, never sees Yamaraja’s abode. Nor does one who fasts on Papankusa Ekadashi, which is so dear to Me, see that abode.

"Both the Vaishnava who criticizes Lord Siva and the Saivite who criticizes Me certainly go to hell. The merit obtained by performing one thousand horse sacrifices and one hundred Rajasuya sacrifices is not equal to even one sixteenth of the merit a person obtains by fasting on Ekadashi. There is no higher merit one can achieve than that attained by fasting on Ekadashi. Indeed, nothing in all the three worlds is as pleasing or as able to purify one of sin as Ekadashi. the day of the lotus-naveled Lord, Padmanabha.

"O king, until a person observes a fast on the day of Lord Padmanabha named Papankusa Ekadashi, he remains sinful, and the reactions of his past sinful deeds never leave him. There is no merit in all the three worlds that can match the merit one attains by observing a fast on this Ekadashi. Whoever observes it faithfully never has to see death personified, Lord Yamaraja. One who desires liberation, heaven, good health, beautiful women, wealth, and food grains should simply fast on this Ekadashi. 0 King, neither the Ganges, Gaya, Kam, nor Puskara, nor even the holy site of Kuruksetra, can grant as much merit as Papankusa Ekadashi.

"0 Yudhisthira, protector of the earth, after observing Ekadashi during the daytime, the devotee should remain awake through the night, for by doing so he easily attains to the abode of the Supreme Lord, Shri Vishnu. Ten generations of ancestors on his mother’s side, ten generations on his father’s side, and ten generations on his wife’s side are all liberated by a single observance of a fast on this Ekadashi. All these ancestors attain their original, four-armed, transcendental forms. Wearing yellow garments and beautiful garlands, they ride to the spiritual world on the back of Garuda, the enemy of the snakes. This is the benediction My devotee earns simply by observing one Papankusa Ekadashi properly.

"0 best of kings, whether one is a child, a youth, or an old person, fasting on Papankusa Ekadashi frees him of sins and makes him immune to suffering a hellish rebirth. Whoever observes a fast on this Ekadashi becomes free of all his sins and returns to the abode of Lord Hari. Whoever donates gold, sesame seeds, fertile land, cows, grain, drinking water, an umbrella, or a pair of shoes on this most holy day will never have to visit the abode of Yamaraja, who always punishes sinners. But if a resident of earth fails to perform spiritual deeds, especially the observance of a fast on holy days such as Ekadashi, his breathing is said to be no better than the puffing-of a blacksmith’s bellows.

"0 best of kings, especially on Papankusa Ekadashi, even the poor should first bathe and then give some charity and perform other auspicious activities according to their ability. "Whoever performs sacrifices or builds public ponds, resting places, gardens, or houses does not suffer the punishments of Yamaraja. Indeed, one should understand that a person must have performed such pious activities as these in his past life if he is long-lived, wealthy, of high birth, or free from all diseases. But a person who observes Papankusa Ekadashi goes to the abode of the Supreme Lord."

Lord Krishna concluded, "Thus, 0 saintly Yudhisthira, I have narrated to you the glories of Papankusa Ekadashi. Please question me further if you wish to hear more about Ekadashi."

your servant,
Padmanabh das

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