Ekadashi Vrat

Ekadasi Fasting is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and is observed on the 11th day of waning and waxing phase of moon in a traditional Hindu calendar. This is one of the most popular Vrat observed in Hinduism. How to observe Ekadashi was narrated to Arjuna by Lord Krishna and is found in the Bhavisyottara Purana.

When to start Ekadasi Fasting? 

Lord Krishna advices Arjuna to begin the Ekadasi fasting in the autumn season with Utpanna or Uttpatti Ekadasi occurring during the waning phase of the moon in November – December. Utpanna Ekadasi is observed during the waning phase of the moon in the month of November – December. Utpanna Ekadasi 2011 date is November 21. The significance of Utpanna was narrated to Arjuna by Lord Krishna and is mentioned in the Bhavishyottara Purana. For those devotees who like to begin the monthly Ekadasi fasting, Utpanna Ekadasi is the Ekadashi that they should start with.
People can escape from the bad effects of all the sins accumulated during the previous births and this birth. Thus Utpanna Ekadasi helps in attaining Moksha. 
Fresh beginners who want to undertake Ekadasi fasting start it with Utpanna Ekadasi. They can continue it forever or for a year. How long it is continued depends on the devotee.
All the normal rules associated with Ekadasi are observed during Utpanna Ekadashi.

Ekadashi Vrat Fasting Method
Ekadasi is the name of the Goddess that arose from Lord Vishnu to defeat Demon Mura. Happy with her divine act, Lord Vishnu blessed her that anyone who observes Ekadasi fast will be freed of their sins and will attain Moksha.
Some people only take a single meal on the Dasami day, the day before Ekadasi.
Things needed for Ekadasi Puja and Prayer
·                     A picture or photo or idol of Lord Vishnu
·                     Fruits
·                     Tulsi leaves (The tulsi leaves should not be picked on the day but on the previous day)
·                     Yellow bananas
·                     And other normal puja items
·                     Wake up early in the morning. Take bath and offer prayers.
·                     Perform a simple puja to Lord Vishnu at home by lighting a lamp and offering fruits and Tulsi leaves.
·                     Pray or meditate for few minutes.
·                     If there is a Vishnu temple nearby visit the temple and witness morning pujas and rituals.
Complete fast or Upavas on the day is the main observance

Ekadasi Fasting
·                     Fasting is for 24 hours. It is believed that a partial or total abstinence from food on Ekadasi is rewarded with bliss.
·                     If you have any health problem or are taking medicines, please consult your doctor before deciding on fasting. You can also opt for a partial fast by avoiding food made of rice.
·                     Do not eat food made from rice on Ekadashi.

·                     Strictly avoid eating rice and grains, honey, meat and eating on a bell metal plate. Do not apply oil on the day.)
·                     Those taking partial fast can consume fruits and milk.
more details on how to fast here
Take bath and offer prayers to Lord Vishnu
Evening Prayers
·                     Take a bath in the evening.
·                     Repeat the morning puja to Vishnu
·                     Visit Vishnu temple and witness the evening puja and rituals.

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