|| Jai Sriman Narayana ||
Skandhapuranam describes the glories of Parama Ekadashi which occurs in the dark fortnight in the leap year. Lord Krishna describes the splendor of Parma Ekadashi to King Yudhishtira.
The legend has that there was a pious Brahmin Sumedha and his chaste wife Pavithra lived in the city of Kampilya. This couple had to face extreme poverty due to the sins committed by Sumedha in his previous life; his wife Pavithra was highly devoted to her husband in their worse living conditions too. She relentlessly served her guests with her share of food and she would remain abstaining from consuming meal, due to this her body started to fade but her affection towards her husband remained firm. Sumedha was dejected to see their pitiable living conditions, once he revealed his intention to leave the city in search for livelihood, but his dutiful wife Pavithra discouraged him with the consequences it. One day great Sage Kaundinya arrived in Kampilya. Sumedha and Pavithra offered their respectful obeisance to the Sage and received him with great honor. Pavithra served the Sage with sumptuous meal she could offer with the alms her husband had brought home. Pavithra explained the pitiable state of them and enquired the Sage for any austerities, or pilgrimage to get rid of their poverty. Sage Kaundinya narrated the glories of fasting on Parama Ekadashi which could provide abundance of merit includes removal of sins and miseries. It was observed by Lord Kubera/Lord of Wealth, King Harishchandra observed this Ekadashi and reunited with his family and regained his lost glories. Sage Kaundinya advised Pavithra to observe the glorious Parama Ekadashi with utmost faith and devotion that would fulfill their desires and eradicate all the miseries. Whoever feed Vedic/scholarly Bhramins for five days/Pancharathrika would attain the heavenly abode, all the deities, forefathers and demons would be pleased with this pious deed, offering water to a thirsty Bhramin on all these five days would bring the pieties of offering the world as charity, whoever donate a vessel filled sesame seeds would reside in the heaven, whoever donates golden vessel filled with ghee would attain the abode of Lord Surya after a living a luxurious life on Earth, whoever observe strict austerities and abstain from sensual pleasures during these auspicious five days would attain the luxuries of celestial abode and remain in the Indraloka. Pavithra and Sumedha sincerely observed the Parma Ekadashi and witnessed a celestial being; emissary of Lord Bhrama approached them and offered a beautiful home with all the luxuries and the entire village for their livelihood. The couple lived happily and finally attained the abode of Lord Vishnu.
Lord Krishna concluded whoever observes the Parama Ekadashi along with Pancharathrika would be freed from all the sins and attains the abode of Lord Vishnu. The pieties include bathing in sacred river Ganga and Pushkar, offering cows as charity and performance various religious rites. Bhramins are treated as superior among the Varnas likewise Cow among four legged creatures, Lord Indra among the celestials, in the same manner Parma Ekadashi along with the Pancharathrika is treated as highly meritorious that could eradicate all the sins.
|| Jai Sriman Narayana ||