Parama Ekadashi-The Auspicious Fast of Generosity

Parama Ekadashi-The Auspicious Fast of Generosity

Parama Ekadashi, also known as ‘Purushottam Kamala Ekadashi,’ is observed on the 11th day of the Krishna Paksha during the Adhika Masa in the Hindu calendar, typically falling between July and August in the Gregorian calendar. Adhika Masa, an extra lunar month occurring every three years, holds special significance and is dedicated to Lord Vishnu.

Lord Vishnu

Legend of Parama Ekadashi

The legend of Parama Ekadashi revolves around Sumedha and Pavitra, a humble Brahmin couple residing in Kampilya. Despite their limited means, they were renowned for their unwavering hospitality and boundless generosity. Their simple abode was a sanctuary for those in need, and their heartfelt service touched many lives.

One day, Sumedha decided they should move to a larger city in pursuit of greater wealth, believing it would enable them to serve even more people. However, Pavitra held a different view. She believed that destiny was not influenced by external factors and that their sincerity and devotion to God mattered more than their location. She urged them to remain where they were and continue seeking blessings through their worship.

Their lives took a transformative turn when the revered Kaundinya Rishi visited their humble dwelling. Honoring the sage with their whole hearts, they sought his blessings. In return, he advised them to observe a fasting ritual, a ‘vrat,’ on the Ekadashi Tithi during the Adhika Masa, while praying to Lord Vishnu. Acting on his counsel, the couple soon experienced a remarkable change in their circumstances. Their fortunes flourished, empowering them to extend their benevolence further.


Parama Ekadashi is of great significance because by observing the vrat with utmost sincerity and devotion on this day, a devotee can rid himself/herself of his/her financial problems. Moreover, this Ekadashi Vrat is observed once in about three years. This is one of those Hindu years which has the Adhika Masa. And the legey associated with it is also of great importance.

The fast is dedicated to Lord Vishnu, who symbolizes the preserver and protector of the universe. By engaging in prayers, devotional songs, and reading scriptures, devotees seek to establish a closer connection with the divine. It is believed that sincere observance of Parama Ekadashi can lead to the forgiveness of past sins, similar to the redemption experienced by Pundarika.

Customs and Celebrations

The observance of Parama Ekadashi involves several customs and rituals that vary based on regional traditions. Devotees wake up early, take a purifying bath, and wear clean clothes. They offer prayers to Lord Vishnu and engage in reciting hymns and mantras dedicated to him. Temples are adorned with flowers, and images or idols of Lord Vishnu are worshipped with utmost devotion.

One of the significant aspects of Parama Ekadashi is the observance of a strict fast. Devotees abstain from consuming food and water during the day, practicing self-control and focusing their energy on spiritual pursuits. Some may opt for a partial fast, consuming only fruits and milk. The fast is broken on the following day, known as Dwadashi, after offering prayers and seeking blessings from Lord Vishnu.

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