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Āmalakī Ekādaśī

The topics of the glories of Āmalakī ekādaśī which occurs during the waxing moon in the month of February- March is described in Brahmāṇḍa Purāṇa in the conversation between King Māndhātā and sage Vasiṣṭha.

Once King Māndhātā asked to the sage Vasiṣṭha, O most fortunate one if you are pleased with and merciful to me then kindly describe to me about a vow by following of which I can attain all auspiciousness. The sage Vasiṣṭha replied, “O King now I will explained to you about the glories and history of a great vow which awards one all auspiciousness. O King! The name of this vow is Āmalakī ekādaśī. The influence of the piety accumulated by following this ekādaśī certainly destroyed all ones sinful reactions and awards liberation as well as one can attain the result of donating one thousand cows.

In the ancient time there was a city named Vaidiśa which was inhabited by many healthy prosperous brāhmaṇas, kṣatriyas, vaiśyas and śūdras. O Lion hearted king there was no atheistic or sinful person in this beautiful city. The entire city was filled with the sound of Vedic mantras. In this famous city there lived a truthful pious king named Caitraratha who was born in the family of King Pāśabiṅduka, a member of the dynasty of moon. King Caitraratha was powerful, heroic, opulent and well versed in the scriptures.

During the reign of this king there were all kinds of auspiciousness and prosperity found in the kingdom. All his subjects were attached to the devotional service of Lord Viṣṇu and all of them observed the vow of ekādaśī. Due to remaining engaged in the devotional service to Lord Hari everyone lived happily in his Kingdom.

There was not a single poor or miser person found in his kingdom. After living happily for many years in this way once Āmalakī ekādaśī conjoined with dvādaśī which occurs during the waxing moon in the month of February- March. Realizing that this ekādaśī bestows great benefits the king and his subjects resolved to observe this ekādaśī with proper rules and regulations. Early in the morning on the day of ekādaśī the King and his subjects took bath in the river and went to the temple of Lord Viṣṇu situated on the bank of the river. Within the temple there was an Āmalakī tree where he places a pitcher filled with water and brought an umbrella, cloths, shoes and five kinds of jewels for the worship.

Thereafter the king worshiped Lord Paraśurāma and Āmalakī by offering water, shoes, canopy, gold, diamonds, rubies, pearls,
sapphires and fragrant incense. Then the king led by the sages and followed by his subjects offered prayers to Lord Paraśurāma as follows. ‘O Lord Paraśurāma! O Son of Reṇukā! O You who is situated under the shadow of Āmalakī tree! O bestower of material enjoyment and liberation I offer my respectful obeisances to you.’ Then they offered prayers to the Āmalakī tree.

O Āmalakī! O Sustainer of the Universe! O Offspring of Lord Brahmā! O destroyer of all sins! We offer our respectful obeisances to you. Kindly accept our offering. After properly worshiping the Lord and Āmalakī in this way the king accompanied by his subjects remained awake that night within the temple of Lord Viṣṇu. They sang songs and offered beautiful prayers with devotion in praise of the Lord and the Āmalakī tree. At that time by providence a hunter came there. This hunter earned his livelihood simply by killing various living entities. When he came to the temple which was decorated with ghee lamp, incense and other auspicious items and saw that many people were remaining awake while glorifying the Lord. He sat down with them and began to contemplate what all these was going on?.

The fortunate hunter took darśana of Lord Dāmodara placed on the top of the pitcher and began to hear the transcendental topics
of Viṣṇu. Although he was afflicted with hunger he was astonished to see this and remained awake that whole night while hearing the glories of ekādaśī. In the morning king left towards his palace accompanied by his subjects. The hunter also returned home and happily took his meal.

After many years the hunter left his body. By the influence of Āmalakī ekādaśī and as a result of remaining awake on the night of this
ekādaśī the hunter in his next life became a king with innumerable elephants, horses, chariots and army. The hunter took birth as Vasuratha the powerful son of King Viduratha who ruled the famous city of Jayantī. King Vasuratha ruled one million villages.

He was as brilliant as the sun, as effulgent as the moon and as powerful as Lord Viṣṇu as tolerant as the earth. He was truthful, fixed in his occupational duties and became a great devotee of Lord Viṣṇu.

One day king Vasuratha who was very kind and charitable lost his way while hunting in the forest. He was extremely tired and afflicted with hunger. Not finding any other alternative the king lied down within that dense forest using his arm as pillow. At that time some mlechhas who lived in that forest came before the sleeping king and began to torture him in various ways. Considering the king as their enemy they attempted to kill him. They thought that this king had previously killed our fathers mothers, sons, grandsons and uncles and have compelled us to wonder aimlessly.

Speaking in this way the mlechhas took up their different weapons and began to beat the king. But to their utter surprise non of their
weapons touched the body of the king and as a result the king did not feel any injury at all. When all their weapons were used up the mlechhas became morose and lifeless due to fear.

They lost all power to move any further. At that time a beautiful extraordinary women decorated with various ornaments and fragrant sandalwood paste appeared from the body of the king. She was decorated with an attractive flower garland and her eyes were reddish due to anger. She raised her eye brow and holding a disc in her hand she rushed towards the mlechhas to kill them in an angry mood. Within a movement that powerful women killed all the sinful mlechhas. After this incident the king woke up. On seeing
such a ghastly killings the king who just got up from sleep became frightened and stunned. When the king saw his fierce looking enemies lying killed he became astonished and said, ‘Alas! Who is that most well wishing friend of mine who has protected my life by killing these powerful enemies? I convey my heartfelt gratefulness to him for this great act.’ At that time a voice from the sky was heard, ‘who else except Lord Keśava is capable of protecting his surrendered souls?. He alone is the maintainer of surrendered devotees.

After hearing these voice from the sky the king became extremely amazed and his heart melted with devotional feeling. Thereafter the king returned to his palace and ruled his kingdom like Indra without any
obstacles.

The Sage Vasiṣṭha continued my dear king! Any person who observes this vow of this sacred Āmalakī ekādaśī undoubtedly returns to the abode of Lord Viṣṇu.

Ekādaśī is the mother of Kṛṣṇa- Bhakti, love and affection. If you do not follow ekādaśī, Kṛṣṇa- Bhakti will never come.