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Parama Ekādaśī
The glories of Parama ekādaśī which occurs during the
waning moon on an extra leap year month is described by
Lord Kṛṣṇa to Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira.
Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira said, “O my Lord! What is the name
of the ekādaśī which occurs during the waning moon on an
extra leap year month and what is the procedure of observing
this ekādaśī.”
Lord Kṛṣṇa replied, “O King! The name of this ekādaśī is
Parama ekādaśī. This Auspicious ekādaśī destroys all ones
sinful reactions and awards one material enjoyment and
liberation. The procedure for observing this ekādaśī is same as I
have already described to you. One should worship the
Supreme Lord who is the master of all beings on this ekādaśī.
Now please hear an enchanting story which I had heard from
the sages in the city of Kāmpilya24.
There was a pious brāhmaṇa named Sumedhā lived in the
24 The capital of King Drupada

city of Kāmpilya. He had a chaste wife named Pavitra. But
due to some sinful activities this brāhmaṇa became poor. He
could not earn his livelihood even by begging. He had no food
to eat no cloth to wear and no place to sleep. Nevertheless his
young beautiful wife faithfully served him. Often she had to
remain hungry for the sake of serving a guest. In spite of often
remaining hungry her face did not become pale. She never
told her husband about this.
Upon seeing that his wife was becoming weak day by day
the brāhmaṇa condemned himself and said to his sweet
speaking wife O dear one! Although I have tried to beg from
the most influential people yet I did not get anything now tell
me what should I do? Should I go to a foreign country to earn
wealth. I may get some thing there if I am fortunate. Without
enthusiasm no work is successful that is why intelligent
persons always praise the enthusiasm of the people.
After hearing these words of her husband Sumedhā the
beautiful eyed Pavitra said to her husband with folded hands
and tears in her eyes. “There is none else more intelligent than
you. What ever we do and what ever we achieve in this world
are due to our previous deeds. If one has no piety
accumulated from his previous life he cannot attain any thing
however he may try. If a person distributes knowledge or
wealth in his previous life attain similar things in this life. O
best of the brāhmaṇa! It seems that neither you or me gave any
charity the suitable candidate in our previous life. That is why
both of us will have to stay here together. O Lord! I can not
remain without you even for a movement. Moreover if you go
then people will call me an unfortunate and condemn me.
Therefore please be happy with whatever wealth you can
collect here. You will certainly achieve happiness in this
country only.”
Upon hearing these words of his wife the brāhmaṇa
dropped his plan to go to a foreign country. One day by
providence the great sage Kauṇḍiṇya Muni came there. As
soon as Sumedhā saw him, he and his wife became joyful and
offered their obeisances to the sage. He offered an āsana to the
sage and worshiped him properly. He said, “O great sage!
Today our lives have become successful for we have received
your darśana. Thereafter the couple fed the sage according to

their ability. Then the wife of the brāhmaṇa asked O learned
sage! What is the means of destroying poverty? Without
giving any charity how can one get wealth education and so
on? My husband wanted to go to a foreign country in order to
earn wealth but I have stopped him from this act, It is indeed
our good fortune that you have come here. By your mercy our
poverty will certainly be destroyed. Now please instruct us in
such a way so that our poverty is destroyed.”
After hearing these words Pavitra the great sage
Kauṇḍiṇya said, “There is an auspicious ekādaśī which occurs
during the waning moon on the extra leap year month. This
ekādaśī is very dear to the Lord and it is known as Parama
ekādaśī. This ekādaśī vanquishes ones sinful reactions, material
miseries and poverty. By observing this ekādaśī a person
certainly become prosperous. This sacred ekādaśī was first
observed by Kubera. As a result of this Lord Śiva became
pleased and awarded him the benediction to become very
rich. By observing this ekādaśī King Hariścandra regained his
kingdom and wife whom he once sold out. O beautiful eyed!
You should also observe this ekādaśī.” Lord Kṛṣṇa continued,
“O Pāṇḍava! After happily and affectionately describing the
topics of Parama ekādaśī Kauṇḍiṇya Muni described the
auspicious vow known as Pāñcarātrika. By observing
Pāñcarātrika vow one attains liberation. One should begin to
observe Pāñcarātrika vow from the day of Parama ekādaśī with
proper rules and regulations. Any one who according to his
ability fasts for five days beginning from Parama ekādaśī he
goes back to the abode of Lord Viṣṇu along with his father,
mother and wife. One who only eat ones a day during this five
days becomes freed from all sinful reactions and goes to the
spiritual world.
According to the instructions of Kauṇḍiṇya Muni both the
husband and wife duly observed this Parama ekādaśī. When
the vows of ekādaśī and Pāñcarātrika were completed a prince
from the royal palace came there being inspired from Lord
Brahmā the prince offered them a new house decorated with
beautiful royal furniture. He also gave a cow to the brāhmaṇa
for their livelihood and after praising the brāhmaṇa couple the
prince left. As a result of this prince returned to the abode of
Viṣṇu at the end of his life.

As the brāhmaṇas are best among the human beings as the
cows are best among the four legged animals, as Indra is the
best among the demigods similarly the leap year month is the
best among all the months. Within this month the two ekādaśīs
namely Padminī and Parama are most dear to Lord Hari.
Having received the human form of life if a person does not
observe ekādaśī then he never attains any happiness
throughout his eight million four hundred thousand species of
life. Rather he suffers unlimited miseries. By virtue of great
piety one obtains a human birth that is why one should
certainly observe the vow of ekādaśī.
After hearing the glories of this ekādaśī Mahārāja
Yudhiṣṭhira along with his wife and brothers observed this
sacred ekādaśī.

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