Kartik Sud 3, Sunday 22 Oct 2017

Aamalki Ekadashi

King Maandhata asked Vashishta Muni, "O Muni, how can one achieve emancipation from life and death?" Muni replied, "O King, the outcomes of following the vrat of Aamalki Ekadashi once helped a hunter achieve happiness. The vrat of Aamalki Ekadashi is the destroyer of sins and donor of all happiness and salvation."

Once in the beautiful city of Vaidisha, there lived a ruler called King Chaitrarath. He was very religious, truthful and very noble. He looked well after his people. The people in the city were very happy and always counted themselves so lucky to have such a king. They celebrated with the King himself all the religious festivals throughout the year. His dignity and prestige was well talked about in the neighbouring cities. On the day of Fagan sud 11 (Aamalki Ekadashi), the king with all his subjects went to the river early in the morning, had a holy dip and later arrived at the temple in the city. They performed poojan with due respect and honour to the Gods and at dusk, they all sat down to continue the vrat by performing Jaagran.

During the jaagran, a hungry and tired hunter, who did not accomplish a hunt for the day, arrived at the temple. As the discourses were recited, he listened and suddenly realized inner-peace within and eventually sat down and joined the others in devotion. At the early morning sunrise, everyone including the hunter, went to their homes to break off the fast. As time went on, the hunter breathed his last and due to the fasting and vrat of Aamalki Ekadashi, he was born again as Prince Vasurath to his father King Vidurak. The prince grew up to be noble, righteous and full of strength to rule the kingdom and to look after his people.

Once Vasurath went on a deer hunting tour in the jungles but could not find a way back to the palace. At nightfall, due to the tiredness, he rested under a tree and nodded off to sleep. There resided a clan of people in the jungle who were enemies to the king for a long, long time. They found a great opportunity to behead the king and surrounded him in the middle of the night. As soon as one was about to let go the axe, out emerged from the body of Vasurath, a lady with a chakra and various artilleries in her hands to defend the King. She killed all the enemies.

In the morning the king woke up and found dead bodies around him and started wondering what had happened. To answer his questions, a divine voice spoke from the skies and enlightened him that God himself has protected him from the enemies due to the rewards for the Ekadashi vrat. The King was pleased and to pay his respects to God, he became more religious and extended his continuous devotion.

Vashishta Muni said, "O King, performing vrat on Aamalki Ekadashi helps one in achieving happiness in this world and the next."