Jaya Ekadashi is observed on the eleventh day of Shukla Paksha (the eleventh day of the waxing phase of moon) in the month of Magha (January – February). The other name of Jaya Ekadashi in South India is Bhoumi Ekadashi. If Jaya Ekadashi falls on a Thursday, it is considered doubly auspicious. Fasting and puja done on this day are believed to make a person escape his sins and receive the blessings and love of Lord Vishnu in abundant measures.
Significance of Jaya Ekadashi
Jaya Ekadashi is also called as Bhishma Ekadashi. Bhishma was the grandfather of the Pandavas and Kauravas, the cousins who fought the war of Kurukshetra in the epic Mahabharat. Known for his valour, moral values and determination, Bhishma awaited his death on the bed of arrows in the battlefield and left his mortal body on the day of Jaya Ekadashi. Hence this day is considered highly auspicious. It is said that even the worst of sins like Brahma Hatya can be washed out by fasting on Jaya Ekadashi.
What is done on Jaya Ekadashi
On the day of Jaya Ekadashi, people observe a full and rigorous fast for the whole day and conclude he fast during the Parana time of the Dwadashi (the next day of Ekadashi). The rigorous kind of fast requires the individuals to abstain even from water. However, the milder form of fasting allows taking fruits, milk and liquids. Chanting Vishnu Sahasranama Stotram and worshipping the Lord on Jaya Ekadashi day is a highly meritorious act for the devotees.