30 Oct 2015

Karthik Month 2015 - Fasting

"…on the spiritual path as you are fasting, you are in a state of constantly remembering God, so your mind is not focused on the food, but mostly on your spiritual path. So, this helps you to elevate also. Because, you see, when you eat a lot, your concentration also becomes heavy. You can’t really concentrate fully. But when you are fasting, you are light. Then it becomes easy for you to concentrate on the Divine or do your sadhana."  – Sri Swami Vishwananda

We are happy to announce the arrival of Karthik Month!

This time of year is very dear to Lord Krishna, as many of his leelas were enacted during this month, such as the Govardhana Leela and the Ras Leela. It is said that, during this month, whatever prayer you offer to Krishna, the punya, or spiritual benefit, received is much more than other months. According to scriptures, when you fast during an auspicious time, the hold of the material world is lessened by the fast, and that accelerates our spiritual growth.

Although it is tradition to fast in some way during the month, Sri Swami Vishwananda has made it absolutely clear that it is up to you whether to fast or not, and if fasting, what kind of fast you want to do. As with most things on the path of Bhakti, there are no prescribed rules as to how one should perform rituals, as each person has a unique and different relationship to God.

If you wish to fast, we recommend doing it on the Ekadashi days (see below).

Info on Ekadashi: Ekadashi takes place on the eleventh day of every lunar fortnight in the Hindu Tradition, or 2 times per month according to the western calendar. In Hinduism, Ekadashi is believed to be an auspicious day dedicated to Lord Vishnu. If you choose to fast during this time, it is recommend that one abstains from all types of grains, but you can have a light diet of nuts, milk, fruits, etc., if you wish. The fast should begin at sunrise and last until the next day. Ekadashi Dates for Karthik Month: 7 & 22 November, 2015

For those of you interested in learning more about the Ekadashi dates for the reminder of the year and for 2016, stay tuned for a future blog post on the subject.

Regardless of whether you choose to fast or not, we cordially invite you to the upcoming events planned in celebration of Kartik Month:

1. Karthik Night at Cudrefin, Switzerland – 7 November 2015
2. Diwali at Shree Peetha Nilaya (Springen, Germany) – 11 November 2015
3. Karthik Night at Shree Peetha Nilaya - 14 November 2015

You can find out more about upcoming events at: www.bhaktimarga.org/events