Hindu traditions Karthik Maas is one among the holiest month dedicated to
worshiping of Lord Shiva, Lord Brahma, Lord Vishnu, Lord Angira and Lord Sun.
this month starts with Sun entering the Sign Libra. As per Gregorian calendar
this maas usually fall during the months of (October-November). The most
talked about ritual of this month is Karthik snan and Puja. This year Karthik
Purnima falling on 28th November 2012.
Karthik Poornima is celebrated all over world irrespective of Religious inclinations. For followers of Sikhism this day marks the birthday of Guru Nanak Dev.
Kartik Poornima is celebrated by followers of Jainism as Jain light festival. On this day Lord Mahavira is worshiped. Lamps are lit under the moonlight sky. Devotees visit Palitana- famous Jain pilgrimage which is thrown open for the devotees on this day after being closed for public during the four months of monsoon.
Muslims pay homage to the departed souls and pray for the well being of their near and dear ones.
In Hinduism this day is celebrated for much significance. Some notable among these are –
According to Shastras, after completion of chaturmaas, this day is the beginning of Lord Vishnu’s sleep. Fasting in the Kartik month is considered to be the road to salvation in Kalyug.
On this day Lord Vishnu took avatar as Matsya or the fish incarnation in order to save Manu, the first man, from the primeval flood that destroyed the universe. It is because of Manu that Man is called 'manav' or 'manushya' in Sanskrit. thus the day is also worshipped for his birth of Matsyaavatar. It is believed that performing Puja to Lord Vishnu on this day can generate immense fortune for devotees.
This day is also known as Dev Diwali or Dev-Deppawali- the festival of lights of the gods. It is believed that on this day God’s descend on earth and reside in the sacred rivers. Therefore Karthik Purnima snan attains high importance as it is believed that devotees during this snan get rid of their negativities and receive the blessings from all the Gods. On spiritual front, bathing in these sacred rivers aim to cleanse our inner selves, purify mind and soul against negative feelings like fear, greed, envy, anger, arrogance and selfish desires and replacing the same with love, compassion, generosity, kindness and truth.
Karthik Poornima is also dedicated to the dead ancestors. On this day a ritual bath at a pilgrimage place especially at Pushkar or Varanasi is considered as most auspicious.
The Karthik poornima day is also the birthday of Vrinda, the epitome of the Tulsi plant and last day to perform Tulsi Vivah.
It is believed that lord Kartikeya- the chief of all gods was born on this day.
It is also believed that Lord Krishna worshipped Radha on the day of Karthik Poornima.
The days marks the end of the Sharad Ritu and the start of Hemant Ritu.
With this day winter onsets in India.
The last five days of Karthik Maas are considered much sacred. Known as Panchaka- the five days are devoted to worship of Tulsi, Awala, Shiva and sun bath.
Kartika Purnima celebrates the power of Lord Shiva. It is believed that Lord Shiva killed the demon Tripusara on this day thus the day is also called known as Tripuri poornima and Tripurari Poornima. This Purnima is one of the most propitious days for worshipping of Shiva, next only to the Maha Shivaratri. The legend associated with this goes like-
Tarakasur a demon with three demon sons- Tarakah, Kamalaksh and Vidyutmali got 3 moving cities constructed from Mayasur- the renowned architect of the demons. He gifted one to each sonwith advicenot to cross the paths of Gods or disrespect them.
All three sons performed severe penance to Lord Brahma- who granted them a boon that they would live for a thousand years in three invincible moving cities called Tripuri and could be destroyed by only one arrow that would merge the three cities into one and set them on fire. The cities were made of gold, silver and iron.
Soon the three started harassing the Gods. The Gods then approached Lord Shiva requesting him for resque. Lord Shiva danced the “Tandava”, the dance of destruction, that rocked the three cities. He shot an arrow piercing through the three cities at one time and the fire from his third eye burnt the three cities. The killing of the three demons spread happiness around the world. This form of Shiva is called “Tripuraari or Tripurantaka”.
It is believed Puja, snan or Daan on Kartik Purnima is equivalent to 100 Ashvamedha Yagyas. Good deeds on this day leads the individual toward the way of salvation. Apart from these, such pious deeds bring the devotee closer to supreme power to beget blessings of good health as well as wealth.