Lord Shri Krishna says, “Of all plants, the sacred Tulasi is most dear to Me; of all months, Kartik is most dear, of all places of pilgrimage, My beloved Dwarka is most dear, and of all days,Ekadashi is most dear.” (Padma Purana, Uttara Khand 112.3)
Kartik or the festival of offering lamps to Lord Krishna, glorifies Lord Krishna’s pastime of being bound with ropes by Mother Yashoda. Observing vrata in the month of Kartik is glorified in the Puranas.
“As Sat-yuga is the best of yugas (ages), as the Vedas are the best among scriptures, as Ganga is best of rivers, so Kartik is the best of months, the most dear to Lord Krishna.” (Skanda Purana)
This vrata begins on 4th Oct 2009(this year), and one may observe the following foremost activities throughout the entire month of Kartik:
- Japa – chanting the holy names of the Lord.
- Worship the Lord by offering ghee lamps (diyas), flowers, incense, food, etc.
- Practice brahmacharya – celibacy.
- Worship of Tulasi Devi.
- Give charity.
- Perform austerities.
The month of Kartika is the best of all months, and it is in this month that many special festivals like Dhan-Teras, Diwali, Govardhan Puja, Bhai Duj,Tulsi Vivaah and various others take place.
Following are excerpts from some scriptures (Puranas) describing the glory of the pious Kartik month:
“If somebody performs even a little worship of Lord Shri Hari in this month, He offers that devotee His own abode.”
“If somebody burns a lamp in the temple of Lord Shri Hari even for a short time (in the month of Kartik), then whatever sins, he has acquired for millions of kalpas (one kalpa equals 1000yugas) are all destroyed.”
“A person, who for the entire month of Kartik eats only once a day, becomes very famous, powerful and heroic.”
“O Narada! I have personally seen that a person who happily reads the Bhagavad Gita in the month of Kartik does not return to the world of birth and death.”
“Of all gifts, the gift of a lamp during the month of Kartik is the best. No gift is its equal.”
“The pious result obtained by bathing in all holy places and giving all charities is not equal to one ten-millionth part of the result obtained by following the vow of Kartik.”
(found in the Padma Purana of Krishna Dvaipayana Vyasa, spoken by Satyavrata Muni in a conversation with Narada Muni and Shaunaka Rishi)
(Shri Hari-bhakti-vilasa 2.16.198)
lasat-kundalam gokule bhrajamanam
paramrishtam atyantato drutya gopya
sthita-graivam damodaram bhakti-baddham
sva-ghoisham nimajjantam akhyapayantam
tadiyeishita-gyeishu bhaktair jitatvam
puna prematas tam shatavrtti vande
na canyam Vrine ’ham vareishad apiha
idam te vapur natha gopala-balam
sada me manasy avirastam kim anyai
vrtam kuntalai snigdha-raktaish ca gopya
muhush cumbitam bimba-raktadharam me
manasy avirastam alam lakisha-labhai
prasida prabho dukha-jalabdhi-magnam
grhaneisha mam agyam edhy akishi-drshya
tvaya mocitau bhakti-bhajau krtau ca
tatha prema-bhaktim svakam me prayaccha
na mokishe graho me ‘sti damodareha
tvadiyodarayatha vishvasya dhamne
namo radhikayai tvadiya-priyayai
namo ’nanta-lilaya devaya tubhyam