by N.A. Deshpande | 1951 | 1,261,945 words | ISBN-10: 8120838297 | ISBN-13: 9788120838291
This page describes bringing the vow to conclusion which is chapter 95 of the English translation of the Padma Purana, one of the largest Mahapuranas, detailling ancient Indian society, traditions, geography, as well as religious pilgrimages (yatra) to sacred places (tirthas). This is the ninety-fifth chapter of the Uttara-Khanda (Concluding Section) of the Padma Purana, which contains six books total consisting of at least 50,000 Sanskrit metrical verses.
1-9. O king, now listen properly to the rite of bringing to conclusion—what the rite is—being told by me in brief. The observer of the vow should bring to conclusion the vow on the fourteenth of Kārtika for pleasing Viṣṇu. Above the Tulasī he should put upan [upon?] auspicious pavilion with a good arched doorway and beautified with flowers and chowries. At the doors he should separately honour the door-keepers. He (should have) Jaya and Vijaya, meritorious and of good character. At the root of the Tulasī he should draw (an) auspicious (circle) all around. It should be properly beautified and ornamented with four colours. Above it should be a covering (decked) with five jewels. Having placed there a pitcher with a big fruit, he should worship there the god of gods holding a conch, a disc, a mace, having put on a silken yellow garment and with Lakṣmī. The observer of the vow should also honour in the circle the regents of quarters like Indra, since he was awakened by the gods on Dvādaśī along with Trayodaśī. He was seen to be honoured on the fourteenth. Therefore, he is more venerable. A man, calm and of a restrained mind, should devoutly fast on that day.
10-24. With his preceptor’s consent he should worship the golden (image of) the lord of the god of gods in sixteen ways of worship with several eatables. By means of auspicious (acts like) singing and (playing upon) musical instruments, he should keep awake at night. Those who on (the night of) keeping awake in honour of the Disc-holder (i.e. Viṣṇu), sing devoutly, are free from heaps of sins due to hundreds of existences. That fruit (which is obtained) by those keeping awake on the day of Viṣṇu, and singing and dancing, is said to be the fruit of those who give a thousand cows. He should sing, dance etc. and should present spectacles. Of him who keeps awake on the night of keeping awake for Viṣṇu, in front of Viṣṇu, he who amuses Viṣṇu’s devotees by reciting Viṣṇu’s accounts, who produces the sounds of musical instruments with his mouth, and who presents free talks, who with these dispositions keeps awake in honour of Viṣṇu, his religious merit everyday is said to be equal to (a visit to) crores of holy places. Then on the full-moon day he should invite thirty or more brāhmaṇas with their wives according to his capacity. Since having given boons Viṣṇu took up the form of fish, therefore, whatever is given, offered into fire or muttered is said to be of an inexhaustible fruit. Therefore, the observerer of the vow should feed those brāhmaṇas with sweetened milk etc. He should (saying) Ato deva, offer sesamum-seeds and sweetened milk to two separately for pleasing the god of gods and deities. Having then worshipped the god (Viṣṇu), Tulasī and (other) deities, he should give them presents according to his capacity and salute them. Then the observer of the vow should duly worship there a tawny cow. Having honoured his preceptor instructing him in the vow with garments, ornaments etc. and having honoured him with his wife, he should give the cow to him. ‘Due to your grace may the lord of gods be always pleased with me. May all that sin committed by me during seven existences, perish due to this vow, and may my progeny be stable. Due to the worship may my desires be always fruitful. On death may I obtain Viṣṇu’s position very difficult to be secured.’
25-31 Having thus apologised to and pleased the brāhmaṇas, he should dismiss them. Then the observer of the vow should give (the materials of) the worship with the jewels to his preceptor. Then the devoted one should eat with his friends and elders. The rite is said to be like this in Kārtika or Māgha. A man who thus duly observes the Kārtika vow, is free from sins, and getting release he would go into Viṣṇu’s proximity. The fruit due to the proper observance of this vow should be known to be a crore times more than that of all vows, (visits to) all holy places and all gifts. Those who are engrossed in devotion to Viṣṇu and who observe the Kārtika vow are lucky and very meritorious, and get all the fruits. Sins remaining in his body have deliberation through fear of him. They say, ‘If this man observes this vow, where shall we go?’ Those devotees who in this way listen to the restraints, and those who narrate them before Viṣṇu’s devotees, would obtain the fruit due to their having properly observed the vow, and have all their sins destroyed.