The Skanda Purana

by G. V. Tagare | 1950 | 2,545,880 words

This page describes Vratas and Niyamas to Be Observed in Caturmasa which is chapter 232 of the English translation of the Skanda Purana, the largest of the eighteen Mahapuranas, preserving the ancient Indian society and Hindu traditions in an encyclopedic format, detailling on topics such as dharma (virtous lifestyle), cosmogony (creation of the universe), mythology (itihasa), genealogy (vamsha) etc. This is the two hundred thirty-second chapter of the Tirtha-mahatmya of the Nagara-khanda of the Skanda Purana.

Chapter 232 - Vratas and Niyamas to Be Observed in Cāturmāsa

[Sanskrit text for this chapter is available]

The sages said:

1. Do tell us what else should be performed by way of Vrata, Niyama, Homa, Japa or Dāna when the Lord of the chiefs of Devas armed with conch, discus and club is asleep.

Sūta said:

2-4. Pitāmaha has said, O Brāhmaṇas, that whatever be the Niyama that is observed when the Garuḍa-emblemed Lord (Viṣṇu) is asleep, shall accord infinite benefit. Hence with all efforts a sensible man must take up some Niyama, Japa, Homa, Vrata or Svādhyāya. O excellent Brāhmaṇas, it should be performed for the purpose of pleasing the Discus-armed One (Vīṣṇu [Viṣṇu?]).

5. The man who spends the four months of rainy season with only a single meal per day with Vāsudeva in view becomes endowed with wealth.

6. He who takes food along with the constellations[1] (? as per constellation) while Janārdana is asleep shall become rich, handsome and intelligent (of good mental proclivities).

7. He who spends the four months of rainy season with fasts on alternate days, O excellent Brāhmaṇas, shall always reside in Vaikuṇṭha.

8. He who takes only one meal in the course of six-meal times (i.e. three days) while Janārdana is asleep, shall obtain the full benefit of Rājasūya and Aśvamedha sacrifices.

9. He who always spends the four months with fasts of three nights’ duration, shall not be born in the world at all.

10. The man who always spends the four months with alternate meals in the mornings and evenings (i.e. one day evening meal and the next ḍay morning meal and so on till the end of Cāturmāsya) gets the benefit of Agniṣṭoma Yajña.

11. If anyone observes the Ayācita (Non-begging) Vrata while Madhusūdana is asleep, he will never be separated from his kinsmen.

12. He who eschews oil bath and especially the use of ghee during the four months of rainy season, shall become one enjoying pleasures in heaven.

13. The man who spends all the four months observing celibacy, shall stay in heaven as he pleases, after going there riding in an excellent aerial chariot.

14. He who eschews liquor and meat all these four months and takes bath without (use of) oil, shall always be liberated.

15-16. The person who eschews Śāka (vegetables, greens) in the month of Śrāvaṇa, curds in Bhādrapada, milk in Āśvayuja (Āśvina) months and meat in Kārttika, for ever shall not be affected by sins committed in the course of a year. Manu, the son of the Self-born Lord, has spoken these words, O excellent Brāhmaṇas.

17-18. During the month of Śrāvaṇa, Brahmā passes on to Śāka (vegetables, greens), Viṣṇu to curd in the month of Bhādrapada, Hara to milk in the month of Āśvayuja and all the three pass on to meat in the Kārttika month. Hence one should eschew all these in every respect during these months.

19. The man who eschews bell-metal (utensils) when the Garuḍa-emblemed Lord is asleep, shall obtain the full benefit of Vājapeya and Atirātra.

20. If an excellent Brāhmaṇa abstains from eating pungent and saline (foodstuffs), all his Pūrtas (actions of pious liberality and social service) shall become effectively powerful.

21. He who performs Homa during these four months with gingelly seeds and raw rice-grains uttering Mantras pertaining to Viṣṇu and concluding it with “Svāhā” shall not fall sick.

22. If anyone takes bath, stands before Viṣṇu and performs the Japa of Puruṣasūkta, his intellect increases like the Moon in the bright half of a month.

23. He who holds in his hand fruits and circumambulates Viṣṇu one hundred eight times silently, will not be afflicted (adversely affected) by sins:

24. He who within his capacity serves sweet cooked-rice to eminent Brāhmaṇas, especially in the month of Kārttika shall obtain the benefit of Agniṣṭoma.

25. He who recites the four Vedas in the shrine of Viṣṇu during the four months of rainy season, shall always be endowed with learning.

26. If any one always makes arrangement for dance and music programmes in the abode (shrine) of Viṣṇu, the celestial damsels will dance before him when he goes to heaven.

27. A Brāhmaṇa who sponsors dance and music programmes during days and nights during the four months of rainy season shall attain the status of a Gandharva.

28. O Brāhmaṇas, all these Niyamas (restraints and observances) may be carried out all the four months or in the month of Kārttika alone.

29. Still, O excellent Brāhmaṇas, they are to be carried out in Kārttikī through devotees of Viṣṇu by one who is desirous of getting the benefit of both the worlds.

30-31. The Brāhmaṇas who always eschew meat, bronze-vessels, shaving, honey, sexual intercourse and meal in the month of Kārttika shall get the benefit of all the Niyamas mentioned before.

32. O Brāhmaṇas, he who offers lights on the dome over the place (shrine) of Lord Jalaśāyin shall acquire the benefit of the six Vratās mentioned above.

33. Whatever is easily available and liked the most should be checked during the four months by persons desirous of attaining auspiciousness.

34. After the observance of the Niyama, the devotee shall make a gift to a Brāhmaṇa of the very article subjected to restraint, within his capacity. There shall be the benefit thereof.

35. A man who is foolish enough to spend the four months without Niyama, Vrata or Jāpa is no better than dead even if he is alive.

36. What are called Kāka-yavas (barren corns bereft of grain) and Araṇyatilas (wild gingelly seeds) are only in name. They are not substantial. In the same way these men (who do not observe Niyamas etc.) are worthless like them on the earth.

37. Hence, O excellent Brāhmaṇas, one should assiduously observe at least one little Niyama in Kārttika.

38-39. Thus, O Brāhmaṇas, everything connected with the Cāturmāsyavrata and the greatness thereof has been narrated to you all in detail. He who listens to this always, or reads it with concentration shall become rid of the sins committed during the four months.

Footnotes and references:


This is a vague name of the Vrata. It could not be traced in the list of Vratas in HD V. i.324-26.

Help me keep this site Ad-Free

For over a decade, this site has never bothered you with ads. I want to keep it that way. But I humbly request your help to keep doing what I do best: provide the world with unbiased truth, wisdom and knowledge.

Let's make the world a better place together!

Like what you read? Consider supporting this website: