What is Akshaya Tritiya?
Akshaya Tritiya celebrates the birthday of Lord Parasurama, the sixth incarnation of Lord Vishnu. Akshaya Tritiya, one of the four most important days in the Hindu religion is also an important day for Jains. The day falls on the third Thithi (lunar day) of Shukla Paksha (waxing moon) in Vishaka (May – June) month. Supposedly, on this day, Sage Veda Vyas and Lord Ganesha began writing the Mahabharata. Akshaya means ‘endless’ as well as something that always has potency.
The Importance of Akshaya Tritiya
Akshaya Tritiya has a religious and astrological angle to it that increases its significance. The moon and the sun are at their most radiant on this day. Also, Lord Ganesha, the god of wisdom and the one who removes obstacles, began work on the Mahabharata, along with Sage Veda Vyasa. It was on this day, according to the Mahabharata, that Dushasana, brother of the Kaurava prince, Duryodhana, tried to disrobe Draupadi, wife of their Pandava cousins. Draupadi was saved from utter humiliation by Lord Krishna who replenished her sari as Dushasana kept stripping it away. According to Hindu mythology, the Treta Yuga started on this day, and the Ganga river descended to earth from heaven. Akshaya Tritiya is associated with good fortune, and people believe that any venture begun on this day will keep growing. So many people start new ventures, as a business, movie or construction work on Akshaya Tritiya day.
The Badrinath and Kedarnath temples, part of the Char Dham Yatra, also open for pilgrims on this day. Badrinath and Kedarnath, in the Himalayas, are popular pilgrimage destinations.
What to do on Akshaya Tritiya?
Akshaya Tritiya is celebrated with much enthusiasm, and people buy gold, silver, and diamond jewelry on this occasion. Some people may even observe a day-long fast and worship Lord Vasudeva. It is also the custom to pray to the God of Wealth, Lord Kubera and donate money to the poor. Lord Krishna has said that when one donates money, one will be able to rise above petty things and elevate one’s spirit. One can also offer barley in holy fire to get divine blessings.
How to celebrate Akshaya Tritiya?
Lighting lamps with pure ghee are commonly done on Akshaya Tritiya. Poojas usually start in the morning and continue till late evening. Mantras are read during the Pooja, and they are traditionally chanted for 108 times. During the Pooja and mantra chanting, the images of Goddess Lakshmi and Sudharshana Kubera Yantra are placed in front.