Akshaya Tritiya is the annual springtime festival of Hindus, celebrated on third lunar day of Shukla Paksha of Vaishakha month. It is considered as one of the most auspicious days for Hindus and Jains where most people purchase gold on this day as it is believed that whatever you buy and donate on this day is bound to grow. It is also said that all activities whether spiritual or material undertaken on this day bring desired results. It is a great and very auspicious day for performing meditation, yoga, japa.
Any auspicious day in the Hindu Panchanga (Calendar) is utilized for developing spirituality by various means such as performing pooja, worshipping Ishta Devta, offering homage to ancestors, feeding Brahmanas, etc. Such activities make us attain spiritual and material opulence.
If we break down the word “Akshaya” it is formed of two words- a (not) and Akshaya (diminishing); which means never diminishing. Akshay Tritiya, also known as Akha Teej or Akti is named after the “third lunar day” of the spring month of Vaishakha in the Hindu Panchang.
As per our Hindu Panchanga, there are three and a half most auspicious muhurtas (auspicious days/time) in the entire year. These ‘Sade Tin’ muhurta are based on the Hindu Lunar calendar. Akshay Tritiya is one of those highly auspicious muhurtas. The other three are Chaitra Shukla Pratipada- the first day of the Shukla Paksha or waxing phase of the moon in Chaitra month (March – April). It is celebrated as a Hindu New Year in regions such as Gujarat, Maharashtra, Karnataka, and Andhra Pradesh. The other is Vijaya Dashmi- the 10th day of Shukla Paksha of Ashwin month. The Diwali or Kartik Shukla Pratipada is the half muhurta. Each second of these days are extremely favourable since the Sun and the Moon are at their most exalted positions. Hence, this day is chosen for buying gold or investing in valuable items such as property or weddings, gruh pravesh (house warming).
There is a lot of significance of Akshay Tritiya. It is the day when Satyug ended and Treta Yug began. It is also said that Ved Vyas began reciting Mahabharata. Another legend says that the river Ganga descended to the Earth. It is also believed on this day, Sudama visited his childhood friend Krishna in Dwarka, and Sudama was blessed with unlimited wealth. Kubera also received his position as “Lord of wealth” on this day.
In the Jain community, it is said that Lord Rishabhdev, the first tirthankara ended his one-year-long fast by consuming sugarcane juice. This day is also referred to as Varshi Tapa.
This day also holds significance as Lord Krishna provided the Pandavas with Akshaya Patra when Pandavas went to exile.
This day also holds great significance as people offer “Til Tarpan” to their ancestors.
Akshay Tritiya also holds a lot of importance as Lord Parshuram, the sixth incarnation of Lord Ram (Vishnu) was born on this day. Parshuram means Ram holding an Axe. He is one of the ten avatars of Lord Vishnu which includes Matsya Avatar, Kurma Avatar, Varaha Avatar, Narsimha, Vamana, Parshuram, Rama, Krishna, Balaram, and Kalki. Lord Parshuram is believed to be immortal, and it is said he will reappear in Kali Yuga as Kalki’s Guru.
Lord Parshuram was born to sage Jamadagni and Renuka at a time when the Earth was overwhelmed with evil and great sins were committed. He was the great-grandson of Bhrigu Rishi. He is said to carry various traits such as aggression, warfare, valour, serenity, prudence, and patience. He was a devotee of Lord Shiva who gave him his weapon Parashu (axe) after getting pleased by Parshuram’s strict penance.
There are many misconceptions associated with Lord Parshuram such as he is considered as Kshatriya hater and be-header of his mother. But several instances in Mahabharata suggest otherwise. He was the imparter of warfare and Vedic education to Karna, Shalya, and Virat. He was also the guru of Dronacharya and Bhishma who educated Pandavas and Kauravas. When Amba, a Kshatriya princess, wanted to avenge Bhisma for being unfair, Lord Parshuram was the one who gave her justice.
A Twitter account goes by the name YoungnDharmic who in a short but informative video told various stories of Lord Parshuram and busted some misconceptions associated with him.
Today on Parshuram Janmostsav, I wanted to address some of the infamous misconceptions assiocated with him, 1) the 'Kshatriya Hater and Genocider' 2) Beheader of his mother.
— YoungnDharmic (@youngndharmic) May 14, 2021
Legend says that King Kartavirya Arjuna visited the hermitage of Jamadagni, where he and his army was fed with offerings from Kamadhenu, the divine cow. The king demanded that he be given the cow, but Jamadagni refused. Upon the refusal, the king wad fumed with anger and sent his soldiers to take the cow. When the conflict arose, the king chopped off Jamadagni’s head. When Parshuram returned to his hermitage, he was told of the incident. In revenge, Lord Parshuram chopped off a thousand arms of the kind and finished the entire clan of the Kartavirya Arjun with the axe given to him by Lord Shiva and gets back the divine cow.
In Hindu literature, he is depicted as a man with two hands carrying an axe. The Agni Purana portrays him with four hands, carrying an axe, bow, arrow, and sword.
Today also marks the birthday of Basavanna, a 12th Century poet and philosopher, social reformer, and the founder of the Lingayat tradition. This festival is observed as a holiday, traditionally observed by people living in Karnataka, and parts of Telangana, Maharashtra, and Andhra Pradesh. On this day, people recite his teachings that define a new aspect of life.
He was the supporter of casteless society where he believed that everyone should have an equal opportunity. He established Anubhava Mantapa. It was the first religious parliament in the world which was an academy of mystics, saints, and philosophers of the Lingayat faith.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi also took to Twitter to wish everyone Basava Jayanti. He Tweeted “On the special occasion of Basava Jayanthi, I bow to Jagadguru Basaveshwara. His noble teachings, particularly the emphasis on social empowerment, harmony, brotherhood, and compassion continue to inspire several people”.
On the special occasion of Basava Jayanthi, I bow to Jagadguru Basaveshwara. His noble teachings, particularly the emphasis on social empowerment, harmony, brotherhood and compassion continue to inspire several people.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) May 14, 2021
Let us all celebrate this auspicious day with great zeal and positivity!
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