Ekadashi fasting is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and is observed on the eleventh day of a fortnight in a traditional Hindu lunar calendar. There are two Ekadashis in a Hindu month. Fasting on Ekadasi is considered highly beneficial by Vishnu devotees. The dates of Ekadashi in May 2010 are May 9 & 10 and May 24.
The Ekadashi on May 9 is the Smarta Ekadasi and on May 10, 2010 is Bhagavat or Vaishnava Ekadasi. This is a single Ekadasi but observed on different days in different regions due to the difference in sunrise time.
The Ekadashi on May 24, 2010 is known as Mohini Ekadasi.
The preparation for fasting on Ekadasi day begins on the Dasami day – the day before Ekadasi or the tenth day in a traditional lunar calendar.
On the Ekadashi day, devotees observe complete fast. The day is meant for hearing religious discourses, performing pujas and spending time in temples.
There are also several Vishnu devotees who do not observe total fast. They avoid grains especially rice and consume fruits, nuts and milk.
The fasting comes to an end on the Dwadashi day, the 12th day in a lunar calendar, with the consuming of food cooked in one’s house.
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