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Kartik Vrat – Importance of Kartik Month in North India

Kartik is the eighth month in a traditional Hindu calendar followed in North India and most of the month-long rituals are dedicated to Lord Krishna. Kartik month is considered highly auspicious by both Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva devotees. The importance of Kartik month is mentioned in the Skanda and Padma Purana. The most important ritual in the month is taking bath before sunrise in River Ganga known as Kartik Snan. It must be noted that there is no major monthly fast but women observe certain food restrictions.

In some regions after the ritual bath in the morning, women make idol of Lord Krishna and other gods in Hindu pantheon and worship them.

Women consider themselves as Gopis in Vrindavan and worship Lord Krishna in the month. During the first fortnight of the month women consider Lord Krishna as a child and sing him lullabies and worship Him in His child form. During the second half of the fortnight Lord Krishna is worshipped as a young man and women perform the Tulsi Vivah during the last four days of the month.

Another important part of the month-long Kartik month rituals include reading Kartik Mahatmya (glory of Kartik month) from Padma Purana and Skanda Purana.

The month is also noted for numerous fasts and rituals including Karva chauth, Govatsa Dwadashi, Govardhan Puja, Annakut, Nag Nathaiya, Chhath Puja, Gopashtami, Tulsi Vivah and Kartik Purnima.

The important festivals in the month include Dhanteras, Yam Trayodashi, Narak Chaturdashi, Diwali and Bhai Dooj.