--> Skip to main content

Vishnu Vrata

Vishnu Vrata is an austerity practiced for pleasing Bhagavan Vishnu. As described in the Hindu scriptures, it is observed in five different ways. In the first method, an image of Bhagavan Vishnu is drawn on a lotus. Grains soaked in ghee and twigs are offered into the fire to the accompaniment of mantras.

In the second method, one fasts throughout a year on the twelfth day of the waxing phase of moon (shukla paksha dwadashi tithi), making gifts of a cow, a calf and gold.

In the third method, the austerity is practiced for a year, commencing with bathing for four days from the second day of the waxing phase of moon (shukla paksha dwitiya tithi) in Pausha (December – January), in water mixed with mustard, sesame, vacha and a collection of specified herbs. The devotee worships Sri Krishna, Achyuta, Hrishikesha ad Keshava, on those days with similarly sanctified water. He offers the sanctified water to the crescent moon on the four days as above to Sashi, Chandra, Sashanka and Nisapati, respectively, and eats only in the night while the moonlight lasts.

In the fourth method, one bathes early in the morning for four months commencing with Ashadha (June – July), makes a gift of a cow on the full moon day in Kartika (October – November) and feeds Brahmins. This will confer on the devotee the world of Vishnu.

In the fifth method, one fasts on the fourth day in Chaitra (March – April) and worships the different forms of Bhagavan Vishnu.

Vishnu Vrata is different from the vratas dedicated to Bhagavan Vishnu like Ekadasi. One method of Vishnu Vrata coincides with the period of sleep of Bhagavan Vishnu (Chatur Maas) (Ashada to Kartika), a period falling between Sayana Dwadashi and Prabodhini Ekadashi.