Significance Of Sharad Purnima & Kojagari Lakshmi Puja 

x06-sharad-purnima.jpg.pagespeed.ic._075IPE1WgSharad Purnima or Kojagari Purnima is a day of great significance for the Hindus. Sharad Purnima is the full moon day of the Hindu lunar month of Ashwin. It is also known as the Kaumudi celebration and it is believed that on this day the moon showers elixir or Amrit on Earth through its beams. Sharad Purnima ushers in the Sharad season according to the Hindu beliefs which marks the beginning of autumn. On the day of Sharad Purnima it is said that the moonlight has magical healing properties and that is why it is known to shower ‘Amrit Varsha’ (Elixir shower).

Interestingly, it is also believed to be the day on which Goddess Lakshmi is said to have been born. That is why in some parts of India, people worship Goddess Lakshmi on the day of Sharad Purnima which is also known as Kojagari Lakshmi puja. It is mainly celebrated by the Bengali community and also in a few other Eastern states of India. It is a custom to stay awake for the whole night on Sharad/ Kojagari Purnima to receive the blessings of Goddess Lakshmi.


Sharad Purnima: Night Of The Elixir

On Sharad Purnima, the moon and the Earth are very close to each other. The rays of the moon have some healing properties which is said to nourish the body and soul of an individual. That is why food kept in the moonlight on Sharad Purnima is considered equal to Amrit (the immortal drink) or elixir. Hence, people in the Eastern regions follow a custom of preparing kheer and keeping it open under the moonlight throughout the night of Sharad Purnima. The next day it is consumed by all the members of the family as it becomes ‘Amrit’ according to local beliefs.


Kojagari Lakshmi Puja

Kojagari Lakshmi puja is celebrated by the Bengalis with great enthusiasm. Kojagari literally means who is awake? It is believed that Goddess Lakshmi comes down on Earth and visits every house to see who is awake at night to welcome Her. The women who fast and keep awake at night on Kojagari Purnima are blessed by the Goddess with wealth and prosperity. That is why most women of the Bengali households keep a fast on Kojagari Purnima and worship Goddess Lakshmi. The house is cleaned and beautiful ‘Alpana’ (rangoli) is made with rice paste along with the footprints of the Goddess. Food offerings are made in front of the idol. Some households also organise singing and bhajan programmes to keep awake at night.


Other Rituals

In Odisha, Sharad Purnima is also known as Kumar Purnima and Lord Kartikeya is worshipped by the unmarried girls. Girls who want to get a handsome husband like Kartikeya take bath early in the morning, offer food to the Sun and keep a fast throughout the day. In the evening when the moon rises they offer food and prayers to the moon. People who keep a fast on Sharad Purnima are supposed to break their fast at night by eating rice flakes and cold milk. The practice of drinking cold milk during this fast has its origins in science. Sharad ritu brings in very hot days and cool nights. During this weather, ‘pitta’ or acidity becomes predominant in our body. Consumption of milk & rice flakes is a good remedy for ‘pitta’. Thus, it is customary to consume cold milk and rice flakes on Sharad Purnima.


Significance Of Sharad/Kojagari Purnima

Thus, Sharad Purnima or Kojagari Purnima is an important Hindu festival. It marks the end of monsoon and ushers in the season of autumn. The moon is the central figure of all the festivities surrounding Sharad Purnima. It is the celebration of the day when the moon gets closest to the Earth. Along with that worshipping Goddess Lakshmi signifies the importance of good harvests and prosperity in the lives of the farmers. They seek blessings of the divine power to achieve good results for the hard work they have put in. So, what are you waiting for? Get ready with your bowl of kheer and see it turn into elixir overnight!

Source: boldsky