Mokshada Ekadashi – Beginning of Bhagavad Gita
Mokshada Ekadashi is also celebrated on the same day as Gita Jayanti and hence it is also considered as another name of the same. On this day, Arjuna received the Bhagavad Gita verses from Lord Krishna. It is said to be the birthday of Bhagavad Gita. It is believed that by reciting the Bhagavad Gita on this day, a person can liberate the souls of his ancestors from hell to heaven. This is the reason, this day got its name Mokshada Ekadashi. Usually people fast on this day and offer puja and aarti to get the blessings of the almighty. The word Mokshada literally means that which can offer salvation and make one free from the life and rebirth circle of the world. The listening of Gita on this day leads the soul to the state of salvation.
Rituals of Mokshada Ekadashi :
Many people who cannot observe fast for the whole day choose to do partial fasting. They prefer to eat only vegetarian food like fruits, milk and nuts and avoid eating cooked food like rice and other items. On this day, Lord Krishna is worshipped to get moksha after death and also to avail moksha for the departed souls in the family. This is observed during the 11th day of Margashirsha month which falls during the November and December period.
There is a legend behind this Mokshada Ekadashi. As per the puranas, the King Vaikanasa had a dream that his father was tortured in hell. When he called his advisors and discussed the issue with them, he came to know that it was due to the sins committed by his father when he was alive. As a remedy to all this, he decided to perform fast and offer puja to Lord Krishna on the day of Mokshada Ekadashi. Thereafter, pleased with his devotion, the Gods relieved the King's father from hell and he was taken to heaven. Even to this day, people perform special puja of the Bhagavad Gita on this day and it is said that reciting the Gita on this day will bring in good fortunes and get moksha after death.