Papmochani Ekadashi: Redemption of sins
The word pap means sin and mochini means relief, thus Papamochani means relief from sins. In Hinduism this day has a completely different significance than many other festivals as those who believe in god, observe this day and ask forgiveness from gods for their sins done knowingly or unknowingly. This fast is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and it is said that whoever keeps this fast will get relieved from all their sins. There is an interesting legend behind this. According to it, the mythology book says that an Apasara named Manju Ghosha attracted Sage Medhavi and made him marry her. But after some year she wanted to return to Devalokam and this was denied by the sage. The Apsara didn’t listen to this and in his anger, sage cursed her and she became a witch. He told her that she can remove this curse only if she keeps fast on Papmochani Ekadashi and worship Lord Vishnu who is the operator of the world. The sage too decided to keep this fast because he too had committed a sin by marrying her. Hence, since then the day is marked for getting blessed by the god and get rid of all the sins done by the man.
Rituals to be observed on Papamochani Ekadashi
Devotees keep a fast from the sunset of earlier day. They are allowed to take only satvik food and avoid normal food. The devotees get up early in the morning and should take a holy dip in the nearby river. The devotees also worship Lord Vishnu and chant mantras. A sacred feast, flowers and incense are offered to Lord Vishnu. At many places Vishnu Yag is also organized and devotees pray the lord with Vishnu Sahastrnam and other shlokas to praise the lord and forgive their sins.