Posted by Champaklal Dajibhai Mistry on July 3, 2001

Yesterday in the Today's Prayer on Message Board of this website a prayer on vrat identified its ultimate aim of achieving satya. From times immemorial, humans have been performing vrat to propitiate devo to attain their deepest wishes for themselves, their families and all others. Gujarati and Prajapati women confirm their total shraddha in Paarvati-devi by observing the Jayaa-Paarvati vrat for 5 days starting today 13th day of Ashaadh sud.....May Paarvati-devi grant them saubhaagya, progeny and sukh-shaanti......

Jayaa is another name for Paarvati-devi, the shakti and wife of Shankar-bhagvaan given by Mahaa-maayaa at the start of a creation cycle. At that time Mahaa-maayaa told Shiv-bhagvaan to respect and care for Paarvati-devi otherwise he would be just a shell of a man. If this is the stipulation given by Mahaa-maayaa to Shankar-bhagvaan then it would also be the same stipulation for us ordinary mortals of man. That means: to us ordinary man - you are nothing without your wife. Mahaa-maayaa is also known as Bhuneshvari-maataa and Prakruti. She is the first manifestation of Brhmah. Bhuneshvari-maataa is Brhmah and Brahmah is Bhuneshvari-maataa. Without Brhmah Bhuneshvari-maataa cannot exist and becomes inert.

Jayaa-Paarvati vrat is performed by women for the sustenance, integrity and intactness of their married life and to have progeny for continuation of their husbands' lineage thus upholding the needs of their husband's pitruo's happy existence in their pitru-lok.

This vrat starts on the 13th day of the sud portion month of Ashaadh and lasts for five days till the 3rd of vad Ashaadh . Sud is the first 15 days of lunar month and vad is the second half of the lunar month. The following is the daily vidhio (rituals and rites) and celebrations observed by the woman doing the Jayaa-Paarvati vrat for the five days.

A woman doing this vrat gets up in the muhurat prior to sunrise which is one and half hour before sunrise. After taking the morning bath, she performs the pujaa of Paarvati-devi. She fasts for the day eating only once a day. She will not eat salt and also optional molasses in her food during the vrat. All day she performs bhakti to Umaa-Mahesh. On the fifth and final day of the vrat she has a celebration which is also a group or communal celebration. On the fifth day she invites 3 or 5 married women for a meal as per the shaastra and gives them offering of articles which are related to and signatures of sustained good married life. This offering is made as per the aarthic (prosperity) capacity of the woman performing the vrat and in the true spirit of offering as laid out in the shaastra that no offering is too small or too big if made with shraddha in Bhagvaan. On the fifth day she performs bhakti to Paarvati-maataa during all day and night. On the night of the fifth day she stays awake all night performing bhakti in the form of bhajano and garbaa in adoration of both Shankar-bhagvaan and Paarvati-devi.

This vrat is performed for twenty years. Once the vrat is committed to then the woman has to observe vrat and celebrate as noted above every five years for the first day with the meals and offering to 3 to 5 married women.

The vrat-kathaa of Jayaa-Paarvati vrat is to be read and listened to during the performance of the vrat is as follows:

" Once upon a time, in a small village lived a braahman by name of Vaaman and his wife Satya. They were both very dhaarmic and abided by the four purushaarth of life and the varnaa-dharma of braahmin. They had a happy life together with adequate health and wealth. However, they were suffering from the dukh of being childless and longed for a child to carry on the lineage of the family gotra.

One day Naarad-muni came to visit Vaaman and Satya with his famous chanting of jap of Naaraayan...Naaraayan....Narayan. The couple received Naarad-muni as their guest as per the tradition and stipulations of shaastra. After performing pujaa of Naaradji, Vaman shared his pain of being childless with Naaradji.

Upon hearing the misfortune of Vaaman and Satya, Naaradji said: "Hey braahman! Go to the jungle located south of here. In this jungle there are lots of Bili-patra trees. Covered under a pile of Bili-patra leaves are the murtio of Shiv-Paarvati lying unworshipped for a long time. Go and find these murtio and consecrating them with a bath reinstall them as per the shaastra. Then both of you perform pujaa with devotion, adoration and with your chitt fully focused on Umaa-Mahesh.. The guileless and kindhearted Sadaa-Shiv will certainly share your pain and fulfill your mano-kaamnaa (wish from your anta-karan) you have expressed to me because of your bhakti full of intense love, affection, inclination and shraddhaa towards Shiv-Paarvati.

Naradji went on his way after advising Vaman and Satya in this manner.

The next day Vaaman and Satya headed to the jungle with all the necessary items for performing the re-installation of the Shiv-Paarvati murtio and performing pujaa as suggested by Naarad-muni. They started searching for the Shiv-Paarvati murtio under Bili-patra trees. After a long search they found the murtio hidden under a pile of Bili-patra leaves as described by Naaradji. Vaaman and Satya felt enormously happy upon realizing the truth in Naarad-muni's advice. Vaaman started clearing the space under the tree and around the tree trunk for the installation of the murtio. Satya went to fetch water from the nearby pond. Satya sprinkled the water over the land cleaned up by Vaaman. Then Vaaman gave a bath to the murtio and installed the murtio on a paatalo (a wooden seat-platform used for sitting and worshipping purposes) placed against the tree trunk. Vaaman performed the murti-sthaapnaa as per the shaastra and then performed pujaa with all the vidhio stipulated by the shaastra including offering of Bili-patra. Then Vaaman and Satya prayed to Umaa-Mahesh and expressed their wishes for a son.

Vaaman and Satya were determined to propitiate Shiv-Paarvati and obtain a boon for a son. So they build a hut at that place to live their and perform daily pujaa, bhakti and tapas till Umaa-Mahesh were propitiated. They offered their pujaa, aarti and aaraadhnaa to Shiv-Paarvati every day in the morning and evening.

Thus Vaaman and Satya performed aaraadhnaa for five years but Bhagvaan did not propitiate. Both of them were perplexed at this and started wondering if this bhakti will not bear fruits.

Vaaman used to daily collect Bili-patra for the pujaa of Mahaa-dev and the flowers that grew nearby. Today he wished to offer various other flowers that grew in the forest to Mahaa-dev during the pujaa. He went out in the forest and harvested a lot of flowers in a chhaabdi ( a shallow basket woven with bamboo leaves). While he was returning with harvested flowers he stepped on a snake lying hidden under a pile of leaves. The snake bit him in the leg. Vaaman fell on the ground with a painful cry saying "Hey Mahaa-dev". Slowly the poison started spreading throughout his whole body and after a while Vaaman died.

Vaaman' s wish and desire of his mind remained in his mind.

Vaaman used to harvest flowers and Bili-patra from nearby his hut daily for his pujaa. But today Vaaman had gone out in the forest to harvest various other flowers and thus had died of a snake-bite. On the other side, Vaaman' s wife was anxiously waiting for her husband just like a chatak waits eagerly for rain to satisfy its thirst. A chatak is a bird with a hole in its throat so that it can only drink water from the falling rain. As Vaaman had not returned after a long time from harvesting the flowers in the forest, his wife Satya started worrying and ultimately went out to search for him.

In her search at last she found her husband dead under a tree. She saw a snake moving around the body and at once knew that her husband had died of the poison from the snake-bite. Satya sat beside her husband's dead body with a broken and shocked heart and started wailing and lamenting loudly with a lot of pain.

Paarvati-devi in her abode in the dev-lok heard Satya's painful wailing and lamenting. At that instant Paarvati-devi manifested herself in the form of van-devi (forest deity) at that place. Satya saw splendour and luster on the face of the face of van-devi and immediately realized that this van-devi has visited her out of reverence to afford salvation to her. Satya did namaskaar to van-devi and fell at her feet and started to repeatedly appeal her with humility that her saubhagya (married status) be preserved intact by reviving her husband to life.

Paarvati-devi, who had come in the form of van-devi, immediately motioned her hand in a wave form over the dead body of Vaaman and chaitaniya entered the dead braahman and he became alive again. As he started to wake up he started to shake himself as if out of a long sleep. As soon as he saw van-devi, realization of the entire incidence dawned on him and he fell at van-devi's feet and performed namaskaar.

Mataaji place her hand on Vaaman' s bowed head and gave a boon saying "Hey braahman couple! We were in this forest in unworshipped state and you two found us and worshipped us with pujaa, aarti and aaraadhnaa and thus I am very pleased, contended and satiated. Therefore ask from me a boon of whatever you wish?"

Immediately Satya said " Maa, bestow on us the sukh of a offspring and progeny.

Van-devi said " Ta-tha-stu (amen = so be it). You will definitely attain the sukh of an offspring and progeny but to attain this sukh you will have to do one thing.

Satya replied " Maa, I will do whatever you will ask".

Van-devi said to Satya " If you will perform Jayaa-Paarvati vrat then my boon will fructify as per your wish and desire.

Satya agreed to perform the vrat. Thereby Paarvatiji, who had manifested in the form of van-devi, informed Satya of the dignity, glory and majesty of the Jayaa-Paarvati vrat, vidhio to be performed, the method of celebrating the vrat, the fruits of the vrat and other related matters of the vrat. Paarvatiji added that the strength, power, glory, grace and effectiveness of this vrat is so great that the saubhagya of the woman who performs this vrat will stay intact, will have offspring and progeny and will pass her life in sukh-shaanti.

Saying thus van-devi disappeared.

Vaaman and Satya prepared to return home full of joy and delighted with the boon of a son and the instructions and guidance on achieving the boon. While returning they took with themselves the murtio of Shiv-Paarvati. When they returned to their home they installed the murtio with full sthaapanaa- vidhio as per shaastra in an pavitra (auspicious) place in their home. They thereafter offered pujaa, aarti and aaraadhnaa to Shiv-Paarvati. every morning and evening and continued doing bhakti.

When the holy 13th day of Ashaadh sud dawned Satya commenced the Jayaa-Paarvati vrat and performed all stipulated vidhio and completed the vrat on the 3rd day of Ashaadh vad with the stipulated celebration on the last day. In due course Satya became pregnant and in the following year when she performed the vrat again she had an exceeding tender, soft and handsome son swinging in the cradle.

Both Vaaman and Satya attained sukh-shaanti in all aspects of their lives due to Jayaa-Paarvati vrat.

This is the strength, power, glory, grace and effectiveness of the Jayaa-Paarvati vrat.

Jayaa-Paarvati vrat is a giver of welfare.

"Hey Jayaa-Paarvati-maa! As your boon fructified for Vaman and Satya so may your boon fructify for those who perform your vrat and also for those who listen to this vrat-kathaa.


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