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Why is Adhik Month important and how to do the Puja?

Importance and Significance of Adhik Maas

In every third lunar year, the lunar calendar adds an extra month to its list and makes the calendar comprise thirteen months. This thirteenth month is known as the Adhik Maas and plays a very significant role in the lives of the Hindus. This is added to the lunar calendar when the Surya Sankranti and the Amavasya tithi coincide. In the Indian states like Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat and Karnataka, this month is added to the lunar calendar during the new moon or when there is no moon or Amavasya in the sky. However, in the North Indian states, this month takes place when there is a full moon or Purnima.

Lord Vishnu is the Lord of this month and hence, it is also known as the Purushottam Maas. There are many legendary stories behind this month and its significance. However, the one behind the nomenclature of this month as the Purushottam Maas is very significant. It is believed that the other 12 months in the Lunar Calendar were assigned to 12 Gods. However, the Adhik Maas was not assigned to any and hence, popular as Mal Maas.

Therefore, this Adhik Month felt bad and went to Lord Vishnu for a solution. Lord Vishnu felt pity on him and made it assigned to Himself. And from that time, it was known as the Purushottam Maas. This is the month when humans become spiritually divine through the worship of Lord Vishnu. This worship gives pace to self-revaluation, self-development, self-reflection, self-assessment, introspection and self-retrospection.

Worshipping Lord Vishnu:  

The worship of Lord Vishnu is done through a proper ritual in the month. Following strict rituals, vrat or fasting and doing charity work in this time always bears positive fruit. It is a very good idea to donate clothes and food to those who need them. However, the most important aspect of the puja is the fast. Throughout this month of Adhik, people have to keep a fast from the first day to the last.

It is a must that they wake up between 4 am to 6 am which is known as the Brahma Muhurta. Then you will have to take a bath and perform the ablutions. Once that is done, you need to place an idol or the painting of Lord Vishnu or Narayan and Goddess Lakshmi. Then you must perform the Shodashopachara pooja. Although this Sodashopachara pooja is very useful for the Adhik month Vishnu puja, if you are not quite aware of it and comfortable with this, you can do the normal puja.

When you keep the fast, you must break the fast with only Sattvik or pure vegetarian food. There should be not a single trace of impurities and the food must be prepared carefully. It should be restricted to milk, nuts, fruits, vegetables and grains. Maintaining these rituals religiously will certainly bring positive results and highly meritorious outcomes.