Magha Purnima is a significant Hindu religious festival that falls on the full moon day (Purnima) of the ‘Magha’ month as per Hindu calendar. According to the Gregorian calendar, this day corresponds to the months of January and February. In Hinduism, Purnima is regarded as a very important day for performing spiritual and religious events. Magha Purnima is considered one of the most auspicious out of these Purnimas. On this day, thousands of Hindu devotees perform the ceremonial bath at the Triveni Sangam in Prayag. During this time the famous ‘Kumbh Mela’ and ‘Magha Mela’ also held in which devotees flock from each and every corner of the country. In 2022, Magha Purnima falls on 16th February, Wednesday. 

Significance of Magha Purnima 

Magha Purnima has special significance in both Hinduism and Buddhism. People of both religions celebrate this day on the basis of their own traditions and beliefs. Hindu devotees observe a fast on this day and take a bath in the holy rivers like the Ganges or the Yamuna. It is believed that on the day of Magha Purnima, Lord Vishnu resided in the Ganges, which is also mentioned in the Brahma Vaivarta Purana. A devotee who takes a bath in the Ganges on this day definitely attains Vaikunth Lok, the abode of Lord Vishnu. According to Buddhism, on this day Gautam Buddha had spoken about his impending death, so this day is also celebrated by the propagators of Buddhism.

Magha Purnima Tithi-

Feb 15, 9:43 pm – Feb 16, 10:26 pm

Benefits of Fasting on Magha Purnima-

Magh Purnima is considered as a sacred day for conducting various spiritual and religious rituals. It is believed that on this day the deities come to the earth in human form to bathe, donate and chant. That’s why, bathing in the holy rivers, charity, worship and fasting are done on this day to get rid of all sins and attain salvation or moksha. According to widespread beliefs, the worship done after bathing in the holy rivers on this day helps in “Santaan Prapti” (childbirth). Therefore, Magha Purnima has special significance for the people who are deprived of the happiness of having a child.

Puja Rituals-

  • The devotees should get up early and take a holy dip in any sacred river before sunrise, on the day of Magha Purnima. People who cannot take a holy bath in rivers can take a bath by mixing some drops of Gangajal with water at home.
  • Then the devotees make preparations for performing a Vishnu Puja. Lord Vishnu, Lord Hanuman and the ‘Ishta Devatas’ are worshipped on this day.
  • The worshippers perform the Satyanarayan Puja and recite the Satyanarayan vrat katha with full devotion. Majority of Vishnu temples are adorned with special arrangements on this day, so a lot of devotees visit the temple in the evening.
  • Puja Offerings: banana leaves, sandalwood paste, til, supari, moli, fruits, sweets  flower garlands, incense sticks, oil lamp 
  • Some devotees also fast on Magha Purnima since it is considered rewarding. The people observing a fast can have food only after offering ‘ardhya’ to the moon in the evening. They are allowed to have only one meal a day.
  • It’s very auspicious to donate or do charity activities on this day. People usually donate clothes, food, cereals, ghee, jaggery and fruits to the Brahmins and the poor and needy. It’s a widespread belief that donating “til” (sesame seeds) is regarded as auspicious on this day.
  • In some places, people also do the ritual of offering “tarpan” for the peace of the ancestors or the deceased souls on Magha Purnima. 

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Also read, Basant Panchami 2022- Worship of Goddess Saraswati!

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