2020 Bhishma Panchak Begins

date  2020
Ashburn, Virginia, United States

Bhishma Panchak Begins
Panchang for Bhishma Panchak Begins
Choghadiya Muhurat on Bhishma Panchak Begins

Bhishma Panchak Vrat

Bhishma Panchaka Vrat begins on the eleventh day, i.e Kartika Suddha Ekadashi, also known as Devutthana Ekadashi, of the Shukla Paksha during the Kartik month of the Hindu calendar. The Vrat gets its name from Bhishma of the Mahabharata. The fast is observed for five days which begins on the Ekadashi Vrat by remembering Bhismadev and ends on Purnima. During the Bhishma Panchak Vrat, one should avoid eating grains for the whole month and consume just milk or water for the last five days. Bhishma Panchaka is also known as Vishnu Panchaka.

Significance of Bhishma Panchak

Bhishma Panchak is observed for the last five days of the Kartik month of the Hindu Calendar, that begins with the Ashvin Purnima or Sharad Purnima and ends with Kartika Purnima. Hari Prabodhini Ekadashi is observed as the first day of Bhishma Panchak. 

Lord Shri Krishna had narrated the importance of Bhishma Panchak Vrat to Bhishma, who then observed this vrat for these five days before leaving his physical body for the heavenly abode, after the conclusion of Kurukshetra yudh in the Mahabharata. 

Devotees observe fast during these five days for the attainment of Moksha and for the redemption of their sins. Believers also fast during this time for gaining good health and for the health of their children. 

The greatness of Bhishma Panchak Fast is described in the Padma Purana. It is explained that this month of Kartika, is very dear to Lord Shri Hari, and bathing in the early morning during this months helps devotees attain the benefits of bathing in all pilgrimage places. 

Kartika vratinam vipra yathokta karinam naram
Yama dutah palayante simham drstva yatha gajah
Srestham visnu vipra tat tulya na satam makhah
Krtva fratum urje svargyam vaikuntham kartika vrati

- Padma Purana

The rituals for the Bhishma Panchak and the offerings to be made during this vrat are mentioned in the Bhishma Panchak Katha in the Garuda Purana. 

The Bhsihma Panchak is also known as mahabharat Bhishma panchak or Vishnu Panchak. The second day of the five days long Bhishma Panchak is celebrated as Tulsi Vivah, and the fifth day is celebrated as the Kartika Purnima

Bhishma Panchak Vrat Vidhi

As mentioned in the ancient Hindu scripture, Garuda Purana, special offerings should be made to the Lord during the Bhishma Panchak. 

First day, Dev Utthana Ekadashi

Offer Lotus flowers at the feet of the Lord

Second day, Tulsi Vivah

Offer Bilva leaves on the thigh of the Lord

Third day, Vishveshwara Vrat

Offer scents (gandha) at the navel of the Lord

Fourth day, Manikarnika Snan

Offer Java flowers on the shoulder of the Lord

Fifth day, Kartika Purnima

Offer Malati flowers to the head of the Lord

It is also believed that taking a bath in the Ganges or any other holy rivers every day of the five day Vishnu Panchak, and offer tarpana to the Bhishmadeva by chanting the following mantra-

  • Tarpana

“om vaiyaghra padya gotraya
samkrti pravaraya ca
aputraya dadamyetat
salilam bhismavarmane”

  • Arghya

santanoratmajaya ca
arghyam dadami bhismaya
ajanma brahmacarine”

  • Pranam

“om bhismah santanavo birah
satyavadi jitendriyah
putrapautrocitam kriyam”

It is believed that by following the fast and puja vidhi on these five days, one can attain the path to salvation.