Kedar Gauri Vrat
Kedara Gauri Vrat is the most celebrated religious observance in Southern India, especially in major parts of Tamil Nadu. This Hindu festival coincides with the main day of Diwali or Laxmi Puja. It is strictly observed by the ardent devotees of Lord Shiva and can be concluded by anyone irrespective of sex or caste.
It is a 21 day long fasting observance which commences on Ashtami (eighth day) of Shukla Paksha in the Tamil month of Purattasi and ends on Amavasya, the main day of Deepawali. Now days, devotees usually perform this fasting on single day i.e. the last day of Amavasya.
SIGNIFICANCE OF KEDAR GAURI VRAT
Kedara Gauri Vrat, also known as, Kedareshwar Vrat is deemed as a religiously important observance for fulfilling all your wishes and desires. It is believed that several Gods and Goddesses performed this fast to get the desired results.
As per the most popular belief, this Vrat was performed by Goddess Parvati. A follower of Lord Shiva trusted and prayed to him excluding Parvati. This, in turn, infuriated the Goddess and she prayed to Rishi Gautama for a solution to become an integral part of Shiva's body who advised her to observe a strict Kedar Vrat for 21 days with complete devotion. Pleased by this, Lord Shiva granted Goddess Parvati with his left part and this form of his came to be known as 'Ardhanareeswara'. From that day onwards, this day was observed as Kedar Gowri Vrat as Goddess Gauri herself observed the fast to please Lord Shiva.
According to other significant legends, Lord Vishnu when performed this Vrat, he became the king of Vaikunta. Brahma, with this Vrat obtained the Hamsa vehicle. Also, Punyavathi and Bhagyavati garnered huge wealth after observing this fast. So, it is believed that those who perform this fast with deep devotion are blessed with a long life, health, prosperity and wealth.