by Mahanidhi Madan Gopal Das
To confirm the connection between Radharani, the Karttika vrata and the uniqueness of this month, Sri Rupa Goswamipada says Radha is Karttika-devi, Urjadevi, Urjesvari, and the Kartika-devata.
KARTTIKA VRATA—SIX INCONCEIVABLE BENEFITS
- The benefits of other vows last for only one life, but the benefits from a Karttika vow last for a 100 lives, vratasyoktam phalam janma satanugam (Skanda Purana: Hari Bhakti Vilasa 16.45)
- In Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu, Sri Rupa Goswamipada cites the Padma Purana to prove the special effect of observing Karttika in Vraja-dhama:
“Sri Krishna gives sense enjoyment or liberation, but never bhakti to those worshiping Him outside of Vraja Dhama, bhuktim-muktim-harir-dadyad-arcito-anyatra-sevinam. However, one will quickly obtain Hari bhakti by worshiping Damodara in Mathura/Vrndavana during Karttika—harer-bhaktir-labhyate- kartike-naraih-mathurman-sakrd-api-damodara-pujanat.”
Sri Jiva Goswamipada comments: “By the power of just once worshiping Sri Krishna in Mathura/Vrndavana during Karttika, even an UNQUALIFIED person will OBTAIN BHAVA, love for Krishna—mathura-karttikayoh-sangame-pujanam-ghatate-tada-yogyata-virahiten-api-vastu-prabhavat-prapyate- eveti-bhava.”
- The Skanda Purana says, “The Karttika vrata is always dear to Sri Kesavaji, sarvada-kesava-priyah. If during Karttika one performs even a few pious deeds for the pleasure of Vishnu/Krishna, one will derive indestructible benefits, kincit-kriyate-punyam-visnum-uddisya-karttike, tad-aksayam-bhavet-sarvam-satyoktam-tava-narada.”
- Once Sri Rupa-manjari said, “O Krishna! You delight the world with Your flute by singing the glories Kartika-devi Radha, the topmost form of pure love, prema mūrti-vara kārtika devī, kīrti gāna mukharī-kṛta vaṁśam.” (Uttkalika Vallari 11)
- The Padma Purana (Karttika-mahatmya) says, “Of the twelve yearly months, Kartika is the most beloved of Krishna—dvādaśāsv- api -māseṣu / kārtikaḥ -kṛṣṇa-vallabhaḥ.”
“If one performs even a little Vishnu/Krishna puja during Kartika, one will definitely attain Vaikuntha—sampūjito- viṣṇur -alpa- dadāti / vaiṣṇavaṁ -lokam -niścitaṁ.”
“Bhagavan Sri Hari, the Master controller, will be pleased if one offers a ghee lamp, or even just relights another person’s extinguished lamp, and He will give one a good destination—dīpenāpi -hi –yatrāsau / prīyate -harir –īśvaraḥ / sugatiṁ- ca –dadāty- eva / para- dīpa –prabodhanāt.”
- Five Liberation Vows
In Hari Bhakti Vilasa (17), Sri Sanatana Goswami quotes the Padma Purana (Uttara-khanda chapter 115), wherein Bhagavan Sri Krishna says:
“If one performs these FIVE VOWS for the entire month of Karttika, one will attain liberation (mukti) to the spiritual realm:
- Stay awake both Karttika Ekadasi nights (Hari-jāgaraṇam).
- Daily sunrise bath (just before sunrise is best).
- Caring for a Tulasi plant. (Daily watering, bathing, puja, plucking leaves and manjaris, praising, respecting and circling).
- Finishing a charitable work previously started i.e. building a temple, digging a well.
- Daily offering ghee lamps (dīpas).”
Radharani Month Karttika Vrata ki jai! Kartika-devi Sri Radha ki jai! Jai Jai Sri Radhe!