28- Vara Lakshmi Vrata-1.

    LORD SHIVA describes the glory of this Vrata in the Skanda Purana.

It is performed by a woman whose husband is still living.

Maha Lakshmi is the abode of all auspiciousness and prosperity.

This worship of Maha Lakshmi is done to obtain good progeny, and for the health and long life of the husband.

    The Vrata is observed on the Friday immediately preceding the full moon day of the month of Sravan (August-September).

After a purificatory bath, the lady should put on a clean, fresh cloth and make a mandala with the drawing of a lotus upon it.

A kalasha filled with rice and topped with fresh mango leaves, a coconut and cloth are placed on the mandala and Lakshmi is invoked therein.

Fresh grains are used in the worship as they convey the idea of growth and prosperity.

After the worship of the kalasha, follows the worship of Ganesha, then the worship of the raksha or the sacred thread.

Now the main worship of Vara Lakshmi begins and the raksha is worshipped a second time.

It is then tied to the right hand of the lady.

 After the worship various auspicious articles are given as charity to some deserving lady whose husband is alive :- This lady is also fed with dainties.

Swami Sivananda
 To be continued  .....

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