Greetings on the auspicious occasion of Akshaya Tritiya. Hey, Akshay Tritiya 2022 is here. And so are all the advertisements for bringing in luck, prosperity, auspiciousness, eternal joy, and everlasting peace by buying the precious yellow metal. So, are you all heading to your favorite jeweler? I have consistently followed this ritual for the past two decades, starting in 2003 for the first time. Who could possibly overcome the allure of “The Auric Ingots?” Haha. Nothing elaborate, but I have always bought something or the other, even if it is a small trinket. Who could possibly overcome the allure of the yellow metal?
However, 2020 and 2021 were different. Very Very different because I never got to even think of getting something. We just prayed with a simple Pooja and thanked the Bhagawan for taking care of us and helping us tide over these testing times. Now, today on this auspicious day, as I performed my daily Pooja, I was reminded of all the shopping expeditions I used to undertake. I wondered how life changes. A thing or activity that was significantly significant changes and takes on a different meaning. So, I decided to do a write-up on all the Pauranic stories associated with Akshay Tritya. Akshay Tritiya, also known as Akha Teej, is celebrated in different parts of India and has various stories related to this day which falls on the Shukla Paksha Tritiya (the third day of the bright half of the month) in the month of Vaishakha. The word Akshaya in Sanskrit means anything that is endless or forever, and hence Akshaya Tritiya is believed to bring good luck.
The longest known epic poem, the Mahabharata, was written by Bhagawan Ganesha as Maharishi Ved Vyasa narrated the whole Mahabharata. As the story goes, Maharishi Ved Vyasa had the complete Mahabharata conceptualized in his head but wanted someone to write it down for him as fast as he could dictate. On Bhagawan Brahma’s advice, Ved Vyasa approached Bhagawan Ganesha and requested him to be his writer. So Bhagawan Ganesh put a condition that Ved Vyasa should at no point take a breather and should be able to keep pace with Ganesha’s pace of writing. So, Ved Vyasa put a counter condition, saying that Ganesha should completely understand the shloka and only then write it down. Writing of this epic poem started on this auspicious day of Akshaya Tritiya after agreeing with each other’s conditions.
The most famous story associated with Akshay Tritiya is the Akshaya Patra, given by Bhagawan Shree Krishna to Draupadi and Pandavas. Bhagawan Shree Krishna visited along with some Maharishis, the Pandavas, during their exile on Shukla Paksha Tritiya of Vaishakha. The Pandavas did not have anything to offer to Krishna Bhagawan and The Maharishis. Draupadi was distraught as they could not do the Atithi sattkar (guest offerings) and pleaded with Krishna to forgive them as there was not even a grain of food to offer to the guests. Krishna Bhagawan looked into the empty bowl and showed a rice grain to Draupadi. He Consumed it and asked Draupadi to recheck the bowl. To everyone’s surprise and happiness, the container was filled with rice. Then Krishna Bhagawan addressed everyone present at the cottage, “Oh my dear Pandavas, whoever offers me anything with love will be accepted, even if it is a small grain or a drop of water. And such people will be blessed with an endless abundance of prosperity and happiness. The bowl thus blessed and consecrated by Bhagawan became known as Akshaya Patra (everlasting, imperishable bowl) and remained with the Pandavas providing them with abundance.
Another parallel story associated with Akshay Tritiya is about Surya Bhagawan blessing Pandavas with a boon in the form of Akshaya Patra on this day.
Another story associated with Akshay Tritiya is the meeting of Lord Krishna and his childhood friend Sudama. Sudhama and his wife faced hard times and lived in abject poverty, whereas Bhagawan Krishna was the King of Mathura, a rich and prosperous empire. Sudhama decides to seek help from his friend and lands at Krishna’s palace at his wife’s suggestion and brings along a fist full of puffed rice as a gift. The Kind and benevolent Krishna treats Sudhama with love and with a lot of respect, fit for a king. Sudhama is overwhelmed and ashamed of all the happenings at the palace and takes leave from Krishna Bhagawan without giving him the bag of puffed rice. But gives it to Krishna Bhagwan when Krishna Bhagawan reminds Sudhama of his favorite puffed rice. However, Sudhama doesn’t ask for any help from Krishna and returns empty-handed, only to be surprised to see his small hut turned into a palace. Thus Sudhama got blessed with abundance on this holy day of Akshay Tritiya.
Bhagawan Parshurama, the sixth Avatar of Bhagawan Vishnu was born on Akshaya Tritiya on Treta Yuga. He is one of the Chiranjeevis (Long-Lived Ones or Immortal Ones), who will appear at the end of the Kali Yuga to be the guru of Vishnu’s tenth and last incarnation, Kalki. Therefore this day is also celebrated as Parshuram Jayanti.
As per the Puranas, the Goddess of food – Annapurna, was born on this auspicious day. Annapurna is one of the avatars of Goddess Parvati. It is said that Devi Annapurna once fed a hungry Shiva who went to the Goddess disguised as a hungry beggar. After eating a stomachful, a satiated Shiva blessed Devi Annapurna that whoever prayed to her would never have food scarcity in their home.
Another story from the Puranas is about the lord of wealth- Kubera, who was bestowed with wealth after praying to Bhagawan Shiva on the day of Akshaya Tritiya.
According to the local folklore, the holy Ganga Mata is known to have descended on earth from the heavens on the day of Akshaya Tritiya.
In most recent times, Jagad guru Adi Shankara recited the Kanaka Dhara Stothra on this day for the sake of the poor couple. When Adi Shankara visited this poor household, the poor couple did not have anything to offer other than a few gooseberries, which they offered with much love and devotion. The couple was blessed with a lot of happiness and prosperity.
Many more beautiful stories are associated with the importance of Akshaya Tritiya in our Vedas and Puranas. Astronomically, the sun and the moon are the most radiant on Akshaya Tritiya day. Astrologically, they are best placed devoid of any malefic influences. Hence, there is no need to select a ‘muhurat’ on this day as the entire day is auspicious and suitable for new beginnings, buying new stuff, and investments. And is a part of sade teen muhurta along with Ugadi, Vijayadashami, and half of Bali Pratipada.
Today, I did not desire to go gold shopping on this auspicious occasion. Reading up all the stories associated with Akshay Tritya from different websites and putting up this post has been my greatest joy.
Wishing and hoping that each one of us finds our joy and happiness today and every day of the year. Shubha Akshay Tritiya, my dear Adbhut friends.
Kalyani S Kakade
P.S: Just as I was about to publish this post, this courier arrived. I can’t tell you how excited and elated I am to receive this book on this providential day. And I had to share my euphoria with you all. Let me share the story behind all this. I have always wanted to learn the Sanskrit language. I have been procrastinating it forever. So, finally, I enrolled myself in an online class with Chinmaya International Foundation Basic Sanskrit course and have been learning the Devbhasha for the past 3 months. I had ordered a few Sanskrit books as advised by Swamiji (We address our online tutor as Swamiji). To my good fortune, one of the books has arrived on this auspicious day of Akshaya Tritiya.
I did a simple puja keeping the book at the Pooja mandir and clicked this picture. And, here I am sharing my joy with you all. This ( arrival of the dictionary) beats all the gold I have bought all these years. In fact, this is the real gold. I really hope and pray this treasure that has arrived today in the form of this book grows in my life, and I am surrounded by books and keep devouring the nectar of our Sanatana Dharma’s knowledge and wisdom.
Shubha Akshay Tritiya, once again, friends.
17, Vaishakha Shukla Paksha, Dwitiya 2079 Rakshasa, Vikrama Samvata Singapore, 03 May 2022 Tuesday