Akshaya Tritiya, also known as Akha Teej, falls on the third lunar day of the waxing moon, according to the Indian Vaishakha. In 2019, Akshaya Tritiya will be celebrated on Tuesday, May 7.
In Sanskrit, the word “Akshayya” (अक्षय्य) means “imperishable, eternal, the never diminishing” in the sense of “prosperity, hope, joy, success”, while Tritiya means “third”.It is named after the “third lunar day” of the spring month of Vaishakha in the Hindu Calender, the day it is observed.
Stories behind the observance of this day as Auspicious and Divine !!
- The sixth incarnation of Lord Vishnu – Lord Parashuram was born on this day. He is said to have reclaimed the land from the sea as stated in the Puranic scriptures.
- Lord Ganesha and Ved Vyas had started writing the great Epic Mahabharata on this day as well.
- Jains also celebrate the day as the end of the one year fast by Tirthankara Rishabha. They mark its end by drinking sugarcane juice.
- Another story goes that God of wealth and the treasurer of all deities – Kubera, prayed to Goddess Lakshmi on this special day, and was granted the gift of perpetual wealth and prosperity. Thus, Lord Siva appointed both of them to their coveted positions as custodians of wealth and prosperity. That is why, this day is so auspicious for starting new ventures, buying a new property or gold, or getting married, as it assures prosperity and benefits. In many households, a day-long Kubera-Lakshmi puja is performed on this day.
- The holy river Ganga also descended on Earth from the heavens on this day.
- Lord Krishna’s childhood friend Sudama, visited Dwarka to him and offered him a humble gift of Poha. Therefore followers of Lord Vishnu fast throughout the day and open their fasts with rice.
- According to South Indian legend, Goddess Sundaresa (incarnation of Lord Shiva) got married to Goddess Madhura on this day.
- Annapurna, the Goddess of food, was born on this day. She is a special form of Parvati who feeds the hungry. Once, Shiva disguised himself as a beggar and approached Annapurna for food. On the Akshaya Tritiya day, she fed Lord Shiva himself. Why should Shiva beg when He is the lord of the Universe? Shiva’s begging is a symbolic act – he begs for all his beggars.
- AkshayaPatram: In the great epic Mahabharata, there was a king named Yudhisthira. He was the eldest brother among the five Pandavas, and was recognized as the son of Dharma. At Thirumanthurai temple, the Gods granted Yudhisthira with an Akshaya Patram or bowl that grants undiminishing food. He used this for the benefit of the people. He received this bowl on the Akshaya Tritiya day.Once, Garuda, the divine vehicle of Lord Vishnu, worshipped Goddess Lakshmi. She offered an Akshaya Patram to Garuda. While worshipping the Sun God, he offered food to the deity in this golden Akshaya bowl. These incidents happened in Arasar temple in the previous Yugas.
- Krishna and Kusela: On the Akshaya Tritiya day, Kusela went to meet his childhood friend Lord Krishna with the hope of solving his poverty as Krishna was a very rich king. However, he could only afford to carry along rice flakes to greet Krishna. Though he was ashamed initially to share the rice flakes with Lord Krishna, Krishna forced him to give those flakes. The moment Krishna tasted those flakes, Kusela’s poverty vanished and he became rich overnight.
How Do Hindu Household Observe Auspicious Day Of Akshaya Tritiya
On Akshaya Tritiya, Hindu households worship the Goddess Lakshmi. They buy cars, houses, and invest in new ventures. Many also buy gold on Akshaya Tritiya believing that the purchase of the jewellery would keep the Goddess happy. One of the reasons to buy gold is to make sure that there are jewellery two months before the Sharavana month which is a favourable time for engagements and marriages. The day is also regionally significant for women, married or unmarried, who pray for the well being of the men in their lives or the one they may in future get engaged to. After prayers, they distribute germinating gram (sprouts), fresh fruits and Indian sweets. Fasting, charity and helping others on this day is another festive practice
For those not buying gold, who may bring a photo of Goddess Lakshmi’s feet and do a puja for them. Brahmins are advised to donate pots, food, sugar, ghee, for the happiness of their ancestors.
May this Akshaya Tritiya, light up for you – The hopes of happy times and dreams for a year full of smiles!