Kartik Purnima

Kartika Purnima is not only a Hindu festival but also a cultural festival for devotees of the Sikh and Jain religions. Also known as Tripuri Purnima and Deva-Diwali, it is an auspicious festival held on the Purnima of Kartik on the Hindu Lunar Calendar. Since Kartik is commonly observed as the holiest month on the Hindu Calendar, this is an extremely important holiday.

It commemorates the victory of Lord Shiva over the demon collective known as Tripurasura. Since it is observed by so many religious traditions, there are a variety of different rituals performed on this day, almost too many to cover in this one holiday article.

The Story of Kartika Purnima

According to the Kartika Purnima Katha, the real world was conquered by the demons Vidyunmali, Tarakaksha, and Viryavana. They were collectively known as the Tripurasura and had defeated the Devatas. The Tripurasura created three cities in space after they had defeated the gods.

However, Lord Shiva killed the Tripurasura with a single arrow on Kartik Purnima to end their rule. When the Devatas heard of this, they marked the day with an enlightenment festival called Dev Deepavali—otherwise known as Diwali for the gods.

This festival does not just celebrate the defeat of Tripurasura and the joy of the Devatas, however. It is also a day when Vrinda’s birthday is celebrated. Vrinda is a sacred plant in Hinduism and is known as Holy Basil in English. It is regarded as an earthly manifestation of the goddess Tulasi. Unsurprisingly, it is also the date when Lord Vishnu’s incarnation as a fish happened. Some also believe that it is the birthday of Kartikeya, Lord Shiva’s son, as well.

The Significance of Kartika Purnima

As stated by the Sacred Scriptures of Hinduism, this day is extremely important. It is both a religious and a cultural holiday. It is said that devotees who worship Lord Vishnu on this day will gain immense wealth. It is also believed that this day is so advantageous that any puja carried out on this day will be even more successful than it normally would be.

Rituals and Observances on Kartika Purnima

On this day, many devotees will take a holy bath at pilgrimage sites, or at home by adding Ganga Jal to their bathwater. Devotees will then light either mustard oil or ghee Diya lamp and worship Lord Vishnu with the appropriate ceremonies. Idols of Lord Vishnu are also worshiped, and flowers are heaped on them while incense sticks and clay lamps are lit. Prayers are offered to him on this day, and it is said that these prayers help devotees live a peaceful life and overcome their fears.

Of course, since Kartik Purnima occurs during a time when there are many religious and cultural festivals, the holiday is celebrated over a 5-day period. Other festivals are also held, and these include Tulsi Vivah, Vaikunth Chaturdashi, and Dev Deepawali, to name a few. These festivals all have the same purpose, and that is to cleanse the devotee’s soul of sin and invite a positive light into their hearts.

When is it?
This year (2024)
November 15 Friday
Next year (2025)
November 5 Wednesday
Last year (2023)
November 27 Monday