CHOTI DIWALI (NARAKA CHATURDASI) – 12th NOV 2012
Krishna Paksha Chaturdashi of the month of Kartik is known as Narak Chaturdashi. Narak Chaturdashi is also known as Narak Chaudas, Roop Chaudas, Roop Chaturdashi, Narak Chaturdashi or Naraka Pooja. It is believed that the god of death, Yamraj is worshipped on this day. In 2012, Narak Chaturdashi will be celebrated on 12th November, Monday.
Narak Chaturdashi is also known as Chotti Deepawali. It is celebrated a day before Deepawali by lightning a candle in the evening. Lord Yamraj is worshipped on this day to get freedom from death and attain good health. There are many mythological stories and scriptures explaining the importance of lightning the candle and worshipping Lord Yamraj on this day.
Naraka Chaturdashi Story
According to an ancient tale, a king named Ranti Deva was a religious and wise man. He was highly involved in religious works and service of mankind. At the time of his death messengers of Yamraj came to take his soul. The moment messengers stepped towards the king, he asked them that, “despite of not doing any evil deed throughout my life, why you all have come to take me to hell. Please tell me my sin due to which i am being taken to hell.” Hearing the compassionate voice of the King, the messengers told him, “once you let one priest go back hungry from your door, due to which you got hell.
On listening their reason, King asked them to grant him a year time. The messengers gave it a thought and increased his life for another 1 year. On the departure of the messengers the king visits the saints and tells them the entire story.
The saints tell the king to observe the fast on the Kartik Krishna Paksha Chaturdashi, feed the priests and apologise them for your mistake. This will give you relief from your sins. As per the rituals told by the priests he observed the fast and got relief from his sin. Since then this fast is observed on Kartik Chaturdashi to get freedom from going to hell.
According to another tale, Lord Krishna killed the demon, Narkasura on the Kartik Chaturdashi of Krishna Paksha and protected the gods and the saints from his wrath. He also freed 16000 girls from his captive home. People lighted the kingdom with lamps to celebrate the victory. Since that day Narak Chaturthi is celebrated in India.
Narak Chaturthi is also very well known as Roop Chaturthi. Lord Krishna is worshipped on this day to get beautiful looks. According to an ancient tale, there was a man named Yogiraj in Hirnagarbha Kingdom. Once he attempted to hold his own grave to please god and suffered a lot during his penance. He got bugs on his body and lice into his hair and eyebrows.
Seeing the adverse condition of his body he became sad. After a while Lord Narad visited him and asked Yogiraj the reason of his sadness. On which Yogiraj tells him, “I observed penance to please the god, but had to go through lot of sufferings. Why did it happen?” Listening to his sad voice, Lord Narad tell him that, “ you adopted the right path, but forgot to follow the body ethics, due to which you had to go through these problems.
Listening to Lord Narad, Yogiraj asks him the ethics of body. On which he replies, “that first of all observe fast on Kartik Krishna Paksha Chaturthi and worship the god to get a healthy and beautiful body. Then only you will be able to follow the body ethics told by me”. Yogiraj observed the fast as told by Lord Narad and gained back his health and beauty. Since then this day is known as Roop Chaturdashi.
Source : astrobix.com