Celebrate Nirjala Ekadashi 2024 by Honoring Lord Shaligram with This Ritual for Pleasing 'Shri Hari'

Nirjala Ekadashi is a significant fasting day in the Hindu calendar, dedicated to Lord Vishnu. Falling in the month of Jyeshtha, it is celebrated with great devotion and strict fasting, without even consuming water, hence the name 'Nirjala' which means 'without water'.

In 2024, Nirjala Ekadashi is observed on the 18th of June, and it is believed that worshiping Lord Shaligram on this day with the prescribed method brings immense blessings, prosperity, and health benefits to devotees.

This article delves into the importance of this day, the worship rituals, the glory of Lord Shaligram, fasting tips, and the cultural aspects of Nirjala Ekadashi.

Key Takeaways

  • Nirjala Ekadashi is one of the most important and challenging fasts in the Hindu tradition, observed without water and food.
  • Worshiping Lord Shaligram on Nirjala Ekadashi with the specific method can result in divine blessings and satisfaction of 'Shri Hari'.
  • The fast is observed on the 18th of June in 2024, and the day holds three auspicious timings or 'shubh sanyog'.
  • Understanding the rituals and step-by-step worship procedure is crucial for devotees to please Lord Vishnu and gain spiritual benefits.
  • The day is not only about fasting but also encompasses cultural, social, and health aspects, reinforcing community bonds and individual well-being.

Understanding Nirjala Ekadashi and Its Significance

The Vedic Calendar and Nirjala Ekadashi

Nirjala Ekadashi is one of the most significant and austere fasts observed in the Hindu Vedic calendar. It falls on the 11th lunar day (Ekadashi) of the waxing fortnight in the month of Jyeshtha, which typically corresponds to May or June in the Gregorian calendar. This Ekadashi is unique because it is observed without water, hence the name 'Nirjala', meaning 'without water'.

The Vedic calendar is replete with numerous fasts and festivals, each with its own set of rituals and significance. Nirjala Ekadashi is especially revered among the Ekadashis due to its strict fasting rules and the belief that observing it bestows the combined merits of all 24 Ekadashis observed in a year.

On Nirjala Ekadashi, devotees undertake a rigorous fast, abstaining not only from food but also from water, from sunrise on the day of Ekadashi to sunrise the next day.

The auspicious date for Nirjala Ekadashi in the year 2024 is June 18, Tuesday. Here is a brief overview of the key dates around Nirjala Ekadashi in June 2024:

  • Apara Ekadashi - 2 June, Sunday
  • Monthly Shivratri - 4 June, Tuesday
  • Jyeshtha Amavasya - 6 June, Thursday
  • Mithun Sankranti - 15 June, Saturday
  • Nirjala Ekadashi - 18 June, Tuesday
  • Shukla Pradosh Vrat - 19 June, Wednesday
  • Jyeshtha Purnima Vrat - 22 June, Saturday
  • Sankashti Chaturthi - 25 June, Tuesday

ALSO READ - Nirjala Ekadashi Puja Samagri

Spiritual Benefits of Observing Nirjala Ekadashi

Observing Nirjala Ekadashi is considered one of the most virtuous acts in Hinduism, offering profound spiritual benefits. Devotees believe that fasting on this day without water purifies the soul and brings them closer to divinity.

  • Cleansing of sins: Fasting on Nirjala Ekadashi is said to wash away the sins of not just the present life, but also those accumulated over several past lives.
  • Spiritual growth: It is a day for introspection and meditation, which enhances one's spiritual growth and understanding.
  • Divine blessings: Those who observe the fast with sincerity are believed to receive the blessings of Lord Vishnu, leading to a path of righteousness and peace.
The austerity of the Nirjala Ekadashi fast, which is observed without even a sip of water, is said to offer the same merits as those gained by observing all 24 Ekadashi fasts throughout the year. This makes it especially significant for those seeking spiritual elevation.

The Auspicious Timings on Nirjala Ekadashi 2024

Nirjala Ekadashi, one of the most significant fasting days dedicated to Lord Vishnu, falls on 18 June, Tuesday in the year 2024. This day is marked by strict fasting from sunrise to sunrise of the next day without consuming any water, hence the name 'Nirjala', meaning 'without water'.

The observance of Nirjala Ekadashi is believed to bring the combined benefits of all 24 Ekadashis observed in the Hindu calendar year.

For devotees planning to perform the sacred rituals, it is crucial to be aware of the auspicious timings. The fast begins at sunrise, and it is recommended to perform morning rituals and prayers during the Brahma Muhurta, which is approximately one and a half hours before sunrise. The exact timing for the Brahma Muhurta and other significant moments throughout the day can be calculated based on the geographical location of the observer.

Below is a list of key timings for Nirjala Ekadashi in 2024:

  • Sunrise: To be determined based on location
  • Brahma Muhurta: Approximately 1.5 hours before local sunrise
  • Parana Time: The time to break the fast the next day, usually after sunrise and before the end of Dwadashi Tithi

The Rituals of Nirjala Ekadashi Worship

Preparation for the Vrat and Puja

The preparation for Nirjala Ekadashi Vrat and Puja is a sacred process that requires attention to detail and reverence. Ensure the altar is set up with all the essential items needed for the worship. This includes a picture or idol of Lord Vishnu, a Shaligram stone, incense, flowers, fruits, and other offerings.

  • Cleanse the area where the Puja will be conducted, ideally at the place of worship in your home.
  • Arrange the items on the altar in a manner that is both aesthetically pleasing and in accordance with Vedic traditions.
  • Prepare the offerings with devotion, considering the purity of the ingredients and the sincerity of your intentions.
Approach the cleansing and purifying process with the utmost respect, as it sets the tone for the spiritual journey of the day.

It is also important to familiarize yourself with the rituals and mantras that will be recited during the Puja. Take some time to understand the meaning behind each step of the worship to enhance the spiritual experience.

Step-by-Step Worship Procedure

The worship of Lord Shaligram on Nirjala Ekadashi is a meticulous process that devotees follow with great devotion. Begin the day by decorating the worship area with devotional items to create a sacred environment. This includes flowers, incense, and lamps to invite a sense of purity and spirituality.

Next, perform the morning aarti, an integral part of the puja that signifies the removal of darkness and ignorance. Bathe and dress the idol of Lord Shaligram with clean clothes, and offer bhog, which typically consists of fruits, sweets, and other food items sanctified for the deity.

Conclude the worship with the evening aarti, a ritual that encapsulates the reverence and prayers offered throughout the day. It is also a time for reflection and seeking blessings for the well-being of oneself and others.

Remember to chant the appropriate mantras with devotion, as they are believed to enhance the connection with the divine.

Offering Prayers to Lord Shaligram

Offering prayers to Lord Shaligram is a sacred practice that embodies devotion and spirituality. The rituals begin with a ceremonial cleansing of the Shaligram stone, followed by the presentation of various offerings.

Devotees often use items such as tulsi leaves, flowers, and incense to honor the deity. It is essential to perform these rituals with a pure heart and focused mind to invoke the blessings of Lord Vishnu.

The act of worship is not just a ritualistic practice but a means to connect with the divine, seeking spiritual growth and inner peace.

To ensure that the prayers reach Lord Shaligram with utmost sincerity, here is a simple guide to follow:

  • Begin with a silent prayer to invite the presence of Lord Vishnu.
  • Cleanse the Shaligram stone with panchamrita or holy water.
  • Offer tulsi leaves, which are dear to Lord Vishnu.
  • Light incense and diyas to create a serene atmosphere.
  • Chant the Vishnu Sahasranama or other hymns dedicated to Lord Vishnu.
  • Conclude with the aarti, followed by distributing prasad among the devotees.

The Glory of Lord Shaligram in Hinduism

Significance of Lord Shaligram

The Shaligram Stone is not just a symbol but a cornerstone of spiritual practice in Hinduism. It is traditionally worshipped as a direct representation of Lord Vishnu, one of the principal deities of the religion. The stone's origins from the sacred Gandaki River in Nepal add to its sanctity and reverence among devotees.

Believers hold that the Shaligram Stone has the power to influence the spiritual and material realms. It is said to deepen devotion and enhance the spiritual connection between the devotee and the divine.

Moreover, the stone is attributed with the ability to amplify prayers and bring about healing, making it a sought-after element in religious ceremonies.

The presence of a Shaligram Stone in one's place of worship is considered to bring prosperity and peace, aligning the environment with cosmic energies.

Worshipping the Shaligram involves rituals that are believed to please Lord Vishnu, ensuring his blessings for health, wealth, and spiritual growth. The stone's significance is deeply embedded in the Hindu ethos, symbolizing the presence of the divine in every aspect of life.

Mythological Stories Associated with Lord Shaligram

The tales of Lord Shaligram are steeped in deep mythological significance, often symbolizing the eternal presence of Lord Vishnu on Earth.

One such story recounts the transformation of Vishnu into a stone, marking his perpetual commitment to aid his devotees. This stone, the Shaligram, is considered a direct representation of the deity.

  • The curse of Goddess Lakshmi by Sage Durvasa, which led to her transformation into a tulsi plant, and subsequently, to the creation of the Shaligram stone.
  • The churning of the ocean by gods and demons, where Lord Vishnu manifests as a turtle to support Mount Mandara, and pieces of the mountain fall to Earth, becoming Shaligram stones.
  • The tale of the demon Jalandhar, whose virtuous wife Brinda was tricked by Vishnu, resulting in her curse that Vishnu would turn into stone.
The worship of Lord Shaligram is deeply rooted in these mythological narratives, each story highlighting the virtues of devotion and the grace of the divine.

How Worshipping Lord Shaligram Benefits Devotees

Worshipping Lord Shaligram is deeply rooted in the Hindu tradition and is believed to bestow numerous spiritual and material benefits upon the devotees. Devotion to Lord Shaligram is said to purify the heart and mind, leading to a life of righteousness and virtue.

  • Spiritual Clarity: Regular worship helps in gaining spiritual insight and clarity of mind.
  • Protection: It is thought to provide protection against negative energies and influences.
  • Karmic Balance: Helps in balancing karmic debts, leading to a more harmonious life.
  • Health and Well-being: Devotees often experience an improvement in their overall health and well-being.
By incorporating Lord Shaligram into daily worship, devotees can cultivate a deeper connection with the divine, enhancing their spiritual journey and bringing peace and prosperity into their lives.

Fasting Tips and Health Benefits

How to Observe the Nirjala Ekadashi Fast

Observing the Nirjala Ekadashi fast involves a complete abstinence from food and water from sunrise on the day of the fast until sunrise the following day. It is considered one of the most austere and rewarding fasts in the Hindu tradition.

  • Begin the day with an early morning bath and intentions of sincere fasting.
  • Engage in prayers, meditation, and chanting of mantras dedicated to Lord Vishnu.
  • Refrain from consuming any food or water throughout the day.
  • Visit temples or create a sacred space at home for worship.
The fast is broken the next day after sunrise, following the performance of morning rituals and offering food to Brahmins or the needy.

It is essential to prepare mentally and physically for the fast, ensuring one's health permits the rigorous nature of Nirjala Ekadashi. Those with medical conditions should consult with a healthcare provider before undertaking the fast.

Health Advantages of Fasting on Nirjala Ekadashi

Fasting on Nirjala Ekadashi is not only a spiritual endeavor but also comes with numerous health benefits. Detoxification of the body is one of the primary advantages, as the fast encourages the elimination of toxins and supports the rejuvenation of bodily systems. This process can lead to improved digestion and metabolic functions.

  • Enhanced mental clarity and focus
  • Strengthened immune system
  • Promotion of weight loss and healthy eating habits
  • Increased energy levels and vitality
Fasting during Nirjala Ekadashi aligns with the principles of Ayurveda, which suggest periodic fasting to balance the three doshas—Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. This balance is essential for maintaining overall health and well-being.

While the fast is rigorous, abstaining from water and food from sunrise to sunrise, it is believed to instill discipline and self-control. The practice can also lead to a deeper sense of peace and spiritual connection, as the physical act of fasting is intertwined with meditation and prayer.

Breaking the Fast: Do's and Don'ts

Breaking the Nirjala Ekadashi fast, known as Parana, is as crucial as the fast itself. It should be done at the right time and in the right manner to ensure the fast's spiritual efficacy is not compromised. Here are some guidelines to follow:

  • Perform the Parana after sunrise on the next day of Ekadashi.
  • Begin with a prayer to express gratitude and seek forgiveness for any involuntary mistakes during the fast.
  • Consume light food such as fruits or milk initially to prepare the digestive system.
It is essential to avoid breaking the fast during the prohibited time, which is the Hari Vasara period. This time is considered inauspicious for ending the fast and can diminish the benefits of the vrat.

Avoid heavy or spicy foods immediately after the fast to prevent any digestive issues. Gradually reintroduce regular meals over the next few days. Remember, the key to a successful Parana is moderation and mindfulness.

Cultural and Community Aspects of Nirjala Ekadashi

Community Gatherings and Public Celebrations

Nirjala Ekadashi is not just a day of personal piety but also a time for community togetherness. Public celebrations and gatherings play a pivotal role in reinforcing the cultural bonds and spiritual ambiance of this auspicious day. Devotees come together in temples and public spaces, creating an atmosphere of devotion and collective joy.

  • Temples organize special events and kirtans.
  • Community halls host satsangs and spiritual discourses.
  • Public processions with chants and music uplift the spirit of the festival.
The essence of Nirjala Ekadashi extends beyond individual worship to encompass community harmony and shared spiritual experiences.

These gatherings are not only about worship but also about reinforcing the social fabric of the community. They serve as a reminder of the collective identity and shared values that festivals like Nirjala Ekadashi help to preserve and celebrate.

The Role of Nirjala Ekadashi in Indian Culture

Nirjala Ekadashi is deeply woven into the cultural fabric of India, marking a day of spiritual reflection and community harmony. It is a day when the collective consciousness of society turns towards piety and devotion.

The festival is not just about individual fasting and worship but also about reinforcing social bonds. Families and communities come together, creating a vibrant atmosphere of shared beliefs and traditions. The following points highlight the cultural importance of Nirjala Ekadashi:

  • It serves as a reminder of the timeless Vedic traditions and the importance of preserving them.
  • The day is an opportunity for collective prayers, enhancing the sense of unity among people.
  • Nirjala Ekadashi encourages acts of charity, with many participating in giving alms and helping the needy.
  • Cultural programs and devotional songs often mark the occasion, adding to the festive spirit.
On this auspicious day, the focus is not only on the rituals but also on the essence of selflessness and community service. The practice of fasting is believed to instill discipline and purify the mind and body, contributing to the overall well-being of individuals and society at large.

Sharing and Charity: Social Practices on Nirjala Ekadashi

Nirjala Ekadashi is not only a day for spiritual introspection but also for fostering social harmony and compassion. On this auspicious day, devotees engage in various charitable activities, reflecting the essence of selflessness and community service.

  • Donating food and clothes to the needy is a common practice, symbolizing the sharing of one's blessings.
  • Many also participate in organizing community feasts, where everyone, irrespective of their social status, is invited to partake in the meal.
  • Volunteering at temples and helping with the arrangements for the day's events is another way devotees express their devotion and contribute to the community.
The spirit of Nirjala Ekadashi extends beyond personal piety to include acts that benefit the wider society, embodying the principles of Dharma.

These practices are not just about giving material aid but also about creating a sense of unity and collective well-being. It is a day when barriers are broken, and hearts are opened, as everyone comes together in the name of faith and generosity.


As we reflect on the sacred observance of Nirjala Ekadashi, it's clear that this day holds immense significance for devotees seeking the blessings of Lord Vishnu and prosperity in their lives.

By following the prescribed method of worship, especially the veneration of Lord Shaligram on this auspicious occasion, believers can deepen their spiritual connection and invite divine grace into their lives.

The convergence of favorable astrological yogas on Nirjala Ekadashi in 2024 further amplifies the potential for spiritual growth and material gains.

Let us embrace the rituals with devotion and faith, trusting in the promise of health, wealth, and spiritual fulfillment that comes with the sincere observance of this holy day.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Nirjala Ekadashi and why is it significant?

Nirjala Ekadashi is a Hindu fasting day dedicated to Lord Vishnu, observed on the 11th day of the waxing moon in the month of Jyeshtha. It is significant because it is believed to offer the combined benefits of all 24 Ekadashi fasts in the year if observed with strict abstinence from water.

How do I properly worship Lord Shaligram on Nirjala Ekadashi?

On Nirjala Ekadashi, worship Lord Shaligram by following a traditional puja procedure that includes offering Tulsi leaves, sandalwood paste, and flowers, conducting an aarti, and reciting Vishnu Sahasranama or other hymns dedicated to Lord Vishnu.

What are the auspicious timings for Nirjala Ekadashi in 2024?

In 2024, Nirjala Ekadashi falls on June 18th. The auspicious timings for the day will be based on the Hindu lunar calendar and can be confirmed closer to the date.

Can I drink water on Nirjala Ekadashi?

Nirjala Ekadashi is known for its strict fasting rules, which include abstaining from drinking water from sunrise on the day of Ekadashi until sunrise the next day. However, individuals with health conditions should consult a doctor before undertaking such a fast.

What are the health benefits of fasting on Nirjala Ekadashi?

Fasting on Nirjala Ekadashi can help detoxify the body, improve digestive health, and promote mental clarity. It is also believed to have spiritual benefits such as self-discipline and purification of the mind.

How should I break my fast on Nirjala Ekadashi?

The fast should be broken on the next day after sunrise, ideally with a meal that is light and easy to digest. Traditionally, the fast is broken by consuming fruits, milk, or other non-grain items before gradually resuming a normal diet.

Back to blog