Akshaya Tritiya is believed to be the most auspicious day of the entire year. This day carries heavy religious significance and is celebrated by majority of Indian population. Many perform all their major tasks on this day and start a new thing as well. Let’s know the mythology associated with this occasion to understand the importance of it.
· 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.