Eat, Pray, Love: The Importance of Ekadasi

Eat, Pray, Love: The Importance of Ekadasi

By Ananta Gopal Das | Head Pujari (Priest) at Bhaktivedanta Manor

In the modern age, more than 1 billion adults and children around the world are obese, and it is predicted that more than half of the world’s population will be overweight or obese by 2035.

Who does not like a good cake or ice cream?

When offered to Krishna with devotion, food becomes spiritual and helps a devotee make spiritual advancement; therefore, devotees eat all sorts of sweets and savoury preparations. At the same time, if consumed without first offering it to Krishna, it binds us further in this material world.

Bhagavad-gita 3.13: The devotees of the Lord are released from all kinds of sins because they eat food which is offered first for sacrifice. Others, who prepare food for personal sense enjoyment, verily eat only sin.

How much should we eat?

Although Krishna encourages us to offer everything to Him before consuming it ourselves, in the latter chapters of the Bhagavat Gita, He advises us to be moderate.

Bhagavad-gita 6.17: He who is regulated in his eating, sleeping, recreation and work habits can mitigate all material pains by practising the yoga system.

Ekadasi plays a vital role in every devotee’s life. It is observed eleven days after the full moon and eleven days after the new moon of every month. On that day, devotees eat simply, avoiding grains, beans and pulses, and use their time to serve Lord Krishna, chant more japa than usual, and read more devotional literature. They spend more time associating with other devotees at the temple.

Why not try the Eat, Pray, Love formula on Ekadasi?

Eat: Simplify your eating to improve your health and safe time for spiritual activities.

Pray: Increase your commitment to spiritual practice.

Love: Offer extra service and love to Lord Krishna and the devotees in your community.

Srimad Bhagavatam 1.17.38 purport: Even from the economic point of view, such two fasting days in a month in the state will save tons of food, and the system will also act very favorably on the general health of the citizens.