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Pournami or Poornima is the alternate name for full moon day in India. It's the day of the month when the moon appears in its full glory, enveloping the Earth in its milky white serene radiance.

In India, various customs and traditions revolve around Poornima. One of the most popular traditions in the Karnataka state is the 'beladingala oota', meaning having dinner on a full-moon night. On this day, the entire family gathers on the terrace and has dinner together under the full moon. In villages, it's usually the whole neighborhood that gathers at a pre-specified place. Each household prepares one dish, everyone will have a share in it. 

The traditions are no short of festive celebrations. They promote kinship, bonding, and harmony. It also fosters community bonding, which is the core of human society. Similar to festivals, organizing such events during pleasant nights provides a much-needed respite from the hectic schedules.

Importance of Pournami

The full moon that emerges once in 15 days is called poorna Chandra in Sanskrit. Hence, astrologers coined the term Pournami. To elaborate, Pournami means the day on which the full moon appears.

Astrological Significance
A full moon implies positivity in astrology. It is a symbol of rebirth, abundance, calm, birth, and completion. The Veda's describe the customs to be followed on this day to reap the full benefits of harvesting the moon's energy. Alternate healing practitioners like Pranic or Reiki healers stress the benefits of meditating on full-moon days. 

Mythological and Cultural Significance:
According to ancient mythology and folklore, various important events happened on Poornima. Lord Vishnu's Matsya avatar, Lord Subramanya's birth, and Gautama Buddha's birth occurred on a full moon day. Gautama Buddha's birthday is celebrated as Buddha Poornima and is one of the most auspicious days. 
Hindus perform various poojas like Satyanarayana vrat on pournami. The purpose is solely because ancient literature stresses that performing pujas on Poornima have great merits.

Scientific Significance:
If women can notice carefully, most of their menstrual cycles sync with the waxing and waning of the moon. The menstrual days either start or their fertile period coincide with pournami.
The tides in the ocean experience the highest gravitational pulls on full moon days. It shows the power of moon energy over the Earth and how it affects marine and land life alike.
Also, as the moon's energy is highest, it induces positive changes in health. A few of them are:

  • Reduction in gastritis problems
  • Better mind and body balance
  • Increased metabolic process
  • Stable health
  • Faster healing process

From the above, it's easy to gather for a fact that pournami is not just another day, but a special day that affects the lives of every being on Earth.

Full moon day names list

Usually, there are 12 pournami's in a calendar year. In rare cases, when a month has two full moon days (blue moon), there will be 13 full moon days in a year. Each Poornima has a special significance in the Hindu culture. Following is a quick look at the same and their dates in the current year of 2021:
Pausa Purnima - January 28th, Thursday
Shakambari Poornima is the alternate name for Pausa poornima. It usually falls in January. Devotees worship the goddess Shakamabri who is the goddess of a Shakti peetham, on this day.
Magha Purnima - February 27th, Saturday
On this day, devotees celebrate Dattatreya Jayanthi. It is the birth anniversary of Lord Dattatreya, who is the incarnation of the trinity.
Phalguna Purnima - March 28th, Sunday
The festival of colors, Holi, is celebrated on the full moon day of Phalguna or the month of spring.
Chaitra Purnima - April 27th, Tuesday
Hanumantha Jayanthi, i.e., the birth anniversary of Lord Hanuman, falls on this day. The dates vary for different regions.
Vaisakha Purnima- May 26th, Wednesday
The full moon day of Vaishaka is also known as Buddha Poornima. This day celebrates the birth, enlightenment, and nirvana of Gautama Buddha, the founder of Buddhism. 
Jyeshta Purnima - June 24th, Thursday
Women perform Vat Savitri vrat praying for the long life of their husbands on Jyeshta Purnima. Mythology has it that Savitri saved her husband's life from the clutches of Lord Yama on this day.
Ashadha Purnima - July 24th, Saturday
Guru Purnima, a day dedicated to celebrating the contributions of guru's falls on Ashada Purnima.
Sravana Purnima - August 22nd, Sunday
Hayagriva Jayanthi, Gayathri Jayanthi, and Raksha Bandhan fall on Sravana Purnima. 
Bhadrapada Purnima - September 20th, Monday
Bhadrapada Purnima is an auspicious day to perform Sathyanarayana puja and Maha Mrityunjaya havan.
Ashvina Purnima - October 20th, Wednesday
Sharad Purnima, or the harvest festival, falls on Ashvin Purnima. It marks the end of the monsoon season in India.
Kartik Purnima - November 19th, Friday
Karthika Purnima celebrates the victory of Lord Shiva over the asura Tarakasura. Karthika Deepam falls on this day. The day also marks the end of Chatur masa - a period when Lord Vishnu will be asleep.
Agrahayana Purnima - December 19th, Sunday
Agrahayana Purnima occurs during pitru paksha when loved one's offer homage to their deceased ancestors.

Purnima Vrat Rules

The devotees follow a full day fast. The fasting usually begins at sunrise on Purnima day (occasionally on Chaturdashi).

  • Wake up and take a bath before sunrise.
  • Nirjal vrat, i.e., fasting without drinking water, is the traditional form of vrat on pournami.
  • People who cannot follow the above method may consume a meal of fruits and milk.
  • Strictly avoid consuming cereals, pulses, and salt.
  • You can end fasting after seeing the full Moonrise and offering the prayers as per your convenience.

Consult our Vedic astrologers to learn more about pournami vrats and how to perform them. With their guidance, attain the blessing of the deities and see improvements in your health and lifestyle.

Also Read: Importance of Amavasya & Purnima Days Do and Don't on These Days
 


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