Paush Shukla Dwadashi 2024: Kurma Dwadashi

Paush Shukla Dwadashi is significant for the construction of the Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Temple in Ayodhya, which is scheduled to take place on January 22, 2024.

Read More Ram Mandir in Ayodhya 2024: Everything You Need to Know

What is Paush Shukla Dwadashi?

Paush Shukla Dwadashi is a Hindu lunar date that falls on the twelfth day of the bright fortnight (Shukla Paksha) of the month of Paush. It is considered auspicious for worshipping Lord Vishnu, who is the presiding deity of this date. Some devotees also observe a fast on this day and donate food, clothes, or money to the needy.

Paush Shukla Dwadashi 2024, lord Vishnu

This year, it will be celebrated on January 15, 2024. Paush Shukla Dwadashi is also known as Kurma Dwadashi, as it is dedicated to the worship of Kurma, the second avatar of Lord Vishnu. In this blog, we will explore the significance, rituals, and benefits of observing Paush Shukla Dwadashi.

What is Kurma Dwadashi?

Kurma Dwadashi is a festival that commemorates the appearance of Lord Vishnu as Kurma, the tortoise incarnation. According to the Hindu scriptures, Kurma avatar played a vital role in the churning of the ocean (Samudra Manthan), which resulted in the emergence of various divine and demonic objects, including the nectar of immortality (Amrita).

Lord Vishnu took the form of a giant tortoise and supported the Mandara Mountain, which was used as a churning rod by the gods and demons. He also helped the gods to obtain the Amrita and distributed it among them, while preventing the demons from consuming it. Thus, Kurma avatar saved the gods from the tyranny of the demons and restored the balance of the universe.

How to observe Kurma Dwadashi?

  • The devotees of Lord Vishnu observe a fast on Kurma Dwadashi, which begins on the previous day (Ekadashi) and ends on the next day (Trayodashi).
  • They wake up early in the morning and take a bath, preferably in a holy river or lake.
  • They then perform a puja to Lord Vishnu and offer him flowers, fruits, incense, lamps, and other items.
  • They also recite the Vishnu Sahasranama, the thousand names of Lord Vishnu, and listen to the story of Kurma avatar.
  • They avoid eating any grains, beans, or salt on this day and consume only fruits, milk, or water.
  • They also refrain from any sinful activities, such as lying, stealing, hurting others, etc.
  • They spend the day in chanting the name of Lord Vishnu and meditating on his form.
  • They break the fast on the next day after offering food to a Brahmin or a cow.

What is the story of Kurma avatar?

The story of Kurma avatar is one of the ten incarnations of Lord Vishnu, the preserver of the universe. It is a story of how he transformed into a tortoise to save the world and restore balance

The story of Kurma avatar happens during a big event called the Samudra Manthan, which is like the cosmic ocean being stirred up. In a situation where they really need each other, the gods (devas) and the demons (asuras) team up to get the nectar of immortality, called amrita, from deep in the ocean.

Paush Shukla Dwadashi 2024, lord Vishnu

To churn the ocean, they use Mount Mandara as a churning rod and the serpent Vasuki as a rope. However, the mountain starts to sink into the ocean, and the churning becomes impossible. Lord Vishnu comes to the rescue and takes the form of a giant tortoise, called Kurma. He supports the mountain on his back and prevents it from sinking. He also helps the gods to obtain the amrita and distribute it among them, while preventing the demons from consuming it. Thus, he saves the gods from the tyranny of the demons and restores the balance of the universe

The Kurma avatar is a symbol of strength, perseverance, and determination. It also shows the importance of cooperation and harmony among different beings. The Kurma avatar is celebrated on the twelfth day of the bright fortnight (Shukla Paksha) of the lunar month of Paush, which usually falls in January

What are the benefits of Kurma Dwadashi?

The observance of Kurma Dwadashi is believed to bestow various benefits to the devotees, such as:

  • It helps in the redemption of sins and the attainment of moksha, the liberation from the cycle of birth and death.
  • It grants the blessings of Lord Vishnu and his consort Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and prosperity.
  • It enhances the health, longevity, and vitality of the devotees, as they follow a strict diet and discipline on this day.
  • It protects the devotees from any harm or danger, as Lord Vishnu is the supreme protector of his devotees.
  • It fulfills the desires and wishes of the devotees, as Lord Vishnu is the fulfiller of all the boons.

Significance of Paush Shukla Dwadashi for Ram Mandir?

Paush Shukla Dwadashi is also significant for the construction of the Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Temple in Ayodhya, which is scheduled to take place on January 22, 2024. This temple will mark the birthplace of Lord Ram, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu.

The consecration (Pran Pratishtha) of the new idols of Ram Lala (child form of Lord Ram) will be done on this auspicious day, following the Ramanandi tradition of worship. This tradition emphasizes the worship of Rama, as well as Vishnu directly and other incarnations. It also involves a strict routine of 16 rituals for Ram Lala, such as bathing, dressing, offering food, and performing aarti.

The choice of this date is based on the astrological calculations and the historical significance of the Ram Janmabhoomi site. According to the Hindu scriptures, Lord Ram was born on the ninth day (Navami) of the bright fortnight of Chaitra month, which coincides with the spring season.

Ram Mandir in Ayodhya construction
Ram Mandir in Ayodhya construction

However, due to the invasion and destruction of the original temple by the Mughal rulers, the worship of Ram Lala was shifted to the winter season, which corresponds to the Paush month. Therefore, the Paush Shukla Dwadashi is seen as a symbolic date to restore the original glory of the Ram Janmabhoomi site and celebrate the return of Lord Ram to his birthplace.

How to celebrate Paush Shukla Dwadashi for Ram Temple?

The Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust, which is overseeing the construction of the Ram Temple, has made a fervent appeal to the global Hindu society to celebrate the day by gathering in local temples to do prayers, Japa and offering Prasad at the same time as the celebration in Ayodhya. If a person cannot go to the temple at this time, they can light five lamps (diyas) and chant the name of Lord Ram at home.

The Ayodhya Pran Pratishtha program will be broadcasted live, globally by Doordarshan. Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) in Bharat has decided to facilitate this auspicious program in helping the Trust to organize it in over 500,000 temples and in contacting millions of Hindu homes. Vishwa Hindu Parishad of America is also helping to make this the grandest celebration in North America.

Hindus all over the world have been waiting for this momentous event. We request all Hindus of North America to make this event befitting Shree Ram’s glory! Let the resounding dhun of “Shree Ram Jai Ram Jai Jai Ram” resonate around the world at the same time as Ramjanmabhumi, Ayodhya. Jai Shri Ram! 🙏


Paush Shukla Dwadashi is a sacred and auspicious festival that honors the Kurma avatar of Lord Vishnu. It is a day of fasting, worship, and devotion that brings peace, happiness, and prosperity to the devotees. By observing this festival with faith and sincerity, one can please Lord Vishnu and receive his grace and mercy.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What is the significance of Paush Shukla Dwadashi?

Paush Shukla Dwadashi holds immense significance in Hinduism, marking the 12th day (Dwadashi) of the waxing moon (Shukla Paksha) in the Hindu month of Paush. It is dedicated to Lord Vishnu, and also commemorates the churning of the cosmic ocean (Samudra Manthan).

2. When is Paush Shukla Dwadashi celebrated in 2024?

In 2024, Paush Shukla Dwadashi falls on Wednesday, January 10th.

3. What are the rituals and observances recommended for Paush Shukla Dwadashi?

Various rituals and observances are associated with Paush Shukla Dwadashi, including:

  • Fasting: Devotees observe a full-day fast, breaking it only after the evening puja.
  • Puja: A puja is performed in the evening, offering prayers and offerings to Lord Vishnu, often including a turtle idol.
  • Chanting: Mantras and hymns dedicated to Lord Vishnu and the Kurma avatar are chanted.
  • Donations: Charity and donations are considered highly meritorious on this day.
  • Reading of scriptures: Reciting or listening to religious texts like the Bhagavad Gita is encouraged.

4. Is fasting mandatory on Paush Shukla Dwadashi? What are the benefits of fasting?

Fasting is not entirely mandatory but considered highly auspicious. It is believed to cleanse the body and mind, paving the way for spiritual growth and blessings from Lord Vishnu.

5. What are the mantras and hymns chanted during Paush Shukla Dwadashi puja?

Several mantras and hymns are recited during Paush Shukla Dwadashi puja, with popular choices including:

  • Vishnu Gayatri Mantra: “Om Narayana Vishwachakraaya Vidmahe Hiranyagarbhaya Dharmo Dharyaat Dhimo Yaso Devaso Naha.”
  • Vishnu Sahasranama: A thousand names of Lord Vishnu, believed to bring immense blessings.
  • Kurma Stotra: Hymns devoted to Lord Vishnu’s Kurma (turtle) avatar.

6. What is the story behind the celebration of Paush Shukla Dwadashi?

The story behind Paush Shukla Dwadashi revolves around the Samudra Manthan, where devas and asuras churned the cosmic ocean to obtain the elixir of immortality (Amrita). During this process, Mount Mandara served as the churning rod, and Lord Vishnu took the form of Kurma (turtle) to provide support and balance.

7. What are some remedies associated with Paush Shukla Dwadashi for attaining happiness and prosperity?

Several remedies are believed to bring happiness and prosperity on Paush Shukla Dwadashi:

  • Worshipping Lord Vishnu and offering tulsi leaves and sweets.
  • Donating food, clothes, and other essentials to the needy.
  • Chanting mantras like Vishnu Gayatri Mantra or Vishnu Sahasranama.
  • Bathing in holy rivers or sacred water bodies.
  • Avoiding alcohol, meat, and other intoxicants.

8. Is there any special significance of worshipping Lord Vishnu and the turtle on Paush Shukla Dwadashi?

Yes, worshipping Lord Vishnu and the turtle holds immense significance on Paush Shukla Dwadashi. Vishnu’s Kurma avatar symbolizes patience, resilience, and support, virtues desirable for overcoming life’s challenges. Worshipping the turtle is believed to bring similar qualities and attract divine blessings.

9. How is Paush Shukla Dwadashi celebrated in different parts of India?

Celebrations vary across regions, but common elements include puja rituals, fasting, chanting, and charity. In some places, processions with decorated idols of Lord Vishnu are held. In South India, Paush Shukla Dwadashi is also associated with the Vaikunta Ekadashi festival, marking the opening of the gates of heaven (Vaikunta).

10. Are there any specific dos and don’ts to follow during Paush Shukla Dwadashi?

While specific practices may differ, some general do’s and don’ts include:

  • Do: Observe vegetarianism, engage in religious activities, maintain positive thoughts and actions, donate to charity.
  • Don’t: Consume alcohol, meat, or other intoxicants, engage in anger or negative thoughts, harm any living being.

By understanding and following these guidelines, you can make the most of this auspicious occasion and seek blessings from Lord Vishnu on Paush Shukla Dwadashi.

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