Akshaya Tritiya is considered to be a holy festival for Hindus and an auspicious day for new ventures. Akshaya Tritiya or Akha Teej is celebrated on the third day of Shukla Paksha ( bright fortnight) of the Hindu month of Vaishakha, and coincides with Parshuram Jayanti. It is believed that Lord Parshuram, the sixth avatar of Lord Vishnu, was born on this day
Akshaya means ‘never ending‘ and the importance of Akshaya Tritiya has similar place in the Hindu calendar. This day has a great astrological significance in our lives. It is believed that the Sun and the Moon are at their most extreme point of brightness.
There are some legends associated with Akshaya Tritiya.
It is believed that the day of Akshaya Tritiya marks the beginning of Sata Yuga ( Golden Age) and on this day, Ved Vyasa ji started writing Mahabharata along with Lord Ganesha.
During their exile, Lord Krishna gifted the Pandavas with ‘Akshaya Patra’, the bowl of food that would never go empty. It is said that the day was of Akshaya Tritiya.
According to Puranic texts, Parshuram – the sixth avatar of Lord Vishnu, was born at Renuka Tirth on this day. He was then named Ramabhadra. He was an ardent devotee of Lord Shiva. Being pleased with his devotion, Lord Shiva gifted him with a divine responsibility of liberating Mother Goddess from the asuras and presented divine weapons including an axe-shaped weapon called Parshu. Thus he was then called as ‘Parshurama’ – Rama with axe.
One of most popular legend associated with the celebration of Akshaya Tritiya is of Sri Krishna and his poor Brahmin friend Sudama. Once, on the day of Akshaya Tritiya, Sudama visited Krishna at his Dwarka palace. The main purpose for his visit was to ask for some financial help from Krishna.
Krishna welcomed Sudama in a grand way and washed his feet since he was a guest. This embarrassed Sudama even more. Having done that, Krishna playfully asked what he had brought as a gift for his friend. Sudama was ashamed of not being capable to present his friend anything, but some Poha (beaten rice). Krishna did not care to mend his attitude toward the bond of friendship and relished on the Poha gifted by his dear friend.
Being overwhelmed by the treatment, Sudama could not ask for anything more from Krishna and he returned home empty handed. On his return, Sudama found his hut transformed into a royal palace and everything grand. It was a boon by Lord Krishna that Sudama attained much more than financial help. Since then, the day is celebrated as Akshaya Tritiya.
Akshaya Tritiya is celebrated in various ways, such as
Gaja (Elephant) Puja – for abundance and sustenance of wealth and prosperity in life.
Ashwa (Horse) Puja - horse is considered as disciple of planet Mars which represents command and energy.
Gou (cow) Puja - Cow is the symbol of warmth, love and kindness.
Mahalaxmi Puja – Goddess Mahalaxmi is considered to be associated with wealth and prosperity. Mahalaxmi puja signify unending fortune and wellbeing. 1008 names of Mahalaxmi is chanted during this puja.