Methods for fasting during Anant Chaturdashi
For Anant Chaturdashi fasting, take morning bath and take the resolution for fasting. Although in the scriptures it is said that the resolution for fasting and worshiping should be done on the banks of a sacred river or lake, however, if it is not possible, in such a situation the urn can be installed in the sacred pooja room of the house.
Place the statue of Lord Vishnu lying on the Sheshnag on the urn, or place on the urn a statue of Anant, made of kush, placed on a plate that looks like the lotus with 8 petals. Further, Anant made up of fourteen knots of raw drool coloured with kumkum, kesar or turmeric is also kept. Put Anantasutra ie dora with fourteen knots along with it. After this worship Lord Vishnu chanting ‘Om Anantayanam’ mantra.
After the worship, men should tie the twine in the right hand and women in the left hand. After tying the Anantasutra, give fresh dishes to the Brahmins and take the prasad yourself along with your family. Read or listen to the story of fasting after worshiping.
Story of Anant Chaturdashi
1. The story of Anant Chaturdashi is that there was a saint named Sumant in Satyayug. His daughter Sheela was very gentle. Sumantu Muni made the girl marry the Kaundinya Muni. When Kaundinya Muni was returning home from her in-laws with his wife Sheela, on the way they saw some women worshiping Lord Anant on the banks of the river. From them Sheela came to know about the greatness of eternal-fast, Sheela also worshiped the Lord Anant and tied the Anantasutra. As a result, in a few days his house was filled with wealth.
2. Another story is also popular on this festival
One day, the sight of the Kaundinya Muni felt on the eternal thread tied in the left hand of his wife, he became confused by seeing it and asked, have you done this formula to subdue me? Sheela answered politely – not, it is the sacred thread of infinite God. But the obscurity that has become blind in the eyes of Kaundinya Muni, misunderstood the right words of his wife, and broke it thinking that it is a magical thread for vashikaran and put it in the fire and burned it.
The result of this heinous act soon came to light. All his property was destroyed. After being forced to live in a lowly state situation, the sage Kaundinya decided to penance for his crime. He went to the forest to ask for forgiveness from the Lord Anant. He asked the address of Lord Anant to all those he met on the way.
Kaundinya muni decided to abandon his life as he couldn’t meet the Lord Anant even after searching a lot. An elderly Brahmin then stopped him from committing suicide and took him to a cave and presented the view of the four handed Lord Anant. God said to the Muni- “You have dishonoured the Anantasutra, all this is the result of that. For its atonement, you follow the continuous eternal fast for fourteen years. Once this fasting ritual is completed, you will be restored to your lost property and you will be blessed with happiness.