significance of Kartika month
Lord Krsna say:"Of all plants, the sacred Tulasi is most dear to Me, of all months, Karttika is most dear, of all places of pilgrimage, My beloved Dvaraka is most dear, and of all days, Ekadasi is most dear." - (Padma Purana, Uttara Khanda 112.3)
The month of Kartika is the most auspicious and the topmost of all the months for the followers of Sanatana- dharma. It is also known as the month of Damodara and is the most meritorious and purified of all other pure months. It is as glorious as the month of Ramadhan is for Muslims and the month of Lent is for Christians.
Urja-vrata is observed in the month of Karttika. Throughout the month ghee lamps are offered to Lord Krsna who is known as Damodara.
As mentioned the month of Kartika is the best of all months and it is on this month many special festivals take place. The following are the prominent festivals that fall in the month of Kartika:
* Bahula-ashtami (The Appearance of Sri Radha kunda)
* Govardhana-Puja, Go-Puja
* Srila Prabhpada Tirobhava Jayanti (Disappearance)
* Shri Krsna Rasayatra, Tulsi-Shaligrama Vivah, Sri Nimbarkacarya Avirbhava Jayanti
damodaram prapadye ‘ham sri-radha-ramanam prabhum prabhavad yasya tat-preshthah kartikah sevito bhavet
“I take shelter in the Supreme Lord Damodara, Who is Shrimati Radhika’s beloved, and under Whose influence His dearest month, Kartika, can be served.”
The festival of offering lamps to Lord Krsna lasts the entire month of Karttika. Observing vrata in the month of Karttika is glorified in the Puranas.
In the Skanda-Purana it is stated: “As Satya-yuga is the best of yugas (ages), as the Vedas are the best of scriptures, as Ganga is the best of rivers, so Kartika is the best of months, the most dear to the Supreme Personality of Godhead Lord Krsna.”
In the Padma-Purana it is further stated: "Among all twelve months, the month of Kartika is dear to Lord Sri Krsna. If somebody performs a little worship of Lord Sri Hari in this month, He offers that devotee His own abode. This statement is true."
Srimati Radharani is known as the Kartika-devata or Kartika Devi, in other words, Radhika is the goddess or presiding Deity of the month of Kartika. Among all other gopis, Srimati Radharani is the most dear to Lord Krsna. Therefore in the month of Karttika, one should worship Lord Damodara with Srimati Radharani near Him.
Vedic scriptures suggest one may observe the following foremost activities throughout the entire month of Kartika:
Japa – chanting the holy names of the Lord Hari
Daily offer ghee lamps to Lord Krsna
Practice brahmacarya – celibacy
Worship of Tulsidevi
Give in charity
It is stated:
damodara astakam nama stotram damodara arcanam nityam damodara akarsi pathet satya vrata uditam
“In the month of Kartika, one should daily worship Lord Damodara and sing the Damodarastaka (the eight prayers of Lord Damodara) which pleases Lord Damodara, written by the sage named Satyavrata.” (Hari Bhakti Vilasa 16.198)
Futhermore scriptures state that if even for a short time somebody burns a lamp in the temple of Lord Sri Hari, then whatever sins he has acquired for millions of kalpas (one kalpa equals 1000 yugas) are all destroyed. A person who offers a lamp during the month of Kartika attains a result that cannot be obtained with even a hundred yajnas or a hundred pilgrimages.
Source : Kartika Mahatmya