Best activity and best vrata for Kartik
Hari-bhakti-vilasa, Sanatana Gosvami
Moreover, for those who hear Visnu-katha in this month, each half verse or quarter of verse yields the fruits of donating one hundred cows; indeed, O great sage, all other duties should be given up in favor of hearing scriptures from holy men. Be it for spiritual benefit or with other expectations, by engaging in Hari-katha one uplifts hundreds of his family’s generations.
A person will burn all sinful reactions and gain the fruit of ten thousand sacrifices for each day of Kartika spent in the delight of the scriptures. In fact, Madhusudana is not as pleased by sacrifices or by charity of cows and elephants as He is pleased by discourses from the scriptures during Kartika.
O eminent sage, by hearing Hari-katha one can transcend the distress accumulated in millions of births. By regularly trying to read Srimad Bhagavatam during this month one gains the benefit of reading all eighteen Puranas. (75-81) Furthermore, during Kartika a man should cultivate supreme devotion by living among Vaisnavas, at the cost of giving up acts of piety and other prescribed duties. (82)
(Skanda Purana, dialogue between Brahma and Narada)
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