Budhwar Vrat Hindu mythology describes that every planet of our solar system is a celestial body and dedicates each day of a week to a particular deity. Wednesday (Budhavar) is dedicated to the planet Mercury, and the Lord of Mercury – Budhdev. On this day, most of the devotee’s worship Lord Ganesh along with Lord Budhdev. Lord Budhdev (Planet Mercury) holds a pristine position in Hindu Mythology with a dedicated mid-week day. According to astrologers, Mercury is being regarded as a prince in the planetary cabinet and acts as a protective agency that paints a picture of intelligence, hope, and faith.

Devotees from the Hindu religion worship Lord Budhdev on Budhvar (Wednesday) to receive His graceful blessings through popularly fast Budhvar Vrat. As per guidelines from Puranas, Hindus observer a fast on this day and celebrates this auspicious ritual for 21 consecutive Wednesdays to get fruitful results.

The ideal time to start the Budhvar Vrat: Astrologers and experts of this Vrat Vidhi (fast procedure) advocate that the best time to start Budhvar Vrat is the first Wednesday falling in the Shukla Paksha (rising-waxing phase of moon) of any lunar month. One should observe this fast for a minimum of 21 consecutive Wednesdays.

Procedure for Budhvar Vrat
• Devotees observing this fast must wake up before sunrise to complete the routine and to take a holy bath. The observer of this fast should wear green colored clothes as the cosmic color of planet Mercury is green or light green.
• Later on, he/she should purify the puja room by sprinkling Ganga Jal or water from any other holy river.
• Place an idol or pictures of Lord Budhdev and Lord Ganesh in the North-East direction of the house.
• Offer different fruits, colorful flowers, garlands, bel leaves, incense sticks, and light a lamp of ghee to begin the puja.
• Chant the Budh, Mercury Mantra for 108 times continuously.
• Read or listen to the Budhvar Vrat Katha with a pure heart and do not get up or leave that place in the middle.
• To conclude the puja, offer aarti and flowers to the deities.
• A devotee needs to eat the prasad after distributing it to all members of the family.
• The observer of this fast can eat fruits, juices without salt, water along with the prasad.

Mantras for Budhvar Vrat:
Planet Budh Mantra:
Om Budhaaye Namaha

Planet Budh Beeja Mantra:
Om bram breem broum sah Budhaya Namaha

Significance of Wednesday Fast: Mercury is a fast-moving planet and closest to the Sun in our solar system. Astrologically this planet represents attributes like intelligence, wisdom, mind, thinking process, wealth, career growth, business growth, happiness. Thus, observing a Wednesday fast brings fruitful developments in these areas. Worship to Lord Ganesha and observing the Budhvar Vrat also favors these factors as Lord Ganesha is also known as Vighnaharta (remover of obstacles).

• Keeping a fast and celebrating this Vrat with devotion increases reasoning power and analytic ability which is quite important for a student as well as a businessman.
• Though Budh Graha (planet) is generally considered as a beneficial planet, under certain circumstances it plays the role of a malefic planet. So, those born under the influence of strong Mercury, they should observe this Vrat to control their anxiety as well as indecisiveness.
• People afflicted by the ill-effects of the planet Mercury may suffer from highs and lows in relationships, nervous system disorders, hypertension, and lack of speaking, as well as writing skills. Observing Wednesday fast helps to overcome these problems with the divine blessings of Lord Budhdev.
• Budh Graha governs the Anahata Chakra or Heart chakra, which is the center of the seven chakras and the region for the spiritual upliftment. By observing a Bhudavar Vrat and praying to Lord Budhdev, a devotee can develop qualities like love, kindness, forgiveness, etc.

Bhudhvar Vrat Katha (Wednesday Fast Story): A rich man named Keshav used to live in Varanasi. He was married to a beautiful and virtuous girl, Soubhagya of Allahabad. Once Keshav went to his parent-in-law's house to bring his wife. He asked his in-laws to bid farewell to Soubhagya. But her parents said, “dear son today is Wednesday, and traveling for any auspicious work is not done on Wednesday.” But Keshav did not listen to their repeated requests and told that he did not believe in auspicious or unfavourable things. After a lot of discussions, the parents of Soubhagya agreed to forcefully bid farewell to her.

Both started their journey in a bullock cart. After covering a short distance, Soubhagya felt thirsty. Keshav made her sit under a tree and went to bring water. When Keshav came back with water, he was surprised to see a man exactly like him sitting next to his wife. Soubhagya was also shocked looking at him because both were looking like a carbon copy.

Keshav asked that person “who are you and why are you sitting with my wife?” The man replied “gentleman, this is my wife and we are coming from my parents-in-law's house. But who are you to ask me a question like this?” Keshav started shouting and said “You must be a thief or a fraud. She is my wife and I had made her sit under the tree and went to bring water.” Hearing this, the man said “O man, you are lying. When Soubhagya was feeling thirsty, I went to bring water. I have already given her water. Now you must leave this place or else, I will call the nearby soldier and get you caught.”

Both started fighting. Seeing them fighting many people gathered there and started discussing the unexpected situation. Then a pleasant voice came from the heaven, saying “Keshav! You did not listen to the words of Soubhagya’s parents and made a forceful departure on Wednesday. This all is happening due to the rage of Budhdev.”

Keshav prayed to God Budhdev. He said “O celestial Lord, please forgive me. I have committed a big mistake; I will never travel on a Wednesday in the future.” Listening to this, the merciful Lord Budhdev forgave him. Immediately, Keshav’s duplicate vanished from that place and other people got puzzled looking at this miracle. Keshav and his wife happily started their journey towards Varanasi. They reached home safely and started observing the Bhudhvar Vrat. By the blessing of Lord Budhdev, their home was full of wealth and they lived happily forever. Since then, devotees started observing the fast of Wednesday with faith and devotion to fulfil their desires and to live a blissful life.

Summary: Hindu scriptures and Puranas dedicate this auspicious ritual Wednesday Fast or Budhvar Vrat to the Lord Budhdev or Planet Mercury. Experts as well as astrologers’ advocates that the planet Mercury is directly associated with qualities like intelligence, wisdom and it rules over the central nervous system and the Anahata (Heart) chakra. So, Budhvar Vrat is also beneficial for those with weak or malefic Mercury in their horoscope birth chart. However, Hindu mythology describes that anyone can observe this Budhvar Vrat for a peaceful and successful life.

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