Fasting is observed by people of many religions and regions. They pray and observe fast. Fasting is a very important aspect in Hinduism. They fast in the name of god once or twice in every week.
The fast on days associated to the deities that they follow.
Sunday – Sun GodThose who undertake fast (upvaas) on the day only take a single meal. Oil and salt is avoided. Red is the color of the day and red flowers are offered to Lord Surya. Those people who undertake fast on the day only eat food once that too before sunset. Salt, oil and fried food items are avoided. It is believed that Ravivar Vratham will help in fulfilling desires. People with skin diseases observe the Vratham to get relief.
Monday – Lord ShivaThose devotees observing fast only eat food once. People visit Lord Shiva shrines and conduct pujas. It is believed that those people who observe Upvaas on Monday will have their desires fulfilled and will be blessed with wisdom. In some areas, fasting on Mondays is observed by unmarried women to get an ideal husband. Monday fasting is dedicated to Lord Shiva too has numerous stories. Among the several myths, three have gained popularity – the first is the story of a poor Brahmin gaining wealth due to Monday fasting, second is the story of a rich merchant begetting a son after long wait and the subsequent death of the son and his rebirth due to the grace of Lord Shiva and Parvati and the third story is the most famous involving the game of dice played between Shiva and Parvati.
A single meal is taken on the day after midday. Those observing partial fast take fruits or Sabudana Khichadi.
Tuesday – Tuesday is dedicated to Lord Ganesha, Karthikeya, Durga, Goddess KaliToday’s fasting is observed by those couples who wish to have a son. Other benefits include happiness in the family. People who believe in astrology observe fast to alleviate the harmful effects associated with the planet mangal or mars. Those who undertake the fast on Tuesdays only take a single meal. It is a whole day fast. The single meal on the day is usually any food made of wheat and jaggery.
Thursday – Lord DattatreyaPeople observe a fast on Thursday with a belief that they would be blessed with happiness, success and prosperity.
Friday – Mahalakshmi, Santhosi Ma, Annapuraneshwari and DurgaThose devotees observing the fast make it a point to eat at night. Today’s fasting begins at sunrise and ends with sunset. The person fasting only partakes in the evening meal. White colored food like kheer or milk is the most preferred. Fast is kept for various reasons which include removal of obstacles, for a child, happy family life etc.
Saturday – Lord HanumanFasting is observed for fulfillment of wishes, getting successful, being prosperous and healthy.