Kartik (Damodar) is the best, the purest of purifiers, and most glorious of all months. Kartik month is particularly dear to Lord Sri Krishna. This month is full of bhakta vatsalya. Any vrata, even the smallest, will yield huge results. The effect of performing a Kartik Vrata lasts for one hundred lifetimes, Kartik or the festival of offering lamps to Lord Krishna, glorifies Lord Krishna’s pastime of being bound with ropes by Mother Yashoda.
Damodara Vrata, also called Kartik Vrat, is observed in the month of Kartika (October – November). Suta Goswami says: If anyone fasts and observes the Kartika Vrata according to the rules and regulations, the Yamadutas (the messengers of Yamaraja) run away from him. The performance of Kartika Vrata is better than performing one hundred great sacrifices as prescribed in Vedic scriptures (Padma Purana). How to observe Damodara Vrata? Wake up early in the morning and take a bath. In Padma Purana, it is mentioned: “One who bathes early in the morning during the month of Kartika attains the merit of bathing in all places of pilgrimage.” Chant at least one mala of Hare Krishna maha-mantra. Read the 9th and 10th chapters of the book Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead authored by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada which speaks about the pastime of Damodar in detail. Cook varieties of vegetarian food stuffs and offer to Lord Damodara. Perform Damodar-arati. You can sing the Damodar-astakam and offer a ghee lamp to Lord Damodara. In Padma Purana, it is mentioned: Anyone who offers a ghee lamp to Lord Damodara in the month of Kartika will be freed from all kinds of sins and he goes to the abode of Lord Hari. Alternatively, you can also offer a ghee lamp to Tulasi-devi and pray for eternal service at the lotus feet of Radha and Krishna in Vrindavan. You may also invite your neighbors, relatives and friends to participate in this sacred Damodar Arati and give them an opportunity to offer ghee lamps to Lord Damodara & accept the prasadam of the Lord.