Updated: Mar 6
Maha Shivratri is a Hindu festival celebrated every year in honor of Lord Shiva. The festival falls on the 14th day of the dark fortnight in the month of Phalguna or Maagha according to the Hindu calendar. It is one of the most significant festivals for devotees of Lord Shiva, and is celebrated with great enthusiasm and devotion.
The word "Maha" means great, and "Shivratri" means the night of Lord Shiva. It is believed that on this night, Lord Shiva performs the dance of creation, preservation, and destruction. Devotees of Lord Shiva observe fasts, chant mantras, and offer prayers to seek blessings and protection from their lord.
According to Hindu mythology, Maha Shivratri marks the day when Lord Shiva married Goddess Parvati. The festival is also believed to be the day when Lord Shiva swallowed the poison that emerged from the churning of the ocean of milk during the Samudra Manthan, to save the world from destruction.
The celebrations of Maha Shivratri vary from region to region, but the underlying sentiment remains the same. Devotees observe fasts and offer prayers to Lord Shiva throughout the day and night. Many temples organize special prayers, cultural programs, and rituals on this day.
One of the most popular rituals associated with Maha Shivratri is the Rudra Abhishek, a ceremony where the Shivlinga (a symbolic representation of Lord Shiva) is bathed with water, milk, honey, and other holy offerings. Devotees also light diyas (lamps), incense, and offer flowers to Lord Shiva as a symbol of devotion and gratitude.
Another important aspect of Maha Shivratri is the consumption of bhaang, a traditional drink made from cannabis leaves, milk, and spices. Bhaang is considered a sacred drink and is believed to have been consumed by Lord Shiva himself.
Maha Shivratri is not just a festival of religious significance, but also a celebration of cultural heritage and tradition. It is a time when families and friends come together to celebrate, offer prayers, and seek blessings. The festival is a reminder of the power and strength of Lord Shiva, and his ability to protect and guide his devotees through all challenges.
In conclusion, Maha Shivratri is a festival that celebrates the glory and divinity of Lord Shiva, and reminds us of the importance of devotion, faith, and tradition. It is a time to seek blessings, offer prayers, and celebrate the rich cultural heritage of India.
Today, on the night on Maha Shivratri it is said that we should stay awake the entire night and keep our back erect so that the spine remains erect which can receive the energies from Lord Shiva. So, we welcome you to meditate, sing and be alligned with lord Shivas energies.
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Director, ME Holistic Centre