Maha Shivaratri is observed on the Krishna Paksha of the month of Phalguna, which results in a new day each year. Puja is celebrated the next day after midnight with eating, festivals, and other activities. Many individuals fast on this day as well. Members of the Lingayat sect in South India send presents to their gurus, or spiritual advisers.
MAHA SHIVARATRI’S HISTORY
Maha Shivaratri is a prominent Hindu festival commemorating the deity, Shiva. It also refers to Lord Shiva’s divine dance of creation, preservation, and annihilation. There are 12 Shivaratris in a year, but Maha Shivaratri is the most important. This night celebrates the meeting of Shiva and Shakti, the masculine and feminine energies that keep the universe in balance.
In Hinduism, this is a solemn celebration commemorating the triumph of light over darkness in life. It is set aside for reflection and letting go of things that impede success and progress. It is a day to strive towards letting go of sins, beginning on a road of virtue, and eventually attaining moksha on judgment day.
The celebrations take held across India in accordance with regional norms. Many people rejoice early in the morning, while others stay up all night performing puja. Devotees even fast for a day, only breaking it the next day after a wash. This fast is more of a test of one’s resolve than a means of obtaining blessings. Alexander Cunningham reported a fair and dance event on Maha Shivaratri at the Khajuraho Shiva temples in 1864, including Shaiva worshippers tented for miles around the temple complex.
Outside of India, Nepal also observes Maha Shivaratri, which is a national holiday. The primary event is held at the Pashupatinath temple. Hindus visit Shiva temples even in Pakistan, and the most notable celebration is the three-day Umerkot Shiv Mandir festival.
Thus, Maha Shivaratri is a very significant day for Hindus all over the world, and it is celebrated with great zeal.
TIMELINE OF MAHA SHIVARATRI
1700 B.C. – 1100 B.C. As an Adjective, Shiva
In the Rig Veda, Shiva is employed as an adjective.
400 B.C. until 200 B.C. Rudra’s Transformation into Shiva
The Shvetashvatara Upanishad describes Rudra’s transformation from a petty god to a superior one.
1 A.D. Literature for Shiva
The literature about Shiva begins to spread widely throughout India.
1997 Lord Shiva, A Television Series
“Om Namah Shivay”, a series based on Hindu Puranic legends and Lord Shiva myths, has been launched.
HOW TO APPRECIATE MAHA SHIVARATRI
Keep a fast
On Maha Shivaratri, many devotees fast. On this day, only fruits, milk, and recipes containing fast-compliant components are permitted. It is best to avoid eating meat, drinking alcohol, and using cigarettes.
Go to a Shiva temple
At midnight, go to a local Shiva temple and absorb up all the wonderful vibratory energy during the midnight puja. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Offer Lord Shiva prayers and take an oath to work on oneself and tread the road of virtue.
Allow time for self-reflection
Maha Shivaratri is a sombre event; in addition to completing puja and rituals, you can use this time to reflect on yourself. Recognize how your actions effect you and those around you. If required, take corrective action.
5 IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT LORD SHIVA
Lord Shiva is one of the three highest Hindu gods who create the Trimurti, together with Brahma, the creator, Vishnu, the preserver, and Shiva, the destroyer.
The wife of Lord Shiva
Parvati, the Hindu goddess of marriage, love, fertility, beauty, devotion, children, divine might, and power, is Lord Shiva’s wife.
The third eye of Lord Shiva
Lord Shiva is said to have a third eye, which he frequently closes when looking inside.
Necklace with a cobra
Lord Shiva is depicted with a snake necklace, which symbolises his might and power as a supreme god.
Shaivism is the worship of Lord Shiva.
WHY IS MAHA SHIVARATRI IMPORTANT?
It promotes contemplation
Maha Shivaratri is a day dedicated to reflection. It is essential to understand that all acts have repercussions. This day reminds you to look deep into your spirit for answers. Examine your activities. Learn to accept individuals for who they are and to assist and guide others in the correct direction.
It inspires people to follow the road of virtue
Maha Shivaratri provides an opportunity to leave obstructions in one’s way and walk in virtue. It is possible to acquire moksha by doing nice actions. One must recognise the significance of living a real and just life free of worldly pleasures and faults.
It recognises the Hindu god
Maha Shivaratri honours the Hindu god Shiva, who is worshipped by Hindus worldwide. Within the Trimurti, he is known as ‘The Destroyer’. Shiva is the Shaivite deity who creates, protects, and alters the cosmos.